When: Jun 10—Jun 24
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European Anabaptist Heritage Tour

On this classic Anabaptist heritage tour in Europe, visit significant sites that will bring to life the stories of Menno Simons, Jacob Hutter, Pilgram Marpeck, Dirk Willems, Jakob Amman, and other important Anabaptist leaders. See the historic Dutch village of Zaanse Schans, take a cable car up Stockhorn mountain, reflect in a cave where Anabaptists worshipped in secret, and stay in the homes of generous, hospitable locals in the town of Berlikum. Also explore art and culture in the Netherlands, Germany, France, and Switzerland. Experienced tour leader and former Hesston College Professor John Sharp will guide you on this journey of discovery and fellowship.

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At A Glance


  • June 10-24, 2019
  • 15 Days

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Itinerary

Monday, June 10     Amsterdam/Alphen aan den Rijn

Arrive in Amsterdam and meet your fellow travellers at the hotel. Visit Zaanse Schans, a historic Dutch village with traditional Dutch Mennonite houses, working windmills, and artisans crafting things like wooden shoes and cheese. Finish the day’s explorations with a visit to Asperen to hear the story of Dirk Willems.

Tuesday, June 11     Amsterdam/Alphen aan den Rijn

Following an early breakfast, tour the impressive Aalsmeer flower auction where 20 million flowers from around the world are traded daily! Browse the Rijksmuseum, known for its collection of Dutch Golden Age works, to see pieces by world-renowned artists like Rembrandt, Vermeer, and Jan Steen. Be sure to see the museum’s collection of Mennonite works too! Visit the Singel Mennonite Church and the Mennonite Seminary at the University of Amsterdam. Then climb aboard a river boat for a leisurely tour of Amsterdam’s canals.

Wednesday, June 12     Berlikum

Cross the 22-mile Afsluitdijk to Friesland to learn about the Menno Simons story. Visit the hidden church at Pingjum, and the Menno Simons monument at Witmarsum—the village where he was born. Visit Leeuwarden. Tonight, we will be hosted in homes by Mennonites in Berlikum.

Thursday, June 13     Münster

Over breakfast, say goodbye to our new friends at Berlikum, then travel to Münster, Germany. Meet the tower keeper and take a walking tour to gain greater insight into the darker times of Anabaptist history. Hear about the violent uprising of radical Anabaptists during the Münster Rebellion. See the cages that were once used to imprison Anabaptist leaders which still hang from the St. Lamberti Church tower today.

Friday, June 14     Köln (Cologne)

Today in Schwarzenau, learn more about Alexander Mack and other early Brethren believers who fled here from Schriesheim. Visit Brühl for more of the Church of the Brethren story. End the day in Köln, with a visit the twin-towered Gothic cathedral.

Saturday, June 15     Worms

Drive to the historic town of Boppard. Relax and enjoy the scenery on a Rhine River cruise as we travel from Boppard to Oberwesel. In the fertile Palatinate region, visit the semi-communal Mennonite village of Weierhof, including the Mennonitische Forschungsstelle, Germany’s only major Mennonite archives.

Sunday, June 16     Kraichgau

In the productive Kraichgau region of Southwestern Germany, visit Sinsheim and Bammental. Step into the cellar at Steinsfurt where 53 Anabaptists worshipping in secret were arrested, and climb the Steinsberg Tower for a panoramic view of farms and villages.

Monday, June 17     Colmar

Drive through the Alsace region of France, where Jakob Amman lived, to hear the Amish origin story. View Strasbourg and continue through the wine route to the quaint town of Riquewihr with its narrow streets and half-timbered houses. See medieval and early Renaissance art in the Unterlinden museum in Colmar.

Tuesday, June 18     Zurich

Take a wagon ride up the Anabaptist climb (Täuferstieg) near Schleitheim where the first Anabaptist confession was written in 1527. Reflect at a unique monument placed in 2004 by Reformed Church leaders as an act of repentance and reconciliation between Anabaptists and their former persecutors. Next, visit a former secret worship site, the Anabaptist Cave at Bäretswil, for worship and reflection. Continue on to Zurich and visit sites as time allows.

Wednesday, June 19     Bern

Spend time in Zurich for an Anabaptist walking tour of sites related to the birth of Anabaptism in 1525. Cross the Sustenpass into the Emmental and Bern Canton.

Thursday, June 20     Bern

Visit Langnau and gain a better understanding of local history in a visit to the cultural museum. Tour the church at Erlenbach in the Simmental where Jakob Amman was baptized. In this church, modern reclamation efforts have unearthed some of Switzerland’s most spectacular pre-Reformation frescoes. Finish the day by taking a cable car up the Stockhorn mountain for fabulous panoramic scenic views.

Friday, June 21     Würzbrunnen

In the Emmental region, visit key sites including Trachselwald Castle, a fortress once used to imprison Anabaptists. At a cemetery and Reformed church in Steffisburg, learn about connections with the Amish. Learn about the historic Reformed church at Wurtzbrunnen, and enjoy the overnight hospitality of believers in the area.

Saturday, June 22     Innsbruck

Travel to Austria and learn about the Jacob Hutter Anabaptist story in Innsbruck. Also, enjoy apple strudel on the famous Maria Theresien Strasse. Visit Hutter Park to see a memorial to Anabaptist martyrs—twelve boulders arranged in a circle to represent the communal life of the Hutterites. Tonight you can attend an optional Tyrolean folk show to experience authentic local music, dancing, and more.

Sunday, June 23     Munich

Travel to Rattenberg to hear about Pilgram Marpeck, the Menno Simons of the South, who left his home to escape arrest as an Anabaptist. See Marpeck’s house. On a visit to a lead crystal blowing centre, marvel at this historic artform and its beautiful results. Later, spend a sobering but meaningful time at Dachau, one of the notorious concentration camps of World War II. The memorials, film and visual displays will remind us of the atrocities committed. Travel to Munich for the night.

Monday, June 24

Depart for home from Munich with insights, memories, and friendships that will last for years to come.

 

Check the pricing page for what is included and excluded in the tour fare.

For further information, please contact us. We would be happy to be of assistance.

Click here for a printable PDF of the tour itinerary and costs.