Classical Movements is starting a new initiative: Rhapsody! Tours. We’re going back to our roots, starting as Blue Heart Travel in 1992, we organized cultural tours to unique and adventurous destinations around the world. Starting in the Fall of 2020, we are pleased to offer again these special one-of-a-kind small group experiences, to our dear clients and friends. While our core business is still the planning of choir and orchestra tours, we are once again offering these individual and small group tours due to years of popular demand.
If you’re as eager to travel again as we are, join us in journeying to some of the most fascinating places around the world. Experience the finest art, music, and dance in some of our favorite destinations, led by the Classical Movements staff you know and love. Our in-house experts will lead you from an insider’s point of view and immerse you in the authentic cultural experiences of each destination in a way no other company can.
Join us in exploring some of the world’s most fascinating places, led by Classical Movements’ in-house experts. Tours are available for individuals or small groups, and private departures are available. These comprehensive multi-city tours are built to give you a comprehensive look at each destination and are specially designed for our discerning client base. From privately-led tours of world-famous landmarks to intimate workshops with native cultural practitioners, Rhapsody’s Wonderful World tours will take you beyond the usual and into the extraordinary.
Get away from the crowds and experience the hidden wonders of Europe. These leisurely and accessible tours are crafted to be not only top-notch cultural experiences but escapes from the stress and press of the big city. Let Classical Movements give you your very own international “stay-cation”, with week-long stays at the same hotel to let you experience each magical destination like a local. Take day trips to historical and cultural sites, national parks, and other picturesque wide-open spaces. Give yourself room to breathe again with Rhapsody’s Hidden Gems tours.
Namaste! From Mumbai to Jaipur and New Delhi to Agra, the second-most populous country in the world stretches over a vast geographical and cultural range. Experience Indian cuisine and religion firsthand, with private workshops led by master practitioners in India’s famous culinary tradition and time-honored spiritual practices. Immerse yourself in the culture of the sub-continent, which is characterized by its own centuries-old music and dance forms, but also plays host to a rising love and practice of Western art music. See tigers and elephants up close, gaze at ancient monuments, but above all, soak up the sights and sounds of this extraordinary nation at the other side of the world.
Made famous by the iconic Queen song, the idyllic countryside of the western Czech Republic, historically known as Bohemia, is home to dozens of medieval castles and churches. The rolling hills and peaceful forests of the region are dotted with red-roofed villages and towns that are easily at home on postcards and in photography books. Not only that, as a crossroads of Europe, but the region has also played host to dozens of composers, from Mozart to Dvorak and to this day is a hotbed of music and culture. Spend a week in the charming town of Tabor, an easy distance from all the most picturesque and tranquil vistas of Czechia. Let the landscapes of Bohemia refresh and inspire you.
Ævintýri! Let nature be your guide as you experience the wild beauty of mystical Iceland. From geysers to volcanoes to glaciers, fire and ice rule this ancient land. With a history dating back to 9th-century Viking explorers, the island has always attracted travelers who crave adventure. Modern-day Iceland is no different and is dotted with opportunities for kayaking, horseback riding, and whale-watching. Far from an unsettled wilderness, however, Iceland is also known worldwide for its unique cultural offerings. With eccentric musical figures like Björk to some of the best choirs in the world, religious architecture unlike anywhere else, and historical landmarks dating back over a thousand years, be transported into the mists by the wonders of Iceland.
The Iberian Peninsula of Spain and Portugal is home to many historical cities and ancient monuments to empires past, but no region merges history with beauty like the coastline of northern Portugal. From the beaches and secluded coves of Arrábida Natural Park to the breathtaking pastel villas of Sintra, immerse yourself in the stunning beauty of this often-overlooked Westernmost corner of Europe. Spend a week in the coastal retreat of Cascais, the historical vacation spot for the Portuguese royal family. Find yourself blown away by the natural beauty and rich culture of the Iberian coast.
Siyahamba! As the famous South African hymn goes, so you too will be walking in the footsteps of ancestors. The history of Southern Africa dates not in the thousands of years, but in the millions. Witness the extraordinary natural, cultural, and human beauty of this ancient land. See all of the classic African wildlife, from the mighty elephant to the diminutive penguin, and marvel at the monumental Victoria Falls. Get a firsthand experience of South Africa’s vibrant tradition of choral music and contribute to the lives of music students in some of the poorest neighborhoods in the area. Be a witness to history as you tour Robben Island, where Nelson Mandela was held prisoner. Visit unforgettable Southern Africa to truly experience the full spectrum of humanity.
While the yodelers of yore may not be heard too often anymore, the peaks and valleys of the Swiss Alps still carry all the majesty (not to mention acoustics) that they always have. The lakeside town of Interlaken is your home base for the week in this centuries-old vacation region that still manages to keep its distinctive historical charm. Feel the mountain breezes as you take excursions on sky-high train lines, cruise the cool waters of Lake Lucerne, and visit a real working farm to get an intimate sense of the humanity of this world-famous region. Get a breath of fresh air in Switzerland, the crystal crown of Europe.
Mare Nostrum! From Turkey to Spain, the mighty Mediterranean has served as a mixing-bowl of culture from the earliest origins of humanity. Experience the breathtaking natural and cultural beauty of the islands of Sicily and Malta. Feast your eyes on volcanoes by picturesque bays and revel in the musical and dance forms forged by centuries of geographic isolation. Marvel at the finest examples of art and architecture created by many centuries of migration, political upheaval, and cultural mixing. From Roman ruins to neo-Classical opera houses to the exquisite and unique cuisine, the islands of Sicily and Malta leave nothing to be desired for any traveler.
The southern Côte d’Azur of France is a storied vacation spot, home to some of the world’s most exclusive resorts, beaches, and islands. But tucked away in a bend in the coastline is a landscape unlike anywhere else. Your week in Provence will be spent in the city of Avignon, which has seen everyone from Roman emperors to wayward popes pass through its ancient gates. Take day trips to geographical marvels like the Verdon Gorge and the Camargue, a marshy area famous for its native ponies, folk music, and even unique dialect. Trips to Aix-en-Provence and the surrounding countryside will give you a taste of the region’s distinctive flare. See for yourself why the lavender fields, soaring cliffs, and leisurely beaches of Provence have captured the world’s imagination.
Vamos al Sur! Today, the Andes are in the heartland of Latin America. But before European colonization, great rulers lorded over vast empires and gazed down from vantage points high above mountains, farmlands, and coastlines. Follow in their footsteps, as you marvel at Incan ruins hidden in lush valleys and cast your eyes upward at towering stone cathedrals. You will get a firsthand experience of the indigenous customs of the land and learn the ancient practices of those whose ancestors settled the region, while also experiencing the finest of modern local offerings. The colors, sights, sounds, and tastes of the Andes are famed around the world. Don’t hesitate to experience them for yourself.
Far from the hustle and bustle of Dublin lies the southwest of Ireland, known for its craggy cliffs, charming villages, and most of all, green as far as the eye can see. Centuries of warm ocean breezes and the pounding surf have carved a unique combination of rocky coastlines and verdant hills. The Ring of Kerry is perhaps the region’s most-visited landmark. After a week in the town of Killarney, though, with its nearby National Park, home to both stately homes and rushing whitewater rivers, you’ll have a unique look, away from the crowds, at the real Ireland. Visit the seaside town of Dingle for a perfectly authentic Irish experience, as you sing alongside the practitioners of the Emerald Isle’s emblematic musical traditions while sipping a Guinness, all in the cozy confines of a neighborhood pub. Your eyes will be smiling as you take in the tranquil pleasures of Ireland.
Xin Chào! The beauty and culture of Vietnam has captured the imagination of the world for centuries. While Americans are intimately familiar with its more recent political history and relationship with the United States, many are unaware of the country’s unique and stunning traditions of music, cuisine, dance, and visual art. Experience the finest of Vietnamese performing arts as you travel the length of this ancient nation. Traverse leisurely down Vietnam’s famous waterways and get up close and personal with the industries that make the country famous for its ingenuity and creativity. A visit to this complex coastal nation will change your perspective on art as well as politics and ultimately leave you in awe at the power of the human spirit.
Once the realm of mighty Spartan emperors and run through by fierce battles, the Peloponnesian peninsula of southwestern Greece now sits like a peaceful but vibrant escape from the tourist hotspots of the coasts further north. Nestled in the waters of the Aegean, the peninsula sits barely connected to the mainland and is a magical place unto itself. Settle into the ancient town of Nafplio, built up against a ridge and overlooking a tiny bay of breathtaking blue. Take day trips to the ruins of Mycenae and Epidavros and marvel at the history of the region that so shaped our modern world. Get a chance to learn the basics of real Greek cooking and take a private boat trip to the island of Hydra. You’ll get a look at the part of Greece that lies off the beaten track. Take your own personal odyssey to serenity.
Skol! From the narrow streets of Stockholm and Helsinki to the rich forests of Estonia, the Baltic and Scandinavian states are full of obvious and world-famous natural beauty. But the culture of these countries, unique and unparalleled, really drives home the value of traveling to the region. Latvia, famous for a rich and ancient tradition of choral music and folk songs, and Lithuania, home to a folk art practice that reflects centuries of migration and intermingling, is often overlooked by less discerning travelers. Find yourself astonished at the art, architecture, and music of a corner of the world you will never forget.
Just next-door to the more famous province of Tuscany, the stony hills of Umbria offer a unique appeal to the discerning traveler. From world-famous spots like Assisi to tiny towns like Foligno, the region boasts an impressive range of culinary, visual, and artistic delights. Visit the town of Norcia, known around the world for charcuterie, and the Carpina Valley, famous for truffles. Italy is more than just a culinary capital, however. Visit some of the most beautiful churches in the world, most untouched since their construction in the height of the Renaissance. Let your spirit rest for a week in the regional capital Perugia. Let the hilltop towns of Umbria, that once protected their citizens from invasion, embrace you with characteristic Italian warmth and hospitality.
About Classical Movements
The premier concert tour company for the world’s great orchestras and choirs, Classical Movements creates meaningful cultural experiences through music in 145 countries. An industry leader for over a quarter-century, Classical Movements organizes more than 60 tours every year, producing some 200 concerts every season. Producer of two international choral festivals—Ihlombe! in South Africa and Serenade! in Washington, D.C.—and the Prague Summer Nights: Young Artists Music Festival, in addition, Classical Movements’ Eric Daniel Helms New Music Program has commissioned over 70 works from Grammy, Oscar and Pulitzer Prize-winning composers. Winner of Americans for the Arts’ BCA10: Best Businesses Partnering with the Arts Award, since its founding in 1992, as a truly global company, Classical Movements remains committed to facilitating cultural diplomacy across the world—promoting peace through the medium of music.