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German package dealsThe German Tourist Board has gathered a few package deals for visitors.

¶ Those interested in the works of artist Friedensreich Hundertwasser might want to take up an offer by the German city of Magdeburg. His last architectural work, the Green Citadel, is located in this city on the Elbe.

The price begins at 145 euros per person, double occupancy, and includes one night in the hotel in the Hundertwasser House, a welcome drink, city tour, tour of his Green Citadel and a ticket for an evening event or dinner.

Details are at the tourist information center at telephone (+49) (0) 391/19433. The e-mail address is info@magdeburg-tourist.de. The city Web site is www.magdeburg-tourist.de.

¶ If you’re considering a visit before March 31 to Potsdam, the site of the Sanssouci Palace and gardens near Berlin, you might be interested in the weekend package deal offered by the Dorint Novotel Berlin-Potsdam Sanssouci, a hotel near the historic city center and Sanssouci Palace.

The price begins at 92 euros per person, double occupancy, and includes three nights’ accommodation with breakfast.

For details, call Neckermann Reisen at (+49) (0) 6171/6500 (Web site www.neckermann-reisen.de, in German. Choose “Städte & Events.” Then choose “Deutschland” for “land,” “Potsdam” for region, and your dates.)

¶ “The Castle Package to Enjoy” is being offered by the Hornberg Castle in Neckarzimmern am Neckar, one of the stops on Germany’s 600-mile Castle Road. It begins at 110 euros per person, double occupancy, and includes one night’s accommodation, breakfast, drink and four-course meal.

Find details at telephone (+49) (0) 6261/ 92460. The e-mail address is info@burg-hotel-hornberg.de. The Web site is www.burg-hotel-hornberg.de.

¶ Those who seek a relaxing break might want to take up the “Wellness Pampering Weekend” in the Gronauer Tannenhof Hotel-Restaurant near Cologne.

The package starts at 169 euros per person, double occupancy, and includes two nights’ accommodations, breakfast and a day ticket for Mediterana. Mediterana is a sauna and pool oasis with an oriental atmosphere near the resort area around Bensberg Lake. It includes, for example, the Bain Arabisances, a fireplace with eucalyptus leaves steaming to give off their scent. Palms, olive trees and painted tiles from Italy and Spain help create the Mediterranean atmosphere.

Get details about the package at telephone (+49) (0) 2266/463377 or by e-mailing naturarena@bergischesland.de. Mediterana’s Web site is www.mediterana.de (in German).

¶ Those who are interested in German authors as well as the city of Weimar, can take up the “On the Trail of Goethe and Schiller” package offered by the city’s tourist board.

The package begins at 139 euros per person, double occupancy, and includes two nights’ lodging, breakfast, dinner, tour of the Old Town and entry to Goethe’s and Schiller’s houses.

For details, call (+49) (0) 3643/7450 or e-mail tourist-info@weimar.de. The Web site is www.weimar.de.

Capitals of CultureIn 1985, the Ministers of Culture of the European Community created the Cultural Capitals of Europe initiative. The purpose was to bring together the different cultures of Europe and generate tourism.

Next year’s European Capitals of Cultural are Luxembourg City, Luxembourg, and Sibiu, Romania, both of which will be presenting special programs for the year.

Details and links can be found on the Web at www.sibiu2007.ro/en/capitals and at www. luxembourg2007.org.

Send items to be considered for this column by e-mail to travel@mail.stripes.osd.mil, and mention “Let’s Go.”

Best BetsEngland

London celebrates 2007 with its annual New Year’s Day parade. It begins at noon Monday at Parliament Square and continues down Whitehall, Trafalgar Square, Pall Mall, Regent Street, Piccadilly Circus and Piccadilly and to the junction of Bekeley Street.

More than 10,000 performers from 20 countries (4,500 of them Americans) will entertain in the procession that includes marching bands, cheerleaders, clowns, vintage cars, bikers, carnival queens, Russian dancers, Asian pipers and other colorful participants. New this year are two balloons: the giant Phoenix from Ireland and The Lion of Arras from France. Find details at www.londonparade.co.uk.

France

The French hold not one, but two parades to celebrate the new year, with the Paris Parade Festival Sunday and Monday. On Sunday, Chantilly, north of Paris, says goodbye to 2006 with a grand American-style parade. The international procession begins at 2:30 p.m. with marching bands, carnival bands, cheerleaders, dancers, clowns and floats.

On Sunday, Paris welcomes 2007 with a grand parade through its streets. “Le Festival des Musiques du Nouvel An” will feature performances by international musicians. Also part of the entertainment is a rally of British Minis and Lotus cars. It begins at 2:30 p.m. at the Trocadero, near the Eiffel Tower, heading up Avenue Gustave V Suede to a performance platform outside the Palais Chaillot, then down the Trocadero on via Avenue Albert 1st de Monaco. Find more details at www.parisparade.com.

Germany

If you don’t party too much at the New Year’s celebrations at Brandenburg Gate in Berlin, you might have the energy to return for the annual 4-kilometer fun run at noon on Monday. The route begins at the gate to Siegessäule (Victory column) in the city center. Entry is free.

— Jayne Traendly

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