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Welcome to Rome—once the capital of the world and today the vibrant Italian capital, which you'll have an opportunity to explore. On arrival to Rome Fiumicino Airport transfers will operate at 9:30 am, 12:30 pm and 3:30 pm. Guests arriving later should make their own way to the hotel. Join your Travel Director and fellow travelers for a Welcome Reception this evening. Your introduction to Rome will see you embark on an orientation drive to admire some of the city highlights.
We visit the Vatican City this morning, joining an included sightseeing tour with a Local Specialist to see Michelangelo's magnificent Pietà inside St. Peter's Basilica. Walk in the footsteps of millions of pilgrims to St. Peters Square before continuing to Ancient Rome. Imagine the exhilarating cries of thousands of spectators cheering their favorites to victory at Circus Maximus and visit the impressive Colosseum where gladiators and slaves once fought to their deaths. Enjoy some free time this afternoon to explore the city on your own, or simply relax on the Spanish Steps watching the world go by.
We venture north to Pisa and visit the Square of Miracles with its medieval Cathedral, Romanesque Baptistery and see the Leaning Tower. A short drive takes us to Florence, the Cradle of the Renaissance, once a vibrant republic under the rule of the dynamic Medici family whose love for art and antiquities created one of the world's most cultural cities.
The magnificent marble Duomo, Santa Croce Basilica, Ponte Vecchio and Piazza della Signoria feature on our walking tour with a Local Specialist through Florence's streets. Learn about the quality and workmanship of one of this city's historic industries at a demonstration of Florentine leathercraft. Then, enjoy a leisurely evening soaking up the atmosphere of the Queen of the Adriatic or consider an Optional Experience, navigating the city's elegant canals from the comfort of a traditional gondola.
Dive iInto culture and witness the centuries-old craft of glassblowing on Giudecca Island. Embark on an orientation cruise by private launch to the gateway of Venice, St. Mark's Square. See the Doge's Palace, St. Mark's Cathedral and the Bridge of Sighs. The rest of the afternoon is yours to explore more of the city's sights.
We drive south through the golden fields of Umbria to the green heart of Italy, stopping at the mystical medieval hilltop town of Assisi, most famous for being the birthplace of St. Francis. Join a Local Specialist for a walking tour of the town, which includes a visit to the Basilica of St. Francis to view its magnificent frescoes and carvings.
We pay homage to the thousands of brave souls who lost their lives during the Battle of Monte Cassino, stopping at the Commonwealth War Cemetery en route to the tragic city of Pompeii, which was engulfed during the eruption of Mount Vesuvius. For centuries, the city was lost to the world—its rediscovery in the 18th-century revealing a time capsule of well-preserved ruins that provides insights into the day-to-day life of a Roman city centuries ago. Join a Local Specialist to delve into the city's history before traveling to Naples for your overnight cruise to Palermo, Sicily's fiery capital.
We arrive this morning in Palermo, known for its lavish architecture and gardens. We join our Local Specialist for a sightseeing tour, which includes the Teatro Massimo and Piazza Bellini, located in the heart of the city. We continue to the town of Monreale on the slopes of Monte Caputo overlooking the orange, olive and almond groves of La Conca d'Oro, where we'll visit the magnificent 12th-century Norman Cathedral before returning to Palermo this afternoon.
Visit the lively seaside town of Mondello before continuing your journey to Agrigento. Join a Local Specialist to tour the impressive Greek Valley of Temples dating back to 6th-century BC. This evening we dine in our hotel.
We travel through the vineyards of the southern hills towards the seaside resort of Taormina, your home for the next two nights. Enjoy spectacular vistas and a taste of la dolce vita in this hillside town, enjoying free time on arrival.
Spend the day relaxing at your chic Sicilian resort. Dive into the warm Mediterranean waters, shop for exquisite handmade lace on Via Corso Umberto or indulge in a mulberry granita. Consider joining an Optional Experience to Savoca, the village made famous by 'The Godfather,' and Europe's most active volcano, Mount Etna. This evening, connect with loclas during a Be My Guest dinner hosted at a vineyard on the slopes of Mount Etna.
Today we cross the Straits of Messina to mainland Italy by ferry, driving north through rustic Calabria via Salerno to our hotel in Sorrento where we'll spend the next two nights.
We cruise to the Isle of Capri where we'll enjoy a guided walking tour of Capri Town with a Local Specialist. Stroll through its stylish lanes, window shop along Via Camerelle and watch the beautiful people in the Piazzetta, before returning to Sorrento, where you will have the evening at leisure to indulge in a little limoncello at Piazza Tasso, with its many cafés.
Admire the dramatic coastline, driving north from Sorrento to the Eternal City of Rome. This afternoon, we dive into culture gaining priority access to the Vatican Museums where a Local Specialist will take us on a guided tour. Admire Michelangelo's magnificent 16th-century frescoed ceiling of the Sistine Chapel and see the array of exquisite artifacts at the Museo Gregoriano Profano, founded in the Lateran Apostolic Palace at the behest of Gregory XVI Cappellari in 1844. You'll also enjoy an exclusive al fresco Farewell Dinner against the spectacular backdrop of St. Peter's.
For now it's a fond Ciao Roma as we prepare to depart for our journey home. Return transfers will arrive at Rome Fiumicino Airport at 7 am and 9.30 am. Conditions apply.
20 meals: 14 hot buffet breakfasts, 6 dinners with local wine.
Optional Experiences are subject to change. Your Travel Director will supply you with a final list of Optional Experiences available on your trip. Optional Experiences cannot be booked online; they can be purchased during your trip through your Travel Director.
Discover the most charming areas in the city with a Local Specialist. Wander through the labyrinth of narrow streets and beautiful squares of Rome's historic centre, leading to highlights such as the Trevi Fountain and the Pantheon, as well as hidden corners of the Eternal City.
Adult Price: €33
Spend a light-hearted evening with us in Rome. Relax and enjoy typical Italian cuisine with drinks and music. Afterwards, we’ll enjoy a drive and provide a glimpse into how Romans enjoy their city.
Adult Price: €61
A scenic drive into the Chianti hills, past vineyards, brings us to a delightful hamlet. Our destination is the ancient stone house of Machiavelli, where the great political theorist wrote his immortal work, ‘The Prince’. After a welcome drink and visit of the villa and its wine-cellars, we'll enjoy the best of Tuscan cuisine accompanied by great music and drinks, including of course, Chianti from the Villa’s own vines. This is the essence of all great things Tuscan, past and present, condensed into one memorable evening!
Adult Price: €65
Join us for a scenic drive through the beautiful Tuscan countryside. We will enjoy a meal at a charming restaurant where a selection of regional favourites is served, accompanied by a selection of local wines and live music. A truly unforgettable experience, with an atmosphere that is the essence of all things Tuscan.
Adult Price: €65
On arrival in Venice, a private boat will be waiting to take you to St Mark's Square, where you’ll enjoy a gondola ride while being serenaded by local musicians. Later, private water taxi's will take you along Venice's Grand Canal, where you’ll admire the magnificent palazzos and Rialto Bridge.
Adult Price: €70
Join us for a scenic cruise by private water taxi along Venice's Grand Canal. You’ll admire the magnificent palazzi, as well as catching a glimpse of the Rialto Bridge and St. Mark's Square. Later on, you'll glide gracefully on a gondola along Venice’s dreamy, narrow waterways.
Adult Price: €70
Explore the hidden maze of streets which make up this unique city as your Local Specialist gives you a fascinating insight into Venice's past and present. You’ll visit the majestic Basilica of St Mark, where you’ll have a chance to view some of the prized trophies looted by the Venetians in their rise to power.
Adult Price: €36
Join us as we discover the Venetian Lagoon by private boat. You will enjoy a delicious meal with a selection of drinks on the fishermen's island of Burano, famous for its multi-coloured houses - a real photographer's paradise.
Adult Price: €72
Take a drive along the blue coastal highway to the quaint medieval village of Cefalu. You'll have the chance to stroll from the long golden beaches into the winding Arab streets with your Local Specialist.
Adult Price: €36
A panoramic drive through verdant forest with spectacular views over the city of Palermo brings us to the summit of Mt. Pellegrino. Here we visit the grotto of Santa Rosalia, Palermo's patron saint. Later, with a Local Specialist, we explore and sample Palermitano street food at one of the most famous and colourful markets with its stalls of olives and spices. A wonderful opportunity to enjoy picturesque Sicilian everyday life.
Adult Price: €30
Join us for a drive to the coast of Sicily, where we’ll arrive at the quaint fishing village of Sferracavallo. You’ll have the chance to sample a delicious fishermen’s feast, accompanied by wine and soft drinks.
Adult Price: €60
A fantastic Sicilian evening, you’ll enjoy a dinner of Southern Italian specialities with musical entertainment.
Adult Price: €64
Discover rustic village life with your Local Specialist as we visit Savoca, the Sicilian setting for 'The Godfather'. Enjoy the stunning views before a visit to Vitelli's bar, featured in the film and famous for 'granita di limone'. Later, you’ll journey up Mt Etna, one of the most intriguing volcanoes in the world.
Adult Price: €56
Climb by minibus to the heights of Castelmola, above Taormina, to enjoy the best views of this magical part of Sicily. You'll enjoy wandering the cobbled streets with interesting shops and cafes. Then, dine in a restaurant that has the best view in Sicily, with wine included.
Adult Price: €68
Experience Capri's spectacular cliffs, famous turquoise waters and white grotto the best way: by boat. In Capri town, enjoy a lemon granita, a specialty of the island. Or if the weather doesn't allow, we'll take you on a tour of the island to Anacapri, and a visit to Villa San Michele.
Adult Price: €42
Join us for an evening of Neapolitan specialities at one of our favourite family-run restaurants. While you’re wined and dined, enjoy a cultural experience performed by local artists who'll take centre stage and demonstrate the famous Tarantella dance.
Adult Price: €61
A scenic drive takes you through the Sorrentino countryside to an 18th century Olive Oil mill. You’ll enjoy a guided visit of the gardens, mill and wine cellar, followed by a simple meal of traditional pizza and wine. And there'll also be the chance to see how mozzarella and pizza are made.
Adult Price: €49
Come with us for a drive along the famous Amalfi Coast. You’ll have a chance to visit the exclusive artists’ paradise of Positano, which is magnificently positioned on the Mediterranean coast.
Adult Price: €43
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