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Contrasts of Italy

Operated by: Trafalgar

10 Days from $2,835 per person
APR - OCT 2023
Rialto Bridge in Venice, Italy, at night

Countries Visited

Italy, Vatican City ...more Italy, Vatican City

Locations Visited

Rome, Vatican, Florence, Pisa, Venice ...more Rome, Vatican, Florence, Pisa, Venice
  1. Day 1 Welcome to Rome

    Benvenuti a Roma where we begin our exciting journey through some of Italy's most beautiful cities. Spend time relaxing after your travels or take a walk along the ancient streets, tracing centuries of art, antiquities and culture before joining your travel companions and Travel Director for a Welcome Reception and orientation drive through Rome's intoxicating cityscape.

    meals Welcome Reception
    hotel Grand Palatino
  2. Day 2 Explore Ancient Rome and the Vatican City Dive Into Culture

    We visit the centre of Christianity this morning, joining a Local Specialist for a sightseeing tour which includes a visit to the imposing St. Peter's Basilica to see the Pietà, Michelangelo's masterpiece carved from the most 'perfect' block of marble. Our next stop is in Ancient Rome where we’ll visit the Colosseum. Here gladiators and slaves met their end in a blaze of glory. See the Circus Maximus before returning to the Holy See this afternoon. Dive Into Culture and gain priority admission to the Vatican Museums where a Local Specialist will take us on a guided tour. Admire Michelangelo's magnificent frescoed ceiling in the Sistine Chapel when it is less crowded, followed by dinner in the midst of the treasures of the Vatican's Anima Mundi Museum.

    meals Breakfast, Regional Dinner
    hotel Grand Palatino
  3. Day 3 Rome Your Way

    Enjoy a full free day in Rome or consider spending some in beautiful Tivoli. Join an Optional Experience to see the exquisite house and gardens of the 16th-century Villa d'Este – a marvellous example of Renaissance landscape architecture. As the sun sets over the seven hills of Rome, people-watch in one of Rome’s beautiful squares or admire the Trevi Fountain, tossing a coin in to secure your return to Rome.

    meals Breakfast
    hotel Grand Palatino
  4. Day 4 Journey By High-Speed Train to Florence

    Sit back on the high-speed train, bound for Florence, and watch the Tuscan landscape go by. Join a Local Specialist on a walking tour to gain insights into the city's Renaissance treasures. View the Ponte Vecchio, almost 700 years old and lined with goldsmiths, then visit the Fine Arts Academy to see one of Michelangelo's masterpieces, the statue of David. Our love affair with Florence continues as we stroll to the Piazza della Signoria, featuring Palazzo Vecchio and the Uffizi Gallery.

    meals Breakfast
    hotel Ambasciatori
  5. Day 5 Admire Pisa Connect with Locals

    Cross the Arno River and see the enchanting skyline of Florence from Piazzale Michelangelo before driving to Pisa through the Arno Valley. Meet your Local Specialist to explore the Square of Miracles and see the famous Leaning Tower, the Cathedral, Baptistery and Camposanto, built on soil brought back from the Holy Land during the Crusades. Over lunch, Connect With Locals at the Agriturismo Borgo Vigna Vecchia where you’ll enjoy an exclusive Be My Guest experience surrounded by vineyards and olive groves. This evening, stroll along the Arno River in search of the perfect gelato, see the beautifully lit Duomo or visit a cosy enoteca for some wine tasting.

    meals Breakfast, Be My Guest
    hotel Ambasciatori
  6. Day 6 Discover Renaissance Florence

    Today is yours to discover the beauty and elegance of Florence – a city filled with exquisite galleries, lush gardens and opulent palaces. Consider a visit to the hilltop town of San Gimignano, the 'medieval Manhattan' of Tuscany. Venture outside the city to see Tuscan villages and taste rich panforte and tortas, or shop for the latest fashions in Florence's sophisticated boutiques. This evening, consider joining an Optional Experience in the Chianti region for a delicious Tuscan dinner.

    meals Breakfast
    hotel Ambasciatori
  7. Day 7 Travel By High-Speed Train to Venice

    All aboard the express train for Venice. We cross the spectacular Apennines and fertile Veneto plain before arriving in this island city. Get lost this afternoon, wandering its narrow lanes in search of a cosy bacaro, people-watch in St. Mark's Square, the gateway to Venice, or take an unforgettable gondola ride along the city's enchanting canals.

    meals Breakfast
    hotel Principe
  8. Day 8 Cruise the Canals of Venice Make Travel Matter

    This morning, breathe in the salty sea air as you board a private launch and cruise to St. Mark's Square to see the Bridge of Sighs, Palladian Churches, the Customs House, St. Mark's Basilica and Campanile, as well as the Doge's Palace. Later, we enjoy an unforgettable MAKE TRAVEL MATTER® Experience, witnessing first-hand the centuries-old craft of glassblowing. You may be tempted to buy a souvenir or two after admiring the talent and skill of the master craftsmen, passed down from generation to generation. This afternoon, enjoy free time to explore the city on your own terms, perhaps finding a quiet campo and pavement café or take a cruise to colourful Burano for a delicious meal.

    meals Breakfast
    hotel Principe
  9. Day 9 Experience Venice’s Food Market

    The sights and sounds of modern Venice come to life today as we join our Local Specialist for a walking tour and explore the vibrant Rialto Food Market, which has been feeding Venetians since the 11th century. We wander through the narrow calli - seeing the ornate façades of merchant houses that line the canals, before enjoying an afternoon at leisure for one last taste of Venice. Our adventure through Italy's charming cities is about to come to an end. We celebrate newfound friendships and an unforgettable experience at a Farewell Dinner.

    meals Breakfast, Farewell Dinner
    hotel Principe
  10. Day 10 Farewell Venice

    Say arrivederci to Italy and your fellow travellers as your fascinating holiday comes to an end. Find out more about your free airport transfer at trafalgar.com/freetransfers.

    meals Breakfast
Contrasts Italy Guided Tour Map
Price Includes

Whats Included

  • An expert Travel Director and professional Driver
  • Cherry-picked hotels, all tried and trusted
  • All porterage and restaurant gratuities
  • All hotel tips, charges and local taxes
  • Breakfast daily and up to half of your evening meals
  • Must-see sightseeing and surprise extras
  • Audio headsets for flexible sightseeing
  • Luxury air-conditioned coach with Wi-Fi in most countries or alternative transportation (such as rail journeys)
  • High-speed train from Rome to Florence
  • High-speed train from Florence to Venice
  • Optional Experiences and free time

Dining Summary

  • 1 Welcome Reception (WR)
  • 9 Breakfast (B)
  • 1 Regional Dinner (RD)
  • 1 Be My Guest (BMG)
  • 1 Farewell Dinner (FD)

Be My Guest

  • Florence: Enjoy an exclusive Be My Guest lunch at the Agriturismo Borgo Vigna Vecchia in the Tuscan hills.

Dive Into Culture

  • Rome: Enjoy a private visit inside the Vatican where you will tour the Museo Gregoriano Profano featuring Roman and Ancient Greek antiquities before an exclusive private dinner.
  • Venice: Savour the vibrant atmosphere of Venice during a visit to a traditional food market in the shadow of the famous Rialto Bridge.

Iconic Experience

  • Rome: During an orientation with your Travel Director see the medieval buildings, Renaissance palaces and Baroque churches scattered throughout the city.
  • Vatican: Visit Vatican City and tour St. Peter's Basilica with a Local Specialist. Witness the early genius of Michelangelo as you take in the Pietà.
  • Rome: Visit the Colosseum, still echoing with the thronging crowds and ghostly cries of gladiatorial combat.
  • Florence: Join a Local Specialist to view the multi-coloured marble cathedral, bell tower and baptistery, adorned by Ghiberti's Gates of Paradise. Visit the political heart of the city, Signoria Square.
  • Florence: Admire the enchanting Tuscan landscape as you travel by high-speed train to Florence.
  • Pisa: During an orientation, your Travel Director will show you the baptistery, cathedral and the famous Leaning Tower of Pisa.
  • Venice: Journey by high-speed train past dramatic mountains and lush plains to ''La Serenissima''.

MAKE TRAVEL MATTER®

  • Venice: Learn about the history and ancient skill of Venetian glassblowing, playing your role in ensuring the survival of this traditional craft through your visit.

Must-see Highlights

  • : VIP Admission to the Vatican Museums
  • : Explore Rome, Florence, Pisa and Venice with a Local Specialist
  • : Visit St. Peter's Basilica, the Sistine Chapel and the Colosseum in Rome, the Academy of Fine Arts in Florence and a glassblowing factory in Venice
  • : View the ancient sites in Rome, the Santa Croce Basilica and the Duomo in Florence, the Leaning Tower of Pisa and St. Mark's Basilica in Venice
  • : Scenic Cruise by private launch to St. Mark's Square in Venice

Whats Included

  • : An expert Travel Director and professional Driver
  • : Cherry-picked hotels, all tried and trusted
  • : All porterage and restaurant gratuities
  • : All hotel tips, charges and local taxes
  • : Breakfast daily and up to half of your evening meals
  • : Must-see sightseeing and surprise extras
  • : Audio headsets for flexible sightseeing
  • : Luxury air-conditioned coach with Wi-Fi in most countries or alternative transportation (such as rail journeys)
  • : High-speed train from Rome to Florence
  • : High-speed train from Florence to Venice
  • : Optional Experiences and free time

Dates & Prices

Prices shown are per person based on two people sharing a twin room. To request a personalized travel quote, click "Request Quote" and a Travel Specialist will send your custom quote including airfare if requested.

Online Booking Process

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April 2023
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Optional Add-Ons

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.

Rome

Available on Day 3

Piazzas and Fountains

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 center, leading to highlights such as the Trevi Fountain and the Pantheon, as well as hidden corners of the Eternal City.
Adult Price: € 33

Roman Delights With Dinner

Tonight, relax and enjoy typical Italian cuisine, soaking up Rome's unique atmosphere in a characteristic trattoria with drinks and music.
Adult Price: € 51

Tivoli And Gardens Of The Villa D’Este

Visit the ancient Sabine town of Tivoli with our Local Specialist to enjoy the gardens and fountains of the Villa D’Este. We'll see its grottos and pavilions, the Avenue of a Hundred Fountains, and the Dragon Fountain of the Organ.
Adult Price: € 46

Florence

Available on Day 5

Discover Palazzo Vecchio

Marvel at the legacy of the Medici as you visit Palazzo Vecchio, the symbol of Florence's political power for over seven centuries. With our Local Specialist, we’ll visit the wonderful "Hall of the Five Hundred", dedicated to the Medici popes. We’ll also visit rooms decorated with masterpieces by famous artists of the Renaissance like Michelangelo and Donatello.
Adult Price: € 42

Available on Day 6

Dinner, Wine And Music In The Tuscan Hills

This evening we'll take a scenic drive to experience a fun and relaxed evening at a friendly, typical restaurant in the countryside. The chef will delight our senses with regional dishes, made with freshly-bought ingredients from the local farmers' markets. Your delicious meal will be accompanied by excellent wines from the vineyards for which this area is so well known. In short, a Tuscan dream come true in an authentic setting.
Adult Price: € 65

Visit To San Gimignano

Join us for a panoramic drive to the nearby hilltop town of San Gimignano with our Local Specialist. Magnificently preserved from the Middle Ages, this little town, known as the 'Medieval Manhattan,' is one of the most beautiful in Italy - a true gem.
Adult Price: € 36

Tuscan Dinner at Villa Machiavelli

Through the Chianti hills, we'll drive past vineyards 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 a 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.
Adult Price: € 68

Venice

Available on Day 7

Gondolas & the Grand Canal

Join us for a breathtaking cruise by private water taxi along Venice's Grand Canal. You'll admire the magnificent palazzi, as well as catch 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: € 76

Available on Day 8

Lagoon Cruise to Burano with Food and Drinks

This afternoon, discover the Venetian Lagoon by private boat. You'll enjoy a delicious meal, with a selection of drinks, on the fisherman's island of Burano, famous for its multi-colored houses - a photographer's paradise.
Adult Price: € 72

Available on Day 9

Doge's Palace and St. Mark's Basilica

Accompanied by a Local Specialist, you'll visit the magnificent Doge's Palace and its elegant courtyards, which were home to the rulers of the Venetian republic. Afterward, enjoy a visit to the Byzantine Basilica of St. Mark the Evangelist, patron saint of Venice.
Adult Price: € 55

Reviews
Service
Vacation
Independent Reviews
Joann Farrell
Thursday, October 27, 2022
Service
I asked for a direct flight from Philadelphia to Rome was told no such flights existed on the day I was to leave. Untrue as six other couples left from Philadelphia on the same day and returned to Philadelphia where I had to waste time in airports for a connecting flight. Very disappointed as I thought the agent was to help me with the best experience. Once in Italy the travel director was awesome
Response from Grand European Travel:
Our Air Department always books the most direct flights available at the time you book your trip. It's possible the nonstop flight was not available. We apologize for the inconvenience, but are happy to hear that you enjoyed your trip overall.
Monday, November 21, 2022
Vacation
Trip was awesome thanks to Giuseppe and Pino. More should be included with the tour as opposed to all the extra money for side trips to major sites.
Trusted Customer
Wednesday, October 26, 2022
Service
My experience with GET was gret. My travel specialist was responsive and knowledgeable.
Response from Grand European Travel:
We are super excited to hear you enjoyed your tour of Italy. Thank you for choosing GET to help you plan and book your vacation. We appreciate your business and your feedback. Take care!
Wednesday, November 2, 2022
Vacation
The travel director, driver, and well being specialist were all AWESOME! Trafalgar tour was great. The hotels were just ok
Dennis Kreson
Monday, October 3, 2022
Service
There were no surprises. From flights to info from our Travel Director to flights to return home all was Great!
Response from Grand European Travel:
Oh my goodness! It sounds like your trip to Italy was just an outstanding experience! We are sure you came home with memories that will last a lifetime. Thank you so much for letting us be a part of your Italy experience. We truly appreciate your business and your feedback.
Tuesday, October 11, 2022
Vacation
Trafalgar did everything so we just had to enjoy the trip. Every detail of the trip from hotels, dinners, excursions, sites, tickets and knowing when to visit to avoid the crowds, bus and train travel all seamless and made the trip memorable by our Travel Director and the Local Experts. An average person or above average person could not have put together the complete agenda to visit Rome, Florence and Venice and surrounding areas in 9 days and see everything we did and experience the local food and hospitality of the cities.
Trusted Customer
Wednesday, June 15, 2022
Service
They are available and answer questions.
Response from Grand European Travel:
We are so sorry to hear your luggage was lost, but it sounds like you made the best of it and still enjoyed your trip to Italy. Thank you for taking the time to write a review. We appreciate your feedback.
Wednesday, June 22, 2022
Vacation
We had a wonderful time. Fabrizio was a wonderful tour guid and went out of his way to make our trip wonderful. Our luggage was lost. He helped us find the shops we needed to replace essentials and translated for us. Our specialists were knowledgeable and had great facts. It was a wonderful trip!
Margaret Baldwin
Wednesday, July 18, 2018
Service
Contrasts of Italy was a wonderful trip, much of it due to the expertise and personality of our guide Tony! There was a variety of excursions as well as time to explore on one's own. I highly recommend it if you want to spend time in Rome, Florence and Venice.
Response from Grand European Travel:
We're so glad to hear you had such a wonderful time on your trip through Italy! Thank you for sharing and for being a part of our travel family.
Wednesday, July 18, 2018
Vacation
Great value for cost - I would travel again with GET.
Wallace Baldwin
Wednesday, July 18, 2018
Service
Tony Cacace, our travel director was excellent and extremely adapt at making everyone in the group feel comfortable. Our hotel in Rome was very well located making sightseeing very easy during our free time. The boat ride and lunch on the island in Venice was a huge hit with everyone.
Vacation
I think the trip was a good value. I also liked being able to prepay tips and making some side trips an optional choice rather than inclusive. We took most but not all optional trips so we could rest or do something else if we wanted. Traveling by train was a real plus also as it cut out some long bus rides and maximized our time sightseeing.
Trusted Customer
Wednesday, July 5, 2017
Service
Our tour guide Paolo was outstanding. He was personable and well organized, making sure we were on time, while personalizing our experiences. The optional tours were excellent as well.
Vacation
the only improvement would be a upgraded hotels. I would be willing to pay more for that improvement.
Julia Boylan
Wednesday, June 7, 2017
Service
Contrasts of Italy was our second tour with Trafalgar. They exceeded our expectations in Italy. All of our needs were taken care of by our wonderful director Gordon Spicer. Trafalgar handles the hassles of luggage, check in and check out of hotels, admission into touring sites, transportation and so much more. They give VIP access at touring sites. No long lines waiting. Our hotels had great locations, were comfortable, clean, and offered surprisingly great breakfasts every morning. Staying three nights in each city made the tour comfortable and more relaxing than changing hotels frequently. Taking the train to travel in between cities saved so much time. We highly recommend this tour. You will not be disappointed! If you go and are offered the optional dinner at the Machiavelli villa and vineyard, don't miss it!
Response from Grand European Travel:
Thanks for taking the time to write.  We're glad you enjoyed this unique train trip through Italy! Your review will help other customers in their search for a great experience.
Friday, June 9, 2017
Vacation
This tour offered many optional experiences, some we purchased, some we did not. We liked having free time in each city to explore on our own.
Elaine Goldberg
Thursday, May 25, 2017
Service
This was the most amazing vacation I've taken. The tour director, hotels, sights, local specialists, bus, train....everything was planned perfectly and I will never forget this trip. Thank you, Grand European Travel and Trafalgar Tours!
Vacation
Perfect trip; number of days, travel by high-speed train, hotels. Very good value for the price of the trip.
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