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Stylish Milan is our launch pad to the Lake District where we spend the first night of our At Leisure jaunt through Italy. After arriving in Como, unwind and soak up the peaceful atmosphere. Admire the mesmerising reflection of the surrounding peaks in its deep blue waters which makes this one of Italy's most soul-stirring settings. Enjoy a leisurely stroll past exquisite lakeside villas and gardens before meeting your travel companions and Travel Director for a Welcome Reception. Tonight, you'll stay at one of Trafalgar's Stays With Stories and a Lake Como institution, frequented by local aristocrats since the late 19th-century.
The runways of Milan take centre stage today as we explore the fashion capital of Italy. Join a Local Specialist to see the iconic and unexpected highlights of this hard-working city. View the exquisite Gothic architecture of the Duomo, with its massive stained glass windows, the neo-classical La Scala Opera House and ornate Galleria with its imposing iron and glass-domed roof - of course, all in the company of the trendsetting Milanese.
The tragic story of Shakespeare's star-crossed lovers is revealed during our visit to romantic Verona, where we will view Juliet's Balcony and the ancient Roman Arena, still in use today. Indulge in a leisurely cappuccino stop in the city's beautiful Piazza Bra, admiring the imposing bronze statue of King Victor Emanuel II. Or shop up a storm on trendy Via Mazzini before continuing to Venice, where we will spend the next two nights.
Glide through the canals of Venice by private launch visiting some of the jewels in the crown of the 'Queen of the Adriatic'. Dive Into Culture and witness the centuries-old Venetian tradition of glassmaking. Then it's on to St. Mark's Square to admire the profound beauty of the Doge's Palace and St. Mark's Basilica. See the Bridge of Sighs, so named because of the sound prisoners would make when taking one last longing look at their beloved city before being imprisoned. Spend the rest of the day at leisure, or consider an Optional Experience to the colourful fishing island of Burano.
From Venice, we cross the Apennine Mountains to Florence, the 'Cradle of the Renaissance'. Consider joining your Travel Director for a traditional Florentine dinner in the heart of the Chianti Hills.
This morning we join a Local Specialist on a leisurely walking tour to delve into the culture and history of Florence. We'll visit the Piazza del Duomo to view the multi-coloured marble Cattedrale di Santa Maria del Fiore, Piazza della Signoria with its exquisite art and palazzi, and the Ponte Vecchio bridge that has straddled the Arno River for almost 700 years. Admire spectacular views of the city from Piazzale Michelangelo. Later, learn about the quality and workmanship of two of this city's historic industries at demonstrations of Florentine leathercraft and 18-carat gold. This afternoon, consider an Optional Experience to the Fine Arts Academy to see Michelangelo's 'David'. Join your fellow travellers this evening for an opportunity to Connect With Locals over dinner at a Be My Guest experience set against the backdrop of Tuscan vineyards and olive groves.
Journey south through the Arno Valley, passing the Bay of Naples bound for Maiori on the Amalfi Coast, where we will spend the next three nights. This evening we dine at our hotel.
This morning travel to Amalfi, perched perfectly on this dramatic stretch of coastline. See the 10th-century Sant'Andrea cathedral in the heart of the town, with its beautifully striped Byzantine façade, and soak up the laid-back atmosphere. You'll also have time to join an Optional Experience to Positano.
Relax at your hotel on the Amalfi Coast or wander past fragrant lemon terraces. You have a full free day to indulge in your heart's desires - consider a fresh seafood lunch, from sea to table, or take a dip in the welcoming, warm Mediterranean waters.
Embark on a Small Group Sightseeing walking tour with a Local Specialist and discover the lost city of Pompeii, which was buried under volcanic ash when Mount Vesuvius erupted. Continue to the 'Eternal City' of Rome later, enjoying views of the 6th-century Benedictine Abbey in Cassino en route. Spend the evening exploring the extraordinary heritage of Rome, which spans millennia, or consider an Optional Experience to see the exquisite art and architecture of what was once the capital of the world.
Spend the morning in the Vatican City with a Local Specialist, visiting the imposing St. Peter's Basilica to view Michelangelo's sorrowful Pietà. Consider an Optional Experience to the Vatican Museums and Sistine Chapel with its exquisite frescoed ceilings crafted by Michelangelo. Then, cross the Tiber into Ancient Rome to see the Circus Maximus, once the site of exhilarating chariot races that entertained thousands, and visit the impressive Colosseum. This afternoon we have time to explore the city on our own terms. Perhaps toss a coin in the Trevi Fountain to secure your return to Rome, soak up the coffee aromas on Piazza Navona or wander through the ruins of Palatine Hill.
Indulge in a full free day to explore the passionate embrace of the city and its zesty locals. Ease into la dolce vita, or consider an Optional Experience to Tivoli, where you can visit Villa d'Este with its magnificent Renaissance gardens and exquisite fountains. This evening, we enjoy a Farewell Dinner with newfound friends and your Travel Director before bidding arrivederci to Rome.
Our unforgettable encounter with Italy comes to an end today. Find out more about your free airport transfer at trafalgar.com/freetransfers.
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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.
A fantastic opportunity to take in some of the highlights of elegant Milan. Amongst other sights, we'll visit La Scala, the world's most famous opera house, where Giuseppe Verdi, Maria Callas and others have left their mark. Our wonderful Local Specialist will bring the city’s eventful past to life.
Adult Price: € 45
On this visit to the shores of Lake Como, you’ll witness many beautiful villages and villas that retain true Italian charm. From the lakeside, a private boat will take us to visit the gem of the lake, Bellagio. We've also left some time to stroll and to shop.
Adult Price: € 39
Join us for a breathtaking 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 that 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 admire magnificent mosaics in one of the most ornate churches in the world.
Adult Price: € 36
This afternoon, discover the Venetian Lagoon by private boat. You'll enjoy a delicious meal, with a selection of drinks, on the fishermen's island of Burano, famous for its multi-colored houses - a photographer's paradise.
Adult Price: € 72
This evening we'll take a scenic drive to experience a fun and relaxed evening at a friendly, family restaurant in the Tuscan countryside. After a welcome drink in the historic courtyard, the renowned local chef will delight your senses with regional dishes, made with traditional ingredients from the nearby produce markets. The excellent wines come from the Saraceni family vineyards and there's live music and song to complete the atmosphere. In short, a Tuscan dream come true in an authentic setting.
Adult Price: € 65
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 to 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: € 65
Enjoy an insight into the world of Michelangelo and his masterpiece, David. We'll visit the Academy of Fine Arts and its Michelangelo collection, where you'll learn all about the life and works of this immortal Renaissance genius through the expert commentary of our Local Specialist. This optional is subject to availability and involves reservations and entrance prepayments. Should you decide to cancel this optional, a 50% cancellation fee will be incurred.
Adult Price: € 47
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
Join us as we take in delightful villages and spectacular scenery along the incredible Amalfi Coast. You’ll visit the celebrated town of Positano, which is also a Unesco World Heritage site. There will be time to shop for local goods or enjoy a drink in a cafe overlooking the beach.
Adult Price: € 58
Join us on a trip to the balcony of the Amalfi coast. Ravello is perched high above the terraced groves with breathtaking views. Your Local Specialist will show you the gardens of the Villa Rufolo, which inspired Wagner, and you’ll have free time to visit the 11th-century cathedral.
Adult Price: € 40
Come with us for a short drive to a restaurant we know and love on the Amalfi Coast. You'll get to try some favorite local dishes and drinks, all served alongside Neapolitan hospitality and beautiful views.
Adult Price: € 64
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
Join us for an extension to your included sightseeing tour, which gives you a chance to see the artistic masterpieces collected and commissioned by the Popes. With our Local Specialist, we'll visit the Tapestry Gallery, Gallery of Maps and the Sistine Chapel. Michelangelo spent four years preparing the vault and altar wall, and we'll give you plenty of time to admire just how much painstaking work went into his creations. This optional involves reservation and entrance pre-payments. Cancellation within 24 hours will incur a 50% cancellation fee.
Adult Price: € 58
Tonight, spend a lively evening with us in Rome. After a short drive, we'll arrive at a characteristic trattoria to relax and enjoy a typical Italian meal, soaking up The Eternal City's unique atmosphere all the while.
Adult Price: € 62
Join us on an exploration of Rome's past with our Local Specialist. On this trip, you'll visit the Catacombs, where the early Christians assembled to escape persecution and which were used as underground cemeteries. We’ll also pass by the pyramid of Cestius and the baths of Caracalla.
Adult Price: € 39
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
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