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Welcome to Venice. After meeting with your Travel Director, you may wish to explore the city.
Watch the Venetian craftsmen at work creating local specialties at a glassblowing workshop on Giudecca Island. Then cruise by private launch to St. Mark's Square in the heart of Venice. Admire the Bridge of Sighs, the ornate Doge's Palace and visit the Byzantine Basilica of St. Mark. Spend time afterwards exploring the city or perhaps take a cruise across the lagoon to the island of Burano for a relaxing meal amidst the backdrop of brightly colored houses.
On arrival in Padua, our Local Specialist takes us to the Basilica of St. Anthony and shows us the tomb and relics of the patron saint of Lost and Found. After some free time for prayers, we cross the Apennine Mountains, arriving later in Florence. Relax at your hotel this evening.
There are few cities in the world with an artistic legacy equal to that of Florence. Your Local Specialist shares a superb commentary of the city's history during your walking tour, which includes views of the Baptistery, see the cathedral of Santa Maria del Fiore and the impressive Piazza della Signoria. Experience a demonstration of fine leatherwork with time to explore on your own. Shop for high-quality leather and 18-carat gold jewelry for which Florence is renowned and don't forget to try the gelato.
Continue south to Siena, where we meet our Local Specialist for a walking tour of the city. Stroll through ancient cobbled streets to Piazza del Campo where the colorful Palio horse race takes place every year. Visit the Basilica of St. Dominic and learn about St. Catherine of Siena. Enjoy some free time before we continue to the mystical town of Assisi, built on the fertile slopes of Mount Subasio in Umbria, home to St. Francis and St. Clare. Relax at your hotel this evening.
Your Local Specialist reveals a town that has changed little since the time of St. Francis, who was born here in 1182. We visit the Basilicas of St. Francis, St. Clare and St. Mary of the Angels and the Porziuncola. We then travel to the Carceri Hermitage where St. Francis came to pray and visit the Monastery of St. Damian. Later enjoy some free time in Assisi.
We visit the Loreto Sanctuary and the Holy House, one of the prominent Marian Shrines in the world. We continue to Lanciano, home of the Eucharistic Miracle, and visit the Church of St. Francis. Heading to San Giovanni Rotondo, home of St. Pio until his death.
After Mass this morning we join our Local Specialist this morning and visit the Santa Maria Della Grazie, the friary of Padre Pio which includes his confessional, cell and tomb. Later drive to see the shrine of Monte Sant' Angelo, one of the worlds most celebrated shrines and where St. Michael the Archangel appeared in 490, 492 and 1656.
We stop in Pietrelcina, birthplace of Padre Pio. Continuing onto Rome, where we enjoy dinner at our hotel.
This morning attend the Papal Audience (subject to availability) for a chance to see the Pope and receive the Papal Blessing. Later we visit St. Paul Outside the Walls, one of Rome's four major basilicas and also the burial site of St. Paul the Apostle, Next we visit St. John Lateran Basilica, built by Constantine the Great, and visit the Santa Scala (Holy Stairs) to see the 28 stairs which are traditionally ascended in a kneeling position with a prayer dedicated to Jesus Christ. Finally we visit St. Mary Major Basilica.
Don't miss the opportunity to join an Optional Experience to the famous Sistine Chapel and Vatican Museums. Later your Local Specialist takes you on a sightseeing tour starting with a visit to the Vatican City and the awe-inspiring St. Peter's Basilica to view Michelangelo's statue, the Pietà. Cross the Tiber to view the mighty Colosseum and see the ancient sites of Rome. This evening in Rome you might like to celebrate the end of your vacation in style.
Say goodbye to your companions after a memorable pilgrimage. Transfers to Rome Airport are available. Conditions apply.
11 Nights accommodations, 11 Buffet breakfasts, 5 Three-course dinners, .
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.
Come with us on a private boat trip to the lagoon in Venice and you'll see the island of Murano, where the renowned glassblowers live. You'll enjoy lunch with drinks at the nearby ‘Island of the Fishermen,' Burano, which is famous for its multi-colored houses and a photographer's paradise.
Adult Price: €72
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
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 favorites 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
Enjoy an insight into the world of Michelangelo and his masterpiece, David. We 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 involves reservations and entrance prepayments. If you decide to cancel this optional, a 50% cancellation fee will be incurred.
Adult Price: €47
Join us for a drive to the nearby hilltop town of San Gimignano, known as the ‘medieval Manhattan' of Tuscany. Surrounded by fields of sunflowers, vineyards and olive groves, this is Italy's best preserved medieval city and will give you a taste of day-to-day life in Italy during the Middle Ages.
Adult Price: €36
Join us for a delicious taste of Italian specialties, including wine, in the friendly and warm atmosphere of a local restaurant in the old town center of San Giovanni Rotondo.
Adult Price: €45
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
Spend an evening getting to know Rome. We’ll take you via coach where you’ll have the chance to see some of the city’s much-loved sights. Afterward, you’ll enjoy a delicious light dinner of Italian specialties, alongside local music and drinks.
Adult Price: €51
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