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Treasures of Italy

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Tour Pace: Comfortable
Cinque Terre, Italy
Tour Style: Premium
12 Days from $3,195 per person

This tour immerses you in Italy's historic cities, idyllic fishing villages, islands, lakes, and canals, heritage buildings, inspiring art, fabulous food and breathtaking scenery.

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  1. Board your overnight flight to Europe (not included).
  2. Rome is the former religious, political and commercial heart of a vast empire. You will be met on arrival at Rome's Fiumicino Leonardo da Vinci Airport. At 09:30, 12:30 & 15:30 your transfer departs for your hotel. Later, join your Tour Director for a Welcome Reception and the opportunity to mingle and get to know each other over a pleasant evening of dinner and wine.
    meal(s):WD
    hotel:Romanico Palace, Rome (2 nights).
  3. In the morning, you will be joined by a Local Expert to lead you through the priceless art collection of the Vatican Museums culminating beneath Michelangelo's famous ceiling in the Sistine Chapel. Your VIP visit includes fast-track entry and a behind-the-scenes look at the Bramante Staircase, a part of the Vatican closed to the general public. More of Michelangelo's genius is on display next door in St. Peter's Basilica. There's free time to do as the Romans do, or perhaps join a tour inside the Colosseum. Rome is about art, antiquity, piazzas and pizzazz, and our included walking tour this afternoon has it in abundance. Toss a coin into the spectacular Trevi Fountain, see the Pantheon, the best preserved monument from the Roman period, and enjoy free time for dinner in Piazza Navona.

    Saturday departures will visit the Vatican and St Peters Basilica on Day 3.

    meal(s):BB
    hotel:Romanico Palace, Rome.
  4. Journey to the ill-fated town of Pompeii, frozen in time when it was engulfed by an eruption of Vesuvius in 79AD. Walk with a Local Expert through the cobbled streets to learn about Roman life in the first century before enjoying a refreshing lemon granita. Then continue to the Bay of Naples and board your hydrofoil to the Isle of Capri. In brilliant sunshine, enjoy a scenic drive by open-top taxi past orange and lemon groves to your hotel, then appreciate the glorious vistas over the rugged coastline and sparkling sea.

    Saturday departures will visit Pompeii on Day 5.

    meal(s):BB
    hotel:La Residenza, Capri (2 nights).
  5. Wake up refreshed on this delightful island. Visit Capri town, with its whitewashed houses, winding alleyways and small cafes. A Local Expert escorts you to the luxuriant Caesar Augustus Gardens for views of the Faraglioni rocks. The afternoon is yours to devote to Capri's fashionable boutiques, craft shops and artisans studios. As the glow of twilight descends and the day-trippers have gone home, the island is yours to saunter along scenic paths, gather with the locals in the piazzetta or relax with a glass of wine at an al-fresco restaurant.
    meal(s):BB
    hotel:La Residenza, Capri.
  6. Descend to the port by open-top taxi and take the hydrofoil across the bay to Naples. Follow the ‘Motorway of the Sun', north past Rome, through the Province of Umbria. Continue through idyllic Tuscan landscapes to Florence, centre of art and culture, and heart of the Italian Renaissance.
    meal(s):BB, DW
    hotel:Hotel Londra, Florence (2 nights).
  7. Join a Local Expert for a walking tour of the historic center. Visit the Accademia Museum to see Michelangelo's masterpiece statue, 'David'. See Giotto's bell tower and the 'Gates of Paradise' which adorn the baptistery. Visit the Piazza della Signoria - an open-air museum and still the political heart of Florence. Stroll on to Piazza Santa Croce, famous for its basilica and leather goods. The joys of Florence are varied so the afternoon will be free for your own personal exploration.

    meal(s):BB
    hotel:Hotel Londra, Florence.
  8. The famous Italian Riviera and the Cinque Terre - a highlight of your journey as a UNESCO World Heritage site and one of Italy's most beautiful landscapes. With a Local Expert, appreciate the views as you approach one of the picturesque fishing villages by boat. Spend some time exploring the old medieval quarter or the popular sandy beach before continuing along to the elegant seaside village of Portofino, epitome of La Dolce Vita. Admire the colourful houses, browse the boutiques or stay a while in the cafe bars on the piazzetta and watch the yachts moored in the harbour. Weather permitting, return along the rugged Ligurian coast by boat to the resort of Santa Margherita.
    meal(s):BB, DW
    hotel:Best Western Regina Elena, Santa Margherita.
  9. In the morning, head north to the beautiful Italian Lake District, a favourite retreat of the rich and famous where alpine scenery combines with luxuriant subtropical vegetation. Relax and enjoy an afternoon at leisure at this popular resort and beautiful lake or perhaps take a cruise out to the lovely Borromean Islands? For your dining pleasure, you are invited to choose from a selection of local restaurants.
    meal(s):BB, DA
    hotel:Grand Hotel Dino/Simplon Hotel, Baveno, Lake Maggiore.
  10. Follow the southern fringes of the European Alps to the vineyards, close to the shores of Lake Iseo. Winemaking traditions run deep here and you will get to taste the delicious vintages produced with a master vintner at a family-owned estate. Continue to Verona, the setting for one of history's most romantic love stories. Walk with your Tour Director to Juliet's balcony in the inner courtyard of the Capulet home and see the well-preserved Roman Arena, still used for open-air opera performances. Head on to the unique city of Venice - a complete step back in time to the 16th century. In the evening, celebrate your tour finalé with good food, good wine and good company in a magical setting.
    meal(s):BB, CD
    hotel:Boscolo Venezia/Bauer Palladio, Venice (2 nights).
  11. Cruise to a traditional arts centre on the island of Giudecca to admire the art of glassblowing. Visit St. Mark's Square where the city's former wealth and power is evidenced by the riches of St. Mark's Basilica. Also admire the Doge's Palace and its adjoining Bridge of Sighs. Take your seat in a traditional gondola for a serenade through the myriad of beautiful canals. Relax and enjoy the atmosphere, music and songs as you drift along in romantic awe.
    meal(s):BB
    hotel:Boscolo Venezia/Bauer Palladio, Venice.
  12. Alas, you must bid farewell to this enchanting city. Your departure transfer arrives at Venice Airport at 08:00 and 09:30.
    meal(s):BB
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30 Day Refund Guarantee

We promise you’ll enjoy a stress-free travel experience from the minute you start your vacation planning or we’ll refund your deposit. Make your reservation with a $350 deposit. If you change your mind for any reason within 30 days of booking, we’ll offer you a full refund.

2018 Preview

Preview itineraries and content are based on selected vacations featured in our 2017 Collection, however, items such as (but not limited to), hotels, meals, sightseeing inclusions, trip destinations, transfers and transportation, are subject to change. The final composition of your trip will be published in our 2018 Collection due out in September. By paying your deposit, you are agreeing to accept the finalized version of your trip itinerary.

  • Professional Travel Director Professional Travel Director
  • Sightseeing with Local Experts Sightseeing with Local Experts
  • VIP Access VIP Access
  • WIFI on Coach and in Hotels WIFI on Coach and in Hotels
  • Cultural Enrichment Cultural Enrichment
  • Expertly Selected Hotels Expertly Selected Hotels
  • Hotel Tips Hotel Tips
  • Most Meals Most Meals
  • Personal Flight Options Personal Flight Options

Included Quality Dining

10 Buffet Breakfasts (BB); 1 Welcome Dinner (WD), 2 three-course table d'hôte Dinner (DW), 1 Dine-Around (DA) and 1 Celebration Dinner (CD) all with wine, plus tea or coffee.

Signature Experiences

Rome:

  • Gain VIP access into the Vatican Museums and be among the select few to admire the famous Bramante Staircase. Admire the Popes' treasure-trove and confront the genius of Michelangelo in the Sistine Chapel.
  • Sightsee the local way with a leisurely passeggiata through the backstreets, where a friend in Rome will explain how modern life takes place around ancient treasures.

Pompeii:

  • Walk with a Local Expert through the cobbled streets of this ill-fated town.

Isle of Capri:

  • Get a flavour of the jet-set lifestyle with two nights on this famous isle. Ride by open-top taxi and enjoy sightseeing with a Local Expert.

Florence:

  • Walk with a Local Expert to the Cathedral, Baptistery and see Signoria Square.

Cinque Terre:

  • Take a short cruise to visit two of the villages of this UNESCO World Heritage Site.

Portofino:

  • Have a taste of 'La Dolce Vita' in this elegant fishing village and cruise to Santa Margherita.

Venice:

  • To the tune of accompanying musicians, you will be serenaded through the atmospheric canals by gondola, past water-lapped doorways and Rococo palaces.
  • Definite Departure
Depart Date Return Date Price Discount Availability Price
20 Aug 17 31 Aug 17 checkmark $3,550pp Call 1-877-622-9109
3 Sep 17 14 Sep 17 checkmark $3,750pp Call 1-877-622-9109
8 Sep 17 19 Sep 17 checkmark $3,750pp Call 1-877-622-9109
10 Sep 17 21 Sep 17 checkmark $3,750pp Call 1-877-622-9109
15 Sep 17 26 Sep 17 checkmark $3,750pp Call 1-877-622-9109
17 Sep 17 28 Sep 17 checkmark $3,750pp Call 1-877-622-9109
22 Sep 17 3 Oct 17 checkmark $3,750pp Call 1-877-622-9109
24 Sep 17 5 Oct 17 checkmark $3,695pp Call 1-877-622-9109
1 Oct 17 12 Oct 17 checkmark $3,695pp Call 1-877-622-9109
8 Oct 17 19 Oct 17 checkmark $3,595pp Call 1-877-622-9109
1 Apr 18 12 Apr 18 $3,625$3,263pp Early PaymentPay by Jan 11 Request Quote Book Now
15 Apr 18 26 Apr 18 $3,625$3,263pp Early PaymentPay by Jan 11 Request Quote Book Now
22 Apr 18 3 May 18 $3,625$3,263pp Early PaymentPay by Jan 11 Request Quote Book Now
29 Apr 18 10 May 18 $3,625$3,263pp Early PaymentPay by Jan 11 Request Quote Book Now
6 May 18 17 May 18 $3,625$3,263pp Early PaymentPay by Jan 11 Request Quote Book Now
13 May 18 24 May 18 $3,625$3,263pp Early PaymentPay by Jan 11 Request Quote Book Now
20 May 18 31 May 18 checkmark $3,625$3,263pp Early PaymentPay by Jan 11 Request Quote Book Now
27 May 18 7 Jun 18 $3,625$3,263pp Early PaymentPay by Jan 11 Request Quote Book Now
3 Jun 18 14 Jun 18 checkmark $3,625$3,263pp Early PaymentPay by Jan 11 Request Quote Book Now
10 Jun 18 21 Jun 18 $3,625$3,263pp Early PaymentPay by Jan 11 Request Quote Book Now
17 Jun 18 28 Jun 18 checkmark $3,625$3,263pp Early PaymentPay by Jan 11 Request Quote Book Now
24 Jun 18 5 Jul 18 $3,625$3,263pp Early PaymentPay by Jan 11 Request Quote Book Now
1 Jul 18 12 Jul 18 $3,625$3,263pp Early PaymentPay by Jan 11 Request Quote Book Now
8 Jul 18 19 Jul 18 $3,625$3,263pp Early PaymentPay by Jan 11 Request Quote Book Now
15 Jul 18 26 Jul 18 $3,550$3,195pp Early PaymentPay by Jan 11 Request Quote Book Now
22 Jul 18 2 Aug 18 $3,550$3,195pp Early PaymentPay by Jan 11 Request Quote Book Now
29 Jul 18 9 Aug 18 $3,550$3,195pp Early PaymentPay by Jan 11 Request Quote Book Now
5 Aug 18 16 Aug 18 $3,550$3,195pp Early PaymentPay by Jan 11 Request Quote Book Now
12 Aug 18 23 Aug 18 $3,550$3,195pp Early PaymentPay by Jan 11 Call 1-877-622-9109
19 Aug 18 30 Aug 18 $3,550$3,195pp Early PaymentPay by Jan 11 Request Quote Book Now
26 Aug 18 6 Sep 18 checkmark $3,550$3,195pp Early PaymentPay by Jan 11 Request Quote Book Now
2 Sep 18 13 Sep 18 $3,750$3,375pp Early PaymentPay by Jan 11 Request Quote Book Now
9 Sep 18 20 Sep 18 $3,750$3,375pp Early PaymentPay by Jan 11 Request Quote Book Now
16 Sep 18 27 Sep 18 $3,750$3,375pp Early PaymentPay by Jan 11 Request Quote Book Now
23 Sep 18 4 Oct 18 $3,695$3,326pp Early PaymentPay by Jan 11 Request Quote Book Now
30 Sep 18 11 Oct 18 $3,695$3,326pp Early PaymentPay by Jan 11 Request Quote Book Now
7 Oct 18 18 Oct 18 $3,595$3,236pp Early PaymentPay by Jan 11 Request Quote Book Now
14 Oct 18 25 Oct 18 $3,595$3,236pp Early PaymentPay by Jan 11 Request Quote Book Now
21 Oct 18 1 Nov 18 $3,595$3,236pp Early PaymentPay by Jan 11 Call 1-877-622-9109

Friday departures will visit the Vatican and St. Peters Basilica on Day 3 and Pompeii on Day 5. 

Price is per person and is based on two people sharing a twin bedded room. Single rooms are available at a supplement.

Single Room Supplement: from $880 p.p.

Gratuities: Option to pre-pay gratuities for Travel Director and Driver $90 per person.

Early Payment Discount: Pay in full to save the amount listed above. For details, click here.

AARP Members are entitled to an exclusive Member Benefit Discount on all Grand European Travel vacations. Plus receive a free travel gift!  Call Toll Free: 1-866-847-3858 for details.

Past Travelers: Save an additional 5% off the Land Only price of the vacation.

  • U.S. citizens traveling to Italy must have a current passport that is valid for six months beyond the conclusion of their trip. You can find information on how to apply for a passport here, and how to renew a passport here. No visa is required for U.S. citizens entering Italy.

  • The currency in Italy is the Euro (€). While it’s a good idea to bring some euros for when you first arrive in Italy, you’ll usually find a better exchange rate when you arrive in your destination.  The most convenient way to obtain cash is to use your ATM card at local banks in Italy. We recommend you also bring a valid credit card for purchases while you are traveling.  It is important that you inform your financial institutions of your travel plans before you leave home so they don’t flag your purchases as potentially fraudulent charges.

  • While Italy is most famous for pizza and pasta, few travelers are aware of just how varied the country’s culinary offering actually are. In fact, each of the 20 regions has its own distinctive cuisine. Traditionally, lunch (pranzo) is the most substantial meal of the day. A full meal consists of antipasto (starter), a primo piatto (pasta, rice or soup), a secondo piatto (meat or fish) with a side, or contorno (vegetable or salad), then frutta (fresh fruit). Finish with espresso and maybe a limoncello or grappa.  Wine is usually served with the meal, accompanied by mineral water. Tap water is safe to drink, but not always tasty. We recommend you buy bottled mineral water. ‘Acqua non potabile’ means the water is not safe to drink.  Find out about some local specialties to try in Italy’s top destinations below.

    Florence

    Food in Florence is simple and humble, and relies on the fresh ingredients of the surrounding Tuscan countryside. Many of the local recipes have evolved from peasant dishes to international favorites. Bread is an important staple in Florentine cooking, and is featured in everything from antipasti (appetizers) such as bruschetta to traditional main dishes. Panzanella is a popular summer salad prepared with day old crusty bread and tomatoes.  Papa al pomodoro is a delicious soup made with bread, tomatoes, olive oil, garlic, and herbs.  You’ll also find a variety of dishes featuring white beans, including the hearty ribollita soup.  But the flagship of Florentine cuisine remains the famous bistecca alla fiorentina (T-bone steak).  For a sweet finish, meals are topped off with traditional cantuccini (almond cookies) and the local vin santo dessert wine.

    Venice

    A visit to Venice offers an opportunity to discover a variety of truly unique gastronomic traditions.  Venetians have a long-standing tradition of eating cicchetti, small bites similar to Spanish tapas. You can enjoy a variety of these before lunch or dinner, paired with a glass of local wine at restaurants and bars around town. Other common dishes include polenta, risotto with peas, salted cod, sardines, and local bigoli pasta.  

    Rome

    Roman cuisine is deeply rooted in the past. Despite the city’s imperial history, the food in Rome and the surrounding Lazio region is anything but refined.  Humble pasta dishes such as carbonara, amatriciana, aglio e olio (garlic and olive oil) and cacio e peppe (pecorino cheese and pepper) are local favorites served in trattorias around town. Other foods to try in Rome include pizza, a variety of fritti (fritters) made with everything from salted cod to zucchini flours, stewed oxtail, suppli (rice and Bolognese sauce croquettes) and sharp pecorino cheese. For dessert, try crostata di ricotta (Italian cheesecake) or zeppole (donuts).

  • In Italy, the weather changes very quickly, with temperatures varying from morning to night. We suggest bringing a variety of lightweight clothing items that can be layered to save space in your suitcase and give you more options for how to dress. Keep in mind that your shoulders and knees should be covered while visiting religious sites. For more helpful information please refer to our Packing Tips & Packing List.

  • At bars and restaurants, tipping is less common or generous as in the U.S. When dining out, it’s appropriate, although not required, to leave an extra euro or two for your waiter.

    At the end of your guided vacation, it’s customary to offer your motor coach driver and Travel Director a gratuity. We recommend €3.00 per person/per day for your driver and €5.00 per person/per day for your Travel Director.  Recommended gratuity for a Local Host and Local Specialist is 1-2 euros per person, paid at the conclusion of each guided visit.  A convenient option is to prepay your tips before your departure.

  • Baggage on our trips is restricted to one large suitcase per person with dimensions not exceeding 30x19x10 inches and a maximum weight of 50 pounds. You are also permitted one piece of hand luggage, which should be small enough to fit under your coach seat or on the small overhead shelf compartment. Please note that luggage with an adjustable handle and wheels will not fit in the overhead compartment of the coach. Hotel porterage is included in your vacation.

  • You will need to be comfortable on your feet, walking and standing for up to three hours in various weather conditions.  All of our vacations involve walking, often on cobblestone and uneven surfaces in historic city centers.  In order to get the most out of your vacation you need to be able to comfortably walk 1-3 miles unassisted in one day, be in good condition and be able to keep pace with the group. 

    If you need any medications, it is important that you bring enough to last you the whole trip and keep them in your carry-on bag while you travel.

  • We highly recommend our optional Travel Protection Plan, which allows you to cancel for any reason up to 48 hours before departure. The plan also includes trip interruption, baggage loss or delay, and medical and emergency assistance. Click here for a summary of coverage details, terms and conditions.

Reviews

Sunday, October 30, 2016
Service:
Vacation:
Service rating : Randy provided excellent customer service. He answered all my questions quickly.
Vacation : It was exactly as described. I was able to see a lot of Italy in a short amount of time.
Response from Grand European Travel:
Thank you so much. We will be sure to share this Randy and the rest of the team. Glad you enjoyed your trip!

Grand European Travel
Tuesday, November 8, 2016
Tuesday, October 25, 2016
Service:
Vacation:
Service rating : Excellent tour guide, locations we visited, and accommodations.
Vacation : If trip would have included the Amalfi coast it would have been perfect.
Wednesday, September 21, 2016
Service:
Vacation:
Service rating : Wonderful tour director, Ernesta Fae, from Insights tours plus, very nice to have porter and housekeeping tips included
Vacation : Great inclusions like VIP Vatican staircase, Rome Coliseum, Florence-David, Venice gondola, etc. Even the optional tours were great like the Machiavelli Dinner in Florence and water taxi tour in Venice

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

Rome By Night - Illuminations Drive

Adult Price: € 19.00

Join your Tour Director for a classic journey through one of the most fascinating cities in the world. Rome by night is a vision with its ancient monuments, classical buildings, palaces and churches beautifully illuminated against the evening sky. A wonderful introduction to the Eternal City!

Guided Visit To Colosseum & Roman Forum

Adult Price: € 52.00

With our local expert, We'll explore the glorious history of the Roman Empire. Enjoying priority reserved entrance ahead of the crowds, we'll hear tales of deadly gladiatorial combat inside the mighty Colosseum. Then, we'll walk in the footsteps of Roman soldiers and gaze over the incredible ruins of the forum, once the centre of political, religious and social life, while hearing tales of the mighty Roman Empire. Truly an incredible vision as history comes alive!

Roman Dinner Party

Adult Price: € 61.00

Enjoy an evening of delicious Roman cuisine with drinks and a great Italian ambiance.

Sorrento

Island Tour of Capri

Adult Price: € 41.00

Experience the spectacular cliffs and famous turquoise waters of Capri during a relaxing cruise around the island. View the beautiful grottos and unique coastline before ascending to Capri town. This optional experience is weather dependent and may be replaced by a minibus tour of the Island with a visit to Anacapri and the Villa San Michele.

Florence

Dinner In The Tuscan Hills

Adult Price: € 65.00

A fabulous dinner of Tuscan specialities awaits you. We drive into the hills surrounding Florence for a delicious typical Florentine meal complete with Chianti wine, music and lots of fun! An evening to remember. Viva Italia!

San Gimignano Excursion

Adult Price: € 35.00

A wonderful excursion to Tuscany's most famous hill-top town! Visit San Gimignano, considered a medieval Manhattan, due to its towers which dominate the skyline. Soak up the unique atmosphere of this ancient gem which has remained intact since the 14th century and today is listed as a UNESCO World Heritage site.

Tuscan Dinner & Cooking Demonstration

Adult Price: € 69.00

Florence and Tuscany are renowned for their rich gastronomic heritage. Tonight we travel into the hills near Florence to the northernmost part of the Chianti, where a local chef will introduce you to the dishes that make Tuscan cuisine famous throughout the world. A great cooking class, superb food and wine, with genuine and warm Tuscan hospitality.

Italian Lakes

Isola Bella

Adult Price: € 41.00

The premier attraction of Lake Maggiore is the Borromean Islands. We take a private boat over to Isola Bella, the largest and most famous island, renowned for its incredible palace and stunning Botanical Gardens. A guided tour of this privately owned palace with free time to admire the gardens is a must.

Venice

Magical Venice

Adult Price: € 54.00

Venice can be Europe's most romantic city in the evening, offering dramatic landscapes with buildings that dazzle as the sun sets and the lights go on. Sit back and take it all in as private water taxis whisk you to the centre of it all, Piazza San Marco, where we have seats reserved outside a famous Venetian cafe, in front of a live orchestra and in view of those illuminated St Mark's sights. Our private water taxis will also take us the length of the Grand Canal, under the Rialto Bridge and back to our hotel, having seen Venice at its most magical.

Burano Excursion & Meal

Adult Price: € 70.00

Leave the hustle of St Mark's Square behind on a delightful private cruise around the islands of the Venetian lagoon. Alight at the island of Burano, a photographer's paradise, famous for its candy coloured houses, artisan lace makers and leaning bell tower that would give Pisa a good run for its money. Enjoy a superb meal sampling the local specialities with wine included. An excursion not to be missed!

Hidden Venice

Adult Price: € 34.00

St Mark's Square, tick, the Rialto, tick, Grand Canal, tick... To only experience Venice's big set pieces is to miss out on a hidden world full of surprises! Join a Local Expert for a fascinating walk through some of the lesser known quarters of Venice. The back lanes and ‘campi’, small squares, where tourists seldom tread are full of history and great places to sample local life.

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