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On arrival at Rome's Fiumicino Leonardo da Vinci Airport, you will be met and transferred to your hotel, designed with the perfect mix of elegance and rich history. Built in the heart of the eternal city, Hotel Palazzo Montemartini is ideally located to begin your Italian journey. Meet your Travelling Concierge at 17:30 for a short stroll through the charming streets of Rome. Watch the world go by as you enjoy a spectacular welcome dinner at an elegant restaurant in Piazza della Rotonda, near the city’s famous Pantheon.
Skip the lines as you enjoy VIP access to the Vatican Museum. Your Journey, Your Way. Choose to join a Local Expert to explore the religious history of the Vatican as you make your way to the Sistine Chapel. Appreciate the magnificently painted frescoes before continuing to St. Peter's Basilica to see the Pieta, another masterpiece by Michelangelo. Alternatively follow your Local Expert on an art-focused tour through the Vatican's many rooms and galleries, culminating in a visit to the Raphael Rooms. Admire the School of Athens, arguably the most acclaimed fresco by Raphael, which pays tribute to the greatest artists of the Renaissance. Continue to see the Roman Forum and skip the line to visit the mighty Colosseum. This afternoon enjoy time at leisure or join a Local Expert for a walking tour of some of the hidden sites of Rome.
Journey to the ill-fated town of Pompeii, frozen in time since A.D. 79 when it was violently engulfed by a volcanic eruption from Mount Vesuvius. Join your Local Expert to learn about the lifestyles of the people who once lived here and explore the remnants of ancient shops, baths and patrician villas. In Naples board a fast-boat at the Molo Beverello for the sun-drenched Isle of Capri. On arrival, enjoy an escorted ride in an open-top taxi to your exclusive hotel. Settle in and appreciate the splendours of Capri at your leisure, long after the day-trippers have returned to the mainland.
Embark on a dazzling cruise to see the White Grotto and spectacular cliffs of the island, before arriving in Capri town to cool off with a refreshing lemon granita. Walk with your Local Expert to the gardens of Caesar Augustus to view the legendary Faraglioni Rocks, jutting out of the water. Prepare for a Highlight Lunch at the incredible Michelin-starred Mammà. Enjoy exclusive views over the Gulf of Naples, whilst savouring Mediterranean flavours created with passion from fresh, local produce by chef Salvatore La Ragione. The rest of the day is yours to explore and relax in this island paradise. Your Traveling Concierge is on hand for suggestions.
Return to the mainland and travel north along the Highway of the Sun to the winding, cobbled streets of Assisi. Your Journey, Your Way. Choose to join a Local Expert for a guided visit to the imposing Basilica of St. Francis. Alternatively, treat your palate at a tasting experience as you sample Umbrian specialities such as fresh truffle, seasoned pecorino and local breads. Continue on to Perugia, the regional capital. Ascend from the lower town, through the maze of medieval streets, to your five-star hotel, allowing for easy access to one of the traditional outdoor cafés where you can enjoy the lively buzz of the town. Why not ask your Travelling Concierge for dinner recommendations this evening.
Join a MAKE TRAVEL MATTER® Experience and discover the preserved heritage of textile loom-weaving at the Laboratorio Giuditta Brozzetti. Meet Marta, the workshop director and recipient of a TreadRight Foundation grant, and learn how this medieval craft has been kept alive over the generations. Journey to the 15th century wine domain of Guardastelle, with its spectacular views over the rolling vineyards and the medieval Manhattan which is San Gimignano. Here a wine expert will lead you around the wine estate so that you will learn more about the various grape varieties used and later go into the ancient wine cellars that combine ancient traditions with modern technology for a wine tasting. A lunch of Tuscan specialities will add to the full enjoyment of the wines, as will the breath-taking views over the Tuscan landscape. Continue to San Gimignano, to taste the award-winning gelato of Sergio Dondoli.
Your Journey, Your Way. Choose to join an art historian to immerse yourself in Renaissance Florence. Visit the Accademia Museum and marvel at the original statue of David, a masterpiece of Michelangelo. See the impressive trio of the Duomo, Bell Tower and Baptistery before arriving to Piazza della Signoria, traditionally the political heart of the city. Alternatively, join a local foodie and get to know Florence one bite at a time on your walking tour. Learn about Florentine speciliaties, visit the lively Mercato Centrale and sample a selection of gourmet highlights. Spend the rest of the afternoon at leisure. This evening, forage for the region's famous aromatic truffles guided by an expert truffle dog. Enjoy dinner in an elegant villa offering a choice of dishes, including the famous Fiorentina (mouth-watering grilled Tuscan beefsteak).
Join a professional chef and uncover the secrets of Tuscan cooking during an authentic culinary masterclass set in the former hunting lodge of the Medici family. Complete your cooking experience by savouring the fruits of your labour with a lovely lunch. In the afternoon, travel to Pisa and meet your Local Expert to view the splendid Duomo, Baptistery and the famous, gravity-defying Leaning Tower of Pisa.
Journey northwest towards the Cinque Terre, a UNESCO World Heritage Site. Join your Local Expert in the picturesque fishing village of Manarola, then cruise along the rugged coast to explore Monterosso's medieval quarter and popular sandy beach. Enjoy lunch at leisure, before arriving at your hotel with fabulous views overlooking the Portofino peninsula, where you may want to take a dip in the pool or enjoy a cocktail before dinner.
Today's journey will take you across the Apennine mountain range with spectacular scenery. Take a water taxi along the famous Grand Canal, lined with historical Venetian palaces. In the evening, you are invited to a private, after-hours visit of the magniﬁcent Doge's Palace. Formerly the Doge's residence and the seat of Venetian government, the Palace is the very symbol of Venice and a masterpiece of Gothic architecture. As crowds disappear, discover the history, art and culture of the Venetian Republic with your Local Expert.
Start your day with a MAKE TRAVEL MATTER® Experience by visiting a craftsman’s workshop to witness the age-old skill of glassblowing, now practiced by precious few masters. Your Journey, Your Way. Join a Local Expert to explore the hidden back alleys of Venice while discovering the alluring history behind La Serenissima’s medieval grace and glory. Alternatively, join a Local Expert and continue to discover the traditions of Venetian craft-making. See how the iconic carnival masks are created and learn about marbleized paper and the art of bookbinding. Later, take your seat in an elegant gondola for a serenade through the romantic canals. Tonight, learn how to make Venice's celebrated cocktail, the 'Bellini, and enjoy it as your aperitivo at our Celebration Dinner in the atmospheric Taverna La Fenice. Savour dishes that keep with tradition and are enriched with seasonal ingredients.
After breakfast, bid farewell to your travel companions and transfer by private boat to Venice Marco Polo Airport for your onward journey.
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