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Wonders of Italy

11 Days from $2,475 per person

Style: First Class | Pace: Leisurely

Indulge in an enduring exploration of Italy's alluring art, architecture and history. See the imposing towers of San Gimignano and the seas of pastel shades that cling dramatically to Cinque Terre's cliffs.

Wonders of Italy also has winter departures; click here to see the Winter Season version of this tour!

Travel to Europe often requires an overnight flight. Please arrange for flights to arrive on or before Day 1.

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Overview

Indulge in an enduring exploration of Italy's alluring art, architecture and history. See the imposing towers of San Gimignano and the seas of pastel shades that cling dramatically to Cinque Terre's cliffs.

Wonders of Italy also has winter departures; click here to see the Winter Season version of this tour!

Travel to Europe often requires an overnight flight. Please arrange for flights to arrive on or before Day 1.

  1. Benvenuto a Roma! On arrival to Rome Fiumicino Airport transfers will operate at 9:30 am, 12:30 pm and 3:30 pm. Guests arriving later should make their own way to the hotel. Open your heart to a whirlwind of fiery passion, antiquities and hearty flavors crafted by Italian mammas over centuries. Enjoy a leisurely first encounter with the Eternal City before joining your travel companions and Travel Director for a Welcome Reception and orientation drive to see the bustling cityscape.

    meal(s):Welcome Reception
    hotel:Il Cantico
  2. Dive into culture on an included sightseeing tour with a Local Specialist at the Vatican Museums. Admire the works of great masters—the Bramante staircase, magnificent frescoed ceiling in the Sistine Chapel and sorrowful Pietà inside St. Peter's Basilica. In Ancient Rome, we pay tribute to the brave gladiators who fought for supremacy at the Colosseum during our included visit. We'll see the Circus Maximus where chariots thundered to the applause of thousands before a free afternoon.

    meal(s):Buffet Breakfast
  3. We travel north to Lucca and enjoy time to wander through the medieval streets and admire the 14th-century San Martino Cathedral and Piazza dell'Anfiteatro, built on the site of an ancient Roman arena. Relax in Piazza San Michele or ascend one of the city's ancient towers for panoramic views in your free time.

    meal(s):Buffet Breakfast
    hotel:Grand Guinigi
  4. A sea of pastel pinks, yellows and blues cling dramatically to the Ligurian cliffs in Cinque Terre UNESCO World Heritage Site, which we will have an opportunity to explore today on our included excursion. Join a Local Specialist and delve into the daily life of these picturesque fishing villages. Stop in Pisa and visit its square of Miracles to view the architectural feat that is the leaning tower and UNESCO-listed Piazza del Duomo.

    meal(s):Buffet Breakfast, Dinner with Wine
  5. The gentle Tuscan landscape gives way to our next destination, the hilltop town of San Gimignano, famed for its stunning medieval architecture and historic towers, which stand today as a testament to the wealth and power of aristocratic families who lived here centuries ago. We connect with locals over a Be My Guest lunch with wine in a beautiful family-owned vineyard overlooking the rolling Chianti Hills, before arriving in Florence, our home for the next two nights.

    meal(s):Buffet Breakfast, Lunch
    hotel:Grand Mediterraneo
  6. Discover Renaissance treasures, extraordinary art and exquisite architecture in one of the cultural capitals of the world. We join a Local Specialist who will bring the legacy of the influential Medici family to life. Walk along grand avenues and narrow lanes into expansive piazze, viewing the magnificent marble Duomo and replica of the David statue in Piazza della Signoria. View the 400-year-old Ponte Vecchio and admire spectacular panoramic views from Piazzale Michelangelo. You'll also learn about the quality and workmanship of two of this city's historic industries at demonstrations of Florentine leathercraft and 18-carat gold. The rest of the day is yours to explore the Cradle of the Renaissance. Visit the masterpieces of Michelangelo, Botticelli and Da Vinci at Uffizi Gallery, wander through the architectural wonder of Palazzo Pitti or shop for high-quality leather and gold.

    meal(s):Buffet Breakfast
  7. Shakespeare's star-crossed lovers are remembered today during our jaunt to the romantic city of Verona where we will view Juliet's Balcony and the 1st-century Roman Arena, still used today to host spectacular operatic performances. We venture to Venice next, spending the rest of the afternoon exploring the city's labyrinthine calle on our own in search of hidden treasures. Wander along the Grand Canal, watch the sun set over St. Mark's Square or join an Optional Experience.

    meal(s):Buffet Breakfast
    hotel:Le Boulevard
  8. On the island of Giudecca, we dive into culture and witness the centuries-old tradition of Venetian glassblowing before seeing St. Mark's Basilica, the ornate Doge's Palace and the Bridge of Sighs. Cruise by private launch to visit the city's most iconic attractions before enjoying free time to explore the city on your terms. Wander through the labyrinthine alleys, over ornate bridges and into quiet piazze as you get lost in this enchanting city.

    meal(s):Buffet Breakfast
  9. Travel through scenic countryside to the mystical town of Assisi, stopping en route in the city of Bologna to view its Kissing Towers that lean towards one other, seemingly poised to embrace. Continue to your hotel in Assisi where you'll dine this evening.

    meal(s):Buffet Breakfast, Dinner with Wine
    hotel:Grand
  10. Discover the legacy of St. Francis of Assisi in his home town on the slopes of Mount Subasio. Join a Local Specialist for a visit to the Basilica of St. Francis, renowned for its beautiful frescoes depicting the life of this much-loved saint. We continue to Tivoli for a guided visit with a Local Specialist of the UNESCO-listed terraced hillside Renaissance gardens of Villa d'Este. Wander past bubbling fountains, manicured hedges and ornate statues as you soak up the tranquil atmosphere of this historic hill town. This evening we enjoy a special Farewell Dinner with our fellow travelers and Travel Director before returning to Rome.

    meal(s):Buffet Breakfast, Farewell Dinner
    hotel:Sheraton Parco de' Medici
  11. It's time to say a fond arrivederci to Italy and our newfound friends after a memorable journey. Return transfers will arrive at Rome Fiumicino Airport at 7 am and 9:30 am. Conditions apply.

    meal(s):Buffet Breakfast
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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.

  • Add air to your reservation

    Let our Air Specialists handle your air reservations. We have direct access to the most current airfare routes and prices, so you’ll get the best value available when we book your flights. We never charge a booking fee and you’ll enjoy the flexibility to pay for air 60-90 days prior to departure.

Print Itinerary
  • Definite Departure
  • Festive Celebrations
  • Solo Traveler Discount
  • Autumn Winter Spring Departure
Depart Date Return Date Price Discount Availability Price
21 Apr 19 1 May 19 checkmark $3,150$2,835pp Early PaymentPay by Jan 31 Request Quote Book Now
28 Apr 19 8 May 19 $3,150$2,835pp Early PaymentPay by Jan 31 Request Quote Book Now
5 May 19 15 May 19 checkmark $3,150$2,835pp Early PaymentPay by Jan 31 Request Quote Book Now
12 May 19 22 May 19 checkmark $3,150$2,835pp Early PaymentPay by Jan 31 Request Quote Book Now
19 May 19 29 May 19 checkmark $3,150$2,835pp Early PaymentPay by Jan 31 Request Quote Book Now
26 May 19 5 Jun 19 $3,150$2,835pp Early PaymentPay by Jan 31 Request Quote Book Now
2 Jun 19 12 Jun 19 checkmark $3,150$2,835pp Early PaymentPay by Jan 31 Request Quote Book Now
9 Jun 19 19 Jun 19 checkmark $3,150$2,835pp Early PaymentPay by Jan 31 Request Quote Book Now
16 Jun 19 26 Jun 19 $3,150$2,835pp Early PaymentPay by Jan 31 Request Quote Book Now
23 Jun 19 3 Jul 19 $3,125$2,813pp Early PaymentPay by Jan 31 Request Quote Book Now
30 Jun 19 10 Jul 19 checkmark $3,125$2,813pp Early PaymentPay by Jan 31 Request Quote Book Now
7 Jul 19 17 Jul 19 checkmark $3,125$2,813pp Early PaymentPay by Jan 31 Request Quote Book Now
14 Jul 19 24 Jul 19 $3,095$2,786pp Early PaymentPay by Jan 31 Request Quote Book Now
21 Jul 19 31 Jul 19 checkmark $3,095$2,786pp Early PaymentPay by Jan 31 Request Quote Book Now
Solo Traveler Discount
28 Jul 19 7 Aug 19 $3,050$2,745pp Early PaymentPay by Jan 31 Request Quote Book Now
4 Aug 19 14 Aug 19 checkmark $3,050$2,745pp Early PaymentPay by Jan 31 Request Quote Book Now
11 Aug 19 21 Aug 19 $3,050$2,745pp Early PaymentPay by Jan 31 Request Quote Book Now
25 Aug 19 4 Sep 19 checkmark $3,095$2,786pp Early PaymentPay by Jan 31 Request Quote Book Now
1 Sep 19 11 Sep 19 checkmark $3,150$2,835pp Early PaymentPay by Jan 31 Request Quote Book Now
8 Sep 19 18 Sep 19 checkmark $3,150$2,835pp Early PaymentPay by Jan 31 Request Quote Book Now
15 Sep 19 25 Sep 19 checkmark $3,150$2,835pp Early PaymentPay by Jan 31 Request Quote Book Now
22 Sep 19 2 Oct 19 checkmark $3,150$2,835pp Early PaymentPay by Jan 31 Request Quote Book Now
29 Sep 19 9 Oct 19 checkmark $3,150$2,835pp Early PaymentPay by Jan 31 Request Quote Book Now
6 Oct 19 16 Oct 19 checkmark $3,150$2,835pp Early PaymentPay by Jan 31 Request Quote Book Now
13 Oct 19 23 Oct 19 checkmark $3,150$2,835pp Early PaymentPay by Jan 31 Request Quote Book Now
20 Oct 19 30 Oct 19 $3,150$2,835pp Early PaymentPay by Jan 31 Request Quote Book Now
Autumn Winter Spring Departure
27 Oct 19 6 Nov 19 $2,725pp Request Quote Book Now
Autumn Winter Spring Departure
3 Nov 19 13 Nov 19 $2,475pp Request Quote Book Now
Autumn Winter Spring Departure
17 Nov 19 27 Nov 19 $2,475pp Request Quote Book Now
Autumn Winter Spring Departure
8 Dec 19 18 Dec 19 $2,475pp Request Quote Book Now
Festive Celebrations
Autumn Winter Spring Departure
22 Dec 19 1 Jan 20 $3,025pp Request Quote Book Now
Festive Celebrations
Autumn Winter Spring Departure
22 Dec 19 1 Jan 20 $3,025pp Request Quote Book Now
Autumn Winter Spring Departure
5 Jan 20 15 Jan 20 $2,495pp Request Quote Book Now
Autumn Winter Spring Departure
8 Mar 20 18 Mar 20 $2,475pp Request Quote Book Now
Autumn Winter Spring Departure
22 Mar 20 1 Apr 20 $2,475pp Request Quote Book Now
Autumn Winter Spring Departure
5 Apr 20 15 Apr 20 $2,775pp Request Quote Book Now
Autumn Winter Spring Departure
12 Apr 20 22 Apr 20 $2,775pp Request Quote Book Now
  • Festive Celebrations: Christmas and/or New Year Celebrations have been arranged for these departures.
  • Solo Traveler Discount: This departure includes a 20-100% discount on standard single supplement subject to availability.
  • Autumn Winter Spring Departure: Please note, these departures are subject to change in price, discount and hotel.

Price is per person and is based on two people sharing a room. 

Single Room Supplement: from $520 per person

Triple Room Discount: $70per person

Gratuities: Option to pre-pay gratuities for Travel Director and Driver, $107 per person

Airport transfers: On arrival at Rome Fiumicino Airport transfers will operate at 9:30 am, 12:30 pm and 3:30 pm. Guests arriving later should make their own way to the hotel. Return transfers on the last travel day will arrive at Rome Fiumicino Airport at 7 am and 9:30 am.

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.

Print Itinerary

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

Meal Summary

15 meals: 10 hot buffet breakfasts, 1 lunch, 4 dinners with local wine.

Included Highlights

Connect with Locals

  • The Lenzi family invites you to join them for a Be My Guest lunch and a Chianti and olive oil tasting on their Tuscan wine farm which is located on the ancient road between Siena and Florence

Dive into Culture

  • Be inspired by the magnificence of Michelangelo at The Vatican Museums and enjoy an exclusive visit up the spiral staircase designed by the famous architect Donato Bramante in a part of the Vatican not open to the public. Witness the exquisite craft of glassblowing on Giudecca Island, a delicate tradition that generations of Venetian craftsmen have perfected over the centuries

Local Specialist

  • For included sightseeing in Rome, the Cinque Terre, Florence, Assisi, Tivoli

Sightseeing Highlights

  • VIP admission to the Vatican Museum
  • City tour in Rome, Florence, Assisi
  • Orientation of Pisa, San Gimignano, Verona, Venice
  • Visit St. Peter's Basilica, the Colosseum in Rome, the Cinque Terre, San Gimignano, the Basilica of St. Francis in Assisi, Villa d'Este Gardens at Tivoli
  • Travel by boat and train to Cinque Terre
  • View the ancient sites of Rome, Leaning Tower of Pisa, the Santa Croce Basilica and Duomo in Florence, Juliet's Balcony in Verona, St. Mark's Basilica in Venice, the Kissing Towers of Bologna
Request a Quote
  • 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.

  • Add air to your reservation

    Let our Air Specialists handle your air reservations. We have direct access to the most current airfare routes and prices, so you’ll get the best value available when we book your flights. We never charge a booking fee and you’ll enjoy the flexibility to pay for air 60-90 days prior to departure.

Print Itinerary

Reviews

Thursday, September 20, 2018
Trusted Customer
Service:
Vacation:
Service rating : Excellent in every respect. My questions and concerns were answered quickly and without delay. Also Trafalgar is an outstanding company. I hope in the future to engage your services for another trip. Albert Lazaro Garcia
Response from Grand European Travel:
How great to hear that you had such an excellent time in Italy! That makes our day. Thank you for sharing. \nFeel free to reach out any time about your travels. We're here to make your vacations as stress-free as possible, no question is too small and it's our passion to find you the perfect trip.
Monday, September 24, 2018
Vacation : The tour was fantastic and Trafalgar is an outstanding company in their tour offerings, plans, and customer satisfaction.
Saturday, August 18, 2018
Trusted Customer
Service:
Vacation:
Service rating : Their service was good. The trip was more strenuous than we thought.
Vacation : amazing itinerary. Needed some rest time. When free time, we were never near our hotel to rest.
Wednesday, June 6, 2018
Trusted Customer
Service:
Vacation:
Service rating : This was our first trip to Europe and they were with us every step of the way. Randy (our agent) was always available for questions or concerns and gave us really good advice. Yes! We would definitely travel with them again.
Response from Grand European Travel:
We're so happy that you had such a wonderful experience on your first trip to Europe! Randy is a wonderful agent, we'll be sure to pass along your compliment. Thank you for sharing your experience and for being a part of our travel family.
Wednesday, June 6, 2018
Vacation : The cost of the tour vs the places we experienced were right in line. We were pleased.
Request a Quote
  • 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.

  • Add air to your reservation

    Let our Air Specialists handle your air reservations. We have direct access to the most current airfare routes and prices, so you’ll get the best value available when we book your flights. We never charge a booking fee and you’ll enjoy the flexibility to pay for air 60-90 days prior to departure.

Print Itinerary
  • 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 24 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.

Request a Quote
  • 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.

  • Add air to your reservation

    Let our Air Specialists handle your air reservations. We have direct access to the most current airfare routes and prices, so you’ll get the best value available when we book your flights. We never charge a booking fee and you’ll enjoy the flexibility to pay for air 60-90 days prior to departure.

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