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Best of Italy 2014 2015

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The Papal Basilica of St. Francis of Assisi in Assisi, ItalyIsle of Capri in the province of Naples, ItalyPonte Vecchio in Florence, ItalyThe Leaning Tower of Pisa, ItalyThe ruins of Pompeii near Naples, ItalyColosseum during Christmas in Rome, ItalyColosseum in Rome, ItalyCeilings within Vatican City, ItalyLake Maggiore in Stresa, ItalyVenice, Italy
The Papal Basilica of St. Francis of Assisi in Assisi, Italy
Isle of Capri in the province of Naples, Italy
Ponte Vecchio in Florence, Italy
The Leaning Tower of Pisa, Italy
The ruins of Pompeii near Naples, Italy
Colosseum during Christmas in Rome, Italy
Colosseum in Rome, Italy
Ceilings within Vatican City, Italy
Lake Maggiore in Stresa, Italy
Venice, Italy
  • Duration: 13 Days
  • Rating: Read Reviews
  • Brochure: Autumn, Winter & Spring 2014/2015
  • Style: Regional
  • Description: The essence of 'la dolce vita' is explored through the cuisine, art and landscapes of Italy, from its iconic cities and turquoise lakes to its laid-back southern shores. It's Insider moments like… watching delicate designs take shape as the scent of chestnut fills the air, at an in-laid woodwork demonstration in Sorrento. Finding out more about the artistic techniques that are passed down generations, and meeting the artisans who continue these traditions, in one of Italy's most beautiful spots. And it's getting beyond the ruins in Pompeii with our local friend, who paints a picture of streets buzzing with excitement at the festival of fire, just hours before the molten lava of Mount Vesuvius buried the city.

Guest Experiences

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Trip Itinerary

  • Day 1


    Welcome to Rome, the Eternal City! Spend the rest of your day relaxing or take a leisurely stroll around the city. Join your companions and your Travel Director later for a Welcome Reception. Then enjoy an orientation drive to see St. Peter's Basilica and other sights - a great introduction to this beautiful city.

    Meal(s): (Welcome Reception)

    Hotel: Il Cantico Authentic Accommodations

    Hotels are subject to change.
  • Day 2


    Visit St. Peter's Basilica, the most important Catholic church in the world on your included morning sightseeing tour with a Local Expert. Across the Tiber, view the Forum, center of daily life in ancient Rome and the Circus Maximus where chariot races were held. Later visit inside the mighty Colosseum. Then spend free time this afternoon seeing the sights of your choice. This evening, why not discover the city's culinary delights?

    Meal(s): (Buffet Breakfast)

  • Day 3


    Visit the Sistine Chapel this morning with a Local Expert to see Michelangelo's famous frescoed ceiling. Then travel south to the Commonwealth Cemetery in Monte Cassino which lies below the famous Abbey that was the site of a fierce battle in May 1944. Continue south through the fertile Campania region to the Bay of Naples in the shadow of Mount Vesuvius, and along the coast to Sorrento. Dine tonight at your hotel.

    Meal(s): (Buffet Breakfast / Dinner with wine)

    Hotel: Johanna Park

    Hotels are subject to change.
  • Day 4


    Witness the art of inlaid wood-working, a Local Specialty for which Sorrento is famous. Later, embark on an included excursion by ferry to the Isle of Capri. Visit Capri town and other sights during your tour with a Local Expert. Spend time exploring this lovely island on your own. Perhaps consider visiting the villa of the Swedish doctor, Axel Munthe.

    Meal(s): (Buffet Breakfast)

  • Day 5


    This morning, your Local Expert tells you all about the devastation caused by the eruption of Vesuvius in AD 79 during your included walking tour of Pompeii. Assisi is your next destination. This mystical town is perched on the slopes of Mount Subasio overlooking the peaceful Umbrian landscape. Under the protection of St. Francis this city is still enclosed by medieval ramparts. Your Local Expert takes you on a walking tour, which includes a visit to the Basilica of St. Francis, famous for its frescoes depicting the life of this much-loved saint. Spend time afterwards exploring on your own and shopping for souvenirs. Dine at your hotel this evening.

    Meal(s): (Buffet Breakfast / Dinner with wine)

    Hotel: Cenacolo Authentic Accommodations

    Hotels are subject to change.
  • Day 6


    Today, enjoy the glorious countryside and historic architecture of the Emilia Romagna region. The area is also renowned for its cuisine such as Tortellini, Mortadella and Parmesan cheese, which you could sample during your lunch stop.  Arrive later in Venice, Queen of the Adriatic.

    Meal(s): (Buffet Breakfast / Dinner with wine)

    Hotel: Principe/Amadeus

    Hotels are subject to change.
  • Day 7


    Your cruise by private launch to St. Mark's Square is magical! View the Bridge of Sighs, the beautiful Doge's Palace and the Basilica. Watch a Local Specialty demonstration of the ancient art of glassblowing at a traditional workshop on Giudecca island. Spend free time seeing the sights of your choice. You might like to cruise across the lagoon to the Island of Burano and enjoy a delicious seafood meal.

    Meal(s): (Buffet Breakfast)

  • Day 8


    This morning travel to Verona, the home of Shakespeare's star-crossed lovers, to admire the Roman arena and Juliet's balcony. Cross the plains of Lombardy to Milan for a walking tour of this fashionable city with your Local Expert. See the Duomo, La Scala Opera house and the famous Galleria.

    Meal(s): (Buffet Breakfast)

    Hotel: Barchetta Excelsior

    Hotels are subject to change.
  • Day 9


    Enjoy an orientation of Como including the Old Town and views of the Cathedral. Later consider joining a lake cruise that takes in views of beautiful villas and gardens along the shoreline.

    Meal(s): (Buffet Breakfast)

  • Day 10


    Cross the Plains of Lombardy, the forested Apennine Mountains, and pass by Genoa to Pisa. View the extraordinary Leaning Tower before arriving in Florence, birthplace of the Renaissance. Tonight, you might like to sample some local Tuscan cuisine.

    Meal(s): (Buffet Breakfast)

    Hotel: Grand Hotel Mediterraneo

    Hotels are subject to change.
  • Day 11

    Florence Sightseeing and Free Time

    Your Local Expert brings the city‘s rich history to life during your walking tour. See the Cathedral and Piazza della Signoria and view Ponte Vecchio. Today experience typical Tuscan cuisine as you enjoy a special Be My Guest dinner with a local family.

    Meal(s): (Buffet Breakfast / Be My Guest Dining)

  • Day 12


    Set in scenic Tuscan countryside, visit the medieval town of Siena, famous for its exciting Palio horse race. This evening in Rome, join your Travel Director and new found friends for a Farewell Dinner.

    Meal(s): (Buffet Breakfast / Farewell Dinner)

    Hotel: Executive Style

    Hotels are subject to change.
  • Day 13


    Say 'arrivederci Roma' at the end of your memorable vacation in Italy. Transfers are available to Rome Fiumicino Airport. Conditions apply.

    Meal(s): (Buffet Breakfast)

What's Included

Insider Experiences

  • Be My Guest Enjoy a special Tuscan lunch with a local family.
  • Local Expert in Rome, Pompeii, Capri, Assisi, Milan and Florence.
  • Unique Insight Follow in the footsteps of Michelangelo and da Vinci when visiting the Vatican Museums. Ascend the smooth and step-less spiral staircase designed by famous architect Donato Bramante, in a part of the Vatican not open to the public.
  • Hidden Treasure Enjoy at least one surprise Hidden Treasure experience, unique to your itinerary, courtesy of your expert Travel Director.
  • Local Specialty Visit Giudecca Island for an insider look at Venetian Arts. See glassblowing artisans and other craftsmen in action.
  • Local Specialty Visit a traditional inlaid wood workshop in Sorrento.

Sightseeing Highlights

  • City tour in Rome, Pompeii, Capri, Assisi, Milan and Florence.
  • Orientation of Venice.
  • Visit St. Peter's Basilica, the Sistine Chapel, Vatican Museum, the Roman Colosseum, the Commonwealth War Cemetery, the excavations at Pompeii, St. Francis Basilica in Assisi, picturesque Lake Como and the medieval city of Siena.
  • Cruise to the beautiful Isle of Capri and by private launch to St. Mark's Square in Venice.
  • View the Roman Forum in Rome, the Byzantine St. Mark's Basilica in Venice, the Roman Arena and Juliet's Balcony in Verona, the Gothic Cathedral and La Scala Opera House in Milan, the Leaning Tower of Pisa and the Duomo in Florence.


  • 12 hot buffet breakfasts.
  • 6 dinners (including Welcome Reception, Be My Guest, 3 three course dinners with wine and Farewell Dinner).

Travel Highlights

  • All hotel service charges and tips, baggage handling fees and local taxes included.
  • Airport transfers are provided on the first and last travel day.
  • Audio HeadsetsProvided throughout your vacation to enhance your included sightseeing experiences.
  • A travel wallet with your documentation.
  • Hotel accommodations featuring twin rooms and private facilities.
  • Travel by luxury air-conditioned coach with reclining seats and an on-board restroom.
  • The services of a professional Travel Director throughout your journey.
  • Complimentary keepsake photo.

Airport Transfers

  • For full details on transfers, please click here.
  • These prices are LAND-ONLY and are correct at the time of the website going live, however prices are subject to confirmation at the time
    of booking.
  • All trip information is correct at time of trips going live, however prices and itineraries are subject to change, please confirm all details and final cost at time of booking.
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  • Hotels are subject to change.
  • * For single travellers purchasing the twin-share option, please note that there is a no smoking policy in all shared rooms. Solo travel is not accepted on guided Family Experiences holidays unless travelling as part of a family group. 
  • ^Twin-share option not available for trips to South America., Costa Rica, Mexico, Alaska, Hawaii or for any holiday & cruise combination, or in Asia and Eastern Mediterranean except Highlights of Turkey (without cruise) & Best of Turkey.

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