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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.
Your Guided Holiday Includes:
- 10 night’s accommodation in 4 star hotels
- 15 meals - 10 breakfasts, 1 lunch & 4 dinners
- Select sightseeing + more
- An expert Travel Director and professional Driver
- Luxury air-conditioned coach with Wi-Fi in most countries or alternative transportation (such as rail journeys)
- Complimentary coach & hotel Wi-Fi (where available)
- Hotel & restaurant tips
Price is based on 12, 19 & 26 July, 02, 09, 16, 23, 30 August 2020 departures
- VIP ADMISSION to the Vatican Museums
- VISIT St Peter's Basilica, the Colosseum in Rome, San Gimignano, the Basilica of St. Francis in Assisi and Villa d'Este Gardens in Tivoli
- SCENIC CRUISE by private launch to St. Mark's Square in Venice
- ORIENTATION of Pisa, San Gimignano, Verona, and Venice
- VIEW the ancient sites of Rome, the Leaning Tower of Pisa, the Santa Croce Basilica and Duomo in Florence, Juliet's Balcony in Verona, St. Mark's Basilica in Venice and the Kissing Towers of Bologna
Day 1 / Arrive Rome (2 Nights)
Benvenuti a Roma! Open your heart to a whirlwind of fiery passion, antiquities and hearty flavours 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.
Day 2 / Rome Sightseeing and Free Time
'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 the 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.
Day 3 / Rome – Lucca (2 Nights)
We stop in Pisa and visit its UNESCO-listed Square of Miracles to view the architectural feat that is the Leaning Tower. Then, travel 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.
Day 4 / Cinque Terre and Pisa Excursion
A sea of pastel pinks, yellows and blues cling dramatically to the Ligurian cliffs in the 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 daily life in these picturesque fishing villages. Stop in Pisa and visit its UNESCO-listed Square of Miracles to view the architectural feat that is the leaning tower.
Day 5 / Lucca – San Gimignano – Florence (2 Nights)
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.
Day 6 / Florence Sightseeing and Free Time
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 narrow lanes into expansive piazze, viewing the magnificent marble Duomo and a replica of the David statue in Piazza della Signoria. View the Ponte Vecchio, over 670 years old, 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.
Day 7 / Florence – Verona – Venice (2 Nights)
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 calli 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.
Day 8 / Venice Orientation and Free Time
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 see 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 campi as you get lost in this enchanting city.
Day 9 / Venice – Bologna – Assisi
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 another, seemingly poised to embrace. Continue to your hotel in Assisi where you'll dine this evening.
Day 10 / Assisi Sightseeing – Villa d'Este Gardens – Rome
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 beloved 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 travellers and Travel Director.
Day 11 / Depart Rome
It's time to say a fond arrivederci to Italy and our newfound friends after a memorable journey. Transfers are available. Conditions apply.
Terms and conditions apply. Prices are per person twin share or solo traveller in Australian dollars based on 12 & 19 July 2020 departures. Trip prices and dates are correct as of 04 November 2019 but subject to change and will be confirmed at the time of booking. Prices are tour only and do not include international flights, but can be added, please speak to your travel consultant for further details