Grand Tour of North and South Italy spoken only in English
2018 depart: Apr 01, 08, 15, 22, 29. May 04, 06, 11, 13, 18, 20, 25, 27. Jun 01, 03, 08, 10, 15, 17, 22, 24, 29. Jul 01, 06, 08, 13, 15, 20, 22, 27, 29. Aug 03, 05, 10, 12, 17, 19, 24, 26, 31. Sep 02, 07, 09, 14, 16, 21, 23, 28, 30. Oct 05, 07, 12, 14, 19, 21, 26, 28.
Upgrade to a superior room on request
day 01 Rome Arrival
Arrive in Rome and independent transfer to your hotel. Check in and then enjoy the city at your leisure.
day 02 Rome, Assisi, Siena, Florence
Departing at 07.15 by a deluxe coach, you will arrive in Assisi where you can explore this tiny town at leisure. Make time to visit the basilica of St. Francis, where you will see masterpieces by Giotto and Cimabue. After lunch at leisure, board the bus for Siena, a medieval town surrounded by ancient walls that is known for the Palio, an annual summertime horse race around the shell-shaped town square, Piazza del Campo. Then, you will continue on to Florence, where you will check in to your hotel before enjoying dinner and a well- earned rest.
day 03 Florence
After breakfast, you will spend the day venturing around beautiful Florence, the “Cradle of Renaissance, where, with the help of Michelangelo, Italian art reached its pinnacle. Based on etruscan-roman origins, the city flourished in the Middle Ages as a free “Comune” and was further refined during the Renaissance. You will be fascinated by the uncountable monuments, churches and buildings as Santa Maria del Fiore, more commonly referred to as the Duomo. On your visit, you will be amazed by its magnificent dome built by Filippo Brunelleschi. Cross a small piazza to see the “Campanile” tower (partly designed by Giotto) and the Baptistery with its bronze doors where Michelangelo imagined the “Gates of Paradise.” In the heart of the city, you will see Piazza della Signoria, Palazzo della Signoria (also known as Palazzo Vecchio), and the Basilica of Santa Croce. Lunch in a typical Tuscan restaurant in Piazza Santa Croce. Spend the afternoon strolling the cobblestone streets of Florence on your own or take a short trip to Pisa (optional), one of the four main historical Marine Republics of Italy. There, you will tour the Piazza dei Miracoli with the Duomo, Pisa’s symbol “the Leaning Tower” and the Baptistery. Dinner is at leisure in the evening.
day 04 Florence-Bologna-Padova-Venice
Depart for Bologna after breakfast in Florence. There, you will wander through the city’s 38 kilometres worth of elegant arcades (or porticos), for which Bologna is famous. From Piazza Malpighi, we will walk to Piazza del Nettuno and Piazza Maggiore (Neptune square and Major square) in the heart of the city, where you will find Neptune fountain; King Renzo Palace; Podestà Palace; and the Basilica of San Petronio, one of the largest in the world. In the afternoon continue toward Padova, with its original Saint Antonio basilica. Later, you will arrive in Venice, world-renowned for its classic gondola boats and its elegant, refined art. Check in to your hotel and enjoy your first Venetian dinner and overnight stay.
day 05 Venice
After breakfast, enjoy your private water-taxi transfer to Piazza San Marco, with “skip the line” tickets to visit the splendid St.Mark’s Basilica and, after this, check out the most iconic places of the “Floating City”: the Palazzo dei Dogi, symbol of Venice’s glorious past, the legendary “Bridge of Sighs”. Spend the afternoon roaming along Venice’s canals at your leisure and then return to the hotel for dinner and overnight.
day 06 Venice-Montepulciano-Rome
After breakfast, departure from Piazzale Roma heading to Tuscany, world-known for its landscapes, its churches and castles and its delicious wines. You will proceed to Val di Chiana with a stop in Montepulciano, a medieval town rich in history and art. Known for its “Nobile” wine, on purchase in local wine houses, Montepulciano also hosts an annual jazz and wine festival every July. Spend the afternoon discovering Montepulciano at your own pace, enjoying free wine tastings in many wine shops and free time for shopping. In the evening, you will arrive in Rome to check in into your hotel. B
day 07 Rome
Between 7:45 - 8:00 am, departure from the hotel for the included tour of the Vatican Museums, Sistine Chapel and St. Peters’s Basilica with our exclusive “Skip the Line” access! No stress to reach the area: upon arrival, your guide will lead you into the museums where you’ll visit one of the most important art collections of the world. Walk along the beautiful Galleries of Tapestries and Geographical Maps before admiring Raphael’s Rooms and, then, the amazing Sistine Chapel. After this incredible masterpiece, you will be taken by a privileged door to St. Peters’s Basilica: the biggest church in the world! The tour ends on St.Peter’s Square: enjoy the rest of the day to explore the city at your own leisure or get any one of our selected tours for the afternoon or at night!
day 08 Rome-Naples-Pompeii-Sorrento
After breakfast, pick up at your hotel at 7:00 am approximately. Depart by coach heading south crossing the regions of Lazio and Campania. Arrival in Naples and short panoramic tour climbing up to Vomero hill to enjoy beautiful views over the Gulf of Naples with the Vesuvius, Capri, Ischia and Procida and the city below; time to take some nice pictures and then return to Mergellina where you will have time for a short walk on the marina, before being boarded to the bus heading to the restaurant for lunch. The lunch break will be served in a first class hotel in Ercolano, set in monumental grounds with one of the best examples of what ecletic gardens were during the 1700s. After lunch you will reach Pompeii to enter into the world-famous site with skip the line tickets. Visit the haunting ruins of Pompeii, traveling back in time to the tragic days in 79 AD when the silent Mount Vesuvius suddenly erupted, covering the prosperous Roman city in deadly volcanic ashes and poisonous gases, leaving this prosperous city crystallized until our days. You’ll learn how people lived at that time, visiting houses and “bars” of the time, admiring frescoes and mosaics to imagine how rich and prosperous the city was before the dreadful day. After the visit, you will drive along the Sorrentine Coast, arriving in Sorrento for dinner (dress code: jacket for men) and an overnight in your new hotel.
day 09 Sorrento
After breakfast, spend the day exploring Sorrento at your own leisure. In the evening, enjoy dinner at your hotel.
day 10 Sorrento-Capri
After breakfast, get ready for an exciting excursion to the island of Capri: one of the most exclusive summer destinations of the Mediterranean! Depending on weather and sea conditions, you will admire the dreamy Blue Grotto on a small rowboat. Afterward, enjoy lunch at a local restaurant and then roam the island at your own pace. In the afternoon, check in at your hotel in Capri, enjoy your dinner and relax for the night.
day 11 Capri-Rome
Spend a leisurely morning eating breakfast in your hotel and then exploring Capri. In the afternoon, depart for Rome where you will check in to your hotel and spend the night.
day 12 Rome Departure
Enjoy one final breakfast before your tour comes to an end.
Inclusions: twin share in 3* & 4* accommodation, breakfast daily, three lunches, 5 dinners, deluxe coach, English speaking tour escort, local tour guides, skip the line entries in Venice, Rome and Pompeii, services and taxes.
Hotels: Florence-4* Mediterraneo, Venice Mestre- 4* Delfino, Rome-4* Santa Costanza or 3* Rome Garden, Sorrento- 3* Villa Maria, Capri- 3* La Bougainville (or similar)
Exclusions: entrance fees & meals not mentioned above and city taxes.
Note: private transfers on request, upgrade to 4 star & 4 star superior hotels on request. Only 1 piece of hand luggage allowed per person, supplements may apply for each additional luggage.