Trace the idyllic lakes, Renaissance cities, lush countryside and ancient heritage of Italy's historic centres of Venice, Florence and Rome, with stops in the Bay of Naples, Assisi and the elegant cliffside village of Sorrento to catch up on Italy's café culture.
Arrive Rome (2 Nights)
Welcome to Rome. After checking in, relax and unwind. Later meet with your Travel Director and fellow travellers. This evening, consider a stroll around this fascinating city and take in the vibrant atmosphere.
Rome Sightseeing and Free Time
Don't miss the opportunity to join an Optional Experience to the famous Sistine Chapel and Vatican Museums. Later your Local Specialist takes you on a sightseeing tour starting with a visit to the Vatican City and the awe-inspiring St. Peter's Basilica to view Michelangelo's statue, the Pietà. Cross the Tiber to view the mighty Colosseum and see the ancient sites of Rome.
Rome – Sorrento – Bay of Naples
Today journey south to the Bay of Naples and stop in the nearby resort of Sorrento. Consider an Optional Experience to Positano and the Amalfi Coast. Later enjoy dinner at the hotel.
Bay of Naples – Cassino – Assisi
Perhaps join an Optional Experience guided walking tour of Pompeii, which laid undiscovered beneath a layer of volcanic ash for centuries after the eruption of Mount Vesuvius. Afterwards, leave the Bay of Naples and view the monastery at Cassino, the scene of fierce battles during the Second World War. Continue north to the mystical town of Assisi, built on the fertile slopes of Mount Subasio in Umbria.
Assisi – Venice (Oriago) (2 Nights)
Your morning orientation tour of Assisi reveals a town that has changed little since the time of St. Francis, who was born here in 1182. See the sights of St. Francis's birthplace, including the medieval ramparts and the Basilica of St. Francis. Your journey continues north across the dramatic Apennine Mountains to the magical, romantic city of Venice.
Venice Orientation and Free Time
Watch the Venetian craftsmen at work creating local specialities at a glassblowing workshop on Giudecca Island. Then cruise by private launch to St. Mark's Square in the heart of Venice. Admire the Bridge of Sighs, the ornate Doge's Palace and the Byzantine Basilica of St. Mark. Spend free time afterwards exploring this fascinating city or perhaps take a trip out across the lagoon to the island of Burano for a relaxing meal.
Venice (Oriago) – Verona – Lake Como – Italian Lakes (Varese)
Head west across the plains of Veneto to Verona, the home of Shakespeare's star-crossed lovers. View the vast Roman Arena, where concerts are still held regularly and walk to view Juliet's Balcony. Continue north to the Italian Lake District to visit Lake Como, a favoured summer retreat of the rich and famous before arriving at your hotel where you dine tonight.
Italian Lakes (Varese) – Pisa – Florence
This morning travel south to the famous town of Pisa. Explore the Square of Miracles, featuring the Leaning Tower, Cathedral and Baptistery. There is time to shop for souvenirs and take pictures. Arrive later at your hotel near Florence, birthplace of the Renaissance.
Florence Sightseeing – Rome
There are few cities in the world with an artistic legacy to equal that of Florence. Your Local Specialist gives a superb commentary of the city's history during your walking tour, which includes views of the Baptistery, the Ponte Vecchio, the Cathedral of Santa Maria del Fiore, the impressive Giotto's Bell Tower, and a visit to Piazza della Signoria. Learn about the quality and workmanship of one of this city's historic industries at a demonstration of Florentine leathercraft. Don't forget to try a gelato! Later, travel back to the Eternal City. This evening in Rome you might like to celebrate the end of your holiday in style.
This morning say 'arrivederci' to Italy, your Travel Director and newfound friends at the end of an unforgettable holiday. Transfers are available to Rome Fiumicino Airport. Conditions apply.