After hours guided visit to the Vatican & Sistine Chapel, medieval Orvieto, guided visit in the Uffizi and Galleria dell'Accademia, pizza-making in Florence, a lesson in making gelato, high-speed train to Venice, dinner aboard a pirate ship in Venice, guided visits to St. Mark's Basilica and the Doge's Palace.
After-hours tour of the Vatican Museums & Sistine Chapel without the crowds, for unhurried viewing
Multiple-night stays in historic hotels in the heart of Rome, Florence and Venice
Two nights on a private island in the Venetian Lagoon at San Clemente Palace Kempinski Venice, winner of Condé Nast Traveler's 2018 "Top Hotels in Italy/Venice" Reader's Choice Award
Visit to the hilltop town of Orvieto, including a tour of its underground Etruscan caves and honeycombed tunnels
Visit to Pisa and the famed Leaning Tower
First class high-speed rail travel from Florence to Venice
Hands-on pizza making in Florence
Visit to a 17th-century cooking school to learn to make gelato near Piazza Navona in Rome
Exclusive dinner and evening aboard a pirate ship in Venice
Airport transfers on arrival and departure as noted
14 meals (7 breakfasts, 2 lunches, 5 dinners); all gratuities to Tauck Director, local guides & drivers; service charges, taxes and porterage
Back in time to ancient Rome
Tour begins: 2:00 PM, Hotel Splendide Royal Roma. A transfer is included from Rome's Leonardo da Vinci Airport to your hotel. Welcome to Rome, where your tour of the ancient world (and beyond) begins with a drive through the heart of the city to see real-life relics of Imperial Rome, once capital of the ancient world. See the Circus Maximus and other traces of the ancient empire. Walk through one of the Colosseum's 80 entrances, imagining what it was like for ancient gladiators and the Roman crowds who piled into this famous arena to see them, and pose for pictures with Roman Centurions. Join your fellow family travelers tonight for a welcome reception and dinner featuring authentic Italian fare Join your fellow family travelers tonight for a welcome reception and dinner featuring authentic Italian fare.
St. Peter's & Vatican Museums after hours
This morning, enjoy a guided visit to St. Peter's Basilica in Vatican City. Inside this amazing church - one of the world's largest - you'll find the tombs of 91 popes, a Holy Roman Emperor, and a Swedish queen; Michelangelo's Pieta; and the soaring dome designed by Michelangelo, who did not live to see it completed. After a free afternoon, join us tonight for a Tauck Exclusive - an after-hours visit to the Vatican Museums, full of fascinating history and artistic masterpieces. View Michelangelo's famous ceiling in the Sistine Chapel - which the artist originally resisted doing because he considered himself a sculptor, not a painter - without the usual crowds! (Subject to availability and day of visit may vary.)
Through Umbria & Tuscany to Florence
Discoveries abound on your Italy tour adventure today as your family sets off through rural Umbria and Tuscany. The first stop on your travels is walled Orvieto, perched on a volcanic plateau; a guided tour takes you under its cobblestone streets to explore the town's honeycombed medieval tunnels, and caves dating back to the time of the ancient Etruscans. Then it's on to Florence, birthplace of the Renaissance. Upon arrival you'll be treated to a panoramic orientation of the city - from the inside of a vintage Fiat 500*! Arrive at your luxury hotel, steps away from the Piazza della Signoria and the Uffizi Gallery, for a memorable three-night stay.
The city of Pisa and the famed Leaning Tower
An excursion from Florence takes you and your family to Pisa for a look at this maritime city's great medieval buildings - including a glimpse of the remarkable Leaning Tower and more of Pisa's "field of miracles," such as the Duomo and the Baptistry. If you wish, you'll have an opportunity to climb the famed tower for the view from the inside (children 8 - 18 must be accompanied by an adult). After lunch at a local restaurant, return to Florence for an evening spent as you please, and have dinner as you please in one of this grand Renaissance city's many restaurants.
The Uffizi, Galleria dell'Accademia & a night making pizza
Today begins with a walk along the Arno, accompanied by a local guide. Learn about the "other side of the Arno"; the Ponte Vecchio; go through Piazza Santa Trinita and little alleyways where you'll get some insights into the tower houses - then on to Signoria Square with its towering Town Hall. Great Renaissance art awaits as you join your local guide for a tour of one of the world's first, and best, art galleries - the Uffizi Gallery - where you'll see masterpieces galore, including Michelangelo's painting of The Holy Family and Botticelli's The Birth of Venus. After some free time, it's a visit to one of Italy's most famous museums, Galleria dell'Accademia - the oldest art school in the world, home to many famed paintings. Tonight, join us for dinner and a hands-on pizza-making demonstration at a popular local restaurant in Florence.
Via high-speed train to Venice
A first-class rail journey aboard a high-speed train takes your family to Venice, a city of islands where the roads are paved with water, and a treasured memory of any Italy tour. Have lunch at a local restaurant, followed by free time to explore as you please in St. Mark's Square. A canal boat takes you to your hotel, the San Clemente Palace Kempinski Venice - named the #1 hotel in Venice as the winner of Condé Nast Traveler's 2018 "Top Hotels in Italy/Venice" Reader's Choice Award! You're in for a real treat - this beautiful, award-winning hotel is on its own private island, complete with a fantastic pool and walking trails. Embark on a true adventure this evening - a pirate boat excursion around Venice and the islands, with dinner and games.
St. Mark's Basilica, Doge's Palace and time to explore
One of the most iconic spots in Venice is St. Mark's Basilica and the Doge's Palace; the architecture beckons from St. Mark's Square and your visits inside reveal the secrets of the centuries - including the story beind the Bridge of Sighs. If there is any city in Europe that is perfect for just wandering, seeing and experiencing, it is Venice - and you'll have the chance to do just that for the rest of the day. Follow the small, cobbled streets and alleyways to see where they lead, visit a museum or sample some gelato (served warmer and creamier than traditional ice cream). Tonight, everyone meets again for a farewell party at your hotel on your private island in the Grand Canal... by the pool, weather permitting! A spectacular close to a fantastic week.
Tour ends: Venice. Arrivederci! Fly home anytime. A transfer is included from San Clemente Kempinski Palace to Venice's Marco Polo Airport; allow a minimum of 3 hours for flight check-in.