Italy at Leisure 2017 - XITL
Number of Days: 10
Experience the fantastic food, rich culture, beautiful landscapes and historic medieval cities of northern Italy. With plenty of free time - including free days in Rome, Tuscany and Venice - you'll be able to explore at a leisurely pace, taking in everything this incredible country has to offer! Highlights include a Rome sightseeing tour, a visit to Siena, San Gimignano, Florence & Pisa, and guided walking tours of the Vatican City and Florence.
Like all our tours, this itinerary is a guaranteed departure, and you will be accompanied for the duration by an experienced and passionate tour leader. Our tour busses are modern, comfortable and air conditioned, and at each hotel we include free wi-fi in your tour package
Welcome to Rome! The first day of the tour is an arrivals day: meet up with your tour guide at our accommodation in the afternoon and prepare for the tour of a lifetime! If you arrive early, head into the city and see some of the sites that make Rome famous the world over. An ancient city that has seen the rise and fall of entire empires, there is no shortage of historical real estate to feast your eyes on. Not to mention designer shopping and brilliant food. Tonight, you’ll meet the rest of the tour group at our included welcome dinner.
This morning we’ll enjoy a guided walking tour of the Vatican City! Included in the price of your Expat Explore tour package is entrance to the Vatican with queue jump privilege and the services of a local guide. Marvel at glittering artworks, vast marble halls and opulent architecture - including the Sistine Chapel! - all part and parcel of the Vatican’s status as the seat of papal power. After enjoying an included lunch, we’ll take you on a driving tour of the Italian capital to introduce you to some of Rome’s many historic sights.
Rome wasn’t built in a day, but luckily you have a free one, in which to explore this Italian capital to your hearts content. The city centre boasts ancient ruins, historical landmarks, religious buildings and a buzzing atmosphere like no other. The Colosseum is spectacular, and for those who wish to enter, there are fabulous views of the city, and an unbelievable feeling of drifting backwards in time, to when gladiators, chariots and lions dominated the arena. Alternatively, join our optional excursion to Naples and the legendary ruins of Pompeii.
Today we’ll drive north through the beautiful countryside to the region of Tuscany. Our first stop is the medieval town of Siena, famous for the 'Palio' horse race and is a UNESCO World Heritage Site. We then stop off in the medieval town of San Gimignano with its iconic towers, to sample local wines and enjoy Antipasto (a selection of cheese, cured meats, bread and olives). To round off a brilliant day of exploring we’ll enjoy an included dinner this evening at our accommodation in a spa town in the Tuscan hills.
Today we’ll explore the undoubted highlights of Tuscany; Florence and Pisa! On arrival in Florence, we’ll take a guided walking tour of the city accompanied by an expert local guide, who will introduce you to all the sights, including Ponte Vecchio, Florence Cathedral and the Basilica of Santa Croce. You’ll then have some free time to explore - why not see Michelangelo’s David in the Galleria dell'Accademia? - before we head for Pisa. Now over 800 years old, it’s a classic sight in Italy and well worth a visit to get a few shots of its distinctive Leaning Tower! This evening we’ll return to our accommodation in Tuscany.
Enjoy a free day to explore Tuscany and the surrounding area. If you enjoyed Florence yesterday it is only a short train ride away - you’ll have all day to explore the museums, art galleries and shops to your heart’s content! Alternatively, you can take our optional excursion to Cinque Terre! Cinque Terre literally means ‘Five Lands’ and consists of five coastal cliff-side towns linked by rail and by footpaths. Overlooking the Mediterranean and amply supplied with fresh produce from the surrounding farms and homesteads, this is a region with all the ingredients to make for an unforgettable day.
Today, we’ll be driving to Venice, and on the way we'll make a couple of fantastic stops. Our first is Modena, where you’ll enjoy a balsamic tasting at a local family farm. We’ll then drive on to Verona where you’ll have some free time to experience Juliet’s balcony – where Shakespeare’s Juliet is said to have been wooed by Romeo - and the Verona Arena. Arriving in Venice this afternoon, we'll get a classic Venetian view from the famous Rialto Bridge on our orientation walking tour, before enjoying a private boat tour of the Grand Canal - a perspective of Venice you will never forget!
Take the time to explore today on your free day in Venice. Get a classic Venetian view from the famous Rialto Bridge, board a gondola and see Venice from the water, try Venetian cuisine, visit museums and art galleries and get the full Venetian experience! Alternatively you can simply relax and soak up the sun on the sandy beaches at Jesolo or Lido. There’s also St Marks Square, The Bridge of Sighs and the Doge’s Palace to see – plus any number of culinary delights to sample, too!
Enjoy another free day to explore Venice and cover everything you couldn’t fit in yesterday! Burano is worth the trip; an island in the Venetian Lagoon, it is known for it’s lacework and brightly coloured houses. Check the schedule of the Teatro La Fenice before you start your tour and you may be able to catch an opera while in Venice. To learn more about the gondola’s visit Squero di San Trovaso, the oldest boatyard in Venice where gondolas are built and repaired. This evening is your last night together with your tour leader and fellow travellers, so we’ll enjoy a special farewell dinner before we part ways tomorrow morning.
After breakfast, we say goodbye to our travel companions and depart for home. We hope you have enjoyed your 10 day Italian tour. Arrivederci, Italia!
Italy at Leisure 2017 - XITL
Rome to Venice
- 9 nights' accommodation in twin rooms with private en-suite facilities. Single travellers have the option to pay a single supplement to ensure a private room.
- 9 breakfasts, 1 lunch, 4 dinners
- All taxes and fees
- Any public transport used as part of the tour (excludes free days)
- Modern air conditioned coach with reclining seats, TV for showing DVDs, and toilet.
- 11 Experiences (including guided walking tours, orientation walks, driving tours of cities plus other exciting experiences)
- From $1999. Single supplement +$669