Welcome to Italy. After being greeted by your Travel Director at Milan's Malpensa Airport, your transfer departs at 09:30 or 12:30. Join your Travel Director at 17:30 and head to L'antica Riva, an elegant restaurant on the shores of Lake Como known for serving delicious fresh produce. Your Welcome Dinner provides the opportunity to mingle and get to know your fellow travellers over a pleasant evening.
Journey through the beautiful Italian lake district past Lakes Iseo and Garda to the floating city of Venice, Queen of the Adriatic. Your hotel offers authentic Venetian charm as it reflects the history and culture of the surrounding area.
Even for the experienced traveller, there can be no better joy than waking up in Venice. Transfer to Giudecca Island to witness the art of glassblowing with skilled artisans. Then appreciate the splendour of Venice as you cruise by private launch to see Palladio’s San Giorgio Maggiore to St. Mark’s Square. Your Travel Director will explain the glorious history of La Serenissima, once one of the greatest trading centres of the world – its wealth and power is echoed by the riches of St. Mark’s Basilica. See the Doge’s Palace and its adjoining Bridge of Sighs. Spend the afternoon as you wish. Later, on your romantic gondola serenade, glide along the atmospheric canals while musicians set the mood with traditional songs.
Follow the fertile valley of the River Po, into the peaceful landscapes of Tuscany. Continue to Pisa to see the world-famous Leaning Tower in the Square of Miracles as well as the 11th century cathedral and baptistery. Venture on to beautiful Florence - a treasure house of the Renaissance. Explore Florence with Insight Choice. Choose between a visit to the Accademia Museum with an art historian to see Michelangelo's monumental statue, David. Alternatively, wander through the market stalls on a guided shopping tour and enjoy all the treats and trinkets on show. With your Local Expert, admire the marble-clad Cathedral and Baptistery and wander Piazza della Signoria, an open-air gallery filled with Renaissance sculptures. In the evening, dinner is served with a selection of Tuscany's finest wines, presented by an expert sommelier who explains each of the wines being served.
Florence is known for its quality leather goods and you will be privy to the secrets of traditional Florentine leatherwork when you visit a local workshop. The rest of the day is free for you to fully immerse yourself in the Tuscan capital. Perhaps shop for luxury goods around Santa Croce or relax and soak up the atmosphere in one of the many street cafes. Be sure not to miss the magnificent museums and galleries that house some of the most famous works of art in the world. In the evening, there is an opportunity to sample the true flavours of the region with a sumptuous optional Tuscan dinner, served with local wine.
Journey through the vineyards of the Chianti region passing Lake Trasimeno, one of the Italian Peninsula’s largest lakes and site of a great battle in ancient times against Hannibal and his war elephants. Continue up the foothills of the Apennine Mountains to reach delightful Assisi, a stone-built town spilling over the steep hillside. With a Local Expert, visit the tomb of St. Francis and see the beautiful frescoes by Giotto in the great basilica, before continuing along the valley of the River Tiber towards the Eternal City of Rome. In the evening, why not throw your coin into the Trevi Fountain to ensure your return to the city?
In the morning enjoy the very best of the city’s highlights including visiting the magnificent St. Peter’s Basilica in the Vatican. Afterwards, enjoy some free time, perhaps joining a tour of the Colosseum? In the afternoon, gain exclusive fast-tracked VIP entry into the Vatican Museums with a Local Expert. Admire the Papal art collection and observe the stunning Museo Gregoriano Profano which documents various moments and themes in classical art, from Ancient Greece through to the late Imperial Roman age. You'll then enter the Sistine Chapel where you'll marvel at Michelangelo’s masterpiece on its ceiling. After, dine in the Vatican's elegant Cortile del Giardino Quadrato, should weather permit, where you will enjoy incredible views of the cupola of St. Peter's during your private VIP Celebration Dinner.
Bid farewell to the glories of Italy. Departure transfers arrive at Rome’s Fiumicino Leonardo da Vinci Airport at 07:00 and 09:30.