Grand Tour of Italy with Patsy Gaut

with Rome extension
Oct 1-15, 2020 / 15 DAYS

A land full of history and stunning sites.

The true question on a tour of Italy is, “Where not to go?” The country is bursting with personality and beauty, making the possibilities for cultural…

Your package includes

  • 13 nights in handpicked hotels
  • 13 breakfasts
  • 6 dinners with beer or wine
  • 7 guided sightseeing tours
  • Expert Tour Director & local guides
  • Private deluxe motor coach

Included highlights

Villa Carlotta, Roman Theater of Verona, St. Mark’s Basilica, Florence Duomo, Assisi’s basilicas, Pompeii ruins, Roman Forum, Colosseum

Tour pace

On this guided tour, you’ll walk for about 2 hours daily across moderately uneven terrain, including paved roads and cobblestone streets, with some hi…

Itinerary

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Overnight flight / 1 NIGHT

Oct 01: Travel day

Board your overnight flight to Milan today.

Lake Como Region / 2 NIGHTS

Oct 02: Arrival in Milan & transfer to Lake Como Region

Included meals: Dinner

Welcome to Italy! Transfer to your hotel in the Lake Como region. Then, gather with your group at tonight’s welcome dinner.

Oct 03: Como & Villa Carlotta

Included meals: Breakfast

Head out on a morning trip to explore Como, a city known for its mix of cultural and natural attractions. • Enjoy free time in Como for lunch and shopping, while admiring the lakeside vistas • Transfer to the beautiful Villa Carlotta to soak in spectacular views from the elaborate villa gardens (Please note: If entrance to Villa Carlotta is out of season, you'll take a funicular to Brunate instead.) Enjoy a free evening in the Lake Como region or add an excursion.

Lake Como Cruise & Bellagio
Lake Como Cruise & Bellagio
5 hours
Details

Hop aboard a scenic cruise of Lake Como to soak in some of Italy’s most beautiful estates and gardens. Float past charming lakeside towns to Bellagio, a village whose scenery has inspired poets and young lovers for centuries. You’ll have time to take in Bellagio’s classic beauty before heading to a local restaurant, where you’ll sample cuisine from a carefully chosen menu. Please note: Your included meal may be lunch or dinner as departure time varies by season. This excursion is weather-dependent.5 hours and departs in the evening with dinnerSave $10 when you book this excursion up to 3 days before your tour departs.

Venice / 2 NIGHTS

Oct 04: Venice via Verona

Included meals: Breakfast, Dinner

En route to Venice, stop in Verona and walk through the city with your Tour Director. • Stroll through the city’s UNESCO-recognized historic center • Admire the Roman arena, Piazza delle Erbe, and the balcony of Shakespeare’s Juliet Enjoy free time before continuing on to Venice where you'll enjoy an included dinner.

Oct 05: Sightseeing tour of Venice

Included meals: Breakfast

Admire historic churches, winding canals, and picture-perfect piazzas on a guided tour of the city known as "the Queen of the Adriatic." • Step into the iconic St. Mark's Square and enter St. Mark's Basilica • View the stately Doge's Palace, built in the Venetian Gothic style in 1340 • Marvel at the Bridge of Sighs, the link between Doge's Palace and the New Prison • See a glassblowing demonstration to learn about the city's most celebrated art Enjoy a free afternoon in Venice or add an excursion.

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Gondola Ride: Venice Canal Cruise
25 minutes
Details

More than 100 waterways crisscross Venice, and boarding a sleek black gondola to explore them has become a time-honored tradition. On this memorable excursion, join your fellow travelers for a tour through the canals of Venice. Please note: This excursion runs as weather permits. A private two-person gondola ride is available for an additional cost.25 minutes and departure time variesSave $10 when you book this excursion up to 3 days before your tour departs.

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Private Gondola Ride: Canal Cruise for Two
25 minutes
Details

More than 100 waterways crisscross Venice, and boarding a sleek black gondola to explore them has become a time-honored tradition. On this memorable excursion, you’ll enjoy a private gondola cruise for two through the canals of Venice. Please note: Cost is per person and both travelers must book the excursion. This excursion runs as weather permits.25 minutes and departure time variesSave $10 when you book this excursion up to 3 days before your tour departs.

Florence / 3 NIGHTS

Oct 06: Florence via Ferrara

Included meals: Breakfast, Dinner

On your way to Florence, stop in Ferrara. There, you’ll have free time to eat lunch and explore the city’s historic center, home to beautiful Renaissance architecture including Este Castle and Palazzo dei Diamanti. Continue on to Florence and sit down for an included dinner.

Oct 07: Sightseeing tour of Florence

Included meals: Breakfast

Set off on a guided tour of Florence, the city at the center of the Renaissance. • View the legendary Florence Cathedral, known as the Duomo • Pass Giotto’s Campanile, a masterpiece of Gothic architecture • See the medieval Ponte Vecchio and Piazza della Signoria, center of Florentine life • Step inside the Basilica of Santa Croce, burial site of Michelangelo, Machiavelli, and Galileo Later, enjoy free time to continue exploring Florence or add an excursion.

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Galleria dell'Accademia Museum
2 hours
Details

Home to Michelangelo’s masterpiece David, the Galleria dell'Accademia is one of the most famous museums in Florence. Join a local guide for a tour of the museum as you learn about Renaissance art history and view a variety of pieces, including the marble statue of David.2 hours and departure time variesSave $10 when you book this excursion up to 70 days before your tour departs.

Oct 08: Free day in Florence

Included meals: Breakfast

Enjoy a free day in Florence or add an excursion.

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Siena & San Gimignano: Tuscan Hilltowns
10 hours
Details

Discover the essence of Tuscany on a full-day excursion. In Siena, a local guide introduces you to the town and its black-and-white marble duomo, where you’ll find brilliantly colored 16th-century frescoes in the Piccolomini Library. You’ll have some free time to explore the Campo, the square that serves as the center of civic life in Siena. Then, journey through the countryside to the town of San Gimignano, where you’ll have some free time to explore the city’s medieval towers or simply admire the Tuscan hills. Later, you’ll head to a nearby vineyard, where an included wine tasting awaits. Please note: This excursion involves a moderate amount of walking.10 hours and departs in the morningSave $10 when you book this excursion up to 3 days before your tour departs.

Assisi / 2 NIGHTS

Oct 09: Sightseeing tour of Assisi

Included meals: Breakfast, Dinner

Drive through spectacular Umbria to hillside Assisi, where you’ll enjoy a guided tour of the town’s UNESCO World Heritage sites. • Visit Assisi’s lower and upper basilicas • See Giotto’s magnificent frescoes and other late-medieval art Sit down for an included dinner this evening.

Oct 10: Free day in Assisi

Included meals: Breakfast

Spend a free day in Assisi or add an excursion.

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Perugia: City Highlights & Wine Tasting
6 hours
Details

Discover Perugia on a guided tour. While the city is the capital of the Umbria region, it still maintains a charming feel thanks to its rich collection of Renaissance art and sweeping countryside views. You’ll see Perugia Cathedral, Palazzo dei Priori, Fontana Maggiore, and the shops of Corso Vannucci. Enter the Collegio del Cambio, home to the historic exchange guild. The building dates back to the 13th century and you'll step inside to view famous, well-preserved frescoes by Renaissance painter Pietro Perugino. Then, head to the Rocca Paolina fortress for a lunch of typical Umbrian cuisine that incorporates seasonally fresh ingredients. Warm, hearty foods like lentil soup will be served in the fall and winter. Whereas summer will bring fresh, bright pasta dishes. You’ll also visit a cave wine cellar to enjoy a tasting of three wines—a local white, red, and Vin Santo, or dessert wine.6 hours and departs in the morning, lunch includedSave $10 when you book this excursion up to 3 days before your tour departs.

Sorrento Peninsula / 2 NIGHTS

Oct 11: Sorrento Peninsula via Pompeii

Included meals: Breakfast, Dinner

En route to the Sorrento peninsula, stop in Pompeii for a guided tour of the city’s famed ruins. • Discover how Roman citizens lived before Mount Vesuvius erupted in 79 A.D. • View the excavated Roman ruins of theaters, villas, temples, and baths Continue on to the Sorrento peninsula and sit down for an included dinner.

Oct 12: Free day on the Sorrento Peninsula

Included meals: Breakfast

Spend a free day on the Sorrento peninsula or add an excursion.

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Capri: A Day on the Iconic Island
8 hours
Details

Travel by ferry to the fabled Isle of Capri, a beloved resort since the days of the Roman Republic. Weather permitting, you’ll enjoy a boat ride around the island. Later, you’ll enjoy free time to discover why everyone from Roman emperors to Sophia Loren have spent their vacations in Capri. If weather prohibits a boat ride, you’ll travel to the village of Anacapri, which offers stunning views of the surrounding scenery. Please note: This excursion is weather-dependent.8 hours and departs in the morningSave $10 when you book this excursion up to 3 days before your tour departs.

Rome / 2 NIGHTS

Oct 13: Sightseeing tour of Rome

Included meals: Breakfast

Follow in the footsteps of the ancient Romans on a guided tour of the Eternal City.
• Soak up over 2,000 years of history in Imperial Rome, viewing the Arch of Constantine and the Arch of Titus
• Enter the Colosseum, the largest amphitheater of the Roman Empire
• Stop at the ruins of the Forum, once the setting of parades, elections, and trials
• Pass by Palatine Hill to see Circus Maximus, the stadium where ancient Romans raced chariots, and the Baths of Caracalla

Oct 14: Free day in Rome

Included meals: Breakfast, Dinner

Enjoy a full free day in Rome or add an excursion.
This evening, enjoy an elegant, four-course farewell dinner. While you dine, you’ll be treated to some of opera's best-loved arias.
Please note: The opera performance is seasonal and runs from March through November. Dinner will take place at a local restaurant from December through February.

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Iconic Sights: Vatican City
3.5 hours
Details

This guided tour takes you inside the world’s smallest state, Vatican City. Skip the lines upon arrival, turn on your pre-distributed headsets, and immediately begin diving into the Vatican's incredible history with your local guide. First, visit the Vatican Museums, which are over 500 years old and hold many of the world’s most important Classical- and Renaissance-era sculptures. Next, step inside the Sistine Chapel, where you’ll gaze up at what is perhaps Michelangelo’s greatest masterpiece. Finally, pay a visit to the enormous St. Peter’s Basilica, the epicenter of the Roman Catholic faith. The artists who have contributed to its glory are some of the best Italy has ever known, including Bramante, Peruzzi, Raphael, and Michelangelo. Masterpieces await at every turn, from Bernini’s magnificent bronze canopy to Michelangelo’s Pietà. Please note: This excursion is not available on Sundays. Backpacks are not allowed in the Vatican and a dress code of no shorts or sleeveless shirts is enforced.3.5 hours and departure time variesSave $10 when you book this excursion up to 45 days before your tour departs.

Oct 15: Departure

Included meals: Breakfast (excluding early morning departures)

Transfer to the airport for your flight home or extend your stay in Rome.

Extension / Starting from $349 pp

Rome / 2 NIGHTS

Only in Rome can you sip cappuccino at a cafe in front of the Pantheon, buy grapes at a centuries-old market, and have an audience with the pope—all in one morning. For a mix of spectacular art, grand history, and exuberant street life, no other city comes close.

Oct 15: Free day in Rome

Included meals: Breakfast

Enjoy a free day in Rome or add excursions.

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Rome Home-Hosted Dinner
3 hours
Details

Join a local at their home in Rome to enjoy traditional dishes and dine like a true Italian. During this dinner, you’ll receive an authentic understanding of your host’s day-to-day life while learning about Italian culture and traditions from a new perspective.3 hours and evening with dinnerSave $10 when you book this excursion up to 20 days before your tour departs.

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Ancient Roman Ruins of Ostia Antica
4 hours
Details

Situated on the Mediterranean at the mouth of the Tiber River, Ostia was once the bustling seaport for the city of Rome and home to more than 50,000 people in the second century. When the Roman Empire fell, the port was abandoned and eventually covered in silt from the river—a natural phenomenon that preserved much of the ancient architecture. You’ll take a guided tour of the excavated city, viewing the remnants of the ancient Roman ruins, including a forum, a theater, bars and restaurants, public baths, religious temples, and apartment blocks, many of which are still decorated with the original mosaics and painted walls.4 hours and departure time variesSave $10 when you book this excursion up to 3 days before your tour departs.

Oct 16: Free day in Rome

Included meals: Breakfast

Spend another free day exploring Rome or add an excursion. This evening, enjoy a farewell drink as you celebrate your trip with your fellow group members.

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Ancient Rome: St. Paul’s Basilica & the Catacombs
4 hours
Details

Descend into Rome’s ancient catacombs, where early Christians buried saints and popes alongside commoners. A local guide will lead you through burial chambers before your visit to St. Paul’s Basilica, one of the four most important basilicas of Rome, originally founded by Constantine the Great. The Basilica also houses the tomb of St. Paul. Please note: Shorts and sleeveless shirts are not permitted within the basilica. Also, this excursion involves extensive walking and may be inadvisable for claustrophobic travelers.4 hours and departure time variesSave $10 when you book this excursion up to 3 days before your tour departs.

Oct 17: Departure

Included meals: Breakfast (excluding early morning departures)

Transfer to the airport for your flight home.

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* Restrictions Apply:

Prices are per person based on double occupancy, before flights, and vary by departure date. Select your preferred departure date and departure city to view your tour price with flights and hotel transfers included. Changes or cancellation will result in a fee of up to the total tour price. Last-minute specials are not combinable with any other promotional discount. Promotional discounts not combinable with any other promotional offer, including Group Coordinator and Group Benefit programs. Applicable airline baggage fees are not included. Please contact the airline for more information. Some countries may require aircraft insecticide treatment for inbound foreign flights. Such countries can be found at grouptoursite.com/insecticide. To view Go Ahead's complete Terms & Conditions, visit grouptoursite.com/terms. The tour operator for your trip is EF Education First International Ltd. CST 2060043-20.

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