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Grand Tour of Italy 2019

Grand Tour of Italy 2019

Take in many of Italy’s most popular highlights in this spectacular adventure. From chic Milan, to Lake Como, Florence and Rome and the lesser known Bari, Ostuni and Vasto, and the home of Parma ham! Indulge in delicious Italian food and wine and immerse yourself in culture.

03/09/19 at 3* hotel in / around Metz

 

04/09/19 – 06/09/19 at RURAL RESORT CORAZZIERE ****, in MERONE

www.corazziere.it

 

06/09/19 – 08/09/19 at HOTEL TUSCANY INN ****, in MONTECATINI TERME

www.hoteltuscanyinn.com

 

08/09/19 – 10/09/19 at HOTEL IL CANTICO ***, in ROMA

www.ilcantico.it

 

10/09/19 – 11/09/19 at HOTEL DEI CONGRESSI ****, in CASTELLAMMARE DI STABIA

www.hoteldeicongressi.it

 

11/09/19 – 13/09/19 at UNA HOTEL REGINA ****, in BARI

www.unahotels.it

 

13/09/19 – 14/09/19 at HOTEL MICHELANGELO ****, in MILANO MARITTIMA

www.hotel-michelangelo.com

 

14/09/19 – 15/09/19 at INTER HOTEL SALVATOR ***, in MULHOUSE

www.hotelsalvator.fr

 

Price includes:

 

Door to Door Service

Air-conditioned coach travel

Return ferry crossings

12 nights dinner, bed & breakfast

2 hour guided tour of Milan

Guided excursion of the "Three lakes"

4 hour guided tour of Florence and the Accademia Gallery

Entrance ticket to the Accademia Gallery

2 hour guided tour of Siena

1 x wine tasting

Full day guided tour of Ancient and Classical Rome

Entrance ticket to Colosseum, Roman Forum and Palatine Hill

4 hour guided tour of Vatican Museums

Entrance ticket to Vatican Museums

2 hour guided tour of Naples

Half day guided excursion to Matera and Altamura

1 x bread tasting and olive oil in Altamura

Half day guided excursion to Bari, Alberobello and Ostuni

Half day guided excursion to Vasto and Pescara

2 hour guided tour of Parma

1 x Parma ham and Parmesan cheese tasting

Escorted throughout

 

 

Day 1

An early morning departure as we make our way to Dover for the morning ferry to Calais and on to our overnight hotel in the Metz area.

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Day 2

Today’s excursion is to Milan. The capital of Lombardy has a lot to offer including the cathedral, an imposing edifice, as well as the Scala, the world-famous opera. The elegant and sophisticated city is perfect for a shopping spree. The Galleria Vittorio Emanuele II arcade, with its elegant shops and cafés, is the most visited meeting point of the Milanese. There you can visit one of the lovely cafés.

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Day 3

Today you’ll be driven into 1he stunning West coast of Lake Maggiore, passing by Locarno and Lugano. Along the day, you’ll see the beautiful promenade, Villa Ciani park and the lovely Lugano city centre, with its arbour and St Maria degli Angeli church, richly decorated by frescos. Then you’ll proceed until reaching Como, "city of the silk", with its majestic cathedral and the nice streets. The fascinating lakes invite you to stop and the journey becomes an experience through the different landscapes.

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Day 4

The art and cultural metropolis of Florence is a must for all travellers to Tuscany. The cathedral of Florence dominates the cityscape and together with the Campanile and the baptistery forms one of the most magnificent works of art that can be admired on this earth. The austerity and beauty of the city, the pride and the constancy of the Florentines is manifested in a unique way in the Palazzo Vecchio. You will visit the interesting sights of the historic district on a certified city tour, and among them the Accademia Gallery. Afterwards there will be enough time to admire the jewellery shops on the Ponte Vecchio or to enjoy an Italian espresso.

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Day 5

In Siena, the tour guide will take you on a tour of this important art city. The highlight is the Piazza del Campo, the seashell-shaped square, on which the famous horserace the ‘Palio’ takes place each year. The imposing cathedral embodies a first-class sight. Before getting back on the bus, a refreshing wine tasting, to cuddle you along the journey that will lead you to Rome.

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Day 6

The tour of the Ancient Rome will lead you back to the glory days of the Roman Empire. You will travel back to the time of the gladiators and wander through the ruins of Rome. You will begin your ‘journey through antiquity’ on Capitoline Hill. After an in-depth explanation, you will see the remains of the great Roman era up close, before you climb onto Palatine Hill, to admire the ruins of the imperial palace complex. Next comes the visit to the Colosseum, then you will go back to the Piazza Venezia at the foot of Capitoline Hill. In the afternoon, you will experience ‘classic Rome’ first-hand. First you will walk to the Trevi Fountain. It is said, that whoever throws in a coin backwards over their left shoulder, will soon return to Rome. The tour continues to the Spanish Steps and the Pantheon, the famous antique temple, that was converted into a church by Emperor Hadrian and later served as a tomb for the Italian royal house. The tour ends at the Piazza Novona. The palaces and churches are still standing around the edges of the square, which Emperor Domitian had constructed as an elongated stadium.

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Day 7

In the morning, visit St. Peter’s Basilica, the largest church in the Christian world with its precious adornments: Michelangelo’s Pietà, the venerable Statue of St. Peter, Bernini’s masterpieces as well as the Papal Altar located above St. Peter’s tomb. As a crowning finish, ascend to the dome of St. Peter’s Basilica to witness a breathtaking view of the Italian capital (optional). In the afternoon, enjoy a visit to the Vatican Museums (admission extra). Since the collection of the museums is very extensive, a few targeted objects will be chosen out of the overwhelming selection to be viewed and explained during the tour. The Raphael Rooms and the world-famous Sistine Chapel are also included. Then you will take the coach to continue your tour and next stop will be the capital of Campania. Naples is a city of exuberant vitality at the foot of Mt. Vesuvius, embedded in a spectacular landscape with a view of the islands, which rise up like sculptures in the Gulf of Naples. It combines a cultural-historical and history-charged past with pure passion for modern life. During a city tour you will see the most important sights like the Castel Nuovo, Palazzo Reale and much more.

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Day 8

While leading to Bari, you will enjoy another Italian pearl. The sight of the so-called ‘Sassi’ of Matera is astonishing. They are caves hewn into the blank rock, that were built as relatively comfortable dwellings in ancient times - and served as housing until after World War II. A whipped cream topping of houses, monasteries and churches, shining in pastel hues in the mild light, thrones atop a singular massif. And Matera has even more to offer: Dozens of cave churches

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Day 9

After a walking tour of Bari, you will discover Ostuni, known also as the ‘white city of Apulia’. It is a splendid place, which reigns over olive groves from the Middle Ages. A picturesque labyrinth of alleyways and stairways surprises visitors. Continue on to Alberobello and visit the famous ‘Trulli’. These unique round shepherds- and farmhouses out of white dry masonry walls with black conical roofs form a striking townscape. A stroll through the town full of round houses and beautiful cobble-stone streets is very enchanting.

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Day 10

While getting back through Italy, you’ll have another fascinating stop: the historic district of the city of Vasto, located high up on a hill, has a very special charm with its labyrinth of alleys, its splendid panoramic vista and the numerous historical and cultural sights, including the Roman thermal baths with their beautiful mosaics in the Palazzo d’Avalos from the 16th century, the palace and the cathedral of San Giuseppe. The next stop is Pescara. The large fishing harbour and the longest sand beach of Abruzzo invite exploration.

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Day 11

In addition to the world-famous ham, the former royal city of Parma offers magnificent buildings: the Palazzo Ducale, built following French standards, the wooden Teatro Farnese and the baptistery of the cathedral. During a guided tour you will see all of these sights. As you may not say you’ve been in Parma without knowing the flavour of its ham and cheese, this visit will end with a Parma ham and Parmesan cheese tasting.

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Day 12

Sadly we depart to make our way to our overnight hotel in Mulhouse.

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Day 13

Continuing our journey, we return to Calais for the return ferry back to the UK and home.

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