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$220 per day

Cost
$3,300
per person
double occupancy

18 Days

August 3 - 20,
2018

Venice

Lake Como

The Darling's Italian Vacation

RESERVE NOW!
Rome has been a beacon of civilization across the Western World for more than two thousand years, a city to which all roads once led. Your 15-day tour will begin in Rome and then take you to Florence for 5 days and finally to Southern Italy  (Ischia,  the Amalfi Coast, and the Isle of Capri ) before circling back to the Eternal City.  Italy is best experienced at a leisurely and relaxing pace. With 15 days in Italy, you'll have time to slow down and appreciate the culture, it's people and wonderful treasures rather than being on a "whirlwind tour". 

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Your Custom
Vacation
in Italy
 

The spirit of Rome is alive with its fascinating history, and architectural eye-candy of the Coliseum, Pantheon, and St. Peter's Basilica. You'll have 4 fabulous days to walk the cobblestone streets taking in the amazing fountains, famous sculptures,  incredible art and lively piazzas. On the day of your arrival, you will be on the back of a Vespa scooter while a professional driver zips you around Rome showing you the highlights of Rome. 
Florence is a contrast of old and new with its ancient buildings, glittery boutiques, and opulent museums. This cosmopolitan city is a wonderful walking city with surprises at every turn including excellent gelato, food and wine, street markets,  beautiful churches and museums.
Southern Italy - From Florence, you'll arrive in Naples and visit Pompeii  before being 
whisked off by ferry to Ischia. On the island of Ischia there are plenty of family friendly activities: hiking, swimming, gozzi boat trips, lounging at the beach, snorkeling, and more. From here you'll be able to take the ferry to Capri, Positano and Amalfi.

Proposed Schedule

August 3 - Friday - Welcome to Venice!

Upon arrival into the Airport, clear entry formalities, collect your luggge and proceed to the arrivals hall where your English-speaking host will assist with the transfer from Venice Marco Polo Airport to your hotel. 


Quote Includes: Hotel accommodations, personal meet and greet, porter services, private transfer from the arrival hall to the airport boat piers and finally a pre-arranged private water taxi to your hotel.

May 26 - Saturday - Rome 
Vatican City

Early Morning Vatican Tour, Sistine Chapel and St. Peter's Basilica - A tour of the artistic splendor of the Rome of the Popes! This tour will allow you to explore the most significant parts of the Vatican Museums, admire the Sistine Chapel, and end the tour in St. Peter's Square and Basilica, which showcases the Pietà by Michelangelo and the master pieces of Bernini. The kids will enjoy climbing to the top of St. Peter's. Once you climb to the top you will have a view of the city.
This tour of 3.5 hours is offered with special Early Morning Vatican Priority Entrance at 7:30, before the general public is allowed to enter, so you can enjoy the museums and the Sistine Chapel without the large crowds. 

Enjoy the rest of the day at your leisure. You may choose to visit the famous fountains and piazzas: Trevi Fountain, Spanish Steps, Piazza Navona while scouting out the best gelato shops.

Quote Includes:  Driver from your B&B to the Vatican, 3.5 Hour Vatican Tour

May 27 -  Sunday - Rome
Classic Ancient Tour of Rome

An unforgettable plunge into the glorious past of Rome! This 3 hour tour will take you to visit the Colosseum, the Roman Forum,  and the Palatine Hill. You will explore the ancient heart of the Eternal City where the Roman Empire’s politics, religion, customs, and ceremonies were born. This tour will allow you to see some of the most famous ancient buildings and sites of Rome.  If you haven't had enough history you may want to visit the Pantheon and the Capitoline Hill Museum  on your own. 

Quote Includes: Walking Tour of the Coliseum, Roman Forum,  and Palatine Hill.​​

May 28 - Monday - Rome 
​Villa Adrian and Villa d'Este in Tivoli 

Your driver/guide will pick you up at your B & B around 10:00 am and take you to Tivoli (about a 30 km outside of Rome) to visit Tivoli to explore two UNESCO listed villas.  Hadrian’s Villa and Villa d’Este. Have your camera ready to capture incredible ruins, gardens and fountains while learning about the extravagant tastes of the emperors and cardinals who once lived there.  Feel free to explore the villa ruins, thermal baths, temples, palaces and theaters of Hadrian’s Villa  built in the 2nd century AD.  Villa d'Este was built around 1550 during the Renaissance for Cardinal Ippolito II d'Este, Tivoli’s governor.  Walk around taking in the gardens and posing for photos in front of Bernini-designed fountain.
  
Quote Includes: Full day trip to Tivoli (7 hours) - lunch is on your own



Florence Hotel
 A charming hotel in the city center of  Florence with a roof top terrace and restaurant.  I have stayed at this hotel on three different occasions and it is reasonably priced with nice rooms.  It is the ideal place from which to experience Florence and within walking distance to the sites.   Staying in the center of Florence allows you to return to your hotel throughout the day to drop off packages and simply relax.  In the evenings, you'll be able to stroll the streets and enjoy the magic of Florence in its' piazzas after dinner. 
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(Optional) Florence Hotel
Additional $500 pp 
 A unique and unforgettable view of Florence: the city is at its best when seen from the the roof top pool and terrace from your hotel. The hotel is one of the oldest hotels in the city, yet it has been completely renovated while still preserving its original character. It is the ideal place from which to experience Florence.  With its swimming pool and American bar, the terrace is one of the crowning achievements of the hotel. Your hotel with a pool is centrally located in Florence within walking distance to the sites.  Shown below is a premium bedroom with an optional upgrade to a deluxe room with a balcony (based on availability). A family suite may also be available, the manager is confirming the bed situation. Breakfast is included in the price of the hotel.  For the price and having a swimming pool there isn't a better hotel choice in Florence.  Staying in the center of Florence allows you to return to your hotel throughout the day to drop off packages, take swim breaks or simply relax.  In the evenings, you'll be able to stroll the streets and enjoy the magic of Florence in its' piazzas after dinner.
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May 29 - Tuesday - Rome to Florence by Train
Sunset Walking Tour

After breakfast you'll check out of your B&B. Your driver will pick you up and transfer you to the train station. No worries, your driver will walk inside the train station with you and make sure you are on the correct platform for Florence. You'll travel in Club Executive.

When you arrive at the train station it is easy for you to catch a taxi and have him bring you to your hotel in Florence. There is no need for a private driver.

This evening you will have a Sunset Promenade Small Group Walking Tour of Florence to get you acqainted with the city. On you walk you will see Piazza Repubblica, Piazza Duomo, Piazza Signoria, Ponte Vecchio, Oltrarno District.

Quote Includes: Sunset Tour and Accommodations wtih Breakfast

May 30 - Wednesday - Florence
A Day of Leisure

Today is a day of leisure. You'll be given my guide of favorite restaurants, and places to stop for the best artisan gelato. The best way to know about gelato is that the bright colorful gelato piled up high in the windows is mass-produced and made for unknowing tourists. The best gelato is made on site using fresh ingredients and the flavor is superior to the mass-produced. Don't waste your money or calories on the touristy gelato. 

There are many musuems and churches to visit including the Accademia with the Statue of David, Duomo, Uffizi, Santa Croce, to name a few. These are easy to see on your own unless you want a guide to give you the history. There are several guidebooks available when you arrive in Florence.

Quote Includes: Accommodations with Breakfast

May 31 - Thursday - Florence
Tour Siena, Winery & San Gimignano

Today you'll have a small group tour to visit San Gimignano and Siena.
This tour is the perfect combination to enjoy the history, art, views, wine and food of beautiful Tuscany. You will visit two of its most characteristic and lovely towns and the surrounding countryside in comfort and relaxation with a luxurious vehicle and English speaking driver, licensed to bring you very close to all attractions. You'll drive through gorgeous Tuscan landscapes until you reach Siena and begin your tour through the towns narrow streets seeing the highlights of Siena including the magnificent Cathedral and Piazza del Campa.   At the end of your walking tour you will have some free time in Siena to explore on your own. 

After lunch in Siena, it’s another beautiful drive to visit a family owned wine estate surrounded by olive groves and vineyards where you will have time to relax and enjoy an authentic Tuscan lunch of assorted cold cuts, prosciutto, salami, cheeses, buschetta, soup or pasta, salad, followed by dessert and coffee. The meal, of course will be accompanied by the winery’s excellent wines and olive oil, as well as the area’s famous Vin Santo – a sweet dessert wine.

San Gimignano is just a short drive from the winery where you will finish your day with some free time to stroll and shop while admiring the town’s unusual skyline of tall Medieval towers and charming squares, to visit the churches or to taste the famous gelato. Its' unique collection of towers and winding lanes make it a charming destination for those seeking the heart of Tuscany. There were once 72 towers rising above the town's rooftops. Today only about 14 towers remain. There are two excellent shops for gelato in the main square.
You will be back in Florence in the late afternoon or early evening.

Quote Includes: Accommodations with Breakfast, Tour, Lunch

June 1- Friday - Florence
A Day of Leisure

Another day of leisure to explore Florence. There is so much to see it will be impossible to see it all. Walking the streets you may notice all of the beautiful doors, or possibly see the small openings next to the church doors. Because there were no wine shops hundreds of years ago, the locals would go to the churches for their wine. The  Monks would place bottles of wine inside the small openings for the locals to take. The Oltrano district is my favorite area of Florence after you've seen the main sights. The Santo Spirito Church was designed by Brunelleschi .  Although its facade is simple the interior wit its Latin cross and 40 side chapels is beautiful and true to his original design. The wooden crucifix high over the altar was sculpted by Michelangelo, in exchange for being allowed to make anatomical studies on the corposes that came from the convent's hospital.

​Quote Includes: Accommodations and Breakfast

Hotel in Ischia

 This is a small family hotel with an excellent location and fabulous views. Just across the water is the magnificent medieval castle, Castello Aragonese and in the distance you can see the Isle of Capri. It offers a private beach, gourmet restaurant and a mini water park. You can take the private water taxi to the castle. 

All of the hotel rooms come with air-conditioning, satellite televisions and private bathrooms as standard. Some of the rooms also come with a balcony or terrace with a sea view. The hotel is able to offer 2 rooms that are on the same floor and close to each other. For the price originally quoted you can have two deluxe rooms including a balcony, daily breakfast and entrance to the beach club. 

As you enter from the seaside there is a large garden/beach area where there are four swimming pools. Around the pools are deck chairs, sun loungers and umbrellas for when shade is required. Apart from the rooms and the pools, one of the best restaurants on the island is here specializing in fresh fish and pasta dishes. 

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Optional Hotel in Ischia

Overlooking the Gulf of Naples and the Aragonese Castle, your hotel  is set on the island of Ischia, in a location surrounded by ancient pine forests and intimate beaches. WiFi is free throughout but there may not be great reception. This hotel features a wellness and beauty centre including three swimming pools with fresh or thermal water and a variety of spa and anti-aging treatments. The hotel has 90 rooms and has its own private beach area and an pier. Your hotel is conveniently located near the port and several local attractions. You will have two double comfort rooms (one with a park view and one with a sea view). Over 86% of guest reviews are above average.  This may not be the best hotel but it offers a beach, swimming pools, restaurant, and it is close to the port. I HAVEN'T HEARD BACK FROM THE HOTEL REGARDING CONNECTING ROOMS, FAMILY ROOM ETC. 
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June 2 - Saturday - Transfer from Florence to Naples
Tour of Pompeii and Winery Lunch

This morning you will board the train for Naples. Your driver will be there to greet you and take you to the town of Pompeii for a private guided tour. After the tour you will go to a winery for a nice lunch. After lunch you will be dropped off at the ferry and go to the Island of Ischia.


Quote Includes: Club Executive Seating on the train, Driver from Naples Train Station to Pompeii,  and then dropped off at the Naples Port, 
Hotel Accommodations in Ischia.

Note: Ferry tickets are not included in the quote.
The cost of the lunch at the winery is not included
​Entry and Private guide fees are not included

June 3- Sunday - Ischia
A Day of Leisure

This is a day of leisure to visit the beach, swim, or venture from the hotel to one of the nearby sites.
Aragonese Castle - 19 min walk
Castiglione Thermal Park - 39 min walk
Pescatori Beach - 6 min walk
Diocesan Museum - 11 min walk
Piazza degli Eroi - 11 min walk
Museo del Mare - 14 min walk
Guevara Tower - 25 min walk

Quote Includes: Accommodations

June 4 -Monday - Ischia
​The Isle of Capri

This morning you'll board the ferry to Capri. Once you arrive in Capri you will have a tour around Capri on a traditional wooden boat with a spacious sun deck to relax. Your skipper will take you to some of Capri's most beautiful coastal grottoes and secluded coves where you can swim in the crystalline water. If you would like to stop at the Blue Grotto there is a separate ticket price of 14 euros per person to enter the grotto and it must be paid separately).  There are several places on Capri to enjoy lunch or you can pack a picnic for the boat. Suggestion: Have the hotel give you some ice to take and put in the ice chest on the boat. The Italians don't use ice so you will have to ask for it. You will find on board (included in the price) mineral water, cushions, sun cover, towels, a brief printed guide of the Capri coastline, and safety equipment.
Quote Includes:  Accommodations , 3 Hour Boat  PrivateTour Around Capri

June 5- Ischia
​Day of Leisure

Another day of leisure and free time to enjoy Ischia.

Quote Includes: Accommodations

June 6 - Wednesday - Ischia
The Amalfi Coast and Positano

This morning you will go by ferry to visit the Amalfi Coast. The towns of Positano, Minori, Atrani and Amalfi are as if you are looking at a post card. The best views will be from you own private boat when you tour the shoreline.

Quote Includes: Accommodations, Private Boat Tour for 2 Hours

June 7- Thursday - Ischia
​A Day of Leisure

This is your last day on the southern coast of Italy before returning to Rome. Enjoy your day!

Quote Includes: Accommodations

June 8- Transfer from Ischia to Rome

In the afternoon, you'll transfer back to Naples to catch the train to Rome. Your driver will meet you at the port in Naples and transfer you to the train station. He will assist you with the train if you need help locating the correct platform. Your seats will be Club Executive. Once you arrive in Rome, your driver will meet you and transfer you to the hotel located near the airport.

Quote Includes:  Accommodations with breakfast, Transfer from the hotel to the port, Transfer from the Naples port to the train station. 
Private transfer from Rome Airport to Rome Hotel.

June 9 - Arrivederci Italia! 

Today you will depart from Rome and return home to the states. The hotel offers a shuttle to the airport for a nominal fee.
What's Not Included in the Trip Price
  
  • Airfare and airport taxes
  • All transportation not expressed as included is not included
  • Cab fare(s)
  • Ferry transportation
  • Excess baggage, baggage loss and/or forwarding of baggage
  • Travel insurance  
  • Gratuities 
  • Entry fees to museums/galleries and other places except when included with tours
  • Beverages and meals other than what is not specifically mentioned such as breakfast.
  • Medical expenses
  • All personal expenditures
  • Extra charges at the hotel such as  wine that is not included, bottled water, laundry, or other incidental charges
  • Additional linen or towel changes other than what is provided 
  • Expenses related to unforeseen travel conditions, weather conditions, flight delays, train delays, airport blockages, terrorism and strikes.
  • Any travel expense not specified to be included is not included ​​
RESERVE NOW!
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