Rest, relaxation & exploration
Experience the magic of some of Europe’s finest cities on this unforgettable, 10-day, two-centre tour that combines leisurely days and balmy evenings with unforgettable tours of ‘must-see, must-do’ Italian gems. From Romeo and Juliet’s ‘fair Verona’ to exquisite Mantova, from incomparable Venice to timeless Florence, and from Tuscan treasures Siena and San Gimignano to the Eternal City Rome, this is Italy at its mesmerising best; full of warmth, charm, fine food and wine – La Dolce Vita indeed.
WHAT DOES THE PRICE INCLUDE?
Day One: Fly to Italy
Fly to Italy, meet your tour manager and transfer to the hotel in Moniga del Garda. Settle into your surroundings, and depending on the time of your arrival, enjoy a first dinner.
Day Two: Included visit to Verona
Your first included excursion is to charming Verona, where you’ll explore its historic centre, fashioned in pink marble. Take a seat in one of the numerous pavement cafes that line the Piazza Bra, opposite the vast Roman amphitheatre, or wander the maze of 13th-century streets that Shakespeare brought to life in his timeless tale of doomed love.
Continue on to Mantova, dubbed the ‘world’s most romantic city’. Surrounded by beautiful lakes, its ancient streets and squares are lined with ornate palazzi, and a skyline of turrets and towers straight out of an Arabian Nights fantasy, Mantova is a delight. Return to Moniga for dinner.
Day Three: Rest and relax
Spend a free day in the hotel and its surroundings, perhaps relaxing on the terrace, with its wonderful views, wandering down to the shore or explore the 10th-century castle above the village. Famed for its rose wine, Moniga is surrounded by vineyards and olive groves, and boasts a medieval heart of narrow streets and alleyways. The major towns of Desenzano and Sirmione are a short distance away by bus, taxi or lake steamer, should you wish to head elsewhere for lunch in the sunshine.
Day Four: Included visit to Venice
Today, journey to incomparable Venice and enjoy a walking tour of this breathtakingly beautiful place; with its innumerable bridges, gondolas and water taxis plying their trades on the Grand Canal. St Mark’s Square, with its cathedral, clock tower and Doges’ Palace is one of the world’s great sights, while close by, joining the palace to the prisons, is the famous Bridge of Sighs. Take a seat in a cafe to watch the world go by, or simply wander through the narrow streets that radiate away from the heart of this endlessly fascinating city.
Day Five: Included visit to Florence
Bidding farewell to Garda’s shores, travel south to Florence, to see for yourself the magnificent Florentine skyline, dominated by the Cathedral of Santa Maria del Fiore, and to explore the splendour of Santa Croce and the beautiful Ponte Vecchio Bridge. Florence is home to the Accademia and Michelangelo’s renowned Statue of David, and the Uffizi, where Botticelli’s famous Birth of Venus can be admired (entrances payable locally).
Continue to Chianciano Terme, your second holiday ‘base’, and enjoy dinner in the hotel.
Day Six: Included visit to Siena and San Gimignano
Head into the Tuscan hills to Siena, one of Europe’s most perfectly preserved medieval cities, with its shell-shaped piazza il Campo, home each year to the traditional Palio horse race. After the opportunity for lunch, journey to San Gimignano, to see its beautiful towers, medieval walls and cathedral, before returning to Chianciano for dinner.
Day Seven: Rest and relax
The delights of the hotel and Chianciano are yours to savour today. The spa town boasts a wonderful climate and waters that have drawn visitors from far and wide for centuries. Book a spa treatment, explore the old hill town above or enjoy the many small bars, cafes and restaurants.
Day Eight: Included guided tour of Rome
The last included excursion sees you spend a day in glorious Rome, one of the most fascinating cities on Earth. Upon arrival, enjoy a guided tour taking in the Colosseum and the Forum, centre of Ancient Rome, the great basilicas of the early Christian Church, and the Baroque fountains into which many a coin has been thrown. In the Vatican City, across the Tiber, the magnificent St Peter’s looks over the vast Square, while the nearby Sistine Chapel houses Michelangelo’s famed frescoes.
Wander through elegant piazzas, delightful gardens and sophisticated shopping streets like the Via Condotti. Relax in a pavement cafe and watch the Roman world go by, and soak up the atmosphere of the city that invented La Dolce Vita, before returning to Chianciano.
Day Nine: Rest and relax
Enjoy a last, restful day in Chianciano, before a final dinner offers a chance to look back over the past wonderful few days.
Day 10: Fly back to the UK
Bid “Arrivederci” to your Tuscan hosts, and transfer to the airport for the return flight to the UK.
Hotel transfer times
The transfer time from the airport to your hotel is approximately 45 minutes from Verona, one hour and 30 minutes from Bergamo and two hours and 30 minutes from Venice. On departure the transfer time from the hotel to Rome is approximately two hours and 30 minutes..
Combining hotel transfers
We sometimes need to combine transfers to and from your hotel. We always try to keep any wait to a minimum, but you may be asked to wait at the airport for up to an hour, while other incoming flights arrive, before the transfer to your hotel. Similarly, we may need to transfer you back to the airport up to three hours before your flight home departs.
Since some attractions visited offer free admission to visitors at certain times of year, we do not include entrance fees. These will be payable locally where applicable. This applies to excursions that are included in the price of your holiday and to excursions booked as optional extras.
If you have notified us of any special requirements, please check that they have been noted and acknowledged. This is especially important with any dietary needs you may have.
The majority of our tours involve a certain amount of walking, including a short walk from the coach stop to the town, attraction or venue you're visiting. If you are bringing a wheelchair, please let us know at the time of booking so that appropriate arrangements can be made.
Occasionally, for operational reasons, we may have to change the order of the excursions on your holiday. The final day-by-day itinerary will be confirmed on your Final Travel Documents, which you will receive approximately three weeks prior to your departure.
Foreign Office Travel Advice
Visit www.gov.uk/foreign-travel-advice to find out the latest Foreign And Commonwealth Office travel advice for your holiday destination, as well as information about passports and visas.