Treasures of Italy
"Mangia bene, ridi spesso, ama molto," means "eat well, laugh often and love much." I don't think there is any other expression that more completely describes the Italian way of life." -Annelies Zwijns, Travel Director
10 nights from £3212pp
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Treasures of Italy Itinerary
Day 1 Welcome to the Eternal City of Rome.
Your complimentary, private transfer takes you to your local departure airport. Rome is the former religious, political and commercial heart of a vast empire. You will be met on arrival at Rome's Fiumicino Leonardo da Vinci Airport with transfers departing for your hotel at 09:30, 12:30 and 15:30. Join your Travel Director at 17:30, before getting to know your fellow travellers over a delicious Welcome Dinner with wine at a local restaurant.(Dinner with Wine) Meals: Dinner with Wine Locations: Rome
Day 2 VIP Vatican and Rome with a Local.
In the morning, you will be joined by a Local Expert who will lead you through the priceless art collection of the Vatican Museums culminating beneath Michelangelo’s famous ceiling in the Sistine Chapel. Your VIP visit includes fast-track entry to the museums and a behind-the-scenes look at the Bramante Staircase, a part of the Vatican closed to the general public. More of Michelangelo’s genius is on display next door in St. Peter’s Basilica. Enjoy some free time, or perhaps join a tour inside the Colosseum? Rome is about art, antiquity, piazzas and pizzazz, and our included walking exploration has it in abundance. Toss a coin into the spectacular Trevi Fountain, see the Pantheon, the best preserved monument from the Roman period with a local, and enjoy free time in Piazza Navona.(Breakfast) Meals: Breakfast Locations: Rome
Day 3 Ancient Pompeii and the Isle of Capri.
Journey to the ill-fated town of Pompeii, frozen in time when it was engulfed by an eruption of Vesuvius in 79 AD. Walk with a Local Expert through cobbled streets to learn about Roman life in the first century. Enjoy a refreshing lemon granita. Then continue to the Bay of Naples and board your hydrofoil to the Isle of Capri. In brilliant sunshine, enjoy a scenic drive by open-top taxi past orange and lemon groves to your hotel, then appreciate the glorious vistas over the rugged coastline and sparkling sea.(Breakfast) Meals: Breakfast Locations: Rome
Day 4 The Isle of Dreams.
Wake up refreshed on this delightful island. Visit Capri town, with its whitewashed houses, winding alleyways and small cafes. A Local Expert escorts you to the luxuriant Caesar Augustus Gardens for views of the Faraglioni rocks. The afternoon is yours to devote to Capri’s fashionable boutiques, craft shops and artisans studios. Alternatively, perhaps join an Optional Excursion to the Positano? A boat delivers you to mainland Italy where you are driven along the coastline with its clear blue waters, to reach the artist's paradise of Positano, clinging to the cliff face. After time to explore, you are then returned to the Isle of Capri by another boat transfer. As the glow of twilight descends and the day-trippers have returned to their mainland hotels, the island is yours to saunter along scenic paths, gather with the locals in the piazzetta or relax with a glass of wine at an al-fresco restaurant.(Breakfast) Meals: Breakfast Locations: Florence
Day 5 The Autostrada del Sole to Florence.
Descend to the port by private open top taxis and take the hydrofoil across the bay to Naples. Follow the Autostrada del Sole north passing Rome and continuing through the Province of Umbria. Journey through idyllic Tuscan landscapes to Florence, centre of art and culture, and the heart of the Italian Renaissance.(Breakfast / Dinner with Wine) Meals: Breakfast, Dinner with Wine Locations: Florence
Day 6 Florence, Birthplace 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. See the multi-coloured marble cathedral, Giotto's bell tower and the baptistery, adorned by Ghiberti's Gates of Paradise. Visit the Piazza della Signoria - an open-air museum and still the political heart of Florence. Stroll on to Piazza Santa Croce, famous for its basilica and the quality of its luxury goods. The joys of Florence are varied so the afternoon will be free for your own personal exploration.(Breakfast) Meals: Breakfast Locations: Florence
Day 7 Cinque Terre and Portofino to Santa Margherita.
The famous Italian Riviera and the Cinque Terre are a highlight of your journey as a UNESCO World Heritage Site and one of Italy’s most beautiful landscapes. With a Local Expert, appreciate the views as you approach one of the picturesque fishing villages by boat. Spend some time exploring the old medieval quarter or the popular sandy beach before continuing along to the elegant seaside village of Portofino, epitome of la dolce vita. Admire the colourful houses, browse the boutiques or stay a while in the cafe bars on the piazzetta, watching the yachts moored in the harbour.(Breakfast / Dinner with Wine) Meals: Breakfast, Dinner with Wine Locations:
Day 8 Lake Maggiore.
In the morning, journey north to the beautiful Italian Lake District, a favourite retreat of the rich and famous where alpine scenery combines with lush subtropical vegetation. Relax and enjoy an afternoon at leisure at this popular resort and beautiful lake or perhaps take a cruise out to the lovely Borromean Islands? For your dining pleasure, you are invited to choose from a hand-picked selection of local restaurants for your Dine-Around Evening.(Breakfast / Dinner with Wine) Meals: Breakfast, Dinner with Wine Locations:
Day 9 To Venice with Wine along the way.
Follow the southern fringes of the European Alps to the vineyards by the shores of Lake Iseo. Here, winemaking traditions run deep. Taste the delicious vintages produced with a master vintner at a family-owned estate. Continue to the unique city of Venice — a complete step back in time to the 16th century.(Breakfast) Meals: Breakfast Locations: Venice
Day 10 Venice and the Magic of La Serenissima.
Cruise to a traditional arts centre on Giudecca Island to delight in the skillful art of glassblowing. Visit St. Mark’s Square where the city’s former wealth and power is evidenced by the riches of St. Mark’s Basilica and admire the Doge's Palace with its adjoining Bridge of Sighs. The waterways of Venice are renowned for gondolas that drift by. Take your seat on a gondola and be serenaded through the myriad of beautiful canals, passing water-lapped doorways and Rococo palaces. In the evening, cruise the islands of the Venetian lagoon to arrive at Burano, famous for its candy coloured houses. Sit down to a sumptuous Celebration Dinner with wine, sampling the local specialities.(Breakfast / Dinner with Wine) Meals: Breakfast, Dinner with Wine Locations: Venice
Day 11 Arrivederci Venice.
Alas, you must bid farewell to this enchanting city. Your departure transfer arrives at Venice Marco Polo Airport at 08:00 and 09:30. On arrival at your home airport, your driver will greet and escort you to your waiting car for your private transfer home.(Breakfast) Meals: Breakfast Locations: Venice
- Italian Lakes: For your Dine-Around Evening, you are offered a selection of hand-picked local restaurants to choose from, each with its own distinctive ambience and cuisine.
- Lake Iseo: Visit a local winery passed down through the generations and taste their latest vintages with a master vintner.
- Venice: Cruise to the charming fisherman's island of Burano to enjoy a delicious Celebration Dinner with wine and new-found friends.
- Dining Summary: 10 Breakfasts (B) and 5 Dinners with Wine (DW), all with tea or coffee.
- Vatican City: Gain VIP access into the Vatican Museums and be among the select few to admire the famous Bramante Staircase. Admire the Popes’ treasure-trove and witness the genius of Michelangelo in the Sistine Chapel. Venture inside St. Peter's Basilica and see Michelangelo's Pietà, and the splendid dome.
- Rome: Explore the backstreets of Rome and experience local life, alongside a passionate Roman who will explain how modern life takes place around ancient treasures like the Trevi Fountain, the Pantheon and Piazza Navona, the Living Room of Rome.
- Venice: Witness the ancient skill of glassblowing as you watch artisans create delicate works of art.
Top Rated Highlights
- Rome: See the mighty Colosseum and Roman Forum. You will also see other medieval buildings, including Renaissance palaces and Baroque churches, scattered throughout the city.
- Pompeii: Walk with a Local Expert through the cobbled streets of this ill-fated town.
- Isle of Capri: Cruise between the island and mainland by hydrofoil and get a flavour of the jet-set lifestyle with two nights on this famous isle.
- Isle of Capri: Relax and enjoy the views as you are driven in an iconic open-top taxi.
- Isle of Capri: Explore Capri with your Local Expert and see the whitewashed houses, winding alleyways, small cafes, fashionable boutiques and artisans studios.
- Isle of Capri: Discover the luxuriant Caesar Augustus Gardens with a Local Expert and admire views of the Faraglioni rocks.
- Florence: During your guided walk see the cathedral, bell tower and Gates of Paradise on the baptistery. Visit the political heart of the city, Piazza della Signoria.
- Florence: See the area around Santa Croce Basilica, famous for the quality of its luxury goods and witness a leather-work demonstration.
- Cinque Terre: These hidden UNESCO World Heritage protected fishing villages, are ingeniously fashioned into impossibly steep hillsides. Join a Local Expert to travel to them on the 19th century railway line through some of the most dramatic coastal scenery on earth.
- Portofino: Delight in a taste of la dolce vita as you explore this elegant fishing village and cruise to Santa Margherita.
- Venice: With your Travel Director cruise to St. Mark's Square and see the Doge's Palace, Bridge of Sighs and St. Mark's Basilica.
- Venice: To the tune of accompanying musicians, you will be serenaded through the atmospheric canals by gondola, past water-lapped doorways and Rococo palaces where once the likes of Casanova would have come calling.
- Scenic Drives: Admire the classic Italian countryside views of Umbria, the rolling hills of Tuscany and the beauty of the Italian Lake District.
Included Insight Services
- Our highly-skilled Travel Director will ensure your journey is seamless, serving as your expert guide, consummate organiser, and friend overseas.
- Enjoy the comfort of Insight's luxury, air-conditioned, 40-seat coach with double the standard legroom and onboard washroom.
- Personal radio headsets give you the freedom to wander during visits to famous highlights, without missing any of your Local Expert's fascinating commentary.
- We carry your bags for you and promptly deliver them to your hotel door.
- Hotel and restaurant tips are included - you'll never have to worry about how much to give, nor search for foreign currency. We also include all taxes and porterage charges at hotels.
- Stay connected with friends and family with our complimentary coach and hotel Wi-Fi (where available).
- From time to time, your Travel Director will enchant you with an Insight Flourish, which is a local specialty representing the destination.
- If your arrival and/or departure flights are as per the itinerary start and end dates, then transfers are available at scheduled times. If your flights are outside these times, or you have booked additional nights accommodation with Insight Vacations, you may purchase transfers or make your own way from/to the airport.