Upon Landing at Rome Fiumicino airport you will be met by your private English speaking driver for a direct transfer to your boutique hotel: Sofitel Villa Borghese 5***** (directly booked by you). Check in at the hotel and rest of the day will be at leisure. In a serene oasis in the heart of Rome, the five-star Sofitel Rome Villa Borghese is an enchanting boutique hotel. Set in an historic building dating back to the 1890s, the hotel enjoys splendid views over the Villa Borghese park. The Spanish Steps, Trevi Fountain and Via Veneto provide the backdrop to the area catapulted to fame by the 1960s movie 'La Dolce Vita.' Today it is the exclusive reserve of dazzling designer boutiques, restaurants and bars. Just like the nearby Villa Medici, home to the French Academy in Rome, the Hotel Villa Borghese is itself a real museum. The elegant lobby and the Littérature room boast a curated collection of artwork on display for your enjoyment. Each elegant room features chic décor and premium Hermès toiletries, as well as other little luxuries. Relax in your retreat as you look out over the Villa Borghese park and the enchanting streets of Rome.
Day 2 – Rome: Vatican Museums
After breakfast, meet your private English speaking driver and guide at your hotel and together you will reach the Vatican Museums. Once there, your specialist guide will introduce you to the masterpieces of such great painters as Raffaello, Michelangelo and Leonardo da Vinci. This is one of the greatest collections of art in the world, a collection gathered over the centuries by the Popes. You will be enthralled and enchanted by the Cortile della Pigna ("Court of the Pinecone") and also continuing on to the and the celebrated Raphael’s rooms. Delight yourselves with the stunning vision of the Sistine Chapel, and finally direct access into Saint Peter's Basilica; a sacred place designed and executed by some of the greatest architects of the 16th century, from Bramante to Michelangelo, from Raffaello to Bernini. After this visit, you will have the rest of the day at leisure.
Day 3 – Rome: AM Colosseum / PM Rome Highlights
After breakfast at your hotel, you will be met by your private English speaking driver and guide in the hotel lobby and together you will reach the Ancient part of the Eternal city: Colosseum, Palatine Hill and Roman Forum. With direct access to this remarkable landmark and no waiting in long lines, you will be awestruck even before entering. Once inside, your private guide will bring to life the ancient world of the various emperors, noblemen, aristocrats, gladiators and wild beasts that once populated this building. You will then be accompanied to the nearby Roman Forum, known as the "heart" of Ancient Rome, and the commercial, political and religious center. End of the tour and free time for lunch at leisure. After lunch, you will meet up again with your driver and guide for a tour of the major highlights of Rome: Fontana di Trevi, famous all over the world and immortalized in various films. Here you will be able to partake in the local legend: if you toss a coin into the water from over your shoulder, then you are certain to come back to Rome. From here, you will head to the Spanish Steps and to Piazza del Pantheon, both adorned with magnificent fountains. Then, you will arrive in Piazza Navona, where you will be able to admire three very famous fountains: Fontana del Moro, Fontana del Nettuno and Fontana dei Quattro Fiumi. There is a popular legend around this last fountain, built by Bernini: the River- God representing the Rio della Plata appears to be covering his own eyes, as if the sculpture was afraid that the bell tower of the church of Sant’Agnese in Agone in front of him might collapse because it was built by Bernini's rival, Borromini, you will learn all about it. By the end of the tour, you will understand why the English poet, Percy B. Shelley wrote: “the fountains alone are enough to justify a journey to Rome”. This tour will stay in your heart forever.! At the end of the tour, your driver will accompany you back to your hotel.
After breakfast and check out, meet your private English speaking driver and transfer to Rome railway station. From there you will get your fast train to Naples. Upon arrival in Naples you will be met by your driver who will chauffer you to your hotel in Naples: Hotel Royal Continental 4****. We will book 1 Double Superior Room with sea view. Check in and time at leisure. Just in front of Castel dell’Ovo, on one of the most beautiful seafronts, the Royal Continental Hotel is delightfully located and close to elegant shopping streets, Palazzo Reale and Teatro San Carlo. Opened in 1955, the hotel is decorated with original furniture designed by the great Italian architect Gio Ponti. Royal Continental offers 397 rooms provided with every comfort, 17 meeting rooms furnished with modern technologies, an Auditorium that can hold up to 530 people and an underground parking for 120 cars. Free Wi-Fi. It is possible to try tasteful national and regional recipes coined with plenty of imagination and tradition at the restaurant in front of the sea and the castle. The Royal Continental Hotel has a sea-water pool on a beautiful panoramic terrace from which it is possible to admire a gorgeous view of the Gulf of Naples.
Day 5 – Naples: Pompeii & Herculaneum with lunch in a winery
After breakfast at your hotel, you will meet your private English speaking driver and travel to Pompeii where, you will meet your private English speaking guide for your tour at the Pompeii excavations. You will admire the ruins of this famous city that, in AD 79 was submerged by lava and ashes from the nearby volcanic eruption of Mt. Vesuvius. You will be able to examine from close up the daily life of this Roman population and how it was devastated by one of the worst natural disasters in ancient history. The excavations of Pompeii are, due to their importance and relevance, the most visited archeological site in the world. After the tour, your driver will accompany you to a winery settled close to the Archeological Site. Here, you will enjoy a guided tour within the 4 hectares of the property, enjoy historical witnesses, vineyards and elegant cellars, visit the Museum of Wine in an Ancient Building from the 16th century. The tour ends up with the Wine Tasting and tasting of traditional Neapolitan dishes and some ancient roman ones too. After lunch, you will meet up with your driver and travel to Herculaneum: here, together with your guide, you will discover the city that was destroyed, along with Pompeii by the eruption of Vesuvius in 79 AD, and was covered by a layer of mud, lava and ashes that created over time, a layer of tuff in some areas more than 20 meters deep. Herculaneum is the only example in the world of an ancient city which remained intact with its wooden structures of the houses and furnishings of daily use. End of the tour and transfer back to your hotel.
Day 6 – From Naples to Florence
After breakfast and check out from your hotel, meet your private English speaking driver and together you will reach Naples railway station. Here, you will take your fast train to Florence. Upon arrival in Florence, meet your private English speaking driver and have a direct transfer to your hotel: Hotel Antica Torre di Via Tornabuoni 4****. We will book 1 Double Deluxe Room. Check in at the hotel and time to rest. The Antica Torre di Via Tornabuoni 1 is a historic residence located in the heart of Florence, a short distance from the city's famous attractions, the places of interest and the luxury shopping streets. The hotel is housed in a tower-house built in the mid-12th century. Thanks to attentive restoration, it is an exclusive location with 24 rooms, decorated in Renaissance or classic style with frescoes, exquisite fabrics and furniture, canopy beds, soft tones finishings as well as opulent bathrooms. Almost all the rooms enjoy an enchanting view of the Arno River. Breakfast is served on fine Richard Ginori porcelain at the Salotto Sonoro, a refined ambience featuring panelings. The hotel also features panoramic terraces where guests can sample select cocktails, good wines and culinary delights. You will enjoy this unique view of Florence: The dome of Santa Maria del Fiore, the hills of Fiesole and Settignano, the Arno River, the Santa Trinita Bridge and Via Maggio, the church of San Miniato a Monte, Forte Belvedere designed by Buontalenti, the hill of Bellosguardo, Palazzo Vecchio, the bell tower of Santa Trinita: wherever you turn, Florence will show you all its splendor.
Day 7 – Florence: Walking Tour with Food tour & Accademia Gallery
Breakfast at your hotel. Then meet your private English speaking guide in the lobby and start your walking tour of Florence. You will have the opportunity to observe close up the priceless Duomo with the dome built by Brunelleschi, the largest brick dome in the world, stretching protectively over the Florentine Cathedral. You will also see its splendid bell tower: the famous Campanile of Giotto. Next stop will be the political center of the city that will open its doors to us, offering you the chance to visit the Palazzo della Signoria, seat of the secularists' power and once home to the Medici ruling family, later called Palazzo Vecchio, today seat of the municipality, also admire the oldest "piazza" (square) in Florence, Piazza della Repubblica, surrounded today, by historic cultural cafès, where young intellectual Florentines like to gather. Built on top of the Ancient Roman Forum. Your tour will lead you to the nearby San Lorenzo Market, where you will have a taste of Tuscany’s “green gold”, its renowned olive oil, as well as a variety of cheeses, salami and prosciutto, truffle sauces and balsamic vinegar. You will have also a wine tasting where you can enjoy some of the region’s finest wines. Still not full yet? Next stop will be at a local “fiaschetteria” where you will have a tasting of some of the city’s traditional recipes. The tour will end in grand style with one of the finest gelato (ice cream) parlors of the city where you can pick your favorite flavor made with genuine and fresh products. After this culinary experience, you will discover the Accademia Gallery Museum where the most symbolic work of Michelangelo is housed: Il David, an expression of beauty and physical perfection. It also has other sculptures by Michelangelo and a collection of Renaissance paintings: you will admire also the “Il Ratto delle Sabine” by Giambologna (The Rape of the Sabine Women), as well as “La Madonna ed il Bambino” (Madonna and Child) and “la Madonna del Mare” (Madonna of the Sea) by Botticelli. End of the tour and free afternoon at leisure.
Day 8 – Florence: Free Day
Breakfast at the hotel and a free day to relax, go shopping or explore the city on your own.
Day 9 – Florence to Cortona
After breakfast and check out, you will be greeted by your private English speaking driver who will transfer you directly to your hotel in Cortona: Cortona Resort and Spa 4****L. We will book 1 Double Comfort Room. Check in and rest of the day at leisure. The Cortona Resort and Spa is a village of unique charm, elegant venues dominated by an eighteenth-century villa which together with features Tuscan-style buildings are part of a secular park of over 30,000 square meters with formal gardens that weave tracks, evocative spaces and an ancient redwood overlooking the swimming pool and the solarium. The resort, with its elegantly furnished rooms, enjoys the best location being just over a mile from the center of the beautiful Etruscan town.
Day 10 – Cortona: Siena Tour
After breakfast at your hotel, meet your private English speaking driver and discover the Tuscan town of Siena. Upon arrival in Siena, you will meet your private English speaking guide who will accompany you for a pleasant walking tour of the town. You will discover the Magnificent Piazza del Campo where twice a year (2 July and 16 August) a unique historical event takes place, that every citizen of Siena looks forward to: the Palio di Siena. You will learn about the history of the Contrade (ancient Sienese name for 17 different neighborhoods within the town) and visit the famous Cathedral of Siena, that houses some of the most important monuments of the European artistic panorama. During your tour, you will also discover the “gastronomic” Siena with a tasting of the locally produced “Panforte of Siena” and of “Ricciarelli biscuits”. At the end of the tour, free time for lunch at leisure. Afterwards, your driver will accompany you back to your hotel. Rest of the day at leisure.
Day 11 – Cortona: Free Day
Breakfast at the hotel and free day to relax, to go shopping or explore the city on your own.
Day 12 – Tuscany to Venice
After breakfast and check out, meet your private English speaking driver who will chauffer you to Florence railway station. Here, you will get your fast train to Venice. Upon arrival at Venice railway station, you will meet your private English speaking assistant who will greet you and together, you will reach your private water taxi waiting for you outside the railway station, for a direct transfer to your centrally located hotel: Papadopoli Hotel 4**** (directly booked by you) Check in and free time at leisure. The 4-star Papadopoli Venezia is in the heart of Santa Croce district, a 2-minute walk from Piazzale Roma bus terminal and 300 meters from Santa Lucia train station. 96 rooms and suites with furnishings reflecting the elegance and splendor of the 18th century, and views of the Tolentini Canal and Papadopoli Gardens. There is a restaurant at the heart of our enchanting winter garden. The hotel is surrounded by art, history and culture: the Scuola Grande di San Rocco, with frescos by Tintoretto, the church of Santa Maria dei Frari with Titian's Assumption of the Virgin and the Scuola Grande dei Carmini containing works by Tiepolo. Enjoy the picturesque views that start from the Giardini Papadopoli and continue along the Grand Canal.
Day 13 – Venice: Walking Tour & Private Gondola Ride
After breakfast at your hotel, meet your private English-speaking guide and begin the perfect tour for those who want to discover the history of Venice starting from the most important site of the city: Saint Mark’s Square. Together with your guide, you will explore a wealth of hidden sights not normally granted to visitors of this spectacular city. Allow yourselves to be soothed by the magical imperfection of the Venetian streets and cast under the spell of its evocative atmosphere. You will visit also St. Mark's Basilica, and the Piazza, (the Square) and its main monuments: Basilica (inside), Doge’s Palace (outside), Bridge of Sighs, Clock Tower and the beautiful Bell Tower. After your tour, you will be ready to sample "i cicchetti" (classic Venetian appetizers) made with the best ingredients found in the city accompanied by some well-known wines. A gastronomic and historical tour of this wonderful ancient city on the lagoon, perfect for those who want their journey to be a unique and unforgettable experience. At the end of your tour, we will reserve for you a private gondola ride. The tour will start at Bacino Orseolo just behind Saint Mark’s Square. Together with your gondolier, you will follow smaller but unbelievably beautiful secondary canals such as Rio dei Barcaioli where the Mozart’s home is located, and Rio dell’Ovo to reach the Grand Canal. From here, you will enjoy the spectacular view of the Rialto Bridge from the water, and to your left imposing palazzi such as Ca’ Farsetti, seat of the municipal government, and Palazzo Grimani, the largest building overlooking the Grand Canal and which now hosts the Court of Appeals. The tour continues down Rio San Luca where it passes Palazzo Manin, residence of the last doge of Venice, Ludovico Manin, and today the Bank of Italy’s Regional headquarters building. Rest of the day at leisure.
Day 14 – Venice: Murano & Burano
After breakfast at your hotel, meet your private English-speaking assistant and water chauffeur for an exciting 4-hour boat excursion to Murano and Burano. As a guardian of the lagoon’s age-old traditions and manufacturing heritage, Murano plays an essential part in your Venice experience. Don’t miss the chance to discover the folklore, customs and secrets handed down from generation to generation of this treasure island and plunge into its timeless, magical atmosphere. This memorable excursion begins as you dock at the world-famous Murano island which boasts a long and still-thriving tradition dating back to 1291, when glass artisans moved their kilns from the old city center for fear of fires. You will have the unique opportunity to visit a glass factory for an exclusive presentation of glass making. This is your chance to observe the skill of the ‘maestri’ artisans as they forge objects of art in front of your eyes with melting hot glass employing ancient secret techniques that have been passed down through generations. In Burano, soon after, you can see all the fishermen's houses painted in pretty pastel colors and examine their famous hand-made laces as you visit one of the lace shops on the island. End of the tour, rest of the day at leisure.
Day 15 – Venice to Cortina d’Ampezzo
After breakfast and check out, you will be met at the hotel by your private English speaking assistant and water chauffeur, who will escort you to Piazzale Roma, where you will be greeted by your private driver for your transfer to your hotel in Cortina d’Ampezzo, on the Dolomites: Hotel Bellevue Suites & Spa 4****. We will book 1 double classic room. Check in and rest of the day at leisure. Overnight in Cortina d’Ampezzo. The Hotel Bellevue Suites & SPA in Cortina d’Ampezzo is a historic hotel situated in the heart of the Queen of the Dolomites close to the pedestrian area of Corso Italia. This important 4 star hotel has 66 rooms 46 of them are Apartments Suite, all decorated in the typical Cortina d’Ampezzo style and finished with warm period parquet flooring and precious panelling. The hotel provides all sorts of comforts, including a Spa and a Fitness room. The excellent combination of simple but flavoured ingredients and the hosting of guests are the strongest points of the Restaurant, in perfect harmony with the style of the Bellevue Suites & SPA.
Day 16 – Cortina D’Ampezzo: Free Day
Breakfast at your hotel and free day at leisure.
Day 17 – Cortina D’Ampezzo: Free Day
Breakfast at your hotel and free day at leisure.
Day 18 – Cortina D’Ampezzo: Free Day
Breakfast at your hotel and free day at leisure.
Breakfast and check out from the hotel. Then, meet your private English speaking driver who will drive you to your hotel in Milan: Hotel Spadari al Duomo 4****. We will book: 1 Double Deluxe Room. Check in and the rest of the day at leisure. First of all,we offer the best possible hospitality, in which people are the most important thing. We pay close attention to detail and seek the best products for our guests, from our breakfast to our line of organic bathroom amenities. Secondly, we share what we like with our guests, from our personal design style to our contemporary art to the short stories that you will find in your room every evening. Lastly, we strive to continuously improve our hotel with better comfort, innovative services and reduced impact on the environment. Our idea of a hotel is a place where you can feel good right in the heart of Milan. Ideal location in the center of Milan.
Day 20 – Milan: Walking tour
After breakfast at the hotel, meet your private English speaking guide in the hotel lobby for your half day tour. You will enjoy a private guided tour of the city, including the famous Teatro alla Scala (from outside) and the Duomo with its golden Madonnina. Milan has always been a rich and important city. It offers a great assortment of churches, buildings, monuments and art. The most important church is the Cathedral, the Duomo, which is the third largest church in the world. Milan has many historic palazzos like the Royal Palace that you will admire on the south side of Piazza Duomo. After the tour, you will be free to enjoy your afternoon at leisure, perhaps doing some shopping in the beautiful city center boutiques. Overnight in Milan.
Day 21 – Milan to Rome and Departure
After breakfast and check out from the hotel, you will meet your private English speaking driver who will drive you to Milan railway station. From there you will get your fast train to Rome. Once in Rome, you will be met by your English speaking driver who will take you to Fiumicino airport for your departure.