Best of Italy

Italy

Regional Journey

Best of Italy (Summer 2018)

Duration: 12 days Visiting: Italy

Prices from {{lowPrice}}

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  • Overview
  • Itinerary
  • Highlights
  • Optional experiences
  • Accommodation
  • Reviews
  • Dates & prices

A showcase of Italy’s grandest attractions, including saintly Assisi, dramatic Venice, Renaissance Florence and the coastal splendors of Capri.

  1. Day 1

    Your Journey Begins

    Board your overnight flight to Europe (Please ask about our great deals).

  2. Day 2

    Rome the Eternal City.

    Welcome to Rome, a glorious city filled with classic antiquities, medieval buildings, Renaissance palaces and Baroque churches. Transfers depart from Rome's Fiumicino Leonardo da Vinci Airport for the your hotel at 09:30, 12:30 and 15:30. Join your Travel Director at 17:30 for a uniquely Roman Welcome Dinner at a local restaurant.

  3. Day 3

    VIP Vatican and Rome with a Local.

    The day is devoted to the Eternal City. Join a Local Expert for an in-depth visit to the Vatican Museums, full of priceless art treasures collected by the Popes. Insight has arranged special VIP entry to avoid the crowds and behind-the-scenes access to the Bramante Staircase, a marvel of Renaissance architecture normally off-limits to visitors. Visit the Sistine Chapel where the Popes are elected to admire Michelangelo’s famous ceiling. Continue to St. Peter’s Basilica, to wonder at another of his works, the emotive ‘Pietà,’ and stand beneath the dome completed after his death. There’s free time to do as the Romans do, 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, and enjoy free time in Piazza Navona.

  4. Day 4

    Renaissance Florence.

    Travel north through glorious, peaceful Tuscan landscapes. Meet your Local Expert for a guided visit through the house of the Italian Renaissance diplomat and writer, Niccolo Machiavelli, with a special opening of his private office where he wrote 'The Prince.' Visit the Italian garden for views of Florence's iconic domed cathedral and see the historic cellar which connects to one of the oldest restaurants in Italy by a secret underground tunnel. Taste wines made from the vineyards surrounding the home, accompanied by delicious samples of local Tuscan fare. Continue on to Renaissance Florence.

  5. Day 5

    Florence Sightseeing.

    Join an art historian for a walking orientation of the historic city centre. A highlight is the visit to the Accademia Gallery to study Michelangelo's monumental statue, David. Continue to the multi-coloured marble cathedral to admire Giotto's bell tower and Gates of Paradise, recreated in all their glory. Visit the Piazza della Signoria, still the political heart of Florence, and explore the area around Santa Croce Basilica, famous for the quality of its luxury goods. After a demonstration of leather-work, there's free time to shop or venture on your own. In the evening, don't miss the chance to sample the fine Florentine cuisine of tasty starters and rich pastas accompanied by Chianti wine.

  6. Day 6

    Pisa to Venice, the Queen of the Adriatic.

    In the morning, journey to the coastal town of Pisa to see the famous Leaning Tower in the Square of Miracles as well as the baptistery, with its intricately detailed marble facade, and the colonnaded bell tower lurching behind the cathedral. Then relax and enjoy the scenery as you cross the spectacular Apennine Mountains, through the Emilia-Romagna region - one of Europe's most intensely farmed fertile plains. Continue through the marshes of the Venetian Lagoon before crossing the causeway into the floating city of Venice.

  7. Day 7 - Relaxed Start

    Venice and the Magic of La Serenissima.

    (Relaxed Start) In the morning your private launch takes you past Palladian churches and 13th century palaces to St. Mark's Square. The first sight is the pink marble of the Doge's Palace, connected to the prisons by the Bridge of Sighs. It was from here that Casanova made his daring escape. Turn the corner, and the gilded regalia of St. Mark's Basilica comes into view. A visit to an arts centre on Giudecca Island will allow you to admire the age-old skill of glassblowing. Later, board a traditional gondola for a serenade along the romantic canals.

  8. Day 8 - Relaxed Start

    Into the Hills of Umbria to Assisi.

    Leave Venice and journey to peaceful Assisi, one of Italy's most beautiful mountain towns. In the valley, see the Church of St. Mary of the Angels, much venerated as the place of St. Francis' death, then continue up Mount Subasio to the upper town. With your Local Expert, step inside the huge Basilica of St. Francis, built in the 13th century, where the frescoes by Giotto heralded a new era in Italian art.

  9. Day 9 - Relaxed Start

    Sorrento on the coast.

    Travel south passing Cassino, the scene of a fierce battle during World War II. Follow the spectacular clifftop road to the picturesque resort of Sorrento, overlooking the Bay of Naples to Mount Vesuvious. After checking in to your hotel, spend the rest of the day at your leisure.

  10. Day 10

    Capri, the Isle of Dreams.

    In the morning, cruise to the Isle of Capri. Under the Mediterranean sun, take a funicular ride up to Capri town where your Local Expert will take you around the narrow alleyways to browse exclusive boutiques and enjoy views over the Tyrrhenian Sea. Perhaps join an optional cruise around Capri? Descend to the port in one of the island's iconic open-top taxis and return to Sorrento for some time to relax. In the evening, join your fellow travellers for a memorable Celebration Dinner of delicious Italian cuisine and wine.

  11. Day 11

    Pompeii, frozen in time and onto Rome

    Guests ending their journey today will arrive at Naples airport at 06:00 or 08:00 depending on their flight times. Otherwise, continue to Pompeii, the opulent Roman town which was preserved by layers of ash from the disastrous eruption of Mount Vesuvius in A.D. 79. A walk with your Local Expert through the cobbled streets and extensive excavations reveals the daily life of ancient Roman civilisation. Visit the Forum and peer into shops and patrician villas, decorated with colourful wall paintings. Then continue north as you travel to your hotel in Rome.

  12. Day 12

    Arrivederci Rome.

    Departure transfers arrive at Rome's Fiumicino Leonardo da Vinci Airport at approximately 07:00 and 09:30.

Highlights

 

INSIGHT EXPERIENCES

  • Rome: Sightsee the local way with a leisurely passeggiata through the backstreets, where a friend in Rome will explain how modern life takes place around ancient treasures.
  • Vatican City: Gain VIP fast-track entrance into the Vatican Museums and enjoy a special private viewing of the Bramante Staircase before admiring the genius of Michelangelo's painted ceiling in the Sistine Chapel.
  • Florence: Gain a fascinating insight into the work of Michelangelo’s masterpiece, David, with a Renaissance art expert during your visit to the Accademia Museum.
  • Venice: Witness the ancient skill of glassblowing while watching artisans create delicate works of art.
  • Pompeii: Walk with a Local Expert through the cobbled streets of this ill-fated town, frozen in time since the 1st century.

TOP RATED HIGHLIGHTS

  • Rome: Visit St. Peter's Basilica and see the mighty Colosseum and Roman Forum. You will also see other medieval buildings, including Renaissance palaces and Baroque churches, scattered throughout the city.
  • Florence: Enjoy panoramic views over of the city and see the Florence Cathedral. During your guided walking orientation, see the bell tower, Gates of Paradise on the baptistery and visit Piazza della Signoria.
  • Florence: Witness a leather-work demonstration and visit the area around Piazza Santa Croce, famous for the quality of its luxury goods.
  • Pisa: See the famous gravity-defying Leaning Tower in the Square of Miracles, along with the 11th century cathedral and beautifully decorated baptistery.
  • 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: Enjoy a traditional gondola serenade along the romantic canals.
  • Assisi: See the Church of St. Mary of the Angels.
  • Assisi: Find out why the Basilica of St. Francis is considered one of the crowning achievements of medieval Europe with a Local Expert.
  • Isle of Capri: Cruise to this famous isle to meet your Local Expert. In unique style, ascend by open-top taxi and return to the port by funicular.

AUTHENTIC DINING

  • Tuscany: Taste locally-made wines and sample delicious Tuscan snacks in the underground cellar of Machiavelli's home. Visit the Italian gardens and be privy to a private opening of the office where he wrote 'The Prince.'
  • Sorrento: Enjoy a glorious Celebration Dinner of fresh, rustic dishes served with local wine.
  • Included Quality Dining: 10 Buffet Breakfasts (BB), 1 Afternoon Tea (AT) and 5 Dinners with Wine (DW) all with tea or coffee.

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.

Optional experiences

Most Insight trips already include a host of bonus highlights and comprehensive sightseeing. There may also be an exciting array of Optional Experiences which will turn an already amazing experience into the trip of a lifetime! These are entirely optional and can be booked through your Travel Director/Local Representative at the commencement of your trips. Please note, many Optional Experiences are operated by independent third party suppliers, not Insight Vacations. The Optionals and pricing listed here are a guideline only and subject to change.

Rome By Night - Illuminations Drive

Join your Tour Director for a classic journey through one of the most fascinating cities in the world. Rome by night is a vision with its ancient monuments, classical buildings, palaces and churches beautifully illuminated against the evening sky. A wonderful introduction to the Eternal City!

Adult Price: EUR 19.00

Code: ROM0001

Guided Visit To Colosseum & Roman Forum

With our local expert, We'll explore the glorious history of the Roman Empire. Enjoying priority reserved entrance ahead of the crowds, we'll hear tales of deadly gladiatorial combat inside the mighty Colosseum. Then, we'll walk in the footsteps of Roman soldiers and gaze over the incredible ruins of the forum, once the centre of political, religious and social life, while hearing tales of the mighty Roman Empire. Truly an incredible vision as history comes alive! n.b. On the first Sunday of the month, the price of this optional experience will be reduced. Please note: This optional is subject to availability

Adult Price: EUR 54.00

Code: ROM0003

Rome Of The Ancient Christians

Outside the ancient Roman city walls we visit the early Christian Catacombs, underground cemetries carved out of soft Tufa Stone. Nearby we also visit one of the major basilicas of Rome, St Pauls Outside the Walls. The burial place of St Paul the Apostle, famous for its Byzantine Mosaics. On some departures the Christian Catacombs are offered with a visit to St Peter in Chains to view the magnificent 'Moses' sculpture by Michelangelo, (instead of St Pauls).

Adult Price: EUR 38.00

Code: ROM0006

Delights of Rome with Dinner

Spend an evening getting to know Rome. We’ll take you via coach where you’ll have the chance to see some of the city’s much-loved sights. Afterwards, you’ll enjoy a delicious light dinner of Italian specialities, alongside local music and drinks.

Adult Price: EUR 49.00

Code: ROM0017

San Gimignano Excursion

A wonderful excursion to Tuscany's most famous hill-top town! Visit San Gimignano, considered a medieval Manhattan, due to its towers which dominate the skyline. Soak up the unique atmosphere of this ancient gem which has remained intact since the 14th century and today is listed as a UNESCO World Heritage site.

Adult Price: EUR 36.00

Code: FLO0002

Tuscan Dinner & Cooking Demonstration

Florence and Tuscany are renowned for their rich gastronomic heritage. Tonight we'll travel into the hills near Florence to the northernmost part of the Chianti, where a local chef will introduce you to the dishes that make Tuscan cuisine famous throughout the world. This wonderful cooking demonstration, with superb food and wine, will provide warm and genuine Tuscan hospitality.

Adult Price: EUR 69.00

Code: FLO0003

Dinner In The Tuscan Hills

A fabulous dinner of Tuscan specialities awaits you. We drive into the hills surrounding Florence for a delicious typical Florentine meal complete with Chianti wine, music and lots of fun! An evening to remember. Viva Italia!

Adult Price: EUR 65.00

Code: FLO0005

Magical Venice

Venice can be Europe's most romantic city in the evening, offering dramatic landscapes with buildings that dazzle as the sun sets and the lights go on. Sit back and take it all in as private water taxis whisk you to the centre of it all, Piazza San Marco, where we have seats reserved outside a famous Venetian cafe, in front of a live orchestra and in view of those illuminated St Mark's sights. Our private water taxis will also take us the length of the Grand Canal, under the Rialto Bridge and back to our hotel, having seen Venice at its most magical.

Adult Price: EUR 55.00

Code: VEN0001

Hidden Venice

To only experience Venice's big set pieces -- St Mark's Square; the Rialto; the Grand Canal -- is to miss out on a hidden world full of surprises! Join a Local Expert for a fascinating walk through some of the lesser known quarters of Venice. The back lanes and ‘campi’, small squares, where tourists seldom tread are full of history and great places to sample local life.

Adult Price: EUR 34.00

Code: VEN0002

Burano Excursion & Meal

Leave the hustle of St Mark's Square behind on a delightful private cruise around the islands of the Venetian lagoon. Alight at the island of Burano, a photographer's paradise, famous for its candy coloured houses, artisan lace makers and leaning bell tower that would give Pisa a good run for its money. Enjoy a superb meal sampling the local specialities with wine included. An excursion not to be missed!

Adult Price: 71.00

Code: VEN0003

Sorrento Evening

A chance to enjoy a delicious dinner of local specialities. We arrive at one of the area's unique local restaurants for an incredible dining experience featuring some of the famous dishes of this region!

Adult Price: EUR 61.00

Code: SOR0002

Amalfi Coast Drive & Positano Visit

Drive along the clear blue waters and picturesque resorts of the Amalfi Coast, arguably the most glamorous and scenic stretch of coast in Europe. Minibuses wind their way down serpentine roads to the exclusive artists' paradise of Positano, clinging to the cliff face, as if about to cascade into the turquoise waters below. Spend time exploring the elegant shops, watching the artists at work, or enjoying an 'aperitivo' in a beach side cafe.

Adult Price: EUR 44.00

Code: SOR0004

Island Tour of Capri

Experience the spectacular cliffs and famous turquoise waters of Capri during a relaxing cruise to the most beautiful part of the island, the southern side. View the beautiful grottoes and unique coastline before ascending to Capri town. This optional experience is weather dependent and may be replaced by a minibus tour of the Island with a visit to Anacapri and the Villa San Michele.

Adult Price: EUR 42.00

Code: SOR0001

Accommodation

 

Hotel Romanico Palace or Hotel dei Borgia Rome

Rome (Contemporary) - Italy

Hotel Romanico Palace: Located in the heart of Rome, the luxurious Hotel Romanico Palace offers easy access to all the historical sites of the Eternal City.
Hotel dei Borgia: This elegant hotel is located in in one of the most central positions in Rome, close to all the key attractions.

Athenaeum Personal Hotel or Hotel Londra Florence

Florence (Contemporary) - Italy

Athenaeum Personal Hotel: A modern hotel which is fantastically-located for Florence’s highlights, especially the David.
Hotel Londra: An elegant hotel situated right in the heart of Florence.

B4 Bellini Venezia Venice

Venice (Traditional) - Italy

Hotel Giotto Assisi

Assisi (Historic) - Italy

Hotel Giotto Assisi is located in the centre of the medieval village of Assisi with beautiful views over the Umbrian countryside. Guest rooms are decorated in local Umbrian style.

Michelangelo Hotel or Grand Hotel Cesare Augusto Sorrento

Sorrento (Traditional) - Italy

Michelangelo Hotel: A centrally-located hotel developed around a 7th century tower.

Hotel Massimo dAzeglio or Hotel dei Borgia Rome

Rome (Contemporary) - Italy

Hotel dei Borgia: This elegant hotel is located in in one of the most central positions in Rome, close to all the key attractions.
Hotel Massimo d’Azeglio: This 19th century hotel contains many original paintings from the 1860s.

Guest Reviews & Experiences

Our guests rate us 4.5 out of 5 based on
10664 independent user reviews received during the past year.

  • 16 July, 2018

    TRIP:
    SERVICE:

    Trip: The days spent in each location were perfect.

    Service: Director and driver worked well together and coordinated all activities without any problem.

  • 15 July, 2018

    TRIP:
    SERVICE:

    Trip: I though the locations we got to go to where great. The only things I would say is that there where a few optional experience that should have been in the itinerary already and that we should not have to pay for it. Example would be the Colosseum.

    Service: Caroline was always there to answer any questions we had before and after the trip. No

  • 15 July, 2018

    TRIP:
    SERVICE:

    Trip: "Best of Italy" - No better way to describe it. A fantastic tour which we would recommend to anyone.

    Service: Our holiday with Insight Vacations was excellent in every respect. From the moment we first met our Tour Director to the final day when we said goodbye, our every need was catered for. We were exceptionally fortunate to have travelled with an excellent group of people, some of whom have become good friends. The accommodation and optional components of the tour were of a very high standard. Our Tour Director was fantastic as was our coach driver. We would definitely recommend Insight Vacations to our friends.

  • 15 July, 2018

    TRIP:
    SERVICE:

    Trip: Truly delivered on all the highlights of Italy

    Service: Top notch!

  • 15 July, 2018

    TRIP:
    SERVICE:

    Trip: Locations were everything we wanted to see. The historical sites were tremendous

    Service: Yes. Have already recommended to others. Would like to visit other countries Caroline Pugsley was a great tour guide. Offered us many great thoughts and made us feel like a family

  • 15 July, 2018

    TRIP:
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    Trip: The sites were amazing. Never a dull moment.

    Service: I have already recommended the Best of Italy tour. Best experience.

  • 13 July, 2018

    TRIP:
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    Trip: We saw a lot more than we had ever expected

    Service: Sara Brocki was wonderful. We've talked about visiting Italy for years. Sara made the trip a once in a lifetime experience. We would definitely use Insight again

  • 13 July, 2018

    TRIP:
    SERVICE:

    Trip: Pace was good & experienced many different regions Italy. Optional excursions were excellent.

    Service: Excellent customer service provided by tour director who was very organized,attentive knowledgeable available & very hard working. She certainly mDe our trip pleasant & memorable one. Certsinly will recommend to othrrs.

  • 13 July, 2018

    TRIP:
    SERVICE:

    Trip: I saw a lot of Italy and was happy with what I saw and did. I had seen some of it in the previous tour so didn't do all of the itinerary offered. Pity it was so crowded but then it was the high season.

    Service: Hotel accommodation good, guide excellent with thorough knowledge of all areas we went to. I was disappointed that this tour was advertised as a small group but in fact it was 33 people(30 Americans and Canadians). I was looking for a smaller group as I had just come off another tour of 12 people which was great as I got to know everybody. Being a larger group, I didn't know them all.

  • 12 July, 2018

    TRIP:
    SERVICE:

    Trip: Quite a hectic schedule once you included the optional extras.

    Service: Tour director was very organised & efficient & Yes we would book with you again.

  • 12 July, 2018

    TRIP:
    SERVICE:

    Trip: Truly visited the 'Best' places of Italy.

    Service: Second trip with Insight. I was not disappointed!

  • 11 July, 2018

    TRIP:
    SERVICE:

    Trip: Great locations, great information, awesome getting through lines and not waiting, beautiful scenery!

    Service: Highly recommend. Awesome tour guide!

*Trip prices and dates are correct at the time of the website going live, however are subject to confirmation at the time of booking. Prices displayed reflect available discounted rates such Early Payment Discount or Last Minute Deals (discounts are not combinable). Discounts may be withdrawn at anytime, book early to confirm space. All trip information is correct at time of trips going live, however is subject to change, please confirm all details at time of booking. For full terms and conditions, please refer to our Booking Conditions page.
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