Headsets throughout the daySightseeing: Visits to Orvieto, Siena, San Gimignano, Greve in Chianti with wine tasting, Pisa, Venice, Assisi
Scenic Highlights: Chianti Valley
Local Guides for city sightseeing in Rome, Florence. Services of a professional Tour Director while touring
- December 21 Departure - Christmas lunch in Florence.
Day 1Arrive in Rome, Italy
Check into your hotel. The rest of the day is free for you to explore this ancient capital. This evening, meet your Tour Director and fellow travelers.
The ˝Eternal City,“Rome is a city steeped in history, vibrantly alive and exciting, and absolutely unique! Included sightseeing with a Local Guide starts in St. Peter’s Square, followed by a visit to the Roman Forum and the mighty Colosseum. (B)
Journey northwest to the charmingly located city of Orvieto in the Umbria region to visit its black basalt and yellow limestone cathedral, an excellent example of Italian Gothic architecture. By early evening you’ll be in Siena with time to visit this jewel of Tuscany. Sit in one of the cafés surrounding the Campo and admire one of Italy’s most unique squares, famed the world over for its Palio horse race. (B)
Day 4Siena–San Gimignano–Greve–Montecatini
Drive this morning to San Gimignano, one of Tuscany’s greatest attractions. Its medieval squares, town walls, streets, alleyways, and 14 towers make it unique. Next, into the very heart of the Chianti vineyards; watch out for names such as Castellina in Chianti, Badia, Gaiole, and Brolio, where classical Chianti wines are produced. Stop in Greve for some wine tasting at a local wine producer. Arrive in Montecatini in time to join the outing for an optional Tuscan dinner. (B)
Day 5Montecatini–Excursion to Florence
This Renaissance gem and city of the Medicis will keep you enthralled the entire day. Traffic is banned in part of the historic center so visitors can wander at leisure and admire the city’s timeless beauty in relative peace and quiet. Don’t miss out on the included walking tour with a Local Guide, which features most of the city highlights. You will see Piazza Santa Croce; beautiful Piazza Signoria; Palazzo Vecchio and its courtyard; Loggia dei Lanzi; and, to top it all, Piazza del Duomo and its cathedral with the Giotto Campanile, and the magnificent East Door of the Baptistry, known as the “Gate of Paradise.” (B,D)
Day 6Montecatini–Pisa–Venice Area
This morning, drive to Pisa for a visit to its Square of Miracles and the amazing Leaning Tower, 180 feet high and no less than 16 feet out of the perpendicular. Later, head across the wooded Apennine Hills into the farmlands of the Po Valley for two overnights in the Venice area. (B)
Day 7Venice Area
Venice is more like a marvelous film set than a real live city, with its criss-crossing canals, gondolas and water buses, arched bridges, palaces, and little quiet piazzas. The included orientation starts with a boat ride and is followed by time at leisure and a chance to watch Venetian glassblowers fashion their delicate objects as they did centuries ago. Don’t miss out on the optional gondola trip, gliding along the picturesque canals with a local troubadour to serenade you. (B,D)
Day 8Venice Area–Assisi–Rome
An interesting drive southward, cutting across the Po Delta, then crossing the Apennines. Stop in Assisi, where St. Francis was born in 1182. Visit the world-famous basilica with its beautiful frescoes by Giotto, then head for Rome. (B)
Your vacation ends with breakfast this morning. (B)
Transportation: Scheduled transatlantic flights and airport transfers in Rome if Cosmos issues the air tickets. Touring by private first-class air-conditioned motorcoach. Canal transfer boat in Venice
Buffet breakfasts; 2 dinners
With Cosmos, there’s no better way to get to know your destination than through the eyes of your Tour Director. Averaging over a decade... we’d like you to meet a Tour Director, who is representative of the type of expert that will be with you on your vacation.
Years of Experience: 11 years
Sharing some of the most enchanting wonders of my home country with new people is always fulfilling. I love introducing travelers to the charm of the "Eternal City," the art and architecture of Florence, the romantic magnetism of Venice, and the mouthwatering food and wines. I enjoy every second of our time together-it's hard to say goodbye!