Spiritual Highlights of Italy - Faith Based Travel (5300)

9 Day Tour from Rome to Rome

2017 Tour Details View 2016 Tour Details »

Start your vacation in Rome, where you meet your Tour Director and fellow travelers, and enjoy a welcome dinner at your hotel. Next morning, attend the Papal Audience (subject to availability). Guided sightseeing takes you to St. Paul Outside the Walls, the burial place of St. Paul the Apostle, followed by the basilica of St. John Lateran, and the papal sanctuary of the Scala Santa (Holy Stairs), transported from Jerusalem to Rome around 326 AD by St. Helena, Emperor Constantine’s mother. Attend Mass at the impressive basilica of St. Mary Major. Guided sightseeing also includes visits to St. Peter’s Square and Basilica, plus the iconic Colosseum and Roman Forum. An optional visit to the Vatican Museums and Sistine Chapel is available. Next, travel south, with stops in Monte Cassino to visit the abbey, and Pietrelcina, birthplace of Padre Pio. Arrive at San Giovanni Rotondo for a 2-night stay. After attending Mass at the Santa Maria delle Grazie (Old Church), visit the Friary of Padre Pio, including his tomb, cell, confessional, and the Padre Pio Pilgrimage Church (New Church). Then, visit the nearby shrine of Monte Sant’Angelo, famous for apparitions of St. Michael the Archangel. Continue to Assisi, home of mystical St. Francis. Attend early morning Mass at St. Francis Basilica, then enjoy guided visits of the Upper and Lower Basilicas of St. Francis, and the Basilica of St. Clare. Also visit the Basilica of Santa Maria degli Angeli and see the Cappella del Transito, where the saint died in 1226. Travel to Cascia for a visit of the sanctuary and basilica that houses the tomb of St. Rita, and also the Minor Basilica, home of the Eucharistic Miracle. Return to Rome for a farewell dinner and overnight.

 Destinations & Sightseeing

Headsets throughout the tour

Inside visits and special features:
Shown in UPPERCASE in the tour description including admission charges where applicable.

Visits to Monte Cassino, Pietrelcina, San Giovanni Rotondo, Monte Sant'Angelo, Lanciano, Loreto, Cascia

Scenic Highlights:
Umbria and Puglia

Mass/Religious Service:
Rome, San Giovanni Rotondo, Lanciano, Assisi

Departure September 20 - St. Padre Pio Feast Day in San Giovanni Rotondo (September 23)
Departure September 27 - St. Francis of Assisi Feast Day in Assisi (October 4)
Departure June 28 - Feast Day of Saints Peter & Paul (June 29) in Rome

The following UNESCO World Heritage Sites can be seen or visited on this vacation:

  • Historic Centre of Florence
  • Enjoying extraterritorial rights and San Paolo fuori le Mura
  • Enjoying extraterritorial rights and San Paolo fuori le Mura


Scheduled transatlantic flights and airport transfers in Rome if Cosmos issues the air tickets. Touring by private first-class air-conditioned motorcoach.


 Meals & Itinerary

Buffet breakfasts daily; 5 dinners


Inside visits and special features are shown in UPPERCASE in the tour description.

Day 1 Arrive in Rome, Italy

Welcome to Italy! Check into your hotel, then the rest of the day is free to explore this ancient capital. This afternoon, meet your Tour Director and fellow travelers; later this evening, a welcome dinner at your hotel awaits you.


Day 2 Rome

Attend the PAPAL AUDIENCE this morning (subject to availability). Later, join your Local Guide for the included visit to ST. PAUL OUTSIDE THE WALLS, the burial place of St. Paul the Apostle. Also visit ST. JOHN LATERAN, built by Constantine the Great in the 4th century and the first of the four major churches constructed in Rome. Next, visit the papal sanctuary of the SCALA SANTA (Holy Stairs), transported from Jerusalem to Rome around 326 AD by St. Helena, Emperor Constantine’s mother. These 28 marble steps are traditionally ascended in a kneeling position with a prayer recital dedicated to Jesus Christ. Then, visit the impressive ST. MARY MAJOR and attend Mass.


Day 3 Rome

Rome, the “Eternal City,” is a city steeped in history, vibrantly alive and exciting, and absolutely unique! Included sightseeing with a Local Guide starts with St. Peter’s Square and BASILICA, followed by the iconic COLOSSEUM and ROMAN FORUM. An optional visit to the Vatican Museums and Sistine Chapel is available.


Day 4 Rome–Monte Cassino–Pietrelcina–San Giovanni Rotondo

Deeper into the south today, making a first stop in Monte Cassino to see the monastery and visit the ABBEY perched high above the valley. The monastery was the motherhouse of the Benedictines, founded in 529 AD and destroyed four times over the past centuries. The last time it was laid to ruin was in 1944 during the great Battle of Monte Cassino. Then, stop in the quaint town of Pietrelcina, birthplace of Padre Pio, before heading towards Italy’s eastern coast and San Giovanni Rotondo, home to the beloved St. Pio from 1916 until his death in 1968.


Day 5 San Giovanni Rotondo. Excursion to Monte Sant'Angelo

Attend Mass this morning at the SANTA MARIA DELLE GRAZIE (Old Church). Later, visit the FRIARY of Padre Pio, including his tomb, cell, confessional, and the PADRE PIO PILGRIMAGE CHURCH (New Church). Afterwards, visit the nearby SHRINE OF MONTE SANT’ANGELO, one of Christendom’s most celebrated shrines and where St. Michael the Archangel appeared in 490, 492, and 1656. Return to San Giovanni Rotondo for a second overnight.


Day 6 San Giovanni Rotondo–Lanciano–Loreto–Assisi

Visit ST. FRANCIS’ church in Lanciano, home of the Sanctuary of the Eucharistic Miracle, and attend morning Mass. Afterwards, a guided visit takes you to the LORETO SANCTUARY, including the HOLY HOUSE, where, according to tradition, angels transported the home of the blessed Virgin Mary. Arrive at the hilltop village of Assisi, home of St. Francis and St. Clare.


Day 7 Assisi

Enclosed by ramparts and little changed since the Middle Ages, Assisi sprawls prettily across the slopes of Monte Subasio and retains its medieval character. After attending early morning Mass at St. Francis Basilica, famous for its 14th-century paintings by Giotto, meet your Local Guide. On the agenda are visits to the UPPER and LOWER BASILICAS of St. Francis and the BASILICA OF ST. CLARE, founder of the Order of Poor Clares. Next, visit the BASILICA of Santa Maria degli Angeli, situated at the foot of Assisi’s hills and protecting the Porziuncola, where St. Francis is said to have founded the first group of the Order of Friars Minor in 1209. See the Cappella del Transito (Chapel of the Transit), where the saint died in 1226.


Day 8 Assisi–Cascia–Rome

Travel to Cascia this morning, situated in Umbria and home of St. Rita, the “Patron Saint of Impossible Causes.” Visit the SANCTUARY and the MAJOR BASILICA, the chapel that houses the tomb of St. Rita. Also see the MINOR BASILICA, home of the Eucharistic Miracle that is commemorated each year with the Feast of Corpus Christi. Return to Rome for a final overnight and a farewell dinner.


Day 9 Rome

Your vacation ends with breakfast this morning.


 Tour Director

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: 10

There's sage travel advice that "When in Rome, do as the Romans do!" That's my goal...to help every traveler experience Italy through an Italian perspective. We'll get to the heart and soul of each town-the sights, sounds, and flavors that make each place so unique. You'll definitely come away with a better understanding of why we say, "Italians do it better!"


ROME Parco Tirreno (ST) or Holiday Inn Express S. Giovanni (ST),
SAN GIOVANNI ROTONDO Hotel Parco delle Rose (F) or Hotel Colonne (ST),
ASSISI AREA Casa Leonori (ST) or Domus Pacis (ST)

 Know Before You Go

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* The "Starting at" or listed price is based on the lowest price available to book. Price is per passenger based on double occupancy and does not include airfare; additional fees/charges are not included. If a price is crossed out, the new price includes a limited time promotional offer(s) – please review current promotions or deals for additional information. Some tours require intra-vacation flights (and in some cases intra-vacation segments must be purchased from Cosmos).