T781 Tourcode :SGT_4

Small Group Tour: Rome, Venice & Tuscany 
Rome – Assisi – Venice – Tuscan Countryside - Florence – Siena - Rome

8 days / 7 nights

Special Deluxe Tour for Small Groups on private basis
Visit the Vatican Museums and St. Peter's Basilica, explore Assisi - the birthplace of St. Francis, enjoy a walking tour of Venice, relax yourself in a beautiful Tuscan villa in the countryside, admire the Michelangelo's statue of David at Florence's Galleria dell' Accademia, join a walking tour of Siena including the location of the Palio horserace, taste Italian cheese & wine. 
Day 1Rome
This morning your group will arrive to "the Eternal City." After you collect your bags and proceed through customs, you will be greeted by our friendly English-speaking assistant, who will welcome your group to Italy and escort it to a private bus. From here your group will transfer to your hotel in Rome. As Italian hotels' official check-in time is usually 2:00 pm, if you're arriving before that you are welcome to store your baggage with the reception staff and begin exploring this fascinating city.

(If you want to begin sightseeing, we suggest you try to see the Pantheon, Trevi Fountain, Spanish Steps, Piazza Navona or Campo dei Fiori Square). You are free to explore on your own until evening, when you and your fellow travellers will have dinner together in the hotel's restaurant.
Day 2Vatican Museums – The Sistine Chapel - Rome sightseeing tour
After breakfast in the hotel, the group will travel by private bus to Vatican City, the world's smallest independent state. The guide will start the tour with an overview of the history of the Vatican Museums and Sistine Chapel. You will see the Hall of Tapestries and the Maps Gallery, but the highlight of your tour will be the Sistine Chapel, whose ceiling is covered with Michelangelo's famous paintings of the "Creation" and "Last Judgment." You will then exit into St. Peter's Basilica, the largest church in Christendom. See the many treasures including the golden mosaics of the apse, Bernini's bronze baldachin and the famed "Pieta" by Michelangelo. The last stop on your group's tour of Vatican City is St. Peter's Square to see the 4000-year-old Egyptian obelisk that stands in its center.

After a break for lunch (on your own), the group will start its guided tour of Ancient Rome with a visit inside Rome's iconic Colosseum. In its heyday it was capable of seating up to 50,000 spectators. Afterwards you will walk over to explore the most interesting sites in the Roman Forum. The guided tour will finish back at the hotel, but for group members who want to stay in Rome's historic center, we suggest the bus driver to drop them near Piazza Navona. The evening is at leisure. Overnight in Rome.
Day 3Assisi - Venice
After breakfast your group will head north by private bus, passing through the Umbria region to the delightful town of Assisi, best-known as the birthplace of St. Francis, founder of the Franciscan Order. A local guide will take your group on a tour of the Cathedral and its amazing frescoes by Giotto, who is generally considered to be the first of the great Italian Renaissance artists. Afterwards you will have time for lunch before continuing on to Venice - nicknamed "City of Water", and "City of Masks" over the ages, among other titles - where we will spend two nights. Transfer to the hotel’s location by boat. Upon arrival check in – and enjoy your evening in Venice.
Day 4Venice sightseeing tour
After breakfast this morning your guide will take you on an exciting walking tour of this City of Islands. See St. Mark's Square, the lively central square where the only traffic is that of humans (and pigeons!). Visit inside St. Mark's Basilica, one of the best examples of Byzantine architecture found anywhere in the world. See the famed Bell Tower and the Clock Tower, which displays not only the time of day, but also the dominant sign of the Zodiac and the current phase of the moon. Continue on to the Bridge of Sighs, which is made of white limestone; it passes over the Rio di Palazzo, connecting the old prisons with the interrogations rooms at the Doge's Palace. This afternoon is free. Perhaps you might enjoy a boat trip to the Lagoon Islands this afternoon – or a gondola experience this evening. Tonight, you are free to savour the seasonal flavours of this unique city's cuisine on your own.
Day 5Relax at a Tuscan Villa in the countryside
This morning your group will depart to Venice and begin its scenic bus journey to a lovely Tuscan villa for a two-night stay in the countryside. Tonight your home is a splendid villa not far from Florence that is surrounded by century-old trees and parkland. The villa offers a beautiful swimming pool which blends seamlessly with its delightful garden amidst the natural setting of the Tuscan hills. This evening your group will enjoy a dinner of local Tuscan cuisine at the villa, prepared with care by your friendly hosts. On request it is possible to organize a cooking class at the villa (by extra charge).
Day 6Florence – Wine tasting
After breakfast this morning, your group will travel to the gorgeous city of Florence by private bus. Upon arrival you'll meet a local guide who will show you the Duomo (Cathedral Church) and Piazza della Signoria, a central gathering place for locals as well as tourists. Your tour will end with a visit to the Galleria dell'Accademia to admire Michelangelo's statue of David. After seeing so many of Florence's Renaissance attractions, the afternoon is yours to relax or explore further. You'll return later afternoon to the villa, and prior to dinner enjoy a tasting of locally-produced wines.
Day 7Visit to a farmhouse with cheese tasting - Siena – Rome by night
After breakfast your group will check out and travel by private bus through the beautiful Tuscan countryside to Siena. On the way you will stop in a farmhouse where you will visit the dairy and the farmers will explain you the cheese making process. The visit includes a tour of the grounds, a tour of the stables, all the information about the history and the mission of the organic farmhouse. Next you will be able to taste each one of the cheeses produced here coupled with organic honey, bread and of course wine!

Proceed then to Siena. This fine medieval city sits on gentle hills between three river valleys. Notice the medieval ramparts where you are greeted with the Latin inscription "Cor Magis Tibi Sena Pandit" (Siena opens its heart to you). Upon arrival a local guide will take the group through the maze of narrow streets to one of the finest squares in Italy, the Piazza Del Campo where the famous Palio Horse Race is held twice a year. You will also visit the 13th-century Cathedral to see its many works of art including the black and white marble walls and columns – as well as the marble floors with decorative inlays. Lunch on your own. After your tour of Siena, you will continue on to your hotel in Rome. This evening enjoy a farewell dinner at a local restaurant. After dinner the group will see the landmarks of Rome illuminated with the soft light of an Italian evening, and you'll make a stop to toss your coin into the Trevi Fountain, a time-honored tradition to ensure you will again return to this Eternal City. Overnight in Rome.
Day 8Departure
After breakfast in the hotel, check out and transfer by private coach to Rome's Fiumicino Airport for your return flight.

ID: T781, Tourcode :SGT_4


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