Day 1 : Arrive Rome (2 Nights)
The 'Eternal City' has captivated?travellers?for centuries and you'll not be disappointed as it prepares you for an exhilarating?journey across Europe. On arrival, check?in?to your hotel,?then get ready for your very own introduction to Rome?or relax at your hotel following your journey.?Later this evening, you'll meet your Travel Director and?fellow?travellers?for a?glimpse into what lies ahead along your journey. Maybe soak?up the city's effervescent atmosphere?during an Optional Experience dinner of light dinner of Italian specialties.
Accommodation : Ergife Palace
Day 2 : Rome Sightseeing and Free Time
With so much to see and do, you could explore Rome for an eternity without getting bored.?Join?an Optional Experience to Michelangelo's famous Sistine Chapel and the Vatican Museums or?start your day the Italian way -?slow and relaxed.?Get to grips with the city's main attractions, joining a Local Specialist at Vatican City, the world's smallest country.?Stand in St. Peter's Square, sharing your space with devoted pilgrims and pigeons. Visit St. Peter's Basilica?and?view Michelangelo's?greatest work, the sorrowful?Pietà. Cross the Tiber?next,?to view the mighty Colosseum and?the?countless other?ancient sites?which?featured prominently in the days of the powerful Roman Empire.?Choose an Optional Experience to discover more of Rome with a Local Specialist.
Day 3 : Rome – Siena – Florence (2 Nights)
Tuscany may claim to be the heart of Italy, but it is the stunning medieval city of Siena which will capture yours. Its fortified walls, towers and palaces emerge from the rolling countryside on your journey through the Chianti region. This former economic and military power today hosts the biannual Palio horse race, injecting a shot of colour amidst the burnt sienna façades of the city's Il Campo. Your orientation tour will reveal the city's rich heritage, architecture and cuisine, and explain why Siena is renowned for its signature panforte fruit cake, which you should try to sample during a visit at a pasticceria. Continue through stunning Tuscan landscapes to our hotel in Florence, the birthplace of the Renaissance.
Accommodation : Starhotels Vespucci
Day 4 : Florence Orientation and Free Time
No expense was spared to exalt the glory of Florence through art and architecture and you'll see first-hand how this city paved its way to a modern age. Head to Piazzale Michelangelo to capture the city's signature skyline with its imposing Duomo looming over the labyrinthine streets. During your free time you could choose to visit Piazza della Signoria, the city's main square where many of the political and artistic treasures of the city can be seen. Don't miss the Ponte Vecchio, the Cathedral of Santa Maria del Fiore, Giotto's Bell Tower and the Baptistery. You'll have time to shop for gold and leathercraft and perhaps you can choose an Optional Experience to Pisa where you'll see the Leaning Tower and enjoy a local meal at a Tuscan farmhouse.
Day 5 : Florence – Bologna – Venice (2 Nights)
Cross the Apennine Mountains to the city of Bologna where?you?will join a Local Specialist to view the city's Kissing Towers and?Il?Gigante, commonly known as?Neptune's Fountains. Arrive in the island city of Venice later. You'll arrive just in time for an optional Gondola and Grand Canal cruise - grand palazzi, churches and ornate bridges line your journey. Enjoy dinner at your hotel, then spend the rest of the evening exploring the labyrinthine streets on your own.
Accommodation : Palladio
Day 6 : Venice Orientation and Free Time
Watch talented master craftsmen at work?on?Giudecca Island, then take to the waters of the canal and cruise by private launch to St. Mark's Square, the gateway to the city. The Winged Lion of Venice remains an enduring symbol of the city and one you'll see repeatedly as you explore the city. Admire the ornate Doge's Palace, the Basilica of St. Mark and the Bridge of Sighs. Later, consider taking a cruise across the lagoon to Burano Island.
Day 7 : Venice – Verona – Lucerne Region (2 Nights)
From Roman ruins to Romeo and Juliet, Verona certainly is the stuff of legends. Your first stop today is the city that served as a backdrop for Shakespeare's famous love story and you'll have an opportunity to view the balcony where the fictional Juliet once called for her Romeo. Admire the Roman Arena where gripping performances are held to this day, then head north to the Italian and Swiss Lake Districts via Como and Lugano. Cross the Swiss border bound for the heart of Switzerland on your very own 'Grand Tour' of Europe.
Accommodation : City Brunnen
Day 8 : Lucerne Orientation and Free Time
Take a step back in time when you join your Travel Director for an orientation tour, exploring the Old Town, the ancient wooden Chapel Bridge and Lion Monument. The mournful, mortally wounded lion hewn from rock commemorates the sacrifice made by the Swiss Guards who died defending Louis XVI during the French Revolution. You'll have time to explore the city your way, perhaps with some retail therapy. You could choose to ascend to the alpine heavens instead, joining an Optional Experience up Mount Pilatus for a lively folklore show including a traditional lunch, including cheese fondue.
Day 9 : Lucerne Region – Paris (2 Nights)
Cross the border into France this morning and journey through the vineyards of Burgundy. Take a walk through Paris's grand past, its dynamic present and exciting future. You'll discover that this is one capital that doesn't hold back and doesn't expect you to either. After a day of scenic driving, you'll arrive in the City of Light with enough time to join an Optional Experience featuring a cruise on the Seine and the illuminations of Paris.
Accommodation : Novotel 14 Porte d'Orléans
Day 10 : Paris Sightseeing and Free Time
All the main icons feature on your morning sightseeing tour of Paris with your Travel Director.?From the?Eiffel Tower?and grand?Champs?Élysées?to?the iconic Arc de?Triomphe which honours those who fought and died for France over the centuries, you won't miss a thing.?There's plenty of time this afternoon to discover Paris for yourself.?There's even time to people-watch at a sidewalk bistro before a real highlight this evening - an optional dinner and cabaret performance.
Day 11 : Paris – London
Head?north?across the World War I battlefields of the Somme?to Calais, then?catch?your ferry to Dover?and?continue towards?London, where your epic European journey comes to an end.