Best of Italy - Insight Guided Vacations

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

Vacation type: Regional Journey

Insight Choice

Florence: Choose between a visit to the Accademia Museum with an art historian to see Michelangelo's monumental statue, David. Alternatively, wander through the market stalls on a guided shopping tour and enjoy all the treats and trinkets on show.


Insight Experiences

  • Rome: Sight-see 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

SEE the Colosseum, Roman Forum, Renaissance palaces and Baroque churches in Rome · the Florence Cathedral, the bell tower, the Gates of Paradise, a leather-work demonstration in Florence · the Leaning Tower and Square of Miracles in Pisa · the Doge’s Palace, the Bridge of Sighs and St. Mark’s Square in Venice · Mount Subasio and Church of St. Mary of the Angels in Assisi · the mighty Mount Vesuvious in Sorrento

VISIT the Vatican Museums, the Bramante Staircase, the Sistine Chapel and St. Peter’s Basilica in Rome · the Piazza della Signoria and Piazza Santa Croce in Florence · the Basilica of St. Francis in Assisi

JOIN in the extravagant festivities of the Carnevale Venezia in Venice (for a selected time in February).

CITY TOURS of Rome, Florence, Assisi, Isle of Capri, Pompeii, all with Local Experts.

RIDE in a Gondola through the canals of Venice while being serenaded · in an open-air taxi and funicular to the Isle of Capri.

CRUISE to St. Mark’s Square · to the Isle of Capri.


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.

 

Location:

Rome, Lazio, Italy, Florence, Tuscany, Italy, Venice, Veneto, Italy, Assisi, IT, Sorrento, Campania, Italy, Italy

12  Days | 10  nights
Call to book: 1-866-529-2079
Travelling as a group of 10 or more?  Request a group quote.

INCLUSIONS

  • Round-trip flights to Rome (if flight and tour package option is chosen)
  • 10 nights of accommodation
  • 16 meals including 10 Buffet Breakfasts (BB), 1 Afternoon Tea, (AT) and 5 Dinners with Wine, (DW) all with tea or coffee
  • Transportation by luxury air-conditioned coach
  • Porterage (1 piece of luggage per passenger)
  • All hotel tips, charges and local taxes
  • $50 CAD credit voucher for an Optional Experience (described in the itinerary below; 1 voucher per person)
  • English-speaking travel director
  • Audio headsets for flexible sightseeing
  • Earn and redeem Aeroplan® Miles

Insight Services

  • Our highly skilled Travel Director will ensure your journey is seamless, serving as your expert guide, consummate organizer, 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 WiFi (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 Air Canada Vacations, you may purchase transfers or make your own way from/to the airport.

ITINERARY

Day 1

Depart Canada

Fly to Rome.

Day 2

Welcome to Rome

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 to your hotel at 9:30 a.m., 12:30 p.m. and 3:30 p.m. Join your Travel Director at 5:30 p.m. for a uniquely Roman Welcome Dinner at a local restaurant.

Meal(s): Dinner with wine
Accommodation:
(1 night)

Day 3

Rome

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 lines and gain 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.

Meal(s): Buffet breakfast
Accommodation:
(1 night)

Day 4

Rome - Florence

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.

Meal(s): Buffet breakfast, Lunch with wine, Dinner with wine
Accommodation:
(1 night)

Day 5

Florence

SIGHTSEEING                                        Explore Florence with Insight Choice. Choose between a visit to the Accademia Museum with an art historian to see Michelangelo's monumental statue, David. Alternatively, wander through the market stalls on a guided shopping tour and enjoy all the treats and trinkets on show. Continue to the multi-coloured marble cathedral to admire Giotto's bell tower and Gates of Paradise. Visit Piazza della Signoria and explore the area around Santa Croce Basilica. After a demonstration of leatherwork, there's free time to shop or venture on your own. In the evening, why not sample the fine Florentine cuisine of tasty starters and typical Tuscan dishes accompanied by Chianti wine?

Meal(s): Buffet breakfast
Accommodation:
(1 night)

Day 6

Florence - Pisa - Venice

PISA TO VENICE, THE QUEEN OF THE ADRIATIC

This 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 colonnaded bell tower behind the cathedral. Relax 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. This evening, enjoy indulging in a delicious dinner at a local restaurant.

Meal(s): Buffet breakfast, Dinner with wine
Accommodation:
(1 night)

Day 7

Venice

RELAXED START - VENICE AND THE MAGIC OF LA SERENISSIMA

In the morning, visit to an arts centre on Giudecca Island will allow you to admire the age-old skill of glassblowing by local artisans. In the afternoon, your private boat takes you past historic 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. Afterwards, board a traditional gondola for a serenade along the romantic canals.

Meal(s): Buffet breakfast
Accommodation:
(1 night)

Day 8

Venice - Assisi

RELAXED START - INTO THE HILLS OF UMBRIA TO ASSISI

Journey to the peaceful mountain town of Assisi. See the Church of St. Mary of the Angels, 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, where the frescoes by Giotto heralded a new era in Italian art.

Meal(s): Buffet breakfast, Dinner with wine
Accommodation:
(1 night)

Day 9

Assisi - Sorrento

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 Vesuvius. After checking into your hotel, spend the rest of the day at your leisure.

Meal(s): Buffet breakfast
Accommodation:
(1 night)

Day 10

Sorrento - Capri - Sorrento

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 on a funicular ride and return to Sorrento for some time to relax.

Meal(s): Buffet breakfast
Accommodation:
(1 night)

Day 11

Sorrento - Pompeii - Rome

POMPEII, FROZEN IN TIME AND ONTO ROME 

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. In the evening, join your fellow travellers for a memorable Celebration Dinner of delicious Italian cuisine and wine.

Meal(s): Buffet breakfast, Dinner with Wine
Accommodation:
(1 night)

Day 12

Rome - Return to Canada

Departure transfers arrive at Rome's Fiumicino Leonardo da Vinci Airport at approximately 7:00 a.m. and 09:30 a.m.

Meal(s): Buffet breakfast

ACCOMMODATIONS

WHERE YOU'LL STAY

The hotels listed below are presented as examples for your reference only. Where “or similar” is indicated, guests will stay at a hotel of the same star rating. The hotel accommodations will be communicated to the consumer or travel agent prior to departure.

LOCATION
HOTEL
Rome, Lazio, Italy
Hotel Romanico Palace(or similar)
Florence, Tuscany, Italy
Hotel Athenaeum Florence/Hotel Londra(or similar)
Venice, Veneto, Italy
Bellini Venezia(or similar)
Assisi, IT
Hotel Giotto Assisi(or similar)
Sorrento, Campania, Italy
Hotel Regina/Grand Hotel Cesare Augusto(or similar)
Rome, Lazio, Italy
Kolbe Hotel/Hotel Ritz (or similar)

Room Specifications

Unless otherwise indicated, guests will stay in a standard room at all hotels during the trip.
Room occupancy: 2 adults travelling together.
Twin Room. Single or Triple occupancy option: Travellers who prefer to stay in a single occupancy or a triple occupancy room can call us book: 1 866 529-2079. Subject to availability.

IMPORTANT INFO

DEPARTURE DATES

2020 Dates:
May 7*, 21, 23, 28*
June 4, 18*, 20* & 25
July 2, 4*, 9*, 16, 18*, 23 & 30*
August 1, 6*, 13*, 20*, 27 & 29*
September 3*, 5, 10*, 12, 17*, 19, 24 & 26*
October 1, 3*, 8, 10* & 15

*Non-definite departure dates

Travel to Europe often requires an overnight flight. Please arrange your departure flight to arrive on or before the Tour Start Date.

MORE TO KNOW

For an additional $160CAD per person, travellers can pre-pay gratuities for the Travel Director and Driver. Call us at 1 866 529-2079 to add this option to your reservation.

ACTIVITIES

Most Insight Guided Vacations 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 trip. Please note, many Optional Experiences are operated by independent third party suppliers, not Insight Vacations. The Optional Experiences and pricing listed here are a guideline only and subject to change.

Guided visit to the Colosseum

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.

Please note: This optional experience is subject to availability and involves reservations and entrance and prepayments. If you decide to cancel this optional experience, a 50% cancellation fee will be incurred.

Adult Price: EUR 50

Code: ROM0003

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 50

Code: ROM0017

Rome of the Ancient Christians

Outside the ancient Roman city walls we visit the early Christian Catacombs, underground cemeteries carved out of soft Tufa Stone. Nearby we also visit one of the major basilicas of Rome, St. Paul's Outside the Walls. This is 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

Code: ROM0022

San Gimignano Excursion

A wonderful excursion to Tuscany's most famous hilltop town! Visit San Gimignano, considered a medieval Manhattan, due to its towers that 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

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 Chianti countryside, 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

Code: FLO0003

Dinner in the Tuscan Hills

A fabulous dinner of Tuscan specialties 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

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

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

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: EUR 72

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

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 beachside cafe.

Adult Price: EUR 44

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

Code: SOR0001

Prices listed in the itinerary are valid as of  15 August, 2019 and are subject to change without notice.

TRANSPORTATION

Upon arrival at Rome airport, transfers leave for your hotel at 9:30 a.m., 12:30 p.m. and 3:30 P.M. Guests arriving later should make their own way to the hotel. Return transfers on the last travel day will arrive at Rome's Fiumicino Leonardo da Vinci Airport at approximately 7:00 a.m. and 9:30 a.m.

Pricing display

Prices take into account taxes and are rounded to the nearest full dollar. Full details on taxes and fees are on the booking page.