Day 1: Australia – – Athens
Depart Australia today to begin your Greek adventure.
Day 2: Athens
Welcome to Greece. On arrival in Athens your will be met and transferred to your hotel. Spend the rest of the day at your leisure. Athens has been the centre of Greek civilization for some 4,000 years. The capital of modern Greece, it’s still dominated by 5th-century-B.C.E. landmarks, including the Acropolis, a hilltop citadel topped with ancient buildings such as the colonnaded Parthenon temple.
Day 3: Athens (B)
After your breakfast, depart for your Athens sightseeing tour including the Acropolis and the New Acropolis Museum. Our expert guide will take you to see the centre of the city, Constitution Square (Syntagma), the House of Parliament, the Memorial to the Unknown Soldier and the National library. On your way to the Acropolis you will see the Hadrian’s Arch, the Temple of Olympian Zeus and have a short stop at the Panathenaic Stadium where the first Modern Olympic Games were held in 1896. At the Acropolis visit the architectural masterpieces of the Golden Age of Athens: the Propylaea, the Temple of Athena Nike, the Erechtheion and finally the famous Parthenon. Return to your hotel and remaining of your day at leisure.
Day 4: Athens – Mykonos (B)
After breakfast you’ll be Transferred to the port of Piraeus to catch the high speed ferry to Mykonos. In Greek mythology, Mykonos was named after its first ruler, Mykons, the son or grandson of the god Apollo and a local hero. The island is also said to have been the location of a great battle between Zeus and Titans and where Hercules killed the invincible giants having lured them from the protection of Mount Olympus. On arrival in Mykonos Island you will be transferred to your hotel for check in. Rest of your day at your leisure to discover the cosmopolitan Island of Mykonos.
Day 5: Mykonos (B)
After breakfast, enjoy a walking tour in Mykonos town, the small and narrow streets offer many possibilities to take nice photographs in the early morning. Stop and see the famous wind-mills and find Petros The Pelecan, the mascot of Mykonos. The rest of the day at leisure on the beloved Island of the international “Jet-Setters” with its whitewashed cubic houses, windmills and chapels, the wonderful sandy beaches, shops, galleries and the incredible night life.
Day 6: Mykonos – Paros (B)
This morning leave Mykonos behind you as you are transferred to the pier to board the high speed ferry to Paros. Paros seems like a world away from the lively atmosphere of Mykonos, with traditional villages and Greek way of life. The Parian, particularly Naoussa, Parikia and Lefkes, are perfect samples of Cycladic architecture, with whitewashed sugar houses, paved streets and blue-domed churches. The beaches are famous for the exotic water and the golden sand. Upon arrival in Paros Island transfer to your hotel for check in. Remainder of your day at your leisure to discover the Island of Paros.
Day 7: Paros (B)
After breakfast proceed for a walking tour of Parikia. We walk through the old town towards the Venetian castle (13th century) and the church of Saint Konstantinos & Eleni which is situated on the highest spot of Parikia town. After, we take a short walk towards the most famous and one of the oldest churches of Greece, Panagia Ekatontapyliani (our lady of the hundred doors), built around 400 AC. Remainder of your day at your leisure.
Day 8: Paros – Santorini (B)
Today, transfer to the pier to board your high speed ferry to Santorini. Santorini may well have conquered a corner of your imagination before you’ve even set eyes on it. With multi-coloured cliffs soaring over 300m from a sea-drowned caldera, it rests in the middle of the indigo Aegean. It was devastated by a volcanic eruption in the 16th century BC, forever shaping its rugged landscape and villages. On arrival explore this postcard island at your own pace or watch the sun go down over the beautiful caldera.
Day 9: Santorini (B)
Today, your guide will take you on a sightseeing tour of the island visiting the most significant places of Santorini. The excavations of Akrotiri, Perivolos beach, Megalochori and the village Prophet Ilias Monastery. Finish off and incredible day with a visit to Koutsoyannopoulos Winery for wine tasting. Being the only one of its kind in Greece, the Koutsoyannopoulos Wine Museum occupies a natural cave. It is eight meters below ground, 300 meters long and has a labyrinth-like shape. The Koutsoyannopoulos Wine Museum presents the history of wine and the life of vine-growers in Santorini since the 1600s. You will have the opportunity to see representations of the history of wine and to taste four of the best wines that winery produces today, in a specially designed wine-tasting area.
After, return to your hotel where to rest of the afternoon is at leisure to soak up island life. Spend the rest of your time discovering Santorini and its famous sunsets which the island is justifiably famous. They are spectacular from anywhere on the caldera but particularly from Oia on the northern tip of the island.
Day 10: Santorini (B)
Enjoy a day of leisure on Santorini to relax in cliff-top restaurants and laze on sun-soaked beaches.
Day 11: Santorini – Athens (B)
Today enjoy a leisurely morning before being transferred to the port and catch the high speed ferry back to Athens. On arrival into Athens you will be transferred to your hotel where the rest of the evening is at leisure.
Day 12: Athens – – Rome (B)
Today your tour ends after breakfast. You will be transferred to the airport for your onward flight to Rome! On arrival, please make your own way to your hotel. There are plenty of transport options with the quickest being the Leonardo Express train from the airport to the city.
Rome, Italy’s capital, is a sprawling, cosmopolitan city with nearly 3,000 years of globally influential art, architecture and culture on display. Ancient ruins such as the Roman Forum and the Colosseum evoke the power of the former Roman Empire. Vatican City, headquarters of the Roman Catholic Church, boasts St. Peter’s Basilica and the Vatican Museums, which house masterpieces such as Michelangelo’s Sistine Chapel frescoes.
Day 13: Rome (B)
In the morning, meet your Tour Escort and then embark on a full day tour of Italy’s historic capital city. Start the tour at the famous Trevi Fountain. Legend has it, that if you make a wish and toss a coin over your left shoulder into the fountain, you are sure to return to Rome! Pay tribute to the brave Gladiators of Rome, with a visit to the Colosseum. At this amphitheatre, the notorious and gory gladiatorial games were held, where they fought one another and wild animals while the crowd roared! See the triumphal Arch of Constantine, one of the most important commemorative monuments of antiquity and then drive through Piazza Venezia, the main square in Rome, where the grandiose monument to the reunification of Italy is often referred to as the Marble wedding cake! Head to the Vatican City, the smallest nation in the world! Headed by his holiness the Pope, it is the administrative and spiritual capital of Roman Catholicism. It boasts a priceless art collection and is probably per square foot the richest country in the world! Visit the Vatican museum, one of the largest museum complexes in the world. A must see is the Sistine Chapel. The most famous square of the Vatican is St. Peter’s Square with St. Peter’s Basilica, one of the largest churches in the world.
Day 14: Rome – Pompeii – Sorrento – Rome (B)
After breakfast, we drive to Pompeii, the affluent Roman town which was buried under tons of ash which poured down from Mount Vesuvius in AD79. Today, on this half day guided tour visitors can walk through the preserved remains, revealing the daily life of Roman civilisation which was captured in a few dramatic moments. You will be led through the ancient cobbled streets, houses, temples, shops and cafes by a local guide, who will impart the history of one of the world’s most fascinating archaeological experiences. On leaving Pompeii, the coach will follow the spectacular clifftop road to the picturesque coastal resort of Sorrento, overlooking the Bay of Naples and Mount Vesuvius. Return to your hotel in Rome.
Day 15: Rome – Florence (B)
Today’s journey sees us head north, into the Province of Umbria, Italy’s green heartland and the only Italian region that has neither the sea nor another country as its border. Continue onto Tuscany, famed for its picture-perfect landscapes and superb cuisine. Arrive in Florence late afternoon and immediately capture the essence of the heart of the Italian Renaissance.
Day 16: Florence (B)
After breakfast, we proceed to Giotto’s bell tower and then see the Gates of Paradise, located in front of the Cathedral and one of the most famous works of art in the world. Visit the Piazza della Signoria open-air museum then stroll on to Piazza Santa Croce, famous for its Basilica and luxury shops. Your half day guided sightseeing of Florence will end late afternoon but there will still be time for more exploration, maybe wandering down the ancient streets to the Arno River and crossing the historic Ponte Vecchio to the newer district of Oltrarno. This evening is at leisure.
Day 17: Florence – Cinque Terre – Portofino – Genoa (B)
Today we leave Florence and met our local expert for a visit to the UNESCO World Heritage site of Cinque Terre, a string of centuries-old seaside fishing villages set on the rugged Italian Riviera coastline. The oldest of the villages is Monterosso, located on a hilltop and where the main attractions are the Old Castle, the Church of Saint John the Baptist and the Convent of the Capuchin. On leaving Cinque Terre, continue to the elegant seaside village of Portofino, with its colourful houses, boutiques, café bars on the piazzetta and luxurious yachts moored in the harbour. The day ends in Genoa, capital of the Liguria region where we will be check in to our hotel.
Day 18: Genoa – Lake Maggiore (B)
After breakfast, we drive north to the beautiful Italian Lake District, a favourite retreat of the rich and famous. This drive meanders through pretty Alpine scenery before arriving at Lake Maggiore, situated on the south side of the Alps and the second largest lake in Italy. The climate is mild all year, the result being a landscape of exotic plants and luxuriant Mediterranean vegetation. After check-in to our hotel the afternoon is then free for you to enjoy the wonderful natural surroundings and fresh mountain air.
Day 19: Lake Maggiore – Verona – Venice (B)
Today, continue to Verona, situated in northern Italy’s Veneto region and most famous as being the setting for Shakespeare’s ‘Romeo and Juliet’. You will have a chance to walk to Juliet’s balcony in the inner courtyard of the Capulet home, as well as visiting the well-preserved Grand Arena, a 1st century amphitheatre which is still used for open-air concerts and an annual opera festival. Then following a 2½ drive, you will arrive in Venice.
Few cities can claim such a priceless art and history heritage as Venice. This unique city with its magical, spectacular scenery is not just beautiful; it is a real miracle of creative genius: a city built on mud, sand and the slime of a difficult, inhospitable landscape. Venice is the symbol of wise government and freedom. The lagoon was its only defence, there were no palace guards except the Arsenal workers and no parade ground except the sea. During centuries of feudalism and barbarism, Venice symbolised democracy and civilization.
Day 20: Venice (B)
After breakfast, we embark on a half day guided walking tour of Venice. We embark on a cruise from Tronhetto Pier and glide past fairy tale palaces, through incredible miniature canals to the Piazza San Marco (St. Mark’s Square) to where you start your tour. Enjoy Venice’s history as your meander through the narrow alleys. The tour ends with a brief visit to a glass-blowing factory on Murano. One of the oldest and most respected trades in Venice. Learn about the Murano glassmakers, arguably some of the most famous glass artists in the world.
The afternoon is then free to discover Venice Island’s many treasures at your own pace. Some say no visit to Venice can be complete without a ride on one of the iconic gondolas, and you will have time to take a trip on the famous Grand Canal as well as through the smaller canals around the neighbourhood of Venice should you wish (on own account).
Day 21: Venice – – Australia (B)
Today, your tour of Italy concludes after breakfast. At the appropriate time, make your own way to the airport for your homeward flight.
Day 22: Australia
Arrive home today.
Please note: Some flight may arrive home 1 day later