Day 1: Australia – – Rome
Depart Australia today to begin your journey of Italy’s Tuscany region & the Greek Isles.
Day 2: Rome
Welcome to Rome! On arrival clear custom formalities and make your own way to your hotel. You are then free at leisure to enjoy your first night in Italy.
Day 3: Rome (B)
Free day at leisure. Today is a full day to explore Rome at your own pace. 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 4: Rome – – Assisi (B)
Enjoy breakfast and check out from your hotel and make your way to Rome’s Termini railway station to take a regional train from Rome to Assisi (direct train 07:58am arriving at 10:07am). On arrival into Assisi, make your way to the Hotel Giotto in Assisi city centre. We recommend a short taxi ride from the train station to the hotel. Upon check-in there is free time to visit the town including the Roman remains under the still standing Minerva temple and the Basilica of St Francis decorated with frescos by Giotto. Best known as the birthplace of St. Francis, Italy’s patron saint, Assisi lies amid Umbria’s rolling hills. Religious pilgrims have come here for centuries to visit the Basilica of San Francesco (where St. Francis is buried) and the Basilica of Santa Chiara (to see the tomb of St. Clare).
Day 5: Assisi – Perugia – Cortona (B)
After breakfast your private driver guide will pick you up at the Hotel at 09:30am to begin your journey into the heart of Umbria. Enjoy time in Perugia, the walled city set high on the hills of Umbria and enjoy time to explore this city known for its beautiful buildings, its food and its summer jazz festivals. History seeps through every shadowy corner of these streets and an aimless wander through them can feel like time travel. After leaving Perugia and enroute to Cortona, stop at a local winery for a wine tasting before arriving in Cortona this afternoon where the rest of the afternoon is at leisure.
Day 6: Cortona – San Gimignano – Siena – Firenze (B)
This morning, your private guide will collect you from the hotel again around 09:30am for un unforgettable excursion to Tuscany beginning the day with a visit to the amazing medieval village of San Gimignano. Already a powerful community in the 1100, San Gimignano became famous for its daring towers built to symbolize the wealth of the town and of its merchants. Situated along the busy French road that connected the north part of Europe to Rome and the Adriatic Sea, the village of San Gimignano profited economically from the constant flow of goods, textile, wine and saffron, that travelled along that medieval “freeway”. After lunch, we will reach the city of Siena, the Gothic dream: Perennial enemy of Florence and the cradle of the Ghibelline party, the two cities have seen 300 years of wars, battles with its share of intrigues and betrayals. Siena’s outstanding black and white marble Cathedral and the Baptistery represent the greatness of the city as well as its religious vocation. The town hall, unique as well, is located on the main square Campo, a 12th Century shell shape square. This is where the famous Palio, the medieval horse race, takes place every summer in July and August. No rules is the only rule during this mad bare back horse race where 10 out of the 17 districts of Siena are represented. In the middle of the square crowned by austere palaces and tall prestigious towers, as the crowds’ cheers, the horse men and the city’s nobles parade dressed in medieval costumes.
After time to enjoy wandering the streets of Siena we will proceed to Florence, the heart of the Renaissance and the capital of Italy’s Tuscany region.
Day 7: Florence – – Venice (B)
This morning is free for individual activities in Florence. Your hotel is very centrally located and will allow for easy walking to the famous Duomo. In the afternoon, make your own way to Florence central train station, a short walk from your hotel, to catch a highspeed train to Venice. Arrival at Santa Lucia Rail way station and transfer on your own to your Venice Island hotel. Check in enjoy the rest of the afternoon exploring the canals of Venice.
Day 8: Venice – Embark on Cruise (B,D)
This morning is free to enjoy the city of Venice. The position of your hotel will allow you to easy access some of the city’s best sights. At the appropriate time, make your own way to the port to board your deluxe 7 night Mediterranean cruise of Croatia and the Greek Islands on board the Rhapsody of the Seas.
Day 9: Kotor, Montenegro (B,L,D)
This afternoon we make port in Kotor. Kotor is a fortified town on Montenegro’s Adriatic coast, in a bay near the limestone cliffs of Mt. Lovćen. Characterized by winding streets and squares, its medieval old town has several Romanesque churches, including Kotor Cathedral. Located where the Balkans meet the Adriatic, Kotor sits on a deep bay surrounded by soaring cliffs. A hilltop fortress stands guard over the walled medieval Old Town, where you’ll find small piazzas, elegant palazzos, lively cafés and shops to explore.
Day 10: Corfu, Greece (B,L,D)
Wake up as we make our way into the port of Corfu. Corfu is a magical mix of history, culture and nature that has enchanted great powers from the Byzantines to the British. Visit the countryside and beaches, explore elegant palaces or stroll the streets and lanes of the Old Town. Its rich culture reflects years spent under Italian, French and British rule before it was united with Greece in 1864. Beaches range from the fine sand and shallow waters of Ayios Georgios to the water sports and party atmosphere at Cavos.
Day 11: Athens, Greece (B,L,D)
Discover the splendours of Greece’s epic past in the ancient city that is also the capital of a modern nation. The hilltop Acropolis has overlooked Athens for 2,500 years. Below, a parklike promenade links many iconic sights. Athens has been the centre of Greek civilization for some 4,000 years. Both ancient and modern, with equal measures of grunge and grace, bustling Athens is a heady mix of history and edginess. Iconic monuments mingle with first-rate museums, lively cafes and al fresco dining.
Day 12: Mykonos, Greece (B,L,D)
Today we are in one of the most popular Greek islands, Mykonos. Mykonos mixes sun, fun, glamour and tradition. Relax at a beach and wander the maze-like streets of the scenic, chic port town. Delos, a sacred islet of antiquity, is a boat ride away. Mykonos is famous for its beaches. Get lost amidst the endless waters of the Aegean or visit the birthplace of Apollo on this historic island.
Day 13: Argostoli, Greece (B,L,D)
Today watch as we cruise to the Ionion Islands, before making port at Kefalonia. Kefalonia, the largest of the Ionion Islands, is perfect for nature and history lovers. Discover rugged mountains, forests, golden beaches and dramatic coastline. In the port of Argostoli explore a vibrant culture shaped by a rich past. This lush green island with breathtaking beaches and crystal clear waters of greenish-blue colours will leave you speechless.
Day 14: At Sea (B,L,D)
Today, enjoy a relaxing day at sea to enjoy everything your ship has to offer. Jam pack your day with every type of activity or simply do nothing! The choices are endless.
Day 15: Venice – – Australia (B)
This morning we arrive back in Venice. Disembark from your cruise ship and make your own way to the airport. Depending on the time of your flight, you might wish to store you baggage at the port and enjoy the day in Venice before making your own way to the airport to board your flight home.
Day 16: Australia
Arrive home today Please note: Some flights arrive home 1 day later