10-Nights Amalfi Coast & Sicily Escorted Tour
This comprehensive escorted tour begins in Rome, where guests can get to know the capital’s beloved ancient sites before heading to Naples, with its 12th-century seaside Castel dell’Ovo and striking views from the Piazza del Plebiscito. After a visit to the excavation site of Pompeii, arrive in picturesque Sorrento. Here guests will spend the day exploring the Isle of Capri and floating through the eerily stunning Blue Grotto. After an overnight ferry, guests arrive in Palermo, where they have a day to stroll through the Mercato di Ballarò or gape at the vaulted gold mosaics of the 12th-century Cappella Palatina. Additional highlights of the trip include a boat ride through Marsala’s Saline della Laguna and visits to Agrigento’s ancient Valley of the Temples, Syracuse, and Mt. Etna. The tour will conclude with a stay in the hilltop town of Taormina, famous for its Greco-Roman theater and incredible coastal views.
10 nights from $2599 per personSupplier: Europe Express
Sprawled across seven legendary hills, romantic and beautiful Rome was one of the great centers of the ancient world. Although its beginning is shrouded in legend and its development is full of intrigue and struggle, Rome has always been and remains the Eternal City.
Rome enjoyed its greatest splendor during the 1st and 2nd centuries when art flourished, monumental works of architecture were erected, and the mighty Roman legions swept outward, conquering all of Italy. These victorious armies then swept across the Mediterranean and beyond to conquer most of the known world. With Rome's establishment as capital of the western world, a new ascent to glory began.
Today's Rome, with its splendid churches, ancient monuments and palaces, spacious parks, tree-lined boulevards, fountains, outdoor cafes and elegant shops, is one of the world’s most attractive and exciting cities. Among the most famous monuments is the Colosseum. As you walk its cool, dark passageways, imagine the voices that once filled the arena as 50,000 spectators watched combats between muscled gladiators and ferocious animals.
Stop to see the remains of the Forum, once the city's political and commercial center. In later times, Rome's squares were enhanced with such imposing structures as the Vittorio Emanuele Monument and grandiose fountains like the Fontana di Trevi. Join the millions who stand in awe of Christendom’s most magnificent church and admire the timeless masterpieces of Michelangelo's frescoes in the Sistine Chapel.
Rome jars the senses and captures the soul. Grasp all you can during the short, precious time you have available in the Eternal City. With so much to see and do, a day or two will only allow you a sampling of the city's marvelous treasures.
Caution: As in many big cities and tourist destinations purse snatching and pickpocketing is common. Valuable jewelry and excess cash are best left in a safety deposit box in your hotel.
Shopping For most visitors shopping for beautiful Italian leather articles, designer shoes, fashions for men and women, linens, knitwear, silk scarves and ties is a favorite pastime. Except for tourist-oriented shops, the majority of stores are closed on Sundays. Some of the department stores, such as Rinascente, open in the late afternoon on Sundays.
Cuisine Rome's choice of restaurants is mindboggling as is the variety of cuisine. Whether your meal is at a top-rated restaurant or a rustic trattoria, you can be sure that you will enjoy your food, especially when accompanied by wines from the hill towns surrounding Rome.
Other Sights Rome's attractions are endless, and depending on how much time you have at your disposal a careful selection has to be made about what to see. Be aware of horrendous traffic conditions and major construction work all around the city in preparation of Jubilee 2000, the Holy Year. Some of the sights not to be missed:
Piazza Venezia - This busy square is easily recognized by its imposing Vittorio Emanuele II Monument. The white marble structure was inaugurated in 1911 as a symbol of Italy’s unification.
The Forum - Once the civic heart of ancient Rome, today the remains include a series of ruins, marble fragments, isolated columns and some worn arches.
Colosseum - No visit to Rome is complete without a stop at this awe-inspiring theater, which is among the world’s most celebrated buildings. Here ancient Rome flocked to see gladiatorial contests and numerous other spectacles.
Trevi Fountain - Take a stroll to Rome's famous fountain. A spectacular fantasy of mythical sea creatures and cascades of splashing water, the fountain is one of the city's foremost attractions. Legend has it that visitors must toss a coin into the fountain to ensure their return to Rome.
St. Peter's Square - Part of Vatican City, this square created by Bernini is considered one of the loveliest squares in the world. Twin Doric colonnades topped with statues of various saints and martyrs flank either side of the square. In the center stands an 84-foot obelisk, brought from Egypt in 37 A.D.
St. Peter's Basilica - At the head of the square stands Christendom's most magnificent church, which was begun in 1452 on the site where St. Peter was buried. Throughout the following 200 years, such Renaissance masters as Bramante, Michelangelo, Raphael and Bernini worked on its design and created an unparalleled masterpiece. Of special note are Michelangelo's Pieta and the bronze canopy over the high altar by Bernini. The immense dome was designed by Michelangelo.
Vatican Museum - To see this museum's immense collection would take days. As you enter, there are special posters that plot a choice of four color-coded itineraries. They are repeated throughout the museum and are easy to follow. It is a good idea to pickup a leaflet at the main entrance and concentrate on exhibits of major interest. Of course, the Sistine Chapel is a must. Most likely you may have to wait in line to enter.
Sorrento is a town of extraordinary beauty and is known as a popular gateway to Italy's most spectacular stretch of coastline - the Amalfi Drive lined with fishing villages and famous resorts. The seaside resort of Amalfi sits with weathered houses scrambling up steep cliffs. Visitors marvel at its location and its magnificent cathedral. The religious sanctuary of Cloister of St. Francis is worth a visit. The tiny, exclusive resort of Positano has its famous world-class hotel, San Pietro. Excavations of the ruined city of Pompeii, which was destroyed in 79 A.D. during the disastrous eruption of Mount Vesuvius, give visitors a vivid impression of life in a very wealthy ancient city and the tragic end of its population. The Isle of Capri ranks as one of the most beautiful islands and has captured visitors for centuries with excellent climate, spectacular landscape and fantastic sea caverns. Capri has lavish villas, elegant hotels, chic boutiques and quaint restaurants. Museo Correale contains a death mask of poet Torquato Tasso and some special editions of his works, pictures, furniture and porcelain.
Palermo is a city and seaport in Italy on the northwestern coast of Sicily, on the Tyrrhenian Sea. It is the largest city and chief port of Sicily. Many of the oldest buildings in the city date from the period when Sicily was a Norman kingdom and show Arab, Byzantine, Norman, and Spanish influences. Outstanding examples are the cathedral (1169-1185), the Palatine Chapel (1140), and the church of San Giovanni degli Eremiti (1132).
Agrigento is a small town on the Southern coast of Sicily. The beach is wonderful and the small streets of the old town are quaint and charming. Just outside the city, you will find magnificent Greek temples located in the Valley of the Seven Temples.
The east coast of Sicily is considered by many to be its most magnificent. Lovely Taormina was called "the greatest work of art and nature" by Goethe in his Italian Journey. Situated above the Ionian Sea with Mount Etna as a spectacular backdrop, this storybook town of sculpted gardens, stately palaces and ancient monuments is easily one of Sicily’s most striking sites. There is much to see and do here; the main attractions in Taormina are seen on foot. Incredible vistas are available from Taormina's Public Gardens which are filled with exotic flowers and plants. In Giardini-Naxos, close to the pier, the Bourbon fort contains a fine museum, Museo Archaeologico. The entrance is via a garden bisected by an ancient lava flow.
Destroyed several times by eruptions from Mt Etna and an earthquake in 1693, this busy port, situated along the northeast coast of Sicily, on the Gulf of Catania, is now graced by wide boulevards, lush parks and spacious piazzas. Choose from the medieval power of the 11th-century cathedral and the Castello Ursino, the Baroque fantasy of San Nicolo, or return to the ancient origins of the city with a visit to the Greek theater. Just a short drive up the coast are the Greek glories of Taormina, with unforgettable views of Mt. Etna.
|Departure dates||From||Until||From price|
|Prices start at||$2,599pp|
|Number of nights||10|
|Air city||Featured offer is land only. Call us for low airfares from your city!|
|Remarks||All prices are per person, land only, based on double occupancy, and are subject to change based on availability.
Hotel Availability: All packages are subject to availability at time of booking. Hotels that are on request may not be available and a comparable alternate will be offered.Please Note: The hotels listed on the escorted tours may be subject to change up until 07 days prior to departure. City Taxes are not included.
A city tax on hotel stays may be charged and collected directly from you at the time of checkout. These taxes vary by hotel category and city, and may change at any time based on local legislation.
All fares are quoted in US Dollars.
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