The dome ceiling inside Santa Maria del Fiore in Florence, Italy.

Italy: The Gold Standard Tour

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Customizable Itinerary

This is a sample itinerary to inspire a personalized trip designed with your travel specialist

Countries Visited


Places Visited

Tuscany, Bologna, Florence, Ponte Vecchio...

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Suggested Duration

10 Days

Succumb to the beauty and savor the wealth of culture on your 10-day Italy tour. This Italian journey sets the gold standard. From gilded palaces and gold-plated art to the golden rolling hills of Tuscany, this trip offers some of the most authentic and luxurious experiences Italy has to offer. It's a treasure hunt for the finest Italian travel experiences, especially in food, wine, art, and natural beauty.

Customizable Itinerary

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Trip Highlights

  • See how Parmesan cheese is made in Parma and sample authentic bolognese sauce in Bologna
  • Enjoy an evening of gourmet food and entertainment at a Renaissance banquet in a Florentine palace
  • Visit an artisan goldsmith workshop, and create your own work of art to take home
  • Taste estate-grown olive oils, and learn to cook with "liquid gold" from a real Italian mamma
  • Visit a medieval castle for a special meal and tasting of the property's prestigious Super-Tuscan wines
  • Ride in luxury when traveling to Florence on what is referred to as the "Ferrari of the Railroad"
  • Enjoy private, guided tours of two palazzos and the famous Uffizi Gallery
  • Stay at a luxurious Tuscan retreat, with onsite vineyards and olive groves
  • Visit the charming and historic towns of Pienze and Montepulciano

Detailed Description

Rich in art, architecture and culinary wonders, Italy is a treasure trove awaiting your discovery. On this special Gold Standard Tour, you will visit the most impressive historic sites and see some of the most important masterpieces by the great artists of the Renaissance. Visit ornate palaces in Florence and turreted medieval castles in Tuscany.

Take a private tour of the Uffizi Gallery to learn about everything from the use of gold in medieval art to the new techniques of Renaissance art that allowed artists to create more life-like paintings. Admire the angelic gold-leaf angels of Cimabue, the almost photographic realism of Caravaggio and the seductive beauty of Botticelli's Venus, with her long and flowing golden tresses.

Enjoy an insider's view into Italy's gastronomic heritage as you visit artisan food producers and estate vineyards. This tour takes you to two of Italy’s most renowned gastronomic regions: Emilia-Romagna and Tuscany, both of which are known for delicious rustic cuisine and local specialties. Sample authentic spaghetti with bolognese sauce in Bologna; then, visit Parma to see the centuries-old process of making Parmesan cheese.

Next, stop at Modena to hear the fascinating history of balsamic vinegar. Go on an enoteca (wine bar) tour in the Chianti region, and sample the exceptional Super-Tuscan red wines: Vino Nobile di Montepulciano and Brunello di Montalcino. Similar to wine tasting, you'll also get to try various extra-virgin olive oils. Each different version of "liquid gold" is produced on an estate property from special types of olives.

The itinerary also includes unique experiences that allow you to immerse yourself in the local culture. You'll take a cooking class focusing on traditional regional recipes. Learn to make pici pasta (a special type of spaghetti) from scratch with help from an Italian mamma. Discover the secret of Tuscan cuisine: simple dishes prepared with just a few fresh ingredients.

The hearty meals of homemade pasta and rustic ribollita will speak to your soul. You'll have a chance to visit an artisan gold restoration workshop in Florence and create your own masterpiece to take home as a souvenir. To truly get into the Renaissance spirit in Florence, one evening you'll be treated to an elaborate, four-course Tuscan banquet at a 14th-century palace—complete with lively entertainment. It's all guaranteed to make for a truly memorable vacation.

Starting Price

$7,795 per person (excluding international flights)

Your Zicasso trip is fully customizable, and this sample itinerary is a starting place for your travel plans. Actual costs are dynamic, and your selection of accommodations and activities, your season of travel, and other such variables will bring this budget guideline up or down. Throughout your planning experience with your Zicasso specialist, your itinerary is designed around your budget. You can book your trip when you are satisfied with every detail. Planning your trip with a Zicasso travel specialist is a free service.

What's Included

  • Accommodations
  • In-country transportation
  • Some or all activities and tours
  • Expert trip planning
  • 24x7 support during your trip

Your final trip cost will vary based on your selected accommodations, activities, meals, and other trip elements that you opt to include.

Reviews of Zicasso's Referral Service

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