Let the legends of antiquity unfold and the beauty along the Amalfi Coast envelope you during your custom tailored tour of Southern Italy. Stand in the labyrinth at the heart of Colosseum once designated for gladiators, sip a refreshing crisp glass of wine in a secluded winery with opulent views of the Mediterranean Sea and discover Greek temples and ancient mosaics on display in a former palace. Embrace the relaxed pace of Amalfi and wander beneath the gilded naves of Rome. Every moment will...
Rome – Introductory Tour
Rome maintains a gilded image as the capital of Italy with a bustling metropolis, alongside the preserved history that rises along the cobbled streets and spans millennia. Your private transfer will meet you at Rome Fiumicino Airport upon your arrival and escort you to the heart of the city amidst the Baroque beauty of the Trevi Fountain and the impressive ancient architecture of the Basilica di Santa Maria Maggiore. After you settle into your luxurious hotel that overlooks a shady tree-lined boulevard, your private guide will meet you in the hotel lobby eager to lead you on a magnificent introductory tour of central Rome.
The Basilica di Santa Maria Maggiore is one of four important pilgrimage churches in the city, distinctive for its history as the only church in Rome to have celebrated mass every day since the 5th-century. The interior apse was erected in the 13th-century and the tallest Campanile in the city, which stands at 240 feet tall, was added in the 1370s. The aroma of myrrh and frankincense continue to fill the interior daily. When the light catches the gold coffered ceiling, the entire nave glows with the first gold brought back from the Americas to blend New World accents with Old World grandeur.
Rome – Ancient History and Vatican City
The morning light washes over the city and glints off of the marbled façade of the Monument to Vittorio Emanuele II. The structure was erected between the 19th and 20th-centuries to celebrate the unification of Italy. After breakfast, your private guide will meet you at the hotel and lead you on an all-encompassing tour of Rome, from the ancient sites along the Colosseum and Roman Forum to the stunning apartments and chapels of Vatican City.
At the Roman Forum, the scent of the ancient earth and aged stone fills the air. The faded white structures emit layers of legend, and you will think of all the stories the stonework could tell if walls could talk. The Temple of Saturn was erected in the 5th-century BC as the first temple in the Roman Forum. It was originally dedicated to an Etruscan god and later adopted by the Romans. The Republic kept the state treasury inside the temple grounds, and eight weathered Ionic columns remain out of the supports of the original structure.
After exploring the ancient grounds, but before your visit to Vatican City, you will discover the Catacombs and Via Appia Antica. The passages at San Callista fill an area of nearly 1,000 feet by 1,300 feet, with intricate chambers of soft tufa that span multiple layers. The aroma of rich, dense earth fills the catacombs, and the air is significantly cooler than above ground. Your guide will lead you through the passageways to six sacramental chapels, each constructed between the 3rd and 4th-centuries AD. The walls contain paintings that depict both early Christian and pagan images, including animals and flowers.
Sorrento – The Wonders of Pompeii
The 16th-century Villa Farnesina demonstrates the splendor of Renaissance Rome under the design of Baldassare Peruzzi and decorated by famous artists such as Raphael and Giulio Romano. The palace hosted princes and popes with meals served on silver dishes to promote the glories of Rome and the wealth of the family. After breakfast, your private transfer will meet you at the hotel and lead you away from the energetic streets of the city to venture south to the Bay of Naples. The sapphire waters of the Mediterranean Sea replace the quiet flowing water of the Tiber River.
Sailboats and fishing boats glide across the horizon before they return to shore at the Naples harbor. You will arrive at the entrance to the legendary city of Pompeii as the scent of lemon emanates from the citrus groves near the ancient city that grow lemons the size of footballs. Follow your guide along the cobblestone paths filled with the scent of dry soil caused by nearly 2,000 years of the ash-covered street. The Teatro Grande was etched into the hillside and engineers used the natural slope to erect the theater with a capacity to hold up to 5,000 spectators.
From the top row, you can see the looming figure of Mount Vesuvius from across the Bay of Naples. At the House of the Vetti, you will find a well-preserved structure once home to two upper-middle-class brothers. The house provides insight into the lifestyle of well-to-do tradesmen who could live as lavishly as the aristocracy. Frescoes decorate the walls, and the row of columns surround the veranda with the original marble décor. The garden has been replanted, which offers a unique perspective of what the house would have looked like if people continued to reside on the grounds.
Capri – Embark on a Boat Excursion
In the morning, the beauty of Sorrento comes to light from the emerald forest that rises along the terraced hills to the sapphire water that splashes at the coastline of the Marina Grande. After breakfast, make your way past the ancient walls first erected by Greek settlers to reach the ferry for the island of Capri. You can relax in the plush seats inside the ferry, or stand on the deck to relish the refreshing sea wind as it brushes against your cheeks before you dock at the Marina Grande on Capri.
After you settle into your hotel, your guide will escort you back to Marina Grande for you to embark on your two hour Capri boat tour with the guides at You Know! Boat Services. While coasting along the island you will notice the cliffs reach a height of 200 feet above sea level and add a dramatic touch to the gorgeous coastline. The homes in the marina line the promenade near moored fishing boats, the facades painted pastel hues against the glistening sea. Your captain will reveal the several amazing grottoes as they illuminate the waters into vibrant colors. You’ll stop along the way, and enjoy a swim in the soothing water of the beautifully blue Mediterranean sea. Continue on and your guides will point out amazing landmarks such as the Faraglioni rocks and Villa Curzio Malaparte as it sits stoically on Punta Massullo. After a spectacular boat excursion along the island of Capri, your captain will steer you back to the marina, and the rest of the day is at your leisure.
Amalfi – Scenic Drive and Village Tour
You will find that the aroma of espresso blended with the scent of the Mediterranean Sea is the perfect combination to wake up to in the morning. The homes along the cliffs of Amalfi nearly glow golden against the emerald forest that blankets the hills. In the heart of town, the cathedral rises above the main square with more than 60 steps that lead to the graceful and intense bronze doors cast in Constantinople in the 11th-century. Your guide will lead you along the famous roadway that connects the fishing villages of the Amalfi Coast for an in-depth view and cultural experience of the stunning scenery and fabulous heritage.
In Furore, you will discover lush trees that overtake terraced buildings along an outcropping of rusty cliffs. The town is home to a small stretch of coastal vineyards often missed by visitors to Italy. Visit a winery estate that covers 25 acres of the terraced vineyards with views of the Tyrrhenian Sea. The constant maritime breeze and rich soil add to the unique flavors of the wine produced in the region. After a brief tour of the estate, your guide will seat you with a view of the coastline to watch the water lap at the sliver of pebbled beach below as you sample a white wine and find that a tropical aroma emanates from the glass with hints of orange blossom.
Amalfi – Greek Ruins and a Mozzarella Farm
In the morning, you will make your way along the Amalfi Coast to venture to the Greek ruins of Paestum. Along the way, you will stop in the seaside village of Vietri sul Mare, famous for its ceramic industry, which dates back to the 15th-century. The bright and elegant designs hang along the facades of the structures that line the streets. Vibrant yellows, greens, and blues glow against the bleached buildings and guide your eyes to the stunning majolica-tiled dome of the 18th-century San Giovanni Battista Church. On the rural streets of Campania, the grassy meadow leads to the soaring ancient figures of the oldest Greek settlement in mainland Italy.
Greek colonists settled the area in the 6th-century BC and today lush grass and fragrant wildflowers grow alongside the three limestone Doric temples. The roofs have gone, but the pillars and platforms remain. The cobblestone roadways lead to the ruins of residential buildings and the preserved Roman amphitheater as well. The magnitude of the Temple of Hera compels you closer as the 6th-century structure was converted to a Christian basilica in the 5th-century AD. The original architects inscribed a dedication to the goddess along with an open-air altar where the devout could attend rites. Before you return to Amalfi, you will stop at an artisan buffalo mozzarella maker to learn the techniques that produce the savory treat and also sample the luscious flavor.
Naples – Explore Bustling Naples
The gentle morning breeze carries the aroma of fresh lemons from the groves that grow along the upper tiers of the hillside. After breakfast, your private transfer will meet you at the hotel and lead you away from the stunning coastline along the Gulf of Salerno to drive once more along the scenic road to the Amalfi Coast. Back in Naples, you will embark on a tour of the historical district beginning with the Piazza del Plebiscito, a public square lined with the pink hues of Palazzo Reale, the vine-covered slopes leading to Castel Sant’Elmo, and the neoclassical façade of the Chiesa di San Francesco di Paola.
Historic grandeur emboldens the piazza and adds layers of majesty to the open space, along with the promises of splendor inside the surrounding structures. You will continue to the National Archeological Museum to witness the layers of history in and around Naples. King Charles II commissioned the museum in the 18th-century, and it includes one of the world’s greatest collections of Greek and Roman artifacts, many of which have been excavated from nearby Pompeii and Herculaneum.
Once inside, the polished marble floors create an elegant atmosphere akin to a Baroque palace. The basement contains a collection of Egyptian relics and epigraphs while the ground floor displays the Farnese collection of Greek and Roman sculptures. After having spent time on the Amalfi Coast and villages claimed to have been founded by Hercules, you will take in the muscle-bound Hercules sculpture, which was designed in the 3rd-century AD. The massive statue was carved from a single block of marble and restored in the 16th-century by Michelangelo.
Naples – Depart for Home
In the morning, the pizzerias begin to knead their dough for the lunch rush later in the day as the lively aroma of espresso filters out of the cafes along the harbor. Fishing boats return from their daily expeditions with nets almost overflowing with fresh seafood. The royal palace façade atop Capodimonte continues to watch over the city as it has since the 18th-century. The palace now exhibits the National Gallery, which contains more than 500 works master artists, including Titian, Caravaggio, and Botticelli. The treasures of Naples and along the bay are monumental, both inside the museums and along the historical streets of the city, towns, and seaside villages. When you are ready, your private transfer will meet you at your hotel and escort you to Naples International Airport for your flight home.
- Discover elaborate ancient artwork uncovered in the historical archeological sites around Naples at the National Archeological Museum
- Stroll along the terraced streets of the village of Furore on the Amalfi Coast to visit a secluded winery that offers a gorgeous seaside view
- Wander beneath the streets of Rome during a guided tour of the catacombs of St. Callixtus along the Appian Way
- Sample the mouth-watering flavors of fresh buffalo mozzarella of the Campania region during a private tour of an artisan cheese factory
- Stroll beneath a gilded coffered ceiling in Rome, decorated with the first gold brought to Italy from the New World
- Wander the intricate streets of Pompeii to discover the magnitude of the ancient city and the preserved lifestyle of the former inhabitants
- Relax in the gardens of Emperor Augustus’s villa on the island of Capri for a unique view of the coastline and islet of Faraglioni
- Stroll along the meadows of Campania to stand beside the tree oldest Greek temples on mainland Italy in the archeological park of Paestum
From the Roman Forum to the streets of Pompeii, the panoramic views of Capri to the ceramic tiles of the Amalfi Coast, your 8-day tour provides charm and antiquity, culture and discovery through the regions of Lazio and Campania. Your immersive exploration begins with your arrival at Rome Fiumicino Airport as your private transfer will escort you to a luxurious hotel in the heart of historical Rome. Your guide will greet you in the lobby and lead you on a magnificent introductory tour of the city to showcase the Baroque fountains and squares, along with the lavish ancient churches that highlight as much of the city’s rich history as the refurbished palaces.
Next day, your guide will take you on a remarkable exploration of Rome’s ancient history. Enjoy an in-depth tour of the Colosseum and the Roman Forum before you follow the trails beneath the city in the ancient catacombs. In the afternoon, you will have a private tour of the rich artistry of the Vatican Museums. Travel to Sorrento the next day by way of ancient Pompeii as your detailed itinerary takes you along the villas and temples, including the newly excavated district that contains furniture from before Mount Vesuvius erupted.
Travel next by ferry to the island of Capri for a day to explore the landscape, old villas, and crisscrossing trails before you settle in the town of Amalfi for the night. Embrace the shimmering waters of the Mediterranean and the gorgeous scenery of the cliffs that line the Gulf of Salerno as you wake up the next morning. You will visit the enchanting fishing villages and boutique towns of the Amalfi Coast, that lead you to a hidden vineyard in the town of Furore. Marvel at the stunning Greek temples of Paestum after you visit the town of Vietri sul Mare, which is known for its artisanal ceramics.
After you explore the ruins of Paestum, you will meet a artisan known for his buffalo mozzarella artisan to learn his techniques as he makes the delicious cheese celebrated throughout the region. Your private transfer will escort you to Naples for a tour of the city’s regal history, followed by a visit to the inspiring National Archeological Museum. Conclude as your private transfer will meet you at the hotel ready to take you to Naples International Airport for your flight home.
$2,195 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.
- In-country transportation
- Some or all activities and tours
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- 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.
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