Customized Italy Vacation Packages: 13 Days in Italy

Vernaza
A 13 day trip to Italy 
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Italy is for romantics! You can't help but feel giddy in a place where people-watching is a sport and sampling gelato is an art form. You can only take life lightly in a country where food matters more than politics and traffic rules are just suggestions. Every day is a surprise. You never know if a spaghetti or a sunset will be the highlight!

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General Information

Photos
Milan Cathedral in Piazza del Duomo, Italy.
Early morning mist across fields in Tuscany.
Sunrise in Tuscany, Italy.
House with vibrant flowers hanging on its wall in Tuscany.
The dome ceiling inside Santa Maria del Fiore in Florence, Italy.
Chianti vineyards at sunrise, Tuscany.
Detailed Itinerary

Departure Dates 

Dates are flexible and customizable for private departures.

Detailed Itinerary 

Day 1 - All Roads Lead to Rome!

When you arrive in Rome, your driver will be waiting for you at the airport to take you to your hotel. Relish the fact that you’re in one of the world’s most amazing cities, a foundation of Western Civilization. Everywhere you turn, there is a monument, fountain, or famous statue to admire—not to mention the people-watching! Everyday life in Rome is also a work of art. Strolling the cobblestone streets with gelato in hand or listening to classical music in the piazza, you’ll experience la dolce vita or “the sweet life,” at its best! 

What’s Included: transfer from airport, accommodation

Day 2 - Walking Tours of the Roman Forum and Famous Monuments (Rome)

Your tour of ancient Rome begins at the Colosseum, where your guide will share tales of gladiators. The Arch of Constantine marks the entrance to the Roman Forum and from the vantage point of Palatine Hill, you can take in awe-inspiring view across these ancient ruins. The tour leads you through the highlights of the Roman Forum and ends at the altar of Julius Caesar, where visitors still leave flowers and candles today. After a delicious pizza or pasta lunch on your own, enjoy an afternoon walking tour of Rome’s most famous squares, monuments, fountains and artists. Stroll through picturesque cobblestone alleyways and discover the enchanting sites: Piazza del Popolo, the Pantheon, the Trevi Fountain—don’t forget to toss in a coin—and the Spanish Steps. At the Piazza Navona, you’ll appreciate a daylight view of Bernini’s famous “Fountain of the Four Rivers,” a triumphant centerpiece of this lively square. Next stop at the Campo de’ Fiori, Rome’s most popular outdoor marketplace. Finish the tour with a coffee stop at Terrazza Caffarelli, which offers a splendid perspective of the historic center of Rome. 

What’s Included: breakfast, two guided tours, accommodation

Day 3 - Travel from Rome to Sorrento (Amalfi Coast)

Travel from Rome to Naples by train and then transfer to Sorrento. Perched above the Mediterranean Sea with its picturesque bays, this sunny village is a popular resort destination and a wonderful change of pace after bustling Rome. Slow down and smell the fragrant lemons in the town’s lemon grove. Sorrento is famous for its lemon varieties used to make a specialty liquor called limoncello. Go for a stroll in the public park, and head to the marina to watch how the Mediterranean waters sparkle in the sunshine. Here you can see spectacular views of the sea and the island of Capri in the distance. Enjoy window-shopping on the lively main street and explore the pedestrian streets in the old quarter where you’ll feel the town’s history. You’ll find ancient buildings and small shrines to the Virgin Mary hidden in the side streets. Be sure to stop into the Romanesque-facade cathedral to admire its ornate interior of marble pillars and beautiful frescoes. For dinner, try local specialties such as fresh fish or spaghetti with clams. 

What’s Included: breakfast, transfers to train station, train ride to Naples and transfer to Sorrento, accommodation

Day 4 - Discover the Archeological Sites of Pompeii and Mount Vesuvius

After breakfast at your hotel, you’ll set off for an amazing day of sightseeing in Pompeii. This ancient city was literally frozen in time after the volcanic eruption of 79 A.D. An important port town of 20,000 residents in Roman times, Pompeii was a lively city with public baths, running water, heated saunas, an amphitheater, a concert hall, vineyards and grand homes. You can still see the columns, porticos, statues, fountains and frescoes of ancient buildings, including an early Christian church. It’s easy to imagine what daily life was like over 2,000 years ago. Citizens would spend an afternoon at the thermal baths, much like a modern-day spa, to get a massage and take a dip in the hot and cold pools. As a sailors’ town, there were many restaurants, bars and brothels. Chariots rode down wide lanes that were washed clean every day. Next stop after lunch is a visit to Mount Vesuvius for a guided walk along the rim of the volcano’s crater. Here you’ll have a spectacular view of the Gulf of Naples, from the Sorrento Peninsula to the island of Ischia. The last stop is a visit to a prestigious cameo workshop, a typical artisan craft of this area. 

What’s Included: breakfast, guided tour of Pompeii and Mount Vesuvio, accommodation

Day 5 - Spend a Day on the Jet-Setting Island of Capri (Ferry Ride from Sorrento)

Sail away to one of the dreamiest spots in the world: the island of Capri. As you glide through the breathtaking scenery, succumb to the mesmerizing beauty of the island’s steep limestone cliffs and the luminescent blue waters of the Tyrrhenian Sea. Capri is called the “Blue Island” because of the intense azure color seen in the waters of the island’s coves and grottos. Hidden in bays and inlets between the cliffs, you’ll find secret beach clubs where you can rent a sun lounger by the water’s edge. On your guided tour, stop at Anacapri to visit the Villa St. Michele, set amongst beautiful gardens with gorgeous sea views. Enjoy lunch on your own at one of Capri’s glamorous restaurants serving traditional cuisine like homemade ravioli caprese, filled with cheese and marjoram. The tour also takes you to the Garden of Augustus, which looks out onto the famous Faraglioni rock formations that punctuate the coastline. In the town of Capri, you’ll see its splendid Baroque church and stop at one of the elegant outdoor cafes. Browse the designer boutiques along Capri’s charming main street, the island’s version of Rodeo Drive. Return by ferry in time for dinner in Sorrento. 

What’s Included: breakfast, ferry rides to and from Capri, guided tour of Capri, accommodation

Day 6 - Scenic Amalfi Coast Drive and Village Visits (Positano, Amalfi and Ravello)

Today after breakfast, set out for one of the most spectacularly scenic drives of your life! Steep cliffs wind around the mountains and drop off to the brilliant blue waters below. After several miles of postcard-perfect views, stop at the blissfully secluded town of Positano, an ancient village with an illustrious past. Clinging to a mountain along the coast, Positano is a panorama of colors with white, pink and yellow houses lining the bougainvillea-covered hillside. Visit the iconic Church of Santa Maria Assunta, with its exquisite majolica-tiled dome, and stroll down Viale Pasitea, the town’s main drag that’s home to a series of hundreds of steps leading to a beautiful beach. Next see the town of Amalfi, at one time a major naval power. Finally visit the glamorous resort of Ravello, once the haunt of Greta Garbo and Jacqueline Kennedy. Sitting like an eagle’s nest high up above the sea, serene Ravello offers traffic-free lanes for peaceful exploration. You can also wander among the terraces of its elegant gardens for a perfect view of the beckoning Mediterranean. Enjoy a lunch of fresh homemade pasta and local wines. 

What’s Included: breakfast, guided tour of the Amalfi Coast and visit to Positano, Amalfi and Ravello, accommodation

Day 7 - Travel from Sorrento to Florence

Today after breakfast, you’ll make your way from Sorrento to Florence. Your private transfer takes you to the Naples train station, and you’ll have a driver waiting to pick you up the train station in Florence. After checking-in to your hotel, the rest of the afternoon is yours to explore this well-preserved historic city, known for its art and culture. The Renaissance began in Florence, wealthy because of its cloth industry, trade and banking. Set aside enough time to stroll past some of the highlights. You could start at the Duomo, the city’s Neoclassical, domed cathedral that is one of the largest in the world. Then visit the Piazza della Signoria, which is filled with famous statues. It’s also a perfect spot for a gelato or cafe stop, people watching or just a break from the scooter-filled chaos of the main streets. Continue along the Arno River as the sun illuminates the palaces lining the Arno, until you reach the Ponte Vecchio, the famous bridge lined with gold and silver shops. You might even shop for some souvenirs! 

What’s Included: breakfast, transfers to and from train stations, train ride, accommodation

Day 8 - Explore a Treasure Trove of Renaissance Art (Florence)

Begin your day with a museum visit that is sure to be a highlight of the trip: Michelangelo’s “David” at the Galleria dell'Accademia, a 17-foot marble sculpture so lifelike it leaves you awestruck! In the afternoon, enjoy a guided tour to Fiesole, just a short drive outside of Florence. This delightful hill town of Etruscan origin overlooks Florence and the Arno Valley, offering the quintessential panoramic view of red-tiled Florentine rooftops and the famous Duomo in the distance. Visit the Franciscan Church of Santa Croce, which houses the tombs of Michelangelo, Machiavelli, Galileo and Rossini. Then you’ll return to the center of Florence and swing past the impressive Palazzo Vecchio, Florence’s town hall. This piazza is designed for hanging out. The beautiful arched 14th-century Loggia dei Lanzi still provides covered seating for tourists. Finally take in the best of Renaissance art at the Uffizi Gallery, whose collections includes the likes of Botticelli’s “Venus” as well as masterpieces by Michelangelo, Leonardo da Vinci and Giotto. 

What’s Included: breakfast, guided tour of Fiesole and Florence including two museum visits, accommodation

Day 9 - Full-Day Excursion in Charming Tuscany (Siena, San Gimignano and Monteriggioni)

Begin your tour with a drive through the rolling green hills of the Tuscan countryside, winding past vineyards and olive groves. Arrive at Italy’s prettiest medieval town, Siena —an UNESCO World Heritage site. Through a maze of narrow streets, tour the old city center and admire the magnificent places until you reach the Siena Cathedral with its ornate, gilded interior and star-studded ceilings. You’ll end up at the Piazza del Campo, location of the famous Palio horse races. Nearby you can find an osteria offering traditional cuisine, such as homemade pici pasta (a thick spaghetti typical of Siena). Visit another UNESCO World Heritage site: San Gimignano. This 13th-century hill town is known as the “city of towers” and is filled with art treasures, such as the “Annunciation” by Ghirlandaio. Finally visit Monteriggioni, a medieval hilltop town untouched by modern influence and completely encircled by fortified high walls. Return to Florence for dinner on your own. Might we suggest a hearty bowl of ribolitta, a local Tuscan specialty soup? 

What’s Included: breakfast, all-day guided tour, accommodation

Day 10 - Wine-Tasting in the Chianti Region

Enjoy a private tour through the Chianti countryside, the picturesque region that extends from Florence to Siena and is world-famous for its red wines. After a short drive through the rolling green hills, you’ll reach a magnificent castle. Here you’ll visit vineyards and take a tour of a cellar filled with barrels of the Chianti Classico wine. You’ll be offered a snack and a sampling of Chianti wines. Following your winery tour, you’ll visit one of the most beautiful Romanesque churches in the area that’s surrounded by greenery and known for its interesting architecture. In time for dinner, take a drive to a charming medieval village in the hills for some real local treats. Savor a typical hearty Tuscan meal as well as with fine wines at a traditional trattoria. The magical romantic atmosphere will take you back to another era and remind you of the charm of being far away in Italy. 

What’s Included: breakfast, guided tour of Chianti region and vineyard wine tasting, dinner, accommodation

Day 11 - Depart Tuscany and Return to Rome

After breakfast, take a train ride back to Rome. In the afternoon, enjoy free time to explore the city. Wander the ancient streets to get into the local culture, or admire landmarks like the Pantheon, the largest dome in Europe until the Renaissance, or Trajan’s Column, dedicated to its namesake emperor in A.D. 113, yet still remarkably intact. You could visit the Borghese Gallery to see world-class Baroque sculpture. What’s nice about this gallery is that they allow only a certain number of people in every two hours; so even thought the time is limited, you’re able to enjoy some very precious art without the crowds you’ll encounter at the Vatican and other museums. For dinner, take a walk over to the Piazza Navona, known for its hopping nightlife, illuminated fountains, street performers and sidewalk musicians. The piazza is filled with restaurants with tables that sprawl out into the square and it’s easy to find a traditional osteria that serves authentic Roman cuisine. Look for the simple dish of cacio e pepe (pasta with pecorino romano sheep cheese and black pepper) or a classic spaghetti alla carbonara. 

What’s Included: breakfast, transfer to and from train stations, train ride, accommodation

Day 12 - Guided Tour of Vatican City and Leisure Time (Rome)

In the morning, take a tour of Vatican City. Visit the museums, which include more than 2,000 rooms of the most extensive collection of art masterpieces in the world. You’ll see Michelangelo’s incredible “Creation of Adam” on the ceiling of the Sistine Chapel and wander through Raphael’s Rooms. Saving the best for last, the tour concludes with a visit to Saint Peter’s Basilica—the greatest church on earth. The basilica’s awe-inspiring scale and ornate decorative details are sure to take your breath away. Inside the basilica, you must see masterpieces like Michelangelo’s “La Pietà” and Bernini’s cherubs. The afternoon is free for you to explore the rest of the city at your leisure. Wander the streets and discover Roman ruins tucked between contemporary office buildings. Immerse yourself in the exciting chaos of the city’s central locations like the Spanish Steps, which is the perfect stop to savor a gelato, chat with locals and people-watch! 

What’s Included: breakfast, Vatican City tour, accommodation

Day 13 - Arrivederci Italia! Depart Rome

After breakfast at your hotel, take a private transfer to Fiumicino airport for your return flight home. Hopefully, as legend has it, your coin tossed into the Trevi Fountain will bring you back to Rome soon! 

What’s Included: breakfast, transfer to airport

Price

Starting Price 

$3,570
This trip is customizable for your private travel.

What's Included 

  • Accommodations
  • In-country transportation
  • Some or all guided tours and activities (dependent on season)
  • Expert trip planning
  • 24x7 support during your trip
The starting price is based on travel during the low season for a minimum of two travelers staying in shared 3-star accommodations. Please inquire for a custom trip quote based on your travel preferences and travel dates.