Having never used a travel agency before, I wasn't sure the level of service and attention I would receive. I was impressed from the first email exchange with our travel agent who carefully took my initial feedback on likes, dislikes, special interests, etc. Our agent offered an itinerary that hit the mark for all the things we wanted to cover on our trip to Italy. After a few adjustments based on travel and the overall budget, we came to a perfect itinerary for our family. Our agent was very attentive and never minded making the requested tweaks to suit our needs. As we approached the departure date, we received a day by day itinerary to include all of our travel, transfer and tour vouchers. Every page listed contact info and relevant info for that day's events. Despite a six hour delay with our flight from home, our agent was on alert to notify our greeters, transfers and tour guide on our first day. Upon landing in Rome we were none stop for 10 straight days of fun, fun, fun throughout Rome, Florence, Sorrento and the Amalfi Coast. Our day trips to Pisa, Pompeii and Capri were all fantastic. Every excursion and tour guide ran flawlessly and on time. We never had a moment of worry or frustation. As they say in Italy, the trip was Perfecto!
There wasn't one location that we liked more than another. Starting in Rome was perfect. We were in awe walking through the Vatican, Basilica and seeing the Sistene Chapel. And the Colosseum was amazing along with all the ancient structures. Florence was so welcoming. Shopping was fun and taking the pizza and gelato making class was a highlight for the family. Seeing The David statue and our day trip to Pisa and Tuscany were quite an experience. We stopped and had lunch at a private estate in Tuscany that felt like something out of a movie. The lunch was amazing and the tour of the vineyard, olive press and gardens where we picked fresh cherries to snack on was unforgetable. The time in Sorrento was equally fun. Awesome restaurants, friendly people and fun shopping. Exploring Pompeii was so interesting and then the tour of the Amalfi Coast was breathtaking with all the vistas. From Rovello, Amalfi and Positano, each town had it's own unique and quaint charm. The trip to Capri was icing on the cake. Taking the cable car to Ana Capri and enjoying a convertible ride back down the mountain was fun and had amazing panaramic views of the ocean. My son went swimming in the Blue Grotto and was probably a highlight for him. We logged 5-6 miles a day walking all over the country. But, given we had a two gelato a day consumption, it paid off as we broke even on the weight gain for the trip!
There are only two things I would have done differently. The first is I would have given us a down day upon arrival. Even though we made it in time for our first tour, it would have been nice to have had a day to acclimate. We literally hit the ground running arriving at the hotel at 3:50pm, throwing our luggage in the room and setting off with our tour guide at 4pm. We did not stop until our final day. The second thing would have been upon arrival in Naples, I would have toured Pompeii while we were so close as opposed to driving by it to the hotel in Sorrento only to turn around the next day and drive back to Pompeii and then doing the reverse direction of the Amalfi Coast. It would have been better to have driven all the way to Positano on the second day and then drove the coast back to Sorrento. Very minor notations but something if I went again I would have done differently.
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