We were a group of four adults who were interested in seeing the sights of Italy but also exploring the food and wines of the different regions. Our travel agency worked with us to plan such a trip within the budget we gave them. Every day our driver arrived early and was well prepared to follow our itinerary. The van was clean and had wi-fi. Our guides all met us promptly and had fabulous knowledge of history, art and even shopping. We were able to add a visit to Pisa through the company, during our time in Florence, when we realized we were so close and had missed adding it to our original itinerary. The hotels were all 4 star and some were in ideal locations. We were very pleased with how smoothly our trip went. We never had a worry that our driver, or guide, would not show up...and how fabulous it that!!
We all have so many terrific memories....Starting in Milan--Leonardo's Last Supper and unfinished Pieta. Truffle hunting near Alba. Our guides at Lake Como. Dinner at our hotel, Gardesana in Lake Garda. Lunch at Bellagio on Lake Como. Relaxing Wine tasting in Piedmont area, Bignelli's in Valpolicella and Tuscany. The Parmesan and Parma ham factories and tasting "real" Modena balsamic. The statue of David. Having a beer while sitting in front of the Duomo in Florence at sunset. The vastness of Tuscany and staying at the castle. The hill towns of Tuscany. Making mozzarella in Ravello. Villages on the sides of sheer cliffs in Amalfi. The Vatican and Sistine Chapel and Coliseum. Earthquakes ...Cooking class in Rome. Recommend staying at Quirinale Luxury Rooms in Rome as well. Great hotel. So much good pasta everywhere. Our driver --he became our friend.
I think we all agreed that we would have liked to spend less time in the car. Hotels closer to the planned stops when we were not in major cities. It seemed that we did a fair amount of backtracking in Piedmont, and especially in Bologna area, and Tuscany. The hotel in Bologna was not in a good area. A stay in Parma area would have been so much closer to our planned outings.
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