Heart of Italy & Cinque Terre
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Explore the many historic & artistic splendours of Rome, then head south to experience the true Puglia with accommodation in a traditional Trullo and visit to some ‘masserie’, local working farms where you’ll enjoy a cheese-making demonstration & typical lunch. A tour of the lovely Valle d’Itria rounds out this 7-day Rome & Puglia Tour!
Welcome to Italy! On arrival at Rome airport, you will be met and transferred to your centrally located hotel. Check-in and then set out to begin exploring the ‘Eternal City’ on your own.
Enjoy breakfast and a morning at leisure to explore on your own, before this afternoon’s tour visiting of the three world-famous symbols of Ancient Rome: Colosseum, Palatine Hill & Roman Forum with skip-the-line entrance tickets included. Your tour starts at the Arch of Constantine, the largest and one of the best-preserved triumphal arches in Rome. From here our guide will take you inside the Colosseum, the most famous monument in the world and a main symbol of Rome. Our guide will explain the cruel events that took place there and answer all your questions. After exiting the Coliseum, you will visit its surrounding monuments like the Palatine Hill with the Roman Forum Archeological Area, undoubtedly the most important and attractive one in the world, thanks to its unique historical, monumental & archaeological values, as well as its sublime beauty. Just the views from the Palatine over the Forums or the Circus Maximus would be worth a trip to Italy. You will also discover the House of the Vestals, the various Temples, the Senate House, the Capitol Palace, the Sacred Way, and the Triumph Arches. The tour ends inside the Roman Forum and the remainder of the afternoon and evening is yours to spend as you please. (B)
This morning join us on a small-group walking tour of the Vatican Museums and St Peter's Basilica, and skip the line by booking ahead! With 2000 rooms filled with the most extensive collection of art in the world you will be lead by an expert guide along the history of this outstanding Museum. You will marvel at the sight of the Sistine Chapel, one of the most famous and visited sites in the world. Ordered in the late 15th century by Pope Sixtus IV (hence the name “Sistine” Chapel), it is the most emblematic example of papal patronage during the Renaissance period. Thanks to the genius of Michelangelo, you will have an unforgettable experience. This great artist created the masterpiece painting on the ceiling, The Creation of Adam, as well as the incomparable Last Judgment, on the altar wall. But the Vatican Museums are not just the Sistine Chapel... along with the tour, our guide will show you more art jewels such as the Pio-Clementino halls with the Laocoon and Apollo Belvedere, the Candelabra, Tapestries and Maps Galleries. We will then leave the Vatican Museum and proceed to the imposing beauty of Saint Peter’s Basilica. Its dome was designed by Michelangelo who also designed the plan of the Renaissance church. Inside this church, we will experience the beauty of the world-famous sculpture La Pietà (another Michelangelo masterpiece and the only sculpture personally signed by the artist). And in the meantime, we will discover the originality of another art genius, Gian Lorenzo Bernini. Thanks to him you can admire the extremely impressive Baldachin Altar (in gold and bronze), and the splendid Colonnade in St. Peter’s Square. The tour ends in St. Peter’s Square and you can then decide to stay in Vatican city for the rest of the day, join another tour in the afternoon or to continue exploring Rome on your own. (B)
Following breakfast, make your way to the railway station to board a high-speed train to Bari in Italy’s southernmost region of Puglia. On arrival in Bari, a private transfer will take you to Alberobello, well known for its picturesque houses with cone-shaped roofs and where you’ll enjoy accommodation at one of this typical Trulo. After checking-in, you are free to explore your new surroundings. Overnight accommodation in Alberobello. (B)
Today you’ll enjoy a wonderful experience of culture & cuisine starting with a small-group walking tour of the lovely town of Alberobello, with a visit inside a Trullo. Accompanied by your guide you’ll then tour the local countryside, travelling along rural routes with stops for picture taking, and visit some ‘masserie’ (local working farms) where you will enjoy a demonstration of cheese-making followed by lunch with the family of the 'masseria'. This tour lasts approximately 4 ½ hours and includes travelling along rural routes with stops for picture taking. The remainder of the day is at leisure to relax or explore on your own. (B.L)
This morning you’ll meet your guide and set off on a small-group tour of the lovely Valle d’Itria, which stretches from Putignano in the north to Ostuni in the south & resplendent with vineyards, endless olive groves & dotted with the famous coned roofs of the Trulli. The first stop will be at the small village of Locorotondo known as one of the ‘Borghi più Belli d'Italia’, the most beautiful villages in Italy, and its historic centre & narrow streets make a wonderful place to wander. Martina Franca an elegant town famed for its Baroque palaces is where you’ll have some free time to take lunch on your own before our visit to Ostuni. One of the most stunning cities in southern Italy, Ostuni is famous for its dazzling whitewashed houses & charming examples of Mediterranean architecture. At the end of the day, you’ll return to Alberobello. This excursion lasts 6-7 hours approx. (B)
Today marks the end of your Rome & Puglia vacation. Enjoy a final breakfast before your private transfer arrives to take you to the railway station or airport in Bari for your onward journey. Arrivederci! (B)
Some excursions included in this Rail Tour do not operate daily. The itinerary will be modified to suit.