Picturebook Italy    *alt*

12 days, from £829
Leger Holidays
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Description

A grand tour of Italy's majestic cities and sights - from the beautiful shores of Lake Garda, the canals of Venice, and the cobbled streets of Siena, to the majesty of Rome and the stunning Bay of Naples and Sorrento. And that's all before exploring Renaissance Florence, Pisa's famous Leaning Tower and the captivating Lake Maggiore on this magnificent holiday taking in the best that Italy has to offer. This holiday is part of our GRAND EXPLORER range.

Tour Includes:
* 11 or 13 nights hotel with continental breakfast
* 9 or 11 evening meals
* Convenient local joining points
* Travel by executive coach or upgrade to Silver Service or Luxuria

Itinerary


 Day 1

Local departure by coach or Door-to-Door service, then to northern France or Belgium for an overnight stay.


 Day 2

Continue south to Lake Garda for a three-night stay.


 Day 3 Lake Garda (Sirmione)

A full-day included excursion along the shores of Lake Garda visiting some of the picturesque villages on its shoreline. We travel along the eastern side of the lake where we visit Malcesine, dominated by Monte Baldo, a 2218-metre high mountain. We continue to Garda, the principal town of the area. Spend time exploring the narrow streets of the old village or relax in one of the many cafes. We also see the ancient fortified town of Sirmione, from where you can take an optional cruise around the peninsula, which lasts approximately 30 minutes. Sit back, relax and enjoy the picturesque views of the surrounding area from the lake itself.


 Day 4 Venice

Join our optional excursion to Venice. Venice is renowned for its beauty, architecture and its artwork. It is the world's only pedestrian city, which makes it easy to explore on foot. Be sure to see some of the famous sights such as the Doge's Palace, the symbolic seat of Venetian power and the enclosed Bridge of Sighs. A visit to St. Mark's Square, the main public square of Venice, is also a must. It is dominated at its eastern end by the magnificent St. Mark's Basilica, a superb example of the Romanesque-Byzantine style. Perhaps take a ride on a gondola, with your expert gondolier steering you through the busy waterways of Venice (at own cost) or maybe sit back and relax at Harry's Bar with one of their famous Bellini cocktails, the choice is yours.


 Day 5 Siena

We leave Lake Garda and call in at Siena, a picturesque, Tuscan medieval town, listed as a UNESCO World Heritage site. The Piazza del Campo is one of the most famous squares in the world on account of its beauty and architectural integrity. It is also the place where the famous horse race, the Palio di Siena, is run. Continue to the Fiuggi or Tivoli area near Rome for a three-night stay.


 Day 6 Sorrento

Join our optional visit to the popular Neapolitan resort town of Sorrento, where you can spend the full day exploring at your leisure. If you wish to be introduced to all Sorrento has to offer, then join our optional Taste of Sorrento excursion, where you can combine your visit to Sorrento with a guided walking tour of the town and a visit to a Limoncello factory.


 Day 7 Colosseum

Today you have the full day to discover the Italian capital city of Rome on our included excursion. The Historic Centre is a UNESCO World Heritage Site with wonderful palaces, churches, basilicas, Roman ruins, monuments and fountains. It has an immensely rich historical heritage and cosmopolitan atmosphere. There will be ample free time for you to explore this wonderful city at your leisure. To make the most of your visit, why not join our optional guided sightseeing tour which takes place by coach and on foot to introduce you to the city's wonderful sights, including Piazza Venezia and the imposing Monument to Vittorio Emanuele II, the first king of Italy. We also see the exterior of the mighty Colosseum (entrance at extra cost). Note: Although Rome is a relatively compact city, we would remind you that this is a walking tour, not suitable for anyone with mobility difficulties and we would recommend you wear suitable shoes for the day.


 Day 8 Florence

We leave our hotel and travel to our overnight stay in the Montecatini Terme area, Tuscany. En route we visit the Renaissance city of Florence. There will be time at leisure to explore the endless historic sights. See the shops in and around the centuries-old Ponte Vecchio, or even have your portrait painted by one of the street artists who usually gather in the square next to the medieval Duomo (cathedral). To get the most from your visit, join our optional guided sightseeing tour with local guide. The tour starts by coach and takes us up the hills behind the city, to Piazza Michelangelo. Here you can enjoy a magnificent panoramic view of the city and surrounding countryside. Once you have taken your photos the coach will take you back to the city, where your guide will lead you on a walking tour through the delightful streets of Florence, pointing out the major sights. See the Santa Croce church, the burial place of Michelangelo, the famous statues in Piazza della Signoria and also the magnificent Santa Maria Duomo.


 Day 9 Pisa

This morning we leave our hotel and head north pausing at the beautiful city of Pisa, home to the world-famous Leaning Tower. There will be time at leisure for you to explore all the city has to offer. The area around the Leaning Tower is geared more towards tourists, so you will find lots of small souvenir kiosks selling all kinds of merchandise with the leaning tower motif. Pisa is also famous for its biscotti biscuits and bakeries all through the town sell different varieties. To introduce you to the most important sights why not join our optional guided walking tour? The tour starts at the Piazza dei Miracoli or Field of Miracles. The piazza is a UNESCO World Heritage site and contains the city's most famous sights. The Leaning Tower or Torre Pendente has to be the most legendary of them all. From here the tour will continue to the historic centre of the town including such places as Via Santa Maria and Piazza dei Cavalieri. Later today we travel to Lake Maggiore for a two-night stay, (suitable refreshment stops will be made en route).


 Day 10 Isola Bella

Join our optional excursion to the southern shores of beautiful Lake Maggiore and the lakeside town of Baveno, from where we board a boat for the short cruise out to the picturesque Borromean Islands with their landscaped gardens and parks.


 Day 11

To the outskirts of Paris for an overnight stay.


 Day 12

Return home.


 Day 1

Local departure by coach or Door-to-Door service, then to northern France or Belgium for an overnight stay.


 Day 2

Continue south to Lake Garda for a five-night stay.


 Day 3 Lake Garda (Sirmione)

A full-day, included excursion along the shores of Lake Garda, visiting some of the picturesque villages on its shoreline including Sirmione, from where you can take an optional cruise on the lake.


 Day 4 St. Mark'S Square

Join our optional excursion to Venice with its maze of ornate bridges, weaving canals and elegant Byzantine and Renaissance architecture.


 Day 5 Juliet's Balcony

Join our included excursion to the beautiful and ancient city of Verona. To discover its charms, join our optional guided walking tour, seeing the 1st century arena and many of the fine palaces, churches and monuments which adorn alleyways and squares.


 Day 6 Lake Garda

Spend your final day on Lake Garda, relaxing and enjoying some last minute sightseeing.


 Day 7 Siena

We leave Lake Garda and call in at Siena, a picturesque, Tuscan medieval town, listed as a UNESCO World Heritage site. The Piazza del Campo is one of the most famous squares in the world on account of its beauty and architectural integrity. It is also the place where the famous horse race, the Palio di Siena, is run. Continue to Fiuggi or Tivoli area near Rome for a three-night stay.


 Day 8 Sorrento

Join our optional excursion to the popular Neapolitan resort town of Sorrento where you will have free time to explore and relax. The town features beautiful architecture, many cafes, restaurants and lots of shops for you to explore.


 Day 9 Trevi Fountain

Included visit to the 'eternal city'. Our optional, guided sightseeing tour by coach and on foot will introduce the city's wonderful sights, including the Colosseum (admission is extra), Piazza Venezia and the Trevi Fountain.


 Day 10 Florence

We leave our hotel and en route to our overnight stay in the Montecatini Terme area, Tuscany, we visit the Renaissance city of Florence, which is rich in architectural splendour. To get the most from your visit, join our optional, guided sightseeing tour.


 Day 11 Pisa

Included visit to Pisa, famed for its Leaning Tower. Our optional, guided sighteeing tour is a good way to see the best of this city. We then travel to Lake Maggiore for a two-night stay.


 Day 12 Baveno

Join our optional excursion to the southern shores of beautiful Lake Maggiore and the lakeside town of Baveno, from where we board a boat for the short cruise out to the picturesque Borromean Islands with their landscaped gardens and parks.


 Day 13

To the outskirts of Paris for an overnight stay.


 Day 14

Return home.