Italy: Cultural Capitals | Small Group Italy Tour from Australia

You are here

Overview

Being an heir to the world's greatest Empires, Italy is well blessed with historical and cultural riches. In fact, it might easily be the number one destination on the entire planet for a cultured traveler, and deservedly so! From breathtaking architectural compositions of the Renaissance to ancient Roman ruins to a never-ending variety of restaurants, bars, and shopping - your small group tour to Italy guarantees dozens of life-lasting memories!

Tour type:
Small group tour
Tour rating:
4.87 / 5, Based on
  • BEST HOTELS
  • 4-star centrally located hotels:
    8 nights
  • BEST CONNECTIONS
  • Private airport/railway station transfers
    2 train rides between cities
  • BEST SIGHTSEEING
  • 3 guided walking city tours
    1 guided city tour with private transportation
    8 guided visits to sights and museums
  • MEALS
  • 8 breakfasts
    Wine tasting

Day-by-Day

Day 1
Arrival in Venice

Welcome to Venice - one of the most charming cities of Italy. Upon arrival, you are met by your private driver at the airport, who transfers you to the hotel for the check-in.

The rest of the day is at your own leisure to relax after the trip.

No meals included.

  • Pre-tour extension available: we recommend to begin your journey with an exploration of Milan. Contact your travel specialist for details.
Day 2
Sightseeing in Venice

After breakfast at the hotel, meet your private guide in the lobby and enjoy a wonderful walking city tour of all the must-see places of Venice.

We’ve carefully chosen the stops on this tour to give you a real insight into the city. You see the Rialto Bridge (and Rialto fish market), walk past the quiet streets, peaceful canals and go beyond the areas that visitors usually see. This is where Venice is hiding its best architecture and secret stories – and that’s what we’re out to explore.

Among many sights you discover are the iconic St. Mark's Basilica, where you see the astonishing Pala D'Oro altar. You go up to Loggia dei Cavalli to enjoy the best panoramic views of St. Mark's Square.

After the tour return to your hotel and have the rest of the day at leisure or may go on an optional gondola ride.

  • Optional tour: Gondola Ride, Venice

Breakfast is included.

Day 3
Free Day in Venice, Train to Florence

The first half of the day is free for you to enjoy and explore Venice on your own. Alternatively, you can take one of the short optional day trips to nearby places.

  • Optional tour: Trip to Murano and Burano Islands
    Located in the Venetian lagoon, Burano Island is famous for its lace making production and Murano is well-known for its glass blowing traditions.

In the afternoon at 4 pm your private driver picks you up from the hotel and transfers you to the railway station. Upon arrival to Florence in about 2 hours you are taken to your downtown hotel for check-in. The rest of the evening is free.

Breakfast is included.

Day 4
Florence Sightseeing

After breakfast in the hotel, meet with your private guide and go on a comprehensive walking tour of Florence's highlights.

Today's program includes exploration of the Piazza del Duomo with a visit to the Baptistery dedicated to St. John the Baptist. Your ticket to the Grande Museo del Duomo allows you to visit the other magnificent monuments of Piazza del Duomo in your free time within 72 hours: the Cathedral itself, the Dome and its famous Bell Tower. 

As you proceed to the main square of the city - Piazza della Repubblica - you pass by the touristic area of the Strozzi Palace a bustling shopping street, via Tornabuoni.

Then you enter in Oltrarno where you see numerous local craftsmen shops and beautiful Santo Spirito Church and Convent, built for the Agostinian monks. In this very part of the city you can find the first official work of Michelangelo dating back to the age when he was 17 years old. We also visit the Galleria dell'Accademia to see the famous Michelangelo's statue David as well before ending the tour on the Ponte Vecchio.

After the tour you return to your hotel and enjoy evening at your own leisure.

Breakfast is included.

Day 5
Optional Cooking Class & Evening Wine Tasting

Today is free for you to savor magnificent Florence on your own or join our carefully planned optional tour.

  • Optional tour: Market tour and cooking class
    Enjoy a morning small group tour of the Mercato Centrale with some tastings followed by a cooking class where you learn to make the real Italian food.

In the evening meet your fellow travelers for a wine tasting organized for your small group. Enjoy a tasting of 3 different wines selected by the sommelier and paired with snacks.

Breakfast and wine tasting included.

Day 6
Highlights of Rome & Colosseum


Following breakfast in your hotel, you check out and meet your private driver for a transfer to the railway station. An hour and a half later you arrive in Rome. Your driver meets you and takes you to your downtown hotel where you meet with your private guide and embark on a tour to discover the famous ancient treasures of the Eternal City.
 

You have a taxi transfer to Rome's hallmark site - the Colosseum. Originally known by the name of Flavius amphitheater, it was the biggest and most imposing building of its kind in the Roman world, designed as an arena for the fights of Roman gladiators and could hold up to 70 thousand spectators.


After touring Colosseum you proceed with a walking city tour to see the most famous attractions and hidden treasures of the Eternal City. You see the Spanish Steps, the Trevi Fountain, Pantheon, Piazza Navona, the famous Fountain of the Four Rivers, as well as witness the masterpieces by Bernini, Borromini, and many others.



After the tour, your guide takes you back to the hotel and you have the evening at leisure.

Breakfast is included.

Day 7
Vatican Sightseeing

In the morning after breakfast, you meet your guide and walk to a walled enclave and the world’s smallest independent state - Vatican*. When inside the Vatican, you visit private apartments of Julius II, Pinecone Courtyard, Gallery of the Maps, Gallery of the Tapestries and Gallery of Candelabra.


Next, you proceed to the Sistine Chapel, where you have enough time to admire Michelangelo's famous frescoes and learn about the intense relationship between Pope Julius II and Michelangelo that drove the artist to create the greatest work of art the world has ever known.


Your tour continues in the vast open spaces of St. Peter’s Basilica where you see a stunning Pieta - a world-famous work of Renaissance sculpture by Michelangelo, and Bernini's impressive Papal Canopy, a legacy left to the Basilica by the Barberini family.


The ending point of your tour is in St. Peter’s Square, where you can admire Michelangelo's Dome and the gorgeous colonnades designed by Bernini. 


After the tour, you enjoy a leisurely walk back to your hotel and have the rest of the day at leisure to enjoy the beauty of Rome on your own.


  • Please note: the Vatican is a sacred religious site thus the dress code for visiting it is applied just as when you visit any church in Italy: no shorts – no uncovered knees and shoulders, no backpacks.

Breakfast is included.

Day 8
Free Day in Rome

Today is reserved for you to explore and enjoy Rome on your own. After breakfast you can do some independent sightseeing, shop for souvenirs or have a good rest.

We suggest visiting the Opera Theater, the Modern Art Gallery - Galleria nazionale d'arte or the Galleria Borghese or joining our carefully planned optional tour.

  • Optional tour: Catacombs of Rome
    Discover a layer of Roman history! Explore one of the Eternal City’s underground catacombs and burial chambers, unfolding millennia of history among tombs and inventive handmade memorials hidden deep underneath the city.
  • Optional tour: Tivoli Tour: Hadrian’s Villa & Villa d’Este
    If you have a free day in Rome or would like to extend your stay by one more day we invite you to set off on an incredible 6-hour tour from Rome to Tivoli with a private guide and driver.

Breakfast is included.

Day 9
Departure from Rome

This is the last day of your amazing tour to Italy! After breakfast your driver meets you at the hotel lobby and takes you to the airport for your flight back home. We wish you a safe flight and hope to work on your future vacations!

Breakfast is included.

  • Recommended extension: If you would like to extend your Italian vacation, continue exploring its wonders with our extension to Naples or the Amalfi coast. Contact your specialist for details.

Included

8 nights at centrally-located 4-star hotels

  • Hand picked hotels
  • Best value rooms
  • Restaurant
4-star accommodation at top hotels

Always included:

  • Best location for sightseeing
  • Breakfasts
  • All taxes and fees

What's included
  • Centrally located 4-star hotel accommodation in Venice, Florence & Rome;
  • Delicious breakfast at your hotels;
  • Private driver pick-up and transfer services;
  • Regular class railway tickets Venice - Florence & Florence - Rome;
  • Sightseeing tours with private professional English-speaking guides in Venice, Florence, Rome; Day-trip to Pisa & Lucca;
  • Murano & Burano day-trip;
  • Day-trips at your choice;
  • All tourist fees & taxes;
  • Emergency line support during the trip.

Not Included: flights, personal expenses.

Tour highlights
  • Intimate group size of up to only 14 travellers;
  • Professional local guides;
  • 1st class high-speed train transportation between cities;
  • Private arrival and departure transfers;
  • Carefully planned optional tours and extensions;
  • Guided visit to the oldest open-air Rialto market in Venice;
  • Guided tour inside Florence Baptistery and Grande Museo del Duomo;
  • Comprehensive city tour of Rome with guided tours inside Colosseum and Vatican City;
  • Relaxed pace with at least a 2-nights stay in each city with sufficient time to immerse yourself in the local culture.
What to Know
  • You can expect to find some shops and restaurants closed from 1-4 p.m. as it is "Riposo" time, Italy’s midday siesta. Most places will be also closed on Sundays
  • Most restaurants won’t open until 7 p.m. or later
  • Tipping in restaurants is included in the bill, the cover charge is called ”coperto”. A charge from $1 to $3 will be noted on the menu.
  • Make sure you have coins, in Italy you will be typically charged from 1 to 2 Euros to enter a public restroom

Dates & Rates

Dates
Mar 20
Mar - 28, 2019
Apr 12
Apr - 20, 2019
Apr 17
Apr - 25, 2019
May 15
May - 23, 2019
Jun 19
Jun - 27, 2019
Jul 17
Jul - 25, 2019
Sep 4
Sep - 12, 2019
Sep 11
Sep - 19, 2019
Oct 9
Oct - 17, 2019
Nov 6
Nov - 14, 2019
Friends trip: 4+ travelers
$3,053
deposit
$611
$3,053
deposit
$611
$3,053
deposit
$611
$3,053
deposit
$611
$3,053
deposit
$611
$3,053
deposit
$611
$3,053
deposit
$611
$3,053
deposit
$611
$3,053
deposit
$611
$3,053
deposit
$611
Two travelers: double occupancy
$3,253
deposit
$651
$3,253
deposit
$651
$3,253
deposit
$651
$3,253
deposit
$651
$3,253
deposit
$651
$3,253
deposit
$651
$3,253
deposit
$651
$3,253
deposit
$651
$3,253
deposit
$651
$3,253
deposit
$651
Single traveler
$4,723
deposit
$945
$4,723
deposit
$945
$4,723
deposit
$945
$4,723
deposit
$945
$4,723
deposit
$945
$4,723
deposit
$945
$4,723
deposit
$945
$4,723
deposit
$945
$4,723
deposit
$945
$4,723
deposit
$945
Dates
Mar 20
Mar - 28, 2019
Apr 12
Apr - 20, 2019
Apr 17
Apr - 25, 2019
May 15
May - 23, 2019
Jun 19
Jun - 27, 2019
Jul 17
Jul - 25, 2019
Sep 4
Sep - 12, 2019
Sep 11
Sep - 19, 2019
Oct 9
Oct - 17, 2019
Nov 6
Nov - 14, 2019
Friends trip: 4+ travelers
$3,053
deposit
$611
$3,053
deposit
$611
$3,053
deposit
$611
$3,053
deposit
$611
$3,053
deposit
$611
$3,053
deposit
$611
$3,053
deposit
$611
$3,053
deposit
$611
$3,053
deposit
$611
$3,053
deposit
$611
Two travelers: double occupancy
$3,253
deposit
$651
$3,253
deposit
$651
$3,253
deposit
$651
$3,253
deposit
$651
$3,253
deposit
$651
$3,253
deposit
$651
$3,253
deposit
$651
$3,253
deposit
$651
$3,253
deposit
$651
$3,253
deposit
$651
Single traveler
$4,723
deposit
$945
$4,723
deposit
$945
$4,723
deposit
$945
$4,723
deposit
$945
$4,723
deposit
$945
$4,723
deposit
$945
$4,723
deposit
$945
$4,723
deposit
$945
$4,723
deposit
$945
$4,723
deposit
$945

Map


Reviews

No rating
  • ratingFull
  • ratingFull
  • ratingFull
  • ratingFull
  • ratingFull

I think that no place on Earth can be more interesting to tour than Italy

A million times thank you! Italy is an incredibly beautiful country. I think that no place on Earth can be more interesting to tour than Italy. Venice is the living definition of romance, so stunning with gandolas and canals. The truly Italian feeling and numerous tourist attractions were impressive. Anywhere you turn ...

Read more
  • ratingFull
  • ratingFull
  • ratingFull
  • ratingFull
  • ratingFull

Superb tour to Italy! You really deserve a round of applause

I wasn't sure what to expect from our trip to Italy but my mom and I were very surprised with how smoothly everything went. Only a few minor hiccups that were too minor to even mention. We enjoyed the guided tours because all the views were really great and the buildings so old. The sites were a bit crowded but still ...

Read more

More Firebird Tours reviews

Reviews

Sylvia & Ethan Gale

  • ratingFull
  • ratingFull
  • ratingFull
  • ratingFull
  • ratingFull

October 16, 2016

I think that no place on Earth can be more interesting to tour than Italy

A million times thank you! Italy is an incredibly beautiful country. I think that no place on Earth can be more interesting ...

Read more

Regina Mayer

  • ratingFull
  • ratingFull
  • ratingFull
  • ratingFull
  • ratingFull

October 16, 2016

Superb tour to Italy! You really deserve a round of applause

I wasn't sure what to expect from our trip to Italy but my mom and I were very surprised with how smoothly everything went. ...

Read more

Pat Ottman

  • ratingFull
  • ratingFull
  • ratingFull
  • ratingFull
  • ratingFull

October 16, 2016

Attention to detail was outstanding - Essence of Northern Italy, April 2017

Everything was perfect. Would certainly use Firebird Tours again and have recommended to friends and family. Attention to ...

Read more

More Firebird Tours reviews