Affordable Italy By Train
Here’s an affordable 9-day travel experience in Italy that is a bit different from our other offerings. This independent program via Gate One Travel allows the flexibility to explore on your own, with YMCA Alumni friends and travel-wise member hosts. The tour includes flights from New York to Rome (other departure cities available) and seven nights' accommodations in four-star hotels. Enjoy two nights each in magnificent Florence and romantic Venice and three nights in Rome, The Eternal City. Your transportation between cities is via high- speed train and your seats are reserved. There is an included sightseeing tour of each city and many options to book others. Note that this tour is unescorted by a professional tour guide and you will need to handle your own baggage (pack light). Here’s an opportunity to travel at a very affordable price – perhaps it's your first European tour – that is ideal for foodies, wine and art lovers and sightseers.
*Exact dates and prices for this trip cannot be set until early summer. Interested? Just click to the GO TRAVEL form below and fill it out. You will be contact when it is open for registration.
Day 1: Depart for Italy
Day 2: Venice -- Arrive in glorious Venice with its astonishing treasures and transfer independently to your hotel. Spend the rest of the day at leisure in this city built on over a hundred small islands and connected by 400 bridges. Overnight in Venice.
Day 3: Venice – Meet your guide at the Santa Lucia Train Station to begin a morning walking and orientation tour of Venice. Start with a boat ride to the Island of Murano and witness a glass blowing demonstration. Return to Venice, beginning with an orientation of St. Mark's Square, including the Golden Basilica of San Marco, the Doge's Palace, the Bell and Clock Towers. Proceed to Santa Maria Formosa Square and Campo SS. Giovanni e Paolo. Then, return to St. Mark's Square through the Mercerie, a series of interconnecting streets -- the main shopping corridor of Venice. Consider an optional gondola tour with music later in the day or evening. Overnight in Venice.
Day 4: Florence -- Travel to Florence, birthplace of the Renaissance, by high-speed rail. After check-in, begin your walking tour of Florence in the open-air art museum. Admire the statues of the Loggia dei Lanzi, the Palazzo Vecchio before continuing to the splendid Ponte Vecchio. Walk to the magnificent Duomo, celebrated for its dome designed by Brunelleschi, and view the Baptistery's renowned "Gates of Paradise" by Ghiberti. Florence is indeed the center of the world's finest art and architecture. Overnight in Florence.
Day 5: Florence -- Spend the entire day exploring Florence on your own, or choose to join the optional tour of the Accademia Gallery, where Michelangelo's David is housed. In the afternoon, perhaps participate in the optional half-day Chianti tour. Journey to Chianti region that is famous for is quaint villages, rolling hills, and vineyards. Tour two wineries and enjoy wine tastings Afterward, travel to Greve in Chianti, one of the most renowned Chianti Villages. Overnight in Florence.
Day 6: Rome -- Today, travel via high-speed rail to Rome, the astonishing city built on seven hills. After check-in, the rest of the day is at leisure. Enjoy the ancient Roman architecture or dive into the sumptuous culinary delights which abound citywide. Overnight in Rome.
Day 7: Rome -- Spend the entire day exploring at leisure. Perhaps visit the Pantheon, a magnificent ancient temple, the world's best-preserved ancient monument. From here, take a stroll to the nearby beautiful Piazza Navona, to get a glimpse of the famous fountains by Bernini. Find a cafe table on the square and enjoy a cappuccino while you take in the action. You also may decide to join the optional Street Food tour and experience Rome’s culinary culture first-hand. Overnight in Rome.
Day 8: Rome -- Today, join the included guided tour of the Vatican Museums, Sistine Chapel and St. Peter's Basilica, skipping the lines. Upon arrival, your guide will lead you into the museums where you will visit one of the most important art collections in the world. Admire the Gallery of Tapestries and the Geographical Maps before arriving to the famous Sistine Chapel with its great frescoes by Michelangelo. Then continue to the unforgettable St. Peter's Basilica, built on the burial site of Saint Peter. Afternoon is at leisure or choose to join the optional Ancient Rome tour to visit the fabled Colosseum and the legendary Roman Forum. Overnight in Rome.
Day 9: Depart Italy -- Transfer independently after breakfast to the airport for your departure flight
Gate 1 Travel offers a variety of tour packages. We have chosen an independent travel experience in Italy as an affordable alternative to more expensive escorted tours based on numerous requests from our members. Gate 1 Travel’s discount travel packages and tour packages to destinations worldwide provide exceptional value, saving time and money. They take care of details like air travel, hotel and train booking and include an excursion in each city. You can book other excursions as you wish. You handle your own baggage and do not have the services of professional tour guides. Besides the low cost, you can travel with a YMCA Alumni group hosted by experienced international travelers.
What Will It Cost?
Prices for fall 2021 are not yet confirmed but are expected to be approximately $1,300 per person including airfare from New York (other cities are available), high-speed rail in Italy between the three cities and 4-star hotel accommodations in each city. There is an included excursion in each city and breakfast each day. Watch this page as exact dates and more details are firm.
Each Travel Club Tour is hosted by YMCA Alumni members who have worked hand-in-hand with Go Travel to choose and refine their tour. They will be available to you throughout the trip to provide help and advice. Your hosts on this trip will be Jan and Patrick Murphy of the Schreiner Chapter. Patrick is Chair of the YMCA Alumni Travel Club Committee and the Murphys are experienced international travelers.
Email Bob Cook or call him at GO TRAVEL (407) 774-7730 x110. All trips must be booked through GO TRAVEL. Note: All space availability subject to prior sale. Register early as trips can sell out early. Just be sure and purchase trip insurance when you register. Click on the logo to request a call back when dates and prices are confirmed.