Grand Tour of Italy
- 21 Days
- From £2,149
- Nine fantastic destinations in 21 days
- The cultural capitals of Venice, Rome and Florence combined with Lake Como and the destinations of the Amalfi Coast and Catania in Sicily
- Return rail travel to Italy via Munich on the way out and Zurich on the return
- Decide when you would like to travel
- Adapt the route to suit your plans
- Upgrade your hotels
- Add extra nights, destinations and/or tours
- Standard Class rail travel with seat reservations
- 20 nights’ handpicked hotel accommodation with breakfast
- City maps and comprehensive directions to your hotels
- Clearly-presented wallets for your rail tickets, hotel vouchers and other documentation
- All credit card surcharges and complimentary delivery of your travel documents
Leave London St Pancras late morning and take the Eurostar to Brussels Midi. Here, connect onto a service to Munich, via Frankfurt. You will arrive in the late evening so you might like to stock up on food for the second leg of the journey in Frankfurt, or enjoy dinner in the restaurant car on the train.
Upon arrival, check into the Courtyard by Marriott City Centre (or similar) for an overnight stay.
Take one of Europe’s most scenic journeys as you cross the Alps through Austria’s Tyrol region and into Italy over the famous Brenner Pass. Glide across the lagoon into the heart of Venice island and alight the train into the bustle of Santa Lucia station.
Take the Vaporetto down the Grand Canal to the Palazzo Giovanelli Hotel (or similar) where you will spend 2 nights.
Spend a full day exploring magical Venice. Gravitate towards St Mark’s Square, the regal piazza that opens out onto the mouth of the Grand Canal and the Venetian Lagoon. Elsewhere, don’t miss the art collection at the Accademia, or a boat ride to one of the other islands in the lagoon, such as Murano or Burano.
TMR RECOMMENDS: Stay longer in Venice so that you have more time to explore this unique city.
After a leisurely breakfast, take a train of just under 4 hours to Rome, arriving in the afternoon. Check into the Empire Palace Hotel (or similar) for your 3-night stay.
Spend two full days exploring this iconic destination and its landmarks including the Colosseum and Roman Forum, the Pantheon and the Trevi Fountain, and the Vatican City including St Peter’s Cathedral and the Sistine Chapel.
In the morning, board a direct train of less than 2 hours to Salerno. Take a short taxi ride to the Hotel Raito (or similar) in Vietri sul Mare at the eastern end of the Amalfi Coast. You will have a 2-night stay here.
From your base in Vietri you will be able to explore this stunning stretch of coastline at leisure. Don’t miss visits to stunning Positano or the lovely town of Amalfi itself, both carved out of the cliffs along the Amalfi Coast.
Take a mid-morning train from Salerno station that runs down the western coast of Italy and right onto the “toe” arriving at the Straits of Messina. The train then runs onto a boat as you cross the Straits, seamlessly connecting with the Sicilian rail network and onwards down to Catania.
Upon arrival, check in at the centrally located Romano House Hotel (or similar) for your 4-night stay.
Enjoy three full days at leisure in the historic port city of Catania on the Ionian Sea. There’s plenty to discover here including a richly decorated cathedral and the Castello Ursino housing a museum of Catania’s history.
For the more adventurous types, it’s possible to take in a tour to Mount Etna, the tallest active volcano in Europe. Jeep safaris and trekking tours are also possible. Ask one of the team for details.
Board a direct train from Catania to Naples, arriving in the afternoon. Check into the Grand Hotel Parker’s (or similar), for an overnight stay on a quiet hilltop overlooking Mount Vesuvius and the Bay of Naples.
Naples is one of the oldest cities in the world with plenty of attractions to discover. No visit here would be complete without trying a slice of pizza in the city where the pizza was born!
Take a short train journey from Naples to Florence, the stunning capital of Tuscany, and check into the Hotel Berchielli (or similar) for a 3-night stay. Explore the UNESCO World Heritage listed historic centre and famous sights including the magnificent cathedral and the Boboli Gardens.
Take a memorable day trip to Pisa and the Cinque Terre, a collection of pastel-coloured villages dotted along the Ligurian coastline.
Travel from Florence to beautiful Lake Como via an easy platform change in Milan. Upon arrival, check in for 3 nights at the Barchetta Excelsior Hotel (or similar), located right on the waterfront.
Spend your two full days exploring the pretty town of Como, or head to the pier where you can board boats to a range of destinations up and down the lake. Visit Cernobbio and its famous millionaires’ villas, or the smaller resorts of Moltrasio or Faggeto Lario for an authentic Lake Como experience.
Your grand tour of Italy draws to a close today as you travel from Lake Como to Zurich for your final night. Take a scenic journey through the Gotthard Pass, high in the Alps.
Arrive into Zurich and check into the conveniently located Hotel Adler (or similar) for an overnight stay. Enjoy an evening strolling the lakeside promenade or wandering through the cobbled streets of the Old Town.
After breakfast in your hotel, return to the station and take a high-speed train from Zurich to Paris. Here, transfer to the Gare du Nord where you will board your Eurostar back to the UK.
Typical hotels on this itinerary
Conveniently situated just 5 minutes’ walk from Munich’s main station and 10 minutes’ walk from the historical centre, the Courtyard by Marriott Munich City Centre offers comfortable, convenient accommodation with modern interiors. In-house dining is available at the Oleo Pazzo, a Mediterranean bistro.
With panoramic views over the Grand Canal, Hotel Palazzo Giovanelli dates back to the 16th century. St Mark’s Square is just a few stops away on the water bus. This former palace has been home to the Doge of Venice, and Mozart’s family. The spacious lounges feature Murano-glass chandeliers and elegant Italian furniture.
Set between Via Veneto and Piazza Barberi in a restored 19th-century palazzo formerly owned by a noble family, this upscale hotel features refined rooms decorated in a classic style along with marble bathrooms. Highlights include a Mediterranean restaurant, piano bar, attractive courtyard, and fitness centre.
Set on a hill overlooking the Mediterranean, this superb 5-star property is perfect for exploring the eastern Amalfi Coast, while maintaining good access to the main transport links in nearby Salerno. The ExPure Spa features Turkish hammam and sauna, while guests also appreciate the 2 outdoor pools with sea views.
Housed in an 18th-century aristocratic building in Catania’s baroque area, the 50-room Romano House Hotel is a firm favourite with guests who appreciate the culture and history of Sicily. Il Riccio restaurant serves traditional Sicilian dishes and there is an extensive cocktail list at the hotel’s impressive and chic bar.
This stately 19th-century hotel overlooks the Bay of Naples and features period rooms and marble bathrooms. Upgraded rooms have balconies with city or ocean views. Facilities include a rooftop restaurant and bar with panoramic sea views, a fitness room, and a spa with a hammam, sauna and hot tub.
In a fabulous position overlooking the River Arno and the Ponte Vecchio, the Hotel Berchielli is the perfect base for a first visit to Florence. Rooms at the hotel are soundproofed and air-conditioned, with antique decoration and complimentary Wi-Fi access. There is also an American style bar where guests can enjoy a coffee or a cocktail.
Overlooking Piazza Cavour on the shore of Lake Como, this modern hotel offers elegant rooms with free Wi-Fi, flat-screen TVs and minibars. Some rooms have lake views and/or balconies. Guests can enjoy fine regional cuisine at the in-house restaurant, Bistro.
The Hotel Adler is situated in the Niederdorf Old Town area of Zurich and occupies a building dating back to the 16th century. Bedrooms are decorated in classic Swiss style with complimentary Wi-Fi and soft drinks. The hotel also boasts a traditional Swiss restaurant.