Grand Hotel Palatino
Round-trip transportation on scheduled airline.
All breakfasts. Lunch on Day 4. Farewell Dinner on Day 4.
Services of specially-trained passports Tour Directors throughout.
Entrances and activities as noted in itinerary. Special Welcome Reception and Farewell Dinner with passports staff.
The benefits package conveys high-option life, health, and accident insurance, baggage loss and delay, trip delay and trip interruption coverage.
Airport arrival transfer
Rome City Sightseeing: 24-hour public transportation pass in Rome, Local Guide, Colosseum, Roman Forum and Palatine Hill, Vatican Museums, Sistine Chapel, St. Peter’s Basilica, Piazza Navona, Pantheon
Optional Vatican Museums: Local Guide, Sistine Chapel, St. Peter's Basilica
Optional Basilica of San Clemente: San Clemente excavations
Optional Excursion to Ostia Antica by public transportation: Local Guide, Ruins at Ostia Antica and Ostiense Museum
Excursion to the Castelli Romani: Alban Hills towns, Sightseeing stop in Castel Gandolfo to view the Papal Palace, Sightseeing stop in Frascati, Fascati Winery guided tour and tasting
Dinner with entertainment at Le Terme del Colosseo
Airport departure transfer, Depart Rome
Rome is your destination; a wide-bodied jet is your vehicle. Swoop down over the Alps and touch down on the wide concrete runway at Fiumicino. You've arrived.
Settle in your hotel. You'll have some free time to unwind and unpack.
Tonight, enjoy a welcome reception to meet passports staff and fellow group organizers.
Set out on a sightseeing tour of Rome.
A full-day local guide, well-educated and specially-trained on the history and culture of Rome, will accompany your group.
Visit some of the best known monuments of Ancient Rome, including the Colosseum and the Roman Forum. Once the heart of a vast empire, the Forum was filled with extravagant buildings and crowded with people from all over the known world.
Your combination ticket also allows entrance to the archaeological site on the Palatine Hill. Should time allow, you may want to make your way up the hill to visit the site and its museum. This was the oldest residential area in Ancient Rome.
Discover outstanding masterpieces collected for the Vatican Museums since the early 1500s. You will see exceptional statues from antiquity, such as Laocoön and His Sons and the Apollo Belvedere, and stunning Renaissance paintings, notably in the Raphael Rooms, where the best-known of the frescoes is The School of Athens.
Marvel at Michelangelo’s Last Judgment and brightly-colored ceiling frescoes in the Sistine Chapel.
A visit is included to St. Peter’s Basilica, which houses priceless works of art, in particular Michelangelo’s Pietà and Bernini’s Dove of the Holy Spirit.
Visit the Basilica di San Clemente al Laterano, where three sanctuaries constructed one above the other take visitors on a journey back in time. At street level, you will see a 12th-century basilica with outstanding mosaics and frescoes.
San Clemente excavations • In the 19th century, a basilica built in the 4th century was discovered beneath the medieval basilica, still bearing some of its original frescoes. Deeper excavations have uncovered a lower level with a Roman temple to Mithras from the 1st century.
Today, using public transportation, make your way to the ruins of Ostia Antica.
A half-day local guide, well-educated and specially-trained on the history of Ostia Antica, will accompany you.
Ruins at Ostia Antica and Ostiense Museum • Explore the city which was Rome's main seaport until its harbor silted up. Eventually, tidal mud and sand covered Ostia, which laid dormant for centuries. In the Baroque era, marble from its site was used to build palaces in Rome, but excavations undertaken in the 20th century have reawakened the ancient city. Now thoroughly unearthed and excellently maintained, Ostia Antica is a fascinating place to visit. It contains notably the remnants of a synagogue dating back to the 1st century AD, which makes it one of the oldest known synagogue sites.
Your visit also includes the Ostiense Museum, repository of artifacts found on the site.
Today's excursion takes you into the Alban Hills, south of Rome.
Alban Hills towns • The volcanic Alban Hills region, set within the Parco Regionale dei Castelli Romani, includes two crater lakes and thirteen picturesque towns founded in the pre-Roman era of Ancient Latium. They are collectively called "Castles of Rome" because they were later chosen by popes and prominent Roman families as cool places (literally) to establish their summer country estates.
Sightseeing stop in Castel Gandolfo to view the Papal Palace • Head up to the highest point of a town set on a long ridge above Lake Albano. It's said to occupy the site of the ancient citadel of Alba Longa, the mythical mother city of all ancient Latium towns, and, by extension, of Rome itself. Nowadays, its name, Castel Gandolfo, is synonymous with the official summer residence of the Pope: the Papal Palace, or Apostolic Palace, built in the 1600s on the site of one of Domitian's palaces.
Sightseeing stop in Frascati • Explore Frascati, which is perhaps the most elegant of the Castelli Romani towns with its villas and parks. It's also widely known for its production of cheese, jams, and DOC white wines.
Winery guided tour and tasting • Learn about the long history of the property and discover the steps involved the production of fine DOCG Frascati wines on your tour of the winery. Then, sample of a couple of homegrown wines.
Tonight, enjoy dinner with entertainment at the restaurant Le Terme del Colosseo, which is located between the Colosseum and the Roman Forum, in halls with arched ceilings and exposed stone. It offers a variety of Italian dishes accompanied by musical entertainment titled "Roman Fantasy," starring professional singers in costume.
Ciao, Europa! Statistics show that visitors do in fact return to Rome, although it may not have anything to do with coins in a fountain. Race the sun and arrive home later today, eager to share your discoveries with family and friends.
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