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2017  ITALY  TOUR  ITINERARY


Day 1: Tuesday, October 17th

Depart USA for Italy

Depart Philadelphia International Airport (PHL) on Lufthansa Airlines to Milan Airport (MXP) (with connecting flight in Frankfurt) and begin your 2017 tour of Italy with the City Rhythm Orchestra!
 


Day 2: Wednesday, October 18th

Santa Margherita Ligure – The Italian Riviera

Upon morning arrival in Milan, you will meet your guide and travel by private deluxe coach to the “picture perfect” fishing town of Santa Margherita, with its lovely palm laden harbor in the heart of the Gulf of Tigullio.  After check-in at the charming Hotel Lido Palace, there will be a walking orientation tour.   Enjoy shopping and lovely cafes throughout the village, and visit the historic 16th-century castle and 17th-century Basilica.  Later there will be a welcome dinner and music by the City Rhythm Orchestra. 

(Includes: Tour of Santa Margherita, Dinner, Music)


Day 3: Thursday, October 19th

Portofino, Camogli, San Fruttuoso – Magnificent Seaside Villages

After breakfast, take a short bus ride to Camogli on the Gulf of Paradise.  Enjoy free time in this enchanting seaside village characterized by highly-stacked, vivaciously-painted houses, then board the local ferry for a ride along the magnificent Portofino Coast.  First visit San Fruttuoso, accessible only from the sea or on foot, with two powerful attractions: the ancient Benedictine monastery and the Christ of the Abyss.  Continue the cruise to Portofino, one of Italy’s most famous playgrounds for the rich and famous.  Behind all the glamour, you can still uncover the area’s local traditions as you walk the back streets.  The pathway by the Church of San Giorgio leads to a 16th-century castle with a spectacular view of the town.  Enjoy lots of free time in Portofino before returning by boat to the hotel in Santa Marghertia. 

(Includes: Breakfast, Boat Ride, Tours of Camogli, San Fruttuoso and Portofino)


Day 4: Friday, October 20th

Genoa – Fascinating Coastal City

Today you visit the fascinating city of Genoa with its stunning artistic heritage.  Its medieval old town, the largest in Europe, is an intricate labyrinth of alleyways where visitors see 16th century palazzos, baroque edifices, and Romanesque churches. The Columbus Celebration of 1992 inspired a huge project of urban restoration and the city’s revival still shines today.  Food lovers enjoy the traditional “Pesto” and “Focaccia” which comes from this area and a special group lunch is planned.  In the evening there will be a public performance by the City Rhythm Orchestra. 

(Includes: Breakfast, Tour of Genoa, Lunch, Music)


Day 5: Saturday, October 21st

Cinque Terre – The Gems of the Mediterranean

After breakfast travel to Cinque Terre, “the five lands” suspended between sea and earth, and nestled in the cliffs overlooking the Mediterranean.  The towns are among the most unique of Italy and one of the country’s top attractions.  For centuries they could only be reached by sea and thereby represent one of the best preserved natural areas of the Mediterranean.  Spend time in two of the villages and absorb their everyday life and spectacular views of the blue waters.  Enjoy a group lunch there before returning to Santa Margherita for an evening at leisure. 

(Includes: Breakfast, Tour of Cinque Terre, Lunch)


Day 6: Sunday, October 22nd

Canelli and Alba – Historic Cellars and Famous Truffle Festival

Today you begin todiscover the Piedmont Wine Region, one of the most famous in the world, as you drive through spectacular hills of golden vineyards.  Stop in Canelli and visit its vast historic underground wine cellars which date back centuries, and enjoy a tasting of famous Moscato and Spumante wines. Proceed to Alba, nestled among gently rolling hills and developed around a quaint medieval centre where period towers and houses still stand.  Alba is the centre of the world’s truffle business and October is the time of the International Truffle Market.  Experience this renowned event as “hunters” sell these prized delicacies along with cheese, charcuterie, oil, mushrooms, and more.  A wine bar covers the full length of one side of the market, adding to the bustling atmosphere.  Following an afternoon performance by City Rhythm, arrive at the Albergo dell’Agenzia in Pollenzo.  The hotel is situated in the beautiful restructured neo-Gothic estate of King Carlo Alberto Savoy and contains historical wine cellars and the Wine Bank, a special institution housing the most prestigious wine of Italy.  Enjoy dinner at the hotel restaurant to savour local traditional dishes. 

(Includes: Breakfast, Tasting at Canelli Wine Cellars, Alba Truffle Market, Music, Dinner)


Day 7: Monday, October 23rd

Barbaresco and Asti – Heart of the Piemonte Wine Region

Tour the Wine Bank housed in the hotel before continuing your journey in Piemonte.  See the pretty village of Neive and visit Barbaresco with its medieval panoramic tower and views over the vineyards.  Enjoy a country style lunch hosted by a local family with music by the City Rhythm Orchestra.  In the afternoon you reach the town of Asti and visit its historic center rich in medieval monuments and an exquisite cathedral.  It is also home of the great Barbera d’Asti wine and sparkling Asti Spumante.  Return to the hotel and an evening at your leisure. 

(Includes: Breakfast, Tour of Barbaresco and Asti, Country Lunch, Music)


Day 8: Tuesday, October 24th

Torino – Baroque Jewel and Royal Sophistication

After breakfast, begin a full day in the wonderful city of Turin, Italy’s first capital and a refined jewel of both baroque architecture and contemporary style.  The walking tour brings you to the city’s most fascinating sights down the fashionable Via Garibaldi and its elegant shops to the opulent Palazzo Reale and Palazzo Madama,  the Piazza S. Carlo punctuated by the matching facades of the churches of Santa Cristina and San Carlo, Piazza Carignano, and the Cathedral of San Giovanni Battista which guards the Holy Shroud of Turin.  Enjoy the rest of the day on your own for shopping and exploring.  Don’t miss the city’s symbol, the Mole Antonelliana, which offers a panoramic elevator ride and is home to the extraordinary Cinema Museum.  

(Includes: Breakfast, Tour of Turin)


Day 9: Wednesday, October 25th:   Barolo - The Wine of Kings

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Your last day in Piemonte is dedicated to its premier wine - the Barolo.  Discover the region of the “King of Wines” and “Wine of Kings”, with a panoramic tour through La Morra, Monforte and Serralunga d’Alba. See prestigious castles and visit the namesake village of Barolo with its interactive wine museum WiMU.  Stop at a premier Barolo producer - the Fontanafredda Estate and Cellars.  After returning to the hotel to relax, you will be treated to a special country house farewell dinner and entertainment by the City Rhythm Orchestra. 

(Includes: Breakfast, Tour of Barolo and WiMU, Fontanafredda Winery, Dinner, Music)


Day 10: Thursday, October 26th:   Return to USA

After breakfast and checkout, transfer to Milan airport for return to Philadelphia, with connection in Frankfurt. 

(Includes: Breakfast, Transport to Airport)