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What tour (if any) to take to see Rome, Florence and Venice

Depoe Bay, Oregon
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What tour (if any) to take to see Rome, Florence and Venice

I am researching tour groups for next spring for my husband and me to go to Rome, Florence and Venice. Grand European Tours has the most appealing itinerary. Have any of you travelled with them? If so, I would greatly appreciate hearing your experience. Or recommendations for any other tour you found really wonderful!

Cleveland, Ohio
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1. Re: What tour (if any) to take to see Rome, Florence and Venice

We did the same tour with Globus and really enjoyed it - the hotels were very nice, our tour guide was great, and he was very organized. You want to be sure that your tour covers admissions into places, for example some of the tours do not cover admissions into Vatican City, etc.... We also found that the excursions were very nice - we did a dinner in Florence at a Tuscan outdoor restaurant that was wonderful, and a lunch on the island of Burano in Venice - that was great too!

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2. Re: What tour (if any) to take to see Rome, Florence and Venice

We went in March for our first time in Italy. We didn't take a tour but traveled independently. I like to set our own agenda. If I want to linger an hour in a church we don't have to keep up with the group.

We reserved major train travel to keep on schedule and bought regional train tickets as needed. We also stayed in B&Bs for half what hotels charged.

March travel was easier to do independently since attractions weren't sold out as they can be in the high season. That might determine if a tour is the way to go for you.

But it depends on your tolerance to uncertainty and finances. We spend about $5000 for everything for 10 days in March. An organized tour would have cost $7500 or more for both.

Also group dynamics play a part. We saw tours where all the women talked in a group and the men sat silently by themselves.

Either way Italy must be visited.

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3. Re: What tour (if any) to take to see Rome, Florence and Venice

Like the previous poster, we also did this itinerary on our own. There were eight of us that went to Venice for four nights, then to Florence for five nights, and then on to Rome for 5 nights. We would do it again on our own. Before we left home, we had our tours set up and we had our EuroStar tickets. We also had a couple restaurants reservations. It was very easy to do. We did a lot of research ahead of time (and had an itinerary for each city), but it was much cheaper and we were able to see and do what we wanted.

In Venice, we went to Musica a Palazzo and became part of La Traviata. What wonderful singers! It was magical. We also went to Doge's Secret Itineraries Tour which was very interesting. And at night, don't miss going to the dueling orchestras in San Marco Square. To listen to the beautiful music while being surrounded by the most wonderful buildings. Another highlight!

In Florence, the highlight of our tours was the wine tour with Rebecca - Tuscany Wine Tour. It was an outstanding tour, and we just loved Rebecca. I would highly recommend her to anyone that is interested in a wine tour.

In Rome, our highlight was the tours with Sonia. She is a licensed tour guide and we also loved her. She was our tour guide for the Vatican tour and also for the Colosseum & Forum tour. She made the places we saw just come alive with her knowledge and interesting history.

We did a lot of walking, so whichever way you decide to go, have a good pair of walking shoes!

It was a wonderful trip! You will love Italy.

East Brunswick, NJ...
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4. Re: What tour (if any) to take to see Rome, Florence and Venice

In Florence, please do not miss the "Florence Walk" tour. We loved it. Many celebraties and even Rick Steves recommends this. For 25 euro per person this 3.5 hr tour is a gem.

5. Re: What tour (if any) to take to see Rome, Florence and Venice

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