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Rome Experiences

As Italy’s capital located in the heart of the country, Rome is one of the oldest occupied locations in Europe. It’s this long and illustrious history that defines the city today, with constant reminders of the people from past times who shaped Rome to become what it is today. Home to iconic sights ranging from the Colosseum and Vatican Museums, to St Peter’s Basilica and the Spanish Steps, Rome is home to countless world-famous attractions. It’s a buzzing and contemporary global city too, with modern creative arts and an inventive culinary scene adding yet more texture to the multi-layered fabric of the city.

 

Select an experience below to find out more.

Basilicas & Secret Underground Catacombs Tour

Guided tour including St John in Lateran Basillica, Holy Straircase and St, Callisto’s Catacombs.

 

Includes

  • Hotel pick up
  • Local tour guide
  • Entrance tickets & headset

 

From£64per person

Discovering Rome by Night

This evening tour introduces you to some of the most renowned spots in the city while the city lights up after dark.

 

Includes

  • English speaking guide
  • Bus travel

 

From£90per person

Exclusive Cooking Lesson & Grocery Tour

Explore markets and small grocery shops, then learn how to make handmade pasta before lunch in an amazing location.

 

Includes

  • Local food expert
  • All ingredients
  • Traditional Italian lunch

 

From£100per person

Borghese Gallery

Visit an art gallery housed inside a glamourous villa and soak up art, architecture and horticulture in the heart of Rome.

 

Includes

  • Hotel pick-up
  • English speaking guide
  • Skip-the-line tickets

 

From£65per person

Exclusive Vatican City Visit

Evening tour to the Vatican Museums, where you’ll explore some of the 1,400 rooms, including Gallery of Maps and Sistine Chapel.

 

Includes

  • Hotel pick up
  • Local tour guide
  • Skip-the-line entrance tickets

 

From£70per person

Archaeological wonders of Rome Tour

Guided walking tour including the Colosseum, Roman forum and Palentine Hill.

 

Includes

  • Local tour guide
  • Skip-the-line entrance tickets
  • Headsets

 

From£47per person

St John in Lateran Basillica

St John in Lateran Basillica

Basilicas and Secret Underground Catacombs Tour

Visit some of Rome’s fascinating religious sights on this tour of the city, which includes the chance to step inside a number of basilicas and catacombs.

This three-hour tour departs at 14:30 and is led by an expert guide, who will tell you more about some of the historically-rich religious buildings and traditions in Rome. On this tour, you’ll visit the Archbasilica of Saint John Lateran – the oldest public church in Rome and the most ancient basilica in the Western world – consecrated in AD 324. Next to the Archbasilica of Saint John Lateran, you’ll also visit the Holy Stairs – a set of 28 white marble steps that are Roman Catholic relics. The location is also a spot where Christians make pilgrimages to.

We’ll continue our tour to the Catacombs of Callixtus – part of a wider 30 acre funerary complex. Created by Pope Callixtus I, these catacombs are most known for containing the Crypt of the Popes, which previously contained the tombs of popes from the 2nd to 4th centuries. We’ll be able to enter the catacombs on the tour to learn much more.

The final basilica on this tour is the Basilica of Santa Maria Maggiore, another of the world’s most important religious buildings. Dedicated to the Virgin Mary, this is also the largest Catholic Marion church in Rome. We’ll find out more about the architecture of the church before going inside and hearing more about the origins of the church and its significance to the Romans.

Operates on a Monday, Tuesday, Friday & Saturday at 14:30. Prices from £64 per person.

 

Colosseum

Colosseum

Archaeological Wonders of Rome Tour

Wander amid some of the most recognisable historic sights of Rome on this tour that includes visits to the Colosseum, the Roman Forum and Palatine Hill.

This three-hour tour takes you to the heart of Rome’s archaeological gems that are unlike anywhere else in the world. Our expert guide will take you to three of Rome’s most historically important sights, with skip the line entrance tickets included.

The Colosseum is an amphitheatre that was built in the centre of Rome under the reign of emperor Vespasian in AD 72. The largest amphitheatre ever built, it is thought to have been able to hold up to 80,000 spectators. Used for events such as gladiatorial battles and Classical mythology dramatisations, the Colosseum was a hub of life in the city. Nowadays it’s the world’s most popular attraction and an absolute must-visit on any trip to Rome. The nearby Roman Forum was another centre of Roman life, and is still surrounded by the ancient ruins of various government buildings. This is where processions, elections, public speeches and criminal trials took place – and it’s as fascinating to visit today as ever before.

Also included in our tour is a visit to Palatine Hill – known as the first centre of the Roman Empire. This is one of the most ancient parts of Rome and is found on a hill overlooking the Roman Forum. Archaeologists here have made incredible discoveries, including evidence of Bronze Age settlements and the apparent birthplace of Rome’s first Emperor, Augustus.

Operates on a Saturday & Sunday morning (not available 25th December, 1 January and first Sunday of each month). Prices from £47 per person. Include hotel pick-up for an extra £13 per person.

 

Trevi Fountain

Trevi Fountain

Discovering Rome by Night

This evening tour introduces you to some of the most renowned spots in the city while the city lights up after dark.

Including walking and bus elements to take you to the best locations in Rome, you’ll visit many city spots that are recognisable to people around the world. We’ll visit the Trevi Fountain – standing at 29 metres high and 49 metres wide – to learn more about one of the most famous fountains on the globe, including which films it has been featured in. We’ll also visit the Roman Forum – said by many to be the heart of ancient Rome – and the Colosseum – the ruins of the oval shaped amphitheatre that once stood in the heart of the city.

Our tour will continue on to Circo Massimo, the Ancient Roman chariot-racing stadium, before wandering through Trastevere. This is the neighbourhood where Julius Caesar built his villa, and is now a buzzing and cosmopolitan part of Rome. We’ll continue visiting the city’s major sights as we pass the former Roman temple of the Pantheon, and then take a stroll through Piazza Navona – a former stadium built in the 1st century AD. We’ll also wander past St Peter’s Basilica and learn more about its dome. We’ll also visit a much smaller point of interest in the locality – The Mask of Truth – to find out more about its origins. We’ll finish our tour by stopping on Tiber Island, which has some intriguing tales to tell, and is connected by bridges to Rome’s mainland.

Operates Every day from 20:45. Prices from £50 per person

Borghese Villa Gardens

Borghese Villa Gardens

Borghese Gallery

Visit an art gallery housed inside a glamourous villa and soak up art, architecture and horticulture in the heart of Rome.

This tour is led by an expert tour guide, who will introduce you to the stories and secrets of Rome’s Borghese Gallery. Found inside the former Villa Borghese Pinciana – a 17th century villa designed by a Flemish architect, the exterior of the building is already incredibly impressive. Inside, the gallery is best known for the Borghese Collection – a range of Roman sculptures and old masters paintings collected by Cardinal Scipione Borghese – the nephew of Pope Paul V. As well as precious ancient Roman art, the collection includes works by artists including Caravaggio, Raphael, and Titian.

The Villa Borghese gardens are as popular to visit as the art collections. These extensively landscaped gardens now form the third largest public park in Rome. Their origins also date back to the era of Cardinal Scipione Borghese, who converted his villa’s vineyards into the most extensive gardens possible. A number of other villas and impressive buildings can also be found amid the gardens, while other points of interest also border the park. These include the Spanish Steps – which were built in 1717 – and the Piazza del Popolo, designed by the architect Giuseppe Valadier. In 1903 the gardens became public property and have been a beloved spot in the city ever since. Your tour guide will take you to these gardens to relay some fascinating and lesser known stories about the green space.

Operates on a Monday at 09:00. Prices from £65 per person. Includes hotel pick-up, English speaking guide and skip-the-line tickets. Alternatively you can join the group at the Borghese Gallery entrance for 09:00, without hotel pick-up, from £58 per person.

 

Gallery of Maps, Vatican Museum

Gallery of Maps, Vatican Museum

Vatican City – Friday Night Vatican Museums and Sistine Chapel

Experience a magical after-hours visit to Vatican City’s most exquisite buildings on this three-hour Friday evening tour.

Your tour will commence at 20:00, when an expert guide will lead you on a walking tour for an intimate visit to some world-renowned sights. We’ll visit the Vatican Museums – home to some of the globe’s great masterpieces of art – and explore the Gallery of Tapestries in particular detail. Pope Leone X was behind the formation of these tapestries in the 1500s which were designed in Rome and sent to be made by the best artisans in Brussels. The Gallery of Maps is another fascinating stop on our walking tour, as these are series of maps of Italy dating back to the 1580s and show a view of the world from centuries ago.

We’ll also visit inside the Raphael Rooms – a series of four rooms in the papal palace that are famed for the frescoes Raphael created here. Known as the Stanze, they were originally intended for Pope Julius II’s apartments. They were incomplete when Raphael passed away and were completed by his assistants.

The Sistine Chapel will also open its doors to us for this evening tour, so you can experience Michelangelo’s work of art on the ceiling in person, as well as soak up the feeling of history in the papal enclave. Finally, we’ll pay a visit to the Vatican Library – one of the oldest libraries in the world with a collection of historical texts unlike anywhere else.

Operates on a Friday at 20:00. Prices from £70 per person. This tour is also available including dinner at the Le Carrozze restaurant from an extra £70 per person (start time 18:45). 

Grocery shops in Rome

Grocery shops in Rome

Exclusive Cooking Lesson & Grocery Tour

Go grocery shopping with an Italian food expert and learn new skills in the kitchen with this hands on culinary experience in the heart of Rome.

We’ll meet at 9:30 to begin our day with a grocery tour of Rome. Led by an expert, you’ll explore some of Rome’s local markets, find out more about the origins of popular produce sold here, and gain tips on what to look out for when buying ingredients to use later in the kitchen. We’ll also discover small, family-run grocery shops in the city that sell the best quality ingredients.

After our time learning more about how to shop for groceries with a culinary eye, we’ll make our way to the cookery school where you’ll enjoy the next step of this food experience. One of the new skills you’ll be taught is how to hand make pasta. A staple of Italian cuisine, pasta is made from unleavened dough, mixed with water or eggs. Learning about the various shapes of pasta is all part of the fun of pasta making too – there are actually more than 300 documented names of different pasta shapes!

As well as watching live demonstrations, you’ll put your learning to the test by trying your hand at making your own pasta too. Pasta making is just part of the process – you’ll also learn about the array of traditional pasta sauces typically made across Italy. At the end of this experience, you’ll sit down to a traditional Italian lunch to celebrate your new skills.

Operates Monday – Saturday at 09:30. Prices from £100 per person.

More Rome Experiences

Sunday Tour & Pope’s Blessing

This tour enables you to see the pope on the traditional day of worship and rest, as well as visit some of Rome’s most enchanting sights in the locality.

This tour sets off at 8:30 on Sundays, taking you on a journey to see the pope for a reading and blessing. First, you’ll embark on a guided walking tour to take in some of Rome’s most famous spots. This includes a visit to the Trevi Fountain, which is the largest Baroque fountain in the city. It was finished in the 1760s and has since become one of the most famous fountains in the world. The fountain stands in front of Palazzo Poli and has the effect of giving it a dramatic frontage.

Your walking tour will also take you past the Pantheon – the former Roman temple with its characteristic columns, as well as through Piazza Navona, which is on the site of a former Roman stadium. The walking tour will end in St Peter’s Square, which faces the papal enclave – St Peter’s Basilica. The pope makes an appearance from the window of his apartment every Sunday at midday when he is in Rome, and we’ll arrive in plenty of time for this event. The pope will give a short speech, followed by the Angelus and then a blessing for the crowd. An important experience for Catholics visiting Rome, this will complete your morning of exploring the city’s historical and religiously prominent sights.

Operates on Sunday at 08:30. Prices from £40 per person.

Vatican City – Exclusive extended Vatican Museums and Gardens

Ideal for those who want to spend some time scratching beneath the surface of the sights and traditions of Vatican City, this tour takes you to all corners of the city-state.

This five-hour tour includes a fascinating visit to the Vatican Gardens – an extensive swathe of greenery in the form of parks and private urban gardens. This area of green space takes up half of the entire area of Vatican City itself. A visit here is a true delight, decorated with Baroque and Renaissance sculptures and monuments, surrounded by stone walls. There is no public access to the gardens, but small guided tours are available in limited numbers.

As well as this exclusive visit to the gardens, our tour will also take us to the Bramante Staircase. Built in 1505, the staircase was built to connect the Belvedere Palace of Pope Innocent VIII with the outside world. Not usually open to the public except for specialist tours, this is another insider look at life in Vatican City.

We’ll also visit the Vatican Museums – as important to the art world as they are to religion. The museums display a range of works from ancient Roman pieces to masterpieces of the Renaissance, by artists including Raphael, Leonardo da Vinci and Caravaggio. The combination of art and religion particularly comes together in the Sistine Chapel, with Michelangelo’s world famous artwork on the ceiling – which has been drawing visitors for 500 years. We’ll also visit the interior of St Peter’s Basilica – the papal enclave regarded as one of the holiest Catholic shrines.

Operates Monday, Friday & Saturday at 08:30. Prices from £99 per person.

 

Espresso and Gelato Tour

This afternoon tour celebrates some of the most indulgent Italian food traditions around the city of Rome.

Departing at 15:30, this two and a half hour tour will take you off the beaten path with a food expert. We’ll wonder through Rome, discovering some of the best spots for espresso and gelato in the city, which includes a number of tastings.

Espresso was first invented in the 1880s in Turin and has now become a stalwart of Italian life. Described as coffee of Italian origin that is pressed through nearly boiling water, espresso is thicker and stronger than coffees prepared in other ways. It has become more than a drink Italians love – it’s a way of life and an accompaniment to socialising. Espresso bars have been part of the fabric of city life for decades, and often have standing space only to encourage patrons to stand and socialise over the coffee drink. On this tour, your expert guide will lead you to some of the best espresso bars in Rome and explain more about the brewing process to achieve the perfect espresso.

We’ll also discover another popular side to Italy’s food culture on this tour – gelato.  A frozen dessert of Italian origin made with milk and sugar, it is distinguished from other ice creams by the fact it has around 70% less air. You’ll learn more about what makes Italian gelato genuinely unique, and visit some of the best gelato shops in Rome to taste the difference for yourself.

Operates every day at 15:30. Prices from £60 per person.

Papal Audience with Pope Francis in Vatican City

An important experience for religious visitors to Rome, this tour involves a short walk and tickets to the Papal Audience with Pope Francis, Head of the Catholic Church and sovereign of the state of Vatican City.

This experience takes place on Wednesdays only when the pope is in Rome, and we’ll set off at 7:15 from Piazza Risorgimento. We’ll embark on a short panoramic walking tour to St Peter’s Square in Vatican City, learning more about our surroundings as we walk. You’ll then arrive in St Peter’s Square in time for the Papal Audience. St Peter’s Square has always been a religious place, as it was kept as open space in front of St Peter’s Basilica. The space was redesigned in the 1600s at the request of Pope Alexander VII, who wanted it to be a forecourt where the pope could give his blessing to the greatest number of people possible.

The Papal Audience is an opportunity for visitors to Rome to see the pope and listen to his teachings and readings. This is mainly in Italian, but it does take place in other languages too, depending on the visiting groups. The pope usually says a greeting in multiple languages regardless.

To mark the end of the Papal Audience, the pope will lead a prayer in Latin. All visitors have the opportunity to recite the prayer along with the pope, which is usually printed on the back of the Papal Audience tickets. Pope Francis then imparts an Apostolic Blessing on the crowd, extending it to the loved ones of those present.

 

Operates on a Wednesday at 07:15. Prices from £35 per person.

Pizza Making Course

Get hands on in this guided pizza making session with an Italian culinary expert.

This three-hour experience starts at 17:00 at That’s Amore restaurant in the heart of Rome. With all the ingredients and equipment we’ll require on hand, our session will start with learning some secrets of Roman pizzas. You’ll learn all about what makes the local way of pizza making really stand out, including insider tips and tricks. It was actually the Romans who are thought to have created focaccia – the precursor to pizza – so it is apt to undertake a pizza making course in the former heart of the Roman Empire. The Romans called focaccia bread ‘panis focacius’ – which they added toppings to.

Although what we know as pizza today was created in Naples, there are still regional differences in the way pizzas are made. In particular, in Naples the pizza bases are traditionally soft, while in Rome there is a preference for thinner and crispier pizza bases.

You’ll learn all this and more in this pizza making session. Get a feel for how to make dough that suits your taste perfectly, and learn what makes the tastiest tomato sauce base too. As well as watching live demonstrations, you’ll be guided through every step to make your very own pizza too. At the end, you’ll sit down with your fellow pizza makers to taste your creations. It’s the perfect way to bring home new memories and skills from your visit to Rome.

Operates every day.  Prices from £70 per person

 

Vatican Museums, Sistine Chapel & St Peter’s Basilica

A tour taking you to the heart of Vatican City, you’ll learn more about this city-state and visit some of the most religiously important buildings in the world.

The smallest sovereign state on the globe, visiting Vatican City in itself feels like a privilege. For those interested in Catholicism too, it’s even more of a life event. This three and a half hour guided walking tour will take you to many world-famous locations.

Our tour will take us to the Vatican museums, which give an excellent insight into Vatican City as a centre of both Christianity and art. The museum exhibits art and artefacts collected by popes throughout the centuries, including unparalleled examples of Roman sculpture and some of the most important Renaissance works in the world. Visitors to the museums also have the opportunity to pass through the Sistine Chapel, whose ceiling was decorated by Michelangelo in the early 1500s. Michelangelo also completed The Last Judgement fresco in the chapel.

We’ll also visit the Raphael Rooms – a series of four rooms in the Palace of the Vatican. Famous for the frescoes decorated by Raphael – it’s easy to see why Vatican City is so revered in the art world for its High Renaissance pieces.

The final part of our tour will take us inside St Peter’s Basilica – famous for its Renaissance architecture and for being the largest church in the world. The papal enclave is the global centre of Catholicism, and it is also said to be the burial site of St Peter, who was prominent among Jesus’s apostles.

Operates every day except  Sunday and religious holidays, at either 11:00 or 14:30. Prices from £58 per person. 

Luxury Dinner paired with Wine Tasting near the Pantheon

Luxury Dinner paired with Wine Tasting near the Pantheon

Enjoy hearing about the culinary traditions and flavours of Italy with an expert guide and sit down to an authentic Italian meal paired with wine.

This two and a half hour experience begins at 19:30, when you’ll meet your expert foodie guide for the evening. Taking place in a sophisticated restaurant housed inside a historical palazzo, the setting is perfect for soaking up the feeling of Rome.

The evening will begin with an aperitif while your expert guide gives you insights into Italian and Roman food traditions. You’ll then enjoy a guided wine tasting session while learning more about Italian wines. Italy is the world’s largest wine producer, with some of the oldest vineyards to be found in the country too. There isn’t a single wine-growing region in Italy – as every part of the country is home to vineyards that produce unique wines thanks to the varying but favourable wine-growing conditions. You’ll learn about the different grape varieties and wines produced from the country’s astounding one million vineyards, before moving on to the next part of the evening.

Following the wine tasting session you’ll sit down to a two-course dinner followed by dessert. The menu is designed around Italian food traditions and seasonal, locally produced ingredients. You guide will tell you more about the dishes, their origins, favourite local ingredients and techniques used in typical Italian cooking. The evening will end with you feeling well fed and full of new knowledge about the country’s culinary heritage.

Operates every day except Sunday at 19:30– unavailable from 1st – 31st August. Prices from £120 per person.

 

Tasting Tour in Rome

Discover some of the best foodie spots in the city of Rome with the help of an expert food guide.

The ideal tour for those wishing to discover Rome’s food secrets, you’ll wander off the beaten track with a local food expert to source and taste some of the city’s best ingredients. During part of the tour we’ll make our way to various food markets in Rome. Your guide will talk you through some of the common and unusual ingredients available for sale, where in Italy the produce originates from, and some of the favourite dishes locals love to make with the fresh ingredients. Your guide will also give you tips and tricks on what to look for when selecting food to buy from markets.

You’ll also visit a number of small, local grocery shops on this tour. They’re places you may not have noticed if you had just walked by, making them rare finds in the buzzing city. With some shops specialising in just a few products, you’ll learn more about local snacks and food traditions, and get involved in some food tastings too.

Those with a sweet tooth are in for a treat, as your guide will lead you to some of the best gelato shops in the city as well. Ice cream with a difference, gelato is a beloved Italian food tradition. You’ll learn more about gelato making, as well as how to taste the difference between different gelato products through a tasting session.

 Operates every day except Sunday at 10:30 or 16:30. Prices from £75 per person.

Rome Tiramisu and Gelato Making Tour

Learn how to make the perfect Italian desserts in this food making experience in the heart of Rome.

This two-hour experience will equip you with dessert-making skills to last you a lifetime. Led by a professional pastry chef and food connoisseur, this Tiramisu and gelato making class has space for just five participants, making it an authentic and intimate culinary experience.

You’ll start by learning how to make tiramisu. This traditional Italian dessert has become a favourite the world over, and is made with finger biscuits dipped in coffee, layered with a whipped combination of eggs, sugar and mascarpone cheese, dusted with cocoa powder. Your teacher will share inside knowledge about how to make the perfect tiramisu, including how to choose the best ingredients, and preparation tips to make the finished product really stand out from the crowd. You’ll enjoy a tasting session of the pastry chef’s own incredible dessert too.

You will go on to learn how to make another Italian favourite – gelato. An Italian take on ice cream, gelato is made from milk, sugar and other ingredients to achieve different flavours. It has distinctive differences from other ice creams that you’ll learn all about. The teacher will show you the fine art of making gelato, including the specific technique to create the right consistency, and freezing guidelines so the finished product tastes mouth-watering. You’ll finish with a gelato tasting session, trying different flavours and learning how to notice the difference between different styles of gelato.

Outside Rome – Tivoli and its Villas

Spend the morning in a pretty Italian town and discover an array of elegant villas in this half day tour.

We’ll depart from Rome at 8:30 to travel east to the town of Tivoli, which we’ll reach in under an hour. You’ll then embark on a tour with an expert guide, who will let you into the stories and secrets of the town full of glorious villas and history-filled streets. Sights in Tivoli include Rocca Pia, the 15th century fortress built under the direction of Pope Pius II during the Renaissance, and Tivoli Cathedral with its Roman bell tower. The Temple of Vesta is a former Roman temple that dates back to 1 BC, and its ruins can be found on the city’s acropolis.

A former Roman holiday resort due to its natural beauty and good waters, this explains why so many Roman villas were built in Tivoli. Two are UNESCO World Heritage Sites, and our tour will take us to both of these renowned villas. Villa Adriana – or Hadrian’s Villa – was created as a retreat for the Roman Emperor Hadrian, as he didn’t like the palace on Palatine Hill in Rome. Your guide will lead you around the remains of this villa complex to relay yet more fascinating stories of past times.

We’ll also visit Villa d’Este, a 16th century villa known for its Italian Renaissance gardens and abundance of intricate fountains. The villa’s interior is now an exquisite museum that you’ll have the opportunity to explore.

Outside Rome – Summer Al Fresco

Spend some time in the rolling hills outside of Rome on this half day tour to the Castelli Romani region.

We’ll travel south east of Rome to reach this region known for its verdant hills, pretty lakes and collection of small towns. Castelli Romani is an area there city dwellers in Rome have flocked to for centuries, thanks to the cooler climate and volcanic lakes found here. Even the pope has a summer residence in Castelli Romani at Castel Gandolfo.

The climate in Castelli Romani has made the locality a rich spot to grow an array of regional produce. In particular, the area is known for its vineyards, with the production of Frascati wine a speciality of the locality. This was one of the favourite wines in the time of ancient Rome, and vineyards have been producing such wines in this area since 5 BC. You’ll enjoy some wine tasting sessions as part of this tour to get a flavour for the different wines produced in a number of vineyards.

Castelli Romani also has a number of local food specialities, which includes porchetta. This moist, roasted pork meat is cooked stuffed with liver, wild fennel, garlic and rosemary – and it is a dish that originated in this whole region surrounding Rome. Castelli Romani also produces a range of berries and delectable mushrooms. You’ll enjoy a tasting session of a range of local foods, led by an expert guide, to get a true taste of the region on your visit

Outside Rome - Cooking Lesson in The Roman Countryside

Spend a day in the picturesque countryside north of Rome and learn how to prepare a traditional Italian meal using local produce.

We’ll depart Rome at 8:30 for this seven hour tour that takes you to the heart of rural Italy. It’ll take us an hour to reach the medieval village of Mazzano Romano, where we’ll spend the next few hours soaking up the food traditions of the locality. The town is part of the wider estate created by Pope Adrian I in the year 780, and is nowadays characterised by its quiet Italian charm.

Under the guidance of an expert chef, you’ll start your food experience in Mazzano Romano exploring the local food markets. The chef will show you the ropes of choosing the best ingredients for the meal you’re about to prepare, taking you to the best markets and specialist shops in the town. Along the way, you’ll also gain insights into the town’s history and modern day charm through a local’s eyes.

After shopping for the finest local ingredients, you’ll make your way to a kitchen in the town to continue your Italian food education. The chef will share the principles of Italian cooking with you, giving you the skills of making delicious and traditional cuisine using the produce you have available. You’ll learn how to get a feel for cooking the Italian way, without the need for a rigid recipe. After preparing the meal, you’ll sit down all together to enjoy the end result of your hard work in the kitchen.

Outside Rome – Pompeii and its Ruins

Spend the day visiting this ancient Roman city whose fate was forever changed when Mount Vesuvius erupted in AD 79.

We’ll depart from Rome at 7:30 for a full day tour to this famous city that has been preserved under layers of ash from the volcanic eruption. On the way we’ll pass the city of Naples, where you’ll enjoy seeing some of the main sights from the coach before we continue on to Pompeii itself. Here a local tour guide will lead you around Pompeii, sharing more about the history of the site as well as information about the latest excavations.

Pompeii was a rich Roman city filled with villas and a thriving commercial centre. When Mount Vesuvius catastrophically erupted, mud and ash came flowing at an unprecedented rate, burying the city and its inhabitants in up to six metres of volcanic material instantly. Now a UNESCO World Heritage Site, the city has been partially excavated to reveal a moment frozen in time forever. On your tour, you’ll see old Roman streets and buildings, wooden objects and human shapes that were entombed in the ash. There is also some graffiti carved on the walls, revealing a vulgar form of Latin that was not previously well known about.

Your guide will tell you some of the fascinating stories of Pompeii while showing you around the intriguing buried city. Excavations of Pompeii recommenced in 2018 with various new discoveries made – and you’ll find out all about this too when you visit.

Outside Rome – Capri Island with Blue Grotto

Spend an idyllic day on the island of Capri and blend the buzz of the city with tranquil island life.

We’ll depart Rome at 7:00 on this full day tour, and travel south to Naples before catching the ferry to Capri. On arrival you’ll meet a local tour guide, who will introduce you to the best the island has to offer. Having been a resort since the Roman times, the island has a timeless and high-end holiday feeling to it. Sights on the island include the quaint Marina Piccola (small harbour) and ruins of various Roman villas. The town of Capri is a glamourous place to spend some time, filled with boutiques and water-side restaurants. Anacapri is the higher and more rugged side of the island – a place to go for astounding sea views and charming island scenery. You’ll also spot the mystical sea stacks known as the faraglioni from this part of the island.

The Blue Grotto is another enchanting place to visit in Capri, and our tour also includes entrance tickets to this attraction. A sea cave on Capri’s coast, the Blue Grotto gets its name from sunlight that shines through an underwater cavity to create a blue reflection. An astonishing sight, in Roman times the Blue Grotto was used as the personal swimming spot of Emperor Tiberius! After visiting this geographical phenomenon, enjoy lunch and taking in a few more of Capri’s famous spots, before we make our return journey to Rome.

Rome, Fountains and Squares with lunch

Get to know some of Rome’s most iconic localities on this morning walking tour of the city.

Departing from your hotel at 10:00, we’ll walk directly to the Spanish Steps – 174 steps that form an iconic part of the city centre – framed by a view of the Trinità dei Monti church at the top. We’ll continue on to the Trevi Fountain – another Rome icon. This is one of the largest and grandest fountains in the city that has captured the imagination of many people around the world, thanks to its inclusion in many films. It is said that if you successfully throw a coin over your left shoulder into the fountain, you will one day return to Rome!

From here we’ll make our way to the Pantheon, a former Roman temple that was built to honour pagan gods in ancient Rome. Built more than 2,000 years ago, the Pantheon’s dome is still the world’s largest unreinforced concrete dome. It is also one of the best preserved buildings from ancient Rome, and your guide will tell you more fascinating facts about its history.

Our walking tour will finish at Piazza Navona, built on the site of a former Roman stadium where the Romans used to go to watch theatrical productions. After the walking part of our tour, we’ll go to a traditional Italian restaurant nearby. Here you’ll enjoy lunch and a tasting session of some delectable local produce and culinary specialities from the region.

 

 

Once Upon a Time: The Romans

Spend a quality afternoon with an expert guide in the Museo Nazionale Romano, a treasure trove of art from throughout the ages.

This three-hour tour commences at 10:00, when your guide will take you to some of the different locations of the National Roman Museum throughout the city. In particular, you’ll visit the Baths of Diocletian, which is home to the Cloister of Michelangelo. The famous artist came up with the design for this cloister, but it was only implemented after his death.

Your guide will also help you discover statues that were saved from the imperial palace and richly coloured frescoes that came from the Villa of Livia, an ancient Roman villa just outside of the city. We’ll also pay a fascinating visit to Palazzo Massimo alle Terme. A prestigious villa was previously located here, but in the 1880s the architect Camillo Pistrucci designed a new building in a neo-cinquecentesco style, that was to become one of the most prestigious schools in Rome. Nowadays it is home to various Roman artworks, including the bronze statue called Boxer at Rest. It is said to be one of the best examples of bronze sculptures from the ancient world, as much bronze work has been melted down and transformed for other uses over the centuries.

We’ll finish our tour at the Basilica of Santa Maria degli Angeli, home to the 17th century sundial created for the pope to calculate the ideal sequence of day and night for all seasons.

 

Roman Countryside, Food & Wine Tasting

Travel to a rural region not far from Rome to experience a different rhythm of life, as well as local food and wine specialities.

We’ll depart from Rome at 10:30 on this six-hour tour, travelling along the Appian Way – an old Roman road offering glorious views of the countryside. Passing through pretty villages of the Castelli Romani region, we’ll spot the numerous grand summer residences owned by Rome city dwellers. You’ll also see the pope’s summer residence at Castel Gandolfo.

Castelli Romani is home to numerous vineyards, and we’ll visit a winery to enjoy a wine tasting session of four local wines. Paired with some of the food produce from the region too, you’ll get a real sense of the flavours that flourish here.

Our tour will continue on to Lake Albano, formed from a volcanic crater. We’ll make another stop here to taste yet more of the region’s famous food produce. This includes porchetta – a local speciality of pork filled with fragrant ingredients including wild fennel, garlic and rosemary. We’ll also taste another local wine called Romanella, which is a distinctive sweet sparkling red wine.

Our final stop on this tour is at Lake Nemi, another volcanic crater lake. The lake is well known for its two sunken Roman ships, thought to have been used on the lake by the Roman emperor Caligula as pleasure barges. The lake is also known for its annual Strawberry Festival held every June.

Cascia and Spoleto – A Journey Through Time in Umbria

Spend the day visiting incredible urban centres surrounded by the rolling hills, vineyards and olive groves of Umbria.

We’ll depart from Rome at 7:30, travelling north through Umbria until we reach the town of Cascia. A remote town in a mountainous region, the views from Cascia are quite astounding. This town is also the home of the internationally known St Rita of Cascia. The Church of St Rita of Cascia was built in the early 20th century to house the relics of Rita of Cascia. This large shrine remains an important pilgrimage point for Christians today. You’ll visit the church and then enjoy some free time in Cascia for lunch or to spend more time in the church.

Our tour will then continue to the city of Spoleto. You’ll visit the 14th century Rocca Albornoziana fortress which sits atop a hill. Home to enchanting towers and courtyards, the interior is a place of beauty. The Painted Room is a particular delight, with frescoes dating back to the late 1300s. The castle is also home to Spoleto’s National Museum, with artworks and artefacts of the first Christian communities in the area. You’ll pay a visit to Ponte del Torri too, a 13th century aqueduct that continues on through a beautiful gorge, and the Roman Ponte Sanguinario (‘bloody bridge’) from the 1st century BC. Spoleto is also home to the Church of San Salvatore from the 4th to 5th centuries – a UNESCO World Heritage Site, and an illustrious Roman theatre.

Christian Rome and Underground Basilicas

Explore some of the most fascinating religious locations in Rome on this walking tour of the city.

Departing at 14:30, this two and a half hour tour with an expert guide will take you to a captivating array of churches and basilicas across Rome, uncovering secrets and stories along the way. The tour starts in the Lateran area of the city – the family name of the owners of the territory where the very first popes previously lived. We’ll pay a visit to the Cathedral of St John Lateran, which is the oldest and highest ranking of the four papal basilicas. This is the church of the Diocese of Rome and seat of the Roman Pontiff.

We’ll continue on to the Church of St Clement, the only church in Rome that has been built over three floors. The underground levels, originally converted into a church from a Roman nobleman’s house, can be explored, which includes the Altar of Mithras, dating back to the 1st century.

Our tour will continue to the 4th century Santi Quattro Caronati, dedicated to the ‘Four Holy Crowned Ones’, whose names are unknown. In 2002, an art historian discovered a display of 13th century frescoes preserved under a layer of plaster while restoring the Gothic Hall of the monastery. Scenes depicted include Twelve Months, the Four Seasons and the Zodiac. Our final stop will be the Church of St Peter in Chains, well known for the statue of Moses created by Michelangelo for the tomb of Pope Julius II.