The Italian Campaign

The Italian Campaign
Walk in the footsteps of the Canadian WWII soldiers who fought gallantly for their countries and visit the sites where some of the most famous battles of the Italian front took place.
Learn more
Day 1 Start tour
Day 2 Ciao Catania
Meet your tour director and check into hotel
Museo Dello Sbarco visit
Details: Catania Guided Sightseeing Tour (depending on the flight schedule)
Catania is an ancient port city on Sicily's east coast. It sits at the foot of Mt. Etna, an active volcano with trails leading up to the summit. The city's wide central square, Piazza del Duomo, features the whimsical Fontana dell'Elefante statue and richly decorated Catania Cathedral. In the southwest corner of the square, La Pescheria weekday fish market is a rowdy spectacle surrounded by seafood restaurants.
Day 3 Catania
Enna and Assoro guided sightseeing
Details: Agira Canadian War Cemetery visit
Agira Canadian War Cemetery contains 490 Commonwealth burials of the Second World War. On 10 July 1943, following the successful conclusion of the North African campaign in mid-May, a combined allied force of 160,000 Commonwealth and American troops invaded Sicily as a prelude to the assault on mainland Italy. The Italians, who would shortly make peace with the Allies and re-enter the war on their side, offered little-determined resistance but German opposition was vigorous and stubborn. The campaign in Sicily came to an end on 17 August when the two allied forces came together at Messina but failed to cut off the retreating Axis lines. Agira was taken by the 1st Canadian Division of 28 July and the site for the war cemetery was chosen in September for the burial of all Canadians who had been killed in the Sicily campaign.
Day 4 Catania--Naples
Travel to Palermo
Palermo Guided Sightseeing Tour
Quattro CantiPalermo CathedralTeatro MassimoLa MartoranaMonreale visitMonreale Cathedral
Overnight ferry to Naples
Details: Palermo Guided Sightseeing Tour
Explore the chaotic and vibrant capital of Sicily, where a mix of Italian, Arab, French, and Phoenician influences -- to name only a few -- has created a culture unique in all of Italy. Islamic filigreed windows throw intricate shadows on 17th-century Baroque cupolas; gold and marble mosaics sparkle in churches while leafy palm trees ruffle in ocean breezes outside. With a licensed local guide, start your tour of this energetic city at the Baroque Quattro Canti ("four corners"), Palermo's central intersection. Head to the Norman Palace, once home to the finest and most learned court in Europe. (Notice the halos on the statues -- they were added to the original Moorish statues when the Christian Normans arrived in 1072 and took over the building.) Step inside La Martorana, one of the few buildings remaining from the Middle Ages, for a peek at its glittering gold Byzantine mosaics. And don't miss the rows of pastry shops selling marzipan, a Sicilian specialty; the sweet almond-paste candy is sculpted and dyed to resemble realistic fruits, vegetables -- even shellfish!
Day 5 Naples--Rome
Arrive in Naples
Travel to Rome via Monte Cassino
Cassino Excursion
Rome city walk
Spanish StepsTrevi FountainPantheonPiazza Navona
Details: Commonwealth War Graves Cemetery
Pay your respects to the Canadian soldiers who gave their lives at the battle of Monte Cassino.
Details: Monte Cassino Monument visit
Monte Cassino saw some of the fiercest battles of the Italian Campaign during WWII. Visit the site of the Cassino Memorial that commemorates over 4,000 soldiers who lost their lives all over Italy and have no known grave and then learn more about the battle itself at the war museum.
Details: Rome city walk
Baroque-en hearted? Revive your spirits with a walk past Rome's most beautiful and unusual Baroque fountains. At the foot of the Spanish Steps, elegant cafes once favoured by visiting Brits and Americans surround the central fountain. The water pressure here was so low that the artist had to sink the fountain into the ground to get any water going through it, so he went ahead and designed the fountain to look like a sinking ship. There's no shortage of water pressure at the nearby Trevi Fountain, a Baroque extravagance designed by master sculptor Bernini. At the Pantheon, you'll see the largest concrete dome ever constructed. An oculus, or hole, in the dome lets sunlight into the beautiful temple, dedicated to all the gods.
Day 6 Rome Landmarks
Rome guided walking sightseeing tour with Whisper headsets
Vatican Museums & Sistine Chapel visitSt. Peter’s Basilica visitColosseum visitPiazza VeneziaForum Romanum visit
Authentic trattoria dinner
Details: Rome guided walking sightseeing tour with Whisper headsets
Gods and gladiators, glory and gore. Ancient Rome lives on in its spectacular monuments, flavoring the frenetic present with tastes of the past. Don a space-age Whisper headset to get the inside scoop on the most spectacular, the Colosseum, a grisly battle arena that seated more than 45,000. An enormous retractable roof awning system kept spectators cool on sunny days. The nearby Forum provides a glimpse into everyday ancient life, with markets, meeting places, and temples all combined into one vast space. Move into Christian Rome at St. Peter’s Basilica, the triumphal Renaissance church flanked by rows of columns radiating outward like welcoming arms. Within the church Michelangelo’s masterpieces are on display, the “Pietà” in the main church and the recently restored ceiling frescoes and “Last Judgment” in the Sistine Chapel. Continue your trek through time at Piazza Venezia, site of the enormous monument to Victor Emmanuel II, Italy’s first king, and of the Palazzo Venezia, where Mussolini set up his headquarters and from whose porch his mother was said to eavesdrop on citizens below. (The Sistine Chapel is closed on most religious holidays and Sundays, except for the last Sunday in each month).
Day 7 Rome--Ortona
Travel to Ortona
Ortona Canadian Cemetery Visit
Day 8 Ortona--Florence
Travel to Florence via Assisi
Assisi guided sightseeing
Make your own pizza dinner
Details: St. Francis of Assisi Basilica visit
Pope Gregory IX laid the first stone of the Lower Basilica the day after the canonization of St Francis, on July 17, 1228. Two years later the saint's body that had been resting in the church of San Giorgio (the future church of St Claire's) was brought here in secret for fear of looting by tomb raiders and buried in the unfinished church. No date has been recorded concerning the start of works on the Upper Basilica, but it must have been after the abdication from the order of Brother Elia in 1239, who had hitherto directed the works on the Romanesque Lower Basilica. Both churches were consecrated by Pope Innocent IV in 1253.
Day 9 Florence--Rome
Florence guided walking sightseeing tour with Whisper headsets
Palazzo VecchioPiazza della SignoriaChiesa di Santa CrocePonte VecchioDuomo visitleather workshopGates of ParadiseGiotto’s Bell TowerDante's House
Travel to Rome
Details: Florence guided walking sightseeing tour with Whisper headsets
Immerse yourself in the charms of old-world Firenze. The birthplace and focal point of the Italian Renaissance, Florence still has the masterpieces to prove it. Brunelleschi’s monumental cuploa (dome) atop the city's renowned Duomo dominates the skyline. Your local licensed guide will take you to Giotto's Bell Tower and the aptly named Gates of Paradise, the bronze east doors of the Baptistery that spurred the burgeoning Renaissance. Don’t overlook the tombs of Michelangelo, Galileo, and Machiavelli at the Chiesa di Santa Croce, or Florence’s amazing leather goods. You can check them out when you visit one of the area’s famed workshops!
Day 10 End tour
Map of The Italian Campaign Educational Student Tour and Trip | Explorica
Tour Includes:
  • Round-trip airfare
  • 7 overnight stays in hotels with private bathrooms
  • 1 overnight stay in cabins on ferry
  • Full European breakfast daily
  • Dinner daily
  • Full-time services of a professional Tour Director
  • Guided sightseeing tours and city walks as per itinerary
  • Visit to select attractions as per itinerary
  • Guided sightseeing tours with high-tech headset as per itinerary
  • Tour Diary™
  • Note: On arrival day only dinner is provided; on departure day, only breakfast is provided
  • Note: Tour cost does not include airline-imposed baggage fees, or fees for any required passport or visa. Please visit our Fees FAQ page for a full list of items that may not be included in the cost of your tour.

We are better able to assist you with a quote for your selected departure date and city over the phone. Please call 1.888.310.7120 to price this tour with your requested options.

Please select a postal code
3667.00 total fee
Basic Options

Estimate total number in your group, including yourself and any chaperones
Private Tour
Please wait while we process your request...