Northern Italy

Wander through idyllic villages and medieval towers along Lake Garda, Italy’s largest lake. Re-enact the famous Romeo and Juliet balcony scene during your visit to Verona. Experience an architectural evolution at Villa Valmarana ai Nani, one of Vicenza’s urban villas. And, find intrigue behind the geometrics of La Rotonda, a square structure crowned with a dome.
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Day 1 Start tour
Day 2 Ciao Rome
Meet your tour director and check into hotel
Rome city walk
Spanish StepsTrevi FountainPantheonPiazza Navona
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 3 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 4 Rome--Florence
Travel to Florence via Pienza & Siena
Pienza tour director-led sightseeing
Corsignano CastleCathedral of Santa Maria AssuntaPalazzo Piccolomini
Siena guided sightseeing tour
Piazza del CampoPalazzo PubblicoDuomoChurch of St CatherineFortezza Medicea
Traditional Italian pizza dinner
Details: Pienza tour director-led sightseeing
You can’t help but bow to this architectural jewel and UNESCO World Heritage Site in the Val D’Orcia. Pope Pius II built Pienza as a retreat from Rome, and it became a model of humanist urban planning, soon adopted by other Italian towns and European centers. Explore the trapezoidal piazza flanked on the east side by Palazzo Piccolomini and the Cathedral of Santa Maria Assunta in the center. And while you’re snapping photos, say ‘Pecorino cheese’—the typical sheep’s milk kind for which Pienza is known.
Details: Siena guided sightseeing tour
Stroll across red brick piazzas. Pause in black-and-white striped churches. Gaze up at bell towers stretching high into the sky. Proud Siena is a glimpse into Italy’s medieval past, when Florence, Pisa, and Siena were all fierce rivals for European trade, money, and glory. As international students bask in the sunny Piazza del Campo, you’ll see the surrounding Palazzo Pubblico, home of the civic museum, and the Torre del Mangia, Siena’s bell tower. The tower was named after an extremely stout bell-ringer, whose name, Mangiaguadagni (“eats profits”) reflected his love of the local cuisine. Earn your own lunch by climbing the tower’s 503 steps.
Day 5 Florence landmarks
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
Optional  Pisa guided excursion  $75
Baptistery visitLeaning Tower
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 6 Florence--Lake Garda
Travel to Lake Garda via Maranello & Verona
Verona tour director-led sightseeing
Romeo and Juliet balconyVerona Arena
Details: Ferrari Galleria visit
Visit Maranello, Italy—home of the one of the world’s most iconic racecars. It houses both the Ferrari factory and this museum dedicated to the history of the brand and its engineering evolution. Learn how some Ferrari innovations transitioned from race to road cars. Plus, get hands-on with these world champion racing machines in the Red Campus teaching laboratory, an interactive space filled with simulations around the Ferrari company’s model of excellence: technological innovation, teamwork, style and design. Andiamo!
Details: Verona tour director-led sightseeing
Brush up on your Shakespeare before heading to Casa de Giuletta to gaze up (or down from, for a few euros more) the famed balcony that set the stage for star-crossed lovers Romeo and Juliet. Hear about the many versions of this tragic story that existed long before Shakespeare put his pen to it. Go from this battleground of love to a real gladiator’s Roman Arena. Theatre performances still take place in this third largest amphitheater in all of Italy, built in the 1st century B.C.
Day 7 Lake Garda
Vicenza guided sightseeing tour
Villa La RotondaTeatro OlimpicoPiazza dei SignoriBasilica PalladianaPalazzo del Capitaniato
Sirmione excursion
Scaliger CastleCatullos' Villa
Details: Vicenza guided sightseeing tour
Come see how “the other half” lived during Renaissance times. Vicenza—once the Venice of the Mainland—has a wealth of historical buildings thanks to 16th century architect Palladio, one of the most influential architects of all time. This UNESCO city is one of Italy’s richest where over half of the country’s gold ware is made. Visit World Heritage sites like Villa La Rotonda, Teatro Olimpico (the oldest surviving enclosed theatre) and neoclassical marvels such as the Palladium Basilica and Capitaniato Palace inside the Piazza dei Signori.
Details: Villa Valmarana ai Nani visit (see Tiepolo’s frescoes)
Learn the legend of the dwarf princess that tells the sad story behind the gnome statues (for which its nicknamed after) guarding the garden walls. But, your spirits will be quickly lifted by the grandeur of the architecture and art surrounding you. The grand villa houses remarkable frescoes by the Tiepolos—renowned 18th century father and son painters—that capture daily life in the Veneto and most notably carnival scenes.
Details: Sirmione excursion
Just when you’re thinking every town in Italy shines with history and culture, we come to the Pearl of the Lake—Lake Garda, that is. Behold Catullos' Villa, the revolutionary Roman poet’s birthplace, perched on the picturesque peninsula. Then see Scaliger Castle, a rare example of medieval port fortification. Climb 150 steps to the ramparts where you can take in amazing views of the lake from its towers.
Day 8 Lake Garda--Milan
Travel to Milan via Bergamo
Bergamo tour director-led sightseeing
Piazza VecchiaCampanonePalazzo della Ragione
Milan tour director-led sightseeing
La ScalaDuomofashion walk
Details: Bergamo tour director-led sightseeing
Nestled in the foothills of the Alps, Bergamo is a rare beauty overflowing with artistic treasures and its enchanting medieval vibe. It’s a real life tale of two cities—the Città Bassa or busy modern lower city and Città Alta, the upper city with its rich cultural heritage. Walk the medieval covered stairway in Piazza Vecchia that leads up to the 1st floor of Palazzo della Ragione with its impressive Campanone, or bell tower. Every evening at 2200 hours, the bell rings 180 times to warn citizens the walls are closing.
Details: Milan tour director-led sightseeing
Your Tour Director will lead your adventure in Milan, Italy's capital of fashion and finance. See the renowned La Scala opera house, with Europe's largest stage. The city's marble Duomo took almost 450 years to complete, and is the world's largest Gothic cathedral. On clear days, its 135 spires can be seen from the Alps.
Day 9 End tour

  • Or
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    Day 9 Start extension to Lake Maggiore
    Travel to Lake Maggiore
    Day 10 Lake Maggiore
    Details: Isola Bella visit
    Once host to Napoleon Bonaparte and his wife Josephine, among other notable socialites, this magical island is one of three on Lake Maggiore. Hop a ferry to visit the Baroque palace built by the Borromeo family. Wander around a sumptuous setting strewn with priceless tapestries, furnishings, statues and paintings. Catch your breath in an unusual mosaic grotto and if it’s March through October, stroll around a garden filled with rare and exotic plants.
    Day 11 End tour
    Map of  Northern Italy Educational Student Tour and Trip | Explorica
    Tour Includes:
    • Round-trip airfare
    • 7 overnight stays (9 with extension) in hotels with private bathrooms
    • Full European breakfast daily
    • Dinner daily
    • Full-time services of a professional Tour Director
    • Guided sightseeing tours and city walks as per itinerary
    • Visits 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.

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    3176.00 total fee
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