National & International Workshops

CAE GOES TO ITALY!

October 10, 2015 - October 20, 2015

National Workshop for Adults
Registration Required


CAE GOES TO ITALY!

October 10-20, 2015

Trip Cost: $5500  (AIR FARE IS INCLUDED)

VISIT VENICE, FLORENCE AND ROME

1st CLASS ACCOMODATIONS

EXCELLENT LOCAL GUIDES

 

(This trip is booked full)

 

The tour includes:

Walking tour of St. Mark’s Square in Venice

Visit the National Museum and Art Gallery of Palazzo Mansi

Enjoy wine tasting with local specialties and lunch at a farm in Tuscany

Prepare a home-cooked Italian meal with lessons from an Italian chef

Celebrate the beauty of the Accademia of Fine Arts and see Michelangelo’s David

Savor a Pecorino cheese tasting in Pienza

Experience the grandeur of Rome, the Roman Forum, and the Colosseum

Visit the Vatican Museum and the Sistine Chapel


 

1/2 of trip cost is due upon registration and 1/2 is due August 1st.

Call 479.474.7767  today to book your seat on one of CAE's most exciting trips ever!

 



ITINERARY

DAY 1, Saturday - Depart for Italy
Depart for Italy. Your international flight includes meals, drinks and in-flight entertainment

DAY 2, Sunday - Arrive in Venice
Benvenuti! Welcome to Italy! Arrive in magical Venice and transfer to your hotel; remainder of the day is at leisure. Time to rest and relax before tonight's briefing with your tour manager on the exciting tour that awaits you, followed by a welcome dinner with fellow travelers
Overnight: Hotel Bonvecchiati, Venice
Meals: Dinner

DAY 3, Monday - Discover Venice
Your discovery of endlessly fascinating Venice begins with a guided walking tour of St. Mark's Square. View the Basilica of San Marco, built over several centuries in a fusion of Byzantine, Roman and Venetian architecture, considered one of the most breathtaking Venetian monuments. Walk via the Bridge of Sighs built at the beginning of the 17th century to serve as a link between the prison and the interrogation rooms of the Doge's Palace; its arched profile composes one of the most famous scenes of the city. Continue to the pink marble Doge's Palace, official residence of the Venetian ruler, now a museum of art treasures. In the afternoon, experience a specially-designed Insider's Venice Walking Tour designed to take you “off the beaten path” to places not usually seen by tourists. We start our walk at Santa Maria Formosa, an inspirational white church dating back to 1492, and Santa Maria dei Miracoli, the "marble church," a lasting example of early Venetian Renaissance. Arrive at Marco Polo's house, where the world explorer lived, located close to the Rialto Bridge with its busy market area. Then, eat like a Venetian! Stop at a local “Bacaro” to enjoy a “cicchetti” – a simple set of appetizers based on the market choice of the day, paired with a glass of Italian wine. Continue via Campo Sant'Angelo, in the San Marco, to the Fenice Theater, cradle of many great operas. Like the Phoenix for which the theatre is named, Teatro La Fenice burned to the ground in 1996 and finally rose from the ashes in 2004 after massive reconstruction that restored the theatre to its original splendor. Evening at leisure in this fairy-tale city. Discover the city's culture in fine restaurants, shops and galleries. Don't miss the optional Gondola Ride, with music. It's definitely one of the highlights of any Italian holiday! You will travel along the famous Grand Canal, and experience a piece of Venetian history gliding along the centuries-old canals, past lavish palaces and under famous arched bridges
Optional: Gondola Ride with Music
Overnight: Hotel Bonvecchiati, Venice
Meals: Breakfast

DAY 4, Tuesday - Murano, Burano & Torcello in the Venice Lagoon
The day begins with a boat ride to the island of Murano. Built on a series of small islands, connected by bridges in the Venetian Lagoon, Murano has been known for centuries for the famous Murano glass. Visit one of the island's glass blowing factories to view this intricate art. Then to Burano, the most scenic islands of the Venetian lagoon, with its picturesque canals lined with brightly colored house and the 15th century San Martino Church with its leaning bell tower. Walk along the main street of Via Galuppi, famous for its artisan lace makers and lined with pastry shops, cafes and restaurants. Continue to the rural and quiet island of Torcello, the first settlement in the lagoon - it is a beautiful visit back in time to see several amazing artistic architectural wonders including the Church of Santa Fosca and the Byzantine Cathedral of Santa Maria Assunta. Return to the main island of Venice for the afternoon at leisure. Wander on your own - there is so much to see! Walk the cobblestone streets and the endless Venetian bridges to discover this city's intimate elements
Overnight: Hotel Bonvecchiati, Venice
Meals: Breakfast

DAY 5, Wednesday - Tuscany / Lucca / Wine Tasting
Magnificent panoramas are waiting for you today. Travel through the rolling Tuscany countryside to Lucca, a perfectly preserved jewel of medieval architecture, with its streets showing layers of history on every turn of the winding streets; the massive 17th century walls completely surround the city. Walk the narrow streets of the original Roman grid to the Church of San Michele and its beautiful piazza, which occupies the site of the ancient Roman Forum. Then, a unique “inside look” at a private museum-residence. Visit the National Museum and Art Gallery of Palazzo Mansi, a museum that once was home to a wealthy Lucca merchant. This extraordinary collection features sumptuous tapestries, frescoes and Italian and Flemish art, standing as a testimony to the status and wealth of the Mansi family. After the tour drive to a local Tuscan farm for lunch. Wine tasting and a sampling of local delectable specialties will be a highlight of the meal. Continue to the lively Renaissance city of Florence, with its priceless art and architecture, for dinner and overnight
Overnight: Hotel Villa Fiesole, Florence
Meals: Breakfast, Lunch, Dinner

DAY 6, Thursday - Florence / The Accademia
Today, the lifetime dream of seeing Michelangelo's David is realized. At the Accademia of Fine Arts, stand in awe of this glorious work of art. On to the magnificent Duomo, with its Brunelleschi designed dome, and view the renowned “Gates of Paradise” by Ghiberti. You'll be enchanted as you walk through the open-air museum at Signoria Square, ending at the splendid Ponte Vecchio, also known as the “Old Bridge”. Florence is indeed the center of the world's finest art and architecture. The optional guided tour of the Uffizi Gallery* provides insight into the history of the structure and its collections. Originally the private collection of the Medici family, the Palazzo was opened to the public in 1765. The tour highlights include exceptional examples of Florentine painting with the intention of helping you to better understand the works of the masters, including Giotto, Botticelli and Leonardo da Vinci. Following the tour, complimentary beverages at the museum's cafe, with its breathtaking views of the city. Tour participation guarantees immediate entry to the Gallery, with no lengthy waits in 2-3 hour lines. The remainder of the day and evening at leisure in Florence. Time to revisit some of the museums, shop for gold and quality leather, or just enjoy the fabulous ambiance
Optional Uffizi Gallery Tour - Available for purchase only in Italy from your tour manager
Overnight: Hotel Villa Fiesole, Florence
Meals: Breakfast

DAY 7, Friday - Tuscan Cooking Class, Florence
Food! Glorious Italian Food! Begin this fabulous day at the local market. Here, we'll shop “like a native” following our chef's instructions to buy the fresh produce needed to prepare the most delicious Italian meal. We then take our bags of ingredients out to a farmhouse in the countryside. After a welcome drink, the chef begins our morning of cooking lessons. The basics include home-made pasta (of course!), rural soups, home-made sauces, and the recipe of the famous Panzanella. All of the Tuscan secrets will be revealed, and, using fresh Tuscan olive oil makes a huge difference in taste. Afterwards, sit back, relax, sip a glass of great wine and enjoy lunch, your own creation! The rest of the afternoon is at leisure to independently explore this astonishing city, with captivating vistas at every turn
Overnight: Hotel Villa Fiesole, Florence
Meals: Breakfast, Lunch

DAY 8, Saturday - Chianti area / Siena / Rome
Delight in the scenery as you drive through the Chianti area of Tuscany, renowned for its magical landscapes, to Siena, a step back to medieval Tuscany. The heart of the city, Il Campo, was declared by UNESCO as a World Heritage Site. Its celebrated centuries-old Palio horse races, takes place twice every summer, with participants riding bareback around the spectator-packed square, along with non-stop 24 hour celebrations. The city sits over three hills accented by the huge square where the Roman Forum once stood and dominated by the red Palazza Pubbico and its tower. Stroll leisurely on your own before departing to Rome. En route, we stop in Pienza, a Renaissance hilltop town nestled between the towns of Montepulciano and Montalcino in the Val d'Orcia to sample delicious Pecorino (sheep's milk) cheese. The excitement builds as we arrive in much-anticipated Rome, the astonishing city built on seven hills
Overnight: Ambasciatori Palace, Rome
Meals: Breakfast, Dinner

DAY 9, Sunday - Ancient Rome
We step back into history this morning at the legendary Roman Forum, the central area of the city from which ancient Rome developed. Next, we view the triumphal Arch of Constantine, erected by the Roman Senate to commemorate his tenth year of leadership over the Eternal City. On to the mighty Colosseum, the largest amphitheater built in the Roman Empire that once seated over 50,000 spectators. Deadly combat of gladiators and wild animals were attended frequently by the rich, the poor and by the Emperor himself. Enjoy the afternoon and evening at leisure. lluminated Rome will tempt you to walk through every piazza. But, be sure to stop along the way for the best Italian cuisine on the planet
Overnight: Ambasciatori Palace, Rome
Meals: Breakfast

DAY 10, Monday - Vatican Museum / Sistine Chapel / Piazzas of Rome
Undoubtedly, one of the world's most astonishing and memorable experiences! Today, we visit the Vatican Museum and Michelangelo's incomparable Sistine Chapel. Stroll through St. Peter's Square, passing Bernini's famous colonnade to St. Peter's Basilica. Stand breathlessly as you view Michelangelo's Pieta. This highly-finished marble sculpture depicts the body of Jesus in the arms of Mary after the Crucifixion -- considered to be among the most compelling of all works of art in the Western world. Then, a change of pace as we stroll through the characteristic “piazzas and vias” of Rome, with our tour guide. Stop to admire the grandeur of the iconic Trevi Fountain, and of course, toss in some coins! Leisure time for lunch on your own, before reaching the majestic Spanish Steps on the Piazza di Spagna, the longest and widest decorative steps in Europe. At the monumental Pantheon, the best-preserved of any Roman building, you'll see the largest brick dome in the history of architecture, the most copied and imitated of all ancient works. Continue on and admire the baroque Piazza Navona, built on the site of the 1st century Stadium of Domitian, lying underneath, where great chariot races were once held. Today, the piazza is packed with vendors, street performers and lined with cafes. Enjoy a cappuccino, or gelato and indulge in the national pastime of “people-watching”. Tonight, farewell dinner together in a lovely Roman restaurant. Bid farewell to Rome, your tour manager and to your new-found friends
Overnight: Ambasciatori Palace, Rome
Meals: Breakfast, Dinner

DAY 11, Tuesday - Depart Italy
Arrivederci Roma! Transfer to the airport for your departure flight
Meals: Breakfast


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