Rome to Paris Trip Notes

Rome to Paris

Last Modified: 14 Apr 2016
Rome to Paris
Trip code: ZMSP
Validity: 01 Jan 2016 to 31 Dec 2016
Put your finger on the pulse of Europe's beating heart on this memorable tour through Italy, Switzerland and France. From ancient wonders on the bustling streets of Rome, to high fashion in Milan, traditional folklore in the Swiss Alps and champagne tours in Reims - this trip truly captures the spoils of Europe. Travel through the charming hillside villages of the Cinque Terre, get close to nature amid the grandeur of Lucerne and fall in love with romantic Paris - each day brings a fascinating new discovery.
Table of Contents
StyleAccommodationFinish point description
ThemesAccommodation NotesFinishing point instructions
Is this trip right for you?Meals introductionEmergency contact
Why we love itMealsVisas
MapTransportWhat to take
ItineraryMoney mattersClimate and seasonal information
Itinerary disclaimerGroup leaderHealth
Physical ratingSafetyTravel insurance
Included activitiesJoining pointA couple of rules
Important notesJoining point descriptionResponsible Travel
Group sizeJoining point instructionsThe Intrepid Foundation
Your fellow travellersFinish pointFeedback
Style
Original
Themes
Explorer
Is this trip right for you?
- The primary means of transportation on this trip is by train. Train travel is a fast way to traverse long distances, allowing you to avoid traffic jams and arrive right into the city centre. Trains are comfortable and often decked out with air-conditioning, toilets, a snack bar (or vending machine) and power points. Please note that you'll have to carry your own luggage on and off the train, so make sure it doesn’t exceed our weight and size recommendations. You can find this information in the 'What to Take' section of the trip notes.
- As there are potholes and cobblestones in many European cities, it's recommended that you leave any wheelie bags/cases at home and bring a backpack instead. A large backpack should be enough to carry all of your belongings.
- Summer temperatures can be extreme in many of the regions visited (over 40°C), which can be uncomfortable. It’s important to use sun protection, wear layers to combat the heat and drink plenty of water. Please carefully consider the time of the year you wish to travel and your suitability to that season.
- As accommodation on this trip is multi-share, single travellers will share a room with another traveller of the same sex. If you’d prefer not to share, a single room supplement is available at an additional charge. Please ask your travel consultant for more details, and please note that in some hotels a single supplement exclusion applies where single rooms are not available. Also, hotels in Europe often don't have double beds, but rather two single beds that can be pushed together. This trip is a great opportunity to get to know other travellers, so embrace it while you can.
Why we love it
- Walk along Cinque Terre's rocky coastal pathways, calling into the sleepy pastel villages of Manarola, Riomaggiore and Vernazza
- Wander around Rome's famous landmarks including the Colosseum, Vatican City, Sistine Chapel, St Peter's Basilica and much more. This is a city where you'll be able to tick a lot off your bucket list
- Taste authentic French cuisine in Dijon and visit one of its famous wineries to sample the local tipple
- Be romanced by Paris, the City of Love. The Eiffel Tower and Champs-Elysees are unforgettable when lit up at night
- Be awed by the picture-perfect setting of Interlaken, with the snow-capped peaks of the Swiss Alps as a backdrop
Map

Itinerary
Day 1 Rome
Buongiorno! Welcome to Italy. Your adventure begins with a welcome meeting which usually takes place at around 7:00pm on Day 1. You can arrive at any time during the day as there are no activities planned until this important meeting; please check with the hotel reception where and when exactly it will take place, or check the reception notice boards. If you can't arrange a flight that will have you arrive at the hotel by early evening, you may wish to arrive a day early so you're able to attend. We'll be happy to book additional accommodation for you (subject to availability). If you're going to be late, please inform the hotel reception. We'll be collecting your insurance details and next of kin information at this meeting, so please ensure you have all these details to provide to your leader.

Crowded with ancient ruins and religious monuments, Rome still pulses to the beat of modern life and is packed with designer shops, restaurants, cafes and exciting nightlife. There are so many things to do in Rome, we recommend you arrive a few days early to see the all sights. No visit would be complete without a trip to Vatican City and St Peter's Basilica. Entry to the Basilica is free, and there's a small charge to climb the dome for the ultimate breathtaking panorama over bella Roma. Also make the time to visit the Vatican Museum and Sistine Chapel. The Vatican Museum is closed on some days, including most Sundays. On the last Sunday of the month, it's open and free (but expect large crowds). Check the Vatican website for these dates: www.vatican.va

Notes: Tickets for the Vatican Museum can be booked online at http://biglietteriamusei.vatican.va/musei/tickets/do Alternatively, the Galleria Borghese can be booked online at http://www.galleriaborghese.it/borghese/en/einfo.htm
Optional Activities
  • Castel Sant'Angelo - EUR10
  • Christian catacombs - EUR8
  • Colosseum, Roman Forum and Palatine Hill - EUR16
  • Keats-Shelley Memorial House - EUR5
  • Galleria Borghese - EUR15
  • Vatican museums - EUR16
  • Pantheon - Free
  • St Peter's Dome Climb & Elevator - EUR8
  • Venezia Palace - EUR5
  • Urban Adventures - Ancient Rome: Archaeological Discovery Tour - EUR89
  • Urban Adventures - Roman Dolce Vita - EUR63
  • Urban Adventures - Trastevere: Trends and Tradition - EUR55
    Accommodation
    Hotel (1 nt)
    Day 2 Rome / Lucca
    Enjoy some free time in Rome to see the must-see sights such as the Colosseum and Arch of Constantine, the Forum (centre of ancient Rome), the Victor Emmanuel Monument, the Pantheon, the Trevi Fountain, Piazza Navona, the Spanish Steps, Via Condotti or Piazza Venezia. If you wish, your group leader will be available for an orientation walk taking in some of the best-known sights of Rome.

    In the afternoon board a train for Lucca (approx 3 to 4 hours). Lucca is one of Tuscany's real hidden gems, with centuries-old buildings, beautiful churches, charming piazzas and narrow streets within the city ramparts.
    Included Activities
    • Rome Orientation walk
      Optional Activities
      • National Gallery Villa Guinigi - EUR4
      • Barga bus day trip - EUR8
      • Guinigi Tower Climb - EUR4
      • Palazzo Pfanner Gardens - EUR6
      • Cathedral of San Martino (including Ilaria del Carretto Tomb) - EUR3
      • Palazzo Pfanner house - EUR4
      • Puccini concert - EUR20
      • Cathedral Museum - EUR4
      • Lucca bike hire - EUR15
        Accommodation
        Private apartment (1 nt)
        Meals
        1 breakfast
        Day 3 Lucca / Pisa
        This morning pick up a bike and set off on a cycling tour following Lucca's old city ramparts which surround the entire city. It is possible to circle the whole city without once getting off the walls. It's then off into the beautiful Tuscan countryside along the scenic Serchio River, through villages and along quiet gravel paths (4 km round the walls and 14 km by the river, approx 3 hrs).

        Our base in Lucca provides us with the perfect opportunity for an outing to the nearby city of Pisa (approx 30 mins by local train), where you'll have the chance to visit the world-famous Duomo, Baptistry and of course, the gravity-defying Leaning Tower.

        Notes: The bike ride may take place today or on day4 or 5, depending on the weather forecast. Your leader will advise closer to the date.
        Included Activities
        • Lucca Bicycle Tour
        • Pisa Half Day Trip
          Accommodation
          Private apartment (1 nt)
          Day 4 Lucca / Florence
          Take a day trip into Florence by local train (approx 1.5 hrs), which allows you to view the many wonderful sights in this beautiful 'outdoor museum'. Florence, the cultural heart of Tuscany, bursts with religious treasures and Renaissance masterpieces. It's been said that during the second millennium, a third of Europe's most important artists lived in Florence. The minds and talents of the Medicis, Leonardo da Vinci, Raphael, Brunelleschi, Machiavelli, Donatello and Michelangelo all flourished here. See the Pitti Palace, the Ponte Vecchio, the Arno River, the many statues and monuments of the Piazza della Signoria, the Palazzo Vecchio, the 13th-century Duomo, the Baptistry and the Gates of Paradise, Giotto's Belltower, and Michelangelo's David. There will be free time to take in the many fine museums and artistic treasures such as the Medici Chapels, and the Uffizi, as well as time to shop in the many markets and chic boutiques.

          Note: Florentine State Museums (Uffizi, Accademia, Pitti Palace, Medici Chapels, Bargello, Archaeological Museum, Davanzati) can all be booked in advance. Reserve tickets by phone on (+39) 055 294883 from Monday to Friday 8.30am-6.30pm, Saturday 8.30am-12.30pm. You can also book online at www.weekendafirenze.com. We suggest that you book in advance (your leader can nbe of assistance) especially for the Uffizi as this museum experiences enormous queues (up to 5 hours) all year round. The individual museums have slightly different opening times and closing days between them but the website - www.firenzemusei.it - has everything you need to know about all of them. We arrive into Florence in the late morning, so the best time for your visit to any of the museums will be in the afternoon of day 4. IMPORTANT: Please note that if you choose to pre-book your ticket for day 4 you may miss out on the bike ride in Lucca should this take place on day 4 due to adverse weather conditions on day 3.
          Included Activities
          • Florence Day Trip
            Optional Activities
            • Palazzo Pfanner House and Garden combo - EUR6
            • Uffizi Gallery - EUR16
            • Palazzo Vecchio - EUR10
            • Pitti Palace - Boboli Gardens, Museo Argenti, Costume Gallery, Porcellain Museum - EUR10
            • Accademia - EUR16
            • Museum Bargello - EUR4
            • Medici Chapels - EUR6
              Accommodation
              Private apartment (1 nt)
              Day 5 Lucca
              Today is a free day in Lucca to take in all the sights that this city has to offer. Perhaps check out the former Roman amphitheater - To be found off Via Fillungo. The remains of the amphitheater are gone, however the medieval houses now standing in its place follow the outline where the spectator stands once were. There are many outdoor cafes where you can sit down and see the world go by and do a spot of people watching. Make sure you also check out the 14th century Duomo di San Martino, containing Ilaria del Carretto's sarcophagus, and climb one of the city's towers, such as pretty Torre Guinigi, visible from afar with trees growing on it's roof.
              Accommodation
              Private apartment (1 nt)
              Day 6 La Spezia
              Travel by train, bound for La Spezia (approx 3 hrs), the gateeway to the Cinque Terre, or Five Lands in English. After lunch explore the city or perhaps head out by ferry to the pretty seaside town of Portovenere, known for its colourful houses straddling the waterfront. Return to La Spezia or opt to take another ferry to Lerici, another small village across the Bay of Poets dominated by its castle, for dinner.
              Accommodation
              Hotel (1 nt)
              Day 7 Cinque Terre / La Spezia
              This morning embark on a walk along the famous path of the Cinque Terre. Olive groves and vineyards cover the mountains that plunge into the sea - the vistas here are breathtaking. If you're feeling energetic, walking the entire path (12 km, approx 5 hrs) will give you the best taste of the villages and countryside. Please note that some sections of the Cinque Terre path can be quite difficult with challenging uphill stretches, narrow paths, steep cliffs and foot bridges. Appropriate footwear (trainers or light hiking shoes) are required for this day.

              It's also possible to take the train between any of the villages or back to the group's base whenever you want. After working up an appetite, take advantage of the foods of the Liguria region with a pesto class. Focaccia is also a specialty in this area and makes a great start to lunch. In the late afternoon return to La Spezia, where the rest of your day is then free.

              PLEASE NOTE: Due to recent landslides in the area it is currently not possible to walk the the Via dell'Amore and the coastal section between Manarola and Corniglia. There are alternative inland routes, however these are of a higher physical rating and involve steep ups and downs. It is possible to take the train or a bus for these sections.

              Cinque Terre path sections:
              - Riomaggiore to Manarola (the original Via dell'Amore) is currently closed until further notice. The alternative is an inland path, taking around 1 hour involving a rocky path with lots of steps.
              - Manarola to Corniglia is also closed to landslides. The alternative is via the hill side village of Volastra. It takes 1 hour to reach Volastra via a series of steep staircases, and then another hour to reach Corniglia. There is an hourly bus from Manarola to Volastra in order to bypass the steps.
              - Corniglia to Vernazza is medium level difficulty and takes about one and a half hours on a rocky path.
              - Vernazza to Monterosso is more challenging but arguably the most scenic and takes about two hours on a rocky path.

              Please also note that due to safety reasons some sections of any path can be closed at short notice.
              Included Activities
              • Cinque Terre Day Trip
                Optional Activities
                • Church of St Andrea - Free
                • Day Cruise - EUR25
                • Pesto Class in Levanto - EUR13
                • Sea kayak hire - EUR10
                  Accommodation
                  Hotel (1 nt)
                  Meals
                  1 breakfast
                  Day 8 Milan / Stresa
                  Travel by train to Milan (approx 3 hrs). Italy's most prosperous and fashionable city, Milan is the place for stylish shopping and cafes - Milanese specialities! While in Milan many visitors will want to take a visit to Leonardo Da Vinci's masterpiece, The Last Supper, or just explore the city's historic centre and visit the magnificent Duomo (cathedral) with its stunning Gothic terrace.

                  In the afternoon leave Milan by train for our next destination, Stresa (approx 1.5 hrs). Charming 19th-century Stresa is a town that boasts all the amenities of both a traditional seaside resort and a winter ski resort. The Italian lakeland scenery is beautiful with blue waters, soaring mountains, woodlands, exotic gardens, Victorian-style resort towns, historic hamlets, traditional Italian fishing villages and reminders of a bygone era in every direction.

                  Note: Your leader can't assist with tickets to see the Last Supper. These tickets are limited and generally sell out extremely quickly and up to six months in advance. If you expressly want to see the Last Supper you need to make arrangements in advance. Day 8 of this trip between 1pm and 3pm is the most suitable time. Note that the viewing is 15 minutes and in order not to lose the reservation, visitors must arrive 15 minutes before the time allocated for the visit. For information and reservations call +39 02 92 800 360. Online bookings may be available at these sites: www.cenacolovinciano.org or http://www.vivaticket.it/index.php?. Some websites will only sell a ticket in conjunction with an additional product such as a guide book or another museum entry.
                  Included Activities
                  • Milan Duomo Roof Visit
                    Optional Activities
                    • The Last Supper from - EUR29
                      Accommodation
                      Hotel (1 nt)
                      Meals
                      1 breakfast
                      Day 9 Lago Maggiore / Stresa
                      Today board a local ferry for a scenic trip on Lake Maggiore to the beautiful Borromeo Isles. Visit the romantic palatial residence built in the 17th century by Charles III in stunning Lombard-Baroque style, and wander through its wonderful hanging gardens. Try cooling yourself, as the original inhabitants did, in the ornately decorated caves. You can lunch on the islands in one of the traditional fishing villages and if there's time to spare, visit the markets and churches in one of the lakeside hamlets. Ride the cable car up to the top of Mount Mottarone, the winter ski centre, from where there are wonderful views of the Lakes Region, the Swiss Alps and the Monte Rosa Massif. Evenings in Stresa are best spent strolling the quaint streets of the town, people-watching from the pavement cafes or enjoying Italian food at one of the many lakeside restaurants.
                      Included Activities
                      • Lake Maggiore Cruise
                        Optional Activities
                        • Mount Mottarone cable car - EUR19
                        • Mottorone Alpine Botanical Gardens - EUR4
                        • Palazzo Borromeo - EUR15
                        • Isola Madre house and gardens - EUR12
                          Accommodation
                          Hotel (1 nt)
                          Meals
                          1 breakfast
                          Day 10 Lucerne
                          Take a spectacular train journey to Lucerne in Switzerland (approx 6 hrs). Explore the medieval city of Lucerne, located on the edge of a mountain-locked lake with plenty to do and see. This historic old town is famous for 15th century frescoed houses and covered wooden bridges - one festooned with visions of death.
                          Accommodation
                          Hotel (1 nt)
                          Meals
                          1 breakfast
                          Day 11 Lucerne
                          Today is a free day to explore the area around Lucerne. Catch the cog wheel railway to the top of nearby Mount Pilatus and take the cable car back down, or visit the excellent Transport Museum. Alternatively, you might just want to relax and enjoy the mountain vista from a lake cruise or stroll on one of the many lakeside paths.
                          Optional Activities
                          • Mount Pilatus cable car - CHF95
                          • Transport Museum - CHF30
                            Accommodation
                            Hotel (1 nt)
                            Day 12 Interlaken / Swiss Alps
                            A train journey through villages and spectacular alpine scenery brings us to the Bernese Oberland and the town of Interlaken (approx 4 hrs). Upon arrival travel to nearby Lauterbrunnen and enjoy a walk through characteristic Swiss countryside to view the magnificent Trummelbach Falls. There's plenty of time to to wander the beautiful walking paths of the Lauterbrunnen Valley and to visit nearby villages where you can enjoy excellent traditional Swiss cheesecake and hot chocolate. Otherwise, sample some traditional Swiss food at one of the local restaurants - fondue and rosti are specialities.
                            Included Activities
                            • Trummelbach Falls
                              Accommodation
                              Guesthouse (1 nt)
                              Day 13 Interlaken / Swiss Alps
                              Interlaken and the Bernese Oberland region offer a multitude of activities to take part in during your free time. Why not indulge in a nine o'clock champagne breakfast with 'James Bond' at Piz Gloria, the world's highest revolving restaurant on the peak of the Schilthorn. With views to the Black Forest in Germany and the Italian Alps on a clear day, it's a spectacular spot, but at 3,000 metres you have to start climbing early! If this sounds way too challenging, there are three eye-popping cable cars that can get you there in under an hour and you'll also have an opportunity to visit the major ski resort villages on the way down.
                              Optional Activities
                              • Jungfrau cog railway - CHF204
                              • Mountain bike hire - CHF40
                              • Schilthorn - CHF130
                              • Jungfraupark Themepark - CHF40
                              • Dinner Cruise on Lake Brienz - CHF60
                                Accommodation
                                Guesthouse (1 nt)
                                Meals
                                1 breakfast
                                Day 14 Interlaken / Swiss Alps
                                On your second free day in this spectacular Alpine setting, you might want to take the funicular railway on an awesome mountain ride up the side of the mighty Eiger, above the glaciers, to the Jungfraujoch and 'the roof of Europe'. Here, at almost 3,500 metres, you can indulge in a few light-headed snowball fights, walk through a carved ice palace or ski, all while taking in the kind of mountain views that few ever get to see - weather permitting of course!

                                Alternatively, mountain bikes can be hired locally and there are plenty of trails, and there are numerous hikes in the area with other funicular railway or cable car connections, and a host of other physical activities. Just ask your group leader about all the options to choose from.

                                Notes: The use of the Jungfrau railway has been known to cause some minor acclimatisation troubles for some travellers, as the difference in altitude between the railway stations of Interlaken and Jungfraujoch is almost 3 km! Take this into account before making the trip.
                                Accommodation
                                Guesthouse (1 nt)
                                Meals
                                1 breakfast
                                Day 15 Bern / Dijon
                                Take the train to Bern (approx 1 hr). Switzerland's attractive capital is an inviting place to spend a few hours. Wander through the medieval old town on cobblestone streets or picnic by the Aare River. Visit the 15th century Gothic cathedral, with 12m high stained glass windows or survey the domain of a genius at Einstein's house.

                                Later today cross the border by train into France and onwards to Dijon (approx 4 hrs). Burgundy is one of France's richest provinces - historically, culturally, gastronomically and economically. Dijon's delightful city centre boasts numerous medieval and renaissance buildings and a warren of narrow little streets. Despite its long history, Dijon has a youthful feel about it due to its large and well-known university.
                                Optional Activities
                                • Einstein's House - CHF6
                                • Munster Cathedral - Free
                                  Accommodation
                                  Hotel (1 nt)
                                  Meals
                                  1 breakfast
                                  Day 16 Beaune / Dijon
                                  Today, take a day trip to the delightful town of Beaune. Beaune is located in the wine region of the Cote d'Or, an area that produces some of the best wines in France and is made up of the Cote de Beaune and Cote de Nuits, where vineyards stretch as far as the eye can see. The best Burgundy wines are grown here in the golden-red soil, hence the name Cote d'Or (Land of Gold). Cycle through the vineyards, with beautiful views of the gentle rolling hills that make up this idyllic landscape. In the evening, back in Dijon, indulge in some wine tasting, relax at one of the many enticing pavement cafes or simply stroll the charming streets.
                                  Included Activities
                                  • Beaune Day Trip
                                  • Bicycle Excursion around Beaune
                                    Optional Activities
                                    • Mustard Museum - EUR10
                                    • Owl Trail - Self Guided Walk - EUR4
                                    • Wineries tour - EUR45
                                      Accommodation
                                      Hotel (1 nt)
                                      Day 17 Reims
                                      Travel north by train to the Champagne region (approx 4 hrs). Set in an agricultural region famous around the world for its sparkling wines, which have been produced here since the days of Dom Perignon, Reims is home to some of the best known 'Grandes Marques' in Champagne and plays an important part in the production of the sparkling wine. It also boasts a historical side - the kings of France were crowned in the city's elaborate gothic Notre Dame Cathedral.
                                      Accommodation
                                      Hotel (1 nt)
                                      Day 18 Reims
                                      After a free morning in Reims, embark on a tour around the caves of Pommery to learn about champagne-making and the remarkable businesswoman this brand is named after.
                                      Included Activities
                                      • Champagne Caves Tour Reims
                                        Optional Activities
                                        • Cathedrale Notre-Dame de Reims - Free
                                        • Palais du Tau - EUR8
                                          Accommodation
                                          Hotel (1 nt)
                                          Meals
                                          1 breakfast
                                          Day 19 Paris
                                          Travel by train to Paris (approx 1 hr). Rich in museums, art galleries, monuments, fashion and fabulous food, Paris offers a wealth of major sights and hidden treasures to discover.
                                          Optional Activities
                                          • Catacombs - EUR10
                                          • Palace of Versailles - EUR15
                                          • Notre Dame Towers - EUR8
                                          • Centre Pompidou - EUR14
                                          • Eiffel Tower - EUR17
                                          • Louvre Museum - EUR15
                                          • Musee d'Orsay - EUR14
                                          • Arc de Triomphe - EUR12
                                          • Palace of Versailles gardens - Free
                                          • Paradis Latin cabaret show - EUR65
                                          • Napoleon's tomb - EUR10
                                          • Fat Tires bike tour - EUR32
                                          • Rodin Museum - EUR10
                                          • Picasso Museum - EUR11
                                          • Da Vinci Code walking tour - EUR25
                                          • Sainte Chapelle & Conciergerie - EUR15
                                          • Urban Adventures - Secret Paris: Cheese, Art, and Local Life - EUR49
                                          • Urban Adventures - Experience Bohemian Paris - EUR49
                                            Accommodation
                                            Hotel (1 nt)
                                            Meals
                                            1 breakfast
                                            Day 20 Paris
                                            You have a free day to be swept off your feet by the city. Explore the world-famous Louvre, where you can see the Mona Lisa and the Venus de Milo. Join the Thinker in his eternal contemplation at the Rodin Museum. Visit the Musee d'Orsay, home to some of the most famous Impressionist paintings. Climb the Eiffel Tower (or take the lift) for some impressive aerial views of Paris. See the Notre Dame Cathedral with its vast Rose Window and menacing gargoyles. Wandering around the Champs-Elysees, the student-filled Latin Quarter and the bohemian Montmartre will give you a good feel for the city. The Tuileries, Plantes and Luxembourg gardens are all excellent places to enjoy a simple baguette with cheese on summer days, or head to a cafe to have a coffee - the French drink it black - and watch the world go by.

                                            Regroup in the evening to enjoy a last dinner together in this romantic city (not included). Afterwards, consider hitting a jazz bar or simply taking a walk to take in more of this enchanting city.

                                            Notes: To avoid queuing at Louvre's ticket windows, you can buy your ticket in advance, but pre-sold tickets can't be collected at the Louvre. The ticket is valid every day except Tuesday (when the museum is closed) and certain bank holidays. Book on this website: www.louvre.fr.
                                            Accommodation
                                            Hotel (1 nt)
                                            Day 21 Paris
                                            There are no activities planned for the final day and you are able to depart the accommodation at any time. As there is so much to see in this magnificent city you may want to consider extending your stay here. We are happy to book additional accommodation for you, subject to availability. Please enquire at the time of booking.
                                            Itinerary disclaimer
                                            ITINERARY CHANGES Occasionally our itineraries are updated during the year to incorporate improvements stemming from past travellers' comments and our own research. The information given in this itinerary may be slightly different to that in the brochure. It's very important that you print and review a final copy of your Trip Notes a couple of days prior to travel, in case there have been changes that affect your plans. If you have any queries, please contact your travel agent or our staff. We are here to help you! Please note that while we operate successful trips in this region throughout the year, some changes may occur in our itineraries due to inclement weather and common seasonal changes to timetables and transport routes. This can happen with little notice so please be prepared for modifications to the route. The order and timing of included activities in each location may also vary from time to time.

                                            OPTIONAL ACTIVITIES: A selection of optional activities are listed in the day-to-day itinerary. This isn't an exhaustive list and should be used as a guide only. Prices are approximate and are for entrance only and don’t include transport to and from the sites or local guides unless indicated. All activities are subject to availability and it may not be possible to do all the activities listed in the time available at each destination. Where activities are considered medium or high risk, we work with operators whose safety and credentials we have sighted and assessed. This means that it is possible that you may find the same activity cheaper with another operator on the ground, however we cannot vouch for the safety or quality of that operator. Activities not listed above have not been assessed by us and as such our staff and leaders are unable to assist you with booking these activities. The decision to partake in any activity not listed is at your own discretion and risk.

                                            MUSEUM OPENING TIMES Please note that many sights, attractions and museums are closed on Mondays.
                                            Physical rating

                                            Included activities
                                            Rome Orientation walk
                                            Lucca Bicycle Tour
                                            Pisa Half Day Trip
                                            Florence Day Trip
                                            Cinque Terre Day Trip
                                            Milan Duomo Roof Visit
                                            Lake Maggiore Cruise
                                            Trummelbach Falls
                                            Beaune Day Trip
                                            Bicycle Excursion around Beaune
                                            Champagne Caves Tour Reims
                                            Important notes
                                            A single supplement is available on this trip, please see trip notes for details.

                                            Group size
                                            Maximum of 12 travellers per group.
                                            Your fellow travellers
                                            GROUP TRAVEL
                                            As you travel on a group trip you will be exposed to all the pleasures and maybe some of the frustrations of travelling in a group. Your fellow travellers will probably come from all corners of the world and likely a range of age groups too. We ask you to be understanding of the various needs and preferences of your group - patience with your fellow travellers is sometimes required for the benefit of everyone's travel experience. Remember too that you have responsibilities to the group. If you are requested to be at a place at a certain time, ensure that you don't keep the rest of the group waiting. We have found time and time again that the very best trips we operate are those where the dynamics within the group work well - this takes just a little effort on your part. Due to privacy reasons we are unable to provide you with contact details and any personal information about your fellow travellers booked on your trip prior to departure.

                                            SINGLE TRAVELLERS:
                                            Our group trips are designed for shared accommodation and don't involve a compulsory single supplement. Single travellers share with people of the same gender in accommodation ranging from twin to multishare. Some of our itineraries have accommodation booked on a mixed gender share basis and where applicable this will be specified in our Trip Notes. On a selection of our trips, you have the option to pay a single supplement to ensure that you have your own accommodation (where available). Please note that this only applies to accommodation during the tour - pre-trip and post-trip accommodation will be booked on a single room basis.

                                            A Single Supplement is available on this trip, please ask your booking agent for more information.
                                            The price of the Single Supplement doesn't include the following nights where single rooms may not be available. If a single room becomes available at check-in for these nights, there may be the option to upgrade to a single room and pay the surcharge locally for that night:
                                            Days 2-5 Lucca
                                            Days 6-7 Cinque Terre
                                            Days 12-14 Swiss Alps
                                            Accommodation
                                            Guesthouse (3nt), Hotel (13nt), Private apartment (4nt)
                                            OCCASIONAL ALTERNATIVE ACCOMMODATION
                                            The style of accommodation indicated in the day-to-day itinerary is a guideline. On rare occasions, alternative arrangements may need to be made due to the lack of availability of rooms in our usual accommodation. A similar standard of accommodation will be used in these instances.

                                            TWIN SHARE BASIS
                                            Accommodation on this trip is on a twin share basis (unless noted otherwise in the day-to-day itinerary). Please note there may be times where facilities will be shared rather than ensuite and rare occasions when you share a room with passengers travelling on different Intrepid trips than your own.

                                            CHECK-IN TIME
                                            Throughout the trip we request that our hotels prepare rooms in time for our arrival, especially if we're arriving prior to normal check-in time. However this isn't always possible which means we won't be able to check-in immediately on arrival at some hotels. Instead, we can store our luggage and explore our new destination.

                                            PRE/POST TRIP ACCOMMODATION
                                            If you've purchased pre-trip or post-trip accommodation (if available), you may be required to change rooms from your trip accommodation for these extra nights.

                                            FACILITIES
                                            Your accommodation may not always have private en suite facilities or air-conditioning. European hotels generally don't provide kettles or fridges.
                                            Meals introduction
                                            While travelling with us you'll experience the vast array of wonderful food available in the world. Your group leader will be able to suggest restaurants to try during your trip. To give you maximum flexibility in deciding where, what and with whom to eat, generally not all meals are included in the trip price. This also gives you more budgeting flexibility. As a rule our groups tend to eat together to enable you to taste a larger variety of dishes and enjoy each others company. There's no obligation to do this though.

                                            Vegetarians might find the menu selection less varied than they would see at home. Vegetarianism is not as common in this region and generally the choices are basic, involving vegetables, soups, salads, bread, cheese, fruit, yoghurt, eggs etc. Vegans and those on gluten-free diets may find this region very challenging and may need to supplement meals with their own supplies from supermarkets and markets. Wherever possible we will cater for dietary needs for any included meals, but there may be times when those with special requirements may need to provide their own.

                                            There are some basic breakfasts included on this trip which may simply include bread/toast or pastries, butter, jam, coffee/tea/juice (or similar).
                                            Meals
                                            10 breakfasts
                                            Transport
                                            Train, Public bus, Ferry, Bicycle, Tram, Metro

                                            TRANSPORT IN EUROPE
                                            Half the fun of travel is the travelling itself, that's why we like to travel the local way – whether that means mingling with commuters on a train in Spain, cycling past a historic chateau in France, or encountering the world's most extravagant public transport system on the Moscow Metro. In Europe, you are guaranteed to travel by genuine local public transport wherever possible, which puts you right in the centre of the action.
                                            Money matters
                                            CURRENCY
                                            The official currency of Switzerland is the Swiss Franc (CHF, or sometimes abbreviated as SFr), while Italy and France have adopted the common currency of the European Union, the Euro (EUR).

                                            CASH
                                            The most convenient and cheapest way to acquire money in Europe is via an Automated Teller Machine (ATM) or Bancomat as they are often referred to. Check with your bank in advance concerning the suitability of your account / card overseas and any international fees that will be applied. You can withdraw local currencies easily at airports, major train stations and most city centres, but be sure to bring some extra emergency cash in a major currency that can be exchanged if the ATMs are not functioning. When leaving home don't forget your PIN and make sure you know the telephone number for cancelling your card if it is stolen. Keep this in a safe place. Credit cards are not always accepted in stores and restaurants. We recommend you carry some cash to pay for restaurant bills and other services.

                                            SPENDING MONEY
                                            When it comes to spending money on the trip, every traveller is a little different. You know your spending habits better than we do, so please budget a sensible amount for things like meals not included, drinks, shopping, optional activities and laundry. It's always better to bring a little more than you think you'll need. Also make sure you've read your trip details thoroughly so you know what's included in the trip price and what isn't. This should make budgeting a little easier. You'll find this info in the Inclusions section of your Essential Trip Information (that's this document).

                                            BUDGET
                                            Please budget for additional meals and expenses while on your trip. We suggest EUR 735.00 for meals not included on this trip. Our suggestion is based on past traveller feedback but you may choose to spend more or less.

                                            TIPPING
                                            If you're happy with the services provided a tip - though not compulsory - is appropriate. While it may not be customary to you, it's of great significance to the people who will take care of you during your travels, inspires excellent service, and is an entrenched feature of the tourism industry across many Intrepid destinations. The following amounts are per person suggestions based on local considerations and feedback from our past travellers: In local markets and basic restaurants and cafes - round your bill up to the nearest €1. In more up-market restaurants we suggest 5% to 10% of your bill. Throughout your trip you may at times have a local guide in addition to your tour leader. We suggest €2-€3 per day for local guides. You may also have a range of drivers on your trip. Some may be with you for a short journey while others may be with you for several days. We would suggest a higher tip for those more involved with the group, however we suggest €1-€2 per day for drivers. You may also consider tipping your tour leader for outstanding service throughout your trip. The amount is entirely a personal preference, however as a guideline €2-€4 per person, per day can be used. Of course you are free to tip more or less as you see fit, depending on your perception of service quality and the length of your trip. Remember, a tip is not compulsory and should only be given when you receive excellent service. In total, we recommend you budget approx €5-€10 per day of your trip to cover tipping.

                                            EMERGENCY FUNDS
                                            Please also make sure you have access to an additional US$500, to be used when unforeseen incidents or circumstances outside our control (e.g. a natural disaster, civil unrest, strike action or an outbreak of bird flu) necessitate a change to our planned route.
                                            Group leader
                                            All Intrepid group trips are accompanied by one of our group leaders. The aim of the group leader is to take the hassle out of your travels and to help you have the best trip possible. Intrepid endeavours to provide the services of an experienced leader however, due to the seasonality of travel, rare situations may arise where your leader is new to a particular region or training other group leaders.

                                            Your leader will provide information on the places you are travelling through, offer suggestions for things to do and see, recommend great local eating venues and introduce you to our local friends. While not being guides in the traditional sense you can expect them to have a broad general knowledge of the places visited on the trip, including historical, cultural, religious and social aspects. At Intrepid we aim to support local guides who have specialised knowledge of the regions we visit. If you were interested in delving deeper into the local culture at a specific site or location then your leader can recommend a local guide service in most of the main destinations of your trip.
                                            Safety
                                            Many national governments provide a regularly updated advice service on safety issues involved with international travel. We recommend that you check your government's advice for their latest travel information before departure and ensure that your travel insurance covers you for all areas your itinerary covers. Please refer to our website's safety page for links to major travel advisories and updates on safety issues affecting our trip.

                                            We strongly recommend the use of a neck wallet or money belt while travelling, for the safe-keeping of your passport, air tickets, cash and other valuable items. Leave your valuable jewellery at home - you won't need it while travelling. Many of our hotels have safety deposit boxes, which is the most secure way of storing your valuables. A lock is recommended for securing your luggage.

                                            Your leader will accompany you on all included activities, however during your trip you'll have some free time to pursue your own interests, relax and take it easy or explore at your leisure. While your leader will assist you with the available options in a given location, please note that any optional activities you undertake are not part of your Intrepid itinerary, and Intrepid makes no representations about the safety of the activity or the standard of the operators running them. Please use your own good judgement when selecting an activity in your free time. Please also note that your Leader has the authority to amend or cancel any part of the trip itinerary if it's deemed necessary due to safety concerns.

                                            For more details on the type of conditions and safety standards you can expect on your trip, please refer to Intrepid's operational safety policy on our website. We recommend that you take a moment to read through this information before travelling, and would appreciate any feedback on how well it's being implemented in the field:

                                            http://www.intrepidtravel.com/safety

                                            FIRE PRECAUTIONS:
                                            Please be aware that local laws governing tourism facilities in this region differ from those in your home country and not all the accommodation which we use has a fire exit, fire extinguishers or smoke alarms.

                                            TRAFFIC AND DRIVING ON THE OTHER SIDE OF THE ROAD:
                                            Depending on where you come from please note that drivers in this part of the world may drive on the opposite side of the road from what you are used to. Look both ways before crossing any road. Traffic can be a little more chaotic than you might be used to at home. Be aware!

                                            BIKE HELMETS:
                                            Please note that helmets are not always provided for sightseeing on bicycles.

                                            PETTY THEFT AND PERSONAL SAFETY:
                                            While travelling there is always the risk of pick-pocketing and petty theft, particularly in the more touristy cities. We recommend that you exercise caution when walking alone at night and encourage you to walk together and only on main, well-lit thoroughfares. Be particularly vigilant on public transport. Simple measures like carrying your day pack on your front, not hanging your bag over the back of your chair or on the floor and wearing a money belt will reduce any chance that your valuables should go missing.

                                            SEAT BELTS:
                                            Please be aware that local laws governing transportation safety may differ from those in your home country and not all the transport which we use is able to provide seat belts.
                                            Joining point
                                            Hotel Stella
                                            Via Castelfidardo, 51
                                            Rome
                                            ITALY
                                            Phone: +39 064441078
                                            Joining point description
                                            Hotel Stella is centrally located near Termini Station and the biggest park in Rome, Villa Borghese. The hotel is a former 19th century mansion. All rooms have private facilities, air conditioning, room safe, TV and hairdrier.
                                            www.hotelstellaroma.it/en
                                            During your stay in Rome you may be asked to complete a City of Rome visitor tax exemption form.
                                            Joining point instructions
                                            Hotel Stella Rome is located within walking distance of Central Station, 'Roma Termini'.

                                            From the Fiumicino Airport, you can follow the signs from the arrival hall to the train station in order to catch the 'Leonardo Express' - the direct Fiumicino-Stazione Termini train costs around EUR15. For those coming from the Ciampino airport, TERRAVISION operates a bus link from Ciampino to Termini Station, this costs EUR8 one way.

                                            Exit Termini train station on the right side, take via Marsala, a street adjacent the station. Take the first street on your right, via Solferino. Enter piazza Indipendenza. At the end of it on the left you will find via Castelfidardo, hotel Stella is at number 51.

                                            For those not wishing to walk, then a short taxi ride would be suitable from Termini station.

                                            Pre booked arrival transfer from the airport: If you have pre booked an arrival transfer, your transfer driver will be holding a board with the Intrepid Logo or your name at the arrivals hall., in front of the airport's exit doors. In case of flight cancellations, changes or if you are not able find the driver, please contact the emergency phone number:+39 335 568 5666.
                                            Finish point
                                            Hotel Des Arts - Bastille
                                            2 Rue Godefroy Cavaignac
                                            Paris
                                            FRANCE
                                            Phone: 33 143797257
                                            Fax: 33 143790660
                                            Finish point description
                                            Hotel des Arts is a small boutique-style property ideally located in the district of la Bastille.

                                            Rooms offer a safe, free WiFi, direct dial telephone, satellite TV and a small en-suite bathroom.

                                            The hotel also offers a 24hr front desk, elevator and luggage storage facilities.
                                            Finishing point instructions
                                            If you are making your own way to the airport the hotel will be able to help book you an airport shuttle or taxi. Please ask at reception.

                                            Pre booked departure transfer to the airport: You will be collected at the hotel reception 3 hours before your flight departure time. In case of flight cancellations, changes or if you are not able find the driver, please contact the emergency phone number: +33 (0) 615 035 427
                                            Emergency contact
                                            While we always endeavour to provide the best possible holiday experience, due to the nature of travel and the areas we visit sometimes things can and do go wrong. Should any issue occur while you are on your trip, it is imperative that you discuss this with your group leader or our local representative straight away so that they can do their best to rectify the problem and save any potential negative impact on the rest of your trip.

                                            We recognise that there may be times when your group leader/local partner may not be able to resolve a situation to your satisfaction - if this is the case, please ask the leader to speak to their direct manager.

                                            You may also choose to provide details in your online feedback, which we ask you to complete within 30 days of the end of your trip. But we do ask you to be aware that it is very difficult for us to provide any practical help after the trip is complete.

                                            For general contact details please use the following page: http://www.intrepidtravel.com/ourtrips/contact/

                                            In the case of a genuine crisis or emergency, Intrepid's Europe Office can be reached on the number listed below:

                                            Peak Europe: +49 8677 9186 657
                                            Visas
                                            Visas are the responsibility of the individual traveller. Entry requirements can change at any time, so it's important that you check for the latest information. Please visit the relevant consular website of the country or countries you’re visiting for detailed and up-to-date visa information specific to your nationality. Your consultant will also be happy to point you in the right direction with acquiring visas. Visas can take several weeks to process, so familiarise yourself with any requirements as soon as you have booked your trip to allow for processing time.

                                            Visas for Italy, Switzerland and France are not required for passport holders of the European Union, Australia, New Zealand, USA and Canada. All other nationalities should check with the relevant authorities.

                                            CROSSING BORDERS
                                            With the so called "Schengen Agreement" border controls between many European countries have been abolished. However in special situations passports may still be checked. Passport stamps are no longer issued.
                                            What to take
                                            PACKING
                                            On this trip you must pack as lightly as possible because you will be expected to carry your own bag and although you won't be required to walk long distances with your luggage (max 30 minutes), we strongly recommend keeping the weight under 10kg / 22lb. Most travellers carry their luggage in a backpack, although an overnight bag with a shoulder strap would suffice if you travel lightly. Smaller bags or backpacks with wheels are convenient although we recommend your bag has carry straps to accommodate the cobbled streets, uneven surfaces, stairs and steps you are lightly to encounter while carrying your luggage. You'll also need a day pack/bag to carry water and a camera etc for day trips. You can find Intrepid's Ultimate Packing List on our website. It should be used as a guide only and isn't intended to be a complete packing list.

                                            http://www.intrepidtravel.com/pdf/trips/packinglist.pdf

                                            TRAVELLING ON LOCAL TRANSPORT
                                            It's important that your bags can be locked, as on local transport it may be necessary that your luggage gets stowed separately (and unattended). The smaller your bag the better for you and other passengers, for when it comes to travelling on local buses and trains it's often only the smaller bags that will fit into the storage areas inside the bus or your cabin. To ensure maximum comfort, try to pack small and light.

                                            LUGGAGE STORAGE
                                            Where Intrepid covers the cost of luggage storage during included day trips, we allow for one bag/backpack only, so it's advisable that you travel lightly and keep luggage to a limit of one item (plus your day pack). Extra luggage storage will be at your own expense.

                                            WATER BOTTLE:
                                            Consider bringing your own water bottle to refill along the way. The sale of bottled water contributes to an enormous environmental problem around the world. In addition to the water in bottles, the production of a 1 litre plastic bottle takes 2 litres of water and 200ml of oil. A large proportion ends up in limited landfill or discarded in waterways and natural environments. Although it can be difficult to avoid bottled water when travelling, please consider water purification techniques such as iodine or micropur and use the water dispensers which are provided at some of our accommodation. When unable to avoid bottled water it is better to buy the largest available and distribute into your smaller bottle for the day.

                                            On some of our trips in Europe it is possible to purchase responsibly sourced reusable water bottles. Thirty per cent of the cost of each bottle is donated to the Intrepid Foundation, specifically to the Support to Life project, which offers humanitarian assistance to Syrian Refugees in Turkey. Please ask your leader for further information regarding this initiative and the availability of the bottles.
                                            Climate and seasonal information
                                            HOT WEATHER
                                            Summer temperatures can reach up to 40 degrees Celsius, which can be uncomfortable for those not used to the heat. Please consider the time of the year you wish to travel and your suitability to that season.
                                            Health
                                            All Intrepid travellers need to be in good physical health in order to participate fully on this trip. When selecting your trip please make sure you have read through the itinerary carefully and assess your ability to cope with our style of travel. Please note that if, in the opinion of our group leader or local guide, any traveller is unable to complete the itinerary without undue risk to themselves and/or the rest of the group, Intrepid reserves the right to exclude them from all or part of a trip without refund.

                                            You should consult your doctor for up-to-date medical travel information or for any necessary vaccinations and anti-malarial requirements before departure. We recommend that you carry a first aid kit as well as any personal medical requirements (including a spare pair of glasses) as they may not easily be obtained at the locations on this trip. For legal reasons our leaders and guides are prohibited from administering any type of drugs including headache tablets and antibiotics. Please ensure that you are adequately prepared.
                                            Travel insurance
                                            Travel insurance is compulsory for all our trips. We require that, at a minimum, you are covered for medical expenses including emergency repatriation. We strongly recommend that the policy also covers personal liability, cancellation, curtailment and loss of luggage and personal effects.

                                            When travelling on a trip, you won't be permitted to join the group until evidence of travel insurance and the insurance company's 24 hour emergency contact number has been seen by your leader.

                                            If you have credit card insurance your group leader will require details of the participating insurer/underwriter, the level of coverage, policy number and emergency contact number rather than the bank's name and credit card details. Please contact your bank for these details prior to arriving in-country.

                                            http://www.intrepidtravel.com/insurance.php
                                            A couple of rules
                                            Illegal drugs will not be tolerated on our trips. Possessing or using drugs not only contravenes the laws of the land, but also puts the rest of the group at risk. Smoking marijuana and opium is a part of local culture in some parts of the world but is not acceptable for Intrepid travellers. Intrepid's philosophy of travel is one of respect towards everyone we encounter and in particular, the local people who make our destinations such special places. The exploitation of prostitutes is completely contrary to this philosophy. Our group leader has the right to expel any member of the group if drugs are found in their possession or if they use prostitutes.

                                            Everyone has the right to feel safe and secure on their trip. We don’t tolerate any form of sexual harassment at Intrepid, either between passengers or involving our leaders or local operators. Sexual relationships (consensual or otherwise) between a leader and a passenger are unacceptable. If you ever feel another person is behaving inappropriately please inform us immediately by contacting the emergency contact number detailed in these trip notes.
                                            Responsible Travel
                                            We believe strongly in low impact or rather positive impact tourism. Broadly speaking this means that we try to minimise the negative aspects of tourism on the local cultures and environments that we visit and highlight the positive aspects. Please visit our website for further details and suggestions on how you can be a responsible traveller.

                                            http://www.intrepidtravel.com/ourtrips/rt/responsibletraveller

                                            DRESS CODE
                                            In general, there are few dress restrictions in Europe. Note when visiting churches, monasteries or other religious sites modest dress is required - shorts or skimpy tops may not be permitted, for both men and women.

                                            The Intrepid Foundation
                                            Since Intrepid Travel commenced operating in 1989 we've been committed to giving something back to the communities we visit. One way has been through our support for local humanitarian, development and conservation projects. Many of our travellers want to contribute something too. Whilst it is often tempting to give hand-outs to those less fortunate, this has the potential to promote a culture of begging and dependency. Handouts are not a sustainable way for individuals or communities to live. That’s why we established The Intrepid Foundation – to make it easier for travellers wishing to give back to communities in an effective and meaningful way.

                                            The Intrepid Foundation is a not-for-profit fund offering a selection of excellent grassroots organisations which you can contribute to. All donations to The Intrepid Foundation will be matched by Intrepid Travel dollar for dollar (up to AU$1,000 per donor and a total of AU$400,000 for all donors in each financial year, excluding emergency appeals). And every cent gets there as Intrepid Travel pays for all the administration costs. Donating is simple and secure. Please ask your leader for information on the projects we support through The Intrepid Foundation or go to our website:

                                            http://www.theintrepidfoundation.org/

                                            PECORA NERA
                                            Pecora Nera (The Black Sheep) restaurant in Lucca is taking positive action for the inclusion of disabled persons both socially and in the workplace, favouring the diffusion of a different image of disability - one from which the potential of the individual person emerges, and is given value. The project aims to facilitate an experience that can be recreated in other restaurants and commercial activities in the region. Pecora Nera employs disabled or differently-abled people as waiting staff and cooks. Simple strategies are employed to help them in these roles:
                                            - Checklist-style copies of the menus are used by the waiting staff so they can tick the appropriate box rather than having to write individual items down
                                            - Tables do not have numbers, they each have a different and brightly-coloured carved wooden figure on them to help the staff distinguish between the tables.
                                            Intrepid proudly supports this restaurant, and we encourage travellers to dine here. Your group leader can provide more information and help you with a reservation.

                                            Feedback
                                            After your travels, we want to hear from you! We rely on your feedback. We read it carefully. Feedback helps us understand what we are doing well and what we could be doing better. It allows us to make improvements for future travellers.

                                            http://www.intrepidtravel.com/feedback

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