Rome to Paris Trip Notes

Rome to Paris

These trip notes are valid for departures from 01 January 2016 to 28 October 2016. View the trip notes for departures between 01 January 2017 - 31 December 2017

Last Modified: 01 Sep 2016
Rome to Paris
Trip code: ZMSP
Validity: 01 Jan 2016 to 28 Oct 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
Is this trip right for you?
- The primary means of transportation on this trip is by train. Train are a fast way to cross long distances, allowing you to avoid traffic jams and arrive right into the city centre. They are comfortable and often include 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 or cases at home and bring a backpack instead.
- Summer temperatures can be very high 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, and work up an appetite for incredible feasts of delicious local ingredients
- Wander around Rome's famous landmarks including the Colosseum, Vatican City, Sistine Chapel, St Peter's Basilica and much more. This is a city that bucket lists were made for
- Savour fine French fare in Dijon and taste the local wine in a famous vineyard of Burgundy, a place where wine is so much more than just a drink
- Be awed by the picture-perfect setting of Interlaken, with the stunning snow-capped peaks of the Swiss Alps as a backdrop
- Soak up the incredible lakeside scenery of Stresa and Lucerne, getting the best of the Italian and Swiss countryside
- Raise a glass in Reims with a taste of the home of champagne
- Two nights in Paris affords you time to see the city’s world famous sights and also discover some of its hidden treasures at a relaxed pace

Day 1 Rome
Buongiorno! Welcome to Italy. 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. Your Italian adventure will begin with a welcome meeting at 7pm tonight – check with reception to confirm the time and place. We'll be collecting insurance details and next of kin information at this meeting, so please have these on hand. If you're going to be late, please inform hotel reception. If you can't arrange a flight that will arrive in time, 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). There are no activities planned before the meeting, so if you arrive early there are plenty of things to keep you busy. Maybe save the unmissable sights for tomorrow morning and today do as the Romans do – sip an espresso at one of the tiny streetside cafes and sample the many flavours of gelato that colour the city. For those captivated by the 'Eternal City', throw a coin into the Trevi Fountain to ensure a return visit to Rome.
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
    Hotel (1 nt)
    Day 2 Rome / Lucca
    Enjoy some free time in Rome or, if you wish, join your group leader for an orientation walk, taking in some of the best-known sights of Rome like the Colosseum, the Spanish Steps and the Roman Forum. 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 a breath-taking panorama over Bella Roma. If there's time, visit the Vatican Museum and Sistine Chapel. In the afternoon, you'll travel by train from Rome to Lucca (approximately 2 hours). Lucca is one of Tuscany's real hidden gems, with centuries-old buildings, beautiful churches, charming piazzas and narrow streets within the ancient city ramparts. You’ll be captivated by this medieval town, which simply radiates charm. In Lucca, you’ll stay in some unique accommodation – your own private apartments. There are several separate apartments located near the city centre so you may be a short walk away from your other group members and your leader. The apartments are a real treat. Staying in the city centre allows easy access to all the sights, restaurants and bars, all an easy stroll from your front door. Each apartment has 2-3 rooms with a shared bathroom.

    Notes: Check the Vatican website ( for updated information on when you can visit. Tickets for the Vatican Museum can be booked online at: Alternatively, the Galleria Borghese can be booked online at: The best day to visit will be Day 1 or the morning of Day 2. In order to allow enough time in the museum and to avoid the crowds it is recommended to start the museum visit as doors open. Please note that prebooked tickets are not required if you just want to visit St Peter's Basilica and its dome.
    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
        Private apartment (1 nt)
        1 breakfast
        Day 3 Lucca / Pisa
        Set off on a cycling tour following the scenic Serchio River through the Tuscan countryside (4 kilometres round the walls that are now a tree-lined avenue, and 14 kilometres by the river, approximately 3 hours). There are cafes and plenty of spots for a Tuscan picnic along the route. Lucca is a great base for a later outing to nearby Pisa (approximately 30 minutes by local train). Here there's ample time to visit the quirky world-famous Leaning Tower, as well as the Duomo (Piazza dei Miracoli, once the largest in Europe) and Pisa Baptistry (please note that it's not always possible to climb the tower). The tower was built in the 12th century, but its foundation was on shifting sand and clay, meaning that it now leans at an angle of 4 degrees (after restoration and stabilising work). Wander the shopping streets, from high-end boutiques to speciality book and antiques stores, and perhaps enjoy an aperitif. Back in Lucca, the kitchen apartment is fully equipped and you can buy your own beautiful local ingredients and supplies for meals. During their stay, some of our groups make Italian feasts with produce from around the area. Our apartments are not hotels, so there's no reception, room service or cleaning service every day, no televisions or washing machines, but there is plenty of charm and you just cannot beat the location.

        Notes: The bike ride may take place today or on Day 4 or 5, depending on the weather forecast. Your leader will advise closer to the date.
        Included Activities
        • Lucca Bicycle Tour
        • Pisa Half Day Trip
          Private apartment (1 nt)
          Day 4 Lucca / Florence
          Today, hop aboard a local train for a day trip to Florence, Italy's ‘outdoor museum’ (approximately 1.5 hours). Florence, the cultural heart of Tuscany, bursts with religious treasures and Renaissance masterpieces. The minds and talents of the Medicis, Leonardo da Vinci, Raphael, Brunelleschi, Machiavelli, Donatello and Michelangelo all flourished here. It's impossible to see everything in this Renaissance wonderland, however, so take your time and enjoy it. The principal sights are easily discovered on foot – the Pitti Palace, the Ponte Vecchio, the Arno River front, the many statues and monuments of the Piazza della Signoria, the Palazzo Vecchio, the 13th-century Duomo (with its fiery depiction of the Last Judgement), the Baptistry and the Belltower, and the Santa Croce Church. There’ll be time to visit the Uffizi, one of the world's oldest art galleries and a work of art itself, see Michelangelo's famous statue of David in the Galleria dell'Accademia, and shop in the many markets and chic boutiques. Back in Lucca, maybe end the day by heading to a local bar for a refreshing Prosecco and a delicious focaccia with finocchiona salami and pecorino cheese, in the shadow of the Palazzo Pretorio.

          Note: Florentine State Museums can all be booked in advance, online at We suggest that you book in advance (your leader can be 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 ( has everything you need to know. 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. Importantly, 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
              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. Wander to the former Roman amphitheatre found off Via Fillungo. The remains of the amphitheatre are gone, but the medieval houses now standing in its place follow the outline where the spectator stands once were. Here, in what’s now called Piazza dell'Anfiteatro, there are many outdoor cafes where you can sit down and see the world go by and do a spot of people watching. Also here, 2,000 years ago, Julius Caesar, Pompey and Crassus formed a coalition government to rule Rome. Make sure you also head to Foro Square to see the majestically constructed San Michele church, built over the ancient Roman forum and rich in artwork, and make a stop at the 14th century Duomo di San Martino, a splendid example of Romanesque architecture. Inside you’ll find the tomb of and monument to Ilaria del Carretto, carved by Jacopo della Quercia – it’s a masterpiece that dates back to the 15th century. Also, it might be 25 flights of stair to climb to the top of the Guinigi Tower, but the views are worth it. The tower also makes for a great sight in itself as it has trees growing on its roof!
              Private apartment (1 nt)
              Day 6 La Spezia
              Travel by train to La Spezia (approximately 3 hours), an important naval base that’s now the gateway to the gorgeous Cinque Terre, or ‘Five lands’ in English. A medieval port town whose name is derived from its historic importance in the spice trade, La Spezia is your base for exploring the nearby stunning stretch of coast known as the Cinque Terre (approximately 30 minutes by train). The name comes from the five tiny villages – Monterosso, Vernazza, Corniglia, Manarola and Riomaggiore – whose position, wedged into a series of coves between sheer cliffs, makes it one of the highlights of the whole of Italy. 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 and walk around the pedestrian zone on Via del Prione to the gardens along the harbour. Or opt to take another ferry to Lerici, another small village across the Bay of Poets dominated by its castle, for dinner.
              Hotel (1 nt)
              Day 7 Cinque Terre / La Spezia
              This morning venture out on the footpaths of Cinque Terre, a region of Italy famed for its coastline and pastel villages on mountains that plunge into the sea. The footpaths that run between the villages were once the only way to travel in the region, and take you through olive groves, vineyards and on to idyllic, breath-taking vistas. If you're feeling energetic, walking the entire path (12 kilometres, approximately 5 hours) will give you the best taste of the villages and countryside, though it will require a good level of fitness. You can also choose to walk just a few sections, which will still unveil a great amount of majestic scenery. Some sections of path can be difficult, as there are challenging uphill stretches, narrow paths, steep cliffs and foot bridges. Please remember to bring comfortable footwear such as trainers or light hiking shoes. 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 speciality in this area and makes a great start to lunch. The rest of the day is free. In the evening, there's no better way to recover from your day of walking with more indulgence in delicious Mediterranean food.

              Notes: Due to recent landslides in the area it is currently not possible to walk 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. Due to safety reasons some sections of any path can be closed at short notice.

              Cinque Terre path sections:
              - Riomaggiore to Manarola (the original Via dell'Amore) is currently closed until further notice. The alternative is a 1 hour inland path, 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 1.5 hours on a rocky path.
              - Vernazza to Monterosso is more challenging but arguably the most scenic and takes about 2 hours on a rocky path.
              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
                  Hotel (1 nt)
                  1 breakfast
                  Day 8 Milan / Stresa
                  Travel by train to Milan (approximately 3 hours), Italy's second largest city and the capital of Lombardy, Italy's wealthiest province. You’ll stop here for a few hours. In this most fashionable of cities, this is the place for stylish shopping and cafes – Milanese specialities! Explore the city's historic centre, visit the city's most famous building, the Gothic Duomo, and walk between its rooftop sculptures, admiring the views and the stunning Gothic terrace. Most will want to visit Leonardo Da Vinci's masterpiece, The Last Supper, if there's time – see below for details. In the afternoon, leave Milan by train for your next destination, Stresa (approximately 1.5 hours). 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: Many visitors to Milan will want to take a visit to Leonardo Da Vinci's masterpiece, The Last Supper. Your leader can't assist with tickets to this. 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. 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: or 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
                      Hotel (1 nt)
                      1 breakfast
                      Day 9 Lago Maggiore / Stresa
                      Today board a local ferry for a scenic trip on Lake Maggiore to the enchanting Borromeo Isles. On Isola Bella the Borromean family employed the most talented architects and gardeners to transform a rocky crag into the setting for a magnificent baroque palace and Italianate gardens. Visit the romantic palatial residence, built in the 17th century by Carlo 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, like Isola dei Pescatori, and if there's time to spare, visit the markets and churches in one of the lakeside hamlets. Later in your free time, you can 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
                          Hotel (1 nt)
                          1 breakfast
                          Day 10 Lucerne
                          Farewell Italy and take a spectacular train journey to Lucerne in Switzerland (approximately 6 hours). 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 impossibly quaint covered wooden bridges. There are also a number of medieval defensive towers along the city walls that can give you great views over this picturesque town and its surroundings. In the tiny streets of old town (Altstadt), there’s often a craft market and dozens of shops full of unique handmade goods. The bridge that crosses the Reuss River is known as the Kapellbrücke, and if you look up while crossing it you’ll see fascinating 400-year-old triangular roof panels painted with mythical and historical scenes. When you arrive, you can walk along the bridges, stroll eastwards along the Rathausquai and the Schweizerhofquai, and admire the setting sun over the lake. This evening, maybe enjoy an aperitif with a view of the lake and seek out classic Swiss cuisine in some traditional surroundings.
                          Hotel (1 nt)
                          1 breakfast
                          Day 11 Lucerne
                          Today is a free day to explore the area around Lucerne. Perhaps begin with a walk up Lowenstrasse (Lion Street) to visit the Lion Monument, a touching rock-face carving of a dying lion that commemorates the 800 Swiss mercenaries who were killed defending Louis XVI during the French Revolution. Explore the old town streets or take a walk along the lakeside paths – one leads to famed 19th century composer Richard Wagner's former villa, which is now a museum. If you’d like to take things a little easier then there are numerous ferries that criss-cross the lake and dock at scenic stops along the shore. To explore the wonderful alpine scenery that surrounds the city, maybe take the world’s oldest cog railway up the 1,800-metre Rigi Mountain, or take the world’s steepest cog railway to 2,100-metre Pilatus peak. Also known as Dragon Mountain because the sunset behind the peak often glows like dragon’s breath, Pilatus peak has magnificent views on a clear day that reveal most of Switzerland. You can hike various trails around the summit and then take the cable car back down. For something different, there’s the quirky exhibits of the National Transport Museum – don’t be fooled by the dour sounding name, this is one of Europe’s most popular and fun museums.
                          Optional Activities
                          • Mount Pilatus cable car - CHF95
                          • Transport Museum - CHF30
                            Hotel (1 nt)
                            Day 12 Interlaken / Swiss Alps
                            A train journey through villages and spectacular alpine scenery today brings you to the Bernese Oberland and the town of Interlaken (approximately 4 hours), a pretty town that sits between lakes Thun and Brienz. Upon arrival, travel to nearby steep-cliffed valley in Lauterbrunnen and enjoy a walk through characteristic Swiss countryside to view the magnificent Trummelbach Falls. Here 10 glacier waterfalls meet in one spot to produce 20,000 litres per second of water that corkscrews through the mountain. You can visit underground galleries and climb up steps that trace the path of the mountain stream that has carved a waterfall inside the rock walls. There's plenty of time 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
                              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. This was the mountain-top location of villain Blofeld’s lair in the film ‘On Her Majesty’s Secret Service’. 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 – suspended high over rocky outcroppings, jewel-like ponds and gorgeous hiking trails – that can get you there in under an hour. You'll also have an opportunity to visit the major ski resort villages on the way down. You can descend to the village of Murren and then take a cable car that gracefully hangs over a cliff to the village of Stechelberg. From here Staubbach Falls, the highest in Switzerland, will reveal themselves – 1,000 feet of torrenting water. The village of Stechelberg itself is a watery wonderland, with 70 waterfalls cascading down from the mountaintops. Spend the day soaking up these wow-worthy views of snow-capped peaks, spine-like ridges and glistening lakes.
                              Optional Activities
                              • Jungfrau cog railway - CHF204
                              • Mountain bike hire - CHF40
                              • Schilthorn - CHF130
                              • Jungfraupark Themepark - CHF40
                              • Dinner Cruise on Lake Brienz - CHF60
                                Guesthouse (1 nt)
                                1 breakfast
                                Day 14 Interlaken / Swiss Alps
                                On your second free day in this spectacular Alpine setting, you might want to take the cogwheel railway on an awesome mountain ride up the side of the mighty Eiger, above the glaciers, to the Jungfraujoch and 'the roof of Europe'. Much of the six-mile route to the top is through a tunnel, with a stop to look out through an observation window in the Eiger. 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, as far as other peaks in France and Germany – weather permitting of course! Alternatively, mountain bikes can be hired locally and there are plenty of trails – there’s a very beautiful route from the town along Lake Thun as well as opportunities to get up higher and do downhill riding. There are also 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 kilometres! Take this into account before making the trip.
                                Guesthouse (1 nt)
                                1 breakfast
                                Day 15 Bern / Dijon
                                Travel by train through the Swiss capital of Bern (approximately 1 hour). 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 and its 12 metre 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 (approximately 4 hours). Discover one of France’s wealthiest provinces in the region of Burgundy. Dijon was once one of the greatest centres of art, learning, and science in Europe, with rulers that rivalled the King of France and monasteries that threatened the supremacy of the Pope. Today it retains a dynamic and elegant air, along with a youthful feel thanks to its large and well-known university. Perhaps visit the Mustard Museum in your spare time here to learn about the history and gastronomy behind this world famous condiment. At first it may not sound like the most exciting activity, but this is in fact a great attraction! In the afternoon you can take a walk around the city on a route called the ‘Owl’s Trail’, finding medieval and Renaissance architecture dotted on every street. A handy little booklet takes your to 22 of Dijon’s historic monuments. Be sure to try some local cuisine in the evening, as this region is famed for culinary delights such as beef bourguignon and coq au vin.
                                Optional Activities
                                • Einstein's House - CHF6
                                • Munster Cathedral - Free
                                  Hotel (1 nt)
                                  1 breakfast
                                  Day 16 Beaune / Dijon
                                  Absorb the medieval heart of the city, like at the café-lined Place de la Libération, this morning, then take a day trip to Beaune, the delightful walled town in the centre of Burgundy (approximately 40 minutes). 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. If you stop by a vineyard you’ll learn about the importance of ‘terroir’ in Burgundy, and discover how wine is the heart and soul of the region. More than just a drink, it’s a philosophy, a religion, a love. Maybe continue this gourmet indulgence when you return to Dijon this evening, perhaps choosing to take another chance to feast on Burgundy’s classy cuisine, to 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
                                      Hotel (1 nt)
                                      Day 17 Reims
                                      Travel north by train to the Champagne region (approximately 4 hours) to raise a glass in Reims. 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 – 25 kings of France were crowned in the city's elaborate Notre Dame Cathedral, a gothic masterpiece that’s a World Heritage site. The cathedral stands out alongside the Art Deco architecture that was part of the city’s rebuilding after the First World War. The city is also a great example of France’s fantastic food – there’s the three-times-a-week Les Halles du Boulingrin covered market and mouth-watering gourmet shops lining the Rue de Mars. Tonight you’ll surely get your first taste of the local drop at one of the champagne bars tucked around the city.
                                      Hotel (1 nt)
                                      Day 18 Reims
                                      Enjoy a free morning in Reims – maybe wander around the ornate Roman construction of the Porte of Mars, drop by the Musée de la Reddition (where the Germans officially surrendered in 1945), see the splendour of the Palais du Tau (Archbishop’s Palace), or head for the collection from famed artists in the Musée des Beaux Arts. Later, you’ll get an insight into champagne’s effervescent magic with a tour around the caves of Pommery, where you’ll learn about champagne-making and the remarkable businesswoman who made the brand world famous. When her husband died in 1860, Louise Pommery took control of the business, purchasing 120 limestone and chalk pits, or crayères, which were carved underneath 12 miles of the city by Roman soldiers during their occupation of Gaul. Walk down a 116-step stairway to this underground tunnel system, where millions of bottles of Champagne are lovingly cared for – the ageing process taking between three and 12 years – with someone turning the bottles exactly a quarter of an inch a day to get the yeast working. Get your bubbly fix today and be sure to try all the gastronomic feasts that Reims has to offer (don’t miss the biscuit rosé, meant to be dipped into your glass of champagne).
                                      Included Activities
                                      • Champagne Caves Tour Reims
                                        Optional Activities
                                        • Cathedrale Notre-Dame de Reims - Free
                                        • Palais du Tau - EUR8
                                          Hotel (1 nt)
                                          1 breakfast
                                          Day 19 Paris
                                          Travel by train to Paris (approximately 1 hour). Rich in museums, art galleries, monuments, fashion and fabulous food, Paris offers a wealth of major sights and hidden treasures to discover. Stroll along the Seine and be enchanted by a city that has inspired artists and lovers throughout the ages. Before jumping into all that the city has to offer, maybe simply walk through the pretty little lanes of the Latin Quarter, laze in the elegant shop-lined streets of St Germain, wander down the opulent Champs-Elysee, or meander through the winding bohemian streets of Montmartre. Here you can climb to the summit of the hill to the Sacré-Cœur Basilica, the highest point in the city, where on a clear day you’ll get wonderful views. Maybe take a short hop across the city on the Paris metro to the 20th arrondissement to wander the tombs of the Père Lachaise garden cemetery, the world’s most visited cemetery due to its ornate graves and moving memorials to icons such as Frédéric Chopin, Oscar Wilde, Jim Morrison, and Edith Piaf. Sitting with a baguette and cheese in the Luxembourg gardens and watching the French go about their daily life is the perfect way to while away the hours.
                                          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
                                            Hotel (1 nt)
                                            1 breakfast
                                            Day 20 Paris
                                            The whole day is free to be swept off your feet by the city. Discover the artistic treasure trove housed in 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. Study the Notre Dame Cathedral with its vast rose window and menacing gargoyles. Take a trip out to the vast and opulent Palace of Versailles. Head underground to experience the atmospheric spider-web of catacombs. Hop on two-wheels to glide around the city or take a walking tour of the major sites, or head to a cafe to have a coffee – the French drink it black – and watch the world go by. Whatever you choose, today is sure to be packed full of memorable sights and attractions. 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 the ticket windows of the Louvre 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 your tickets at:
                                            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
                                            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.

                                            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).
                                            10 breakfasts
                                            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
                                            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).

                                            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).

                                            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.

                                            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.
                                            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:


                                            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
                                            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.
                                            During your stay in Rome you may be asked to complete a City of Rome visitor tax exemption form.
                                            Joining point instructions
                                            From Fiumicino Airport you can follow the signs from the arrivals hall to the train station in order to catch the 'Leonardo Express' direct to Termini Station. For those coming from Ciampino airport, Terravision operates a bus link from Ciampino to Termini Station. Once at Termini Station, exit the building on the right hand side exit onto Via Marsala. Turn left and walk along Via Marsala until it crosses Via Solferino. Here you will have to turn right. After one block you reach Piazza dell'Indipendenza square. At the far end of the square on the left you will find Via Castelfidardo. Walk up Via Castelfidardo and Hotel Stella is at number 51 on the left hand side. The entire walk takes no more than 10 minutes. For those not wishing to walk 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
                                            Phone: +33 143797257
                                            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:

                                            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 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
                                            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.


                                            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.
                                            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 Travel 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.

                                            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.


                                            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:


                                            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.

                                            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.