• Venice
  • Varenna
  • Lake Como
  • Cinque Terre
  • Florence
  • Assisi
  • The Forum in Rome

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My Way® Italy in 13 Days Tour

from $2,895 + Air

Optional Single Supplement $725

See Tour Dates

Following a route that connects Italy's must-see sights — from Venice to Lake Como, the Cinque Terre, Florence, Assisi, and Rome — Rick Steves' money-saving My Way tour gives you the freedom to decide your own daily sightseeing priorities and pace. We cut the stress by providing comfortable rooms in centrally located hotels, private bus transportation from city to city, and an Italy-savvy tour manager to help advise you along the way. Join us for My Way®: Italy in 13 Days!

Dates & Prices

2016

    • May 8–May 20 (Su-Fr)
    • $2,995 + Air

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    • May 15–May 27 (Su-Fr)
    • $2,995 + Air

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    • May 22–Jun 3 (Su-Fr)
    • $2,995 + Air

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    • Jun 5–Jun 17 (Su-Fr)
    • $2,995 + Air

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    • Jul 10–Jul 22 (Su-Fr)
    • $2,995 + Air

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    • Sep 4–Sep 16 (Su-Fr)
    • $2,995 + Air

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    • Sep 18–Sep 30 (Su-Fr)
    • $2,995 + Air

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    • Sep 25–Oct 7 (Su-Fr)
    • $2,995 + Air

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    • Oct 2–Oct 14 (Su-Fr)
    • $2,895 + Air

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    • Oct 16–Oct 28 (Su-Fr)
    • $2,895 + Air

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What's Included

  • This is an "un-guided" tour — giving you the freedom (and responsibility) to manage your daily sightseeing schedule and meals
  • A small, friendly group of 24–28 people will share our big, comfy bus during the trip, but not do organized sightseeing together
  • A Rick Steves tour manager will coordinate the group's transportation and hotels and provide advice for sightseeing, meals, etc.
  • All group transportation from Venice to Rome
  • 12 nights accommodations in memorable, centrally located hotels
  • All breakfasts are included
  • All tips for tour manager and driver
  • Free Audio Europe™ app for Apple and Android (free podcast/mp3 files) featuring Rick's audio walking tours of sights, museums and neighborhoods in Florence, Venice, and Rome. Also includes Rick's radio interviews with experts on destinations covered in this itinerary
  • Rick Steves Travel Store credit to use toward guidebooks for your trip
  • Guaranteed tour price, locked in the moment you make your deposit
  • Optional single supplements — this tour has a limited number of private rooms for solo travelers for an additional fee
  • Tour alum discount of $50 for each tour you've taken prior to 2016
  • 50% discount on a consulting appointment with our in-house experts to assist with your pre- or post-tour travel plans
  • Flexibility should you need to transfer, or cancel/interrupt your tour
  • Costs not covered: As this is not a guided tour, you will be responsible for the cost of all your lunches, dinners, drinks, admissions, sightseeing, and non-group transportation. Be sure to plan and budget accordingly. See our Tour Conditions Agreement for important details regarding everything listed above.

Itinerary

Sightseeing notes

(r) = reserve a time before you leave the USA
* = included in Rick's audio walking tours

Day 1: Welcome to Italy

Welcome to Italy! Today is a great day to simply get lost in Venice (remember, it's an island), exploring the alleys and cruising the canals. We'll meet at our hotel at 5 p.m. for a group get-together. Your tour manager will give an overview of the days ahead, answer your questions, and offer a quick orientation to our neighborhood. Then you're free for dinner on your own. Sleep in Venice (2 nights).

Day 2: Exploring Venice

The entire day and evening are yours to experience the Byzantine majesty of St. Mark's Basilica*, the formidable Doge's Palace*, the masterpiece-packed Frari Church*, maybe take in a church concert, waltz on St. Mark's Square, or pub-crawl your way through this unique city. No bus today.

Day 3: Lake Como

This morning we'll say "Ciao Venezia" as we meet up with our bus and drive to Lake Como. Along the way, we'll stop to grab lunch before arriving at our final destination — the sleepy Lake Como village of Varenna, where you'll have plenty of time to explore its romantic promenade, tiny harbor, and narrow lanes. Sleep in Varenna (2 nights). Boat: ½ hr. Bus: 5 hrs.

Day 4: Cruising Lake Como

All you'll need is a Lake Como ferry boat pass and you'll have the entire day and evening free to explore the villages and waterways of romantic Lake Como, including such elegant stops as Bellagio. Hike up into the Alpine foothills for unforgettable vistas, or take an hour-long train trip to Milan for a day of city sightseeing. No bus today.

Day 5: Cinque Terre

Today's destination is Italy's Cinque Terre: five perfectly preserved fishing villages, laced together with hiking paths that meander between vineyards and the deep blue sea. After winding our way down to the seaside village of Levanto, we'll board a train for the 10-minute ride to Monterosso. We'll arrive late this afternoon, with plenty of time to enjoy Monterosso's pleasant eateries and ambience. Sleep in Monterosso (2 nights). Train: ¼ hr. Bus: 5 hrs.

Day 6: Exploring the Cinque Terre

Ahh, it's time to take a "vacation from your vacation" today in our Mediterranean getaway. Pick a Cinque Terre village and spend your day exploring the stairways and alleyways, sunning yourself on the rocks, or sipping a cappuccino and catching up on your journal at an outdoor café. Or, if you're looking for lots of exercise, fresh air, and panoramic views, start your day early and hike the cliff-side paths that connect the towns. For dinner tonight, enjoy what's local and fresh: the seafood and the "best pesto pasta in Italy." No bus today.

Day 7: Florence and David

We'll drive straight to Florence this morning, so you can hit the ground walking. This afternoon is yours to explore the Renaissance city, including Brunelleschi's magnificent cathedral dome*, Ghiberti's Baptistery doors*, and other creations that helped define this world-changing era. You could even take time to visit the Accademia Gallery*(r) and marvel at works of sculptural genius: Michelangelo's rough-hewn Prisoners and his greatest masterpiece, David. Sleep in Florence (2 nights). Train: ¼ hr. Bus: 3 hrs.

Day 8: Renaissance Florence

Today is yours to devote time to the breathtaking Renaissance art of the Uffizi*(r) — home to the finest collection of Italian paintings anywhere — including works by Leonardo, Botticelli, Michelangelo, and more. Or you could stroll across the delightfully medieval Ponte Vecchio, and visit several of the city's art-filled churches and museums, browse the colorful markets, and find a special trattoria for dinner on your own. No bus today.

Day 9: Assisi

Today we'll venture into the heart of magical Tuscany, stopping for several hours to poke around the quiet lanes of a friendly hill town. This afternoon we'll make a modern-day pilgrimage to the beautifully preserved hill town of Assisi, the hometown of St. Francis. Sleep in Assisi (2 nights). Bus: 4 hrs.

Day 10: St. Francis' Assisi

In a time of unprecedented church wealth, St. Francis inspired a refocused spirituality through poverty, humility, and the beauty of nature in Umbria. You'll have all day and evening to experience the beautifully frescoed Basilica of St. Francis*, and wander through (and wonder at) this charming town and its surrounding hills. No bus today.

Day 11: La Dolce Vita Rome

This morning we'll get an early start as we make our way from Assisi to Rome, with a quick stop for lunch along the way. Arriving at our Rome hotel this afternoon, you can enjoy dinner at the outdoor café of your dreams, then celebrate la dolce vita Roman-style, with an after-dinner stroll through the floodlit heart of the city, lacing together the lively campos, classy piazzas, and splashy fountains. Don't forget to taste some refreshing gelato along the way. Sleep in Rome (2 nights). Bus: 3 hrs.

Day 12: A Day of Roman Roamin'

Rome is the grand finale of our trip, packed with historical riches, cultural delights, and an infinite supply of wows. Today, aided by Rick's audio tours, you could follow the footsteps of emperors through the Roman Forum*, Colosseum*, and Pantheon*. If the Renaissance is more your speed, the immense St. Peter's Basilica* (home to Michelangelo's sublime Pietà) and the sprawling Vatican Museums*(r) (home to his mind-boggling Sistine Chapel) are a metro or bus ride away. It's your final night in Rome, so get out and make it special. Salute! No bus today.

Day 13: Tour Over After Breakfast

It's a breeze to reach Rome's airports by taxi or train. Your tour manager will help you with any post-tour planning, leaving you well prepared for the road ahead. Grazie e ciao!

Itinerary specifics subject to change.

Physical Demands

Our tours are physically active! It's an essential part of the Rick Steves tour experience. On our My Way: Italy in 13 Days tour — among other things — you'll need to happily...

  1. Carry/roll your luggage over uneven pavement (several blocks possible) and up stairways to reach your hotel; then up several flights of stairs to reach your room.
  2. Sleep with street noise and no (or weak) air conditioning.
  3. Be able to navigate towns and cities on your own.
  4. Be responsible for your own daily sightseeing, admissions, meals (except breakfasts) and non-group transportation.

Reviews

Keith

New London, NH

Tour: 10/20/15

Overall rating: rating 4 of 5

The trip was amazing!!! Our goals were to get a feel for Italy from top to bottom, so that we could decide where to return to in the future, to do it without the hassle of having to plan the trip details ourselves, to have the experts guide us through the the best places in Italy to visit, to arrange the best hotels, close to the central locales, and yet to have the freedom to choose our own restaurants and daily routine. The Rick Steves My Way 13 day Tour did all of that and more.

Favorite "WOW" moment

"There were many "wow" moments for me, but throwing open the shutters at our hotel and having picture-perfect Lake Como totally mine to soak in. The room that allowed this was a "negotiated" upgrade though. Our original room had a roadside roof view. With a talk with the hotel staff (and 40 extra Euro per night), we were able to upgrade. I encourage tour-goers to speak up if they want to improve their experience."

Jill

Minnetonka, MN

Tour: 10/20/15

Overall rating: rating 5 of 5

Great trip! This was our second My Way tour and we liked having the hotels and transportation taken care of and our days free to plan whatever we wanted. The locations were a nice mix of bigger cities and smaller towns. I would suggest arriving a few days before the tour starts to help with jet lag and see more of Venice. And stay a few days afterwards to have more time in Rome. We had a great group of fellow travelers!

Favorite "WOW" moment

"So many wow moments Venice- walking through the streets of this beautiful city Varenna- the botanical gardens in Bellagio with Lake Como in the background...gorgeous Cinque Terre- hiking from Vernazza to Monterosso and buying limoncello shots from a local Florence- turning a corner and coming across the duomo with the church bells ringing Assisi- arriving in the evening and seeing all the lights in this charming town Rome- wandering into the Basilica St Ignatius and listening to a choir"

Bryan

Lake Forest, CA

Tour: 10/20/15

Overall rating: rating 5 of 5

This was our first Rick Steves tour, but we've always been big fans of his tour books and hotel recommendations whenever traveling in Europe. Everything went smoothly and we had a wonderful time. We wanted a tour that would handle all the hotels and travel, but leave us time to explore whatever we wanted on our own, and that's exactly what we got.

Favorite "WOW" moment

"It's hard to pick a favorite. Buying pizza and beer at a hole-in-the-wall and eating it sitting on the steps around the corner where some gondolas were tied up. Finding a tiny bar on a back street in Rome with hundreds of beers and excellent food."

Sandra

Yinnar,

Tour: 10/20/15

Overall rating: rating 4 of 5

My first trip to Italy -the opportunity to have our own free time without the hassle of arranging transport and accommodation were the deciding factors in our decision to join this tour. It was a great decision -the choices of hotel locations and amenities were excellent, the bus very comfortable with a very competent driver (wi-fi on the bus was a bonus!)and the tour manager was friendly, helpful and always willing to assist the group when needed. The people on the tour were a great bunch.

Favorite "WOW" moment

"Overall many highlights - but the opportunity to hike the "Cinque Terre"trail, enjoy the excellent food in the area, to soak up the beautiful coastline and walk the gorgeous towns, and watch the sun set was my "WOW" time (not a specific moment sorry)"

Mona

Hooksett, NH

Tour: 10/20/15

Overall rating: rating 5 of 5

This was my second Rick Steves Tour, and I loved it. I especially liked the MY Way part since I have been to Italy several times before. What was new to me was Venice, Lake Como, and Assisi and I was very impressed. The group of 25 was mostly couples, I was the only one travelling alone. We all got along great and had a lot of fun. I was the oldest, at 80, but had no problems keeping up. As a matter of fact, I received the award for being the most energetic of the group!

Favorite "WOW" moment

"There were so many, but the natural beauty of Lake Como, the Basilica of St. Frances in Assisi and of course Cinque Terre. I was also very impressed with Venice."

Jean

Round Top, TX

Tour: 10/20/15

Overall rating: rating 5 of 5

I thoroughly enjoyed the Rick Steves My Way experience. When it was time to move on after a 2-night stay, I was not ready to leave any of our wonderful destinations. The My Way tour was perfect for my husband and me because it provided just the right amount of togetherness with our fellow travelers and just the right amount of guidance from our tour manager.

Favorite "WOW" moment

"Sitting lakeside watching the Sunset at Varenna on Lake Como. Even with my old iPhone, the photos are amazing."

Jim

Brevard, NC

Tour: 10/20/15

Overall rating: rating 5 of 5

Excellent tour guide, wonderful travel locations, comfortable hotels and B&Bs, and a great group of fellow tour members. This was our NINTH RS tour, and it comes close to being our favorite.

Favorite "WOW" moment

"Thanks to the desk clerk in Assisi in taking me to the top hotel overlook to photograph an amazing sunset. Bright yellow and blue sky above the many colorful tiled roof homes. Awesome!!"

Patrice

Brevard, NC

Tour: 10/20/15

Overall rating: rating 5 of 5

Great itinerary. The excitement of large cities interspersed with charming small towns. Our tour members were friendly and interesting.

Favorite "WOW" moment

"Sistine Chapel! Such beauty."

Mark

New London, NH

Tour: 10/20/15

Overall rating: rating 4 of 5

Hans did a great job! He was very personable and knowledgeable on the places we visited. I felt totally safe and relaxed the whole trip. The group was very relaxed from the very beginning and we. Really enjoyed each other's company.

Favorite "WOW" moment

"I think the "wow" moment was being in the Sistine chapel...looking up and seeing "God creating Adam"."

Deborah

La Grande, OR

Tour: 10/18/15

Overall rating: rating 5 of 5

I enjoyed every minute of my trip to Italy. The My Way format let us relax between locations, get checked in quickly upon arriving, then be off to explore each new location. The itinerary was well chosen and provided us a wonderful snapshot of Italy. Thank you!

Favorite "WOW" moment

"The diversity of Italy. Everyone asks me my favorite part and I answer with a comment on how different each stop was and how much I admire the Italian people and their culture."

Jeff

Clarksburg, CA

Tour: 10/18/15

Overall rating: rating 5 of 5

The trip was spectacular - we would definitely consider another Rick Steve's My Way tour. It was a very well laid out itinerary which interspersed cultural hotspots like Venice, Florence and Rome with scenic, more restful stops like Varenna, Cinque Terre and Assisi to "decompress".

Favorite "WOW" moment

"Our trip was filled with "wow" moments, I am hard pressed to pick just one. Sunset while eating dinner on the lake in Varenna vs sunset while relaxing on one of the upper terraces at our hotel in Monterosso Del Mare, the Uffizi vs the Bourghese vs the Sistine Chapel, vs St. Francis Cathedral. If we are talking about food, some of the best food I have ever tasted - Fagottini di pasta fresca alle pere con tartufo - cheese ravioli with pears and fresh truffle at Ristorante Target in Rome - WOW!"

Nicole

Portland, OR

Tour: 10/18/15

Overall rating: rating 3 of 5

Laura, our fellow tourists, and the bus made for pleasant transfers between cities. The relative effortlessness of being conveyed from one city to the next was a new and positive experience. Sadly, that is as far as our enthusiasm for tour life stretched. The tour confirmed our worst fears about tours in general. Even under the My Way umbrella, one is still chained to a schedule and, much worst, a selection of hotels not always to one's taste. (Hotels...the biggest problem for us. More below.)

Favorite "WOW" moment

"Lake Como genuinely wowed us. We loved our hotel room there, even though it was considered slightly inferior to those reachable by the funicular. We made a point of being on our deck to see the lake at both dawn and dusk. Florence might have provided more wow moments, but it's crazy to try to see it in two days, especially on a weekend."

Janice

El Cajon, CA

Tour: 10/18/15

Overall rating: rating 5 of 5

This was a long awaited trip to celebrate our 30 years of marriage - we had hoped to make it for our 25th anniversary, but work and family obligations kept getting in the way! I'm glad we waited as we did not know about the Rick Steves My Way tour before that. It was perfect for us. We didn't have to worry about the logistics of transportation and lodging and we had an informative guide, Laura who kept telling us about wonderful things to do.

Favorite "WOW" moment

"Laura told us we were going to go toe the St. Francis chapel in the valley before we checked into our hotel in Assisi. It was dusk when we walked over to the church and entered with the fragrence of candles burning and the low hum of prayers being said and rosaries being chanted inside the original little church of St. Francis. It was more spiritual than any other church I have been to, and I am not even catholic."

Sarah

Abingdon, VA

Tour: 10/18/15

Overall rating: rating 5 of 5

I was impressed from Start to Finish with how efficient Rick Steves Tours are run - from the moment I made my deposit, until the last night as a group, everything went so effortlessly! You did what you said you were going to, WHEN you said you would - such as getting hotel information, travel guidebooks, and information packets,and even this evaluation. There was a couple on our tour who had been on 8 prior tours with your company and they loved each one of them. I can understand why!

Favorite "WOW" moment

"My first WOW moment was in Venice - I wandered into St Marks Square, standing in the middle was an Asian gentleman, arms spread out, head back, eyes closed, covered with pigeons - yes even on his head - it was so unexpected, I just laughed and laughed. Another "WOW" moment was when we arrived in Assisi after dark - the city lay on the hill,lights twinkling in the night, bathed in the light of a full moon - this is what Camelot must have looked like! Amazing Memories."

Robert

La Grande, OR

Tour: 10/18/15

Overall rating: rating 5 of 5

OUr experience was great. Our guide was wonderful. We are looking at your My Way tour for the Alps for one of our next adventures. Thank you for all your careful planning and your vast expertise.

Favorite "WOW" moment

"My wow moment was accidentally finding a winery while bush wacking in our first town in the Cinque de Terra. What a find. The wine was great and the food they served with each different wine was fantastic. While in Florence we did a Dan Brown walking tour with tour guide Julianna and she was very knowledgeable and had really done her homework."

Margaret

Palos Park, IL

Tour: 10/18/15

Overall rating: rating 4 of 5

I loved the cities chosen, the freedom to explore each location on our own, the bus transporting us and the details that went into our travel.

Favorite "WOW" moment

"Arriving at the Basilica of Saint Mary of the Angels in Assisi in the evening."

Curt

Palos Park, IL

Tour: 10/18/15

Overall rating: rating 5 of 5

This was my first Rick Steves' Tour. I loved the "My Way" format that provided a place to stay and transportation between locations, but left me free to explore on my own.

Favorite "WOW" moment

"Venice at night"

Dan

Bellingham, WA

Tour: 10/18/15

Overall rating: rating 5 of 5

Lots of walking, lots of stair climbing including at hotels. Nice balance of large cities with must see art, etc. and smaller locations where we could be more laid back if we chose. We mostly did our own thing, but liked every member of the tour group including Laura our guide, and occasionally interacted with all of them. By taking the Myway approach we sometimes had to arrange separate tours to avoid lines. But going this late in the season minimized the problem.

Favorite "WOW" moment

"Loved it all. Lake Como did stand out including one instance in particular. We had climbed up to a the castle and decided to take a back way to town if possible. In a tiny adjacent community we asked two older people in our very limited Italian if we could get to Varenna in the direction we pointed. They spoke zero English but indicated yes and used the word left which we understood. We walked down to the corner turned left,looked back and saw they were waiting to ensure we were on track."

Michelle

Bellingham, WA

Tour: 10/18/15

Overall rating: rating 4 of 5

Variety of beautiful and interesting locations, busy cities interspersed with quieter scenic getaways. Other RS travelers simpatico. Lots of walking, cobblestones, stairs, art, food, sunshine, fun! Able to survive, no, thrive! with minimal Italian. Natives friendly! Guide Book used for after tour hotel reservations with excellent results...made it all so easy to go on our own. Prego!

Favorite "WOW" moment

"All of them revolve around Italian people. One moment was at a Gastronimica in the Cinque Terre. Our guide, Laura, said that Pesto was a local dish in this area. I did not see pesto on the menu or in the food display. I asked if it was available. Si si si, es tipica said the waitress. Moments later, the best pesto in my life was delivered to the table. The waitress, the cook and his mother all came to my table to see the big smile on my face as I ate it. You like our pesto? Si, si si!"

Faith

Phoenix, AZ

Tour: 10/18/15

Overall rating: rating 5 of 5

The thought and planning of every detail made for a special experience for those of us lucky enough to be together on this trip. We got a chance to see so much of Italy with a number of spots that we would have missed because we knew nothing about them before this trip. From major sight seeing spots as Rome and Venice to Lake Como and Gubbio, which we knew little about. The towns of Cinque Terra and Assisi were great. After this trip, I feel we could take on Italy on our own, independently.

Favorite "WOW" moment

"Standing on our terrace over looking Lake Como was absolutely amazing. Of course, the gondola ride in Venice was quite special, too."

Ann

Baltimore, MD

Tour: 10/11/15

Overall rating: rating 4 of 5

Another great My Way tour! This trip combined with our Gremany, Austria, Switzerland My Way with Martin last Oct. were the best vacations of our lives! It is such a great concept! Thank you for taking care of our hotels, breakfasts, great tour managers & transportation so we can just explore & do what we what we want! Loved our traveling group!

Favorite "WOW" moment

"Hiking the National Park Trail from Montorosso to Venrassa! The views were spectacular, the towns of CinqueTerre just amazing!"

Beverly

West Hills, CA

Tour: 10/11/15

Overall rating: rating 5 of 5

Favorite "WOW" moment

"Cinque Terra! We loved the beautiful landscape, the hikes and the quint villages! We will definitely go back!"

Penelope

Buffalo, NY

Tour: 10/11/15

Overall rating: rating 4 of 5

Having no experiences to compare and contrast this experience my overall feelings are very positive. The group that was part of the tour was easy to travel with and respected the process of traveling as a group. Laurel, and Marco, were excellent. Laurel was engaged, friendly, and informative. Marco, our bus driver, was friendly and skilled in handling the bus. Even when we had a minor vehicle accident Marco was calm and safely and efficiently resolved the issue to keep us on track.

Favorite "WOW" moment

"I can not say I had one "wow" moment. Visiting so many different venues each had "wow" moments. I had read a lot before leaving and had a good idea of the features of each place we visited I was so pleased with the "surprise" visit Laurel & Marco toke us to on our way to Assissi, the WWII American grave site. Very inspiring and emotional. Thanks, Laurel & Marco."

Raymond

Littlestown, PA

Tour: 10/11/15

Overall rating: rating 5 of 5

Well we went 2 days early to Venice, which was the way to see this great city and get used to the time change. recommend going with a tour of st marks, walk of the city and boat ride. Our tour leader was Laurel who did a super job of hearding us The accommodations were excellent with perfect locations and outstanding breakfasts. only complaint was that some the showers were too small and some of the hot water was limited. The other towns on the my way tour were just outstanding.

Favorite "WOW" moment

"I liked the surprise visit to the WWII Florence American cemetery."

Elizabeth

Littlestown, PA

Tour: 10/11/15

Overall rating: rating 5 of 5

The selection of hotels and transportation were excellent. Our Escort and bus driver were very helpful and upbeat. We enjoyed the system of the My Way tour since this was our first tour with a group. We use to travel via rental car but reached the age when driving is not longer fun so this was the perfect alternative. We were able to go at our speed when in the cities and towns. We could enjoy the traveling without the stress of looking for the next B&B or hotel.

Favorite "WOW" moment

"My "wow" experience was at Lake Como...beautiful hotel with rain shower, great breakfasts, fantastic views and lovely garden nearby. The boat ride across the lake to another beautiful town and the calm, beauty of the area was refreshing."

George

Buffalo, NY

Tour: 10/11/15

Overall rating: rating 4 of 5

Tour was very good. I was very impressed with our tour guide Laural and our bus operator Marco. Both did an excellent job of providing a great experence

Favorite "WOW" moment

"Each location provided a unique experience."

Leslie

Richland Hills, TX

Tour: 10/11/15

Overall rating: rating 5 of 5

I would say my overall experience was outstanding, Our tour guide Laurel and Marco the bus driver was so very nice, informative, was ready with answers to my questions. Laurel has a sweet nature to her and surprised me with a birthday gathering, I was so shocked and that touched my heart so much. I was a single traveler and everyone was so thoughtful towards me. Laurel is a keeper !

Favorite "WOW" moment

"My wow was seeing two fold - 'David'. He's presence engulfed the hall and my breath was taken away. And the Vatican and Sistine Chapel - so beautiful and awe inspiring. My heart was so full with the beauty of Italy."

Neal

Cedar Rapids, IA

Tour: 10/11/15

Overall rating: rating 5 of 5

We had a fantastic tour! Laurel was great and so much fun to be with! And Marco our bus driver was awesome! Very careful driver and very friendly with all of us. We had a package that we needed to leave on the bus for 2 days and he reassured us that it would be fine and not to worry about it! We took him at his word and everything was just fine. Marco and Laurel were just the greatest people to lead us around Italy! We had a surprise birthday party for 1 of our people and we had so much fun!

Favorite "WOW" moment

"We think the wow moment was when they made an unexpected stop outside of Florence and stopped at the American Italian Cemetery. It was an unexpected stop for us and everyone really enjoyed stopping there.15-20 min there was not long enough. I would suggest that it be made a regular stop there and people be allowed to spend more time there. It was a feeling of American pride!"

John

Baltimore, MD

Tour: 10/11/15

Overall rating: rating 5 of 5

It was an amazing experience. the tour was very well thought out and we enjoyed it thoroughly. While it was not without some mishap and bad weather, it was a very enlightening 13 days. I enjoyed the great attention to detail and knowledge of Laurel our tour guide.

Favorite "WOW" moment

"I would have to say the hiking along the coast at Cinque Terre. The fabulous food and wonderful smaller villages were also right up there."

Donna

Woodbridge, VA

Tour: 10/11/15

Overall rating: rating 4 of 5

Having never done a tour before we had an incredible time. Our guide Laurel and our bus driver Marco were the best!! I think it would have been a little better if we had done a tour with a guide first before doing one without one. We were lost a lot, and missed some sites, because our book didn't cover them or we just couldn't figure it out! Other members of our group helped us out and were fun to be with!

Favorite "WOW" moment

"Even though Rome wasn't our favorite stop, St. Peter's Basilica was my wow moment. I just stood in the middle of the church with my mouth hanging open!"

Mary Ann

Southampton, NY

Tour: 10/04/15

Overall rating: rating 5 of 5

This was our first trip to Italy and we enjoyed it immensely! The tips in your book were right on. We only wish that we had paid more attention to your tip about not bringing a large suitcase. As we soon found out that there was a lot of steps to go up and at times long walks through the streets to our hotels.We now know that we did not need to bring as much as we did.Live and learn! As far as the places that we went to and the tour itself it was just amazing. Laura was just great! Thank you?

Favorite "WOW" moment

"There were so many, but I think that Lake Como with the lake view and the small towns along it was just breathtaking!"

Sue

Southampton, NY

Tour: 10/04/15

Overall rating: rating 5 of 5

It was awesome! The location of the hotels right in the center of things, made moving around very easy even though the access to these locations was sometimes cumbersome. That refers to those of us who were first timers and didn't know how to pack!(Now I know. Excess packing is NOT necessary!) Our bus driver, Stefano, just drove as if you were in your living room. Laura our guide. What a sweet and helpful person. The last night get together was more than expected. She went above and beyond.

Favorite "WOW" moment

"All were my favorites except maybe Florence and Rome. I'm not a city person."

Deborah

Southampton, NY

Tour: 10/04/15

Overall rating: rating 4 of 5

The overall tour experience was great. Our guide, Laura, on the bus was personable, very informative and made an effort to address everyone as individuals. She had a great sense of humor as well. Out bus driver was very professional. The hotels were centrally located, clean and personable. Everything from booking to our last day was so organized. Will recommend Rick Steve's Tours.

Favorite "WOW" moment

"I would have to say wandering through Chinque Terre. And visiting the island of Murano, with all the brightly colored houses."

Mary

Elk River, MN

Tour: 10/04/15

Overall rating: rating 4 of 5

I liked the My Way experience. I was anxious to compare it to the regular tours I have been on. The My Way tour did require more planning in advance to make a worthwhile experience. The itinerary, transportation & lodging were very good. I was very happy with the fun group of travelers and bonding with them for 2 weeks. I had thought this might not happen like it does on a regular tour.

Favorite "WOW" moment

"Venice and Lake Como were new destinations for me. I loved the Grand Canal after dark with buildings all lit up, I also loved the scenery of Lake Como as we criss-crossed the lake on the ferry."

Mary

The Villages, FL

Tour: 10/04/15

Overall rating: rating 5 of 5

This was my first "My Way" tour. I think when I take another Rich Steve's Tour, I would return to the planned tour. The My Way Tour was a lot more work doing the excursion bookings and scheduling. I would not recommend a My Way for a non seasoned travelor.

Favorite "WOW" moment

"There were so many. This was my first time to visit Italy. Everyone told me it was their favorite country to visit and one they would do again. I can see why and agree. There are so many WoW moments it would be impossible to choose just one. If you haven't been to the Gallery Bourghesse, book your trip now."

Del

Ankeny, IA

Tour: 10/04/15

Overall rating: rating 5 of 5

We enjoyed the convenience of having the hotels and coach arranged for us instead of booking all of the travel ourselves. Laura was a just-right tour host: informative, funny, and serious about her work. We enjoyed the walk-ability to sites from our various hotels, and pacing our days ourselves. This was our second My Way Tour, and we definitely would do another!

Favorite "WOW" moment

"The food, the art, the history and the relevance and impact Italy still has across the centuries."

Richard

Colbert, GA

Tour: 10/04/15

Overall rating: rating 5 of 5

With two trip needs being addressed (travel and hotels), it was easy to focus on specific plans for each city or area we visited, a major plus for the tour. Others on the tour had similar sensibilities, thus making the times we were together very comfortable and enjoyable. Tours we arranged for the major cities were all done very well, giving us positive impressions. Overall, an experience even better than we had hoped for.

Favorite "WOW" moment

"The beauty of Lake Como, the great art of Florence, and the uniqueness of Venice were all "wow" moments, but seeing and learning more about the Coliseum was perhaps the most "wow" moment, as its overall structure and functioning was most impressive."

Larry

Tucson, AZ

Tour: 10/04/15

Overall rating: rating 5 of 5

we enjoyed the trip very much. Our tour agent was very helpful. we kept to time lines without feeling like we were on a tight schedule. The hotel location in the city center were great locations.

Favorite "WOW" moment

"Lake Como, it was just beautiful a bit of fog mist made the place look and feel magical. We would return there again. That was our idea of Italy."

Tom

Portland, OR

Tour: 10/04/15

Overall rating: rating 3 of 5

I got the highlights of Italy. A well designed itinerary, sampling the best of Italy . A visit to the major cities, Rome, Florence and Venice for the arts, Cinque Terra for ocean lovers, lake como and Assisi for the view and relaxation. I thought that having an escort and a dedicated bus throughout the trip to be unnecessary, given that we signed up for a "your way" tour. Providing local guides for a limited time should have been sufficient

Karen

Bellingham, WA

Tour: 09/27/15

Overall rating: rating 2 of 5

The itinerary was pretty good,except for ending up in Florence with the full day landing on free Sunday where most museums were either packed or closed. Our fellow travelers and tour manager were great. The weather was not great , sometimes absolutely miserable. The hotel rooms were the biggest disappointment. We've been on two other Rick Steve's tours and the hotels or the placement in the more decent or scenic hotels was totally different on this trip. That impacts enjoyment of the tri

Favorite "WOW" moment

"The wows had nothing to do with anything provided by the trip,other than stopping in Cortona."

Mick

Napa, CA

Tour: 09/27/15

Overall rating: rating 4 of 5

Really enjoyed it. Liked the tour coordinator (Rich) and our fellow travelers. Didn't think all of the hotels were great choices. Felt that 2 days per location made for a lot of time traveling rather than seeing/doing. The Android app was very useful for walking tours but not always easy to navigate.

Favorite "WOW" moment

"In spite of a lot of talk about Assisi being the "boring" spot on the tour, we really loved the town. And dining on a balcony 400 meters above the Tuscan plain, with a gourmet meal for $100 for 2 people with wine and multiple courses was pretty amazing."

Cecelia

Snoqualmie, WA

Tour: 09/27/15

Overall rating: rating 5 of 5

We had a great group filled with friendly, helpful, and knowledgeable people. No grumps in the crowd. We definitely had a taste of Italy and I would love to go back and stay longer in our favorite places. Rich was a great companion for us. He told us the best restaurants, places to see, and went with us whenever he could.

Favorite "WOW" moment

"There were just too many. I loved Rome with it's crowds and bustle. Everywhere you looked there was a rich tapestry of history. Walking on the Roman Road at the Forum. Just imagining all who had walked here before."

Allison

Brush Prairie, WA

Tour: 09/27/15

Overall rating: rating 5 of 5

I do like the "My Way" style of touring. We had a group of 29, and we all got along so well!! Will keep in touch with many of them for sure. We did have an incident in Assisi when we had to get from the hotel to the bus in a thunder/lightening storm (safety issue). I would suggest tour members not book tours early in the day on the same day of travel, so there is time in case of heavy traffic or storms.(Florence & Rome).

Favorite "WOW" moment

"Varenna and Cinque Terre . I did love Cortona and Assisi. Seeing David was a definite "wow" moment! The sunrises and sunsets...amazing! The food and wines!"

Jim

Charlotte, NC

Tour: 09/27/15

Overall rating: rating 4 of 5

The trip was a little long, especially when combined with a day before and a day after. (We wanted to spend additional time in Venice and Rome.) If I had to leave something out, probably Assisi and Cortona.

Favorite "WOW" moment

"The views of Lake Como."

John

Bellingham, WA

Tour: 09/27/15

Overall rating: rating 4 of 5

The tour was about what I expected. The tour manager, Rich, did an excellent job. He was very dependable, knowledgeable and kept us informed of everything we needed to know. We had heavy rains on three of the days which adversely impacted the experience, including the Cinque Terre trails being closed. The worst part of the trip was the mediocre quality of the hotels (tv and w-fi not working, adjacent room broken into in Rome), not as good as in previous RS trips to Prague and GAS.

Favorite "WOW" moment

"Didn't have any. I enjoyed the view from the Cinque Terre trail looking onto Vernazza from above (coming from Monterosso). If it hadn't been raining, that might have been one. But I was too busy trying to keep from slipping on the trail. Lake Como was cold and overcast the whole time. Best part was walking in the countryside around Cortona, and stopping at a little non-tourist café for lunch."

Celia

Charlotte, NC

Tour: 09/27/15

Overall rating: rating 5 of 5

The MyWay tour was exactly what we were looking for - free from worry about hotels and transportation, but free to plan our own daily activities. We were not sure what to expect from our Rick Steve's escort or the other tour members, but both were highlights of the trip!! Rich was always helpful, answering all of our questions and giving us great suggestions for sight seeing and dining! We had a meal or shared an adventure with every single person on our tour! Great fun!

Favorite "WOW" moment

"I had a "wow" moment in every location, but my favorite would be in Cinque Terre. Nine of us hiked from Monterosso to Vernazza our first afternoon in Cinque Terre. Light rain started falling about midway through the hike. The path became more slippery and by the time we got to Vernazza, we were wet. But the view of Vernazza as we came over the hill made it all worthwhile!"

Sheridan

Vancouver, WA

Tour: 09/27/15

Overall rating: rating 5 of 5

We really enjoyed the My Way Tour. It was nice being able to plan your day according to what you really wanted to do. I went with my twin sister and son. The tour group turned out to be so friendly. We all got along so well. Everyone was so considerate of one another. I loved the places we visited they were all so special.

Favorite "WOW" moment

"Every moment was a wow moment for me. Lake Como took my breath away. What a beautiful, peaceful spot. I would loved to have stayed there another day. I liked the smaller towns o much better. Florence and Rome are so hectic!!"

Lee Ann

Charlotte, NC

Tour: 09/22/15

Overall rating: rating 5 of 5

Overall experience was FABULOUS! This was our first trip to Europe and the My Way Tour was a perfect fit for us. The hotels and transportation were well organized and very comfortable which eliminated any stress and gave us the time and energy to fully enjoy each tour site. Our Tour Manager, Mary, was the BEST: organized, informed, enthusiastic, funny, warm, helpful. Did I mention "helpful"???

Favorite "WOW" moment

"So many, many, "WOW" moments: this is my WOW moment: Our first full day in Europe, in Venice, we were standing awestruck in St Mark's Square. All of a sudden the tower bells started to chime and the pigeons on the square began en mass to lift off, slowly swirl around the tower higher and higher as the bells continued to ring. I was nearly overwhelmed with awe."

Michael Darwin

Los Osos, CA

Tour: 09/22/15

Overall rating: rating 4 of 5

Hard to say, because I was sick most of the time. I think if I had been healthy it would have been much better.

Favorite "WOW" moment

"St Mark's in Venice, and sitting on 2500 year old column pieces in the Forum in Rome."

Barbara

Los Osos, CA

Tour: 09/22/15

Overall rating: rating 3 of 5

The tour moved on too fast for us. With only 1 1/2 days in each location, I felt I had to cram in as much as I could. We both got sick and that tired us out even more. We should have planned to do a little less in each town. Also it would be nice if there were a way to allow an ill participant to take a raincheck. One member was very sick and in spite of his efforts to the contrary, he got most of the rest of us sick.

Favorite "WOW" moment

"Walking the paths of ancient Rome was incredible, but so was visiting the Uffizi Gallery in Florence. Seeing Michelangelo's painting hung next to his contemporaries' paintings impressed me with why he is called a "master"."

David

Reno, NV

Tour: 09/22/15

Overall rating: rating 5 of 5

very good tour, your escort could not have been better

Favorite "WOW" moment

"Cinque Terra area was magical, lunch at Trattoria La Billy was the most fun, 12 different appetizers in one order."

Carol

Mukilteo, WA

Tour: 09/22/15

Overall rating: rating 5 of 5

This was our first trip to Europe so the Italy "My Way" concept was perfect for us. Our tour escort - Mary was excellent. Very approachable and knowledgeable. We knew that this trip was short and we would not be able to see everything, it was just a snapshot of Italy and we were not disappointed.

Favorite "WOW" moment

"Every city had a wow moment, very difficult to pick out just one. The museums, food and wine were excellent."

Elizabeth

Reno, NV

Tour: 09/22/15

Overall rating: rating 5 of 5

The "My Way" tour was perfect for my husband and me! We have not traveled much in a while and to have our accommodations and travel taken care of made everything so easy. Not to mention our wonderful travel consultant Mary! She was always available to answer questions and offer great advise.

Favorite "WOW" moment

"Wow moment would be arriving in Venice on a vaporetti and just taking in The Grand Canal! Wow!"

David

Stillwater, MN

Tour: 09/20/15

Overall rating: rating 4 of 5

Great...........Martin made the experience. Helpful, kind, thoughtful, informative.

Favorite "WOW" moment

"No wows"

Kathleen

Stillwater, MN

Tour: 09/20/15

Overall rating: rating 4 of 5

Our trip to Northern Italy and Rome was stress free, thanks to Rick Steve's My Way. We had no worries about transportation and accommodations and we had the lovely downloads from the free Rick Steves app on our iPhone which helped us prepare for every site. We loved the walking tours included on this app as well. The freedom of the My Way Tour gave us just the right amount of time for our particular travel desires. We could pace ourselves according to our desires.

Favorite "WOW" moment

"After viewing the excellent play about the Medici family, having a splendid dinner in Florence, and stopping for the most excellent gelatto I have ever experienced (recommended by Martin, our Rick Steves guide) we followed the signs for the third floor bar for an after dinner drink. As we stepped onto the terrace outside we spotted the full moon and the lights of the duomo. What a magical night as our lovely bartender joined us in singing "When the Moon Hits Your Eye Like a Big Pizza Pie"."

John

Elmhurst, IL

Tour: 09/20/15

Overall rating: rating 5 of 5

My Way Tour is just what we were looking for. It gave us the flexibility to do things on our own and removed all the stress related to making hotel and travel arrangements. Our tour guide, Martin, was great..... a good sense of humor and very knowledgeable and helpful. We also enjoyed the camaraderie of sharing the experience with fellow travelers.

Favorite "WOW" moment

"I think I most enjoyed walking the trail at the Chinque Terra. It was interesting, a bit challenging and had spectacular views along the way."

Gretchen

Clackamas, OR

Tour: 09/20/15

Overall rating: rating 4 of 5

I have come to know myself better on this My Way tour. I'm not as independent as I used to be. My next tour experience will be a fully guided one. Martin was outstanding as an escort: available, helpful and arranged some fun evening social gatherings. He was precise on what to expect when we arrived in a new town. He has a calm demeanor. Gives historical backgrounds. Enthusiastic! Approachable.

Favorite "WOW" moment

"WOW is this! In Rome whether during our tour or after our tour finished being in the same place and time as other travel friends. It's a great rush to find people you know in such a huge place; people you have shared 13 days or more with. There was a wonderful mix of people on our tour!"

Janel

Troy, OH

Tour: 09/20/15

Overall rating: rating 5 of 5

Italy always was and now still is my dream vacation destination. This was my first time to Italy and this was the perfect sampling for planning my next trip. All of the hotels were above average and some were absolutely amazing. Our view from the hotel over looking Lake Como...Amazing. The travel bus was comfy and all of our fellow travelers "buddies" were great. They helped make the tour better than it would have been on our own. Our guide was really great too. Can't wait to go back!

Favorite "WOW" moment

"Venice was my WOW moment, so glad we arrived early to have extra time here. Wow moments throughout the trip I would love to describe, but Venice introduced me to beautiful Italy. We walked all over this city and I had a wow moment turning each corner, walking into every square and crossing over every small canal. Back streets, small restaurants, clean water flowing from fountains all over the city. Impromptu Vivaldi concert in Venice, seriously!. I can't wait to get lost here again."

Karen

West Linn, OR

Tour: 09/20/15

Overall rating: rating 5 of 5

This tour more than exceeded my expectations! I have never traveled outside the US before so I was pretty nervous about the trip but thanks to our wonderful tour escort, Martin it was amazing. The group consisted of wonderful people and everything went so smoothly.

Favorite "WOW" moment

"My favorite "wow" moment was the hotel in Cinque Terre. Albergo Amici welcomed us so much better than the other hotels and their breakfasts were over the top!"

Sally

Steubenville, OH

Tour: 09/20/15

Overall rating: rating 5 of 5

We really loved everything about the my way tour. The size of our group was excellent-19. Bus very comfortable, convenient, safe. We enjoyed meeting other tour members. The accommodations were fine-some better than average, some average. Included breakfasts are a very nice perk. We loved the mixture of small towns and cities. Martin was a pleasant guide-very accessible, easy going, went out of his way to connect with us and offer help/suggestions if needed.

Favorite "WOW" moment

"The small town visits of Cinque Terre, Cortona, Assisi were most exciting for me-scenery breathtaking, and the overall charm. Real everyday life was evident. The food was incredible everywhere and surprisingly inexpensive, as was the wine. We'd been to Venice before, loved it again-especially getting away from tourist sites, and loved the art in Florence, and Vatican City and ruins of ancient Rome."

Jane

San Lorenzo, CA

Tour: 09/15/15

Overall rating: rating 5 of 5

This was a mother and adult daughter trip-couldn't have been more perfect for us. Our first trip to Italy, and we were completely captivated by the beautiful country, layers of history, outstanding art/culture, amazing food and friendly people. (Did I mention the food?) The My Way concept was an excellent choice - we love "spur of the moment" and time to linger where and when we choose. Our congenial fellow travelers added so much to our experience, and our escort Cynthia was just outstanding.

Favorite "WOW" moment

"There were so many, given the tour's perfect mix of exquisite "lost in time" small towns and awesome historic cities. If I had to choose, my favorite moment was ducking in during an afternoon rainstorm to sip wine on a covered outdoor patio fronting glorious Lake Como. The clouds, the lake and the mountains constantly changing colors. Knowing that Switzerland was just over the far ridge...."

Paul

Johns Island, SC

Tour: 09/15/15

Overall rating: rating 4 of 5

The overall experience a plus, our tour members and guide being first and foremost.

Favorite "WOW" moment

"Late evening, our first night in Venice, the elegant Cafe Florian,a deserted St Marks Square bathed in a soft grey light, the colonnade silhouetted, orchestra music filling the empty square and two happy travelers sipping wine content at finding a moment of serenity and beauty."

Susan

Scottsdale, AZ

Tour: 09/15/15

Overall rating: rating 5 of 5

The tour was absolutely magical! The itinerary was a wonderful mix of amazing cities and absolutely charming villages, both with their share of not-to-be-missed points of interests!!

Favorite "WOW" moment

"Too many to choose. As a avid "foodie", I loved the cooking class with Florencetown Tours that I took with Cynthia. Also, dinner at Il Caminento in Varenna with Moreno and his wife was something I will always remember. In addition, I was able to visit the amazing three story Eataly store in Rome and shipped home a variety of some of the delicious food that I was able to sample during the tour. The food and wine was incredible in all the destinations we visited!"

Kim

Independence, MN

Tour: 09/15/15

Overall rating: rating 5 of 5

I LOVE the MyWay concept!! It was the perfect fit for our travel style!I wanted to use this as my WOW moment - but realized it was more of a WOW experience than moment - so didn't exactly fit the criteria definition ;-)Having the freedom to explore and focus on Italy and it's cities and sites themselves, without having to commit a great amount of time in planning transport and lodging was wonderful. Having Cynthia as an 'onboard' travel host and resource was invaluable, a timesaver.

Favorite "WOW" moment

"Really, we only get one? ;-) Lake Como and it's tropical, lush beauty was unexpected. I loved stumbling upon a winery in a cave in the village of Tremezzo. I loved hiking the Cinque Terre coastal trail, walking past olive groves and through the villages overlooking the Ligurian Sea. I loved stepping into the past and quietness of the village of Assisi. Those were all WOW moments for me!"

Susan

Carmichael, CA

Tour: 09/15/15

Overall rating: rating 5 of 5

Love this format. It gave us the flexibility to see and do what we wanted to. It also took out the stresses which come from trying to get around in a foreign country and the time and work finding lodging. Our guide Susan was fantastic..I don't know what more she could have done. She was so informative and a great resource. Nice to make new friends of some of our fellow tour members. I'm sure we'll do a "my way" tour again.

Gary

Carmichael, CA

Tour: 09/15/15

Overall rating: rating 5 of 5

We were attracted by the format, and it turned out to be just what we wanted. Enough freedom and structure to satisfy my wife and I. Not having to worry about your hotel was a big help. Suggestions and help on the bus prepared us for our next town. The advanced suggestions of what to plan ahead for was helpful for me. Knowing where we were staying and how long helped us when we were planning for the trip. The guidebook was easy to understand and helpful.

Favorite "WOW" moment

"There were several memorable moments on the trip. The green and trees of Northern Italy. The palm trees at Lake Como. The peacefulness of Assisi. The magnitude of Rome and it's history. Too bad Trevi Fountain wasn't working! The plan of interspersing big and small towns was great planning and help us enjoy the trip more."

Eric

Goodview, VA

Tour: 09/13/15

Overall rating: rating 5 of 5

Intense. 6 cities and towns in two weeks, we came home exhausted.

Favorite "WOW" moment

"My first glimpse of the Duomo in Florence."

Michelle

San Antonio, TX

Tour: 09/13/15

Overall rating: rating 5 of 5

Loved the itinerary - felt like I got to see Italy and experience the people, places, food, culture very well. Visiting Rome last was a challenge - especially coming from calm and spiritual Assisi! Our tour guide was FANTASTIC - she spoke the language and was available for all our quirky needs. Hotels were mediocre - but understood on a Rick Steves' tour!

Favorite "WOW" moment

"I think I have 2 wow moments - I loved the challenge of hiking the mountain in Monterosso and the reward of the view on the other side. Seeing Italy's beautiful coast and feeling alive - can't be beat! The second moment was a personal, cultural moment - the group dinner in Lake Como at the restaurant up the mountain - Il Caminetto. The warmth of the local hosts - the incredible Italian meal - the chance to gather and share stories - made for a great traveling memory."

Judy

Lincoln, NE

Tour: 09/13/15

Overall rating: rating 5 of 5

Our experience with Rick Steves "Italy My Way" was was just perfect for us! We like being independent travelers and making our own choices on how we spend our time, AND we really appreciated having the trip planned for us regarding itinerary, hotels and travel. It was the best of both worlds! We didn't need to worry about a thing. We still had guidance, suggestions and help from our escort as needed. Our small group of 14 travelers was also perfect. More "MY Way " tours, please!

Favorite "WOW" moment

"There were so many "wow" moments! We loved each area, city and village. Venice-canals and views from the tower, Lake Como-views of the lake from the cobbled paths, Cinque Terre-sea views and villages, Florence- Doumo and Michelangelo's David . Tuscany and Assisi-views of the countryside, churches and the cobbled lanes, Rome-Pantheon and heart of Rome."

John

Gulfport, MS

Tour: 09/13/15

Overall rating: rating 5 of 5

We have not taken a trip with a group before. This Rick Steves My Way Tour turned out to be a fantastic tour. We were not tied down to group activities. But we had the hard part, transportation and lodging, handled for us. Kathleen was wonderful. She was always there for everyone in the group when she was needed. But she let us do it "my way" when we wanted that. Thank you Rick Steves for such a great tour. My only suggestion would be to add a day to Florence.

Favorite "WOW" moment

"All of the places we visited were wow moments. We fell in love with Italy. But the group was a wow moment in itself. The tour members and the escort made the whole experience a wow moment."

Janine

Cicero, NY

Tour: 09/08/15

Overall rating: rating 4 of 5

My overall experience was wonderful. I thought that the trip was very well planned out in terms of location in that we had down time between the cities. The transporation and accommodates were good and the group with whom we travelled as a really great mix of people who all knew how to roll with things and get along.

Favorite "WOW" moment

"My favorite "wow" moment was wandering into San Marco Piazza at night and drinking in all of the culture and music and lights and people genuinely enjoying the evening."

Bob

Tacoma, WA

Tour: 09/08/15

Overall rating: rating 5 of 5

Well planned. Scenic bus rides through Italy. Hotels much better than I expected. Strenuous. I can't believe I only gained three pounds with all I ate. It was offset with our walking/hiking tours. Martin our tour guide was informative, helpful and an enjoyable host. All in all it was better than I expected and my expections were high

Favorite "WOW" moment

"Climbing the 500 steps in the Duomo. The twisty claustrophobic climb was a phenominal experience to get to the top. The views were tremendous and worth the effort"

Marc

New York, NY

Tour: 09/08/15

Overall rating: rating 4 of 5

The My Way tour is an excellent concept. It removes the hassle of arranging transportation and multiple hotels individually on a multi-city tour.

Favorite "WOW" moment

"Viewing the Peggy Guggenheim Collection in Venice and the Borghese Gallery for the second time in Rome. (A tie.)"

Glenn

Pleasant Hill, CA

Tour: 09/08/15

Overall rating: rating 4 of 5

The trip was excellent, Alot of people in our group agreed Rome was the worst city and hotel to end our trip The sites were great but i think starting at Rome would be better

Favorite "WOW" moment

"All the churches and exhibits architecture and paintings."

Jo

Chapel Hill, NC

Tour: 09/06/15

Overall rating: rating 5 of 5

Very nice tour in that major stressors of the trip are covered - hotel and transportation. Terrific guide, Heather! Extremely helpful. Great tour agenda and overall, the usual reliable and helpful advice in Rick's book for planning activities and most of all - avoiding the lines! Our main complaint was that some of the hotels were not very nice. We would rather pay a bit more for the tour to stay in hotels that were a bit nicer.

Favorite "WOW" moment

"Hard to name just one. Lake Como was beautiful, we rented a boat and got out on lake. Did bike tour in Florence that went up to highest points. Hiked to castle ruins in Como and Assisi, both were great. St Frances' Basilica in Assisi & St Peter's in Rome were awesome. Seafood in Como & Cinque Terra was delicious!"

Michael

San Carlos, CA

Tour: 09/06/15

Overall rating: rating 5 of 5

We enjoyed our tour immensely. The mix of cities and towns, choice of hotels and locations, transportation and staff were all great. The MyWay tour turned out to be just what we were looking for. The flexibility to do what and when we wanted combined with wonderful group of people to share the adventure was perfect.

Favorite "WOW" moment

"Members of our tour had researched an electric bike tour of Florence. They had such a great time we signed up the next day. Truly friendly proprietors run a great service. Just 6 of us were led by an experienced guide up into the hills. Got to enjoy the countryside outside of the city. Beautiful views, a wonderful church at the top and exhilarating ride through the hillside. Even in the rain is was beautiful. Something we would have never found without the recommendation."

Denise

Wheat Ridge, CO

Tour: 09/06/15

Overall rating: rating 2 of 5

We loved Heather. She, along with RS books provided all the direction we needed to make that trip our own. Bus travel was a breeze. I will always recommend RS books; one cannot go wrong!

Favorite "WOW" moment

"Having dinner with Heather and having her show us the subtle key to opening all the hidden streets we might have missed without her help. She helped us to see places off the main thoroughfare, which is the real jewel and intrigue of RS tours."

Fred

Chapel Hill, NC

Tour: 09/06/15

Overall rating: rating 4 of 5

Heather was awesome. The bus and driver were excellent. The towns were all very different and fascinating. I was aware that we would be in modest hotels, two were very dissapointing and one of those was so bad we left and checked into another hotel. We would have happily paid more up front to have a little nicer hotels.

Favorite "WOW" moment

"Italy"

Patrick

Marietta, GA

Tour: 09/06/15

Overall rating: rating 5 of 5

What can I say! Janis and I celebrated birthdays while on our My Way Tour and that was just for starters. The entire tour was well planned and organized. Even though at times we were lost there wasn't a better place to get lost in. We had a wonderful group of folks from all over the country join us and to all of them I say, THANKS! It wouldn't have been the same without each and every one of you.

Favorite "WOW" moment

"They all had a moment that we'll never forget. Our favorite though was relaxing in Varenna overlooking Lake Como! Strolling through the Garden of Villa Melzi in Bellagio Italy and bringing home rocks we picked up from the shoreline there. There are to many to mention in such limited space but the quiet of the small places was what we wanted. That's exactly what we got!"

Margaret

Fullerton, CA

Tour: 09/06/15

Overall rating: rating 5 of 5

The "My Way" tour concept is the perfect blend of independent travel and stress-free logistics for lodging and transportation! The destinations were fabulous. The hotels were very comfortable as was our bus. The bus rides were surprisingly enjoyable - plenty of room to spread out since there were only 23 passengers - plus good info shared by Heather, our Tour Manager. Packing light made the hassle of having to pack every other morning tolerable.

Favorite "WOW" moment

"Among the many favorites: Venice Grand Canal audio tour, Murano and Burano, swimming in the Mediterranean sea, the best gelato of the trip in Cortona (and I had A LOT of gelato to choose from), Assisi walking audio tour, the stop at Santa Maria Degli Angeli. And, standing in an Autogrill, surveying all the slow food while picturing in my mind ANY American rest stop...Italians know how to live!"

Geoffrey

Kirkland, WA

Tour: 09/01/15

Overall rating: rating 5 of 5

This was our first Rick Steves tour and I thought it was a great way to see the northern part of Italy. The 'On Your Own' format allowed us to bypass commonly visited sites we had already been to, so we could focus on new sites. Since the hotels and travel were arranged by Rick Steves company, we were able to spend our time relaxing and enjoying the trip.

Favorite "WOW" moment

"My "WOW" moment was the visit to Assisi. The Basilica of Santa Maria degli Angeli (with the church in a church) was amazing and really set the stage for the story of St. Francis. The medieval city of Assisi was very interesting architecturally. We greatly enjoyed the Basilica of San Francesco d'Assisi (the church on a church), too. I preferred the the lower, romanesque, church. We made extensive use of the Rick Steves audio tour app, which increased our appreciation of the city and sites."

Peggy

Centennial, CO

Tour: 09/01/15

Overall rating: rating 5 of 5

Because we are somewhat accustomed to driving ourselves in France, Germany and Italy, we were excited but apprehensive about this, our 1st tour ever. We were very pleased with almost all aspects of our tour and have recommended the MyWay tours to our friends and are considering taking another MyWay tour.

Favorite "WOW" moment

"Each time - and there were many - that my husband and I, as we were wandering the streets of our cities and villages, would stumble onto a quiet and wonderful little restaurant to enjoy yet another 2 hour meal with excellent food, wine, service and an atmosphere lending itself to conversation."

Christopher

West Chester, OH

Tour: 09/01/15

Overall rating: rating 4 of 5

It was wonderful going to each and every one of the cities on the tour. It was planned well. We started in Venice and slowly moved South ending up in Rome. We liked the smaller cities that we visited. Our tour guide, Cynthia, was very nice and very informative. She gave us some great ideas on places to eat. Il Caminetto in Verenna was an especially wonderful dining experience. The Hotels were respectable. We had a few problems with the air conditioning. (It was rather hot in September)

Favorite "WOW" moment

"Our WOW moment waa touring the forum and colosseum in Rome. We had a wonderful tour guide, and the three hour tour was so amazing. Another wow moment was staying in Assisi, and watching the sun set over the Umbrian valley, while sitting in our hotel room. The rooftop garden at our hotel in Monterosso was really a fun place to hang out with friends. We met a group of Norwegians up there! Fun! We met some very nice people on our trip, people that we will absolutely hook up with again!"

Candice

Solana Beach, CA

Tour: 09/01/15

Overall rating: rating 4 of 5

This tour was perfect as there were 6 of us in our group. We thought about driving through Italy but decided against it for a variety of reasons. 2 in our group did not want to do a "tour" so we explored different methods and found Rick Steves' "My Way" tour!

Favorite "WOW" moment

"Lake Como was beautiful and not as crowded as the other places we visited."

Joseph

Kirkland, WA

Tour: 09/01/15

Overall rating: rating 4 of 5

I really loved the tour. The "On Your Own" concept is excellent. Cynthia was an excellent tour coordinator. I wish that you had a tour option to spend three nights in the major cities. This would give us two full days in the cities. We really missed having two full days in Venice, Florence and Rome.

Favorite "WOW" moment

"We had been to Italy before, so we did not necessarily have a "wow" moment. We did go to the church of San Giorgio in Venice and headed up the bell tower for a view of San Marco."

Gregg

Solana Beach, CA

Tour: 09/01/15

Overall rating: rating 4 of 5

The tour was well organized. The accommodations were all very good - some of the WIFI networks were inadequate. The bus and the driver were excellent - the drive did run a couple of stop signs - but maybe that's the Italian way! The bus was not filled, which allowed us to spread out. The cooler on the bus to buy water and soft drinks. The "bus stops" for refreshments and bathroom breaks. Cynthia was great and most helpful.

Favorite "WOW" moment

"The visit to Lake Como!"

Robert

Pflugerville, TX

Tour: 09/01/15

Overall rating: rating 5 of 5

This was our first Rick Steves' experience. We thoroughly enjoyed the flexibility the MyWay Italy tour including the unique collection of European hotels that put us right in the heart of everything & the smooth transportation between destinations. We were able to experience Italy at our own pace, but our excellent tour manager (Cynthia) kept everything flowing smoothly. Our 24+ tour mates were fantastic. The trip was a perfect way to celebrate our 30th anniversary & my wife's 50th birthday.

Favorite "WOW" moment

"Meeting the local vintner in Monterossa (Cinque Terre) who set up a stand at the end of the hike from Vernazza, He was selling homemade Limoncello & lemonade, which was a welcome sight after hiking most of the trails from Riomaggiore. It was nice to have a one-on-one conversation with one of the locals."

Krista

Redwood City, CA

Tour: 08/30/15

Overall rating: rating 5 of 5

Had the most amazing time..loved the unguided tour and that we did not have to worry about the stress of getting from one place to the next. Our guide, Kathleen, was great!! She was very friendly, knowledgeable, and helpful. We had a nice small group and we all became friends by the end. Loved the hotels and the areas we stayed in...and the format of the tour was perfect in that we went from one busy place to a smaller more sleepy hollow town in between. Best trip I have ever had!!

Favorite "WOW" moment

"So many wow moments during the whole tour! One that sticks out in my mind is sitting outside in Assisi at a great restaurant eating delicious food and drinking the best wine ever. The sun was going down and we saw the most beautiful sunset during our dinner. The clouds were perfect, there was a slight breeze, and you could hear the chiming of church bells. I just sat there reflecting on this beauty and was almost in tears at how incredible this moment was in addition to our whole trip."

Joyce

Sleepy Eye, MN

Tour: 08/30/15

Overall rating: rating 5 of 5

We've traveled indepentantly in the past using your tour books. Transportation and accomodations always seemed the most bothersome, so we thought we would just try one of your My Way tours. We couldn't have been happier. Kathleen was everything you could want in a tour guide-knowledgeable, helpful, and fun. The group was small, and all were congenial-definitely NO GRUMPS in this group. We would certainly recommend this type of tour (and have since our arrival home) to friends.

Favorite "WOW" moment

"Completing the hike from Monterosso to Vernazza!"

Vicki

Maplewood, MN

Tour: 08/30/15

Overall rating: rating 5 of 5

Fabulous tour with perfect amount of time in each greatly chosen location! We were well prepared thanks to all the info and enjoyed it immensly! The tour guide was very knowledgeable and friendly, the apps were very well done, the coach was comfortable, hotels centrally located, and the tips were very, very helpful.

Haigh

Cobourg, ON

Tour: 08/23/15

Overall rating: rating 4 of 5

Our tour group was small and we were able to interact easily with all members of the tour including the guides and our driver. The best part of travelling is meeting people and getting to know them. Heat and crowds in Firenze and Roma, both cities we had visited previously, tempered our enthusiasm. But the deal was right! Really enjoyed Varenna and Monterosso.

Favorite "WOW" moment

"Looking out the window of our bedroom which overlooked Lake Como and watching the sun highlight the scenery in the morning. Shadows on the flanks of the mountains were chased as the sun rose higher and the early morning mist unveiled picturesque Lake Como."

Phyllis

Louisville, KY

Tour: 08/23/15

Overall rating: rating 5 of 5

This was a wonderful tour, and I loved it all. The variety of experiences was great, and each city/stop had so much charm/interest. My only problem was that by Rome, I was almost too exhausted to face public transporttion and the overwhelming issues--crowds, lines, heat, of the Vatican. I wonder if putting Rome first on the itinerary and Venice last would be better...

Favorite "WOW" moment

"Seeing the statue of David in Florence. All of the artwork was incredible, and loved it all, but that wa special. Both St. Peter's and the Sistine Chapel were gorgeous, as well, but the crowds and our fatigue level dampened some of the enthusiasm for them. We also attended a performance of opera arias & music, which were incredible. I think it would have been good to know about musical performances available during our stay at a given city."

Carolyn

Dallas, TX

Tour: 08/23/15

Overall rating: rating 4 of 5

Locations were great to visit. Tour guide and assistant/Laurel & Antonia were very helpful and driver Deno did a perfect job. Everyone got to know each other pretty well. We were able to plan our outside tours efficiently and most of the time get good directions from the hotel front desk. A few times we were mislead but we figured it out. A few times a little more information from the hotel about how to operate the Wi-Fi and air conditioning, would have been helpful.Overall Great Experience

Favorite "WOW" moment

"Restaurants recommended, efficiency of leadership and group. Lake Como was the best."

Brian

Edmonds, WA

Tour: 08/23/15

Overall rating: rating 5 of 5

The hotels and any planned meals were all amazing. The tour guide was funny and overall a bright and knowledgeable person about all aspects of the tour.

Favorite "WOW" moment

"When I found this amazing food in Rome that was a fried ball/croquet. Probably the most interesting food I've had in a long time."

Jack

Dallas, TX

Tour: 08/23/15

Overall rating: rating 5 of 5

Favorite "WOW" moment

"The Lake Como area."

Janet

Morris Plains, NJ

Tour: 08/23/15

Overall rating: rating 5 of 5

This trip was the perfect introduction for us to Italy. I love the 1/2 day for travel, 1 1/2 days in each city that we had. At each spot, we never saw everything and that is exactly the way it should be - leaving some for next time. Our guide(s) were great and our main guide, Laurel, had everything worked out to a "T" so that we didn't have to worry about the transport at all but just work out where we wanted to eat and what we wanted to do in each location.

Favorite "WOW" moment

"There were so many, but narrowing it to one - it was our gondola ride in Venice. I wasn't planning to take a gondola ride, but given Rick Steves' recommendation in the guide book, we went ahead and went with a few other people from our tour. And sure enough - seeing Venice at night from the various canals on a gondola was definitely a "wow" moment for me and a great way to celebrate our 25th wedding anniversary."

Joel

Richland, WA

Tour: 07/12/15

Overall rating: rating 5 of 5

Our tour experience was excellent. Loved every stop on the itinerary. Loved every minute (except for a bout with food poisoning that knocked me out a day in Cinque Terra) Everything ran right on schedule. Our guide was wonderful, our driver was terrific - wow could he get that bus into some tight places!! The tour did what we wanted it to do. It gave us a taste of Italy. We wish we had longer in most places. But I guess we will just have to go back. Ah, gee, what a shame.

Favorite "WOW" moment

"There were too many WOW moments. Loved touring San Marco Basilica and Doge's Palace. Lake Como was beautiful. In Florence, our first sight of the Duomo was jaw dropping OMG. There was nothing in Florence that I didn't like. On the drive from Florence to Assisi, we stopped at the Floence American Cemetery. It was very moving, and I am so glad that we made that stop. Loved Assisi. But ROME was amazing. The Colosseum, the Forum, the Pantheon, the Vatican. WOW WOW WOW"

Morris

Hayward, CA

Tour: 07/12/15

Overall rating: rating 5 of 5

This trip was a wonderful 70th birthday present from my two daughters and was my first trip abroad. Despite the stifling heat that Italy was going throug during the trip, the tour group were a great bunch of people to be with, we were blessed with a young couple who were on their Honeymoon. Wow! Gotta give Staci a great shout out too, she made the trip more enjoyable by helping to make sure my mobility issues were taken care of. I would definitely want her to be my tour guide again.

Favorite "WOW" moment

"I have been asked that question and honestly can't give you one "wow" moment. There were so many wonderful sights to experience and I was always in awe of the great art and the majestic churches that we visited. If pinned down to one thing I would have to say Rome, the world's largest archeological dig and the world's largest art museum."

Amy

Westborough, MA

Tour: 07/12/15

Overall rating: rating 5 of 5

The guide, Stacy, was very helpful and great to work with. The group members got along very well and supported each other by sharing experiences and providing helpful advice to all members. The stops on the itinerary were perfect for our travel goals and two nights in each location allowed for enough time to see the main sights and feel like we experienced the place.Great time with great memories!

Favorite "WOW" moment

"My favorite "wow" moment was hiking in Cinque Terre all day, traveling from town to town experiencing the unique and diverse charm that each town offered."

George

Nampa, ID

Tour: 07/12/15

Overall rating: rating 5 of 5

It was everything that we dreamed it would be.....and we've been dreaming of it for about 25 years!

Favorite "WOW" moment

"Walking into St. Peter's Basilica in Rome. The beauty and immensity was breathtaking."

Diane

San Marcos, TX

Tour: 07/12/15

Overall rating: rating 5 of 5

We had a fabulous time celebrating our 30th anniversary and my birthday. I had been to Italy many years ago, and this tour was a way that I could see a few of the same cities I saw back then as well as a few new ones. Stacy and Adrian were both great and really made the trip so memorable. We booked quite a bit of things online before the trip that we could do in each city, and this was a great way for us to travel. The hotels selected were very good overall. Thank you.

Favorite "WOW" moment

"When we finished the hike from Monterosse to Vernazza in Cinque Terre and then rewarded ourselves with gelato. Assisi was my favorite many years ago and this time, too, I think. We loved making pizza and gelato in Florence. We did have many "wow" moments, so it is hard to pick just one. It was nice to have the transportation planned. It made it easy for us to do what we wanted to do and see."

Randall

San Marcos, TX

Tour: 07/12/15

Overall rating: rating 5 of 5

The My Way tour was perfect for us. We do not like to follow crowds or be told how much time to spend doing each activity. Stacy provided excellent information and guidance but kept the emphasis on doing things our own way. It was a fabulous experience and worth every single penny for the tour cost!

Favorite "WOW" moment

"When we began the descent into Vernazza after climbing out of Monterosso in the Cinque Terre. We likely would have never gone to Cinque Terre on our own. It was breathtaking."

David

Maple Valley, WA

Tour: 07/12/15

Overall rating: rating 5 of 5

The tour enabled me to visit a variety of cities in Italy. Stacy provided excellent guidance and information to make the most out of our stops. Adrian (bus driver) was very professional and courteous allowing us to have a pleasant and safe transition from city to city. I enjoyed traveling to the different cities and being able to discover their uniqueness.

Favorite "WOW" moment

"Stacy's surprise visit for us to the U.S. W.W.II. cemetery/memorial in Florence was awesome. I appreciated being able to learn, remember, and pay my respects to the American soldiers who died for our country. It was a brief stop, but a very special experience I will cherish."

Linda

Adelaide,

Tour: 07/12/15

Overall rating: rating 5 of 5

Perfect way fi travel. Stress free in regards to logistics without the confines of a guided tour.

Favorite "WOW" moment

"Lake Como"

David

Torrance, CA

Tour: 06/28/15

Overall rating: rating 4 of 5

We enjoyed our tour of Italy. We would have enjoyed it more, if it hadn't so HOT (35C). Our fault for booking in the summer. The heat really sapped our strength and made it difficult to see everything we wanted to. We found 2 nights in each location was not ebough time for us. Just as we seemed to get our bearings we were on to another location. Rick provided excellent advice in his book -Travel in Italy can be frustrating at times - Just go with the flow, relax and enjoy the Italian culture.

Favorite "WOW" moment

"There were many: Riding down the Grand Canal in Venice on the Vaperetto. Strolling along Lake Como in Varenna. Eating a "Porketta" sandwich at the market in Florence. Gelato every night as we strolled the streets absorbing the Italian Vibe!"

Kelly

Austin, TX

Tour: 06/28/15

Overall rating: rating 5 of 5

It was great! The hotels were wonderful. The assistance that I received from Donato was fabulous.

Favorite "WOW" moment

"Lake Como was stunning."

Susan

Poway, CA

Tour: 06/28/15

Overall rating: rating 5 of 5

The information provided before tour was an accurate description. I was the only single person in the group, but the other tour members were friendly and inviting. The hotel locations were excellent. It was easy to go exploring quickly after arrivals and into the evening hours. The tour guide was extremely helpful and informative with suggestions and tips for each city. He was easily approachable and had a good sense of humor.

Favorite "WOW" moment

"Hiking in Lake Como and actually finding Italy's shortest river up in the hills. The trail wasn't very well marked, but I went with another tour member and eventually we found it. There were so many other "wow" moments for me!"

Katy

Portland, OR

Tour: 06/28/15

Overall rating: rating 5 of 5

The "My Way" concept is brilliant! We would do a "My Way" tour again in a heart beat. Having the hotels and transportation arranged for us left us the time and energy to concentrate on planning the important things: what to see and where to eat! Our guide, Donato, was accessible, helpful, and entertaining. He was happy to let us do things "our way", unless he knew we were really making a mistake .

Favorite "WOW" moment

"The beautiful city of Assissi was a surprise. It was peaceful, full of things to do and see, and had our favorite hotel, Hotel Umbra."

Leslee

Pleasanton, CA

Tour: 06/21/15

Overall rating: rating 5 of 5

I think I am a long lost Italian soul after this experience. Seriously, it was better than we imagined. We fell into each region as if we were a "local" of course the locals wouldn't see it that way, but the feeling was there for us. We appreciated all the preparations being taking off our shoulder by joining the Rick Steve's My Way Tour. We loved how Trina just gave us enough information and tips to send us off into the world, which we successfully navigated through by her insights & the book.

Favorite "WOW" moment

"Tuscany landscape was by far was a highlight;San Gimignano and Assisi, but the hike from Livorno to Montaroso was our favorite. Biking in Livorno along the coast was refreshing. The entire area and the five towns were the best."

John

Plano, TX

Tour: 06/21/15

Overall rating: rating 5 of 5

My wife and I were able to thoroughly enjoy the trip, not having to worry about travel and lodging details. Trina and our tour bus driver Adrian were wonderful, i.e. knowledgeable, professional and personable. It was great though having the freedom to see and do what we wanted to do outside of the tour group. However, we thoroughly enjoyed the company of everyone in our group!

Favorite "WOW" moment

"For me it was our time in Florence."

Jacquelyn

Glen Burnie, MD

Tour: 06/21/15

Overall rating: rating 5 of 5

The tour was wonderful! It was perfect for us because we didn't have to deal with logistics of hotels and transportation to each city. The tour itinerary was exactly what we were looking for, including Lake Como and Cinque Terre, which are difficult to find on other tour itineraries. We loved being able to do our own thing during the day, but still get valuable information from our Tour Manager, Trina.

Favorite "WOW" moment

"Our favorite "wow" moment was hiking up to the Castello above Varenna and looking out onto the beautiful Lake Como. It was gorgeous and well worth the steep hike! Assisi really surprised us as well. We loved it. It was so beautiful and quaint and less touristy than some of the other places."

Mary

Plano, TX

Tour: 06/21/15

Overall rating: rating 5 of 5

We were a little leery of taking any type of organized tour, but after our 13 days in Italy with Trina, we would sign on for another! The My Way tour was just what we wanted - no stress and plenty of freedom! Our transportation between locations was mainly by bus, and our driver, Adrian, was one of the best! We felt very safe in his hands even in scary city traffic. One of the best things about the tour was the itinerary itself, alternating between cities and more rural sites.

Favorite "WOW" moment

"Lake Como was never on my radar as a "must see", but when we arrived in Varenna, I changed my mind. Our hotel, the Royal Victoria, was between the town square and the lake. When we walked around the hotel and first saw the lake itself, crystal blue and framed in mountains, it literally took my breath away. The hotel had a lovely eating/drinking patio and pool overlooking the lake, and it was there that I realized that I LOVE ITALY."

Lee

Plano, TX

Tour: 06/21/15

Overall rating: rating 5 of 5

This turned out to be everything we hoped it would and then some. The Rick Steves Tour Manager was wonderful. I rate Trina a 10 out of 10. Personable, professional and a warm and engaging personality. Between Trina and our bus driver Adrian, I always felt we were in the very best hands.

Favorite "WOW" moment

"I think it was seeing the Tuscany countryside from the back deck of the Cooking School we visited. Just like a picture post card."

Rebekah

Menlo Park, CA

Tour: 06/14/15

Overall rating: rating 4 of 5

We had a great time on the tour! Loved our tour guide and bus driver, and all of the selected cities. We wouldn't have wanted to miss any of the cities that we went to! We felt lucky to have a really knowledgeable tour guide in Don.

Favorite "WOW" moment

"when we walked into our hotel room at the hotel victoria in varenna on lake como. Incredible."

Lizanne

Chico, CA

Tour: 06/14/15

Overall rating: rating 5 of 5

This was our first My Way tour, our third Steves tour. We enjoy both types of tours. Don did a great job of being available on a daily basis and helping with whatever we needed to make our own adventures. He has the perfect personality and presence for this job.

Favorite "WOW" moment

"Many! The thunderstorms in Rome, creating spectacular cloud formations and flooding the Piazza San Marco just enough for nighttime reflections and the splashing of people dancing to the orchestra. The views along the hike from Monte Rosso to Vernazza. The Saio vineyard tour, lunch, and tasting we took with members of the tour. The food everywhere!"

Kelly

Marion, OH

Tour: 06/14/15

Overall rating: rating 5 of 5

This was our first time traveling in abroad. We picked the Italy my way tour to support us and to help us to see a good portion of Italy. We felt as if it was a perfect fit for us. We were able to spend our days how we wanted but still had the support of our trip escort and met some wonderful people on our tour also.

Favorite "WOW" moment

"Our hotel room in Assisi had a wonderful view. I hardly wanted to leave the balcony we had."

Steve

Marion, OH

Tour: 06/14/15

Overall rating: rating 5 of 5

This tour was perfect for what we were looking for; the freedom to plan and do the things- see the places and museums we wanted to while having the amazing support of our escort. Our largest concern was the travel and hotel arrangements and that is exactly what is handled by the Rick Steve's tour office. The 13 days flew by as we were getting a fantastic overview of this wonderful country and the Italian culture and people. We could have asked for a better tour for our first trip to Italy.

Favorite "WOW" moment

"It is certainly hard to pick only one "wow" moment but the hill town of San Giamangiano was the one picked as the stop that was to be determined by the escort while on the tour. It blew me away for its beauty, and character of a midevil village. I could have pulled the luggage off there and stayed for a long time."

E Leigh

Sherman Oaks, CA

Tour: 06/14/15

Overall rating: rating 4 of 5

Great hotels, good breakfasts, very helpful & dedicated tour manager, nice bus, good scheduling.

Favorite "WOW" moment

"My favorite sight was the Roman Forum--mind boggling in its scope and amazingly preserved."

Gary

Chico, CA

Tour: 06/14/15

Overall rating: rating 5 of 5

This was our third Steves tour, and first My Way. We loved it. Our accommodations, bus, bus driver and escort were all awesome. Donato was an exceptional escort, which is ironic for a tour that is supposed to be self-guided! However, he was terrific for setting the tone at each town, very engaging with all of the tour members, careful to not go into full-blown "guide mode" and try to direct our interests--but always willing to offer tips and suggestions if we asked. Just a super good guy!

Favorite "WOW" moment

"Many members of our group organized a tour of Saio Winery in Assisi. During a walk in the vineyards, we turned a corner, and there on the hill above us was the town of Assisi. It was breathtaking. We were in the right place, at the right time, and wonderfully rewarded for taking a chance on an off the beaten track experience. Many of us discovered on this trip the joy of seeking experiences not in guide books, but just going our own way!"

Andrew

Jupiter, FL

Tour: 06/07/15

Overall rating: rating 5 of 5

The My Way tour was ideal for our family. It was a great experience from beginning to end. The itinerary was balanced between small towns and larger cities. The hotels were charming and centrally located. The bus was new and comfortable with plenty of room to spread out. Our tour escort and bus driver were helpful. We plan to book another Rick Steves My Way tour in the future because this experience was so positive. It's the ideal way to travel.

Favorite "WOW" moment

"We had multiple "wow" moments. One of our favorites was the view from the hike from Monterosso to Vernazza. We also had a wow moment in Varenna sitting lakeside at Bar Il Molo for a drink at sunset in perfect weather. Assisi also wowed us with its tranquility - that was our favorite hotel."

Diane

Pacifica, CA

Tour: 06/07/15

Overall rating: rating 2 of 5

Auto grills dangerous for theft One person had wallet taken And attempted robbery of items on bus when unattended Was averted but lots of items could have been stolen

Favorite "WOW" moment

"The David and the Vatican"

Pauline

Saint Louis, MO

Tour: 06/07/15

Overall rating: rating 5 of 5

Typically. My husband & i don't do tours-- but this tour met our needs- it allow for flexibility at the same time Giving us some support

Favorite "WOW" moment

"Assisi. - by all means - also the going away dinner i enjoyed i was disappointed by the intro -.u need some icebreakers Not enough folks really got to know one another fortunately our group bonded very quickly.!..which was such fun! but we wer just blessed"

Philip

Loveland, OH

Tour: 06/07/15

Overall rating: rating 5 of 5

Excellent trip! Tour director (Kathleen Cavalier) was outstanding at both leading the "Italy your way" tour and developing rapport among the people on the trip! Italy is beautiful! Your trip preparation information and books were extremely helpful!

Favorite "WOW" moment

"There were many "wow" moments...really enjoyed dinner up in the hills in Varenna! We also stopped at the Florence American Cemetery which was an emotional moment."

Joanne

Georgetown, TX

Tour: 06/07/15

Overall rating: rating 5 of 5

We loved the my way tour, which gave us the freedom to choose what we focused on yet removed the stress of needing to make our own travel arrangements between cities and hotel choices.

Favorite "WOW" moment

"Venice was awesome, Assisi amazing, Rome not as wonderful as I had imagined. I don't think I really had just one "wow" moment."

Angela

Columbia, MD

Tour: 06/07/15

Overall rating: rating 5 of 5

Our tour was everything we hoped it would be! We chose a "My Way" tour so that we could do the things we wanted, but were also interested in having someone else share information with us, and take care of travel details to get us from city to city. The trip was well organized-beginning with a city, and then a restful place, then back to a city. Lake Como was truly our favorite place and very relaxing. Can't wait for more "Our Way" tours so we can share more adventures!

Favorite "WOW" moment

"The "wow" moment for us were the hill towns of Central Italy, especially Assisi and San Gimignano. Another impromptu trip was the American cemetery outside of Florence - it was very beautiful! The "pot luck" happy hour that Kathleen, our escort, planned for us in Assisi was fabulous and a part of the trip we will long remember."

Franklin

Saint Louis, MO

Tour: 06/07/15

Overall rating: rating 5 of 5

The My Way Italy Tour was great! I am not a tour person; however, the My Way format allowed me the enjoyment of planning places to see, things to do, and restaurants (and bars) to visit without worrying about transportation and lodging. Each of the six cities was completely different from the city you were leaving or the city you were travelling to. The bus was very comfortable, the driver very professional, and our guide very helpful. The 28 persons on our tour became fast friends.

Favorite "WOW" moment

"My "wow" moment was on the bus trip to Varenna when we came out of a tunnel and saw Lake Como and the surrounding mountains for the first time. What a view, what a place! I would like to revisit this area."

Dorothy

Delavan, IL

Tour: 05/24/15

Overall rating: rating 5 of 5

Transportation arrangements were great - nice bus, friendly, competent driver (Dino, good escort. Hotels were good, too. Staff at hotels friendly overall (Florence hotel staff least friendly). Loved cities on the tour, especially Lake Como, Cinque Terre, and Assisi.

Favorite "WOW" moment

"See seeing church where animals sacrificed BC in Assisi. Loved everything about Assisi."

Leslie

Scituate, MA

Tour: 05/24/15

Overall rating: rating 5 of 5

Our leader, Catherine, was wonderful! See was a wealth of knowledge and had a very calming aura about her. I will talk about the tour forever and will recommend it to everyone.

Favorite "WOW" moment

"Everyday was great! If you asked me which day was the best, I could not tell you. I am not sure what my "wow" moment would be."

Martha

Scituate, MA

Tour: 05/24/15

Overall rating: rating 5 of 5

Wonderful

Steven

Mercer Island, WA

Tour: 05/24/15

Overall rating: rating 5 of 5

Perfect tour. We've avoided tours for three decades and traveled to Europe dozens of times but the My Way Concept was perfect. Provided transportation but left us free to choose restaurants, tours etc. Our Escort Kathleen was unbelievably good. You guys should clone her. She was expert in everything including even places to run in the morning, important for me since I am a fervid runner. I'd love more of these tours.

Belinda

Mercer Island, WA

Tour: 05/24/15

Overall rating: rating 5 of 5

The My Way idea is brilliant. My husband and I generally travel on our own but the combination of lack of stress from driving around Europe ourselves and then the freedom to do what we wanted, when we wanted, once you got us to our destination made the trip perfect.

Favorite "WOW" moment

"Given that our group did not "tour" together or dine together, the amazing aspect of the trip to me was how strongly we jelled as a group. The two happy hour events and the group dinner at the end that Kathleen arranged made that all possible."

Gladys

Miami, FL

Tour: 05/17/15

Overall rating: rating 5 of 5

Second RS tour but first "My Way" tour-exceeded my expectations in every way. Stacy, our tour leader, was amazing!! Her energy, positive attitude and knowledge made this trip super special. RS tours are exceptional because of their guides and Stacy was amazing!!

Favorite "WOW" moment

"Traveling on the vaporetto on the GRAND CANAL and seeing "open up" and reveal its wonders. The surprise visit to the American Military Cemetary outside of Florence on Memorial Day. Incredibly beautiful and moving. Florence-again-never bores me. Visiting the Forum and Colosseum in Rome at a very slow pace."

Jennifer

Milwaukie, OR

Tour: 05/17/15

Overall rating: rating 4 of 5

I booked a My Way Tour, which is great for knowledgeable people or those who like to research and plan their own itineraries within a basic trip structure. There was little information provided by the guide upon entering new regions or cities, similar to the more hands-off kind of tour I've been on before via Intrepid. This was fine with me because I was prepared. The trip was fabulous, barring incidents of food-borne illness. A trip of a lifetime.

Favorite "WOW" moment

"I was bowled over by the beauty of Venice, but I was definitely wowed by the size and beauty of the David by Michelangelo in Florence. So hard to choose!"

Carla

Lacey, WA

Tour: 05/17/15

Overall rating: rating 4 of 5

This was my first trip to Italy, and my first Rick Steves tour. Initially I thought the tour as set (6 areas / 12 nights) would be fine. I found that basically 1.5 days in one area / city was not nearly enough time to see an area. Other than that, the tour was great and it gave me a good taste of what Italy is like, and where I might like to return to.

Favorite "WOW" moment

"There were so many, but I would have to say seeing "The David" at the Academia Gallery in Florence. It was more than I expected, and very awe-inspiring. As a result, I immediately read a Michelangelo biography and have researched more once at home."

Rebecca

Ocala, FL

Tour: 05/17/15

Overall rating: rating 5 of 5

This was a wonderful trip and I think we hit some of the top locations in Italy. Not having to worry about booking travel and hotels was a blessing. The majority of the hotels were above my expectation and gave us relief on trying to find the hotel and the opportunity to study up on the upcoming city we were to visit while on the bus. Most wonderful of all is we had a great group of people in our tour who were ready to share restaurants and hidden spots they had discovered.

Favorite "WOW" moment

"loved going to the American National Cemetary outside Florence on Memorial Day. A great reminder of the sacrifice America made to fight in WWII and nice to see that Italy recognized this by Joining in on the memorial services. Also loved the small hill towns in Tuscany and Umbria. So beautiful and a nice respite from Venice and Rome's crowds."

Edward

Issaquah, WA

Tour: 05/17/15

Overall rating: rating 5 of 5

Very pleased, first tour. Like the "My Way" concept. Hope you develop more itineraries.

Favorite "WOW" moment

"#1: Part of a very diverse group, "tour newbies", 8 states across the country: empty nesters, mothers with daughters and sisters traveling together. As the trip progressed we had conversations sharing travel insights as well as our personal stories. At the end we had a couple of group gatherings. Sadness as we parted. The group experience will be remembered as much as the sights seen. #2: Basilica of St. Francis: 3 incredible sacred spaces. #3: Vital Urban Life: village or city."

Nancy

Issaquah, WA

Tour: 05/17/15

Overall rating: rating 5 of 5

This is my husband and my first ever tour. I really enjoyed the "My Way" experience. The itinerary was fantastic and the group experience was great. We enjoyed having lodging and transportation taken care of so we could concentrate on sight seeing and experiencing "La Dolce Vita". Our hotels were memorable and very centrally located.

Favorite "WOW" moment

"It would have to be my experience at Rome's Pantheon. It is hard to believe the temple-now-church is over 2,000 years old. After entering the building I was able to photograph the light beam streaming through the dome's open portico. As I was doing this, an impromptu choir was filling the space with the most beautiful sacred music. Wow!"

Diane

Irvine, CA

Tour: 05/17/15

Overall rating: rating 5 of 5

Italy My Way was perfect for us. The hotel, breakfasts, transportation all covered was a load off our minds and option to hang out with other intelligent English speaking travelers or to explore on our own was what we needed. We ended up loving the group and tour guide, enjoyed breakfasts with our group, found different group members to hangout with on some days. The agenda was great. Bring two cities we enjoyed a few hours in a Tuscan walled city which was a lovely surprise.

Favorite "WOW" moment

"I had two wow monments: on Memorial Day we visited the American Memorial outside of Florence. I highly recommend this stop. Our walk in the hills of Manarola we stilled to watch twilight descend over the town and sea. While enjoying the view the town church bells rang out - 6pm, time to head home they seemed to say. The bells started distant but built to sound as though several churches had bells ringing at once. Over a few minutes they reached a rythmic cresendo followed by slowing to quiet"

John

Mendham, NJ

Tour: 05/17/15

Overall rating: rating 5 of 5

SIMPLY - EXCELLENT

Favorite "WOW" moment

"THE UPFRONT VIEW FROM THE SPEED BOAT THAT PICKED US UP RIGHT FROM HOTEL ALLA AND WENT DOWN THE GRAND CANAL IN VENICE BRINGING US TO THE BUS FOR OUR NEXT DESTINATION - LAKE COMO."

Katharine

Columbus, OH

Tour: 05/17/15

Overall rating: rating 5 of 5

The overall tour experience was better than I could've expected. The "My Way" your was a great way to travel, it eliminated the stress of trying to plan trains and hotels, but instead allowed us to plan what we wanted to do each day. If we had any questions about the sites our guide was able to answer them at breakfast or throughout the day.

Favorite "WOW" moment

"My "wow" experience was the first city, Venice. Riding around the canals and trying to navigate (which was close to impossible) was an amazing way to truly indulge in the culture."

Gail

Wilson, NC

Tour: 05/17/15

Overall rating: rating 5 of 5

This tour was my dream of mine for many years and it was as wonderful as I had hoped it would be! I loved the My Way as it took all the work out of the trip and still connected us with a great group of people and great escort.The hotels were great as they were very central and lovely. The itinerary was perfect and I loved how the small, quiet towns were sandwiched between busy cities.

Favorite "WOW" moment

"I was expecting Florence to be my "wow" moment as I was most excited to see everything there and I did love it when we arrived in Florence...it was great. But my "wow" moment was coming out of the train station in Monterosso al Mare and seeing the beautiful beach and aqua Ligurian Sea! I really loved the the Cinque Terre towns and our Hotel Punta Mesco in Monteross was perfect! We were very welcomed there and all the staff were so warm and helpful."

Susan

Batavia, OH

Tour: 05/17/15

Overall rating: rating 5 of 5

I started the tour after traveling alone for 2 weeks from Paris, Bruge, Bavaria, and Switzerland. I was not thrilled to be with a group or guide, but that lifted quickly. Stacy (our guide) made this an awesome trip and our group was very nice as well. I was with my sister for this portion of the trip and everything was so smooth and if not, than Stacy took care of any snags.

Favorite "WOW" moment

"Wow. That is not easy to answer. Going to the American Italian Memorial on Memorial Day was one. Some of the meals were definite wow moments, including the great last night dinner Stacy set up. I loved the view from the patio at our hotel in Assisi, as well as, the Basilica at the Vatican. I really wanted to see the Rialto Bridge and the Trevvi fountain, so I was wowed when they were under renovation. LOL."

Robert

Laguna Niguel, CA

Tour: 05/17/15

Overall rating: rating 5 of 5

We met our "MY WAY" group of 24 travelers in Venice and were graced with a great guide, Stacy, who gave us just enough advice and structure to keep us all together and encouraged us to be safe but adventurous! We enjoyed good weather and reasonable crowds at popular sites as we were in Italy in late May. Because we were on the road leaving Florence on Memorial Day, Stacy arranged a stop by the American WWII cemetery outside of Florence, which was much appreciated! Great Trip!

Favorite "WOW" moment

"My wife and I have found it impossible to identify a "favorite" moment or site. They were all the best, until we saw the next one! I have to say that the Spanish Steps in Rome is a magic hang out location."

Alison

Laguna Niguel, CA

Tour: 05/17/15

Overall rating: rating 5 of 5

We chose this tour so we could use our time to focus on Italy rather than on our basic needs. The itinerary was a perfect sequence for us and we were pleasantly surprised by the quality of each accommodation and the comfort of the transportation provided. Our escort was enthusiastic, energetic, and knowledgeable and she made an invaluable contribution to our outstanding experience.

Favorite "WOW" moment

"I do not have a favorite wow moment, only abundant wow moments: The view of Venice from Dosodoro, hanging out on the Spanish Steps, seeing David again. The structure of the tour made it possible to ease into vacation mode much faster than it takes when I must also be attending to such details as where to go, how to get there, where to stay, etc. By Rome I was so relaxed that the being-in-the-moment moments had become an all day long occurrence. And that is a wow!"

Miles

Bainbridge Island, WA

Tour: 05/17/15

Overall rating: rating 5 of 5

With limited time for vacation It was so nice having our lodging and transportation figured out for us. At the same time the My Way tour gave us the flexibility to do our own thing. Despite some nasty weather in Varena, there was always something new to see and places to explore.

Favorite "WOW" moment

"Evenings in Venice, ferry rides on all Como, swimming in the lingorian sea, grappa buying, sunsets in Assisi, Rome - it was all good!"

Mary Anne

Concord, NH

Tour: 05/12/15

Overall rating: rating 5 of 5

This tour met or exceeded our expectations in every way. Our escort Kathleen was amazing and the "My Way" concept worked perfectly for us. We loved having the opportunity to make our own schedule for each day, but not having to worry about accommodations and transportation. We will definitely choose a "My Way" tour the next time we go to Europe.

Favorite "WOW" moment

"Hiking the trail from Monterosso to Vernazza in the Cinque Terre. Outstanding views the whole way!"

Ellen

Pittsburgh, PA

Tour: 05/12/15

Overall rating: rating 4 of 5

It was well designed, and considering how much was covered in a relatively short time, an enjoyable experience that didn't feel rushed.. It certainly gave us ideas on places we'd like to return to and explore further

Favorite "WOW" moment

"Hard to choose. Having never been to Venice before it was a series of wonderful moments and quite astounding experiences. We went to a terrific concert given by Interpreti Veneziani there in an old church. Perhaps hearing Vivaldi in Venice was a true WOW moment. Lake Como was also new and the ferry down the Lake was lovely. Our guide, Kathleen, also organized a marvelous dinner up in the hills above the Lake with great local food and drink."

Laura

Chardon, OH

Tour: 05/12/15

Overall rating: rating 5 of 5

Kathleen was a very good tour guide. She was friendly and resourceful. :)

Favorite "WOW" moment

"The entire trip was a wow moment"

Ronald

Bluffton, SC

Tour: 05/12/15

Overall rating: rating 5 of 5

This trip met or exceeded all of my expectations on my fist visit to Italy as well as my first tour. The hotel accommodations were all clean, comfortable and centrally located in each of the cities visited. The bus transportation provided was super - roomy and clean. I wouldn't have changed the tour itinerary. The locations were great.

Favorite "WOW" moment

"Each of the towns were special of themselves. The small scenic villages were quiet and a nice change of pace from the larger ones. My overall wow moment(s) was the art and history I got to experience within Venice, Florence and Rome. Overall, I enjoyed the incredible food, wine and discovering all of the locations we encountered throughout the trip."

Thomas

Concord, NH

Tour: 05/12/15

Overall rating: rating 4 of 5

The tour was as described in the literature and met my expectations.

Favorite "WOW" moment

"Sitting on the steps of the Santa Maria Della Salute Church, looking across the Grand Canal and feeling at home in Venice."

Mary Anne

Belfast, ME

Tour: 05/10/15

Overall rating: rating 5 of 5

The tour was everything we hoped it would be and more. We knew the places we were to visit were where we wanted to go, but we never envisioned how beautiful they'd be. The hotels were perfect and Rozanne, our guide, was so enthusiastic about our destinations, it was difficult she'd been to those places many times before.

Favorite "WOW" moment

"There were many, but walking into our hotel room in Lake Como and seeing that view was heart-stopping. A wonderful birthday gift that I could not stop photographing and sending it to friends and family back home."

Ruth

Columbia, MD

Tour: 05/10/15

Overall rating: rating 5 of 5

Everything about our "My Way: Italy" tour was amazing! This was our first tour, and the "My Way" experience was perfect for us. Our guide did a fabulous job of providing support and guidance along the way which made transitioning from place to place stress free. The accommodations were excellent and all of our rooms were clean, spacious, and in convenient locations. The ability to spend two nights in each location gave us the time we needed to thoroughly explore and enjoy the sights.

Favorite "WOW" moment

"It is difficult to pick just one "wow" moment from our tour because we really loved every single part of our trip. One special moment was our stop in Montepulciano. This was the hill town that our guide chose to stop at while traveling through Tuscany. What a treat! We tasted Concutti Wine with the owner and had the pleasure of visiting the Mazzetti copper workshop where we watched as a personalized copper medallion was made just for us."

Adi

Woodacre, CA

Tour: 05/10/15

Overall rating: rating 5 of 5

The tour had everything I hoped for: the choice to be with people or to head out on my own, great hotels that I didn't have to book for myself, a tour escort who was knowledgeable, generous,and who got our group where we needed to go in a timely mannerwith what appeared to be an unflappable demeanor. I enjoyed having my own room and was pleasantly surprised to find my accommodations as beautiful as everyone else's. I could eat breakfast, lunch or dinner alone or with other tour participants.

Favorite "WOW" moment

"Being the first person to get in to the Galleria dell'Accademia to see DAVIDE. I was alone in that room with DAVIDE for about 5-6 minutes. I thank the Rick Steves pre tour guide book and our escort, Rozanne, for that "wow" moment. The room quickly filled with people but I was still glowing with my private showing."

Karen

Overland Park, KS

Tour: 05/10/15

Overall rating: rating 5 of 5

Outstanding tour! This is my third Rick Steves tour, and the first "My Way." I really enjoyed the "my way" concept, which afforded me the opportunity to customize my travel experience. The tour escort, hotels, and transportation between cities exceeded my expectations.

Favorite "WOW" moment

"I never expected to have such a moving experience while visiting the Basilica of San Francesco in Assisi. Having a monk say a prayer in front of the tomb of St. Francis for my brother, who was undergoing surgery back in the U.S., was especially moving. Hearing the church bells in Florence, Assisi, Montepulciano, Varenna, Venice, and Monterosso, was very peaceful."

Andrew

Columbia, MD

Tour: 05/10/15

Overall rating: rating 5 of 5

It was the perfect balance of organization (travel arrangements and lodging) with free time of our own to explore. Two days in each location was just the right amount of time. The itinerary was nicely blended to mix up the time spent in heavier tourist areas with the less congested locations. Our guide was available with helpful information and suggestions, but we were always able to make our own plans. The hotels were all excellent in terms of locations, service and amenities.

Favorite "WOW" moment

"Getting the first overlook view of Vernazza after hiking the Cinque Terre trail from Monterosso."

Lorna

Fayetteville, GA

Tour: 05/10/15

Overall rating: rating 5 of 5

This tour has a wonderful itinerary allowing the participant to really do whatever we want to each day. We get to see the "biggies" including Venice, Florence, Rome, but also have some wonderful relaxing time enjoying lakes, mountain hikes and small towns. this was my very first My Way Tour, after taking several fully guided tours, and I loved it! It was so nice to pick the museums and activities we wanted to do and yet get lots of help from our guide when we needed it.

Favorite "WOW" moment

"Our guide took us to the special little town of Montepulciano and we set off for 4 hours of walking and exploring this beautiful place. We especially enjoyed visiting Cesare in his Copper shop, he is a character! And also the wine tasting with friendly Adamo, truly a delightful day."

Karen

Anacortes, WA

Tour: 05/10/15

Overall rating: rating 4 of 5

Still puzzling over the experience. Italy felt more intense - more "educational", less pleasurable. We enjoy soaking up a place. We came in to Venice a day early and took an extra day in Rome (mandatory), and did try to pace ourselves but it felt rushed. With the travel we really had 1.5 days in each city, not enough. I might have skipped Varenna to give more time to the other places.

Favorite "WOW" moment

"The Basilica was spectacular with all the colors in the frescos - Francis' tomb moving. A lovely evening on the plaza drinking wine watching dusk turn to night. We also enjoyed a wonderful romantic dinner at the Golden Eye along the Arno as the Ponte Vecchio was illuminated, after we had walked down from Piazza Michelangelo. We also had an exciting boat ride over rough seas when the weather eliminated many stops along the Cinque Terre."

David

Belfast, ME

Tour: 05/10/15

Overall rating: rating 5 of 5

I was hesitant about traveling with a "group" but was convinced that the "my way" tour would be the way to try on a first trip to Italy. The group thing worked out great as everyone was pretty much agreed with the sharing a bit of what you did for the day with minimal socializing and leave me alone when we wanted to do our own schedule. The trip turned out to be beyond our expectations.

Favorite "WOW" moment

"1) Seeing the Grand Canal in Venice for the first time and, 2) Walking into our hotel (villa) room in Varenna on my wife's birthday and opening the window to a spectacular view of Lake Como and the mountains."

Linda

Fort Worth, TX

Tour: 05/03/15

Overall rating: rating 5 of 5

My second Italy tour experience with Rick Steves & CO did not disappoint! What a great trip and I loved doing it MY WAY! It was so convenient to have all the lovely hotels booked, the travel plans set, and the lively Amanda to help us along the way. Yet, my two friends and I were free to plan our days as we wanted, together as a trio or single if one wanted art and the others sought adventure.

Favorite "WOW" moment

"Sorry, cannot pick just one! Arriving on the vaporetti going down the Grand Canal was magnificent. The lovely stroll along Lake Como going from the village of Varenna to the boat docks...a photo around every turn. Plus, the charming Precious Stones Museum in Florence, then coming upon the Mosaic Store/Studio directly across the street from Hotel California where a family of artists still creates the very same mosaic art with the very same traditional tools we just saw in the museum."

Mark

Poway, CA

Tour: 05/03/15

Overall rating: rating 4 of 5

It was an energetic tour that saturated our senses. The guide and driver were professional and friendly, but not overly so (this is good). The group was amazingly compatible, always cooperative and punctual. We had as much or as little to do with fellow tourers, which I value for a 'My Way' experience. There was a healthy mix of urban and rural Italy. The weather was excellent throughout, and this may account for the throngs of other tourists, especially in Venice and Cinque Terre.

Favorite "WOW" moment

"There is much to recommend. Boarding the vaporetto in Venice and the first cruise on the Grand Canal was the culmination of many years of anticipation, and to finally arrive there was very cool. Close seconds were the various public squares of Italy, perhaps my favorite being St. Mark's in Venice in the early morning before the hordes from out of town arrived."

Gloria

Weaverville, NC

Tour: 04/26/15

Overall rating: rating 4 of 5

WE had a wonderful time. Sarah (our host) was wonderful. This was an unguided tour & really worked well for us. Sarah was available but we have all free time. I enjoyed the italian lessons on the bus + WiFi. We hope you expand the list of Unguided tour destinations.

Favorite "WOW" moment

"LOVED VENICE. we were surprised how much we enjoyed ASsisi which would otherwise not been on our itinerary"

Erin

Seattle, WA

Tour: 04/26/15

Overall rating: rating 5 of 5

My sister and I were travelling with our parents at the "My Way" tour was PERFECT for our family. The amount of stress relieved by having our transportation from city to city taken care of was huge!

Favorite "WOW" moment

"I loved the differences of every stop. Overall, the food was AMAZING! Our tour guide gave some great restaurant recommendations."

Amy

Kirkland, WA

Tour: 04/26/15

Overall rating: rating 5 of 5

We had an EXCELLENT time on the My Way Italy tour; we are so thankful we chose the Rick Steves Tour. Sarah was incredible...knowledgeable, caring, fun to be around, and extremely helpful. Having hotels and transportation arranged for us made us able to relax and spend our time focusing on the attractions of each city instead of the logistics. I would absolutely recommend this tour to friends and family!

Favorite "WOW" moment

"I was constantly saying "wow" the first few days in Venice. This was my first European trip and I was in awe of the beauty and uniqueness of Venice and all the city had to offer... great museums, never ending walks, and delicious food."

Cindy

Shoreline, WA

Tour: 04/26/15

Overall rating: rating 5 of 5

This is a combination of Scott and Cindy's evaluation. The My Way format worked very well for us. We really liked not having to worry about transportation and hotels. This gave us the freedom to plan and do things we wanted to do on our own time. It was nice having "quiet" cities in between "busy" cities such as Florence and Rome. We had a great group and tour guide. Our bus driver Mossimo did a great job and was friendly.

Favorite "WOW" moment

"We both loved Lake Como. We would probably not have gone there had it not been part of the tour. The hotel was very nice and those two days were very relaxing. The food was excellent and it was a great place to walk and eat gelato from Riva!"

Michael

Lynnwood, WA

Tour: 04/26/15

Overall rating: rating 5 of 5

Since this was my first trip to Europe and Italy it was journey long anticipated. We felt that the tour gave us a very broad exposure to Italy as we seemed to hit the big bang areas. All of the cities were unique and had their own charm. Our escort Sarah gave us a great introduction to each city and valuable tips on the best of in each local. Our group seemed to be very like minded and meshed very well.

Favorite "WOW" moment

"My 'WOW"moment should be something like seeing David or the Sistine Chapel but for me it was the people of Italy. Chef Moreno at Il Caminetto telling how his family built the building the ristorante was housed500 years ago and sharinghis risotto recipe with me. The lady in Monterosso who spoke no English but told us about the cheese in her deli case with great patience. The waitress in Assisi who loved Bruno Mar's "Uptown Funk" as much as I. "A very good Song""

Joan

Dallas, TX

Tour: 04/26/15

Overall rating: rating 4 of 5

Alternating cities and countryside towns provided balance to experiencing Italy for the first time. Having transportation and accomodations already arranged freed us to focus on how to enjoy each day. I liked being part of an independent group of travelers. Sarah prepared us in advance for each location and led an orientation walking tour shortly after arrival that was helpful.

Favorite "WOW" moment

"Each time there was a panoramic view (and there were several!) - climbing St. Marks Basilica in Venice to stand among the horses, the first time we turned a corner and saw the snow capped Alps near Lake Como, hiking the trail at Cinque Terre to see Vernazza far below, the trek to the top of the Duomo for a 360 degree vista of Florence, the peacefulness and tranquility of Assisi looking out over the valley as pideons cooed."

Michael

Richardson, TX

Tour: 04/26/15

Overall rating: rating 4 of 5

Generally speaking the tour met and exceeded most of my expectations. The rooms were nice and the breakfasts were very enjoyable. Sarah was very knowledgeable on a variety of subjects, and she researched those she did not know. She did a good job of staying ahead of us (rooms, transportation, recommendations, activities...). I would have rather spent more time in Assisi or Florence then the couple hours we spent in Sienna. I really enjoyed Sarah's Italian lessons; I wish I'd spent more time

Favorite "WOW" moment

"Not sure weather it was the unbelievable tranquility in Assisi, Our unbelievable hike and scenic vistas from Monterossa to Vernazza, or St. Peter's Basilica"

Brian

Silverdale, WA

Tour: 04/26/15

Overall rating: rating 5 of 5

Tour had all the advantages and challenges that we expected. Seeing 7 separate areas in 13 days was a great sampler but just 2 nights at each locale was a part of the challenge that supported the great experience. Our tour manager Sarah was AWESOME. Time spent on the bus was learning some basic Italian, discussing what to expect next and having highlights pointed out. At each destination we got a 30 minute familiarization "walk about". Sarah was great in answering any questions.

Favorite "WOW" moment

"Can't stop at one! 1. Lake Como and looking at the Swiss Alps across the lake from our hotel window and also the Lake Como Greenway Trail hike that Sarah recommended. 2. The Basilica at Assisi and learning more about the life of St Francis (the hermitage!!). What a beautiful town! 3. The tremendous history from our walk through the Forum, Coliseum and Pantheon. The Accademia in Florence 4. Hiking the trail at Cinque Terre"

Laura

Silverdale, WA

Tour: 04/26/15

Overall rating: rating 5 of 5

It was a wonderful trip! I had previously visited the major cities, but wanted a less stressful way to enjoy Italy. We packed light (RS rolling bags), were transported from place to place, and stayed in comfortable hotels. Sarah, our tour manager, was an ever cheerful fount of knowlege, including recommendations for regional cuisine. This itinerary really appealed to us because of the varied destinations, plus we were able to see what we wanted at our own pace.

Favorite "WOW" moment

"Lake Como was breathtakingly beautiful, even during a windstorm which brought new snow to the nearby Swiss Alps visible from our hotel window. We enjoyed taking a passenger ferry across the lake to a walking trail and ending at Villa Carlotta to stroll through the gardens. Assisi was deeply special to me, especially seeing how active the Franciscan brothers are in keeping the Basilica as a living house of prayer. Their message of "Pax" appears in the landscape as well."

Nina

Atlanta, GA

Tour: 04/26/15

Overall rating: rating 5 of 5

The who;e trip was fantastic! I totally enjoyed it. Accommodations were overall very good. I even enjoyed the bus rides - the scenery was beautiful and Sarah did a great job of letting us know what was coming up, as well as giving us Italian lessons. The unexpected stops at the American Cemetery outside Florence and Sienna were wonderful. The group was also amazing - everyone got along very well.

Favorite "WOW" moment

"I can't pick one - they were all wows! If I had to chose, I would say Florence, Assisi and Lake Como were the best."

Laura

Soquel, CA

Tour: 04/26/15

Overall rating: rating 5 of 5

Loved the places we toured. Loved the pacing. Loved our tour guide, Sarah. She is the absolute best. She really had so much to do with making the tour interesting, organized, memorable, smooth, and perfectly suited for our group.

Favorite "WOW" moment

"Not any one "wow"...but Venice, Lake Como, Assisi, Siena were my favoriet places. And the art in Florence was all all time high as well."

Kerry

Orland Park, IL

Tour: 04/26/15

Overall rating: rating 5 of 5

My tour experience was excellent. The tour escort was WONDERFUL, our bus was comfortable and not crowded, and we made plenty of stops. The unexpected stop at the American Cemetery outside of Florence was so appreciated.

Favorite "WOW" moment

"Lake Como/Varenna was my "wow" from the tour. I loved the beauty, peace, quiet, and charm of the area. The people of Varenna were very welcoming. Special thanks to the Albergo del Sole Restaurante staff who were kind enough to tell me how to make pizzoccheri at home! I would love to go back again and stay longer. There is so much more to see and do."

Carole

Shoreline, WA

Tour: 04/26/15

Overall rating: rating 4 of 5

My overall positives about the trip were the wonderful people on the trip, the fabulous tour guide and being able to see so much of Italy in 13 days. It was a whirlwind tour but I enjoyed the mixture of large cities and small villages. The negatives for me was that I discovered that I do not like to move so frequently (every 2 days) while only experiencing 1/1/2 days in each location. I unfortunately also hurt my foot on the trip which limited my walking toward the end of the trip.

Favorite "WOW" moment

"My favorite place was Varenna on Lake Como. I saw beautiful gardens and thoroughly enjoyed the atmosphere around Lake Como."

Weather

Italy / Venice


Italy / Florence


Italy / Rome

Planning Tips

We've put together some specific information on what you should know about this tour before you go. You'll also find more general information about "Getting Ready for Your Tour" on our Tour FAQ.

Trip Resources

Learn more about Italy: Check out a collection of Rick's TV shows, radio interviews, and articles, plus recommended books and movies.

Transportation

Prior to your tour departure, you will receive detailed directions on how to get from the airport to your first tour hotel, as well as contact information for your first and last hotels in case you wish to book pre- or post-tour hotel accommodations.

Many tour members arrive a day or two before the tour begins — and those who don't, wish they had. This allows you ample time to get over jet lag and make the most of the first few days of the tour.

There is more than one way to get to and from your tour. Most tour members will arrange to fly into Venice and out of Rome ("multi-city" on flight booking websites). Booking round-trip to one city will require a connecting flight, train trip, or additional overnight stay in Italy.

For information about flying within Europe, ask your travel agent or check Rick's list of European budget airlines.

Read Rick's train travel and rail pass tips to decide if your travel plans merit a rail pass.

If you have additional European travel or tour questions, contact the Tour Department at 425-608-4217 or email tour@ricksteves.com.

Thinking you could use some expert, in-depth help to plan your sightseeing days? Tour members enjoy a 50 percent discount on Rick's Trip Consulting services!

Sightseeing On Your Own

When you arrive in Venice, use the Rick Steves Italy guidebook to get oriented. Try out a few words of Italian, and get over your jet lag with lots of fresh air and exercise.

Walking tours make a great introduction to any town. Use the free Rick Steves Audio Europe™ app for Apple and Android (or get free podcast/mp3 files) which includes a wealth of Venice neighborhood walks and self-guided museum tours. Check the Rick Steves Italy guidebook for museum hours (some are closed one day per week; some stay open late one day per week).

Remember, you will be in charge of your own sightseeing for ALL destinations on this trip, so you should begin planning well before you fly to Italy! To avoid wasting time in long lines, we strongly recommend you make reservations — in advance from home — for the Accademia and Uffizi Galleries in Florence, and the Vatican Museums in Rome. See the Rick Steves Italy guidebook for details on how to reserve.

Packing

The scenic trails in the Cinque Terre can be rugged in spots. While hiking boots are not necessary, you'll want to bring a pair of sturdy walking shoes.

We also recommend you bring a smart phone, tablet, or other device to assist in planning your activities, and to access Rick's Audio Europe™ app and walking tours.

For more advice on what (and what not!) to pack, see Rick's packing tips.