• Rialto Bridge in Venice
  • Shopping for carnival masks, Venice, Italy
    Venetian Carnival Masks
  • Florence
  • Michelangelo's David in Florence
  • Wine tasting at Tenuta Le Velette estate, Orvieto, Italy
    Wine Tasting in Umbria
  • St. Peter's Basilica
  • Four Rivers Fountain (Bernini), Piazza Navona, Rome, Italy
    Rome's Piazza Navona
  • Colosseum, Rome, Italy
    Colosseum in Rome

Tour Questions? See our FAQ | Call 425-608-4217

Best of Venice, Florence & Rome in 10 Days Tour

from $2,895 per person + air

Optional Single Supplement $675

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The Rick Steves Best of Venice, Florence & Rome tour begins with Venice's timeless St. Mark's Square and Basilica, then on to Michelangelo's stunning David and the Uffizi Gallery in Florence, and ends with Rome's ancient Forum, Colosseum, Pantheon, Vatican Museums, and Sistine Chapel. You'll also enjoy guided neighborhood walks, memorable meals, and full-bodied Italian wines. Italy's three greatest cities are like fine gelato — why settle for just one flavor if you can get three scoops at once? Join us for the Best of Venice, Florence & Rome in 10 Days!

Dates & Prices

2018

    • Mar 2–Mar 11 (Fr-Su)
    • $2,895 + Air

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    • Mar 9–Mar 18 (Fr-Su)
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    • Mar 19–Mar 28 (Mo-We)
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    • Mar 26–Apr 4 (Mo-We)
    • $2,895 + Air

    Opportunity to celebrate Easter in Italy!

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    • Apr 2–Apr 11 (Mo-We)
    • $3,095 + Air

    Sale! Save $300 on new bookings

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    • Apr 6–Apr 15 (Fr-Su)
    • $3,095 + Air

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    • Apr 9–Apr 18 (Mo-We)
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    • Apr 13–Apr 22 (Fr-Su)
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    • Apr 16–Apr 25 (Mo-We)
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    • Apr 20–Apr 29 (Fr-Su)
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    • Apr 27–May 6 (Fr-Su)
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    • Apr 30–May 9 (Mo-We)
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    • May 4–May 13 (Fr-Su)
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    • May 7–May 16 (Mo-We)
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    • May 11–May 20 (Fr-Su)
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    • May 14–May 23 (Mo-We)
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    • May 18–May 27 (Fr-Su)
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    • May 21–May 30 (Mo-We)
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    • May 25–Jun 3 (Fr-Su)
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    • May 28–Jun 6 (Mo-We)
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    • Jun 4–Jun 13 (Mo-We)
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    • Jun 11–Jun 20 (Mo-We)
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    • Jun 18–Jun 27 (Mo-We)
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    • Jun 25–Jul 4 (Mo-We)
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    • Jul 16–Jul 25 (Mo-We)
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    • Sep 3–Sep 12 (Mo-We)
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    • Sep 10–Sep 19 (Mo-We)
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    • Sep 17–Sep 26 (Mo-We)
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    • Sep 24–Oct 3 (Mo-We)
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    • Oct 8–Oct 17 (Mo-We)
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What's Included

  • A small, friendly group of 2428 people — half the size of most tour groups
  • Full-time services of a professional Rick Steves guide and local experts who will make the fascinating history, art, and culture of Venice, Florence, and Rome come alive for you
  • All tours and admissions — at no extra cost — covering at least 19 group sightseeing events • Venice backstreets walking tour • St. Mark's Square and Basilica • Venice lagoon excursion • Accademia art museum • Renaissance Florence walking tour • Accademia Gallery (Michelangelo's David) • Uffizi Gallery • Florence backstreets walking tour • Cooking class and lunch • Palazzo Davanzati • Umbrian wine-tasting lunch • Rome orientation • Roman Forum • Colosseum • Church of San Clemente • Pantheon • Vatican Museums and Sistine Chapel • St. Peter's Basilica • Evening walk through Rome including Trevi Fountain…and more
  • All group transportation between Venice, Florence, and Rome
  • 9 nights' accommodations (3 nights at each hotel) in memorable, centrally located hotels
  • All breakfasts and half your dinners
  • All tips for guides and driver
  • 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 2018
  • 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

Fine print: You are responsible for the cost of your drinks and free-time sightseeing. See our Tour Conditions for important details regarding everything listed above

Itinerary

Daily Activity Key
  • Light = 2–4 miles of mostly level walking throughout the day.
  • Moderate = 2–6 miles walking throughout the day with some hills and stairs.
  • Strenuous = 2–8 miles walking throughout the day with lots of hills, stairs, and uneven terrain.

Day 1: Welcome to Venice

We'll meet at 4 p.m. at our Venice hotel, deeply nestled amidst the canals, bridges, and alleyways of this magical, preserved-in-amber city. After introductions, we'll set off on an orientation walk, and then enjoy getting acquainted over a traditional Venetian dinner together. Sleep in Venice (3 nights). No bus. Walking: light.

Day 2: Historic Venice

Our local guide will join us this morning for a historical walking tour, with a modern Venetian's-eye view, through the backstreets of Venice, ending in St. Mark's Square and the shimmering, mosaic-filled Basilica. Along the way, we'll learn about the city's remarkable past and its challenging future. The afternoon and evening are free to explore the imposing Doge's Palace, maybe take in a church concert, waltz on St. Mark's Square, or pub-crawl your way through this unique city. No bus. Walking: strenuous.

Day 3: Venice's Accademia Gallery and Lagoon

This morning we'll have our first real brush with the Renaissance — Venetian-style — with a tour of the Accademia's treasure trove of great Venetian art, starring Titian, Veronese, Bellini, Tintoretto…and every shade of color imaginable. Then it's all aboard for a cruise into Venice's lagoon on our private boat. We'll visit your guide's favorite island, where you'll have free time to explore and enjoy lunch on your own. After returning, the evening is yours to discover Venice's other famous sights, or to become happily lost in the tangled maze of alleys and shops. Tonight your guide will help organize a classic, romantic gondola ride for those who are interested. Boat: 1 hour. No bus. Walking: moderate.

Day 4: Wonders of Renaissance Florence

We'll drive straight to Florence this morning, and hit the ground walking with a Renaissance tour of the city's historic center. We'll learn about Brunelleschi's magnificent cathedral dome, Ghiberti's Baptistery doors, and other creations that helped define this world-changing era. Tonight we'll share a hearty Tuscan dinner together. Sleep in Florence (3 nights). Boat: ½ hour. Bus: 4 hours. Walking: moderate.

Day 5: The Backstreets of Florence

A local scholar will join us this morning as we take a walking tour of the backstreets of Florence, with some fascinating peeks into Roman, medieval, and 19th-century Florentine life along the way. After exploring the Palazzo Davanzati, we'll continue our tour across the river, where we'll create today's tasty lunch during a fun and informative cooking class. Your afternoon will be free to see more of the city's museums. No bus. Walking: strenuous.

Day 6: The Uffizi and David

This morning we'll devote our time to the breathtaking Renaissance art of the Uffizi — home to the finest collection of Italian paintings anywhere — including works by Leonardo, Botticelli, Michelangelo, and more. After some free time to make your own Florentine discoveries, we'll gather again this evening at the Accademia Gallery to marvel at the power of Michelangelo's rough-hewn Prisoners and his greatest masterpiece, David. No bus. Walking: moderate.

Day 7: Wine Tasting, Rome at Night

This morning we'll drive into the rolling hills of Umbria, stopping for a wine tasting lunch at a family-run winery. We'll then make a bee-line for Rome, where we'll take a neighborhood orientation walk on our way to tonight's dinner together. We'll end our day as any good Roman would — with a stroll through the historic heart of the city, lacing together the classy Piazza Navona, Trevi Fountain, and the remarkably preserved, 2,000-year-old Pantheon. Sleep in Rome (3 nights). Bus: 4 hours. Walking: moderate.

Day 8: The Vatican Museums and St. Peter's

Today we'll focus on Renaissance (Catholic) Rome. At the sprawling Vatican Museums, we'll visit what seems like a limitless collection of treasures as you make your way to one of the world's most famous works of art: Michelangelo's Sistine Chapel. We'll then be introduced to the greatest church in Christendom, the awe-inspiring St. Peter's Basilica, home to Michelangelo's sublime Pietà. Your afternoon is free to wander through this immense church, climb the dome if you're feeling energetic, and explore more of the Eternal City on your own. No bus. Walking: strenuous.

Day 9: Monuments of Ancient Rome

We'll spend our morning uncovering ancient Rome, starting with a tour of multi-layered San Clemente — a 12th-century church sitting atop a fourth-century basilica and a previous Roman temple. Then we'll tour and hear vivid tales of the larger-than-life Colosseum and the birthplace of ancient Rome: the Forum. You'll be free this afternoon to wander through the nearby Palatine ruins, St. Peter-in-Chains Church (home to Michelangelo's Moses), or climb to the top of the Victor Emmanuel Monument to enjoy a panoramic city view. Tonight we'll feast together at our farewell dinner, sharing travel memories and toasting new friends. Salute! No bus. Walking: strenuous.

Day 10: Tour Over After Breakfast

Breakfast is provided, but there are no group activities today. It's a breeze to reach Rome's airports by taxi or train. Your guide will help you with any post-tour planning, leaving you well prepared for the road ahead. Arrivederci!

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 Best of Venice, Florence & Rome in 10 Days tour — among other things — you'll need to happily…

  1. Carry/roll your luggage over uneven pavement (possibly several blocks) and up stairways to reach your hotel, then up several flights of stairs to reach your room.
  2. Be on your feet, walking and standing, for up to three hours, indoors and outdoors, in all weather conditions.
  3. Sleep with street noise and no (or weak) air conditioning.
  4. After orientation and transportation lessons, be able to navigate cities on your own.

Reviews

Carol

Edina, MN

Tour: 11/20/17

Overall rating: rating 5 of 5

Our tour guide, Stacy was fantastic. She brought an artistic element to the history presented. The first walk and acclimating to each city was great for future free time. The buddy system works! All the tour guides were local and passionate about their city, culture, history and art. The most difficult thing was standing still on marble floors or cobble stone for 20-30 minute listening to guides presentations. It was helpful to move about while listening.

Favorite "WOW" moment

"The gondola ride accompanied with music in Venice was amazing! We were on our honeymoon and this was the first night with the tour group. Wow! What a start."

Xiaotong

Atlanta, GA

Tour: 11/20/17

Overall rating: rating 5 of 5

it is better than I expected and it built up my confidence to travel by myself in Europe in the future.

Favorite "WOW" moment

"Seeing the Sistine chapel in Vatican City."

Randy

Kennewick, WA

Tour: 11/20/17

Overall rating: rating 4 of 5

Had fun! Staci employed the RST method many times. Not good at the rating thing so I will just say I had fun and will share that with others.

Jeannie

Seattle, WA

Tour: 11/20/17

Overall rating: rating 5 of 5

I have been to all three cities before but never with a guide. What a difference a personable and knowledgeable guide makes! I learned so much from Stacy as well as the local guides about the history as well as current cultural practices of Italians from different regions of Italy. The clearly stated mission and values of Rick Steves travel helped to assemble a diverse and interesting group of people who had shared expectations for traveling together.

Favorite "WOW" moment

"Finally I was able, with the local guide's previewing explanations, to look at the Sistine Chapel ceiling and walls with greater understanding of what was represented and how they were created."

Patricia

San Francisco, CA

Tour: 11/17/17

Overall rating: rating 5 of 5

This was my first tour and it was a great experience. I was traveling alone and found all the group members to be very nice, enthusiastic, and fun to travel with. I especially enjoyed traveling with our guide, Lisa Anderson. She kept everything running smoothly, was extremely personable, enthusiastic, friendly, patient, and she had great stories and explanations of the sites. Although I really enjoyed all the tours and group experiences, I also appreciated having a little time on our own.

Favorite "WOW" moment

"There were so many"wow" moments. There were wow moments every day of the tour. I especially enjoyed the group dinners. It was very nice and relaxing to have someone else make all the plans and food choices (which were great) and I tasted things I might not have tasted if I'd been on my own. The cooking class was a lot of fun (and eating the food was fantastic). The wine tasting stop was also another fun experience."

Erin

Fresno, CA

Tour: 11/17/17

Overall rating: rating 5 of 5

We loved our Guide Lisa. She was Awesome! Venice was magical. I will be back!

Favorite "WOW" moment

"I loved Venice! I really enjoyed Burano and getting lost in Venice I loved the cooking class in Florence and the wine tasting on the way to Rome."

Paige

Fayetteville, GA

Tour: 11/17/17

Overall rating: rating 4 of 5

Favorite "WOW" moment

"The Colosseum in Rome and the Duomo in Florence."

Laurie

Kirkland, WA

Tour: 11/17/17

Overall rating: rating 4 of 5

The trip overall was wonderful. The Florence and Rome hotels were great! The Florence hotel was perfectly situated near everything. The tour guide was bery nice! Most of the meals wer good outside of the veal dish in Rome. The hotel ina venice was awful! The bed was rock hard and looked like a cot. I was extremely disappointed for the money I paid. The noise from the bars went in until 3-4 am, each night. Rick Steves staes they are experienced and this was a very poor choice.

Favorite "WOW" moment

"The David, the wine tour, and the pasta class. I greatly enjoyed getting to know those on the tour. Outside of Tina who was a sour grape and grumpy!"

Kelley

Kansas City, MO

Tour: 11/17/17

Overall rating: rating 5 of 5

I was a little iffy about joining a tour group. In most cases, I don't like doing things in groups and being constrained by someone else's schedule, but after our experience with Rick Steves Tours, I can't imagine touring without a group! I was a great balance of group activities and free time. In fact, we stayed for a couple of extra days and missed not having someone to explain the significance of sites or the ability to ask someone knowledgeable questions.

Favorite "WOW" moment

"There are too many to name so I'm going to name the most unexpected thing from the tour. I expected to see a lot of historic and iconic sites but I didn't expect to make friends with people on the tour and happily share these experiences with them."

Ronda

Seattle, WA

Tour: 11/17/17

Overall rating: rating 5 of 5

We had a great Italian experience! It was nice to have experts in the cities as well as the museums. We also enjoyed our own time to explore.

Favorite "WOW" moment

"All was beautiful!"

Christine

Saskatoon, SK

Tour: 11/06/17

Overall rating: rating 5 of 5

I had a fantastic experience overall. All the reasons I wanted to book the tour in the first place for my husband's and my honeymoon proved to be true in reality -- a friendly and helpful guide, the chance to make friends with other travelers, and a well-organized tour in terms of accommodations, meals, transportation, and easy entry to various big sights.

Favorite "WOW" moment

"I'm sure a lot of people say it's hard to choose one, but if I have to it's the trip to the Basilica of Saint Clemente. It had a lot to do with our guide, Francesca, because she put a lot of things about Rome into perspective using this sight as illustration. For example, the layers of the city and how it is Rome can be buried as it is and what the different types of wall construction meant. What I thought would be another visit to an old and ornate church was really a pivotal moment."

Scott

Saskatoon, SK

Tour: 11/06/17

Overall rating: rating 5 of 5

Overall, I enjoyed the tour. It was well organized, well led and had a great mix of guided expeditions as well as free time. The buses and rooms were comfortable, as expected, and the selection of food was terrific.

Favorite "WOW" moment

"The best moment, for me, was the Colosseum and Roman Forum. They are frequently characters or locations in the historical fiction I read, and have always held special allure for me. Sharing that with my new wife, Christine was an unforgettable memory."

Henry

Alhambra, CA

Tour: 11/06/17

Overall rating: rating 5 of 5

Our overall tour experience was outstanding. The information provided was a good planning tool for us. We like the flexibility of "own time" mixed with scheduled tour events. Our guide Sarah Corfield is wonderful, very attentive and experienced.

Favorite "WOW" moment

"We have not been to Venice, Florence and Rome, therefore, to us, the "WOW" moments all along our tour of the 3 cities."

Daniel

Granbury, TX

Tour: 11/06/17

Overall rating: rating 5 of 5

My wife Julie and I were so pleased with the tour! It was very well organized, paced at the right speed, and accurately described in the literature. We enjoyed having time to ourselves in the afternoon and evening as well as the group meals and extra surprises (e.g. the trip to the American military cemetery). The food and choice of hotels were exceptional and the people in our group were friendly, intelligent, kind, and thoughtful.

Favorite "WOW" moment

"My favorite moment was watching my wife's face as we viewed the Pieta, David, and so many beautiful masterpieces of our heritage."

Carla

Mahwah, NJ

Tour: 11/06/17

Overall rating: rating 5 of 5

The tour was great. The overall pace was good. Our guide, Sarah Corfield, was excellent. I learned so much about Italy and met great people on the tour.

Favorite "WOW" moment

"There were many. In fact I have a "top ten" list. Among the highlights: classical concert of Interpreti Veneziani in San Vidal Church in Venice; day trip to Burano and Torcello; American cemetery near Florence; visit to Santo Spirito church and local market in Florence; seeing Michelangelo's sculptures in Florence and Rome; visit to San Clemente Basilica in Rome and other Roman ruins with our local guide."

Samuel

Cleveland, TN

Tour: 11/06/17

Overall rating: rating 5 of 5

We had a great time and enjoyed all the activities and free time. Sarah did an outstanding job and we particularly liked her choice of extras. The stop at the Florence American Cemetery and Memorial was really special.

Favorite "WOW" moment

"We had many "wow" moments."

Michael

East Fairfield, VT

Tour: 11/06/17

Overall rating: rating 4 of 5

Sarah, our guide was superb: kind, knowledgeable, and organized. Two areas kept my rating from being outstanding. First, the Italian guides, though expert in their field, utilized the time allotted to lecture. This may be an effective, accepted approach in European education, but as an American educator, it felt like being bombarded with information. I prefer a socratic approach. Ask questions, get input, encourage thinking. Second issue was the poor quality of the sound systems.

Favorite "WOW" moment

"So many great works of art!"

James

Medford, OR

Tour: 11/03/17

Overall rating: rating 5 of 5

Fantastic!

Favorite "WOW" moment

"The wine-tasting event at Orvieto."

Sharon

Albuquerque, NM

Tour: 11/03/17

Overall rating: rating 4 of 5

I participated in the 2016 Best of Rome and now the 2017 Best of Italy, both in November. The 2016 tour was "better" because the group was smaller and more manageable. We had 28 participants this year and it was just too big.

Favorite "WOW" moment

"My first sight of the Florence Cathedral, walking down the street to the plaza, unbelievable!"

Robin

Nevada City, CA

Tour: 11/03/17

Overall rating: rating 4 of 5

I am glad I took the Rick Steve's Tour for Italy, as we were pretty much virgin European travelers. Roy was excellent at teaching us things we needed to know to get around, and the advice in the RS guide book re things like using the ATM and how to use a money belt were excellent, not to mention all the planning and arrangements made for which sights to see. We could not have made a trip like that without doing it with a tour group and guide, and RS was a good choice.

Favorite "WOW" moment

"I loved the cooking lesson in Florence (though I was not expecting I would), and I also loved the wine tasting stop. I enjoyed the group dinners as well. I guess all that is to say that I especially enjoyed the time that the group was together and able to talk with each other. On our own, I most enjoyed climbing the bell tower next to the Duomo and seeing the awesome views of Florence just about an hour before sunset, when the light was making everything glow in a golden color."

Kerry

Nevada City, CA

Tour: 11/03/17

Overall rating: rating 3 of 5

There is much about travelling I don't like: airplanes, hotels, being lost. Nothing Rick Steve's can do about that. If you really want to brave an international travel experience, Rick Steve's Italy tour is a good choice. The history, art and architecture you get to experience are excellent. Best part about the Rick Steve's tour was our tour guide, Roy.

Favorite "WOW" moment

"Michelangelo's David statue."

Carol

Culpeper, VA

Tour: 11/03/17

Overall rating: rating 4 of 5

One of the best trips I've ever been on. Loved the mixture of group time and individual time. I saw so much and learned so much more.

Favorite "WOW" moment

"Id have to say finding myself sitting on a Roman couch under San Clememte. To see the layers of history was incredible. The cooking class and the wine tasting are a close second."

William

Auburn, WA

Tour: 10/30/17

Overall rating: rating 5 of 5

exceeded my my expectations. I really liked our tour guide and local guides. They all heightened the experience. we covered a lot of ground and it all went smoothly with no problems.

Favorite "WOW" moment

"St Peters Basilica was the wow moment. Incredible experience in person."

Gina

Kansas City, MO

Tour: 10/30/17

Overall rating: rating 5 of 5

Having a knowledgeable guide and tour reservations in these world-class cities is vital and that's what you get with a Rick Steves tour in general and Cecilia in particular. This was my second RS tour and won't be my last, I hope. In my opinion, there was a perfect balance between guided activities and free time, which is great since my interests seem to be different from many of those on the tours. I enjoy the exploring the archaeology of a region, which is not a strong focus for these tours.

Favorite "WOW" moment

"My favorite photograph from the tour was taken on some free time from the Capitoline Museum overlooking ancient Rome. A rainbow broke through the clouds and seemed to be ending or emitting from the Colosseum."

Danci

Roseland, NJ

Tour: 10/30/17

Overall rating: rating 5 of 5

This is my third Rick Steve tour so I was familiar with the basic structure: lots of walking, lots of encouragement to use public transportation, lots of suggestions as to what to do with "down time." And as usual, the tour guide injected her personality into every aspect of the trip: guiding all ~30 of us with a mix of drill sergeant and mother hen, taking us to her family's vineyard (incredible treat!) and connecting us with excellent "local guides."

Favorite "WOW" moment

"Francesca, the local guide in Rome at the San Clemente church in old Rome, did an amazing job bringing personal experience, love and reverence to the "layers of old Rome.""

Amy

Melbourne, FL

Tour: 10/30/17

Overall rating: rating 5 of 5

I accompanied my mom on her first trip to Europe. This trip was perfect for her. Everything we so well planned and easy to follow. It really took all the stress out of travel. We got to see the highlights of what she wanted to and then had plenty of time to explore on our own. Our guides were outstanding and the extra experiences like wine tasting and a cooking class really put this trip over the top!

Favorite "WOW" moment

"Venice was a magical city. I had visited it before many years ago and had a very negative view of it, but this time it was spectacular. The guides were so wonderful and informative they lead us through this confusing city and really helped us to enjoy all of it!"

Anita

Novato, CA

Tour: 10/30/17

Overall rating: rating 5 of 5

Itinerary well rounded, guides superb.

Favorite "WOW" moment

"Wine tasting and tour at Le Velette."

Luann

Phoenix, AZ

Tour: 10/30/17

Overall rating: rating 3 of 5

I have no doubt that I saw and experienced things that I could not have done without being a member of your tour. Two of the things that come to mind are a private viewing at the Academia of the David and a day spent at our guide's winery in Orvieto. And every restaurant was a meal to remember. All of these things are memories that I will cherish. This was my first tour. I don't think I would do it again but I'm sure nobody does it better than RS!

Favorite "WOW" moment

"Turning the corner at the Academia and seeing David"

Lisa

Auburn, WA

Tour: 10/30/17

Overall rating: rating 5 of 5

This was truly a wonderful experience! Everything was so well thought out, from the itinerary, accommodations, sights visited and the quality of the guides. Cecilia was exceptional. She guided us with an easy confidence and obvious expertise, keeping us on track without being overbearing. The same was true of the local guides. I felt we were shown and encouraged to understand and embrace the best of the best the three cities had to offer.

Favorite "WOW" moment

"I have two wow moments. First was when Cecilia took us to her family winery. It was refreshing to get a glimpse of her lifestyle in Italy and access to something unique and away from the usual throng of tourists. Definitely an intimate, special experience! The second wow was our tour of ancient Rome with Francesca. She has a passion for Rome's history that she communicated to us in a beautiful, almost lyrical, fashion. She is a gem on your team!"

Marilynn

Lafayette, IN

Tour: 10/30/17

Overall rating: rating 5 of 5

Excellent experience and we will highly recommend a Rick Steve's tour to anyone who will listen. We especially like that in addition to the organized portions of the tour, we had free time to explore on our own.

Favorite "WOW" moment

"We both felt like the LeVelette Winery tour conducted by family member and our tour guide, Cecilia was a most surprisingly pleasant and informative tour. To realize that this was a part of her personal history made that extra special. And the wine was delicious! We also really enjoyed the experience of a cooking class in Florence - it was a lot of fun, educational and delicious! The chef our group worked with was very entertaining."

Bruce

The Villages, FL

Tour: 10/27/17

Overall rating: rating 5 of 5

I was blown away by how well organized and thorough the tour plan and itinerary was to begin with. And then the execution and personality of the actual tour rose to meet the plan. Congratulations Rick and staff, you are the real deal.

Favorite "WOW" moment

"My "Wow" moment was when I realized just how competent and resourceful our tour guide, Patricia, was. She is a real pro and people person. Nothing much rattles her... and the local guides she assembled were relaxed and fun and knowledgeable. We've been on other tours and you sometimes feel like you're being hustled. Not with Patsy."

Jeffrey

Mars, PA

Tour: 10/27/17

Overall rating: rating 5 of 5

Loved the combination of guided events and free time. Our guide was awesome and made things very easy with the "little things" that made the logistics of the trip so much easier. She did way more than I expected. We enjoyed meeting the other tour members and having time to ourselves. The local guides were awesome especially at Ancient Rome.

Favorite "WOW" moment

"The Vatican and Ancient Rome were the most profound moments for me. Our local guide really put the trip into perspective and I will never think of my "place in the universe" as I did before the trip. It's hard to put into words. I have always wanted to see St. Peter's and it did not disappoint."

Sandra

The Villages, FL

Tour: 10/27/17

Overall rating: rating 5 of 5

Wow to the tour guide and her staff! Liked the Inns for quaintness and helpfulness. Would recommend tour to anyone(two pair of sneakers as one will wear out). Will watch to check out your tours for later trips. Great.

William

Martin, GA

Tour: 10/27/17

Overall rating: rating 4 of 5

We had a beautiful time in Italy. The tour was well organized and performed with efficiency and excellence. I now have enough culture to last a life time. The other travelers were easy to meet and befriend. Well done!

Favorite "WOW" moment

"All events and locations brought their own moments of awe. No one moment stood out as totally unforgettable. However, the cooking class was a great change of pace mixed in the cultural parade."

Robert

Springfield, OH

Tour: 10/27/17

Overall rating: rating 5 of 5

The tour was very well structured and had an excellent balance of scheduled time and free time. Patricia was also excellent at leading the tour, and I also appreciated the way she familiarized us with the various cities and especially transportation. She also added small touches throughout the time which felt personal and gracious. This was our first time abroad, and the entire time was seamless for us. The tour in Rome that began with San Clemente seemed perfect as we were oriented in time..

Favorite "WOW" moment

"I like to jog early in the morning, and on this tour, I saw many things before the cities awoke that most did not. In Venice, I ran from the hotel to St. Mark's and then along the shore, just as the sun was coming up. The views were stunning and to see the gondolas lined up against the sunrise was great. When I turned around, there was a full mist rainbow over the city. Just one moment in hundreds really. I will add that the tour of San Clemente in Rome was surprising and amazing."

Tim

Portage, MI

Tour: 10/27/17

Overall rating: rating 5 of 5

The tour exceeded my expectations particularly in the areas that were above and beyond what was expected. Patti made sure that any travel need that anyone had was taken care of - special diet issues, taking people to pharmacy, helping then arrange their own excursions.

Favorite "WOW" moment

"two wow moments - the wine tasting with a buffet and the cooking class."

Kurt

Wausau, WI

Tour: 10/27/17

Overall rating: rating 5 of 5

The guides were fantastic. The main guide particularly so. Truely no issue was too big or small for her to give it her utmost attention. Great Sencecof humor. The local guides were very knowledgeable is their areas of expertise and made an effort to explain at a level compatibily with our diverse tour members. The cooking lesson session was a great bonding experience!

Favorite "WOW" moment

"There were so many , but standing on the water taxi with two new friends departing Venice on the Grand Canal particularly stands out, much better way to depart than jamming the whole tour group in a larger vessel."

Melissa

Portage, MI

Tour: 10/27/17

Overall rating: rating 5 of 5

We had amazing experiences that will last a lifetime. Our guide Patricia made even little things such as getting us pasteries, gelato, coffee, tickets in Rome to ride metro, memorable!

Favorite "WOW" moment

"I had at least three wow moments, going for a gondola ride with musicians, the Italian cooking lesson in Florence, and having Francesca guide us in St. Clement's in Rome!"

Kimberly

Mukilteo, WA

Tour: 10/27/17

Overall rating: rating 5 of 5

Our introduction to Rome, Florence, and Venice with Rick Steves guides far exceeded the experience we would have had on our own. They lead us through the side streets, around the crowds, while teaching us about Italy and Italians, both past and present. When we thought we couldn't walk another step or take in any more culture Patricia gave us a treat, made us laugh, then marched us on to the next great adventure. Our group became a family on a vacation we will remember forever.

Favorite "WOW" moment

"You see the videos and pictures of all that Venice, Florence, and Rome have to experience but there is NOTHING like standing on the Rialto bridge and watching the gondola's float by...or looking out over Florence from the top of the Dome...or standing in the middle of the Forum. For me, the WOW was being there!!!"

Sara

Springfield, OH

Tour: 10/27/17

Overall rating: rating 5 of 5

This was our first RS tour. We thoroughly enjoyed ourselves. We felt there was a perfect blend of organized structure with "down" time. The hands on experiences were especially enjoyable: ie: wine tasting in Tuscany, pasta making, gondola ride with serenade. This was the best trip of our lives.

Favorite "WOW" moment

"Seeing things that I had seen all of my life for the first time in person and taking in the impact that they have had to the history of our world."

Mary

Maryland Heights, MO

Tour: 10/27/17

Overall rating: rating 5 of 5

Well organized. I felt at ease from day one. I was traveling alone for the first time and Patricia made the trip memorable. She is smart, resourceful, caring and fun. She catered to each of us as to our needs. She knew Italy! She is great with the locals and guides. Traveling with her was like being with a friend along the journey!

Favorite "WOW" moment

"My favorite was St. Clemente in Rome. So reverently simple."

Robert

Jacksonville, FL

Tour: 10/27/17

Overall rating: rating 5 of 5

Favorite "WOW" moment

"The cooking school was fun something I never would have thought to attend on my own"

Lucia

Arlington Heights, IL

Tour: 10/27/17

Overall rating: rating 5 of 5

The trip was amazing! I saw in a short time of period a lots of historic places, churches, cities, country sites. What impressed me the most was how the trip was very well balanced and mixed between busyness, quiet-place, cities, country site, cooking classes , winery trip with a beautiful sites and place to see, time with the group, time by yourself. Also rides with the boat in a quiet and historic site, seeing the country as we took the bus between cities was beautiful.Varieties was beauty!

Favorite "WOW" moment

"Venice it was my"wow" moment.The most beautiful, romantic, magic city I ever see! It was an emotional moment when I arrived at the Piazzale Roma and walked to the train station where I was 34 years ago, coming from a communist country and going to America with my husband and my one year son. On the way to America we stoped at the train station for a day and not being able to visit the city.My dream was to go back and visit Venice.And I did and it was amazing!"

Beverly

Anchorage, AK

Tour: 10/23/17

Overall rating: rating 4 of 5

Even though we signed up for a vigorous tour, we successfully saw all the major highlights of Italy. It was truly stunning and we hope to go back.

Favorite "WOW" moment

"David by Michael Angelo was my wow moment. We saw so much art work that day, but when we walked into the room where David was exhibited, I felt that everything could not compare with David."

Stephen

Coronado, CA

Tour: 10/23/17

Overall rating: rating 5 of 5

Our overall experience on this tour was excellent. It was very well organized and planned. We will definitely be doing another Rick Steve's tour in the future.

Favorite "WOW" moment

"My favorite wow moment was walking into the Colosseum through the "stern entrance" which is the same entrance through which the gladiators entered."

Judy

Fitchburg, MA

Tour: 10/23/17

Overall rating: rating 5 of 5

I could not have imagined a more exciting, thorough, comprehensive tour package.

Favorite "WOW" moment

"Is is a tough question! I would have to say entering the Colosseum through the Stern Gate....goosebumps!"

Linda

Halfway, OR

Tour: 10/23/17

Overall rating: rating 5 of 5

I had an excellent experience on the tour. I was stimulated constantly by new information, new sights, new foods, new art, new ways of thinking. It was very enjoyable to experience a different culture in such a complete way. I also enjoyed the free time which allowed us to explore different cities by foot and metro. We could return to an already explored area, or could discover different areas on our own. Not worrying about the hotel rooms or transportation connections was a plus.

Favorite "WOW" moment

"I really enjoyed our last day on the tour, with Francesca. She took us to the San Clemente Church and the older layers underneath it, then to the Coliseum, where she very knowledgeably discussed what is known about what happened there, relating it back to the church we had seen earlier and to what was going on at the time. Then we walked through the Forum where she discussed what happened there and tied it all together. It made it very vivid and alive."

Gerald

Fraser, MI

Tour: 10/23/17

Overall rating: rating 5 of 5

The tour is a good mix of people, experiences, background information, cultural immersion, food, and fun. My co-travelers were a good good group of people, we saw and experienced some really interesting things, and had an experience that wouldn't be possible if I had traveled on my own.

Favorite "WOW" moment

"I think it was the consensus by most that Venice was our favorite for overall sense of place."

Chris

Anchorage, AK

Tour: 10/23/17

Overall rating: rating 5 of 5

This was our second Rick Steves tour and we enjoyed it very much. We felt we got value and saw the highlights of cities we visited. We gained confidence to return to these cities on our own in the future.

Favorite "WOW" moment

"Really enjoyed the tour guide for the third day in Rome (Chuch, Coliseum, and Roman Forum). She was simply outstanding."

Ann

Burlingame, CA

Tour: 10/20/17

Overall rating: rating 5 of 5

I loved the history, art and local tour guides who were experts in Art History and Archaeology. Hotel accommodations could have been nicer. Food could have been better. But overall, the historical knowledge and expertise of each area outweighed the other elements that were not as superb.

Favorite "WOW" moment

"FLORENCE. Our local tour guide, Angelo. Our local artisan workshop with Catarina in Florence was amazing!!! Our cooking class with Fabrizio was so fun and delicious. Keep continuing the local experience."

Agatha

Tampa, FL

Tour: 10/20/17

Overall rating: rating 5 of 5

This was my fourth Rick Steves' Tour, and my husband's first. I recommended it and hoped my husband would agree that it is a great value for the historical and cultural lessons provided. Your premier guide and local guides exceeded my expectations! The transportation - bus - was seamless, and we received plenty of bus/metro tickets for getting back to hotels, etc.

Favorite "WOW" moment

"The winery lunch stop between Florence and Rome. The wine was good and food, but I was most impressed with the location and learning about wine pairing. The presentation of the host was so informative. She was also spunky and entertaining! The scenery was breathtaking, and we may have to return for a stay on the property!!"

Marikae

Camano Island, WA

Tour: 10/20/17

Overall rating: rating 5 of 5

We thoroughly enjoyed the people, sights, sounds, and tastes of Italy. Marijan, though not Italian, seemed delighted to be showing us around and having us experience this remarkable part of the world. The tour made traveling easy and stress-free, and Marijan guided, answered questions and made recommendations when we were on our own. We appreciated all the pre-planning tips that made it easy to prepare and pack. We'll recommend RS tours to others and hopefully go again ourselves!

Favorite "WOW" moment

"1.Tour: Wine tasting in Umbria. Made me want to return to Italy to Tuscany for the small town tour. Our hostess was gracious, informative and hospitable. Food and wine were delicious, grounds and view amazing. 2. On our own: lunch in Burano at a Trattoria where we were treated like royalty by the family and given an outstanding meal with extras. When our tour group went to Burano, we ate there again and they not only remembered us, but made sure we met the whole family! Italian hospitality."

Dennis

Camano Island, WA

Tour: 10/20/17

Overall rating: rating 5 of 5

It was very good, a great introduction to Italy, Europe and international travel. The biggest negative was nothing you can do anything about - air travel. The tour was even better than we had hoped for, the guide was outstanding, the hotels were fine, the pace was doable if tiring, and the agenda of things to do and see was well thought out, very interesting and enjoyable.

Favorite "WOW" moment

"It had to do with the overall food culture in Italy - every case of eating and drinking was elevated above what we were used to, which is the Seattle area and the Western US. Their was a great deal of care and pride in providing food, drink and a service experience that was great - and in many cases, exceptional. Specific occasions at the Trattori de Primo in Burano, the cooking class in Florence, the Le Vette winery in Umbria, and the Lancelot Hotel in Rome provided wonderful experiences."

Pamela

Melba, ID

Tour: 10/20/17

Overall rating: rating 5 of 5

All the highlights of each city were covered, with knowledgeable guides. The "extras" were fantastic! Marijan was so good at organizing everything, being extremely helpful when anyone asked for help.

Favorite "WOW" moment

"There were several great activities. The art demonstration was such fun and so interesting. The cooking class likewise was fun and we got to eat our lunch in a quaint wine cellar. The wine tasting as well was informative and the location was beautiful."

Patricia

Vancouver, BC

Tour: 10/20/17

Overall rating: rating 4 of 5

I cannot say enough about Marijan He is the consummate guide Nothing ruffles him He is always generous and warm to members He is a leader that leads with charm. His knowledge of the area and the history were wonderful He genuinely likes people and it showed every day If you could extend this tour by 2 days and include one agritourismo stay between Florence and Rome, this tour would be perfection. The guides throughout were outstanding. Their knowledge is unparalleled. Wonderful

Favorite "WOW" moment

"Our pasta making class was so fun! The chefs were so good The food delicious and the setting for the meal was such a surprise!"

Necia

Alpharetta, GA

Tour: 10/20/17

Overall rating: rating 5 of 5

Favorite "WOW" moment

"Walking into St. Peters and the Sistine Chapel"

Jaymie

Kennett Square, PA

Tour: 10/20/17

Overall rating: rating 5 of 5

This was our first trip overseas and our first tour. I was very pleased with how smoothly the tour went and how well-thought out our journey was, with a great mix of experiences. It was educational and inspiring. I am glad we were able to cover so much ground and see the highlights of 3 cities. I was not prepared for how exhausting it would be! I am physically in great shape, so the walking was fine, but there is also a lot of mental exhaustion from being over-stimulated. But I have no regrets!

Favorite "WOW" moment

"Very hard to choose one. Here are some wows... Our charming, intelligent guide spoke 7 languages and was an excellent leader. Fish Ravioli with Roasted Vegetables at Trattoria Alla Scala in Venice. Visiting the island of Torcello. Our room in Hotel Loggiato dei Serviti in Florence with a beautiful canopy bed and 2 windows. Meeting artist Caterina Baletti. Seeing "David" for the first time. Wine experience at Le Velette in Orvieto. Vatican Museum and Sistene Chapel."

Steve

Kennett Square, PA

Tour: 10/20/17

Overall rating: rating 5 of 5

Wonderful blend of group tour and individual time.

Favorite "WOW" moment

"There was not one moment but the collective trip was outstanding."

Andrew

Seattle, WA

Tour: 10/16/17

Overall rating: rating 5 of 5

We started the tour with high expectations-- and the tour exceeded those expectations.

Favorite "WOW" moment

"The museums were amazing--the art was overwhelming but it was almost those random moments that provided surprise WOW moments....walking back to the hotel after dinner in Florence and hearing 3 street musicians play Vivaldi, the evening at St Marks in Venice dancing to the music and enjoying the evening energy. Burrano! So many WOW moments."

Bruce

Pleasanton, CA

Tour: 10/16/17

Overall rating: rating 5 of 5

We had the most wonderful time on the Best of Venice, Florence & Rome tour. The experience exceeded our expectations. Just about every detail of the tour is first-rate & well organized. Our guide, Rainer is the best! Everyone in our tour was friendly and I enjoyed our time together. Before the tour, I had little interest in art. I now have a greater appreciation & awareness because of what was learned & experienced during the tour.

Favorite "WOW" moment

"My top 'wow' moments are arriving by boat and seeing picturesque Venice for the first time, viewing the magnificent David, and the impressive Sistine Chapel Ceiling."

Andrea

Falls Church, VA

Tour: 10/16/17

Overall rating: rating 5 of 5

I usually enjoy planning and executing travel myself. However, this year, we took a chance on a tour, and I'm so glad we did. Our tour was exactly what I was hoping for. There were plenty of "must see" destinations with line skipping, easy transfers, and very happily, numerous specialized guides who really shared interesting approaches to experiencing the art and architecture of Italy. The amount of free time added a great bonus. We had a lovely time.

Favorite "WOW" moment

"There were so many "wow" moments...Venice shrouded in fog, viewing David's face from the side and trying to picture what moment is stunningly depicted, and Francesca's tour."

Gay

Westerville, OH

Tour: 10/16/17

Overall rating: rating 5 of 5

Worth every penny. Our Rick Steves tour guide Rainer was unbelievably great. His knowledge of Rome and the magnificent Architecture was outstanding. We felt extremely care for and safe throughout each day. The unexpected moments were the individual local guides and their expertise in the museums/Vatican and Churches and roman ruins. The ease of having a guide to skip the long lines.

Favorite "WOW" moment

"St. Clemente Church ! The ruins below ground and walking to see the Coliseum so close. That local guide was the best. She made us tear up several times. Her calm voice and her descriptions of pass civilizations was outstanding."

Cathy

Mobile, AL

Tour: 10/16/17

Overall rating: rating 5 of 5

This tour was very well organized. We chose Rick Steves' because of a good mix of group touring and free time. We found this to be true. I appreciate that suggestions were given of sights to visit during our free time. Out time was packed with places to visit and I appreciate that our time wasn't wasted and group time was full of activities. The local guides were an excellent bonus. Not having a background in art history I greatly appreciate this expertise that led to a better enjoyment of art.

Favorite "WOW" moment

"St. Peter's Basilica was an experience for my mind and spirit."

Pamela

Mount Pleasant, SC

Tour: 10/16/17

Overall rating: rating 5 of 5

It was fantastic! I loved everywhere we went, our main tour guide, Rhyner was great and the private tour guides in each city were knowlegable and fun.

Favorite "WOW" moment

"Entering Florence - it was beautiful! I was not sure what to expect, but loved it."

Janna

Austin, TX

Tour: 10/13/17

Overall rating: rating 5 of 5

Overall this was amazing. It was my first time and by the end of the first meeting I was relieved with how prepared and organized every day was and how well we were instructed by Julian on where to be, what to expect..etc. Julian is an amazing story teller as as each of our local guides; they really helped weave everything together.

Favorite "WOW" moment

"There's not just 1!! I had my breath taken away and wow'ed with St Mark's, Uffizi palace, the statue of David, the Birth of Venus, the Sistine Chapel. Add to that that we were usually the earliest group and had the least amount of wait at any location we were touring."

Michael

Renton, WA

Tour: 10/13/17

Overall rating: rating 5 of 5

My wife initially loved the idea of going on a tour and I was skeptical. I've seen my friend's videos and pictures of being rushed and hurried like a conveyor belt through cities and attractions so that you could see 200 million things in two weeks. I don't enjoy that type of experience whatsoever, but I'm blown away by this tour. We had a lot of free time to explore wherever we wanted to go and that made this trip definitely one to remember and our guide, Julian, was superb. Thank you!

Favorite "WOW" moment

"Too many to count, and will take time in going through our pictures and seeing what sticks out the most. One of the "wow" moments for me was seeing the original David in Florence. I've seen quite a few copies over the years but seeing the original was great. Another "wow" or "wth" moment was traffic in Rome. It just hinted at a suggestion of rules or guidelines, but I felt at home walking like this quickly."

Dennis

Wimberley, TX

Tour: 10/13/17

Overall rating: rating 5 of 5

The VFR10 tour hit the highlights of art and culture in the cities visited, while leaving time for un-guided side trips. I highly recommend this tour for people wanting to see the Italian Renaissance cities.

Favorite "WOW" moment

"My favorite "WOW" moment was seeing the ruins of ancient Rome. Our city guide painted a vibrant word-picture of what this seat of empire looked like 2,000 years ago."

Marla

Upland, CA

Tour: 10/09/17

Overall rating: rating 3 of 5

This was our 2nd RS Tour. a large group(28).Our local guides at every phase were fabulous and almost made up for some of the failings with our tour leader.A lot to pack-in & we walked about 8-10 miles a day.(some self-inflicted) Hotels were centrally located. We thought that the timing of our tour would have meant fewer crowds- week 42 is when schools are out & travelling.add that to guide book

Favorite "WOW" moment

"Our guide in Rome, Francesca, was the highlight of our Rome portion of the tour. She moved me to tears with her description of the tombstone epitaph written by a husband about his wife and her stories to bring the ruins & history to life. Her knowledge of the layering of history as we walked though the ages brought the culture with vivid imagery and knew of our other experiences to add to the overall past tour experiences."

Donna

Plymouth, MA

Tour: 10/09/17

Overall rating: rating 5 of 5

This was our first Rick Steves' tour and it won't be our last!

Favorite "WOW" moment

"Our visit with Francesca at the Colesseum."

Robert

Safety Harbor, FL

Tour: 10/09/17

Overall rating: rating 5 of 5

This was a trip we had been looking forward to taking since a Mediterranean cruise in 2012 where we got to spend 4-6 hours in each of these cities. Not enough! Being able to spend three nights in each place and experiencing them after the crowds had gone back to their cruise ships gave us a sense of really getting to know the true character of each city.The food was great, Jesse was great, accommodations were great, and we had the best group so far (our 3rd RS tour) to share it all with.

Favorite "WOW" moment

"There were several. The cooking class was amazing. So much fun and we learned a lot. Bought the pasta maker attachments for our Kitchenaide when we got home. Santa Croce was a wow for me. Being a retired science teacher and seeing the tomb of Galileo was incredible. So many important people in our history buried there. The stop at the Winery was also a favorite. In fact, we took a vote, Rick, and decided you should add one more night to the tour so we could stay over."

Anne

Lexington, KY

Tour: 10/09/17

Overall rating: rating 3 of 5

We had a good time however, we thought the schedule was too heavy in the mornings with too much free time the remainder of the day and evening.

Favorite "WOW" moment

"The boar trip in Venice was very nice. The company of the other travelers enhanced our trip."

Donald

Winston Salem, NC

Tour: 10/09/17

Overall rating: rating 5 of 5

from donald and judy hill: the best trip of our life. We so appreciate Jesse. What a great person and guide. We greatly appreciate his information within the context of history. Sometimes we take for granted traveling 5,000 miles in a plane in 10 hours. Venice----outstanding walks and instruction. St. Marco's square---wow. Florence---our favorite: great leadership by Jesse. Cathedral of St. Mary of the flower, dome, and tower---awesome. Flash art was a blast. Rome---awesome

Favorite "WOW" moment

"Venice[INVALID]-Frari church in Venice; We were able to spend a lot of time and pray there. the Rick Steve's audible tour part is awesome. Recommend highly making our own lunch in Florence. So much fun. Tuscan lunch with Marco. Rome[INVALID][INVALID]the guide there was unbelievable. Coliseum and Forum. all the dinners with group were so much fun Watching my wife's eyes light up and laughing with other tour members. Her telling me how much she enjoyed the trip."

Ilona

Glenhaven, CA

Tour: 10/09/17

Overall rating: rating 5 of 5

Favorite "WOW" moment

"Seeing Michelangelo's wooden crucifix in Florence, which he carved at the age of 18. Very moving and an unexpected joy"

Daniel

Upland, CA

Tour: 10/09/17

Overall rating: rating 4 of 5

Other tour members were all great - friendly, cooperative and like minded - wanting to actively participate in all activities, either via the tour or on their own. Cities, hotels, meals (except for one in Florence) were wonderful. The differential that did not make this tour outstanding was the tour guide. Jesse was adequate, but appeared at times to be "phoning it in." Being that he had just finished the identical tour just before starting ours may have been part of the problem.

Favorite "WOW" moment

"St. Marks in Venice."

Radd

Overland Park, KS

Tour: 10/09/17

Overall rating: rating 4 of 5

Well run and organized. Group a little large at 24, 10 - 15 would be better. Great experience.

Favorite "WOW" moment

"David in Florence"

Stephen

Lexington, KY

Tour: 10/09/17

Overall rating: rating 3 of 5

Favorite "WOW" moment

"Enjoyed the time spent at Marco's farm very much as well as the gondola trip in Venice. Greatly enjoyed the company of the other travelers."

Debbie

Keller, TX

Tour: 10/09/17

Overall rating: rating 5 of 5

The Rick Steve's Experience is amazing. The Best of Venice, Florence and Rome Tour was the perfect amount of days that included many of my favorite things: art, architecture, culture, food, unique experiences and so much history. The tour group enhanced the trip - people from all walks of life, contributing their own world experiences. Our tour guide's knowledge of literature and history was impressive. The trip enhanced my perceptive of the world.

Favorite "WOW" moment

"Wow moments: seeing Botticelli's Birth of Venus in person, seeing Michelangelo's David and the Trevi Fountain."

Harris

Fitchburg, MA

Tour: 10/06/17

Overall rating: rating 5 of 5

Venice to Rome the tour and its guide (Stephanie) were outstanding. Her knowledge and her personality, the in and outs, the little tips all resulted in a fantastic experience. Hotels were centrally located and made for easy navigation of city streets. Your Guide was very helpful and was our Compass Rose

Favorite "WOW" moment

"The cooking class and our wine tour were fantastic. It was a change from the traditional historic site seeing. I think it brought the group closer together and developed a stronger bond. (well done)"

Patricia

Hockessin, DE

Tour: 10/06/17

Overall rating: rating 5 of 5

As a first trip abroad there can be no comparison. The pre trip information and suggestions were most helpful. Our guide,Stephanie made us feel very comfortable as a group very early on in the trip, and gave us great insight into the culture, language, and getting around. We became comfortable travelers in a very short time. By far the tour of Italy was remarkable and breathtaking. Only downfall was having to leave Rome after just three days. Already miss Stephanie and the whole group.

Favorite "WOW" moment

"Every place had a wow moment: Venice - the Doge's Palace at 930 pm with only 9 visitors, it was a private tour! Florence - the Duomo bells chiming, maybe the private group session at the artist studio, or possibly the cooking class! Rome - every sight was a wow, from the Vatican to the Forum to metro rides."

Howard

Wilmington, DE

Tour: 10/06/17

Overall rating: rating 5 of 5

It was a tremendous overall experience, learning about italy while working with our guide Stephanie and a great group of other people on the tour.

Favorite "WOW" moment

"The cooking class in Florence wSAs tops, with a bonding with fellow tour participants while making our own lunch. And to learn how easy pasta is to make form scratch."

Fred

Newark, DE

Tour: 10/06/17

Overall rating: rating 5 of 5

The tour was great. The RSG scheduled tours of all the "must see" sites in each city. Often, we got there at times when the crowds were small. We still had time to site see and enjoy the cities on our own.

Favorite "WOW" moment

"The Colosseum and the Ruins were awesome, so were the Florentine Steaks"

Tammie

Eagle, ID

Tour: 10/06/17

Overall rating: rating 5 of 5

The tour was well planned with a good mix of group touring and free time touring. The local guides we all very knowable and educated us on more that names and dates. The hotels locations were perfect and helped us to experience the local community and food.

Favorite "WOW" moment

"Everyday we had a WOW moment, Venice- canals, the Doge's Palace at night with almost no one there, Florence – out the window of our monastery hotel The Duomo, Rome- the Pantheon at dusk. Our bucket list WOW, for me the Sistine Chapel and my wife "The" David."

David

Hockessin, DE

Tour: 10/06/17

Overall rating: rating 5 of 5

Being our first visit aboard, we absolutely enjoyed the entire experience and look forward to our next adventure.

Favorite "WOW" moment

"We experienced a vast number of "wow" moments from our first dinner in Venice at Rosa Rosa with great friends, exploring the markets in Florence, an exceptional wine experience in the Tuscan region, and visualizing ancient Rome in the Forum."

Nancy

Fitchburg, MA

Tour: 10/06/17

Overall rating: rating 5 of 5

I truly was wowed by all that we were able to do, the knowledge of local and group guides, the location of the hotels , the fun that was part of it, the terrific group dynamics, and the fabulous weather.

Favorite "WOW" moment

"...this is really difficult to select, but I loved the cooking class and the trip to the winery at Orvieto."

Michael

Richland, WA

Tour: 10/06/17

Overall rating: rating 5 of 5

Stephanie was wonderful, she seemed to really care about the group. There was a good mix of planned touring and free time. I wish the group was smaller-28 is very cumbersome As a chef, I felt the restaurants chosen for group dinners were rather poor. The food served at these locations was mediocre.

Favorite "WOW" moment

"The first full view of the Duomo."

Kate

Troy, MI

Tour: 10/06/17

Overall rating: rating 5 of 5

It was truly a trip of a lifetime and I thoroughly enjoyed every minute! The tour was a great balance between group activities and free time. I found the art to be particularly inspiring, all brought to life by Stephanie and all of our excellent local guides (Elizabetta, Juliana, Paolo, and Francesca). The hotels were comfortable and in great locations. Stephanie was such an amazing guide, always making sure we were comfortable and confident navigating the cities. I had a wonderful time!

Favorite "WOW" moment

"Seeing Michelangelo's David is something that I'll never forget. The more I looked at it, the more amazed I was. It is beyond comprehension how someone could create something so powerful yet so subtle. Botticelli's Primavera and Birth of Venus at the Uffizi were "wows" of color and beauty after seeing rooms upon rooms of pre-Renaissance religious paintings (which are interesting in their own right, but these two paintings are truly marvelous to behold). If you love art, you must go on this tour!"

Colleen

Newark, DE

Tour: 10/06/17

Overall rating: rating 5 of 5

Had a great time. Tour guides were great!

Favorite "WOW" moment

"The view from the winery overlooking vineyards. So beautiful! Pictures did not come close."

Katherine

Conway, AR

Tour: 10/06/17

Overall rating: rating 5 of 5

The only word I have is Amazing. Just Amazing. I worried about nothing and felt like I was in Italy with family. Stephanie and her local guides are above notch.

Favorite "WOW" moment

"The cooking class. The local artist we meet those are my top two."

Gay

Slidell, LA

Tour: 10/03/17

Overall rating: rating 5 of 5

This tour was a great mixture of education, immersion and relaxation. We hit all the big "must see" spots, learned enough to really appreciate what we were seeing, and had enough time to rest or explore our "neighborhood" on our own. I loved that we were hoteled in the heart of these wonderful cities for a few days. Our guide was very helpful, informative, efficient, and fun!

Favorite "WOW" moment

"Too many to count! Really. I was continually awed and amazed."

Naomi

River Falls, WI

Tour: 10/03/17

Overall rating: rating 5 of 5

This was a "bucket list" tour for me and was all that I'd hoped it would be.

Favorite "WOW" moment

"There were so many wonderful sights, but the "wow" one for me was standing in the Sistine Chapel looking up at the magnificent work of Michelangelo."

Tom

Vancouver, WA

Tour: 10/03/17

Overall rating: rating 5 of 5

Wonderful! Although we've used Rick's guidance through his many books over the years, this was our first Rick Steves' guided tour. Venice, Florence and Rome are huge tourists centers, so it's a challenge to get through the crowds, see the sights and comprehend them. Especially appreciated the pacing - nice balance of must-see sights and on-your-own touring.

Favorite "WOW" moment

"Probably the cooking class. It was fun and a nice break. Chopping, slicing, dicing and rolling our own pasta was just the cure for the mega tourist museum scene."

Alan

New Britain, PA

Tour: 10/03/17

Overall rating: rating 5 of 5

I didn't like not being able to get WIFI outside the hotels, and even inside the hotels it was spotty. I did like walking extensively throughout the cities to see numerous museums and churches after the tours ended for the morning or later. The tour's fellow travelers were great and Amanda was wonderful. Each of the local tour guides were perfect. We learned a lot and felt it was a worthwhile trip, with a lot of fun activities.

Favorite "WOW" moment

"1. the Big Sites, like the Vatican and the Colluseum; 2. the fact that we as a group were ushered into the front of lines that otherwise were three hours long for these places; 3. the other amazing buildings, churches, and museums that were NOT on the main tourists travels, like San Giovanni in Laterano in Rome, which we spent 90 minutes in, because we had time to ourselves; 4. the offbeat places, like the botanical gardens; 5. enjoying the legends, art, mosaics, and sculpures of Italy."

Gary

Gold River, CA

Tour: 10/03/17

Overall rating: rating 4 of 5

very happy with the tour and with our tour guide amanda i was glad that it was an energetic tour with a lot of walking. thats what i like. i liked staying in the "hearts" of the cities we toured

Frances

Doylestown, PA

Tour: 10/03/17

Overall rating: rating 5 of 5

Amanda was excellent - like a mother hen caring for her middle and older aged travellers. She was extremely knowledgable about Italian history and in the rare instance she did not have an answer for a question, she found the correct answer immediately. The two "activities" we had were so much fun - the winetasting ou Orvieto and the the cookinng class in Florence. Our local guides made the history and art come alive. There was just enough free time for our own explorations to visit more museums

Favorite "WOW" moment

"Many Wow moments but the two I loved the most were walking up Giotto's campanile and viewing David in the Accademia both in Florence"

Joe

Slidell, LA

Tour: 10/03/17

Overall rating: rating 5 of 5

Our experience was that the tour was run very professionally and in a very organized manner. With clearly a virtually unlimited amount of things to do and see, I felt like we saw what we needed to with the time we had. I could've never designed a trip to accomplish this on my own. Amanda, our guide, was truly a pleasure. She was extremely considerate and took care of us better than I could've ever expected. The local guides that medt us along the way were also extremely good at what they do

Favorite "WOW" moment

"That's a tough one. When it comes to food, clearly the food class was the biggest for me. When it to comes to museums I would have to say St. Peter's Basilica. Romanticism, I would say the gondola ride. And then there is spirituality, Michael Angelo's sculptures - Wow."

Beth

Greensboro, NC

Tour: 10/03/17

Overall rating: rating 5 of 5

The tour was more than I could have imagined! This was my first trip to Italy and I am so glad I went on a Rick Steves Tour. There was no way in the world that we could have experienced and learned so much history going by ourselves. The tour was a great mix of group togetherness and off on your own time. I really liked that aspect. I loved the restaurants we went to both on group time and recommendations from our fabulous guide Amanda, on our own time.

Favorite "WOW" moment

"That is a hard one--I think when I was most wowed was at the Vatican Museum--so much art, it was almost overwhelming"

Carol

Franklin Park, IL

Tour: 10/03/17

Overall rating: rating 5 of 5

The tour was much more than I ever expected! The restaurants & hotel accommodations were first class, and the little perks from Amanda gave it that personal touch. We enjoyed the time we had on our own to explore.

Favorite "WOW" moment

"The Roman Forum and Colliseum were absolutely incredible! I also loved the singing gondola ride, but to understand how Venice works as a city was amazing!"

Robyn

Lynnwood, WA

Tour: 10/02/17

Overall rating: rating 5 of 5

It surpassed all my expectations. Julian was a wonderful tour guide. He made sure we were informed on everything we needed to know. He was very informative and knowledgeable on all the things we saw. I knew if I needed anything he was there for us. He truly made our trip perfect. I

Favorite "WOW" moment

"I would say Venice. Everyone should go there."

Gene

Lenexa, KS

Tour: 10/02/17

Overall rating: rating 5 of 5

A true learning experience was had. Expectations were met and on occasion exceeded. To see and experience places that were only read about in the past was very enlightening. A great visit!! I learned quite a bit about Venice, Florence and Rome that I have previously only read about or viewed on TV documentaries

Favorite "WOW" moment

"The tour of the Tenuta Le Velette winery was very nice. What a peaceful place to visit. Outstanding scenery, a 2,500 year history lesson by the current owner in 20 minutes and the tasting of good wine and associated food for a nice lunch. The tour of the Roman Coliseum and the Roman Ruins was unbelievable. The visit to St. Paul's Cathedral in person was great. Per suggestion in the guide book, a speed boat ride from the Venice airport to the hotel was fun and a great idea."

Dwight

Brentwood, TN

Tour: 10/02/17

Overall rating: rating 5 of 5

It was a wonderful tour. Learned a great deal about Italy and it's cities.

Favorite "WOW" moment

"Loved all of the meals provided by the tour. Wonderful restaurants and dining experience"

Cynthia

Iowa Falls, IA

Tour: 10/02/17

Overall rating: rating 5 of 5

What a wonderful trip! I've wanted to visit Italy for many years and this tour was not a disappointment. I appreciated the structure: an overview of the city, a morning tour through some of the three-star sites, free afternoon and evening time to personalize our visit, lots of suggestions for on-our-own time, and a chance to get to know the other travelers and regional food at the group meals. And an outstanding tour guide!

Favorite "WOW" moment

"I had many "wow" moments. Each time I saw in real life the pieces of art that I'd pondered over in books for many years, it was a "wow" moment. They all looked so much more beautiful in person than on paper. The gorgeous mosaics in St. Marks, the beautiful Donatello David, the Birthing of Venus, the Pieta, the doors of the Baptistery, Michelangelo's David, the Sistine Chapel were breathtaking. I loved seeing the Italian countryside as we moved from Venice to Florence and Florence to Rome."

Dolores

Saint Louis, MO

Tour: 10/02/17

Overall rating: rating 5 of 5

This was a high energy tour that was just fabulous. Venice, there are not enough words to explain the magic. The twisting streets, the bridges, the water, the architecture and of course the history. Florence, more history, the Duomo, the Baptristry, the art, the cooking lessons, what more could you want. Then, Rome. The center of it all, it is a walking city, full of history and romance, the Vatican, the fountains and more content than you could ever want. I loved it all! When can I go back!

Favorite "WOW" moment

"Approaching Venice on our speedboat. I couldn't believe I was finally there, and then suddenly to be entering the Grand Canal and to see the amazing beauty. I was mesmerized beyond words, you could not wipe the grin off my face. Loved it!"

Jim

Overland Park, KS

Tour: 10/02/17

Overall rating: rating 5 of 5

Since we have been home, people have asked us "how was your trip?" We can truly answer that it was fantastic! Being first time travelers to Italy and on a Rick Steves Tour, we have great memories of Venice, Florence and Rome. The hotels were pretty good especially the Hotel Silla in Florence. For the most part, our group members were very friendly and easy to get to know. Julian was a terrific guide with a wealth of knowledge throughout the entire trip! His stories on the bus were great!

Favorite "WOW" moment

"I had several "wow" moments during the trip. Having a live experience at the Vatican was all I hoped it would be! Also, I really wanted to exper- ience Trajan's Tower in Ancient Rome along with the adjoining market. Seeing it at night and also during the day was fantastic!"

Mary

Slidell, LA

Tour: 10/02/17

Overall rating: rating 5 of 5

My husband and I had a great time on our trip. It was everything we could have dreamed of. Our group was fun and our guide was very prepared and knowledgeable. Everything went flawlessly

Favorite "WOW" moment

"The whole thing! It was so full it is hard to pick out one thing. I loved the history, the art,"

Linda

Overland Park, KS

Tour: 10/02/17

Overall rating: rating 5 of 5

Italy was everything and more than expected! This is in thanks to our wonderful tour guide who was soo knowledgeable bringing history to life. The artwork was fabulous and I still can't get over that all the ceilings are painted/sculpted works of art. Hotels were in the heart of the cities, food delicious and good combination of planned events and free time.

Favorite "WOW" moment

"In Venice the canals, in Florence Pitti Palace and the artwork, in Rome of course the Vatican especially St Peter's Basillica and Sistene Chapel."

Michael

Slidell, LA

Tour: 10/02/17

Overall rating: rating 5 of 5

We had a great guide (Julian) and a great group of fellow travelers (including my main squeeze). As a first-time tourist to Europe, I didn't know what to expect. However, our tour surpassed everything I hoped it would be.

Favorite "WOW" moment

"I wasn't sure about it beforehand, but my favorite experience during our tour was the cooking class in Florence. We had a lot of fun with our little group and prepared (and enjoyed) a fantastic meal."

Joelle

Saint Augustine, FL

Tour: 10/02/17

Overall rating: rating 3 of 5

1st timer on Rick Steve: outstanding guide and good group but too regimented for me. Why not give us 1 or 2 free morning(s) and have PM visits instead so we could have leisurely breakfast? Too much museum time: LOVED the guided walks in cities but disliked museums in spite of outstanding local guides. I would give people option to follow guide or have their individual listening device if they prefer so they can go at their rhythm, and meet at a fixed in advance time.

Favorite "WOW" moment

"Hmmm..... I could have stayed in Venice the whole time - but my fav' moments were probably the Orvietto winery and the cooking school"

Madonna

Lenexa, KS

Tour: 10/02/17

Overall rating: rating 5 of 5

This was a wonderful tour, from the speedboat into Venice to the Trevi fountain, and everything in between. Thanks for a great trip.

Favorite "WOW" moment

"My favorite "wow" moment was the godola's all together on the Grand canal with music playing, a full moon overhead and a Italian song floating over the water. It was magical."

Heidi

Wimberley, TX

Tour: 09/29/17

Overall rating: rating 5 of 5

What an amazing experience! I couldn't have asked for a better group of travelers, now friends and family! Jesse was so wonderful and we are blessed to have had this experience. I learned so very much and am still processing the experience. Thank you for such a well planned and enjoyable experience.

Favorite "WOW" moment

"I felt like the whole was a WOW moment. I am particularly impressed with the singing gondola ride, the amazing meal that had riboleta and puffs of heaven gnocci, the painting of Mary's presentation to the temple, the wine tour, the cooking class fun and learning how to make pasta, the meal Jesse put together for us to experience the amazing fresh foods that might be new to us, the back streets walk through Venice when Elizabetta had the amazing memory of her mom in a unique moment..."

Daniel

Vancouver, WA

Tour: 09/29/17

Overall rating: rating 5 of 5

Favorite "WOW" moment

"The wine tasting in Tuscany"

Christine

Cumberland, RI

Tour: 09/29/17

Overall rating: rating 5 of 5

What a wonderful experience! I visited Italy years ago and can say I"saw" Italy. This time I experienced the country. I learned so much from each guide,each sharing their knowledge and insights. The tour got you to all the big sights with no waiting and allowed lots of free time to discover each city for yourself. The shared events were special too, especially the cooking class and the winery visit. We were very lucky with the make-up of our group members. Everyone enjoyed mingling and sharing

Favorite "WOW" moment

"Because I had travelled to Italy before I didn't have a chance to be awed by Venice's canals or by the majesty of St. Peter's but instead my pleasures were small. Learning the fish market in Venice is housed in the oldest building was special. The view of Orvieto from the bus was special.The Vatican Museum at night was memorable."

Christie

Palo Alto, CA

Tour: 09/29/17

Overall rating: rating 4 of 5

Really enjoyed my fellow travelers. Liked the combination of group time, tours and meals with independent time.

Favorite "WOW" moment

"winery visit cooking class group dinner in Florence guide at Coliseum"

Diane

Burlington, WA

Tour: 09/29/17

Overall rating: rating 4 of 5

Favorite "WOW" moment

"The gondola ride in Venice was the highlight of my trip. It was so amazing that it seemed like the highlight of my life. However, I was completely overwhelmed when I stepped into St Mark's Square for the first time. I stood staring at the beauty before me. It seemed unbelievable and transcendent to absorb."

Kay

Fairfax, VA

Tour: 09/29/17

Overall rating: rating 5 of 5

Really enjoyed the local guides who were engaging and passionate about their respective cities. I would never have been able to appreciate what I was seeing without them. I also appreciated the unique experiences that I believe only a guided tour could provide, like the serenaded gondola ride thru Venice, and the in-depth winery experience in the Umbria province. Jesse got us up early to enjoy the sights before they became too crowded.

Favorite "WOW" moment

"There were many - the serenaded gondola, the breathtaking vineyard, ancient Rome and the Pantheon top the list."

Sara

Mundelein, IL

Tour: 09/29/17

Overall rating: rating 5 of 5

This was my husband's and my first Rick Steves' tour, and it really exceeded our expectations. We wanted guidance for touring the "big three" in Italy, and this tour was definitely the right decision. We enjoyed the family-run hotels, and being in the heart of the city near the sights we wanted to see. We also learned a lot about public transportation and finding our way when we got a bit lost on our own. The combination of sights, group meals and free time worked well for our group.

Favorite "WOW" moment

"Seeing the David at the Accademia in Florence: Our group went in the evening and stayed until closing. At one point, my husband and I were the only ones in the room with the sculpture. That was special!"

Stephen

Olney, MD

Tour: 09/29/17

Overall rating: rating 4 of 5

Our first Rick Steve's trip. Well planned and executed. Enough that we will seriously consider another RS tour.

Favorite "WOW" moment

"Many wow moments to choose from but one that stuck out was the cooking experience in Florence."

Robert

Palo Alto, CA

Tour: 09/29/17

Overall rating: rating 5 of 5

I wasn't sure whether I'd like being on a tour, but this one exceeded my expectations. I appreciated skipping the line at very busy museums, the local guides who helped set the context for what we were seeing, our fellow tour mates who were easy-going and fun, the reasonable Rick Steves' style hotels (especially in Venice), and finally, the meals which were good to excellent and served with very good wines. Rick Steve' travel philosophy was clearly reflected in every aspect of this tour.

Favorite "WOW" moment

"The winery tour and tasting at Tenuta Le Velette on the way to Rome. Cecilia, owner of the winery, was an incredible guide who seemed to love describing its history beginning many centuries ago in Etruscan and then Roman times, showing us the buildings and underground tunnels, and then describing the excellent food and wine pairings served in a large dining room."

Janet

Tucson, AZ

Tour: 09/29/17

Overall rating: rating 5 of 5

The trip was wonderful. Venice, Florence and Rome are beautiful cities. Our tours covered all the highlights. The guides were both informative and fun. Everyone on the tour was enjoyable company. We indulged in some outstanding meals. The hotels were nice and conveniently located. The bus rides between cities were smooth, easy, and had free wireless internet available!

Favorite "WOW" moment

"Always a difficult question to answer, since there are so many wonderful sites and experiences to choose. Since Venice is such an beautiful city and my favorite of the three, my #1 Wow: Riding the vaporetto (either evening or daylight trip) on the Grand Canal in Venice."

Pamela

Seattle, WA

Tour: 09/29/17

Overall rating: rating 5 of 5

I highly recommend taking this tour!! We really enjoyed our group members and the guide. We had a nice mix of group time and individual time. We saw everything we wanted and needed to see while in Venice, Florence and Rome.

Kathleen

Amherst, NY

Tour: 09/29/17

Overall rating: rating 5 of 5

The destinations, hotel locations and museum tours were outstanding. Really enjoyed the pace of the activities and the free time. It was well-thought out by your team.

Favorite "WOW" moment

"I would say that our cooking class in Florence was fabulous and then dining in the cellar was such fun. Lots of laughs and delicious food. Our trip to the winery in Umbria was another delight. Viewing David, the Pieta and the Colosseum was awe inspiring. Our hotel was located dear the Spanish Steps and we spent an extra day in Rome. We walked up the steps and heard two opera singers performing in the alley Sunday night. Goosebumps!!"

Judy

Vancouver, WA

Tour: 09/29/17

Overall rating: rating 5 of 5

I thoroughly enjoyed all aspects of the trip. The guide was outstanding, our fellow travelers were all delightful and helpful. The sites the tour took us to struck a nice balance The local guides were knowledgeable and fun to be with. I felt we made good use of our free time; we had pre-planned most activities using the Rick Steves Italy book. On our own, we went to the Borghese, the Doge's Palace, and Castel Sant Angelo, some which Jesse our guide suggested.

Favorite "WOW" moment

"My wow moments were seeing the magnificent art (David, The Pieta) that these three cities had to offer. Fun times: cooking class, wine tasting trip. Jesse our guide showed an interest in all of us on the tour, engaging us in conversations about our experiences."

Catherine

Cumberland, RI

Tour: 09/29/17

Overall rating: rating 5 of 5

I had the best guided trip on this VFR Rick Steves tour. Each day was so well planned to give the max free and strucured time. Our personal guide and the private guides were excellent, so eager to share and personalize their knowledge. I just loved learning from them. All the activities esp museums and the times when we entered were really outstanding. The shared meals gave us good insight into the food culture of each city. The tour was organized to give the best experience possible.

Favorite "WOW" moment

"The visit to the island of Torcello resonated for me. I could imagine how the first Venetians lived and worshipped. Sitting in the small chapel was quite moving. In Florence my early morning visit to Piazza Michaelangelo was very serene. Watching the beautiful city awaken was very lovely. As I listened to every guide, I became more and more proud to be Italian!"

Casandra

Port Lavaca, TX

Tour: 09/29/17

Overall rating: rating 5 of 5

It was amazing and I am recommending it to friends. Well organized and guides were very educated and fun!

Favorite "WOW" moment

"The winery and the tasting...the view was breathtaking!"

John

Seattle, WA

Tour: 09/25/17

Overall rating: rating 5 of 5

The tour guide was very good. He was polite, spoke well, and kept the group interested. The tour destinations were for the most part enjoyable, although the boat excursion in Venice was a bit lack luster. The cooking trip in Florence was a hoot.

Favorite "WOW" moment

"Oddly, I liked the cooking school I didn't expect to enjoy it, but I did."

Mari

Kenmore, WA

Tour: 09/25/17

Overall rating: rating 5 of 5

Everyday was fabulous! I went to Italy to turn 60. (I highly recommend this - the best way to celebrate.) But I came away with a great appreciation for history. To me, history was dusty, no connection. Our leader, Graeme, made it a point to give us knowledge before our visits to the sites/areas so we would fully understand what we were experiencing. And he did it in a way that made it interesting and relatable. I can now say that history is not dusty ... and is very alive.

Favorite "WOW" moment

"I had two tingly moments... well, three if you count starring at Michelangelo's statute of David for 30 minutes. The first was in a church in Rome under which archaeologists had found 4 'layers' of history with the oldest being dated to a Roman street in 400 AD. We were able to walk that street and enter a home from that period - the aqueduct was still providing water to it! The second was at the Forum. Standing on a slab of marble, it hit me that I could be standing where Caesar had walked."

Marc

Issaquah, WA

Tour: 09/25/17

Overall rating: rating 5 of 5

It was a wonderful experience. I'm not the most outgoing guy and I was concerned about being in a group of people that I had never met before (other than my wife), but I have to say that I very much enjoyed getting to know the people on the tour. Everyone was so easy to get along with and they all had very positive attitudes throughout.

Favorite "WOW" moment

"There were so many that it is hard to pick one moment. Seeing David in Florence was very cool. The Sistine Chapel (although uncomfortably crowded) was also amazing. St Peters, the Colosseum and Pantheon too."

Kelly

Stoughton, MA

Tour: 09/25/17

Overall rating: rating 5 of 5

I was very happy with my tour experience. It exceeded my expectations. Every place I would have wanted to visit was included on this trip. It highlighted all of the main attractions as well as exploring hidden gems that I would not have otherwise visited if I had gone without the tour.

Favorite "WOW" moment

"It was all incredible. It would be too difficult to pick one wow moment."

George

Pensacola, FL

Tour: 09/25/17

Overall rating: rating 5 of 5

It was a wonderful experience. Graeme kept us informed, engaged and caffeinated. I'm sure there are other great tour guides in your organization but I cannot imagine that anyone could have been more perfect for our group and our trip. He taught us so much about Italian art and history and made it all so fascinating. Our tour group was a fantastic mix of great people. No "grumps" or "Debbie Downers" in the bunch. I don't know how y'all screen your customers so well.

Favorite "WOW" moment

"Seeing and hearing Graeme talk about the Caravaggio paintings at the chiesa s. Luigi dei Francesi"

Ruth

Marana, AZ

Tour: 09/25/17

Overall rating: rating 5 of 5

Amazing tour. Loved all the the guides which made the trip incredibly entertaining and informative. I have a whole new appreciation for the history and art of these amazing cities.

Daniel

Exeter, NH

Tour: 09/25/17

Overall rating: rating 5 of 5

Fantastic tour and tour guide. Great location of hotels and the local city guides were also great.

Favorite "WOW" moment

"Visiting the St. Clemente Church in Rome was such a surprise and inspirational experience"

Christian

Marana, AZ

Tour: 09/25/17

Overall rating: rating 4 of 5

Had a great trip! I enjoyed the tour guide as well as all of the local guides as well. I would definitely recommend Rick Steves tours to others.

Favorite "WOW" moment

"My wow moment was probably the Coliseum and forum in Rome. Also seeing Venice and all of its canals and waterways as well as some of the surrounding islands."

Rebecca

Issaquah, WA

Tour: 09/25/17

Overall rating: rating 5 of 5

This was our first Rick Steve's tour and it exceeded our expectations in all ways. It provided a great balance between guided and pre-planned activities and free time to explore the great cities of Italy on our own. The ten days flew by.

Favorite "WOW" moment

"So many! Perhaps the best was a group Italian Tuscany dinner. Great food, great service and great new friends."

Robert

Knoxville, TN

Tour: 09/22/17

Overall rating: rating 5 of 5

Outstanding tour of history, art, architecture and culture. Hotels, food and free time where all excellent. Our guide, Ben, was fabulous as where the local guides at each location.

Favorite "WOW" moment

"To many to pick one. St. Marc's Basilica, the David, the Coliseum and on and on."

Mike

Springfield, MO

Tour: 09/22/17

Overall rating: rating 5 of 5

This was our first trip to Europe, first group tour. first Rick Steves tour. Really had no idea what to expect. Well, this tour was just perfect. We had a blast! A great group of people, great guide, great food & wine. Couldn;t be happier with our choice. Would love to return to Italy and other countries with Rick. We learned so much and also feel like we could travel on our own after this. Hope to travel again soon. Thanks for a unforgetable trip!

Favorite "WOW" moment

"There are so many. Stepping off the boat in Venice into another time. St. Mark's basilica Was breathtaking & when the lights came up it took on a whole different level. Truly a spirtual experence. The other goosebumps moment was walking into the Pantheon. Incredible! Just incredible!"

Ian

Hope, ID

Tour: 09/22/17

Overall rating: rating 5 of 5

First tour and Ben was the perfiect introduction to the tour experience. The tour was the perfect blend of time with local guides and with Ben and the free time made the whole experience seamless and very enjoyable.

Favorite "WOW" moment

"The cooking class in Florence"

Gabriela

San Jose, CA

Tour: 09/22/17

Overall rating: rating 4 of 5

Overall, I was very happy with the tour my husband and I were able to join in our quest to travel to Italy. I really enjoyed that the trip was inclusive of different areas that make up Italy. What I mean by this is that I felt we were able to get a little taste of everything. We toured the urban cities, but still were able to visit small islands like Burano or visit something different like the countryside. Going to the Winery was a fun experience. Overall, we left with only positives.

Favorite "WOW" moment

"My "wow" moment was when I tried the two pasta dishes during our first dinner in Rome. I was blown away by the amazing taste of the pasta. The small senior who cooked the pasta was amazing; still very active and very friendly."

Ruby

Mahtomedi, MN

Tour: 09/22/17

Overall rating: rating 5 of 5

This was my very first tour and I was most interested in learning if this could meet all or most of my expectations for an outstanding trip! I can honestly say, it exceeded all my expectations. Ben Cameron was an excellent tour guide. He was organized, punctual, and very knowledgeable about all aspects of our tour. I very much appreciated his arranging with local guides to share their knowledge and experiences. All were outstanding and it gave me a greater appreciation for what we were seeing.

Favorite "WOW" moment

"It is hard to pick just one but for me, seeing Michelangelo's David. I don't think I will ever forget it! All of the history that was shared with us and then seeing this most impressive piece of art was unbelievable!"

Cheryl

Hope, ID

Tour: 09/22/17

Overall rating: rating 5 of 5

My husband and I had a marvelous time. We loved the set up of the trip with information about the area, an orientation walk and, as well as our own guide, Ben, local guides who lived in the area who were able to really help us understand what we were looking at! After our 4-5 hours with the guides we had the rest of the day, and often the evening,to explore on our own. Transportation was seamless and our hotels were good, with good breakfasts at all 3 hotels.

Favorite "WOW" moment

"I especially liked the visit to a local farm on the way to Rome. It felt like we had truly done something off the beaten path. Our farmer, Marco, had a number of acres of olive trees and grape vines that he had planted within the last 20 years. He was passionate about what he was doing and shared that passion-and lots of wine and food. It was a great afternoon."

Vicky

Springfield, MO

Tour: 09/22/17

Overall rating: rating 5 of 5

It was amazing! We didn't know what to expect in th beginning, as we have never done this sort of thing. The sightseeing, the food, getting to know the others in our group, all was an amazing experience.

Favorite "WOW" moment

"There are so many of these, it's hard to choose! I would have to say St Marks Square and Cathedral was the top door me! I also very munched enjoyed the cooking class and visiting the winery/vineyard."

Melynda

Knoxville, TN

Tour: 09/22/17

Overall rating: rating 5 of 5

Above and beyond expectations.

Favorite "WOW" moment

"Sistine Chapel Ceiling--it was spiritual; cooking class in Florence; afternoon at Poggio della Volara"

Susan

Fallbrook, CA

Tour: 09/22/17

Overall rating: rating 5 of 5

wonderful, better than I had ever imagined it would be.

Favorite "WOW" moment

"meeting my cousin tiziano in Florence ."

Patricia

Orlando, FL

Tour: 09/22/17

Overall rating: rating 5 of 5

I enjoyed the entire tour. Our guide, Ben, was amazing and our group really enjoyed each other. The cities and schedule was arranged perfectly!

Favorite "WOW" moment

"The lunch at the olive and vineyard was great !!Ben"

Bruce

Goodyear, AZ

Tour: 09/22/17

Overall rating: rating 5 of 5

This was our first visit to Italy and it was grand! We were overwhelmed by all the great art and historical sites. Everywhere you turned there was something interesting to explore. Ten days will give you a taste, a good taste, but there is so much more to see. Will definitely return.

Favorite "WOW" moment

"Had to be the tour of the collesseum with our most excellent tour guide Francesca, she really brought it to life - 2000 years ago. St. Mark's Basilica was amazing too."

Terry

Wenonah, NJ

Tour: 09/22/17

Overall rating: rating 5 of 5

I had never been on a group tour before and the Rick Steves approach was everything I had hoped it would be. My concern traveling as a single person with mostly couples disappeared within hours as every single member could not have been more welcoming and enjoyable. You are absolutely correct when you say that your tours attract a certain kind of traveller. The guides, hotels, historical references and information, restaurants, and even the bus rides between cities, all terrific!

Favorite "WOW" moment

"Countless wow's but I have to say The David. The scale and setting blew me away. Probably the most beautiful and impressive thing I have ever seen."

Pamela

Peoria, IL

Tour: 09/18/17

Overall rating: rating 5 of 5

The tour was very well organized and ran smoothly. The tour guide (Stephanie) was exceptionally friendly and anticipated our every need. I enjoyed that Stephanie really encouraged us to immerse ourselves in the culture and helped us with things ranging from learning the language to navigating through a coffee bar.

Favorite "WOW" moment

"I liked Florence a lot more than I anticipated. I don't feel like someone who appreciates art as much as others, but the guided tours really helped me understand the paintings and appreciate the masterpieces."

Cyndy

Salinas, CA

Tour: 09/18/17

Overall rating: rating 5 of 5

IT WAS EVERYTHING I EXPECTED AND BETTER THAN I COULD HAVE EVER IMAGINED. WE HAD JUST THE RIGHT AMOUNT OF TOUR TIME VERSUS FREE TIME.I WILL 100% JOIN ANOTHER RICK STEVE'S TOUR WHEN I TRAVEL ABROAD. WE HAD A MAGICAL TIME.

Favorite "WOW" moment

"ST MARKS - VENICE FLORENCE - WINERY VISIT PATHEON (SPELLING?) - ROME EXCAVATION OF THREE CHURCH BUILT ONE ON TOP OF OTHER - ROME - I HAD TEARS"

Linda

Punta Gorda, FL

Tour: 09/18/17

Overall rating: rating 5 of 5

Wonderful tour. Good balance of activities and free time. Italy was absolutely awesome. Feel like we experienced everything we could have hoped for.

Favorite "WOW" moment

"The water taxi out to the Islands of Venice and the overall fascination of the vehicle-free Venice. Also, loved the miles and miles of walking and stair climbing. Never missed my usual workouts!"

Lynn

Vancouver, BC

Tour: 09/18/17

Overall rating: rating 4 of 5

Stephanie was wonderful and put a lot of effort into making special moments for us. All of the local guides were impressive. The hotel in Venice was lacking (breakfast not very good and hotel staff not very friendly). The bus trips were well -planned for stops and the wine tour near Orvieto was magnificent! The Vatican was over- crowded and not very enjoyable. Paulo spent too much time talking about photos of the Cistine Chapel. It was just too long. The tour was almost outstanding.

Favorite "WOW" moment

"Seeing the David. Stephanie set it up perfectly."

Steven

Santa Barbara, CA

Tour: 09/18/17

Overall rating: rating 5 of 5

The tour was very well planned and paced. Three days in each city was perfect. Stephanie was the best. All the guides were excellent. The best tour I've ever taken!!!

Favorite "WOW" moment

"The layers of building in Rome"

Michael

Appleton, WI

Tour: 09/18/17

Overall rating: rating 5 of 5

We had a great time from minute one till we left the hotel the last day. I loved the organization of the tour. It was a perfect mix of organized time and free time for us to explore. Similarly, the mix of group meals and free time to try a restaurant and order from a menu was great. There were a number of guide lead tours in each city and then free time for us to explore what else we'd like to see.

Favorite "WOW" moment

"Not certain that I can list only one "wow" moment from the tour but if I had to I can narrow it to two things, seeing Michelangelo's David at the Academia in Florence and se the Coliseum in Rome. Having said that, truly we felt like it was one 10 day "wow" moment."

Mickie

Port Townsend, WA

Tour: 09/18/17

Overall rating: rating 5 of 5

At 78 and 79 both with bad knees and one with Neuropathy, we were not prepared to go down steps without some difficulty and having to take one step at a time, try to find a hand rail and dodge people at the same time it became quite a challenge , then to have to hustle to keep up with the group, again while dodging some more people, we were quite worn out at the end of the day. Being able to witness the amazing sites and architecture was worth the struggle to see them.

Favorite "WOW" moment

"The one to top all my "wow" moments has to be the Collseum. Pictures don't do it justice. There were so many massive structures, but the with the Coliseum you could actually see how much building materials it took to construct, let alone how they ever did it moving massive stone as they did."

Robert

Burien, WA

Tour: 09/18/17

Overall rating: rating 4 of 5

The tour was just as expected. I was very pleased that we made it to all the sights and more. With the exception of one hotel, the lodging, meals, transportation and especially our tour guide were outstanding.

Favorite "WOW" moment

"When I saw the Coloseum it was a shocking moment for me. "It really does exist", which is what I said to myself. Sounds silly, but that is the moment that opened my eyes to the enormity of this past empire."

Linda

Appleton, WI

Tour: 09/18/17

Overall rating: rating 5 of 5

It was my first time in Italy and these 3 cities provided such a wonderful exposure. I found Venice unique in that we never had to deal with motorbikes/cars. Florence and Rome offered unforgettable art work and rich in history. Rome truly is the lasagna city, city built upon city built upon city. Obviously the Vatican, the Colosseum, and the Forum. Stephanie was such a knowledgeable guide, as were the individual ones we had in the different cities.

Favorite "WOW" moment

"Rome was the wow moment for me on this tour, so rich in history, the architecture, the Vatican, art work, just breathtaking. Our guide Franceska did a phenomenal job putting a human touch to the ruins of Roman, her literary analogies very interesting."

Dawn

Clare, MI

Tour: 09/18/17

Overall rating: rating 5 of 5

My husband and I were intending on experiencing Italy on our own. Then we decided it might be better for us to go on a tour. The Rick Steve's Tour wasn't our first choice but I'm sure glad we were too late to get on the tour we originally chose! We were more than satisfied with our experience!

Favorite "WOW" moment

"while visiting the ancient ruins of Rome, the tour guide made me feel what it would be like a Roman back in time. She touched my heart by her telling us some of her personal experiences along with the history."

Kay

Bellingham, WA

Tour: 09/15/17

Overall rating: rating 5 of 5

Wonderful. It was my first time in Venice, Florence, and Rome, and I am very glad I chose to experience Italy as part of a Rick Steves' tour. The restaurants that were included in the tour we exceptional and the food was a great choice. It gave us a taste of Italy. I enjoyed all the areas visited and appreciated the local tour guides provided. They were able to provide a very personal experience and knowledge of the areas visited.

Favorite "WOW" moment

"There were so many that I can't choose just one."

David

Kirkland, WA

Tour: 09/15/17

Overall rating: rating 5 of 5

Had a great time. Really liked our tour guide. The local guides were excellant with knowledge of history and society.

Favorite "WOW" moment

"The Colosseum in Rome."

Stephanie

Renton, WA

Tour: 09/15/17

Overall rating: rating 5 of 5

The tour was fabulous! Our tour guide was very knowledgeable providing us with the history of the areas were visiting, answers to never ending questions, and giving helpful suggestions of things to do in our free time. Everyone we traveled with was fun to be around and the local guides provided great insight and local flavor.

Favorite "WOW" moment

"There was do many it is hard to name one. I would have to say taking the water taxi to your Venice hotel and traveling the canals and realizing "I am really here"... it was great!"

Carolyn

Ellensburg, WA

Tour: 09/15/17

Overall rating: rating 5 of 5

My experience was absolutely outstanding! Our tour director, Graeme, was excellent with knowledge and personality. Definitely a trip to remember and share. I enjoyed every minute of our tour. Each day was filled with such interesting, fun and exciting new experiences!

Favorite "WOW" moment

"Experiencing water canals in Venice and climbing the 463 steps up the Duomo to experience a breath taking view of the city!"

Barbara

Kent, WA

Tour: 09/15/17

Overall rating: rating 5 of 5

Although I've been on several other tours, I didn't realize that staying in just 3 major cities would be more exhausting than traveling from place to place. However the tour guide, Graeme was fabulous and flexible. The group I traveled with was one of the best--everyone wanted to have a good time and were welcoming and helpful. Great experience.

Favorite "WOW" moment

"Wow moments? Let me see: Venice! Florence! Rome! However, probably standing in the Colosseum. Our tour guide (can't remember name) was one of the best guides I've every had."

Leonard

Lutherville Timonium, MD

Tour: 09/15/17

Overall rating: rating 5 of 5

Great experience, Graeme was top notch, very knowledgeable and had a great demeanor with all the group. As with my previous RS tour, the tour guide really makes the trip. I highly recommend Graeme.

Don

Portland, OR

Tour: 09/15/17

Overall rating: rating 5 of 5

This was our first trip to Italy, so we were not only eager to get a sound grounding in three spectacular new-to-us cities, but also somewhat daunted by Italy's "too-muchness," to borrow novelist Eleanor Clark's phrase. We appreciated the blend of group organization and individual freedom, and especially the caliber of guides throughout. Having basic logistics taken care of (hotels, tickets to major sites and inter-city travel) was a relief, and left more time and energy for the main journeying.

Favorite "WOW" moment

"You mean besides the 37 gelatos I consumed over 10 days? OK, I'll try. Perhaps catching a first glimpse of the Colosseum, beyond the traffic jam in the foreground. Perhaps the reflection off one of Venice's canals, and the realization that these really ARE its "streets." Perhaps Ghiberti's Gates of Paradise, or Bruneleschi's dome, or, yes, the Sistene Chapel, or the "history layer" of San Clemente church, or Bellini, Titian and Tintoretto at the Venetian Accademia. OK, I failed."

Monique

Eastsound, WA

Tour: 09/15/17

Overall rating: rating 5 of 5

It was incredible. All the details were thought of. Our guide was perfect. We had enough space to experience Italy the way my son & I would have wanted alone, and we had the luxury of someone holding our hands through the small things that come with being in another country. I really appreciated the accommodations, the travel arrangements, the sights & local guides, and the communal meals we had together. It was perfect!

Favorite "WOW" moment

"The colluseum for sure. Our guide that day really walked us through the history of all that we were about to take in that day. Our Rick Steve's guide was very attentive to the group and at the same time it was nice to have time solo with my son. It was definitely the most magnumus part of our trip."

Nell

Portland, OR

Tour: 09/15/17

Overall rating: rating 5 of 5

My husband and I felt that the tour exceeded our expectations. Graeme and the local guides were superb. They were not only knowledgeable but passionate about their subjects. The guiding truly was the highlight for us. We were also impressed by the quality of the hotels (appreciated the central locations!) and group meals. We liked the "structure" of the tour, with the orientation walk and group meal upon arrival at each new location, which allowed us to "get our bearings."

Favorite "WOW" moment

"The Sistine Chapel! Really appreciated Graeme's effort to get us an evening appointment."

Nancy

Seattle, WA

Tour: 09/15/17

Overall rating: rating 5 of 5

From beginning to end everything was wonderful. This is my third Rick Steve's tour and I think it was the best.

Favorite "WOW" moment

"All of them - I could never pick just one. Everyday was the best and I could not figure out how the next day could get better - and then that day was the best."

Michael

Camas, WA

Tour: 09/15/17

Overall rating: rating 5 of 5

Our guide was fantastic and the addition of the local guides was really insightful. Excellent tour!

Favorite "WOW" moment

"When the lights came on inside of St. Marks Bacilica. The golden glow of the mosaics almost left me speechless. Not sure I have seen anything so beautiful in my life..."

Nancy

Broomfield, CO

Tour: 09/15/17

Overall rating: rating 5 of 5

My trip was wonderful! We saw so much amazing art and architecture! Our guide was absolutely wonderful! We had a very nice friendly group of fellow travelers that made it fun!

Favorite "WOW" moment

"It is hard to pick out one special moment. I think St Mark,s Basilica in Venice was one of the top. It was so beautiful and being there when it was lit up was amazing! I also really enjoyed the cooking school in Florence....it was fun, informative and very delicious!"

Janet

Kirkland, WA

Tour: 09/15/17

Overall rating: rating 5 of 5

This was our first guided Rick Steves tour having only done one My Way tour previously. It was great! The advantages of the guided tour were having a very knowledgeable and fun tour guide, having tickets included in the price, getting into museums as a group avoiding longer lines, having all hotels and transportation included and having some meals as a group.

Favorite "WOW" moment

"Seeing Michaelangelo's The David!"

Christine

Camas, WA

Tour: 09/15/17

Overall rating: rating 5 of 5

We loved our guide and the sites.

Favorite "WOW" moment

"St. Mark's Basilica when it was lit up."

Patricia

Ridgefield, WA

Tour: 09/11/17

Overall rating: rating 5 of 5

This trip was magical for me. The sites we saw and learned about were just fantastic. The group melded like old friends and I can't say enough wonderful things about Nina. She was so personable and knowledgeable. I think she made the history we learned come alive in each city. The added guides were fantastic, loved their jobs and gave us their all on each tour. Nina made us laugh and feel so comfortable. We had a person injured and she handled the upheaval without batting an eye.

Favorite "WOW" moment

"The gondola at sunset with music, The Coleseum!"

Desley

El Granada, CA

Tour: 09/11/17

Overall rating: rating 5 of 5

I have been watching Rick Steves on PBS for years, so this was my first experience on one of your tours, as was the rest of the group. Nina was a great guide, the group all really got along well and I had a blast. The week prior I was in the Amalfi coast and I thought that would be the highlight of my trip, but it really wasn't, it was this tour. The camaraderie with the group was totally unexpected and as a single traveler I was welcomed by others to join them on their daily jaunts/dinner.

Favorite "WOW" moment

"I LOVED Venice. I had arrived a few days early but still could have spent longer there. Personally when I walked into St. Mark's square and saw the Basilica, it was just so beautiful, I could have cried. I have wanted to go to Venice all my life and finally I was there. I also loved the cooking class in Florence as well as the wine tasting in Umbria...both fantastic. I, however was not wowed by the Vatican, and I should have been, but it was way too crowded, but still glad that I went."

Muriel

Toronto, ON

Tour: 09/11/17

Overall rating: rating 5 of 5

This Rick Steves' "Best of Venice, Florence & Rome" tour was a wonderful introduction to Italy for my husband Nigel and me. There were so many wonderful experiences, from St. Mark's Basilica in Venice to the Uffizi in Florence to the Sistine Chapel in Rome, and many more in between, so that I would highly recommend this tour!

Favorite "WOW" moment

"At our hotel in Venice, meeting our wonderful guide Nina and fellow travellers, and knowing that this was going to be one fun trip together!"

David

Carmichael, CA

Tour: 09/11/17

Overall rating: rating 5 of 5

Our tour guide was outstanding , and our local guides were extremely knowledgeable and willing to answer all of our questions. Our accommodations were well located, comfy and sufficient, and provided us with excellent breakfasts to start each day. I believe we had a good balance of cultural history, art appreciation, free time and fun activities. There was no lost time in our schedule. Every day was filled, often leaving us tired but not exhausted and able to recuperate by the following morning.

Favorite "WOW" moment

"Our tour of the coliseum and the forum in Rome was shocking. I was blown away by the size and the grandeur of the buildings. And also the vastness of the total complex. Seeing it in person was much more impressive than watching a tv documentary."

Mary

Olympia, WA

Tour: 09/11/17

Overall rating: rating 5 of 5

This was the tour I wanted. The sites (and sights) covered, the smooth arrangements, the helpful background information that made the experiences more understandable and richer. Many times, as Nina directed us into a line for a museum or church and handed each of us our ticket, my husband and I said, "Can you imagine if we'd had to figure all this out ourselves and make these arrangements?" The tour was a good balance of planned and unplanned time. Our tour group companions were amiable.

Favorite "WOW" moment

"There were many Wow moments. The city museums and churches were all Wows, especially St. Clements in Rome. But I really loved the stop at Tenute le Vallette--Cecilia's talk was lovely and informative, but most especially the wine tasting and food laid out in that lovely room."

Georgette

Shoreline, WA

Tour: 09/11/17

Overall rating: rating 5 of 5

My husband and I just loved this tour. Everything exceeded our expectations. We saw so much and learned about what we want to cover next time. Everything went quite smoothly, well organized, easy check ins at hotels, local orientation had us navigating the streets right away.

Favorite "WOW" moment

"How to pick a favorite? One of the most unexpected for me was the gold mosaics of San Marco, Venice. I had previously not been too excited by icons and mosaics, thinking them flat and unexpressive. But seeing them in situ, where they were designed to be, with the changing light, was an intensely moving experience."

Heidi

Everett, WA

Tour: 09/11/17

Overall rating: rating 5 of 5

I loved most everything about this tour, even the few times it rained did not make a difference. I do not ordinarily go for "organized fun" but this tour was the perfect way to experience Italy for the 1st time. I saw and learned so many things I would not have on my own.

Favorite "WOW" moment

"So many to choose from but a really special time was visiting San Clemente Basilica in Rome, I was truly blown away by it and would never have known about it or visited it."

Joseph

Olympia, WA

Tour: 09/11/17

Overall rating: rating 5 of 5

Great introduction to Italy. Nina and our other guides were major contributors to the success of the tour. Italy itself was the object and the primary success factor. We very much appreciated Nina's lessons in Italian history, culture, language, and customs. She put the tour and our experiences into a unified context. She was also witty and great fun.

Favorite "WOW" moment

"The Sistine Chapel. Period."

Torivio

Vancouver, WA

Tour: 09/11/17

Overall rating: rating 5 of 5

Overall the Italy tour was exceptional and very informative. Our tour guide Nina was very well versed on Italy and its many wonders. Venice, Florence and Rome were great introductions to Italy. The Vatican was the only down side but with too many tourists it was bound to be expected. Many of us felt rushed and wanted a bit more time.

Favorite "WOW" moment

"DAVID"

Mary

Clackamas, OR

Tour: 09/11/17

Overall rating: rating 5 of 5

I injured my knee the very first day and was unable to walk. Our tour guide, Nina, was an absolute gem in helping me obtain crutches and wheelchair assistance as needed. The trip involves strenuous walking, so I was not able to do everything, but with Nina's care and attention, I got to enjoy many of the trip's features. The tour itself is wonderful, hitting all the "must-see" museums and adding great experiences like a cooking class in Florence and a wine tasting on the way to Rome.

Favorite "WOW" moment

"It is so hard to pick just one! I'd have to say it was the Vatican. Even though there is a veritable ocean of people constantly flowing through it, just seeing it for myself connected me to all the history there. Of course it is beautiful, and awe-inspiring, but it is also a brick and mortar connection to a religious link going back over a thousand years."

Sharon

Lake City, FL

Tour: 09/11/17

Overall rating: rating 5 of 5

Nina was an excellent guide. She helped me and my husband personally by suggesting taxis and elevators because we both had unexpected leg and hip pain due to injury and tendonitis.

Favorite "WOW" moment

"The San Clements Church and going underground three levels was exciting to me."

Kenneth

Tigard, OR

Tour: 09/11/17

Overall rating: rating 5 of 5

This was my first Rick Steves tour, in fact my first trip overseas.The Rick Steves tour format was the perfect way to introduce me to enjoying Italy. Our guide Nina was organized,knowledgable,funny, and always ready to assist you on a pearsonal level. None of the 28 tour travelers had been on a Rick Steves tour before we all had great time together! I had a terrific experiance getting to know all my fellow travelers.

Favorite "WOW" moment

"For me, in Venice I loved the Academia museum the works of Titan,and exploring the streets of the local food and wine shops. In Florence, I loved the cooking class and lunch we had and gazing on Botticellis'The Birth of Venus and the statue of David by Michelangelo. In Rome, The Colosseum was a fantastic moment for me Just to walk along touching the structure ,feeling that connection with the history of that building."

Carol Lynn

Carmichael, CA

Tour: 09/11/17

Overall rating: rating 5 of 5

Each day of the tour brought remarkable experiences, eye-opening insights, great fun, incredible food, and excellent, ideally located lodgings. Our wonderful guide Nina and the local guides challenged us to see more deeply, understanding both history and it's impact on life and culture today. Along the way we enjoyed great conversations and many moments of shared hilarity with our welcoming and helpful fellow travelers.

Favorite "WOW" moment

"What keeps coming back to mind is our incredible experience with local guide Tanya in the Uffizi Gallery in Florence. She transformed "looking at art" into truly seeing it, connecting with the painting, the artist and the times so that the work of Botticelli, Leonardo, Michelangelo and so many others truly came alive for us. Even when the tour ended, Tanya was more than willing to walk with us through the Caravaggio paintings, enlivening them for us as well. A very special treat!"

Susan

Cleveland, OH

Tour: 09/11/17

Overall rating: rating 5 of 5

I was traveling by myself and our group was friendly and I really bonded with the other folks on the tour. We all followed the basic Rick Steves guidelines especially NO GRUMPS! It was a bit like tourist bootcamp but I had worked out to get in shape for all the walking. I loved the use of public transit. Our guide was tops!

Favorite "WOW" moment

"The whole trip was a wow moment for me!"

Stephen

Vancouver, WA

Tour: 09/11/17

Overall rating: rating 5 of 5

OMG! I had my doubts about the monetary cost of this trip. It turned out to be worth it! Rick Steves is a great way to explore areas you have never been.

Favorite "WOW" moment

"My first glimpse of David at the Academmia as I turned the corner. The lighting and sight made my heart flutter."

Ron

Everett, WA

Tour: 09/11/17

Overall rating: rating 5 of 5

The tour was well organized with our schedules and expectations were clearly communicated to us. Our tour guide Nina was wonderful. I would go on another tour with her as our guide anytime. She was kind, yet humorous and very knowledgeable. All arranged meals and transportation was seamless and very convenient for all of us in the group. I'd highly recommend this 10 days of Italy tour to anyone interested in visiting and learning the history of this beautiful country.

Favorite "WOW" moment

"Probably the first time we arrived at Saint Mark's Square in Venice and was awestruck by the sight and history. Secondly our tour of the old winery and visiting the underground cellars was really nice."

Phyllis

Elkins, NH

Tour: 09/08/17

Overall rating: rating 5 of 5

Stacy our tour guide was amazing! She brought all three cities to life. The tour was a great mix of scheduled and free time with some surprise....a very emotional stop at the Florence US Cemetery.

Favorite "WOW" moment

"There were wow moments every day, but my favorite was the Michelangelo Crucifix at the Basilica of Santa Maria del Santo Spirito in Florence and our trip to Torcello Island."

Cathlyn

Saint Augustine, FL

Tour: 09/08/17

Overall rating: rating 4 of 5

My husband, Michael and I enjoyed this fabulous tour of Venice, Florence and Rome. The group was amazing- such wonderful people. Stacy was intelligent, smart, funny and flexible. The tour guides were all wonderfully informed and could communicate easily. The hotels were pleasant, clean & breakfasts were more than ample. It was the perfect complement of tour and free time. Loved getting into museums with groups.

Favorite "WOW" moment

"So many 'wow' moments. Santa Croce church in Venice - seeing Michelangelo's grave site moved me to unexpected tears. My husband loved the wine tasting in Umbria. I was beyond thrilled with the art in Florence & history of Rome. Getting into the Vatican Museums at night, was especially spectacular. Stacy got our group into St. Peters' the 1st night in Rome incl a fabulous march through Rome, Hadrian's resting place, outside of Pantheon, the Trevi Fountain, Spanish Steps and Presidential Palace."

Marilyn

Cincinnati, OH

Tour: 09/08/17

Overall rating: rating 5 of 5

Enjoyed our tour director Stacy and the local guides added another dimension and interesting facts to the program. Stacy was very aware of everyone's needs and accommodated with ease. We enjoyed meeting others in the group and forming some great relationships. I liked the number (28 I think) in our group - it made everything manageable. We enjoyed the amount of free time we had to do our own thing as well as the organized activities and meals.

Favorite "WOW" moment

"I really enjoyed many things - especially the winery and olive orchard visit. I also enjoyed the cooking class, the Vatican and some of the many museums and churches we visited"

Carrie

Elk Grove, CA

Tour: 09/08/17

Overall rating: rating 5 of 5

Phenomenal! Loved the tour guide, the group, the activities, it was a trip of a lifetime.

Favorite "WOW" moment

"Each city had a "Wow" moment. Even our traveling days were eventful, spending time on 9/11 at the American Cemetery, wine tasting in Umbria, to attending mass at St Peter's Basilica and receiving a blessing from the Pope in St. Peter's square. I cannot say enough. Thank you"

Susan

Plattsburgh, NY

Tour: 09/08/17

Overall rating: rating 5 of 5

I loved the trip! It was just as I hoped. The time dedicated by Stacey, tour guide was information packed and the time on our own allowed us to explore at our leisure. The places we went and the things we saw were priceless. Loved the visit to the American Veteran cemetry was an unexpected but moving addition to the trip. I was so moved by the splendor of this site. In this time where ppl seem to have no idea about what it means to be an American, this visit reinforced that belief. loved it all!

Favorite "WOW" moment

"Favorite was the cemetry, next cooking class, and visit to farm because they were all so unexpected. All the tour guides were informative and made learning fun!"

David

Plattsburgh, NY

Tour: 09/08/17

Overall rating: rating 5 of 5

It was fantastic

Favorite "WOW" moment

"The statue of David"

Denise

Stoneham, MA

Tour: 09/08/17

Overall rating: rating 5 of 5

The overall tour experience was wonderful. This was due in large part to our tour guide Stacy. She gave us so much information, not just about the sites we were seeing, but about the inner workings of Italy and the towns we visited. The pace of the tour was good. There was enough free time so that we could explore on our own. The local tour guides were outstanding. I learned so much about the artwork and the history of the places we visited.

Favorite "WOW" moment

"It's hard to pick just one but I think the one I loved the most was the wine tasting. The vineyard and Tuscany were breathtakingly beautiful and lunch was fantastic!"

Laurie

Everett, WA

Tour: 09/08/17

Overall rating: rating 5 of 5

We enjoyed our tour very much and enjoyed getting to know the people on our tour. The events that were planned were very informative, fun, and unique. We were hesitant of joining a tour and spending so much time with people we did not know. After spending a short time on our tour, we realized what a great group of people we had the pleasure of meeting and getting to know.

Favorite "WOW" moment

"Our first night on the tour in Venice, our wonderful guide who lived in Venice, offered to set up gondola rides in the early evening for anyone on our tour who was interested. The cost was was far less than if we would have paid if we set up this optional event on our own because another couple rode with us. There was a great male singer who serenaded us throughout our ride, and it was a magical moment since both my husband and I were determined to experience a gondola ride."

Kevin

Edmonton, AB

Tour: 09/08/17

Overall rating: rating 5 of 5

Great tour. Really enjoyed Stacy and the local flavour the city specific guides added to the tour. As a first time "tour person", I was very sceptical. But Stacy kept things on track and made the trip fun. The group we had, I can only hope is typical of all Rick Steves tours as they were a great bunch of people. Everyone got along well and it was like we were traveling with a group of friends we had known for years.

Favorite "WOW" moment

"The cooking lesson in Florence was my overall favourite moment of the tour. It was so much fun. Otherwise just the things we saw that were explained with so much knowledge from the local guides was beyond my expectations"

Thomas

Cincinnati, OH

Tour: 09/08/17

Overall rating: rating 5 of 5

Impressed by overall tour guide and local guides were outstanding as well.

Favorite "WOW" moment

"The Colosseum in Rome was an eye opener."

James

Ballwin, MO

Tour: 09/08/17

Overall rating: rating 5 of 5

All aspects of the tour, from pre-planning through execution on the last morning were handled very well. During the planning stage I contacted the tour office three times with questions, and each time I received a prompt and correct answer. Tour hotels were large enough to be comfortable yet intimate enough to provide a personal feeling and to give insight into how the locals lived.

Favorite "WOW" moment

"I had been to all three featured cities previously. Had that not been the case, just entering the cities and realizing I was there would have been my "wow" moments. Given that, my "wow" moment was the wonderful farm house lunch in Umbria as the bus made its way from Florence to Rome. The host provided information about his olive orchards and grape vineyards in a very personal way to show his connection to the land. This was followed by a wine tasting and a delicious buffet lunch."

Shauna

Pasadena, CA

Tour: 09/05/17

Overall rating: rating 4 of 5

This was the first tour for either my husband or me. My first impression is that we got a great value for our money. I had been to Italy twice before and had experienced standing in line at the Uffizi and the Vatican. This time, we went to the head of the line, saving hours of our valuable time. Our guide, Ferdi, was extremely knowledgeable, polite and helpful. He was a great asset to the tour. I also enjoyed the other members of our tour.

Favorite "WOW" moment

"For me, it was seeing the Trevi fountain after restoration. In my prior trips it looked soiled and rundown."

Helen

Butler, PA

Tour: 09/05/17

Overall rating: rating 5 of 5

Our 10-day Italy vacation was glorious in every way. The tour was well-planned out. Everything was organized. Time management was important to keep the schedule on track. The group members quickly learned this. Information and planning we received from the Rick Steves Guide Book gave us practical advice and once in Italy we felt well-prepared for our vacation. Beginning with the choice of directions to get from the airport to our hotel. The directions were very specific.

Favorite "WOW" moment

"Favorite "wow" moment, for me, was seeing the finger prints and hand prints of DaVinci uncovered by the art restoration of one of his paintings. While for my husband his "wow" moment was the luncheon at the wine vineyard and olive grower."

Linda

Lake Forest, IL

Tour: 09/05/17

Overall rating: rating 5 of 5

I enjoyed the tour very much. I felt it was a good mix of touring/group events and free time to explore.

Favorite "WOW" moment

"Seeing Michelangelo's David and the Sistine Chapel were exciting moments for me."

Marilyn

Placerville, CA

Tour: 09/05/17

Overall rating: rating 5 of 5

We had the best vacation of our life! Our guide Ferdi was the best and all the others were great too . Ferdi made us feel like family. The cooking class in Florence was so much fun and the chefs made it such a fun time too . We hope to go back and do it again.

Favorite "WOW" moment

"Our favorite and biggest "wow" moment was when we were on our beautiful wooden water taxi coming in to Venice and going through the canals to our hotel. That was definitely a "WOW"! Loved it all!"

Gordon

Grapeview, WA

Tour: 09/05/17

Overall rating: rating 5 of 5

Informative, educational, entertaining, not ever to not be remembered.

Favorite "WOW" moment

"Too many to even put down one!"

Marilyn

Grapeview, WA

Tour: 09/05/17

Overall rating: rating 4 of 5

It was our first time and met all of our needs and expectations.

Favorite "WOW" moment

"The Umbrian wine house and day there."

William

Murray, KY

Tour: 09/05/17

Overall rating: rating 4 of 5

The tour was wonderful, a combination of group touring and individual on your own experiences.

Favorite "WOW" moment

"The Vatican tour was what I wanted to experience most and it was very special.The Sistine Chapel and St. Peters are two places that are must see. The Vatican museum is not bad!"

Julie

Woodland Hills, CA

Tour: 09/04/17

Overall rating: rating 5 of 5

We had a very cohesive group of individuals who all "gelled" as a working group. We shared common interests and enthusiam. I loved seeing all the many facets of each of the three cities, and enjoyed all the walking that we did to get around the cities.

Favorite "WOW" moment

"I loved each of our group dinners in each city, a chance for all of us to slow down and bond and share together. I loved our gondola ride and the all we all shared going back amidst the dark quiet streets of Venice. Loved the wine tasting afternoon and the cooking class in Florence. This is a very busy tour with so much history and information to take in each day, that these "easy and more relaxed times" were much needed and loved."

Lynne

Nashville, TN

Tour: 09/04/17

Overall rating: rating 5 of 5

It was excellent. It was so nice that all the hotels were booked for us as well as all of the tours. It was very organized and I can't say enough about our tour guide Rozanne Stringer. She was exceptional. I was a little concerned about touring with people I did not know but, everyone got along well and looked after each other. It was also a physically active tour which I did not mind.

Favorite "WOW" moment

"It is difficult to say because there were so many "wow" moments. I would say the gondola ride in Venice, David in Florence and the Sistine Chapel in Rome."

Danny

Kenmore, WA

Tour: 09/04/17

Overall rating: rating 5 of 5

Our guide, Rozanne, was awesome. She was very accommodating and bent over backwards to meet everyone's needs. The knowledge not only Rozanne had, but the local guides also, enhanced our travel experience. The places we went and experience were amazing. Part of our tour included taking a cooking class in Florence and visiting a winery on the way to Rome, they were both special treats.

Favorite "WOW" moment

"There were so many it is hard to just pick one. I would have to say seeing the David in Florence brought tears to my eyes. I had heard about the David from others for years, but to be in the presence of this wonderful work of art was opening and awe inspiring. My wife and I were celebrating our honeymoon, so taking a gondola ride with our group and having the musicians in our boat was also a wow moment. Rozanne arranged for us to be in that boat."

Anita

Kenmore, WA

Tour: 09/04/17

Overall rating: rating 5 of 5

I was nervous about travelling "with all those people" But once we all met, it was so easy! One of the best factors in our Tour Package was our guide, Rozanne, had our backs at every moment. Before we could even think of what we needed to know, she informed us about it.She was kind, compassionate, incredibly knowledgeable, and extremely attentive to all of our individual needs and desires. I'm very good at "editing", and I honestly can't think of how I would edit this trip to make it any better

Favorite "WOW" moment

"My husband & I were on a one-year delayed honeymoon. Our guide Rozanne knew that, and when our group took our gondola ride in Venice, she arranged for us to be in the boat with the musicians, and it was a truly magical experience, gliding through the canals in the dark with a full moon and full-throated, fabulous singer serenading us in Italian. Belissimo!"

Edgar

Golden, CO

Tour: 09/04/17

Overall rating: rating 5 of 5

It was everything I hoped it would be. Friendly outgoing group willing to come together share in an experience, an outstanding host, and extremely knowledgeable guides.

Favorite "WOW" moment

"Seeing Michelangelo's David."

Allison

Clifton Park, NY

Tour: 09/04/17

Overall rating: rating 3 of 5

I wasn't too impressed with the tour. I felt like the tour guide only focused on art and architecture. I was really interested in hearing about the historic and political significance throughout Italy, but that part never came. I also felt like the hotels and restaurants we went to were really disappointing.

Favorite "WOW" moment

"I appreciated the free time most"

Jill

Beverly, OH

Tour: 09/04/17

Overall rating: rating 5 of 5

The best trip I have ever taken! Everything was pre-planned and we were on schedule each day. We had down time to do whatever we wanted to do as well. Our guide was the best and always kept us safe and made sure we were all taken care of. Personally, she made sure I was always eating gluten free as requested. Our group became a close, happy family immediately and there were many laughs and tears on our last night together.

Favorite "WOW" moment

"How do you pick one? The opera singer and accordion player on the gondola ride in Venice, the incredible guides at each museum, the couple in our group that got engaged at Trevi Fountain, the relaxing bus rides, the quaint hotels, the FOOD, the Sistine Chapel, the Venice Film Festival, it was all fantastic!!!"

James

El Cajon, CA

Tour: 09/04/17

Overall rating: rating 5 of 5

I enjoyed Italy so much that I was sad to leave to go back to the daily grind.

Favorite "WOW" moment

"Seeing the Forum in Rome"

Tom

Nashville, TN

Tour: 09/04/17

Overall rating: rating 5 of 5

The tour was an outstanding success. The integration of art, history, culture, food, people was masterful. There was a great balance of structured tours with free time to explore Venice, Florence and Rome on our own. The local tour guides were terrific--informative, skilled and knowledgable. The cooking class and wine tasting added a local and personal dimension to the tour.

Favorite "WOW" moment

"A tough question. But the proposal of one tour member to his girlfriend at the Trevi fountain was probably the "wow" on the tour; the overall wow was St. Peter's Basilica and Michelangelo's David...works that, for me, suggested the hand of the Divine was at work."

Janet

Mcconnelsville, OH

Tour: 09/04/17

Overall rating: rating 5 of 5

This was my first time in Italy and it could not have been better. Our tour guide Rozanne was Awesome and we had a wonderful group of people in our tour group. The hotels was amazing and all of the sites we went to was wonderful. I would highly recommend this to everyone. I look forward to doing it again in a different country.

Favorite "WOW" moment

"There were many "wow" moments on this tour. Each city had there own "wow" moment."

Susan

Houston, TX

Tour: 09/01/17

Overall rating: rating 5 of 5

This was my first experience joining a tour group and I was very impressed that Rick Steves' Tours accommodates solo travelers. My roommate was delightful & we explored the sites, shops, restaurants, and overall culture in each place we visited. Three days in each city offered the perfect balance between group tour time and the opportunity to enjoy the cities by ourselves. The variety of local guides and their story telling enhanced the overall experience. I will definitely return to Italy!

Favorite "WOW" moment

"Two Favorites: 1) In Florence, the time spent in the Cooking School was so much fun and then to enjoy the meal we cooked/created was a bonus! 2) The time spent in the countryside (on the way from Florence to Rome) was absolutely wonderful. The hosts prepared an amazing meal paired with wine tasting and the explanation about their olive oil family business was fabulous."

Michael

Schoharie, NY

Tour: 09/01/17

Overall rating: rating 5 of 5

I have to say that the "group travel" experience was better than we had expected. Maybe we were just lucky to have a group that seemed respectful of each other and that were game to take on small challenges and enjoyed being together. I was concerned after doing all our past traveling as a couple that we would not have enough privacy, or would be annoyed with a few group members and it might negatively effect the tour. None of that happened. Our guide Martin worked to keep things light and fun.

Favorite "WOW" moment

"That's a hard one to answer, even if it were the favorite "wow" moment by city. As impressed as we were by Florence and Rome, I think it was Venice that made us go "wow". It's a city that logically and physically should not exist! It's as if people with way too much money went mad and created a fantastic waterway city of infinitely crossing alleys, streets, and canals. Although there is crumbling and it probably should have sunken away already, it still has a mystical patina of timeless beauty."

Colin

Royal Oak, MI

Tour: 09/01/17

Overall rating: rating 5 of 5

Overall, the tour was a great and the only sensible way for me to see Italy, with a great mix of structured itinerary time and unstructured personal time. Martin was entertaining and everyone in the tour group was great to travel with. The cooking class in Florence and the winery tour were great offshoots from the rest of the tour and turned out to be one of the most entertaining parts of it.

Favorite "WOW" moment

"The Sistine Chapel was every bit the amazing, historical work of genius to see in person and it was hyped to be. I especially liked the tour guide's pre-story to describe the history behind it."

Melanie

Bridgewater, CT

Tour: 09/01/17

Overall rating: rating 4 of 5

The tour was very good - a feast for the senses. Much had to be packed into it for people to feel like they're getting good value for their dollar, & it certainly was! The pace was strenuous for me & sometimes even grueling, but I didn't want to miss a minute. The heat could be draining & I was very grateful for the many clean drinking fountains & gelattos! The crowds were exhausting, & the stone streets require real care when picking out footwear to bring.

Favorite "WOW" moment

"How could it be anything but David? He took my breath away. We have all seen dozens of pictures of him in our lifetimes, but to be there in his space, experienced in 3D, was jaw-dropping & emotional. Other wows: having a 'room with a view' in our Florence hotel, with the Duomo dome visible only a couple of blocks away & lit up at night! Or the peace & beauty of our wine-tasting luncheon in Tuscany. Or the superb guitar busker outside the Duomo. Many wow moments, but David was the crowning jewel"

James

Bridgewater, CT

Tour: 09/01/17

Overall rating: rating 3 of 5

The tour was very well organized from beginning to end. The "extras" such as the lunch at the winery and the free gelato one night were terrific. However, I felt overwhelmed with the volume of information being given to us as we toured the cathedrals, museums, and other sites. It seemed that the tour was more of a crash course in history and art than it was a tour of the people and places of Italy. For me, the best part of travel is meeting and interacting with local people.

Favorite "WOW" moment

"Experiencing the immensity of the colisseum."

Kathryn

Austin, TX

Tour: 08/28/17

Overall rating: rating 5 of 5

This was my first group tour I must say my expectations were far exceeded! The guide and the itinerary are the two most important keys to a successful group tour experience and on this trip the schedule was well thought out with a nice balance free time and structured time. Our guide, Trish, was just phenomenal. Having considerable familiarity with the country, she was professional,knowledgeable, highly personable, thoughtful and just plain fun! I would do another tour with Trish in a heartbeat!

Favorite "WOW" moment

"That's a tough one as there were several. Venice, in general, was a standout, but "David" by Michelangelo, the Sistine Chapel, the winery and wine tasting in Tuscany,and the Colosseum and Roman Forum were remarkable and will be long-cherished memories. I also loved the cooking class in Florence. The talented street performers were impressive as well."

Catherine

Downingtown, PA

Tour: 08/28/17

Overall rating: rating 5 of 5

We had a wonderful time. Trish had us organized and prepared for the days events. We liked the small sized group. Our experience was one of we would definitely do another Rick Steves tour.

Favorite "WOW" moment

"I enjoyed the private speed boat ride from Venice to catch our tour bus. All the boat rides were fun. St. Clemente church near the Form was amazing. We enjoyed our tour guides in all the cities. So interesting."

Robert

Toronto, ON

Tour: 08/28/17

Overall rating: rating 5 of 5

This was my first visit to Italy, and the experience was wonderful. We were blessed with great weather, sure, hot at times, but spent lots of time outdoors in each city. The combination of Venice, Florence, and then Rome was great to showcase those parts of the country. Our stop to the winery in Umbria was simply marvelous. The bus travel was divided into segments and the stops were beautifully timed.

Favorite "WOW" moment

"This is hard...a SINGLE 'wow' moment. Can't do it because there were many so here are a very few: > first glimpse of Venice ...oh my > statue of David > the winery visit > Coliseum and forum > Basilica of San Clemente ...maybe I should just say the whole tour was my WOW moment. I love Italy now."

Tina

Austin, TX

Tour: 08/28/17

Overall rating: rating 5 of 5

I couldn't have had a better time!

Favorite "WOW" moment

"Too many to list!!!"

Strat

Charleston, SC

Tour: 08/28/17

Overall rating: rating 4 of 5

This was our first tour, so we have no prior baseline to compare. The scope and pace of the tour were as expected. We were exhausted afterward, but pleasantly so. Great to have someone else responsible for arranging transport, rooms, activities, local guides and fairly quick access to sites bypassing long ticket lines.

Favorite "WOW" moment

"Difficult to pick one as there were many spectacular moments. The museums, architecture, dining experiences, history, ruins, found art, treasures, and seeing first hand many of the world's most famous paintings and sculptures were tremendously satisfying."

Patrick

Houston, TX

Tour: 08/28/17

Overall rating: rating 4 of 5

Visited Venice Florence Rome, all of which we have been to several times. The items for touring were interesting and engaging. No thought was given about amount of walking. Italy is a fun visit so how could we not enjoy & have fun.

Favorite "WOW" moment

"Visiting the Borghsee Museum in Rome. Not on the tour but we did it on our own. In the Uffusi learning about the transition for medieval art style to the renaissance style and to see it reflected in the paintings on display. Heretofore I have avoided medieval art in favor of renaissance art but now haven understanding of the transition and how to appreciate the change."

Stephanie

Vernon Rockville, CT

Tour: 08/28/17

Overall rating: rating 5 of 5

This was by far the most amazing trip I've ever taken. We were able to see so many different things and got to be really immersed in the culture. We had amazing guides who were incredibly knowledgeable, had a great balance of scheduled time and free time, and got to eat a ton of really delicious food. I don't think there's much more you could possibly ask for!

Favorite "WOW" moment

"There was honestly a wow moment every time you turned a corner. Italy is incredible. Some of mine included my first night when I was able to get around Venice by myself without a map, getting to ride in a gondola on the Grand Canal, visiting the Vatican, and seeing the Colosseum in person. I also can't forget the cooking class! I always say I can't cook, but the meal we made may have been the best of the tour."

Donald

Walnut Creek, CA

Tour: 08/25/17

Overall rating: rating 5 of 5

It was a wonderful experience. Our first trip to Italy, but our second Rick Steves tour. The best value tour for the money spent! The tour guide was outstanding, the other tour members were overall a joy to be around, the hotels were about what we were expecting, and the included meals were terrific. We enjoyed every minute.

Favorite "WOW" moment

"The "detour" to the winery on the road to Rome was one "wow" moment. The scenery up to the winery was breathtaking, but the best part was the actual wine-tasting itself. Cecilia, I believe, is the name of the owner, and she was/is very knowledgeable about her family's business. Our biggest regret is that we didn't take advantage and buy a bottle (or two!) to take home with us. Another "wow" moment was the dinner in Florence: great food and a very gracious and convivial restaurant host."

Debra

Buffalo Grove, IL

Tour: 08/25/17

Overall rating: rating 5 of 5

It was perfect. We enjoyed every moment, from start to finish. Julian was a fantastic guide. I would take any tour that he was guiding. This was our second tour. We've enjoyed all the guides. Our local guides here were fantastic as well. However I would put Julian above the others. He has an extensive background in history, he is a great storyteller and he is able to bring together art and history. He was excellent.

Favorite "WOW" moment

"The Sistine chapel."

Emilie

Oak Ridge, TN

Tour: 08/25/17

Overall rating: rating 5 of 5

The entire tour was great. The guide was very knowledgeable and he tailored the experience to his current group. The hotels were convenient. The mix between guided activity and free time was perfect. The activity level was pleasantly strenuous.

Favorite "WOW" moment

"Too many to specify."

Anne

Tulsa, OK

Tour: 08/25/17

Overall rating: rating 5 of 5

I honestly wasn't too sure about booking a tour. I thought it might be a little too structured and stiff. But boy, was I wrong!! The whole thing was wonderful. The guide was great, the other people on the tour were fun to be around, and the split between structured and free time was perfect. All of the information that we got at the attractions the we visited together added so much depth to the trip. The tips, suggestions, and help that we got from Julian during our free time was fantastic

Favorite "WOW" moment

"I think going in to the archaeological site under San Clemente church. It's fascinating to think that there is so much history there. And the fact that buildings are built on top of buildings is stupendous."

Jim

Topeka, KS

Tour: 08/25/17

Overall rating: rating 5 of 5

This completed survey is for both Jim Bass AND Connie Mills. So we only completed this one survey. This was an unforgettable experience!! The guide, the food, the tours, the accommodations were outstanding and we came back with a lot of information we will put to good use. We are in the process of completing 6 slideshows along with a 13 page typed journal telling of our adventure. We are so happy that we signed up for this tour. We seniors survived!

Favorite "WOW" moment

"Two for sure. The San Marco Square and Basilica in Venice and of course David at the Academia in Florence. Our art background leads us to value highly the museum tours."

Darlene

Willoughby, OH

Tour: 08/25/17

Overall rating: rating 5 of 5

It was amazing! Just as I had hoped, it was the perfect blend of formal tour and alone time. The itinerary was excellent - I especially liked how each day was rated so you knew when the walking was casual, moderate or strenuous. I enjoyed how Julian shared his knowledge and love of travel with us and especially appreciated his suggestions of what to do or where to go when the day's events were over - - he was very informative but also very fun.

Favorite "WOW" moment

"Michelangelo's wood carving of Christ on the Cross with bowed head in Saint Spirito. His ability to sculpt the human body at the age of 17 - amazing. Also the small details - hiring an opera singer enhanced the gondola experience; Julian sharing historic events with us on the bus rides; playing music from Death in Venice when boating in the Venice lagoon - it simply enhanced the whole travel experience - never a dull moment!"

Jennifer

Denver, CO

Tour: 08/25/17

Overall rating: rating 5 of 5

The tour was an all-around fantastic experience. I loved having our guide, Julian, explaining everything we saw and giving it all a little meaning. He was a wealth of knowledge and an excellent resource if we had questions. There was also a great balance of guided vs. free time. I got to see everything in Italy I've dreamed of! Plus being able to skip the lines was a huge perk! The tour was an excellent value for the money. I would not have been able to see and do everything we did on my own.

Favorite "WOW" moment

"The gondola ride in Venice, seeing David for the first time in Florence, and the Colosseum in Rome was incredible."

James

The Villages, FL

Tour: 08/25/17

Overall rating: rating 5 of 5

Great time. Better than expectations

Favorite "WOW" moment

"St Peters basilica"

Ricardo

Colorado Springs, CO

Tour: 08/25/17

Overall rating: rating 5 of 5

The best guided tour that I have ever been on! Julian was an amazing guide and was extremely dedicated to our group and ensuring that all tour members were taken care of throughout the experience. I would highly recommend this tour to anyone who is thinking about visiting Italy.

Favorite "WOW" moment

"There are so many to choose from! My favorite moment was our initial walk through tour of the Roman ruins with our guide Julian and realizing the opportunity to walk in the same area that has been inhabited for over 2000 years."

Bonnie

Toronto, ON

Tour: 08/25/17

Overall rating: rating 5 of 5

Fantastic from beginning. Julian is a marvel. His love and knowledge of history made an exceptional experience even more memorable. He went above and beyond my expectations of what a tour guide would do.

Favorite "WOW" moment

"One word.....David...."

Susan

The Villages, FL

Tour: 08/25/17

Overall rating: rating 5 of 5

Far exceeded my expectations!! Our tour guide, Julian, was OUTSTANDING!!!! Additional guides were also excellent. The entire trip, from the time we initially contacted Rick Steves' company to inquire about a "possible trip to Italy" until we landed safely back in our own home, was so well organized. I can't think of a single thing that would have made it better. Except, possibly, cooler weather in Florence BUT that has nothing to do with Rick Steves.

Favorite "WOW" moment

"See the Colliseum in it's glorious wonder. The wine tasting and cooking class were two additional unexpected highlights."

Catherine

Colorado Springs, CO

Tour: 08/25/17

Overall rating: rating 5 of 5

Our tour guide Julian truly made our trip better! He had great suggestions on things to do and was amazing at planning our day! I cannot wait to do another tour in the future.

Favorite "WOW" moment

"The entire tour was a "wow" for me! The stories our guide had to share with us really seemed to take this trip to the next level for me."

Nancy

Arlington Heights, IL

Tour: 08/18/17

Overall rating: rating 5 of 5

This was my first trip to Europe (actually anywhere other than Canada or Mexico). The tour was an amazing experience. The tour provided the perfect balance between group activities and independent time for ourselves. Our group was very friendly & cohesive & the number of people was perfect.

Favorite "WOW" moment

"So many WOW moments. The gondola ride at night with the musicians in Venice, the vineyard in Umbria with the wine tasting & delicious lunch, the cooking class in Florence, the visit to Katerina's studio in Florence to witness her artistic talent, the tour of the Coliseum & Forum in Rome with Francesca, the local guide."

Penni

Winston Salem, NC

Tour: 08/18/17

Overall rating: rating 5 of 5

We had a wonderful time touring Italy. Our guide was outstanding, personable, funny, knowledgeable about everything from history to art to food & drink and a great "story teller" to boot. He was incredibly attentive to our group. I also loved the diversity of our group, coming from four countries and throughout the US. The hotels were in great locations. This tour had the perfect mix of "group" activities (orientation walks/local guides/special dinners) and time to explore on our own.

Favorite "WOW" moment

"Mastering the vaporettos in Venice and spending half a day exploring, hopping off and on and seeing the sites tourists may miss (we took the "#2" all the way around); then having drinks and dinner at our new "favorite place" on the Grand Canal."

Maria Theresa

Bellevue, WA

Tour: 08/18/17

Overall rating: rating 5 of 5

The Tour guide was knowledgeable of the area, the people in my group are marvelous.

Favorite "WOW" moment

"All of it!"

Jeffrey

Holliston, MA

Tour: 08/11/17

Overall rating: rating 5 of 5

The entire tour was very professionally run. Despite only being in Italy for 11 days, and visiting three cities, we were able to see all of the main highlights in each of the cities. Our main guide, Nina, was awesome, and she was able to keep things going in the most efficient manner (as well as being incredibly knowledgeable, understanding, and pleasant). I do like the fact that the tour emphasized free afternoons, so that we could tailor the tour to see the things that we wanted to see.

Favorite "WOW" moment

"First night in Venice overlooking the Grand Canal from the German trading house."

Berta

Trenton, FL

Tour: 08/11/17

Overall rating: rating 5 of 5

My opinion of Europe was based on what I saw on your show. So I was really excited to get there. Once I got there, it seems I stayed in shock the 10 days, the architecture, the art were unbelievable. I want to go back already.

Favorite "WOW" moment

"Finding classical music being played at the piazza around every other corner. I love classical music..then one day my granddaughter and I got lost in Rome, as we turned around one corner we saw a sign announcing a string quartet in concert along with a soprano and a tenor!!!! the arias had me crying. This is something I have only watched on PBS..."

Margaret

Elkhart, IN

Tour: 08/11/17

Overall rating: rating 5 of 5

We have done a lot of international travel but this was our first group tour. The experience completely matched what we were told to expect. The mix of guided tour and free time to follow our interests worked out very well for us. The group size was also wonderful.

Mark

Trenton, NJ

Tour: 08/11/17

Overall rating: rating 5 of 5

The tour of Venice, Florence, and Rome was nothing short of spectacular! Our guide, Nina, was outstanding and really provided us a good foundation upon which to explore these great cities. She was well informed on the history of these cities and sought to provide us with as much information as we could absorb. The local guides nicely supplemented Nina's guidance and provided even more insight into the history of the cultural, art, and architectural significance of these sites.

Favorite "WOW" moment

"I think my favorite "wow" moment of the tour was stepping out of the train station in Venice and seeing the grand canal for the first time, live in person. It was like stepping into a movie. A close second was seeing the Colosseum for the first time, in person. It seemed so strange that it was right there, just down the street from the Altare della Patria, a much more modern monument, that we were standing in front of at the moment."

Michael

Watertown, NY

Tour: 08/11/17

Overall rating: rating 5 of 5

The overall standout aspect was being able to access each main attraction without lines or waits. This expedited our ability to appreciate what we saw and truly take in the grandeur. The cost is well-worth being able to see so much with such convenience.

Favorite "WOW" moment

"For me, the "wow" moment was walking in Rome away from the Colosseum, and as we went further away, seeing it loom in the background as the traffic light and cars were in the foreground. Our guide had told us that she appreciates Rome for its genuine history, and being able to "feel" it there more than in the other cities. In this instance, I saw modern culture having its way, but not without such history still very prominent. That's where I understood her observation the most."

Patricia

Trenton, NJ

Tour: 08/11/17

Overall rating: rating 5 of 5

The tour was extremely well organized and I would highly recommend to someone who was interested in a group tour to join one of Rick Steves tours. To have all of the accommodations for the major attractions taken care of was a big plus. Additionally, by evenly splitting time between group activities and personal time was a very nice feature so that outside the group activities one had time to choose the additional activities that he/she wished to visit.

Favorite "WOW" moment

"Honestly, there were several "wow" moments from this tour that it is impossible to pick one just one."

Tim

Belmont, CA

Tour: 08/04/17

Overall rating: rating 5 of 5

I really enjoyed the group of people we met on our trip. Our guide, Anja, was great. She was very friendly, informative, and fun. the only part of the tour that I would skip would be the trip to Burano (during the Venice stay). It was really hot, and the island had very little shade.

Favorite "WOW" moment

"My favorite moments: -- Trip to the monastery in Florence to see Michelangelo's Crucifix. -- Cooking school in Florence. -- Wine tasting in Orvieto. -- Tour of San Clemente church in Rome."

Kristen

Royersford, PA

Tour: 08/04/17

Overall rating: rating 5 of 5

Absolutely incredible! Perfect balance of guided activities and time to explore on your own. Traveling as a group had many perks (such as skipping the lines at many museums/sites). The local guides were exceptional- extremely knowledgeable yet were able to present the material in a fun and engaging way. Our guide (Anja) was incredible- very friendly and knowledgeable. Loved meeting the people in our tour group. Overall, an experience I will never forget.

Favorite "WOW" moment

"I absolutely loved the local guides. Their passion, expertise, and pride were evident in the way they presented the information. Such poise!! I was hanging on every word and didn't want to tours to end. Special shout outs to Elisabetta (Venice), Corinne (Venice), and Maria Laura (Rome)."

Freddie

Sherwood, OR

Tour: 08/04/17

Overall rating: rating 5 of 5

Absolutely wonderful! Exceeded expectation!!!! Would do it again in a heartbeat!!!

Favorite "WOW" moment

"Aside from being proposed to on a moonlit night in a gondola, I would have to say bypassing all the long lines to get into all the exhibits."

Pamela

Hudsonville, MI

Tour: 08/04/17

Overall rating: rating 5 of 5

I had an incredible time on this trip. Out guide was amazing and our group got along beautifully. There was exactly the right amount of guided touring and independent exploration for me.

Favorite "WOW" moment

"I loved San Clemente church in Rome. My other favorites were the Sistine Chapel in Rome, the cooking class in Florence, and the Gondola ride in Venice."

Mary

Pittsburgh, PA

Tour: 08/04/17

Overall rating: rating 5 of 5

We had a wonderful time with our family of four. Meeting all the other families and couples across the 9 days was a real treat. The weather was hot but no one complained and enjoyed the many sights. Our guide was fabulous, as were the individual city guides!

Favorite "WOW" moment

"I don't have a single wow moment! I still feel like I'm absorbing all the wonderful moments!"

Weather

Italy / Venice

Venice Weather


Italy / Florence

Florence Weather


Italy / Rome

Rome Weather

Pre-Tour Planning

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.

Tour Hotels

In case you wish to book pre- or post-tour hotel accommodations, the contact information for the tour's first and last hotels is included in your tour confirmation email. About one month prior to the tour departure, we'll email you directions on how to get from the airport to your first tour hotel, as well as the complete list of hotels where we'll be staying while on tour.

Transportation

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 arrange to fly into Venice and out of Rome ("multicity" on flight-booking websites). Booking round-trip to one city will require a connecting flight, train trip, or additional overnight stay in Italy. Both Venice and Rome are major transportation hubs, making additional travel before or after your tour quite easy.

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.

Sightseeing on Your Own

If you arrive in Venice before your tour begins, use the Rick Steves Italy guidebook to get oriented. Ride the public transportation, try out a few words of Italian, and get over your jet lag with lots of fresh air and exercise.

Here are suggestions for sightseeing in Venice that we do not do as a group: Campanile di San Marco (bell tower), Dalmatian School chapel, Jewish Ghetto and Museum, Santa Maria della Salute and San Giorgio Maggiore churches, Peggy Guggenheim Collection, the island of Murano.

Packing

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

Special packing note: We use an audioguide system for many of our sightseeing and museum tours. If you wear a hearing aid, we strongly recommend bringing headphones that go over your ears to allow you to fully enjoy these tours.