Exclusive Best of Rome
Exclusive Best of Rome Shore Tour
Escape the crowded cruise line tours on this exclusive Best of Rome shore excursion. With a tour size of no more than 35 guests (and often less) you will enjoy a very personalized experience that differs greatly from the 50-plus-person tours offered by the cruise lines. For groups of over 9 guests, headsets will be provided.
Your Rome tour begins when you are met at the cruise terminal. Here you will climb aboard your air-conditioned vehicle for the 80-minute drive to Rome. As you drive from the coast into the city, you will watch as the flat coastal area disappears and you gradually climb up through farms and orchards to reach the City of Seven Hills. When you arrive in Rome, you will first see Capitoline Hill, located between the Forum and the Campus Martius. Capitoline Hill is one of the seven famous hills of Rome. It was the citadel of the earliest Romans, and contains several ancient ground-level ruins, Medieval and Renaissance palaces, and the Victor Emanuel Monument. Michelangelo designed this significant urban plan.
Next you will visit the symbol of the Eternal City, the Roman Colosseum, where you will have time and an included ticket to tour inside this masterpiece of classical architecture. The Colosseum is one of the most recognized monuments of ancient Rome, where gladiators, Christians and wild beasts once battled to the death in front of 50,000 spectators. You will have approximately 40 minutes of free time to sightsee. Nearby, the imposing triumphal Arch of Titus was erected in A.D. 81 by the Emperor Domitian in honor of the victories in battle of his brother and father in Judea.
Departing the Colosseum area, you will take a walk to the Palatine Hill, Circus Maximus, and the Victor Emanuel monument on your way to the old section of Rome, where you will begin a walking tour. Walking from your transportation, you will walk through the narrow, twisting streets to the Trevi Fountain, named after the area of Rome where it is found. The fountain stands 85 feet high, 65 feet wide, and is the largest Baroque fountain in the city. A traditional legend holds that if visitors throw a coin with one's right hand over one's left shoulder into the Trevi Fountain, they are ensured a return to Rome. You will also visit the Pantheon, an excellent example of ancient Roman architecture. It was built in A.D. 126 as a temple to all the gods of Ancient Rome. If time permits, you will also see Navano and Farnese Squares.
Time will be taken for a quick lunch on your own.
Your driver will next drive you to the world-famous Vatican City. Along the way you will see the Castel of the Angels and Bernini's Bridge of the Angels. At St. Peter's Square, you will have approximately 45 minutes of free time to visit St. Peter's Square, St. Peter's Basilica (the largest church in the world), or browse for souvenirs. Since St. Peter's is extremely popular, please be aware that you may encounter lines to enter the Basilica.
After your visit to St. Peters, you will be driven back to your ship pier.
Please Note: Given the traffic in Rome, the itinerary may vary according to local conditions. Crowds are to be expected at all sites and lines for the Colosseum and St. Peter's Basilica may exceed over one hour to enter. If fewer than nine people are on your tour, you will travel in a small vehicle with excellent access to all sights, and a guide who is also your driver will lead your tour. If more than nine people are on your tour, headsets will be provided, and you will have a driver to Rome, where you will meet your guide for the guided portion of the tour. On select dates, the Italian government will allow free entrance into the Colosseum, which will cause larger than normal crowds. Should the wait time for the entrance into the Colosseum be too long, guests will be given an outside tour of the Colosseum along with additional free time to visit St. Peter's Basilica.