Gems of Europe

Gems of Europe

  • 12 Days / 10 Nights
  • CODE: REF
  • From: $2000

Our Gems of Europe vacation takes in many of the showpieces of the Old World in one memorable itinerary. Discover the continent’s historical cities and wonders, from the elegant boulevards and sights of Paris to the buzz of historic London, the captivating charms of Lucerne and the glories of Florence and Rome. Our sightseeing programs take you deep into the heart of each city, showcasing the main sights while also letting you experience their culture, cuisine and way of life.

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Itinerary at a glance:

DAY 1
USA – London, England
DAY 2
Arrive in London
DAY 3
London
DAY 4
London – Eurostar train - Paris, France
DAY 5
Paris
DAY 6
Paris – Lucerne , Switzerland
DAY 7
Lucerne – Milan, Italy
DAY 8
Milan – Verona – Venice
DAY 9
Venice – Montecatini
DAY 10
Montecatini – Pisa – Florence – Rome
DAY 11
Rome
DAY 12
Rome – USA

Make this trip a private tour

Your customized trip will draw on the expertise of our travel consultants, each of whom has a deep knowledge of the places you wish to explore.

London (2 nts) Paris (2 nts) Lucerne (1 nt) Milan (1 nt) VeronaVenice (1 nt) Montecatini (1 nt) PisaFlorenceRome (2 nts)
day
1

USA – London, England

Relax on your international flight to London as you start your journey to the Old World.


day
2

Arrive in London

On arrival in London, meet your Ritz Tours representative at the airport and enjoy a comfortable transfer to the city. Along the way, stop by Windsor Castle*, the oldest occupied castle in the world and Queen Elizabeth II’s favorite weekend retreat. See inside this magnificent castle in historical Windsor town and learn how it’s been a royal residence for more than 900 years before returning to London for your two-night stay.


Included: Lunch

accomodation:

day
3

London

Following breakfast, start your sightseeing at Her Majesty’s Royal Palace and Fortress, the Tower of London*. Learn its storied history and legends as you explore this eerie castle, and hear how Anne Boleyn and Catherine Howard, two of Henry VIII’s six wives, were executed here. View the tower’s priceless Crown Jewels, whose crowns, orbs and jewels are invested with the monarch’s power. Afterward, absorb the main sights on a panoramic tour, passing Trafalgar Square, Big Ben and Parliament, and pause for photos at Buckingham Palace and Westminster Abbey. Enjoy the rest of the day free to explore as you wish.


Included: Breakfast at hotel

accomodation:

day
4

London – Eurostar train - Paris, France

Today, depart on the high-speed Eurostar train to Paris. Thrill as you arrive in the “City of Lights,” whose landmarks inspire genuine awe. Upon arrival, explore at your own pace, perhaps relaxing at a café or strolling the handsome boulevards and streets. Later today, relax on an optional scenic River Seine Cruise, feasting your eyes on Notre Dame Cathedral and other landmarks from the water.


Included: Breakfast at hotel

day
5

Paris

This morning, enjoy a guided visit to the Palace of Versailles*, the gilded residence of France’s kings from 1682 to 1789. Marvel at the formal gardens and majestic palace and then return to Paris to visit the peerless Louvre Museum*, home to many of the world’s greatest artworks. Behold Leonardo da Vinci’s playfully smiling Mona Lisa and the Venus de Milo as you explore the vast collections. After a panoramic drive around top Paris landmarks such as the Place de la Concord, Champs-Elysées and Arc de Triomphe, the Opera House, and the city’s most recognizable symbol, the Eiffel Tower. This afternoon, enjoy free time to explore Paris on your own, perhaps shopping for souvenirs or just relaxing at its sidewalk cafes. Enjoying a delicious French Cuisine Dinner this evening.


Included: Breakfast at hotel, Dinner

accomodation:

day
6

Paris – Lucerne , Switzerland

Leaving Paris, travel by coach to Lucerne in Switzerland. Tucked between Lake Lucerne and snow-tipped mountains, this lovely city encapsulates Switzerland’s reputation as “the playground of Europe.” If time allows, enjoy a short tour to its postcard-pretty Chapel Bridge. Built in 1333 across the Reuss River, this covered footbridge is the oldest in Europe and begs to be captured on camera. Admire the bridge and Lake Lucerne and then see another of Lucerne’s highlights — the Lion Monument. A memorial to the Swiss soldiers who died defending the French king, Louis XVI, in Paris in 1792, this stone sculpture by Bertel Thorvaldsen was described by Mark Twain as the “most mournful and moving piece of stone in the world.”


Included: Breakfast at hotel, Dinner at hotel

accomodation:

Astoria Hotel or Similar - ★★★★

day
7

Lucerne – Milan, Italy

This morning, admire Lucerne’s Chapel Bridge and Lion Monument if time didn’t allow visits yesterday, and perhaps join our optional excursion to Mt. Stanserhorn, traveling up the 6,227-foot mountain by the world’s first 360-degree double-deck open-top cable car to enjoy the breathtaking views from its summit. Later, leave Lucerne by coach and travel to Milan, Italy’s second-biggest city and known as the world’s “fashion capital.”


Included: Breakfast at hotel, Dinner at hotel

day
8

Milan – Verona – Venice

Glamorous Milan combines contemporary swagger with a rich history. Today, dive into this bustling city that embodies Italy’s passions for fashion, food and design. See magnificent Milan Cathedral and La Scala Opera House, where greats including Maria Callas and Luciano Pavarotti once performed. View the statue of Leonardo da Vinci fronting the theatre, and then travel to Verona, the fictional setting for Shakespeare’s Romeo and Juliet. Admire its highlights on an orientation guided tour and see Juliet’s House, where a stone balcony celebrates the great love story. Later, leave Verona and stay overnight in the provincial town of Padova.


Included: Breakfast at hotel, Dinner at hotel

accomodation:

day
9

Venice – Montecatini

Today brings a trip to magical Venice, the hub of trade between Europe and the Orient in medieval times. Walk across the St. Mark’s Square, one of the most beautiful squares in the world to , visit St. Mark’s Basilica located in the heart of the city. Fusing Gothic, Byzantine, Romanesque and Renaissance architecture and dripping with mosaics, gold and marble, the Basilica will fill you with awe and admiration. Lastly, take photos of the jewel-like Bridge of Sighs as you hear how its name originates from the wistful sighs of prisoners who crossed it on their way to torture, execution or incarceration. After an optional gondola ride on the Grand Canal, depart Venice this afternoon for an overnight stay in the lovely spa town of Montecatini.


Included: Breakfast at hotel, Dinner at hotel

day
10

Montecatini – Pisa – Florence – Rome

Today’s destination is Pisa, where you’ll marvel at the remarkable Leaning Tower of Pisa. After taking in the tower, continue by coach to Tuscany’s graceful capital, Florence. Considered the “Cradle of the Renaissance”, Florence was home to Renaissance luminaries including Dante, Michelangelo and Galileo. Take a walking tour of its signature sights, including the sumptuous red-tile Duomo, Baptistery, Signoria Square and St. Croce Basilica. Later, leave Florence for Rome.


Included: Breakfast at hotel

day
11

Rome

This morning, arrive in Rome, a UNESCO World Heritage site and sightseer’s paradise. Tour the best of Italy’s glorious capital, dubbed the “Eternal City”. See the Vatican City, the papal residence and spiritual center for the world’s 1.2 billion Roman Catholics; stroll around St. Peter’s Basilica and Square, followed by an optional visit to the Vatican Museums to witness Michelangelo’s sublime Sistine Chapel ceiling fresco. Later photo stop at the ancient Colosseum as you hear of the grisly gladiatorial contests once staged here and witness other sights such as the Roman Forum, Constantine’s Triumphal Arch, the Spanish Steps and Trevi Fountain. The rest of the afternoon is yours to enjoy as you wish and, this evening, sit down to a Farewell Dinner with your fellow travelers.


Included: Breakfast at hotel, Dinner

day
12

Rome – USA

Savor the memories of your odyssey around Europe as you take your return flight to the USA..


Included: Breakfast at hotel

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What's included

10 Nights hotel accommodation at deluxe 4-star hotels

10 hotel breakfasts, 1 restaurant lunch, 6 dinners at hotels or local restaurants including a French Cuisine Dinner in Paris and a Farewell Dinner in Rome

Professional English-speaking Tour Director throughout the trip

Sightseeing with specialist local guides in London, Paris, Milan, Verona, Venice, Florence & Rome

Admission fees for sightseeing attractions as denoted by an asterisk* in tour itinerary:

  1. London – Tower of London, Windsor Castle
  2. Paris – Palace of Versailles, Louvre Museum

Private deluxe air-conditioned coach with the professional and experienced driver

Group airport transfers on arrival in London and on departure in Rome for Land+Air package guests

Comfortable Euro Star Train ride from London - Paris

Audio headsets throughout the trip

London: The Tower Hotel or similar

★ ★ ★ ★

Nestled along the River Thames, The Tower Hotel, London, brings you into the midst of some of London’s most iconic landmarks and famous locations, including the Tower of London, the Shard and more.

Paris: Renaissance Paris La Defense Hotel or Similar

★ ★ ★ ★

Make yourself at home in our spacious, contemporary hotel rooms and suites featuring plush bedding, soundproof windows, high-speed Wi-Fi and an array of entertainment options. Enjoy all-day dining on delicious French cuisine or sip wine with friends on the outdoor terrace at La Brasserie Restaurant & Bar. Our accessible location makes it easy for you to explore Paris; the shopping mall Les Quatre Temps, Grande Arche de la Defense and the Champs Elysées are just moments away.

Lucerne: Astoria Hotel or Similar

★ ★ ★ ★

Lucerne: Switzerland is at its most beautiful here in the idyllic and urban heart that is Central Switzerland. Lake Lucerne with its crystal clear water, the imposing mountains, the fresh air, the fascinating architecture, art, culture and modern savoir-vivre are all charmingly brought together here to set the rhythm of life. You'll find the four-star Hotel Astoria right in the middle of it all, a sight to behold full of natural light. 

Milan: Crowne Plaza Milan-Linate or Similar

★ ★ ★ ★

The Crowne Plaza Milan Linate is located near Milan Linate International Airport and just 7 Km far from Milan city centre. Piazza Duomo, the shopping area of Via Montenapoleone is also easy reachable by public transport. The Crowne Plaza Milan Linate hotel rooms provided with internet Wi-Fi access and Sat-TV. The hotel fitness centre and the sauna are at guests' disposal.

Venice: Crowne Plaza Padova or Similar

★ ★ ★ ★

Stylish Padova hotel with a refined restaurant, complimentary Wi-Fi and extensive meeting facilities. At this hotel you can enjoy: A sauna and mini-gym, Free Wi-Fi throughout the hotel, Free parking, Our elegant, air-conditioned rooms all have desks and LCD TVs. 

Montecatini: Grand Hotel Francia & Quirinale or similar

★ ★ ★ ★

Francia & Quirinale Hotel sits in a prestigious yet quiet area of downtown Montecatini Terme, within walking distance from the town’s thermal springs and its beautiful park.

Rome: Holiday Inn Rome Eur Parco dei Medici or Similar

★ ★ ★ ★

The Holiday Inn® Rome Eur Parco Dei Medici in Rome that combines the high standards of the famous brand with the hotel s elegant style. Leonardo da Vinci–Fiumicino Airport is a short shuttle ride away, with the hotel scheduled shuttle bus(with fees).  Explore Rome's sights, such as the Trevi Fountain, Spanish Steps and Pantheon, all-around 30 minutes by public transport from the hotel. Shopping centres and a multiplex cinema are nearby.

Why not check out the optional excursions available on your tour and pre-book? Booking them in advance will save you money and hassle. Optional tours must be purchased 7 days prior to departure.
Special exchange rate: When you pre-book optional excursions in US Dollars you enjoy a discounted exchange rate, saving you money. Online prices are in USD for our European tours; on-site prices will be in Euros (EUR) or British Pounds (GBP) in the UK. 
Easy budgeting: Pre-booking your excursions makes budgeting for your vacation easy. You’ll find it easier to plan your spending money and you’ll need less cash during your vacation.

 

Online Purchase Window closes 7 days prior to departure 

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Gems of Europe (REF)

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