AIA Tours: land

The Legacy of Ancient Rome

Tour Dates: October14-25, 2021 (12 days)

Tour Leader(s): Ingrid Rowland ,

For first-time as well as repeat travelers to this region of Italy, this is a splendid opportunity to share ten days learning and traveling with AIA lecturer and host Ingrid Rowland, who has been a resident of Rome for many years now, plus expert local guides and a professional tour manager to handle all of the logistics. In October the weather is typically perfect, and you will enjoy delicious food and wine as well as excellent, 4-star hotels that are perfectly located for some independent exploration.

Highlights are many and include:

  • A custom-designed, well-paced itinerary with five nights in central Rome, two nights in Amalfi overlooking the Tyrrhenian Sea, and three nights in the historic center of Naples
  • A full day exploring Rome’s ancient monuments, including the Forum and Colosseum (with special entry to the Colosseum’s upper levels), plus the House of Augustus on the Palatine Hill
  • A full day dedicated to Rome’s Capitoline Museums, with their magnificent Classical and Renaissance art; the awe-inspiring Pantheon; and the Borghese Gallery’s outstanding sculptures and paintings
  • A day trip to Tivoli for visits to Hadrian’s Villa, a 2nd-century A.D. complex; and Villa d’Este, a superb Renaissance palace
  • A visit to Vatican City, with early entry to the Vatican Museums, including the Sistine Chapel and Raphael Rooms, and the Gregorian Etruscan Museum; plus St. Peter’s Basilica, the largest church in the world
  • An excursion to Paestum, with its three magnificent, Doric Greek temples
  • A high-speed hydrofoil ride to the isle of Capri, with Tiberius’ astounding Villa Jovis
  • And visits to archaeological gems in and around Naples, including Pompeii and Herculaneum, both of which were buried (and preserved) by the eruption of Mt. Vesuvius in A.D. 79; the superb Naples Archaeological Museum; and Villa Poppea (Oplontis), an ancient villa with splendid wall paintings

Pricing per person (10 nights):

15-16 Participants Double Occupancy $7,945
10-14 Participants Double Occupancy $8,745

Single Supplement $1,895

A Private Departure is available for this tour.  Choose your travel companions, dates. Twelve days with expert local guides!

Mosaic floor at Pompeii © Lauren Cummings

The Piazza Navona in Rome, Itlay © Intel Free Press

Sculpture gallery at the Capitoline Museums, Rome, Italy © Operator

The pool (Canopus) at Hadrian's Villa © Andy Hay - Legacy of Ancient Rome: Art, Architecture & Cuisine, Travel with AIA Tours

Capua's amphitheater © LaurenCummings

Villa Poppea (Oplontis) © Kat Fulcher

Herculaneum, Itlay © Lauren Cummings

The Amalfi Coast, Itlay © Kat Fulcher

Paestum, UNESCO World Heritage Site, Italy © Oliver Bonjoch

Sunrise at Hotel Marina Riviera, Amalfi, Itlay

Hotel Marina Riviera, Amalfi, Itlay

Grand Hotel Santa Lucia, Naples, Italy

Itinerary


Thursday, October 14, 2021: Fly to Rome, Italy
Friday, October 15: Arrive in Rome | Private transfer to hotel | At leisure
Saturday, October 16: Imperial Forum | Colosseum | Palatine Hill | House of Augustus | Welcome dinner
Sunday, October 17: Capitoline Museums | Pantheon | Borghese Gallery
Monday, October 18: Tivoli: Hadrian’s Villa, Villa d’Este | Rome
Tuesday, October 19: Vatican City: Sistine Chapel, Vatican Museums, St. Peter’s Basilica | Rome: PM at leisure
Wednesday, October 20: Sperlonga | Capua | Amalfi
Thursday, October 21: Paestum | Amalfi
Friday, October 22: Capri & Villa Jovis | Lunch at a local home | Naples
Saturday, October 23: Pompeii | Naples Archaeological Museum
Sunday, October 24: Oplontis | Herculaneum | Winery lunch | Naples | Farewell dinner
Monday, October 25: Private transfer to Naples Airport | Fly home

View Detailed Itinerary

B= Breakfast • L= Lunch • D= Dinner

Thursday, October 14, 2021: Fly to Rome, Italy

Friday, October 15: Arrive in Rome | Private transfer to hotel | At leisure
Upon arrival at Rome’s Fiumicino Airport (FCO) you are met for a private transfer to our hotel in the city center. The balance of the day is free to relax and perhaps stroll around this centrally-located neighborhood. (Recommendations for dining independently will always be provided.) Overnight for five nights at the 4-star Kolbe Hotel Rome.

Saturday, October 16: Imperial Forum | Colosseum | Palatine Hill | House of Augustus | Welcome dinner
Meet our AIA lecturer, tour manager, and Rome guide at breakfast. We begin with a walk through the Roman Forum, the public center of ancient Rome where the popular assembly and senate met. Next view the splendid Arch of Constantine and enter the Colosseum, Rome’s amphitheater, the largest ever built, which accommodated 50,000 spectators. Enjoy a specially-arranged visit to the upper levels. Savor a traditional Italian lunch just a few steps from the Colosseum, and then visit the Palatine Hill, centermost of the Seven Hills of Rome, standing above the Roman Forum on one side and the Circus Maximus on the other. From the time of Augustus, Rome’s first Emperor, imperial palaces were built here. Visit the House of Augustus, which reopened in 2008 after extensive restoration; its colorful wall paintings and mosaic floors are stunning. Return to our hotel and gather this evening for a welcome dinner hosted by our AIA lecturer. (B,L,D)

Sunday, October 17: Capitoline Museums | Pantheon | Borghese Gallery
Ascend the stairs of the Piazza del Campidoglio, designed by Michelangelo, overlooking the extensive ruins of the Roman Forum. Enter the Capitoline Museums, the world’s oldest public museums, and view magnificent and iconic Classical sculptures as well as paintings by Caravaggio, Rubens, Titian, Van Dyck, and other masters. After lunch, visit the awe-inspiring Pantheon, built in the 2nd century A.D. by Emperor Hadrian as a temple to all the gods. It remains the largest unreinforced concrete dome ever built and a testament to ancient Roman engineering. We end our afternoon at the Borghese Gallery, housed in a splendid, 17th-century villa with an exceptional art collection, including outstanding sculptures by Canova and Bernini plus paintings by Titian, Raphael, and Caravaggio. The evening is at leisure, or you may choose to join (at additional cost) an optional wine tasting with dinner. (B,L) (D with optional wine tasting)

Monday, October 18: Tivoli: Hadrian’s Villa, Villa d’Este | Rome
Visit Tivoli, a town hosting some of Italy’s top cultural treasures, less than one hour’s drive from Rome. Begin at the World Heritage site of Hadrian’s Villa, a 2nd-century A.D. complex of buildings featuring marvelous pools, baths, fountains, gardens, theaters, and the Imperial Palace. After lunch in Tivoli’s charming town center, continue on to another World Heritage site, the magnificent Villa d’Este, a Renaissance palace with an elaborate garden and dozens of fountains. Return to Rome for an evening at leisure. (B,L)

Tuesday, October 19: Vatican City: Sistine Chapel, Vatican Museums, St. Peter’s Basilica | Rome: PM at leisure
After an early breakfast at our hotel we drive to the Vatican for an 8am entry, before the usual crowds, and enter the ornate Raphael Rooms and Michelangelo’s masterpiece, the Sistine Chapel. We then visit highlights of the Pio-Clementino Museum, featuring Greek and Roman sculpture, and/or of the Gregorian Etruscan Museum. Next we enter the sumptuously decorated St. Peter’s Basilica, the largest church in the world, where we see Michelangelo’s wonderful Pietà, the gigantic bronze canopy by Bernini, and the tombs of the Popes. After lunch nearby, the balance of the day is at leisure: you may choose to return to St. Peter’s to explore more on your own, or to be driven back to our hotel for independent pursuits in Rome. (B,L)

Wednesday, October 20: Sperlonga | Capua | Amalfi
Drive south to the cave of Emperor Tiberius at Sperlonga and the local museum with magnificent sculptures recounting the deeds of Odysseus that were carved by the same sculptors who produced the Laocoön and His Sons, which we saw in the Vatican Museums. Next stop is Capua to see the Flavian amphitheater, second largest in the world, and renowned because the gladiator and slave rebel Spartacus trained here. Visit briefly the adjacent, two-room Gladiator Museum. Continue driving to our lovely hotel right by the sea in Amalfi. Settle in and then gather for dinner at a local restaurant. Overnight for two nights at the 4-star Hotel Marina Riviera. (B,L,D)

Thursday, October 21: Paestum | Amalfi
Drive along the Mediterranean coast to the World Heritage site of Paestum, the most impressive Greek site in all of mainland Italy. Founded in the 7th century B.C., Paestum has three magnificent and massive Doric Greek temples. Also visit the onsite museum with artifacts and frescoes from nearby tombs such as the famous Tomb of the Diver. After lunch, return to our hotel and enjoy the balance of the day at leisure in Amalfi. (B,L)

Friday, October 22: Capri & Villa Jovis | Lunch at a local home | Naples
This morning take a high-speed hydrofoil from Amalfi to the fabled island of Capri, the favorite place of Emperor Tiberius. Consider exploring the largest and most opulent of Tiberius’ twelve villas, Villa Jovis, a secluded spot of legendary debauchery. Completed in A.D. 27, the entire complex rises on many terraces atop Capri’s second highest peak, commanding lovely vistas. Villa Jovis is an astounding achievement of ancient Roman architecture and engineering. After lunch at the home of a Caprese family, take a high-speed hydrofoil to Naples. Check-in to our hotel and freshen up before we gather for dinner. Overnight for three nights at the 4-star Grand Hotel Oriente. (B,L,D)

Saturday, October 23: Pompeii | Naples Archaeological Museum
Explore Pompeii, one the world’s most fascinating archaeological sites. In A.D. 79, the catastrophic eruption of Mount Vesuvius buried and thus preserved the ancient city under tons of ash, pumice, and lapilli. Excavations have revealed life in this prosperous ancient Roman city beneath lofty Mount Vesuvius. Highlights may include the House of the Faun, Villa of the Mysteries, the brothel, Garden of Fugitives, and more. Enjoy acclaimed Napoli pizza for lunch. Then visit the Naples Archaeological Museum with one of the world’s finest collections of Greco-Roman art and artifacts. The Farnese Collection includes celebrated bronze and marble statues, as well as ancient paintings and important artifacts from Pompeii and Herculaneum (which we visit tomorrow). Return to our hotel for an evening at leisure in Naples. (B,L)

Sunday, October 24:  Oplontis | Herculaneum | Winery lunch | Naples | Farewell dinner
Begin our day with a visit to Villa Poppea (Oplontis), an ancient villa with superb wall paintings that was probably owned by Emperor Nero. Next we discover Herculaneum, where excavations reveal the customs, habits, and art of an ancient holiday resort for wealthy Romans. Among the most important buildings are the theater, the basilica adorned with marble and paintings, the spa with gym, and the House of Argos. Drive to a winery on the slope of Mt. Vesuvius, where we enjoy a wine tasting with lunch. Return to our hotel in Naples for some time to relax or pack for tomorrow’s departure before we gather this evening for our farewell dinner. (B,L,D)

Monday, October 25:  Private transfer to Naples Airport | Fly home
You are met at the hotel for a private transfer to Naples International Airport (NAP). (B)

 


For reservations or questions, please email us at aia@studytours.org (and include your full name) or call us toll-free at (800) 748-6262 (toll: 603-756-2884).

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