Take advantage of additional time in Italy to explore Cinque Terre and the Italian Riviera, an area teeming with meaningful traditions surrounding wine, cuisine, and family.
Charming pastel buildings and sparkling sea views combine brilliantly with sweet and savory specialties from Monterosso al Mare, Vernazza, Manarola, and Riomaggiore. Discover the plentiful local seafood—fresh calamari, shrimp, and anchovies are always at hand (even those who are not fans of anchovies should try them here). And the hills behind the villages are a mosaic of vineyards producing local white wine. Delizioso!
More than food and drink, Cinque Terre is also a National Park and UNESCO World Heritage Site, drawing visitors to its dramatic coastal scenery and sunset panoramas.
Day +1: En route from U.S.
Wednesday, September 22, 2021
Day +2: Arrive in Milan, Italy / Sestri Levante
Thursday, September 23, 2021
After arriving in Milan Malpensa, enjoy the scenic drive to the Italian Riviera. The afternoon is at leisure to relax after the flight and stroll the fishing hamlet of Sestri Levante.
Overnight: Vis à Vis
Day +3: Sestri Levante / Cinque Terre / Sestri Levante
Friday, September 24, 2021
Following breakfast, board a local train to travel the coastline, arriving at Cinque Terre—a fairy-tale-esque area of hamlets brimming with pastel-hued homes—which exudes unparalleled charm.
Explore the lively towns and experience a culinary specialty at each stop. Start in Monterosso al Mare to sip the best lemon granita. Then, try farinata—an amazing local chickpea pie—in Vernazza. In Manarola, sample fresh pesto trofie—a twisted, spiral-shaped pasta from the Ligurian region, followed by the area's popular dessert white wine, Sciacchetrà. Cap off the delightful day at Riomaggiore with a creamy gelato.
Overnight: Vis à Vis (B,L)
Day +4: Sestri Levante / Portofino / San Fruttuoso / Sestri Levante
Saturday, September 25, 2021
Transfer to stunning Portofino, considered one of the "eight wonders of the world.” It's an incredibly well-preserved ancient fishing village in the heart of a natural park. Sail by private gozzo (a traditional wooden boat with a large sundeck) to the abbey of San Fruttuoso, and discover the sacred building dating back to the 16th century. Enjoy lunch at leisure near the abbey and then stroll lively Santa Margherita Ligure with its tiny alleys and colorful shops before returning to Sestri Levante.
Overnight: Vis à Vis (B)
Day +5: Sestri Levante / Verona / Main Program Begins
Sunday, September 26, 2021
Indulge in a final morning at leisure in Sestri Levante and then transfer to Verona. (B)
B = Breakfast, L = Lunch
This pre-tour is not escorted by an Orbridge Travel Director. Included sightseeing is accompanied by a local guide. Space is limited, so it's recommended to reserve early for best availability.
Activities are generally not very strenuous, however, we expect that guests can enjoy two hours or more of walking, are sure-footed on cobbled surfaces, can walk up and down hillsides and stairs, and can board/disembark a water vessel without assistance. Historic city centers are usually more accessible by foot than vehicle. Due to the structure of some buildings, facilities for the disabled may be limited.
Vis à Vis
September 23 - September 25
A unique hotel perched on a high promontory, the family-run Vis à Vis provides spectacular views over two bays—Baia del Silenzio and Baia delle Favole. Tastefully furnished, welcoming rooms offer comfort and relaxation. Unwind in the outdoor heated swimming pool set amid olive trees, savor a delicious cocktail and meal at the Sky Bar Zeus or other on-site dining options, and for an additional fee, indulge in spa treatments in the Giunone Wellness area.
Room Amenities: Individual climate control, partial sea view, balcony with seating, complimentary Wi-Fi, writing desk, LCD TV, phone, safe, mini bar, slippers, and en suite bathroom with premium sundries and hair dryer.
Pre-tour rate is per person based on double occupancy except where noted as Single, in U.S. dollars. Single availability limited. Airfare not included.
- 3 nights accommodations at Vis à Vis (or similar)
- 3 breakfasts and 1 lunch
- Cinque Terre card for all train transportation within the Cinque Terre
- Guided touring (by English-speaking guides) and tastings through Cinque Terre's villages
- Luxury motor coach transportation (with unlimited bottled water) for included touring
- Boat excursion to San Fruttuoso
- Entrance fee to San Fruttuoso Abbey
- Luggage porterage
- Gratuities to hotel staff, local guide, drivers for included activities and excursions, porters, and wait staff for included meals
- Airport transfers for guests arriving during the suggested times