Day 1 : VENICEYou’ll board our ship at 6 p.m. After comfortably settling into your cabins, we’ll introduce our crew at a welcome cocktail. Enjoy a free evening to explore the city on your own.
Day 2 : VENICEThis morning, we offer two optional excursions:
CLASSIC: Guided tour of Doge’s Palace and Saint Mark’s Square.
You’ll discover Saint Mark’s Square and its famous basilica (exteriors) and take a tour inside Doge’s Palace, the official residence of Venetian dukes and the seat of the government until 1797. The current palace dates back to the 14th century and is considered by many to be the most beautiful in the world. A trek to the top of the Golden Staircase brings you to massive works by Tintoretto and Veronese and gives you access to the antechambers and a magnificent view from the balcony.
DISCOVERY: Following the footsteps of Casanova in Venice to Doge’s Palace and its hidden passageways.
Giacomo Girolamo Casanova was born in Venice in 1725. Both his parents were actors, and he was the first of six children in the family. He entered the University of Padua at age twelve and graduated five years later with a degree in law. Over his lifetime, he was a lawyer, soldier, violinist, courtier, economist, philosopher, writer, and of course, a lover who got into sexual escapades resembling operatic plots. Your guide will fill you in on all the details of his titillating life, including a darker period where he was imprisoned in Doge’s Palace and his daring escape. Even today, Casanova and his lusty reputation remains a legend in itself. At the end of our tour, you can return to the boat at your own pace.
This afternoon, join us on an optional excursion for both packages: The Venetian Lagoon and its islands. The Murano glassmakers retreated to the island of Murano to help keep their production techniques a secret. Burano instills a feeling of quiet and meditation as you walk along its docks lined with colorful homes. One of the most sought-out items on the island is handwoven lace that dates back to before the exploration of the New World.
Enjoy a free evening to explore Venice on your own.
Day 3 : VENICE - CHIOGGIA - Vicenza - PORTO VIRO - ROVIGOWe’ll cruise to Chioggia, the departure point for an optional excursion for both packages: A guided tour of Vicenza. Vicenza is the epitome of gorgeous Italian landscapes, art, food, and wine. The most beautiful buildings in the city are found around the Piazza dei Signori. Here, you can take in the gorgeous facade of the Teatro Olimpico, which opened in 1585 and contains the oldest standing stage set still in existence. The theater was the final design by Italian Renaissance architect Andrea Palladio and is part of the sites listed
as UNESCO World Heritage Sites in the city. As you enjoy your tour, the ship will cruise to Porto Viro(2).
For those who decided not to join us on the excursion, you will be transferred from Chioggia to Porto Viro(2).
Enjoy some free time in Chioggia.
We’ll return on board in Porto Viro and spend the afternoon cruising towards Rovigo.
Day 4 : ROVIGO - TORRETTA - Verona - VALDAROWe’ll spend the morning cruising to Torretta.
In the afternoon, we offer two optional excursions:
CLASSIC: Visit Verona and its amphitheater or the Giusti Gardens. We’ll leave by coach from Torretta and head to Verona, the “City of Love” made famous by Shakespeare’s legendary tragedy Romeo and Juliet. We’ll get to see the outside of Juliet’s House (Casa di Giulietta) and the balcony where she stood when Romeo declared his love. Verona encapsulates 2,000 years of history from an architectural, urban,
and artistic point of view. The amphitheater, the historic symbol of the city, is a fantastic example of its longevity and influence. (If the amphitheater is closed and in July and August, we’ll visit the magnificent Giusti Gardens.)
DISCOVERY: Take a bike tour of Verona and visit the Giusti Gardens. You’ll be transfered by coach from Torretta to Verona, where numerous possibilities to explore the city await you. Often overshadowed by neighboring Venice, Verona possesses an impressive artistic heritage and many cultural diversions. What better way to explore the city than on two wheels? Glide along its streets and lanes lined with unique houses and romantic hideaways. You’ll then visit the Giusti Gardens, one of the city’s marvels. This magnificent Italian garden contains age-old trees, gargoyles, fountains, and grottoes with ancient inscriptions. After our tour, we’ll return on board in Valdaro.
Day 5 : VALDARO - MANTUAOur ship will begin to cruise early in the morning to Mantua.
Join us on an optional excursion for both packages: A guided tour of Mantua, where the House of Gonzaga ruled for almost 400 years. Although Mantua is not well known, it is one of the most artistically rich and romantic cities in northern Italy. We’ll visit the Palazzo Ducale di Mantova (Ducal Palace - closed on Mondays) which overlooks the city center. Built between the 14th and the 17th centuries by the noble House of Gonzaga, the property comprises many buildings such as the Castel di San Giorgio which was designed as a defensive structure aimed at protecting the heart of the town, and subsequently converted into the main residence of the Gonzaga family. We’ll also visit the Camera degli Sposi (“bridal chamber”), known for its frescoes executed by Andrea Mantegna as a celebration of the Gonzaga family. We’ll then reach the historic center of the city where you’ll visit the Rotonda di San Lorenzo and the Basilica of Sant’Andrea.
You’re free to do as you please in the afternoon.
Or enjoy an optional tour of the Ferrari Museum in Modena (not included in packages). Car lovers will not want to miss this chance! The museum focuses on the life and work of Enzo Ferrari, founder of the Ferrari sports car brand. Their website says it best: “The Museo Enzo Ferrari is more than just a museum. It is a spectacular immersive experience that combines a dizzying mix of unique ingredients. Visitors not only get to admire the stunning cars displayed in the futuristic 2,500 square metre main pavilion but are also treated
to a spectacular audio-visual show to tell the magical story of Enzo Ferrari’s 90 years.”
Day 6 : MANTUA - Cremona - ParmaJoin us for an optional excursion to Cremona and Parma (including lunch). A stroll through the historical center of Cremona reveals its hidden artistic and architectural treasures. Within the superb medieval square, we’ll take in the immensity of the duomo and tower before visiting a violin-maker’s workshop. We’ll then head to Polesine Parmense and stop at Fratelli Spigaroli(3) to visit the cellars where they cure the famous Culatello ham and Parmigiana cheese. In the afternoon, we’ll go to Parma—located in the confines of the Lombardy and Emilie-Romagna Regions—to indulge in art, music history, and food! Parma is in one of Italy’s most emblematic areas, and its castles and ancient churches inspire dreams of yesteryear. We’ll visit the pink-marble Baptistery, which contains some amazing frescoes representing the life of Christ. The frescoes on the dome of the cathedral are also exceptional.
Tonight is our festive gala evening.
Day 7 : MANTUA - VeniceEnjoy breakfast on board this morning before disembarking at 9:00 a.m. Coach transfer from Mantua to Venice. End of our services