Our Italy tours are among our most popular and it's no surprise as to why. This European country with a long Mediterranean coastline has left a powerful mark on western culture and cuisine. As a result, a holiday to Italy is sure to be incredibly memorable. From its spectacular ancient remains to its mosaic and gold leaf-filled churches, and from its delicious regional cuisine to its glorious weather, there's something for every traveller.
Where to begin?
Among our portfolio, you will find our best-selling tours such as Classical Sicily and Pompeii, Herculaneum & Classical Campania - always a great place to start if you're an Italy holiday first-timer.
Discover the highlights
Many people travel on holiday to Italy to visit the iconic archaeological sites - and there are plenty to see. With Andante, you don't only visit these hotspots, you explore them in depth alongside expert Guide Lecturers.
Discover Rome's Colosseum, wander among the UNESCO-listed Valley of the Temples in Agrigento, take a day's tour of Pompeii and see how citizens of this ill-fated town lived their daily lives - the choice is yours. We can also take you to the Sassi area of Matera, a complex of cave dwellings carved into the mountainside; you can gaze in awe at Ravenna's unbeatable mosaics or you can even hop aboard a northern Italy cruise that stops in both Venice and Verona.
Its capital, Rome, is home to the Vatican as well as landmark art and ancient ruins. Other major cities include Florence, with Renaissance masterpieces such as Michelangelo’s "David" and Brunelleschi's Duomo; Venice, the city of canals; and Milan, Italy’s fashion capital.
Despite Italy’s archaeological record stretching back tens of thousands of years, Italian history starts with the Etruscans, an ancient civilisation that grew between the Arno and Tiber rivers. The Etruscans were replaced by the Romans in the 3rd century BCE, which dominated the Mediterranean world with an empire stretching from India to Scotland by the 2nd century CE.
The Roman Empire was unstable, often due to the unwillingness of conquered peoples to stay conquered coupled with power struggles between competing Roman political factions, military leaders, families, ethnic groups, and religions. The Roman Empire fell in the 5th century CE after a succession of barbarian invasions through which Huns, Lombards, Ostrogoths, and Franks—mostly previous subjects of Rome—seized portions of Italy.
Although the Normans were successful in establishing a modest empire in southern Italy and Sicily in the 11th century, rule devolved to the level of the city-state. Some of these city states flourished during the Renaissance era. This time period saw the rise of intellectual, artistic, and technological advances. Yet it was also plagued by savage warfare between states loyal to the pope and those loyal to the Roman Empire.
Italy has so much to offer – spectacular cities, ancient ruins, wonderful museums, soaring mountains, great beaches, and beautiful natural scenery. It is not to be missed.
24 June 2023