Rome, Florence & Venice Carnival

10 days Special Event
Just before Lent, the city nicknamed La Serenissima (most serene) opens up into a wild world of luxury, indulgence and merriment—during the city’s annual Carnival celebration. You’ll begin your Italian adventure in Renaissance Florence and Eternal Rome before donning a traditional masquerade mask and taking to the Venetian streets with thousands of revelers from near and far.

Let us handle the details

Expert Tour Director

      Local       cuisine

Handpicked hotels

Sightseeing with local guides

Private transportation

Personalized flight options

Tour group size: 18 - 35 travelers

Tour pace: You will walk for about 2 hours daily across mostly flat terrain, including cobblestone streets, with some hills and stairs.

Let us handle the details

Expert Tour Director

      Local       cuisine

Handpicked hotels

Sightseeing with local guides

Private transportation

Personalized flight options

Your tour includes

  • 8 nights in handpicked hotels

  • Breakfast daily, 3 three-course dinners with beer or wine

  • Multilingual Tour Director

  • Private deluxe motor coach

  • Guided sightseeing and select entrance fees

Overnight Flight 1 night

Day 1: Travel day

Board your overnight flight to Rome today.

Rome 3 nights Hotel info

Day 2: Arrival in Rome

  Included meals: Dinner

Welcome to Italy! Transfer to your hotel and get settled in. Later, meet your group at tonight’s welcome dinner.

Day 3: Sightseeing tour of Rome

  Included meals: Breakfast

Follow in the footsteps of the ancient Romans on a guided tour of the Eternal City. 

• Pass by Trajan’s Column and Piazza Venezia, the city’s central hub 

• Stop at the ruins of the ancient Roman Forum, once the setting of parades, elections and trials

• Soak up over 2,000 years of history in Imperial Rome, viewing the Arch of Constantine, the Arch of Titus and the Temple of Venus and Roma

• Enter the Colosseum, the largest amphitheater of the Roman Empire, and take time to explore on your own

Day 4: Free day in Rome

  Included meals: Breakfast

Spend a free day in Rome or add excursions.

Optional Excursion - Iconic Sights: Vatican City $99pp* Details

This guided tour takes you inside the world’s smallest state, Vatican City. Upon arrival, you’ll first visit the Vatican Museums, which recently celebrated a 500-year anniversary and hold many of the world’s most important Classical- and Renaissance-era sculptures. Next, visit the Sistine Chapel, where you’ll gaze on what is perhaps Michelangelo’s greatest masterpiece. Finally, you’ll visit the enormous St. Peter’s Basilica, the epicenter of the Roman Catholic faith. The artists whose efforts have contributed to its glory are some of the best Italy has ever known, including Bramante, Peruzzi, Raphael and Michelangelo. Masterpieces await at every turn, from Bernini’s magnificent bronze canopy to Michelangelo’s Pietà. Please note: This excursion is not available on Sundays. Backpacks are not allowed in the Vatican and a dress code of no shorts or sleeveless shirts is enforced.

Must be booked 70 days before departure

Optional Excursion - Dinner with Tenors $79pp* Details

End your day with an elegant four-course dinner at one of our favorite Roman restaurants. While you dine, you’ll be treated to some of opera’s best-loved arias…and you might even join the singers on stage. Don’t miss this lighthearted evening of food and fun! Please note: This excursion is seasonal and runs from February through November.

Save $10 when you book this excursion up to 3 days before your tour departs. (On-tour price: $89)

Florence 2 nights Hotel info

Day 5: Transfer to Florence

  Included meals: Breakfast, Dinner

Cross through the Apennine Mountains as you make your way to Florence, home of the Renaissance. Then, get to know the city on a guided sightseeing tour. 

• Visit the legendary Florence Cathedral, known as the Duomo 

• Pass Giotto’s Campanile, a masterpiece of Gothic architecture

• Walk past Piazza della Repubblica to the medieval Ponte Vecchio

• Stroll along the Arno River and through the courtyard of the Uffizi Gallery to Piazza della Signoria, center of Florentine life

Day 6: Free day in Florence

  Included meals: Breakfast

Enjoy a full free day to explore Florence or add an excursion.

Optional Excursion - Siena & San Gimignano: Tuscan Hilltowns $109pp* Details

Discover the essence of Tuscany on a full-day excursion. In Siena, a local guide introduces you to the town and its black-and-white marble duomo, where you’ll find brilliantly colored 16th-century frescoes in the Piccolomini Library. You’ll have some free time to explore the Campo, the square that serves as the center of civic life in Siena. Then, journey through the countryside to the town of San Gimignano, where you’ll have some free time to explore the city’s medieval towers or simply admire the Tuscan hills. Later, you’ll head to a nearby vineyard, where an included wine tasting awaits. Please note: This excursion involves moderate walking.

Save $10 when you book this excursion up to 3 days before your tour departs. (On-tour price: $119)

Venice 3 nights Hotel info

Day 7: Carnival events in Venice

  Included meals: Breakfast

Transfer to Venice this morning, then spend the afternoon discovering the excitement and appeal of Venice’s Carnival.

• Attend a mask-making workshop to learn about the history of Carnival and its famous disguises

• Try your hand at creating your own mask before taking to the streets to join in on the revelry

Day 8: Sightseeing tour of Venice

  Included meals: Breakfast

Experience historic churches, winding canals and picture-perfect piazzas on a guided tour of the city known as the “Queen of the Adriatic.”

• Step into the iconic St. Mark’s Square and enter St. Mark’s Basilica

• View the stately Doge’s Palace, built in the Venetian Gothic style in 1340

• Marvel at the Bridge of Sighs, the link between Doge’s Palace and the New Prison

• See a glassblowing demonstration to learn about the city’s most celebrated art

Enjoy a free afternoon in Venice or add an excursion.

Optional Excursion - Gondola Ride: Canal Cruise with Music $65pp* Details

More than 100 waterways crisscross Venice, and boarding a sleek black gondola to explore them has become a time-honored tradition. On this memorable excursion, join your fellow travelers for a tour through the canals of Venice. A musician serenades you as your gondola cruises through the city. Please note: This excursion runs as weather permits. A private two-person gondola ride is available for an additional $100 per person.

Save $10 when you book this excursion up to 3 days before your tour departs. (On-tour price: $75)

Optional Excursion - Gondola Ride: Canal Cruise for Two $165pp* Details

More than 100 waterways crisscross Venice, and boarding a sleek black gondola to explore them has become a time-honored tradition. On this memorable excursion, you’ll enjoy a private, serenaded gondola cruise through the canals of Venice. Please note: This excursion runs as weather permits.

Save $10 when you book this excursion up to 3 days before your tour departs. (On-tour price: $175)

Day 9: Free day in Venice

  Included meals: Breakfast

Spend a free day exploring Venice on your own or add an excursion.

Later, say goodbye to your group at a farewell dinner.

Optional Excursion - Islands of the Venetian Lagoon: Burano & Torcello $65pp* Details

Visit the islands of the Venetian lagoon, a favorite day trip for locals and travelers alike. First travel by water taxi to Torcello, where the story of Venice began. It was here that mainlanders sought a safe haven from invading barbarians. Step inside the Basilica of Santa Maria Assunta, whose famous mosaics depict The Last Judgement. The next stop is the tiny fishing village of Burano, where brightly colored homes greet visitors. Wander as you please throughout Burano, and be sure to stop in at the island’s bakeries.

Save $10 when you book this excursion up to 3 days before your tour departs. (On-tour price: $75)

Day 10: Departure

  Included meals: Breakfast (excluding early morning departures)

Transfer to the airport for your flight home.

How's the weather?

  • Rome, Italy
  • Florence, Italy
  • Venice, Italy
Temperature Precipitation
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Passport & visa requirements

  • In order to enter Italy, U.S. and Canadian citizens need a valid passport with an expiration date extending at least six months beyond the date of reentry. 
  • We recommend having at least one blank passport page for entry stamps.
  • There is no visa required for U.S. or Canadian citizens.
  • If you are not a U.S. or Canadian citizen, you must contact your destination country’s consulate for your specific entry requirements.  

Tour pace

  • You will walk for about 2 hours daily across mostly flat terrain, including cobblestone streets, with some hills and stairs. 
  • Travelers should be healthy enough to participate in all included walks without assistance. Adding optional excursions may increase the total amount of walking on your tour.
  • You should feel comfortable managing your own baggage at times, as well as stepping between boats and uneven docks.
  • If you have any mobility concerns or physical restrictions, please contact our Customer Experience Team.

Transportation & arrival information

  • Round-trip flights booked through Go Ahead arrive in Rome and depart from Venice. A Go Ahead representative will meet you at the airport and take you to your hotel. Please remain in the arrival lounge, as the representative might be escorting one of your fellow travelers to the bus at the time of your arrival. 
  • Transfers to and from the airport at your destination are included for travelers who have purchased their flights through Go Ahead. Travelers who purchase their own flights may request airport transfers with Go Ahead for an additional cost.
  • Water taxi rides in Venice are included in the price of your tour.
  • All other included transportation on this tour is by private motor coach.

Baggage allowance

  • Airlines have varying weight restrictions on baggage. Some airlines may impose additional charges if you choose to check any baggage; be advised that you are responsible for any such costs. 
  • Contact your airline for baggage size and weight restrictions for your flight, but please note that Go Ahead travelers are restricted to one checked bag per person due to storage limitations on motor coaches and other transfers, which may include train connections or flights. 
  • One carry-on bag of 45 total inches (length + width + height) is also permitted. 
  • Make sure you label your baggage and keep valuables, medication and documents in your carry-on bag.

Clothing & packing tips

  • We recommend packing lightweight, loose-fitting clothing that can be easily layered to accommodate varying temperatures, as well as a light jacket or rainwear.
  • A sturdy pair of walking shoes or sneakers is recommended for sightseeing.
  • You may want to pack dressier attire if you plan to visit a high-end restaurant or attend a special performance. 
  • It is preferable not to visit churches or other religious sites with bare legs and shoulders (and entrance may be denied on this basis).

Health

  • There are no major health risks associated with traveling to Italy. 
  • At least 60 days prior to departure, check with your doctor or healthcare provider for the latest updates and entry requirements, or visit the Center for Disease Control and Prevention website at cdc.gov.
  • If you have medication that you take daily, be sure you have enough for each day of the tour as well as any possible delays encountered.
  • If you have dietary restrictions and/or food allergies please notify Go Ahead at least 30 days prior to departure by logging in to My Account and updating your traveler info. To update this information closer to your departure date, please call our Customer Experience Team.

Cuisine

* Roman food is typically freshly prepared and varies depending on the season. Must-try bites include cacio e pepe (a simple dish of pasta, cheese and pepper) and supplí (a fried rice ball similar to Sicily's arancini). * Tuscany is world-famous for its wine, oil, sauces and pasta. Menus favor subtle, lighter pastas and desserts made with nuts, fruit and honey. Try a dish featuring the region’s Chianina beef, perhaps the most prized breed of cattle in all of Italy. For wine, popular Tuscan reds include Chianti, Brunello di Montalcino and Vino Nobile di Montepulciano, which are primarily made from the Sangiovese grape. Well-known white wines are also made around the San Gimignano region. * Venice and Northern Italy are known for flavorful meats and pastries.  * For more authentic meals, try local trattorias, small restaurants set away from the main piazzas. A typical Italian meal includes wines and the occasional beer, followed by a few sips of after-dinner drinks like grappa or limoncello

Electricity & air conditioning

  • Italy operates on the European standard 220-240 volts and use Types C, F or L plugs with two or three small, round pins. 
  • We recommend packing a universal adapter, as well as a voltage converter if you plan on using your own hairdryer or other device without a built-in converter.  
  • The strength of the air conditioning in European hotels is often not as strong or as cool as what you might be used to in the U.S. or Canada. When air conditioning is available, it is usually regulated seasonally and controlled centrally by the hotel. 
  • Your hotel may provide hairdryers, irons and other small appliances. However, these amenities cannot be guaranteed. 

Connectivity

  • Wi-Fi is available in most hotels, though some charges may apply. 
  • There is no Wi-Fi on any of the motor coaches. 
  • Please contact your mobile service provider for information on roaming charges.

Time zones

  • Italy is one hour ahead of Greenwich Mean Time (GMT) and six hours ahead of Eastern Standard Time (EST). 
  • When it’s noon in New York, it’s 6pm on tour.

Currency

  • You will use the euro on this tour. 
  • Better rates of exchange are usually available overseas, although it’s worth ordering some currency from your local bank to use when you first arrive. 
  • We strongly advise that you take debit/bank cards and credit cards, which can be used to withdraw cash at local banks as needed. 
  • You can use most debit/credit cards at ATMs on the international networks Cirrus and Plus, but make sure to check with your home bank about withdrawal fees. 
  • Inform your bank and credit card company of your travel plans so that they won’t confuse your international purchases for fraudulent charges.
  • International banks and businesses primarily accept debit and credit cards that work with the EMV chip system. If you do not already have at least one debit or credit card with a chip in it, we strongly recommend requesting one from your bank prior to your tour.

Tipping

  • At the conclusion of your tour, it’s customary to offer your Tour Director and driver a gratuity in local currency. Please keep current exchange rates in mind.
  • We recommend tipping the equivalent of $7USD/CAD to $10USD/CAD per person per day for your Tour Director and the equivalent of $3USD/CAD per person per day for your driver.
  • If applicable, we also recommend the equivalent of $2USD/CAD per local guide. 
  • Tips can only be paid in cash. 

Purchasing excursions on tour

  • Most optional excursions will be available for purchase while you are on tour. 
  • Your Tour Director will only accept cash (in USD only), Visa or MasterCard as payment for optional excursions. 
  • Please be advised that if you pay for an excursion by credit card while on tour, it may take up to three months for your card to be charged. 
  • Some optional excursions may only be purchased in advance. See page four of your tour itinerary for more information.

Museums in Florence

  • If you are interested in visiting any of Florence's many museums during your free time, we recommend that you make reservations in advance. See uffizi.org for the Uffizi Gallery or accademia.org for the Accademia Gallery. Please note that the museums are closed on Mondays.

See what our travelers say about this tour—all reviews are authentic and unedited.

Have you been on tour with us? Visit My Account to submit a review.

5 / 5

5 / 5

Tour Date: 2/6/2016

Number of Past Tours: 3

From: MI

Tour Director: 5 / 5

Tour Value: 5 / 5

Venezia Carnavale

Venezia, Firenze, Roma.... and a few side trips... a great overall trip with lots of the highlights of Italia, plus the ambiance and mystique of Carnavale. A really unique experience. Loved the mask-making event, and a few of us brought costumes (not too elaborate) and had a fun evening out. Cool weather and some occasional rain and foggy mist added to the whole aura of Carnavale. Favorite hotel was in Venezia. Sabra (aka Sarah) had an amazing amount of knowledge and wanted to be sure we all had a wonderful time. She was a great help with advice as we ventured off on our own. Loved Orvieto.

1 / 6
 

Hi Terry! We’re glad you enjoyed your tour in Italy. Carnival certainly makes for a very special time to visit! We’re pleased to learn that you enjoyed the mask-making event. We're also happy that your Tour Director contributed to the success of your tour and did her best to ensure everyone’s satisfaction. We are very proud to work with such knowledgeable and passionate Tour Directors. Thank you for sharing your experience, and we hope to welcome you on tour again soon!

Posted by Daniela, Director of Quality Control | February 23, 2016

5 / 5

5 / 5

Tour Date: 2/7/2015

Number of Past Tours: 1

From: TX

Tour Director: 5 / 5

Tour Value: 5 / 5

The best tour ever

This was the best tour ever!! The food, shopping, tours and accomodations were wonderful. Thanks Tini, Excellent tour director.

5 / 5

5 / 5

Tour Date: 2/7/2015

Number of Past Tours: 1

From: CO

Tour Director: 5 / 5

Tour Value: 5 / 5

Great Tour Director

Tini did a great job making our trip outstanding.

5 / 5

5 / 5

Tour Date: 2/9/2012

Number of Past Tours: 4

From: MD

Tour Director: 4 / 5

Tour Value: 5 / 5

Visiting Venice (Venezia) Italy for Carnevale 2012

Words simply cannot describe the experience of being a part of the world famous Carnevale 2012 in Venice, Italy as part of Go Ahead Tours "Rome, Florence and Venice with Carnevale" Tour. From the excellent hotels which were perfectly located in each city (within walking distance of all ot the sights and festivities), free WI-FI in each of the hotels, delicious meals and the rewarding optional excursions...this tour was truly outstanding from beginning to end. GoAhead you are truly to be commended for doing such a great job in putting this tour together!!! I am encouraging all of my friends to consider this tour for or another Go Ahead Tour for 2013. Thanks!!!!

1 / 6