From the Colosseum to the Eiffel Tower Family Vacation with London (HFFT) - 2014

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12 Day Tour from Rome to London

From the Colosseum to the Eiffel Tower Family Vacation with London
Lake Geneva stretches along Switzerland's southern border with France and is the largest lake in Europe
Lake Geneva stretches along Switzerlands southern border with France and is the largest lake in Europe
Visit the iconic Matterhorn in the heart of the Swiss Alps
The Eiffel Tower in Paris
Isola Bella
Zermatt, Switzerland
View of St Peters Basilica from the square
The Matterhorn in Zermatt, Switzerland
Visit stunning Florence and the Ponte Vecchio
Eiffel Tower

Vacation Overview

Discover Europe with your family! Start in Rome with a welcome party and dinner. Enjoy sightseeing with a Local Guide featuring visits to the Colosseum, where you get a family picture with a gladiator (if available), and St. Peter’s Square in the Vatican City. Later, walk through medieval Rome to see the Spanish Steps and to throw your coin in Trevi Fountain, then stop at the Time Elevator for a voyage through Roman history. Next, travel via Pisa to take pictures of the Leaning Tower, and to the spa resort of Montecatini, where a special highlight dinner at a local agriturismo awaits you. In Florence, visit the fortress palace of Palazzo Vecchio and sculpture-studded Signoria Square. Continue to Venice, enter in style by private boat, and enjoy a pizza party at a local restaurant. The following day a unique experience: decorate your own Venetian mask! Also enjoy a glassblowers’ demonstration and a ride on a private gondola. On to charming Stresa at Lake Maggiore for your overnight stay, then cross the Simplon Pass, ride a cogwheel mountain train, and arrive in car-free Zermatt at the base of the Matterhorn. You may wish to join an optional ride up the open-air railway on Gornergrat Mountain, before continuing to Lake Geneva. From Lausanne, ride the famous high-speed TGV train to Paris, where visits to Notre Dame Cathedral and to the top of the Eiffel Tower are included. You will also sample a freshly made crêpe. On the last evening enjoy a special send-off dinner at a local restaurant to celebrate the success of an unforgettable vacation! Transfer to London by Eurostar train and enjoy two nights, Host service, and guided sightseeing with a ride on the London Eye.

Similar Vacations that may interest you:

Welcome party & dinner; the Colosseum and Circus Maximus, family picture with a gladiator (if available); St. Peter’s Square in Vatican City; walking tour with the Spanish Steps, Trevi Fountain, Globus Local FavoriteGlobus Local Favorite Time Elevator, the Pantheon, and Navona Square

Take pictures of the Leaning Tower

Globus Local FavoriteGlobus Local Favorite Tuscan dinner at a local agriturismo

Guided walking tour with Palazzo Vecchio and Signoria Square; pizza dinner at local restaurant

Private boat ride; Globus Local FavoriteGlobus Local Favorite Venetian carnival mask decorating; vaporetto ride; glassblower demonstration; Globus Local FavoriteGlobus Local Favorite private gondola ride with your family

Cogwheel mountain train

By high-speed TGV train (first-class)

Ascend the Eiffel Tower to the top floor; guided sightseeing, visit Notre Dame Cathedral; Globus Local FavoriteGlobus Local Favorite taste a crêpe; send-off celebration dinner at a local restaurant

By high-speed Eurostar Train

Guided sightseeing on a double decker bus. Ride the London Eye

Headsets throughout the tour on the Continent


  • In the rare event that the TGV train or the Eurostar train is unavailable, alternative services will be provided.
  • In Rome, on rare occsions, the inside visit of the Pantheon may not be possible due to closure for special religious ceremonies and bank holidays.

DAY 1Arrive in Rome, Italy

Benvenuti a Roma! Welcome! Enjoy free time today to rest or to start exploring the “Eternal City.” At 5 pm, meet your Tour Director and fellow traveling companions for a festive WELCOME PARTY & DINNER. (Dinner)


DAY 2Travel Back in Time to Ancient Rome

Your day begins with a visit to the imposing COLOSSEUM, then head over to the ancient chariot racing stadium, CIRCUS MAXIMUS, for a FAMILY PICTURE WITH A GLADIATOR (if available). Cross the Tiber River to the smallest country in the world—the Pope’s Vatican City, with time to admire monumental ST. PETER’S SQUARE. This afternoon, a guided walking tour shows off the Spanish Steps and famous Trevi Fountain. Stop at the Globus Local FavoriteGlobus Local Favorite TIME ELEVATOR for a voyage through Roman history; see the PANTHEON with its 141-foot-high (43-meter) dome, and end at Navona Square with time to explore, shop, or just relax. (Breakfast)

Vatican City in Italy Visit the great Colosseum in Rome The Baroque inspired Spanish Steps connect the Trinita dei Monti church to the square below The Vatican City in Italy 
Trevi Fountain

Trevi Fountain

"Rome is one of the most filmed cities on earth, with its signature set location being the Fontana di Trevi, or Trevi Fountain, a romantic, 85-foot-high baroque masterpiece depicting the god of the sea, Neptune, and his Tritons. Not surprisingly, the best time to visit Fontana di Trevi is late at night, when the crowds have gone, the din of Rome’s traffic has died and floodlights dance magically on the water. In fact, the whole centro storico takes on a calm, timeless aspect after dark, and it is well worth stretching your legs after dinner on your own Fellini-esque promenade."

DAY 3Straighten the Leaning Tower of Pisa & Relax in Montecatini

Say arrivederci to Rome and make your way into Tuscany. Stop in Pisa and see if you can straighten its amazing Leaning Tower. This afternoon, relax by your hotel pool in the spa town of Montecatini, or maybe go exploring. A special Globus Local FavoriteGlobus Local Favorite HIGHLIGHT DINNER at a local agriturismo lets you taste the region’s famous specialties. (Breakfast, Dinner)

Enjoy the gorgeous views of Rome See the vineyard covered hillsides of Tuscany Tuscany is known for its landscapes and its artistic legacy Saint Peter 
Leaning Tower of Pisa


"It was the most perfect experiment in the history of science. Holding both a cannon ball and a small musket ball, the 30-something Pisa native Galileo Galilei scaled the steps of his city’s famous Leaning Tower, and held them dramatically over the edge. Eight stories below, the town’s most learned scholars and priests were gathered as observers. They watched as the two balls dropped to the ground at the same speed – disproving, with a single stroke, the ancient idea that objects fall at different rates depending on their weight and size. This archaic concept, which had been espoused by the ancient Greek author Aristotle, had been accepted without question for more than 2,000 years, Galileo’s great innovation was to put it to a practical test of observation. Unfortunately, this famous story is probably not true. Galileo never wrote about it himself – it was recounted in a late biography penned by his secretary, Vincenzo Viviani. Most historians now believe that it was Galileo’s imaginative disciples who invented the Leaning Tower tale in order to make the theory so clear that even a child could understand it. "

DAY 4Renaissance Florence & Real Italian Pizza

This morning, explore Florence, the “Cradle of the Renaissance,” on a guided walking tour. Visit the fortress palace of PALAZZO VECCHIO, and see SIGNORIA SQUARE with its many famous statues, like the Fountain of Neptune and a reproduction of Michelangelo’s David. On to magical Venice, where you’ll enter the city in style—by PRIVATE BOAT! Admire St. Mark’s Square, Doges’ Palace and the Bridge of Sighs. This evening, dig in to an authentic Italian pizza dinner at a local restaurant. (Breakfast, Dinner)

Visit stunning Florence and the Ponte Vecchio The Ponte Vecchio at night St. Marks Square Venice is considered one of the most beautiful cities in the world 
The Bridge of Sighs in Venice

Bridge of Sighs

"The world’s most poetically-named bridge, Il Ponte dei Sospiri, the Bridge of Sighs, was built in 1614 so that prisoners of the Venetian state could be transferred in secret from the Doge’s Palace to the so-called Nuovi Prigioni, or New Prisons. The wistful name was actually conceived by the English poet Lord Byron in the early 1800s that imagined the horror of prisoners taking their last glimpse of Venice before going underground to captivity. "
La Piazza Della Signoria

La Piazza Della Signoria

"What’s the best vantage point to ponder the most illustrious town square in Florence, the Signoria? An outdoor table in the venerable Caffè Rivoire – preferably over a delicious, if not painfully expensive cioccolata con pane, a dark and mud-thick hot chocolate. Late at night, when the crowds have gone, you can search the long shadows and imagine that very little has changed here since the 1400s. The Signoria is the most elegant sculpture garden in Europe. Masterpieces include the splendid Neptune Fountain by Ammannati, Hercules and Cacus by Bandinelli and a precise copy of Michelangelo’s David, all strategically poised in front of the Palazzo Vecchio. This grand public space has been the centerpiece of Florence since the 15th Century, the golden age when the city was established as the most beautiful in Europe. Eminent merchants in their ostentatious finery met here to discuss business in the midst of Florence’s raucous daily life."

DAY 5Decorate Your Own Carnival Mask & Take a Private Gondola Ride

Walk through the narrow streets of Venice to an original mask workshop, and decorate your very own Globus Local FavoriteGlobus Local Favorite VENETIAN CARNIVAL MASK. When you’re finished, you can use your included vaporetto ticket to return to the hotel or to find a cozy trattoria for lunch. An amazing GLASSBLOWER DEMONSTRATION and a Globus Local FavoriteGlobus Local Favorite RIDE ON A PRIVATE GONDOLA with your family rounds out your Venetian experience. (Breakfast)


DAY 6Relax in Stresa on Lake Maggiore

Travel to the heart of the Italian Lake District, the beautiful resort town of Stresa on Lake Maggiore. Explore on your own this afternoon: relax at the hotel pool or join an optional excursion to the baroque palace and peacock gardens of enchanting Isola Bella. (Breakfast, Dinner)

Lake Maggiore Stresa Isola Bella Cannero Riviera 
Isola Bella on Lake Maggiore

Isola Bella

"Isola Bella. Beautiful Island. Rising out of the waters of Lake Maggiore in Northern Italy, a gardener’s paradise awaits. When Count Carlo Borromeo decided to give his wife, Isabella, a gift back in 1632, he was thinking big. The expansive island villa and garden he planned for her are considered the epitome of Baroque-style architecture and garden design. With terraces built straight to the water’s edge, the island appears as if it is a floating flowering ship. Many of the rooms are of notable historical interest, like the Music Room, where Mussolini hosted the Stresa Conference in 1935 that should have ensured peace in Europe, and Napoleon’s Room, where he often stayed in the company of Giuseppina Beauharnais."

DAY 7Take a Cogwheel Train to Zermatt at the Foot of the Matterhorn

High in the Alps, drive over Simplon Pass to the Swiss village of Täsch, where you’ll board the COGWHEEL MOUNTAIN TRAIN that takes you to Zermatt. You may choose to explore this car-free mountain town on your own, or you can join an optional excursion to Gornergrat mountain. At 10,269 feet above sea level, it affords fantastic views, including the world-renowned Matterhorn. In the late afternoon, continue on to your hotel on Lake Geneva. (Breakfast, Dinner)

The Matterhorn in Zermatt, Switzerland View Switzerlands most famous landmark, the majestic Matterhorn Visit the iconic Matterhorn in the heart of the Swiss Alps Zermatt, Switzerland 
Lake Geneva

Lake Geneva

Stretching along Switzerland’s southern border with France, Lake Geneva (also called Lac Leman by the Swiss) is the largest lake in Europe. It’s pristine shores support a strong fresh water fishing industry. Some would argue that it offers the most beautiful views of any waterway. They are jaw-droppingly amazing; especially the snow capped Jura Alps across the lake from Montreux and Vevey. The temperatures are moderate along the lake in winter; most of the weather takes place in the mountains. In summer numerous music festivals and artistic events are held in towns along the lake, especially Lausanne, the third most popular city for travelers in Switzerland, next to Zurich and Geneva. It is a sophisticated artist’s haven and the city where T.S. Eliot lived when he wrote “The Wasteland.”


Ride the TGV Train & see Paris from atop the Eiffel Tower. In Lausanne, board the high-speed TGV TRAIN (first-class) and zoom north across France to Paris, the “City of Light.” Upon arrival, take the elevator to the TOP OF THE EIFFEL TOWER, the tallest structure in Paris, for an unforgettable experience overlooking the city. (Breakfast)

The Eiffel Tower in Paris 
Eiffel Tower

Eiffel Tower

Imagining Paris without the Eiffel Tower is like London without Big Ben or San Francisco without the Golden Gate Bridge. But no sooner had the architect Gustav Eiffel beaten his 700 competitors in the design competition for the 1889 Centennial Exposition, celebrating a century since the French Revolution, than a vocal outcry began to halt construction of the edifice. Three hundred famous French artists and writers signed a petition in the newspaper “Le Temps” denouncing Eiffel’s radically modern design as “useless and monstrous,” a blight upon the elegant fabric of the City of Light. Others critics were even more vicious, describing the proposed tower as a “tragic street lamp,” a gymnasium apparatus…incomplete, confused and deformed,” “a giant ungainly skeleton,” “a half-built factory pipe,” “a carcass” and even “a hole-riddled suppository.” Nature-lovers argued that it would disturb the flight patterns of Parisian birds. Even as the iron lattice began to rise, Parisians continued to refer to it by the less-than-flattering nickname, “the metal asparagus.” Of course, no sooner had the tower opened in 1889 than the rabid criticism evaporated.

DAY 9Explore Paris

Meet your Local Guide and explore this haute couture city to see what makes Paris so captivating. Admire the most famous sights along the way: the Opéra, Arc de Triomphe, Champs-Elysées, and visit NOTRE DAME CATHEDRAL, setting for The Hunchback of Notre-Dame. Try counting the many gargoyles, or marvel at its beautiful stained-glass Rose Window. Later, sample one of France’s specialties—a Globus Local FavoriteGlobus Local Favorite freshly made CRÊPE. The afternoon is free to maybe join an optional excursion to the Louvre Museum, home to the legendary Mona Lisa. This evening, enjoy a SEND-OFF CELEBRATION DINNER at a local restaurant. (Breakfast, Dinner)

The Arc de Triomphe standing in the center of the Place Charles de Gaulle 
Notre Dame Cathedral

Notre Dame Cathedral

Europe’s most famous cathedral, whose twin Gothic towers loom above France’s most beloved river, the Seine, actually owes a lot of its international success to the author Victor Hugo. Back in 1831, when Hugo wrote his classic novel about a hunchbacked bell-ringer at Notre Dame who falls in love with a beautiful gypsy, the medieval cathedral had fallen on hard times. During the Revolution in 1789, it had been seized, looted of its treasures and converted into an atheistic “Temple of Reason.” Even worse, after the monarchy was restored in 1815, Notre Dame was used as riverside warehouse – its once-splendid glass windows now dimmed and its facades decaying pathetically above the Île de la Cité. But Parisian’s indifference to their landmark ended suddenly in 1831, when Victor Hugo published his romantic novel the “Hunchback of Notre Dame,” (called “Notre-Dame de Paris” in French). The book was an international bestseller and lured armies of tourists to Paris in search of its Gothic cathedral setting. Hugo used this groundswell of public interest to lobby the French government for renovations of his beloved Notre Dame. From 1845 to 1864, repairs were indeed carried out – the clogged medieval streets nearby were cleared, revealing the marvelous edifice we see today.


Today, a thick pane of bullet-proof security glass keeps artlovers a safe distance from the most famous painting in the world, Leonardo da Vinci’s “Portrait of Lisa Gherardini, Wife of Francesco Giacondo,” known in French as “La Joconde” and English as the “Mona Lisa.” But back in 1911, it was simply hung on the walls of the Musée du Louvre like any other canvas. That was until a former museum employee named Vincenzo Perrugia strolled into the gallery before opening hours on August 21, noticed the room was empty, took down the Mona Lisa and walked out of the Louvre with it under a painting smock. When the loss was finally noticed, the police were mystified. For two years, the whereabouts of the masterpiece was unknown, while French detectives made various wild guesses. (It had been stolen by the Germans. By anarchists. By evil geniuses. By lunatics.) They actually arrested the country’s top art critic, Guillame Apollinaire, then let him free. Then, out of the blue in 1913, an Italian art dealer in Florence was contacted by a man calling himself “Leonardo” who claimed to have the Mona Lisa and wanted to see it hang in the Uffizi, Italy’s top art museum. Although he found it hard to believe that the thief could be so reckless, the dealer tipped off the police and agreed to meet the strange Leonardo in a Milan hotel room. There, the nondescript fellow opened his suitcase, emptied out his socks and underwear, opened up a false bottom in the case to reveal the Mona Lisa – and was immediately arrested.

DAY 10Travel the "Chunnel" to London

All aboard the high-speed EUROSTAR TRAIN! You’ll zoom up to 150 miles per hour, traveling through the undersea Channel Tunnel (Chunnel) and arriving in London in the afternoon. The evening is free—why not take in one of London’s West End theater shows? (Breakfast)

Pomp-and-ceremony in London Ride the iconic double decker bus in London London’s Tower Bridge over the River Thames Marvel at the architecture of the infamous Big Ben in London 

DAY 11See the Big Ben & Ride on the London Eye

Hop aboard a traditional London double-decker bus for a memorable morning of sightseeing that includes all the famous landmarks: Parliament, Big Ben, Westminster Abbey, the Prime Minister’s home and office at Number 10 Downing Street, Piccadilly Circus, and Buckingham Palace. Then, a ride on the LONDON EYE (fast-track entrance), Europe’s tallest Ferris wheel! (Breakfast)

The London Eye, also known as the Millennium Wheel Enjoy the views from the London Eye Westminster Abbey – the traditional place of coronation and burial site for English monarchs 
Houses of Parliament

Houses of Parliament

"Big Ben may be the most famous feature of the Houses of Parliament, but equally impressive is the hammerbeam ceiling of Westminster Hall. The Hall dates back to 1097 and, at that time, the roof was supported by pillars. During the reign of King Richard II (14th century), however, it was replaced by the hammerbeam roof seen today. This roof – its beauty and sustainability – is even more impressive when you know its history. It was built with beams made from trees that were ancient at the time, reputedly acorns, dating back to the 6th century (or earlier). If only these walls (beams, rather) could talk!"
Buckingham Palace

Buckingham Palace

"Amid the splendor of modern cities it’s hard to imagine what places looked like before they became what we know today. In a previous incarnation, the ground where Buckingham Palace now stands was a mulberry garden cultivated by King James I as food for silkworms. The silk industry he hoped to nurture never materialized, and eventually a roadhouse was built there, followed in due course by the Blake House, Goring House and Arlington House.Originally known as the Buckingham House, built as a townhouse by the Duke of Buckingham in 1709, the estate was acquired by King George III in 1762."

DAY 12London

Your vacation ends with breakfast this morning. (Breakfast)



Motorcoach with free Wi-Fi; private boat, vaporetto and gondola rides in Venice; cogwheel train; high-speed TGV train

Full buffet breakfast; 6 three-course dinners, including a welcome party & dinner in Rome, a special highlight dinner at a Tuscan agriturismo, a pizza dinner in Venice, and a send-off celebration dinner at a local restaurant in Paris

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UNESCO World Heritage Sites

The following UNESCO World Heritage Sites can be seen or visited on the From the Colosseum to the Eiffel Tower Family Vacation with London:

  • Historic Centre of Florence
  • Historic Centre of Rome
  • Venice and its Lagoon