We will travel to three countries (Ireland, France, and Italy). More specifically, we will focus our time in and around the cities of Dublin, Paris, and Rome. Additionally we will spend several days exploring the Cinque Terre region of Italy and travel through Tuscany. We begin our adventure in Dublin, exploring the historic city with its traditional music and culture, and then traveling to several historic early Christian and cultural sites in the Boyne Valley. From Dublin we hop over to Paris. Imagine viewing Paris from the top of the Eiffel Tower, standing in Notre Dame Cathedral, visiting the Louvre, and sitting in a sidewalk café in the university district watching the people. Paris has a fantastic (and safe) subway system that will allow us to travel throughout the city and our modern hotel is only a block away from a stop.
Rather than lose a day in traveling to Italy we will take the overnight train (with a sleeper coach), arriving in Monterosso the next morning. The Cinque Terre (Italian for Five Lands) extends along the Ligurian coast of Italy. Its rugged terrain prevented the development of road and modernization up until the past few years. Now it is preserved as a UNESCO World Heritage Site and a National Park to protect the original character of the land and fishing villages. We will walk along the coast on a foot path that connects the villages with each other and take the ferry back to our hotel base. After fully exploring this region we will jump back on a train and head to Rome. One stop on our way will be the City of Pisa so we can see the Leaning Tower (an opportunity to critique this famous tourist attraction). Back on the train and on to Rome in the early evening.
This is our last destination and a great city to visit. We will walk the same paths and stand in the same Forum as Caesar. We will visit the Colosseum and the Pantheon. We will also tour the Vatican and take time to visit the Sistine Chapel and St. Peter's Basilica. We will take a night walk through Rome and visit the Trevi Fountain, the Spanish Steps, and (I insist) every Gelato shop along the way! We will fly home from Rome, returning to Nashville in the evening.