Venture along the glittering Mediterranean coast on an immersive journey connecting the Spanish, French and Italian Rivieras. Taste your way along the Mediterranean coast sampling paella in Barcelona, flavorful Provençal cuisine in Marseille and traditional focaccia in Genoa. Enjoy the iconic must-sees like La Sagrada Familia and venture to gems off the beaten path, like the rolling hills of the Tuscan countryside. Take a step into the culture and meet the locals. From chameleonic Barcelona to sun-kissed Nice; from glamorous Monaco to the rolling hills of the Chianti countryside, find your dream Mediterranean journey.
You’re on your way to the Mediterranean coast for a journey connecting the Spanish, French and Italian Rivieras. From chameleonic Barcelona to sun-kissed Nice; from glamorous Monaco to the rolling hills of the Chianti countryside, embark on a coastal journey combining rich scenery, art, culture, food, and wine.
Welcome to the Mediterranean coast. Begin your journey in the spirited city of Barcelona, famed for its exceptional architecture and vibrant culinary scene. Settle in for a 3-night stay in this cosmopolitan city. Tonight, meet your fellow travellers over a welcome dinner at a local restaurant.
This morning, explore the ever-changing Catalonian capital as it was meant to be explored – on foot. Ramble along the bustling La Rambla boulevard, famous for its street artists and performers. Wander along the Gothic Quarter’s labyrinthine streets and delve into one of Barcelona’s lively food markets pausing to savour a traditional paella lunch. The afternoon is yours. Perhaps you’ll venture to the hilltop Park Güell or join an optional food tour of the Eixample district, interlacing Modernist architecture with tasty tapas.
Gain a different perspective on Barcelona during a panoramic tour showcasing the expansive Plaça de Catalunya, the Columbus Monument, and Antoni Gaudí’s Batllo House and Casa Mila building (UNESCO). Then, it’s your choice! Visit Catalunya’s National Museum of Art in company of a local guide -OR- hop on a cable car and ascend the Montjuïc Castle for bird-eye views over the bustling port. This afternoon, visit the awe-inspiring La Sagrada Família (UNESCO). Work on Gaudí’s visionary basilica began in 1882, and is scheduled to be completed in 2026, on the 100th anniversary of the architect’s death. As the day draws to a close, dine on traditional Catalan specialties at a farmhouse turned restaurant.
Set out for Girona, a medieval town known for its atmospheric Old Quarter. Explore the Barri Vell in company of a local guide and enjoy some free time to stroll along its riverbanks. Admire Girona’s colourful houses before heading to the Catalonian coast for a 2-night stay at a seaside hotel. Costa Brava is an incredibly alluring place, and the perfect region to spend your days relaxing in your sea-view room or exploring its secluded coves and beaches.
Take in the Spanish coastline during a coastal walk between the charming villages of Calella de Palafrugell and Llafranc. Then, travel to nearby Figueres, where the surreal outside architecture of the Dalí Theatre-Museum matches the artist’s legendary works inside. After taking in the mind-boggling art of Salvador Dalí, you’ll continue on to the medieval village of Besalú. This evening, relax over dinner at your hotel.
Bid adiós to Spain this morning as you cross into France during a full-day transfer. Along the way, pause at the Abbey of Fontfroide founded almost 10 centuries ago. Explore its tumultuous history during a guided visit that concludes with lunch and a taste of its locally produced wine. Check into your hotel in the early evening and make yourself at home in multicultural Marseille, France’s second-largest city.
Founded over 26 centuries ago, Marseille is France’s oldest city. In company of an expert guide, explore Le Panier district, the city’s eminently walkable old town. Narrow lanes lined with flowers and street-art embellished facades suddenly open onto the blue waters of the Old Port, the city’s museum and cultural hub. The area was entirely rejuvenated when Marseille was elected European Capital of Culture in 2013. Then, it’s your choice! Delve into the area’s prehistoric past with a visit to the Cosquer Cave, an outstanding example of primitive rock art admirably replicated in the Villa Méditerranée Museum -OR- hop on a local ferry and discover one of the city’s heritage trades during a visit to the museum of “Marseille” soap, which has been crafted in the area for over 600 years. The afternoon is yours. Perhaps you’ll venture to the hilltop cathedral of Notre Dame offering panoramic views of the city or take a scenic cruise of the Calanques National Park. This evening’s Impact Moment comes in the form of dinner at a socially responsible restaurant that uses its profits to provide meals to the impoverished for a symbolic cost.
Let the colours and light of southern France captivate you as you explore Aix-en-Provence. Perhaps you’ll visit the atelier (artist studio) of Paul Cézanne, frozen in time since the painter’s death in 1906. Or acquaint yourself with the Provençale lifestyle browsing the town’s food shops in search of the perfect olive tapenade. An afternoon transfer takes you to Nice, a coastal pearl known for its legendary opulence and balmy beaches. Join an orientation walk of the old town before setting off for an evening at leisure.
The day is yours to explore Nice. Perhaps you’ll stroll along the lively seafront Promenade des Anglais before finding your favourite café and soaking in the local life. Or join an optional tour to historic St. Paul de Vence. After exploring this charming walled medieval village, continue to Grasse, the capital of French perfume. Learn the secrets of perfume making during a hands-on workshop led by an expert perfumer, affectionately referred to as nez (nose) before returning to Nice for an evening at leisure.
Bid au revoir to France this morning as you head to Monaco, the second smallest country in the world. On a walking tour, view the changing of the guards and visit the Cathedral of Monaco – the permanent resting place of Prince Rainier III and Princess Grace. Explore the tiny Principality on a panoramic Little Train tour taking you across to Monte Carlo for views of its famous Casino. Take in the coastal views as you cross into Italy during an afternoon-long transfer to the bustling port city of Genoa. In the early evening, settle into your hotel for a 3-night stay in the Italian Riviera.
Taste your way across Genoa’s old town during a walking tour of this ancient Maritime Republic, once so affluent that it rivalled Venice. This afternoon, board a boat to one of the most glamorous spots on the Italian Riviera. Spend time in Portofino and take in the colourful harbour, dotted with fishing boats and yachts set against a backdrop of pastel-colored buildings. This evening pause for a taste of the Italian Riviera at a local restaurant renowned for its cheese-filled focaccia and home-made pesto sauce.
Spend the day exploring the colourful cliff-side villages of Cinque Terre. Take in the picturesque, rugged coastline dotted with terraced vineyards as you travel by rail. Make your way through this seemingly inaccessible string of fishing villages, nestled between the mountains and the Mediterranean Sea.
A morning-long transfer takes you to Florence, the ‘Cradle of the Renaissance’. Home to Italy's best art and architecture, Florence is a work of art all on its own. Marvel at Ghiberti’s ‘Gates of Paradise’ and Brunelleschi’s imposing dome at the Santa Maria del Fiore cathedral complex. Take in the towering Palazzo Vecchio – the centre of power of the Medici dynasty, before concluding your guided walking tour in the expansive Piazza Santa Croce. Enjoy an hour at leisure before savouring Tuscan specialties for dinner at a local restaurant. In the early evening journey further into the surrounding hills for a 2-night villa stay in the Tuscan countryside.
Let a memorable epicurean adventure commence with a truffle hunt, led by a local expert and trained truffle-sniffing dogs. Set out on foot through rolling hills and silvery olive groves in search of the elusive tuber-shaped fungi before sampling the results for lunch. Then spend time in San Gimignano, whose slender medieval towers stand tall over the surrounding vineyards. As the sun begins to set, gather with your fellow travellers for a farewell dinner at your hotel.
Say arrivederci to Italy as your journey along the Mediterranean coast comes to an end today.