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Best small group tours of Italy, anybody?

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Jan 5th, 2011, 10:34 AM
  #1
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Best small group tours of Italy, anybody?

Has anyone done Grand European Tours, or Rick Stevens, etc. We are two well traveled seniors, on the young side, but not into scaling mountains, or all day hikes...still, don't want to see the entire country from the bus either. We like to go leisurely, time on our own, more than one day in one place, etc., with at least some of our meals on our own, yet we often enjoy the details taken care of for us, i.e., luggage, transportation, hotels, etc. We don't like 'cattle car' deals, where you are so constrained and spend a lot of time getting on/off the bus. We usually travel on our own, but for the first time somewhere, we like some help and appreciate that much of the hassle is removed on an escourted tour.

And we like from 12 20 days, not 7...with only one week, you just get rested from the trip, into the current time zone, and it's time to reverse...send me your thoughts. We are considering for April, this year.
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Jan 5th, 2011, 11:12 AM
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You might try Abercrombie and Kent, www.abercrombiekent.com My aunt and uncle thought they were terrific, I suspect very high end.
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Jan 5th, 2011, 11:32 AM
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Also check out www.goaheadvacations.com

They do independent and group tours. We used them for an independent trip years ago and they made all the arrangements, hotels, pick-up at the airport etc., but we were on our own. But they were also available for us if we wanted to go on separate tours with the group.
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Jan 5th, 2011, 01:56 PM
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Look at Untours---a compromise.
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Jan 5th, 2011, 01:59 PM
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I've never done a tour but I think Rick Steves would be perfect for you and your husband, Clarasong. Plus since you're in the area you can get to one of his classes at the headquarters up in Edmonds.
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Jan 5th, 2011, 02:03 PM
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Stay in Venice for ten days, and do the kind of stuff that we're doing.

http://www.fodors.com/community/euro...rip-report.cfm
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Jan 5th, 2011, 06:06 PM
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Rick Steeves tours are fairly active - and he tends to stay at more modest hotels. Is that what you are looking for - or a higher degree of comfort.

Friends of may parents have done a couple of Tauck tours - with carefully selected itineraries - but they are definitely upscale.

There are some companies that do packages (air, hotel and transfers - but you pick # of days and hotel) which might be a good compromise for you.
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Jan 5th, 2011, 07:00 PM
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Clara, Tauck is expensive, but Abecrombie and Kent are REALLY pricey but fabulous - so I have heard. Both enjoy great reputations if they fit one's budget.
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Jan 5th, 2011, 07:02 PM
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Clara, forgot this one - check out Perillo tours which specializes in Italy. Enjoy!
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Jan 5th, 2011, 07:16 PM
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I have been looking into a more affordable private tour in Italy myself and have recently met with a guy who runs Italian guided tours with a small staff. He's an Italian American who has lived in Rome for over 10 years so his in depth specialty is Rome but he does trips throughout Italy as well. www.theinsidersrome.com

Hope Clarasong doesn't mind me asking if anyone has taken an insider tour like his.
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Jan 9th, 2011, 11:13 PM
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Check out labellavitatours.com who meet all your reqirements. They can tailor tours to suit with a maximum of only 6 people.
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Jan 10th, 2011, 06:08 AM
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Here is another suggestion. Teachers' Travel, based in Toronto, offers leisurely tours with a maximum of 20 people. You do not have to take flight from Toronto but can meet group in destination. On their tour to Sorrento April 2011 you stay in one hotel for ten nights and take day tours from there. I took the tour last year and hotel was excellent but the day in Pompeii I found too long but may suit your interest. http://www.teacherstravel.com/tourin...ex%20italy.htm
Not sure if this tour covers the areas you want to visit in Italy, but found the company most professional and flexible.
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Jan 10th, 2011, 10:17 PM
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Thanks Scotia and Patob, I am actually looking for an affordable custom tour for 2-4 friends who want to start in Rome and go north at their own pace.
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Jan 11th, 2011, 03:34 AM
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You may consider working with an Italy travel agent who has been on all the tours so they know the pros and cons and who will also create a custom tour to fit your needs. A bonus is these days good travel agents typically have better rates on flights than the "online travel agent" sites like travelocity, expedia etc. We've worked with http://italiantourism.us with good results customizing Italy tours for us. Buon viaggio!
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Apr 28th, 2011, 09:29 PM
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QLTours specializes in small groups (16 guests or less). QueensLander Tours
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Sep 25th, 2011, 09:40 PM
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QueensLander Tours do only small group tours to Italy and other destinations. They do a max of 16 passengers.
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Sep 25th, 2011, 09:57 PM
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jt1776Live: You already posted that -- and the OP has left the bldg (Clarasong is no longer on Fodors)
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Mar 1st, 2012, 01:30 PM
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Nada, why are you responding to a post that is over a year old and where another poster in Sept.11 posted that the OP has left the building?

Also, advertising is not allowed on Fodor's.

I wouldn't be interested in doing business with your company since you don't seem to have your act together, so to speak.
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Jan 27th, 2017, 07:07 AM
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bookmarking
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