Shrines of Italy - Faith-Based Travel


  • 14 days

  • Europe

  • Active pace

tour : 5365

Save £150 per couple

Was from

£2,059pp

Now from

£1,984pp

Prices shown exclude flights and transfers

Overview

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This comprehensive affordable journey through Catholic heritage in Italy invites you to witness the most visited shrines of the country, from north to south. Discover the inspiring Catholic Italian icons of northern Italy: From Milan’s St. Ambrose to Turin’s St. John Bosco and Padua’s St. Anthony, you’ll collect memories and inspiration that will remain with you for life. Admire the early Christian artwork of the Byzantine era in Ravenna. Spend two full days in Rome, dedicating your attention to the Papal legacies and visiting many inspiring places of worship instilling a sense of solemnity and serenity. From here, your spiritual experience continues to the places of St. Pio in Pietrelcina and San Giovanni Rotondo, and to the Sanctuaries of Loreto and Lanciano. You’ll also feel the magic atmosphere of Assisi, home to St. Francis, immersed in the enchanting hills of Umbria.

Small Group Discovery

Each Cosmos faith-based vacation is limited to an average of just 24 guests per departure. There’s always room to roam with extra space between you and other travelers—while still getting up close and personal to the experiences you’ve been dreaming of. Small-Group Discoveries include all the features of a traditional Cosmos escorted vacation, complete with expert Tour Director, Driver, and Local Guides who ensure that your health and safety is our top priority. A Small-Group Discovery vacation is the perfectly sized tour—without the crowds.

Flights available from most UK airports

Tour prices are shown without flights: make your own arrangements, or purchase your flights with us from most UK airports. All flight-inclusive tours are ATOL-protected, so you can book with confidence.

Flights available from most UK airports

2021 Tour itinerary

Inside visits and special features are shown in UPPERCASE in the tour description, including admission charges where applicable.

Total meals included:

  • 13 breakfasts, 7 dinners

ARRIVE IN MILAN, ITALY.

Day
1

Check into your hotel and spend free time exploring this busy city on your own before meeting your tour companions and Tour Director for an included welcome dinner at your hotel.

Meals included:

  • Dinner

MILAN

Day
2

Dedicate the morning to Milan's most important Catholic churches: ST AMBROSE BASILICA and the DUOMO.Celebrate M Mass and admire the treasures of the Basilica and the Duomo with a Local Guide.

Meals included:

  • Breakfast

MILAN–TURIN.

Day
3

Turin is known in the Catholic community worldwide as the home of the Holy Shroud, only available to the public on very special occasions, and St. John Bosco, the priest who founded the Salesian religious institute. Your visit includes the HOLY SHROUD MUSEUM, the BASILICA OF ST. MARY AUSILIATRICE, and the CAMERETTE DI DON BOSCO. You’ll have time to appreciate the elegance of this city and former capital of Italy before attending M Mass.
Today's Distance: 90 mi / 145 km

Meals included:

  • Breakfast

TURIN–PAVIA–SIRMIONE–PADUA

Day
4

Pavia is home to a beautiful CARTHUSIAN MONASTERY, built in the 1400s by Gian Galeazzo Visconti, Duke of Milan. The monastery is one of Italy’s “hidden treasures” with lavish decorations and monks who still live a traditional life of seclusion and prayer. On the way to Padua, you’ll also stop in Sirmione, a charming village on Lake Garda, with a medieval peninsula protected by walls and a bridge connecting it to the mainland.
Today's Distance: 245 mi / 395 km

Meals included:

  • Breakfast
  • Dinner

PADUA–POMPOSA–RAVENNA

Day
5

Attend morning M Mass at ST. ANTHONY BASILICA in Padua and enjoy a visit with a local guide, followed by a short city sightseeing and time on your own. In the afternoon, on the way to Ravenna, we’ll stop to see the ABBEY OF POMPOSA, where the Benedictine monk Guido d’Arezzo invented modern musical notation in the 11th century.
Today's Distance: 85 mi / 137 km

Meals included:

  • Breakfast
  • Dinner

RAVENNA–ROME.

Day
6

UNESCO declared the early Christian monuments of Ravenna as having “outstanding universal value.” Ravenna was the seat of the Roman Empire in the 5th century and of Byzantine Italy until the 8th century. It has a unique collection of early Christian mosaics and monuments. All buildings—the Mausoleum of Galla Placidia, the NEONIAN BAPTISTRY, the BASILICA OF SANT’APOLLINARE NUOVO, the CHURCH OF SAN VITALE, and the ARCHBISHOP’S CHAPEL OF ST. ANDREW—were constructed in the 5th and 6th centuries. They show great artistic skill, including a wonderful blend of Greek-Roman tradition, Christian iconography, and oriental and Western styles. The morning is dedicated to discovering these masterpieces and focusing on the Byzantine-style mosaics with a local guide. In the afternoon, travel to Rome.
Today's Distance: 221 mi / 355 km

Meals included:

  • Breakfast
  • Dinner

ROME

Day
7

Today you have the unique chance to attend the PAPAL AUDIENCE in the Vatican (subject to availability). Afterwards, enjoy an included city tour with a local guide to see the BASILICA OF ST. PAUL OUTSIDE THE WALLS, where St. Paul was buried after his martyrdom, ST. JOHN LATERAN BASILICA, the Cathedral of Rome and the seat of its Bishop (the Pope) famous for the Holy Stairs. Said to have led Jesus to the praetorium of Pontius Pilate, the stairs were transferred to Rome by St. Empress Helena. Finally, visit ST. MARY MAJOR BASILICA, where a reliquary contains wood from the Holy Crib. Attend M Mass here before returning to your hotel.

Meals included:

  • Breakfast

ROME.

Day
8

Visit the PAPAL SUMMER RESIDENCE in Castel Gandolfo. Wander through its GARDENS, an opportunity to reflect and meditate in quiet and relaxing surroundings. Walk through the rooms where many Popes have spent the summer months in the cooler countryside on the hills outside Rome. Later, you can join the optional excursion that will take you back to St. Peter’s to discover the treasures of the Vatican museum, or you can spend time at leisure enjoying the many monuments of Roman heritage.

Meals included:

  • Breakfast

ROME–PIETRELCINA–SAN GIOVANNI ROTONDO

Day
9

Dedicate the morning to an orientation of Imperial Rome with a local guide. Then, start your journey southward to stop in quaint Pietrelcina, to visit the house where the beloved St. Pio was born, and continue towards San Giovanni Rotondo on the eastern coast, the Saint’s home from 1916 until his death in 1968.
Today's Distance: 255 mi / 410 km

Meals included:

  • Breakfast
  • Dinner

SAN GIOVANNI ROTONDO. EXCURSION TO MONTE SANT’ANGELO

Day
10

Attend M Mass this morning at SANTA MARIA DELLE GRAZIE (Old Church), then visit the FRIARY of St. Pio, including his tomb, cell, confessional, and ST. PIO'S PILGRIMAGE CHURCH (New Church). Afterwards, take a short drive to the nearby SHRINE OF MONTE SANT’ANGELO, one of Christendom’s most celebrated shrines and where St. Michael the Archangel appeared in 490, 492, and 1656.
Today's Distance: 43 mi / 70 km

Meals included:

  • Breakfast
  • Dinner

SAN GIOVANNI ROTONDO–LANCIANO–LORETO–ASSISI AREA.

Day
11

Visit ST. FRANCIS’ church in Lanciano, home of the Sanctuary of the Eucharistic Miracle, and attend morning M Mass. Continue to the LORETO SANCTUARY, including the HOLY HOUSE, where, according to tradition, angels transported the home of the blessed Virgin Mary. Arrive at the hilltop village of Assisi, home of St. Francis and St. Clare.
Today's Distance: 298 mi / 480 km

Meals included:

  • Breakfast
  • Dinner

ASSISI

Day
12

Today, learn more about St. Francis, patron saint of animals and the environment. Attend early morning M Mass at ST. FRANCIS BASILICA, famous for its 14th-century Giotto paintings depicting the life of St. Francis. Meet your Local Guide and visit the UPPER and LOWER BASILICAS of St. Francis and the BASILICA OF ST. CLARE, founder of the Order of Poor Clares. Next, visit the BASILICA of Santa Maria degli Angeli, situated at the foot of Assisi’s hills and protecting the Porziuncola, where St. Francis is said to have founded the Order of Friars Minor in 1209, and the Cappella del Transito, where the Saint died in 1226.

Meals included:

  • Breakfast

ASSISI AREA–CASCIA–ROME

Day
13

Travel to Cascia this morning, situated in Umbria and home of St. Rita, the “Patron Saint of Impossible Causes.” Visit the SANCTUARY and see the Major Basilica, the chapel that houses the tomb of St. Rita. Also, see the Minor Basilica, home of the Eucharistic Miracle that is commemorated each year with the Feast of Corpus Christi. Return to Rome for a final overnight stay.
Today's Distance: 149 mi / 240 km

Meals included:

  • Breakfast

ROME

Day
14

Your vacation ends with breakfast this morning.

Meals included:

  • Breakfast

Things to note

Departure September 14 Anniversary of St Pio's Passing - No Papal audience on this departure.

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