Italy is one of those European destinations that you can never grown tired of. That’s why we love creating custom family group trips to Italy! There’s always something new to discover — which is why West Virginia resident Andrew Kinsey, along with his wife, brother, and sister-in-law, decided to return. From the breathtaking vistas of the Cinque Terre cliffside towns to the winding alleys and waterways of romantic Venice, here’s what Andrew and his travel companions discovered on this European trip:
Custom Family Group Trips to Italy – Andrew’s Group Travel Story with his Wife, Brother, and Sister-in-Law
What was your custom travel itinerary like?
Andrew: We stayed in Venice for 3 days and Florence for 3 days, and we took a day trip to the Cinque Terre and also toured some of Tuscany’s wine country.
Had you been to Italy before?
Andrew: My wife and I visited about 8 years ago, but we only toured Southern Italy then. This was my brother and his wife’s first trip to this European country.
What was your favorite activity on this group trip?
Andrew: Everything on this custom group trip was so different, we loved all of it. We were really struck by the uniqueness of Venice. They say the best activity in Venice is to just get lost — so we took a walk through the neighborhoods, never sure if we’d get stuck near a canal or waterway and have to turn around. We had such a fun time finding our way back to our hotel.
In Florence, we toured the Uffizi gallery and also went up to the top of Brunelleschi’s Dome and saw a panoramic view of the city, which was incredible.
To get to the Cinque Terre, we hopped on a couple of trains and took a ferry. Then we hiked from the town of Monterosso to Vernazza, and we jumped in the water afterwards!
In the Tuscan towns of Siena and San Gimignano, we learned about the history of the area on walking tours — and a winery tour was a part of that.
Was there any place that you wish you had spent more time?
Andrew: If we would have had had ten or eleven days in Italy, I think we would have like to spend the night in the Cinque Terre. Just so we could experience the place light up at night; I imagine it’s be so relaxing.
We also really enjoyed the winery tour; it was a beautiful setting. pretty setting. Spending the night at that Tuscany winery, if we had the time, would’ve been very cool.
Did anything about this Italy trip surprise you?
Andrew: We’d been to Spain a couple of times before; in Spain, it’s common for businesses to shut down in the afternoon as everyone has their “siestas.” We were surprised to find that they did the same thing in Northern Italy! It wasn’t a big deal since we started every day early, but it was a still a surprise.
And we ran into a small hiccup in Florence trying to catch a train. I assumed we were going out of the Santa Maria Novella station — but we were actually leaving out of a different station, which we didn’t realize until after we arrived at Santa Maria Novella! We just made our train, by the skin of our teeth.
And it was a pleasant surprise how much the Italians appreciated our attempts to speak the language — our “pigeon Italian.” Out of all the places I’ve been, Italy was just awesome. We can’t wait to go back.
And how did the Southern Travel Agency team help you plan your group trip to Italy?
Andrew: The local travel agents from the Southern Travel Agency team near me actually put together two itineraries for two different European group trips for us — southern Germany and Italy. We chose the Italy group trip. Our travel advisor Candace laid out an 8-day itinerary, asking us what we wanted to see. She had Pisa in there, but we wanted to see Cinque Terre instead, and she was happy to swap that out. She helped us coordinate train schedules, book hotels, and schedule gallery tours and winery tours. The excursions she planned were all really good. Plus, she let my wife and I use our air miles for the trip, and she did all the leg work for this group trip for us!
Let Us Help You Plan Your Own Custom Group Trip
Want to see the side of Italy that’s a little less traveled? Check out our blog post on must-see Italian destinations that aren’t Florence, Rome, or Venice — Italy has so much more to offer! If you are interested in our group trips to Italy, contact us today! Let our local Augusta travel agents near you and our online travel advisors help you to create your own tailor made group trip to Italy by clicking the button below!