There is no doubt that sunny Italy keeps lots of treasures and mysteries. And if you ask an
experienced traveler where to go in Italy to get “off the beaten path”, the answer will definitely be the south. Southern Italy is only starting to gain popularity and is becoming one of the most
fascinating getaways for a remarkable holiday in Europe. However, for those who have never
visited this magnificent country before, it can be quite tricky to make up their minds about what format of Italian tours will suit them best. Below you can find handy tips to help determine the criteria to make up your perfect Italy adventure.
Are small group tours your thing?
The southern region of Italy possesses some absolutely stunning offerings so the composition
of your tour directly depends on you aims and desires. Are you seeking for a completely
personal experience built according to your preferences from start to finish, which can be costly, by the way? Or maybe a more cost-effective trip in a company of co-travellers seems like the solution for you? Is it important for your trip to be crafted solely according to your needs or do you agree to have a mix of pre-arranged activities with plenty of free time? If it’s the first case scenario – you need a private Italy tour, if you’re leaning towards the second option, then small group tours of Southern Italy are the way to go. Now, let’s figure out why.
Travel faster, see more
Time is the most valuable resource during any vacation as you want to see as much as you can in a limited period of time. The first undeniable advantage of traveling with a small group is mobility. Normally, travelers of small group tours get from one location to another using
high-speed trains and private transport. This means that your connection from Rome and
Naples takes a matter of 1,5 hours, which is really convenient and time-savvy compared to
flights and bus rides that can take two or even three times as long when taking into mind
security boarding checks or traffic.
Moreover, the majority of Italian cities have narrow winding streets which are impossible to ride by a huge tour bus, so when in small group you won’t need to stay at hotels that are far away from the city centers since you’re not limited to locations where tour buses are allowed to go.
For instance, after your guided tour in Rome you can explore not only the most famous hallmarks of the Eternal City such as the Colosseum, the Spanish Steps, the Sistine Chapel and the Trevi Fountain, but have a the chance to go on a more extensive walk around the world’s smallest independent state, Vatican, and see some Roman highlights hidden away from the jostling masses by yourself or dine in the restaurants of your choice.
Thus traveling with a small group tour instead of a big tour, designed for 40 people who travel on a bus, means that you spend more time enjoying a destination, instead of wasting time on long connections, traffic and airport queues, or getting to the heart of town from your hotel that’s really far away from the center. Plus all the logistics is taken care of for you and you won’t need to stand in long lines trying to purchase tickets nor bothering to buy them in advance since every ticket along the way is already covered.
Another undeniable benefit of a Southern Italy tour in small group is a more personal experience compared to large bus tours. Small group tours are accompanied by top-notch private guides who can cope with all questions of your interest and be as informative as possible. As a rule, the group consists of no more than 15 people, which helps the guide to make any walking tour more broad and comprehensive, thus there is way less rush – you won’t find yourself spending only 30 seconds looking at the Sistine Chapel or running through the main halls of the Vatican Museums and afterward waiting up for a group of 40 people to gather. When it’s only 15 travelers, you can have more time to actually enjoy places of interest without being rushed.
Moreover, the included guided sightseeing tours with the group won’t take the full day, say, 3 to 6 hours, so you get all the time you need to explore on your own, which basically makes the program very similar to that of any private tour you might want.
Freedom above all
Contrary to popular belief, small group tours (unlike large bus tours for 40+ travelers) provide you with a lot of freedom of action, which means that you can mix guided pre-planned historic
sightseeing with any activities and optional tours to take during your free time. So actually you can manage at last half your time as you wish almost like on a private tour and it’s great news, isn’t it?
For example, if you want to spice up your Amalfi Coast exploration consider including a day trip to the spectacular Isle of Capri with its breathtaking views or, for example, a gastronomic tour to Sorrento to get the taste of the south. Without a doubt, your journey to Venice won’t be complete without a romantic gondola ride through manifold canals. If you are a true adventure lover, you can adorn your vacation with an optional tour to the Catacombs of Rome, these ancient burial places,tunnels and mummies located right under the Eternal City streets fascinate and freak out at once so you might need some courage to see this mysterious and gloomy place. However, if you need more personal space, you can spend your time for local dining experiences, shopping or exploring the surroundings by your own.
Live as a king
Traveling in a company of 12-14 people offers plenty accommodation options. When on a small group tour be sure that you won’t live in the middle of nowhere outside the city and spend much time, reaching the next point on your travel map. Small group members usually stay at centrally located hotels in the very heart of Rome, Naples, Venice, Sorrento and other cities planned on the itinerary. This facilitates the access to “must-see” attractions and helps to soak up the atmosphere of each city. Just imagine how awesome it is to wake up, open the curtains and see splendid Rialto Bridge in Venice or the Trevi Fountain in Rome just from your window. Of course, if you’re on a private tour you can choose to stay at practically any hotel that you like, but with small group tours the accommodation options are usually very descent as well.
To conclude, choosing a small group tour is a great alternative for your Southern Italy tour as it’s a perfect blend of comfortable living and transportation, historical sightseeing and free time for self-standing walks and shopping. Such itineraries are made up to consider the most exquisite demands to refine your Italian vacation and the whole experience. So you’ll definitely leave Southern Italy with a scope of unforgettable memories and an overwhelming desire to come back.