Explore Rome's artistic past with experts
Dr Nigel Spivey or Olivia Dobell. When
the papacy returned to Rome in 1420,
after more than a century in exile,
Pope Martin V found the city in ruins.
Humanists, patrons and artists sought to
return Rome to its former glory, inspired
by the classical remains. This process
reached its climax under Pope Julius
II (1503-1513) in what is called the
‘High Renaissance’. He commissioned
Bramante to design the ‘new’ St Peter’s
Basilica, Michelangelo to paint the
Sistine Chapel ceiling and Raphael to
decorate the Stanze di Raffaello (papal
apartments). This Golden Age had its
centre at the Vatican and was defined
by a renewed interest in the culture of
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Fly from London (regional connections
available) to Rome with Alitalia. Transfer
into the city centre for an orientation tour,
passing some of the highlights of ancient
Rome, including the Forum, Palatine Hill and
Colosseum. Continue to the Palazzo Massimo
Museum, which houses a treasure trove of
classical art, and the basilica of San Pietro in
Vincoli, where Michelangelo’s Moses is the
centrepiece of the tomb of Pope Julius II. After
a welcome dinner, stay 4 nights at Hotel Victoria
(or similar). (D)
This morning visit the basilica of Santa Maria
degli Angeli, built inside the frigidarium of
the Baths of Diocletian. Continue to Quirinal
Palace, the Italian president’s sumptuous
official residence. Transfer to the Basilica
of Sant’Agostino, a fine example of early
Renaissance architecture with statues by
Andrea and Jacopo Sansovino and a fresco by Raphael. Nearby is Piazza Navona, built
on the site of the Stadium of Domitian. Visit
the Pantheon, which contains the tombs of
Raphael and Carracci as well as several 15thcentury
paintings, including a fresco of the
Annunciation by Melozzo da Forlì. End the
morning’s tour at Santa Maria Sopra Minerva,
known for its colourful interior and frescoes by
Filippino Lippi. This afternoon, visit Oratorio di
Santa Lucia del Gonfalone, a hidden gem also
known as the ‘miniature Sistine Chapel’. Proceed
to the Farnese Palace, now home to the French
Embassy, for a special guided tour to view the
remarkable ceiling fresco cycle by Annibale
Morning visit to the Capitoline Hill, where the
monumental civic piazza and palaces were
designed by Michelangelo. Housed inside are
the Capitoline museums, holding some of Italy’s
finest classical art collections. Nearby is Trajan’s
Column, which commemorates the Roman emperor’s victory in the Dacian Wars. In the
afternoon, visit the Villa Medici, both a retreat
and entertaining house for Cardinal Ferdinando
de’ Medici. See his studio with its mannerist
frescoes by Jacopo Zucchi and the wonderfully
manicured gardens, with panoramic views over
Rome. End today’s tour at the Roman altar
known as Ara Pacis. (B)
Today spend a full day in the Vatican City.
Start with an early morning visit to St Peter’s
Basilica, before the crowds arrive. Michelangelo’s
design included the largest brick dome ever
constructed, which remains the tallest building
in Rome. See Michelangelo’s first major work,
the Pietà, and the grottoes, Renaissance
crypts containing papal tombs. You will also
have access to the Treasury Museum to see its
collection of liturgical relics, church ornaments
and statues. In the afternoon visit the
Vatican Museums on a semi-private tour in
a small group with exclusive access to the
Bramante Staircase, the Cabinet of Masks and
the Chapel of Nicholas V, which are normally
closed to the public. You will also see the
Pinacoteca, Upper Galleries and Raphael Rooms.
The tour ends in the Sistine Chapel, where you
will have an extended visit after the crowds have
Morning tour of Villa Farnesina, built for
Agostino Chigi, a Sienese banker and the richest
man in Renaissance Rome. The villa’s interior
features several important works including
Raphael’s Triumph of Galatea. Continue to
the church of San Pietro in Montorio, home to Bramante’s Tempietto tomb. This circular
sanctuary is perfectly proportioned and its
Tuscan columns and Doric entablature highlight
the reported spot of St Peter’s martyrdom. After
a farewell lunch, transfer to the airport for a
flight to London. (B, L)
As per itinerary – B: Breakfast,
L: Lunch, D: Dinner, N: No meals.
This tour is fully escorted
throughout by a lecturer who has specialist
knowledge of the destination and its culture, as
well as an experienced local guide.
This tour is based in 4-star
This tour involves some long walks
and therefore requires a good level of fitness.
Due to the fluid nature of opening
and closing times of the churches and museums,
the specified day for each excursion may need to
be altered closer to the departure date.
Hotel Villa Glori
Hotel Villa Glori is located in a quiet residential area close to the Auditorium, a concert hall designed by Renzo Piano, the Flaminio Stadium and the MAXXI Museum of Modern Art, designed by Zaha Hadid. Nearby, the elegant Parioli district has some of the city's best restaurants and shops. The hotel has a small lounge bar and is decorated in light colours with wooden floors.
Features: 52 rooms, bar, breakfast room, Wi-Fi, room service.
Room amenities: safe, minibar, air conditioning, television,...
Regional air connections are available from within the UK. Please contact your travel consultant for current prices from your nearest city.
We can also arrange flights from overseas, simply give us a call to find out more.
If you choose to take the tour without flights arranged through Cox & Kings, please contact one of our travel consultants prior to booking the flights to ensure that you are aware of the tour timings and all the implications of not booking through us. We strongly advise you not to book flights independently of Cox & Kings if significant charges would apply in case of cancellation.
Flight details may be subject to change prior to departure.
This tour can be booked / reserved online by clicking on one of the coloured links below.
RER2017: 4 Nights
The legacies of Rome's 3000-year history are visible almost everywhere, from its Roman ruins to early Christian churches...