Uncover Ravenna's glittering past with
experts Rowena Loverance or Dr Sally
Dormer. In 401AD, the city became the
capital of the western Roman empire
and mosaic-decorated churches were
built. Ravenna flourished during the
early sixth century under the Ostrogoths,
who commissioned further splendid
monuments. In 540AD it became the
main outpost of the Byzantine empire
in western Europe, experiencing another
lavish period of patronage, and the
Lombards assumed control in 751AD.
Decline was inevitable, but vital in
ensuring the survival of Ravenna’s
Saving up to £100 on specific departures when booked by 16 Feb 17
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Fly from London (regional connections
available) to Bologna with British Airways.
Transfer to Ravenna and stay at the NH
Ravenna Hotel for 3 nights. Afternoon visit to
Sant’Apollinare in Classe, dedicated to the first
bishop of Ravenna and consecrated in 549AD.
It demonstrates the form and function of early
Christian basilical churches and provides an
introduction to Ravenna’s glorious mosaics.
Return to Ravenna for a welcome dinner. (D)
Visit the so-called mausoleum of Galla Placidia,
where the interior contains fine early-Christian
vault mosaics. Continue to San Vitale,
consecrated in 547AD by Bishop Maximian.
This is one of the most significant Byzantine
centrally planned churches to survive, with much
of its interior decoration still intact. Afternoon
visit to the Residenza dei Vescovo to view
masterpieces from the Museo Arcivescovile,
including a 6th-century ivory-clad archbishop’s
throne. Visit the archiepiscopal chapel (now
dedicated to St Andrew), located on the first
floor of the archbishop’s palace complex, to see the 6th-century mosaics inside. Continue to the
octagonal Orthodox baptistry, which bears the
name of Bishop Neon, who commissioned the
extensive interior mosaics and associated stucco
decoration. The final visit of the day is to the
cathedral, built in the 18th century on the site
of the original 5th-century five-aisled Basilica
Ursiana. It contains important early Christian
sarcophagi and a 6th-century marble pulpit. (B)
Morning visit to the Basilica of Sant’Apollinare
Nuovo, built by Theodoric, king of the
Ostrogoths, as a palatine church. The splendid
mosaics include 26 Christological panels and
processions of male and female martyr saints.
Continue to the late 5th-century octagonal
Arian Baptistry, which contains mosaics of
Christ’s baptism and a procession of apostles.
Visit Theodoric’s Palace, where remnants of the
mosaic floor are on display, then pass Dante’s
tomb en route to the basilica of San Francesco,
which has a flooded crypt. (B)
Morning visit to the Mausoleum of Theodoric. This unique 10-sided mausoleum was built from
huge blocks of ashlar masonry on the outskirts
of Ravenna. Drive north of Ravenna, past inland
lagoons with fascinating birds and fishermen’s
huts, and see ancient umbrella pine forests.
In Bagnacavallo, there is a special visit to San
Pietro in Silvis. Dating from the 7th century, it
provides useful comparisons with the churches
in Ravenna and contains some interesting
14th-century Giottesque frescoes. After a typical
Italian lunch, drive to Bologna 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.
The NH Ravenna Hotel is situated close to the Basilica of Saint John the Evangelist in the centre of Ravenna. All 84 rooms are designed in a contemporary style with modern facilities. There is a restaurant that serves a combination of regional and national Italian cuisine. The restaurant is open for breakfast daily and dinner on Monday to Thursday only.
Features: 84 rooms, restaurant, bar.
Room amenities: free Wi-Fi, minibar, satellite television, air conditioning, heating, safety deposit...
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.
IMA2017: 3 Nights
The historical knowledge that Professor Robin Cormac, our UK guide, shared with us brought Ravenna alive.Mrs Josephine Rednall
Ravenna is the best place to see early Christian and Byzantine church architecture and decoration of the fifth and sixth centuries...