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Italy

Rome and Assisi

We devote a day each to ancient classical Rome, the early Christian church and the Vatican. Highlights include the Coliseum and Arch of Titus, the catacombs and St Peter’s Basilica. Driving time for the hundred miles to Assisi is about three hours and we break the journey with a visit to the hilltop town of Orvieto.

The bustle of Rome is contrasted with the peace of Assisi, where visits include the Basilica of St Francis, the church of St Clare, Santa Maria degli Angeli and other pilgrimage sites around the town. Highlights include a Eucharist in the Catacombs and a ‘Rome by night’ tour to see the floodlit monuments.

Itinerary

  1. Fly to Rome

    Depart UK for Rome and check in at your hotel for a four night stay.

  2. Classical Rome

    We start the day at the Coliseum set beside the Palatine Hill, the Via Sacra, the Roman Forum and the Arch of Titus. This was the heart of the Roman Empire.  We join the Anglican Centre for their lunchtime Eucharist and continue to the great Basilica of St Peter.

  3. The early Christians

    We travel along the Appian Way, the route Peter and Paul would have taken entering Rome, to visit the Catacombs, originally the burial chambers of early Christians.

    We drive back towards Rome, passing the church of Domine Quo Vadis to the Basilica of St Paul Outside The Walls. After a lunch break we visit the Basilica and Baptistery of St John Lateran.

  4. Vatican City

    This morning we visit the museums of the Vatican including Michelangelo’s masterpiece, the Sistine Chapel. The afternoon is free to wander around at your leisure and visit other places of interest.

  5. Orvieto

    We drive south through the beautiful countryside of Umbria to visit Orvieto perched high on a cliff edge and once a major centre of Etruscan civilisation. We take the funicular railway up to this medieval city to visit its impressive Gothic cathedral. After a lunch break we continue to Assisi. We call at the Church of Santa Maria degli Angeli in Assisi before continuing to our accommodation for a three night stay.

  6. Assisi

    A full day in and around Assisi. Our main visit is to the Basilica of St Francis, mother church of the Franciscan order. We celebrate Communion together here and see the Giotto frescoes. Our other visits include the Basilica of St Clare and the monastic complex St Damian where St Francis heard the words ‘Rebuild my Church’. After a break for lunch we drive up to St Francis’ hermitage where we spend time in the peace of St Francis’ retreat.

  7. Assisi

    An opportunity to join the welcoming Anglican community of St Leonard’s. The rest of the day is free to explore Assisi at your leisure.

  8. Homeward Bound

    Depending for Rome Fiumicino airport after breakfast. Fly to UK.

Essential Information

The price you pay is inclusive

The only extras you need to budget for are lunches, drinks and shopping. We include gratuities to guide, driver and hotel staff.

2020 Price: £1,645, Single Supplement: £65, Travel Insurance Premium:  £49 up to age 75 and £74 for age 76-90

Included

Flights, 23kg baggage allowance, hotel accommodation, breakfast and dinner daily, sightseeing programme, entrance fees,  guiding and gratuities

Not included

Travel Insurance, Single Room supplement, lunches

Touring information

Days generally start at 9am and finish around 5pm with dinner served around 7 or 7.30pm. Lunches are not included as we like to keep flexibility of each day’s timings, but our tour managers are expert at recommending options each day. You will have your own air-conditioned coach, except for the day visiting Classical Rome when walking is necessary as coaches are not allowed to enter this area during the day. All entrance fees are included.

Passports, visas and health

A visa is not required by British and EU passport holders, but please do check that your passport is not out of date. If you are holding a passport from a non-EU country let us know and we will check whether a visa is required. We recommend that you keep your passport in your hotel room and do not carry it on excursions. No inoculations are recommended.

Travel Insurance

The McCabe recommended insurance policy is designed for the older traveller. The premium for an Italian pilgrimage is £49 up to age 75. Travellers aged 76-90 pay £74 and we also recommend that older travellers obtain a note from their doctor stating that they are fit to travel. Do feel free to shop around as there are many suitable insurance options including annual policies on the market. We do insist that all travellers take out medical insurance.

A key feature of our recommended policy is that there is no requirement to call a Medical Help Line as most pre-existing conditions are covered.

You can read the full policy wording here.

Airline

Flights can be arranged from Gatwick, Manchester, Stansted, Birmingham, Edinburgh and other airports. Please check the specific flights shown for your chosen departure. We recommend a Monday start date, which gives a Sunday in Assisi but any departure day is possible

Hotels

You can expect comfortable, clean accommodation during your stay and all rooms have private facilities. McCabe uses a mix of religious guesthouse accommodation and locally graded three star hotels.

Breakfast and dinner are served generally at your accommodation.

You can click on the hotel websites below:

Casa Per Ferie Santa Lucia Filippini, Rome - Religious Guest House

Oasi Sacro Cuore, Assisi - Religious Guest House

Cuisine

Breakfast: Italians are not great breakfast eaters with just croissants and coffee being the norm.  Dinner will normally consist of a pasta dish or soup followed by a meat course and desert. Italians don’t normally eat vegetables with a meat course.  Sometimes an “antipasti” course is offered or a salad bar to begin your meal. Coffee can be ordered at the table or at the bar and is not included at dinner. It is the Italian custom to drink bottled water at the table, which can be with or without gas. This is inexpensive as is house wine, which can be ordered in a small or large carafe; generally cheaper than buying by the bottle. Extras should generally be paid for in cash at the table and rounded up a little … say 5% or to the nearest round figure. It is not necessary or expected to tip more than this.

Practical information

Travelling Alone

Many of our passengers travel alone and object to expensive single room supplements. McCabe Pilgrimages will accept individual bookings on a 'guaranteed share' basis. We charge the basic price and accommodate you with a person of the same sex also requesting shared accommodation. If we do not find someone to share with you, you will be accommodated in a single room at only 50% of the usual single room supplement. For single travellers who do require single accommodation this should be requested when booking and, if available, the normal supplement will be payable.

The McCabe Educational Trust

For many, meeting the ‘Living Stones’ of The Land becomes a real highlight of their pilgrimage. The McCabe Educational Trust is an independent registered charity with the aim of helping inspiring people we meet on pilgrimage. On your pilgrimage you will meet some of these people. As ‘the haves’ encounter the ‘have nots’ the Trust has become a practical tool for one to help the other.

McCabe Pilgrimages invite all travellers to become partners in this work. A £15 voluntary donation to the Trust’s work is added to every pilgrim’s invoice and all money raised in this way is given in full to the projects the Trust supports. This scheme is voluntary and confidential with nobody put under any pressure to participate.

Full Financial Security

All money paid to McCabe is fully secure. Holidays including flights are covered by our ATOL license from the Civil Aviation Authority, and holidays without flights are protected by our membership of the ABTOT bonding scheme. If a pilgrimage is cancelled, for instance through lack of numbers or for political considerations, McCabe will promptly refund all monies paid.

AITO Quality Statement

McCabe Pilgrimages is a member of the Association of Independent Tour Operators. The Association represents Britain’s leading independent tour operators and encourages high standards of quality and service. McCabe abides by the Association’s Code of Conduct and adheres to the AITO Quality Charter.

You can read McCabe reviews on the AITO website HERE

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Dates

Our Programme Tour Leader Tour Dates Availability
Prices from £1645 pp The Revd Alison Newman 05/10/2020 for 8 days Download brochure Book now

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