Day 1 – Milan
Arrive at Milan Malpensa Airport, where you will be transferred to your hotel.
Day 2 – Milan
FEATURED EXCURSION: Milan city tour with visit to Da Vinci’s The Last Supper
Milan, known the world over for its high-end fashion and dazzling bounty of artistic landmarks, provides the perfect starting point for your Italian adventure. Admire the grand Gothic Duomo in the heart of the city center and then come face-to-face with Leonardo da Vinci’s magnificent fresco, The Last Supper, housed at the Santa Maria delle Grazie convent.
Day 3 – Milan, Verona (Valpolicella), Venice
FEATURED EXCURSIONS: Verona, “City of Romeo and Juliet,” and Valpolicella wine estate lunch
En route to Venice, stop in Verona—home to Shakespeare’s star-crossed lovers, Romeo and Juliet. From Verona, journey on to an exclusive wine tasting and multicourse lunch at the Serego Alighieri estate, which belongs to descendants of Dante Alighieri, one of Italy’s most famous poets. Once in magical Venice, board the River Countess where you’ll begin your exploration of the “Queen of the Adriatic.”
Day 4 – Venice
FEATURED EXCURSIONS: Venice walking discovery tour, Murano glassmaking, a time-honored Venetian tradition, and exclusive evening opening of St. Mark’s Basilica
Wind through Venice’s labyrinthine back lanes as you get an up-close view of the city’s residential heart as well as such legendary locations as the Doge’s Palace and the Rialto Bridge. Be treated to a Murano glassmaking demonstration at Arti Veneziane alla Giudecca Glass Factory, where a skilled glassmaker demonstrates the timeless art of turning liquid silica into priceless figures. Cap the day off with an exclusive once-in-a-lifetime experience at an after-hours lighting ceremony inside St. Mark’s Basilica without the crowds. Return to the ship for a Captain’s Welcome Reception and Gala Dinner. Note: It is not always possible to arrange after-hours visits to St. Mark’s Basilica. If religious functions or festivities are taking place in the evening, we will visit during regular hours.
Day 5 – Venice
FEATURED EXCURSION: Choice of exclusive “Do as the Locals Do” Venice walking tour OR “Venetian Painters at the Accademia” tour with art historian guide
Get a feel for daily life in Venice with a guided stroll through the bustling Rialto Market, or tour the renowned Accademia Gallery with an art historian.
Day 6 – Chioggia
FEATURED EXCURSION: Choice of Padua walking discovery tour OR Chioggia walking discovery tour OR exclusive guided “Go Active” bike tour of Chioggia’s beaches
Admire magnificent views of Venice and the Grand Canal as your ship departs the "Floating City" and cruises the lagoon to Chioggia. Explore this charming fishing village, often referred to as "Little Venice," on a walking discovery tour. For a more active day, bike along Chioggia's scenic beachfront along the Adriatic Sea.
Day 7 – Polesella (Bologna or Ferrara)
FEATURED EXCURSIONS: Choice of full day excursion to Bologna with exclusive pasta-making workshop with lunch OR half day excursion to Ferrara with lunch onboard
Bologna is a food lover’s paradise with unmatched specialty food stores and halls featuring locally made mortadella, handmade tortellini, luscious balsamic vinegar from nearby Modena, ham from Parma and great rounds of Parmesan cheese. Participate in a pasta-making workshop and then enjoy lunch at one of Bologna’s most celebrated restaurants. For lovers of art, spend a half day in Ferrara, a UNESCO World Heritage Site and a hidden Renaissance treasure, with a long history of art founded on the sponsorship of the noble Renaissance family of d’Este.
Day 8 – Taglio di Po, Chioggia
FEATURED EXCURSIONS: Chioggia market visit and boat ride on the Chioggia Lagoon
There’s no better place to indulge in Italy’s famed frutti di mare than Chioggia, a colorful fishing village on the Venice Lagoon. Stroll through the town’s bustling fish market with a guide. Or head via small boat to a casone (fisherman's hut on stilts in the middle of the lagoon) to experience how local fisherman harvest mussels.
Day 9 – Venice Island (Burano and Mazzorbo and Torcello), Venice
FEATURED EXCURSION: Full day “The Magical Islands of Venice”—colorful Burano with lace-making, peaceful Mazzorbo with wine tasting and Torcello with its Byzantine mosaics
Spend the day exploring the Venice Lagoon and three of its entrancing islands. Stroll through Burano with its rainbow of colorful homes, and visit a lace-making atelier. While on Mazzorbo, be treated to a very special wine tasting from a salt-water-tolerant heirloom grape, Dorona, which has been planted here to yield a luscious golden wine. Before heading back to Venice, visit Torcello, home to spectacular Byzantine mosaics depicting the Last Judgment in the seventh-century Cathedral of Santa Maria Dell’Assunta.
Day 10 – Venice (disembark), transfer to the airport
Disembark the ship and transfer to Venice Marco Polo International Airport for your flight home.
Uncover the extraordinary hidden treasures of Venice and Northern Italy
Encounter unforgettable sights on this odyssey through Northern Italy that begins in Milan, home to Da Vinci’s The Last Supper, and ends in legendary Venice, the “Queen of the Adriatic.” These two iconic cities bookend an exploration of Northern Italy that rewards the curious traveler with amazing experiences in Verona, Padua, Bologna and Ferrara.
Travel from dynamic Milan to romantic Venice. Soak up the enchantment of “The City of Water” and three outer-lying Venetian islands, Burano, Mazzorbo and Torcello. Be treated to an exclusive evening opening and lighting ceremony at St. Mark’s Basilica. Discover the charm of seaside Chioggia loved by fishermen and artists alike. Enjoy a multicourse lunch complete with wine pairings at a historic wine estate in Valpolicella. Explore medieval Padua, once home to Galileo and Copernicus; “bountiful” Bologna; Verona, the famed city of Romeo and Juliet; and UNESCO-designated Ferrara. Each of these enchanting locales is yours to uncover on the “Gems of Northern Italy.”
Who will enjoy this cruise/tour: Romantics, connoisseurs of food and wine and lovers of art and architecture. Experienced travelers looking to explore the hidden gems of Northern Italy.
All meals onboard, prepared using the finest and freshest ingredients: 9 breakfasts, 6 lunches, 7 dinners
Captain's Welcome and Farewell Receptions
Welcome and Farewell Gala Dinners
Unlimited beverages onboard, including fine wine, beer, spirits, soft drinks, specialty coffee and tea, and mineral water
8 days of excursions, including “Choice Is Yours” options, all fully hosted by Englishspeaking local experts
Guided "Do as the Locals Do" and "Gentle Walking" programs
State-of-the-art Quietvox portable audio headset system on all excursions
Use of Nordic walking sticks
7-night cruise in a riverview stateroom on the impressive River Countess
2 nights in Milan at Starhotel Rosa Grand (or similar) with breakfast
Lavishly appointed riverview staterooms and suites have handcrafted Savoir® of England beds, high-thread count 100% Egyptian cotton sheets and European duvets, and a menu of pillow options
Free Internet and Wi-Fi access
4 UNESCO World Heritage sites
Services of an experienced Uniworld Cruise Manager
All transfers on arrival and departure days
All gratuities, both onboard and onshore
Captivating onboard local entertainment
Cultural enrichment, including a Signature Lecture: “La Serenissima: The Lagoon of Venice”
The prices shown are U.S. dollars per person, based on double occupancy, and subject to availability. Prices quoted for land/cruise arrangements are subject to increase without notice. Once we have received your deposit, land/cruise prices are guaranteed. Air prices quoted via phone or email are subject to increase and are guaranteed only from the time that full payment is received. Also, air prices or air promotions mentioned on this site or on the phone do not include baggage fees imposed by airlines. Sorry, we are unable to offer air from countries other than the U.S. However, for those international customers who are able to arrange their own transportation to the trip origination city, we are able to offer the land/cruise portion of the package at the price quoted.