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Italy: Student Battlefield Tour

Rolling green hills in rural Italy.

Italy: Student Battlefield Tour


Tour Snapshot

Destination: ItalyType: EducationalSubject: History

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11-Day Battlefield School Trip

This educational student tour of Italy's battlefields is the perfect opportunity to teach your students about Canada's involvement in the Italian campaign of World War II, where more than 5,500 Canadian Solders died liberating the country. After visiting Rome, head to Pompeii. Other important World War II stops include the epic battleground at Cassino and the Benedictine Abbey, Montecassino. Your Tour Leader will explain the blood battle for Ortona on the Adriatic coast, with the chance to explore remnants of the vaunted Nazi Gustav line. Bringing your tour to a cultural conclusion by spending two days exploring Florence.

Trip Highlights: Rome, Pompeii, Cassino, Caira, Ortona, Rimini, Casinina, Florence



Day 1

Board your overnight flight to Rome

Day 2

Arrive in Rome

Orientation and Leisure Time to Explore Rome

Spend your first day in this magnificent city exploring your surroundings and taking in various landmakrs and pieces of culture at your own pace. An evening walk to a local restaurant to enjoy some authentic italian cuisine acts as a perfect beginning to your adventure. 

Overnight in Rome

Day 3

Visit the Old City

In store for your is a full day guided tour of Rome. Travel through time as you visit sites in the Old City such as the Forum, Colosseum, Piazza Novona, the Trevi Fountain and the Spanish Steps. 

Overnight in Rome

Day 4

Guided Tour of the Vatican Museums

The Vatican, one of the most awe-inspiring and historically significant areas of the world, is yours to discover on this half day guided tour. One of the greatest art collections in the world is featured here, contained within the beautiful palace walls of this center of power for the Catholic Church. Amazing artifacts such as Egyptian statues, Etruscan ruins and Renaissance paintings all reside in these museums. The unquestionable highlight, of course, is Michelangelo's legendary Sistine Chapel, a marvel of artistic creation. This tour is an entertaining, once in a lifetime experience that should not be missed. 

Visit to St. Peter's Basilica

This late Renaissance church located within Vatican City is an architectural phenomenon matched by few places of worship across the world. Built over a hundred year period in the 16th and 17th centuries, St. Peter's is famous for having the largest interior of any Christian church, capable of holding nearly 60,000 people inside its beautifully decorated walls. Enjoy your exploration of these hallowed halls that attract tens of thousands of toursists each year. 

Overnight in Rome

Day 5

Transfer to Pompeii

Guided Tour of Pompeii

Take a thrilling excursion through the ancient city of Pompeii, once a bustling Roman centre before its destruction at the hands of an epic volcanic eruption from Mount Vesuvius. Excavations have been taken place in Pompeii since the 18th century, providing you with archaelogical evidence of Roman life at the height of the Imperial Age. 

Transfer to Cassino

Visit to Cassino

Cassino is best known as the site of the Abbey of Montecassino and the Battle of Monte Cassino during World War II, which resulted in tremendous Allied and German casualties as well as the near destruction of the town itself.

Overnight in Cassino

Day 6

Visit Caira and Cassino

Travel to Caira, a small community to the north of Cassino and the gravesite for nearly 24,000 German troops. From here, you will visit the Commonwealth Cemetery in the town of Cassino before driving up the mountain above town to the Abbey on Montecassino. 

Overnight in Cassino

Day 7

Transfer to Ortona

Tour of Ortona and area

You will view the Moro River battlefield, the church at San Donato, the infamous Gully, and Casa Berardi where Paul Triquet of the "Vandoo" Regiment won his Victoria Cross. Ortona was the site of fierce fighting between German and Canadian forces during the Italian campaign in World War II. The ferocity of the battle led it to be known as the "Little Stalingrad" as Winston Churchill called this city. 

Overnight in Ortona

Day 8

Transfer to Rimini

Visit to Casinina

Heading north along the Adriatic coast, you will pass Pescara, Ancona and Pesaro on your way to Rimini. Visit Casinina to view old bunkers and a museum commemorating the Gothic Line. Continue to the cemetery at Montecchio, the Italian monument dedicated to Canadians at Tavullia and the cemetery at Gradara. 

Overnight in Rimini

Day 9

Transfer to Florence

Walking Tour of Florence

Once home to such influential figures as Dante, Savonarola, Machiavelli and Michelangelo, this city is truly a centre of Italian culture. Your walking tour will feature such amazing sites as the Arno River, Ponte Vecchio, the Piazza della Repubblica, the Duomo, the Piazza della Signoria and the Pitti Palace, providing you with a true sense of the magnificence of this city. 

Guided Tour of the Uffizi Gallery

This Renaissance palace was built by the Vasari in 1560 and bequeathed to the people of Tuscany by the last grand duchess of the Medici family when she died. Today, it houses what is widely considered the finest collection of art in all of Italy, a truly transcendent location to experience.

Overnight in Florence

Day 10

Leisure Time to Explore Florence

Take some time in the morning to explore Florence and visit any landmarks you may have missed. The church of Santa Croce, which was created in 1294 and houses Giotto's frescoes in the chapel and the tombs of Michelangelo, Galileo, and Machiavelli is a recommended spot. Or, for those looking for something slightly more relaxing, the open-air market known as the Mercato Centrale is a fun location to wander through. Be prepared to bargain for leather, raffia, art reproduction and more at this entertaining locale. 

Visit to the Galleria dell'Accademia

This wonderful site is home to a picture gallery housing the finest work of the Tuscan masters Botticelli and Perugino, worthy of a visit for those two artists' work alone. Most famously, it also houses Michelangelo's David, one of the most well known sculptures in the world. 

Transfer and overnight in Rome

Day 11

Transfer to Airport for Return Flight