20-day Amsterdam to Milan including Italy

A journey from North to South covering Netherlands, Belgium, France, Monaco and loads of Italy

You’re in for a European treat that’s sweeter than a chocolate croissant!

Starting in the Northern medieval cultural hotspots of Amsterdam and Bruges you make you way south on a journey to the sun accompanied by an awesome U. Guide as we hop on and off the local trains along the way. 🍽️🍷🥖🥐✨

In Paris, oh la la, you’ll fall in love with everything from the Eiffel Tower to behind-the-scenes bakeries, we’re talking Louvre, Notre-Dame, cruises on the Seine, and sipping coffee like a true Parisian. Lyon tickles your taste buds as you learn to play Pétanque like a local, Segway with a wine, and feast like a King. And kings are replaced by Popes in Avignon and the ‘rich n famous’ in Nice and Monaco. Explore the Mediterranean coastline and immerse yourself in the VIP beach vibes. Think glamorous chaos and epic sunsets!

From Milan there we take on 10-days of everything Italian. It’s a whirlwind of Italian flavours, cultural wonders, and picturesque settings that promise memories as rich as the gelato flavours sampled along the way! 🇮🇹🍝🏛️🍷✨

Roman & Culinary Adventures. Florence & Tuscan Wonders, Venetian Dreams, Verona’s Historical Charm and of course the Insta-banger of Riomaggiore. There is a reason we can’t get enough of Italy and we are excited to share it with you! 🍕🎉🏖️🥂✨

At a glance

From: 3,093

Amsterdam to Milan

Netherlands, Belgium, France and Italy

From North heading South on a route to the sun we kick off in Amsterdam, the city of canals, epic architecture, and maybe a peek at the red light district. 🏰🌷🏙️

Over 10- amazing days you immerse yourself in the medieval town of Bruges, the city of Love, Paris, France’s gastronomic capital or Lyon and ancient Roman architecture and Papal Palaces in Orange and Avignon. 🌈🎩🍺🏰🍫

Then hit the French Riviera for a blend of culture, art, and glam—perfume secrets in Eze, James Bond moments in Monte Carlo, and Cannes, where luxury’s the lifestyle; before a pizza pit stop in Milan. 🌊🍹😎🌴

A round trip of everything Italian

From our pit stop in Milan your Italian job starts in Riomaggiore, the Cinque Terre gem, where insta-worthy villages squeeze between seaside cliffs and dramatic sunsets! Heading south via Pisa’s leaning tower antics to a whirlwind historical tour of Rome, including iconic sights and a mouthwatering pasta-making session with a local chef.

Then journey north to Tuscany’s rolling hills for vineyard tours, breathtaking landscapes and captivating Florence with its art, leather markets, and enchanting streets. The Italian Renaissance continues as Venice beckons with its canal magic, Murano’s glassblowing, and an immersive exploration of its maze-like streets. Spritz by the canal? Absolutely.

And finally a quick stop in Verona to marvel at its grand coliseum and Juliet’s famous balcony before heading back to Milan for a stylish Italian farewell.

Your European Experience Begins in Amsterdam

Get ready to kick off your European Rail Trail adventure in the vibrant city of Amsterdam!

It’s time to connect with your fellow travellers and your totally awesome U.Guide for the start of an experiential journey, full of new friendships and epic travel stories 🤝🌟 🕓

We chose Amsterdam as out starting point because it’s like a shot of experiences in a small geographic package! It’s got history, culture and modern vibes, and it’s really easy to get to with loads of international flights and cheap European discount airlines. 🏰🌷🏙️
On the agenda: connecting with your group, exploring beautiful historical canals, ogling at centuries-old architecture, hunting down the local dish ‘Hollandse Nieuwe’, and even a cheeky peek at the famous red light district.

Included activities: Guided Amsterdam walking tour
Accommodation: Twin and triple centrally located sustainable hostel rooms

Day 1: Amsterdam

A Fairytale World

All aboard the early morning train from Amsterdam to the medieval wonderland of Bruges! Hold onto your hats because you’re time-traveling back to the 9th century! 🚂 🕰️

Bruges is like that one friend who’s stuck in the past but totally rocks it. Picture this: narrow streets made of cobblestone, buildings so colourful they belong in a rainbow, chocolate shops popping up like rabbits out of a magician’s hat, beer breweries that make, well, Belgium beer, and canals that earned it the nickname “Venice of the North.” 🌈🎩🍺🏰🍫

Afternoon delight? You betcha! You’re diving into an engaging exploration of Bruges – get ready for the full historical lowdown, from its cash-cow trading history to its fancy-pants Gothic and Renaissance architecture. We’re talking fairytale vibes, winding canals, and stunning historic neighbourhood squares. 📚✨

Hungry? Thirsty? Fear not! It’s Belgian delicacy time! Ever wanted to hug a Belgian waffle loaded with more cream and jam than your sweet tooth can handle, how about getting cozy with the national dish, Moules-Frites (mussels and fries), Belgian chocolate – of course, and don’t forget to wash it all down with a local Belgian-style ale or witbier! Bruges is a truly iconic experience. 🥞🍟🍻

Included activities: Guided Bruges walking tour
Accommodation: Triple and quad share hotel

Day 2: Amsterdam to Bruges

A Feast for the Senses in the City of Love

Alright, your odyssey continues south from Bruges’s old-world charm to the “City of Love,” Paris! 🎢🇫🇷

The train ride is like a spa day for your eyeballs! Picture this: green fields tumbling by like they’re auditioning for a nature documentary, and picturesque and quaint countryside villages. 🌳🏘️

Upon hitting Paris, it’s like being given the keys to a magical kingdom. Your evening is as free as a bird, ready to explore this enchanting metropolis. Stroll along the Seine River, plotting your conquest of delicious French cuisine, pursue the luxury shops of the Champs Elyse like a true fashionista,or play “spot the shimmering lights of the Eiffel Tower.” Spoiler alert: they’re everywhere! 🌃🍷🗼

Paris by dusk? It’s not just an experience—it’s like getting front-row seats to a fireworks display of memories as you climb the Spanish steps to the magnificent Sacré-Cœur to soak in the sunset over Montmarte.! Perhaps tonight you’d like toventure into the glittering world of the Moulin Rouge cabaret or the vibrant bars and cafes around the Marais district✨🌟

Included activities: Guided evening Paris walking tour
Optional activities: Moulin Rouge cabaret
Accommodation: Shared hostel rooms

Day 3: Bruges to Paris

There’s no Cure for Paris!

Paris is like a buffet of awesomeness, and ‘boring’ doesn’t even make it to the menu! 🥐🗼🎉

So, where do we even start in this city that’s like a treasure trove of cool stuff? Well, slip on those walking shoes because your U.Guide will take you on a jam-packed city tour. Louvre? Check! Notre-Dame Cathedral? You got it! Eiffel Tower? Obviously! Champs-Élysées? Absolutely! Arc de Triomphe? Don’t mind if we do! The Latin Quartier? Be rude not to! And that’s just the warm-up.

You’ll be strolling through the famous streets, breathing in over a thousand years of architectural history, and sipping coffee on sidewalks like a true Parisian local. 🎬☕

This afternoon there is the option for a behind-the-scenes culinary escapade at a baker’s workshop (because who doesn’t want to bake their own baguette like a pro?). Parisians don’t joke about cuisine—especially not when it involves learning the magical secrets of baguettes, croissants, or pain au chocolat from a local baking wizard! 🥖🥐✨

Alternatively, join us on a U.Impact! Experience – Paris waterways hum with trade and tourism and unfortunately, also plastics and rubbish. Locals and locals organisations are making a huge effort to clean up their beloved Paris, and we do our best to get involved. Our small effort gets us off the beaten track and visiting some of the awesome local parts of Paris while leaving a positive footprint.

But wait, the day’s not done! We’ll regroup later in the evening, and jump on an evening cruise along the River Seine while the sun sets over Paris. It’s been a day filled with culture, food coma-worthy delights and our meaningful contribution to the environmental protection of this incredible city! 🌅🚢

Included activities: Guided Paris walking tour, U. Impact! Experience – river cleanup
Optional activities: The secrets of French baking experience
Accommodation: Shared hostel rooms

Day 4: Paris

Time to Embrace the Best of French Cuisine

Saying goodbye to the ‘City of Love and Light’ will be really hard this morning as we leave Paris.

No one can deny there is something so special about Paris that it wins over any heart. But ah, Lyon, the “Gastronomic Capital of France” here we come! It’s like Willy Wonka’s Chocolate Factory, but instead of sweets, it’s a paradise for cuisine lovers. 🍽️🍷

This city didn’t just stumble upon culinary fame — being at the confluence of the Rhône and Saône rivers has meant a utopia of produce such as, meats, dairy, veggies, wines, and oils have been developing for millennia! 🥩🧀🍷

There are more Michelin stars (in their restaurants) than a galaxy far, far away! 🌟🍽️

We roll into Lyon in the early evening, drop our bags at the accommodation, and it’s off on a mission to hunt down dinner, winding our way through cobblestoned alleyways amongst tremendous Renaissance architecture to discover a galaxy of hidden flavours! 🌌🍴

Included activities: Evening exploration of Lyon
Accommodation: Twin and triple rooms in local hostel

Day 5: Paris to Lyon

Exploring Like a Local

Alright, rise and shine, Lyon explorers! You’re kicking off the day diving into Lyon’s Old Town, a fairytale of cobblestone streets, Renaissance buildings, and traboules (secret passageways). No wonder it got the UNESCO stamp of approval! 🏰🕵️‍♂️

We’re aiming for a picnic lunch just outside the old city at one of Lyon’s ancient Petanque courts! Picture this: red wine flowing, baguettes being devoured faster than you can say “bon appétit,” patè, cheeses that could make you melt, and meats so local they’re practically introducing themselves. All while testing your arm with the local sport of boules! 🍷🥖🧀

As the afternoon rolls in, we’ll wander through the historical silk production commune with a bit of French fashion history thrown into the mix. But hold onto your wine glasses, because we finish an amazingly local day with a Beaujolais wine tasting tour by Segway! 🍇🍷✨

Included activities: Walking tour of Lyon, local pétanque, segway and wine tasting
Accommodation: Twin and triple rooms in local hostel

Day 6: Lyon

Roman Architecture Grand Enough for a Pope

This morning we take a short scenic train ride southward through the Rhone Valley and into the Provence-Alpes-Côte-d’Azur region!

We’re bound for Avignon, but not before we get off the train to explore the town of Orange. Founded in 35 BC, Orange is a treasure trove of UNESCO antiquities. We’ll check out the magnificent Roman Théâtre antique d’Orange aand see the original Triumphal Arch of Orange, before rebounding the train for an even shorter hop to Avignon 🌞 🚂 🏛️

Avignon is another fairy tale which has come to life with majestic masonry architecture everywhere, grand engineering of the Papal Palace, fortified walls and streets so cobblestoned they give your shoes a massage.

In fact, Avignon was the Catholic Pope’s party pad back in the 15th century so your first stop is the Palais des Papes! Think grand, think white marble, think medieval, think MTV Cribs but for 15th-century religious leaders. 👑🏰

As the sun slowly settles into the surrounding vineyards we wander down to the iconic Pont (Bridge) Saint-Bénézet — because taking photos for the ‘gram’ is mandatory! In the old town as the dusk takes hold there is a surprising culture of craft beer pubs and eateries that are like a mishmash of Roman, Spanish, and Mediterranean cultures. 📸 🍻🍝🌌

After the hype of Paris and Lyon it’s the perfect evening to sit back, relax, and soak in the warm Provence night with an air of French sophistication under the Avignon stars! ✨

Included activities: Exploration of Orange and entry into Roman Theatre, walking tour of Avignon
Accommodation: Twin and triple rooms in hotel

Day 7: Lyon to Avignon

Living the Life of the Rich and Famous

Ladies and gentlemen, welcome to Nice—the playground of the fancy pants! The historically impactful vibes of Avignon and Orange bid adieu, and here comes the fun, high-end beach extravaganza! Nice is all about flaunting that stunning Mediterranean coastline and living the vibrant life. 🌊🍹 🕶️🌴

A scenic train journey sees you coasting along the Mediterranean, traversing the trading city of Marseilles. Once we hit Nice, you’ve got the whole city at your fingertips. Lounge on the beach with the who’s who like it’s your personal VIP section, or immerse yourself in the vibrant chaos of the Old Town (Vieux Nice) with colourful markets and delightful cafes. But don’t miss a stroll along the Promenade des Anglais taking in a sunset of epic proportions! 🏖️🌈☕ 😎🚂

Nice is a wonderful blend of smooth latté seaside relaxation and a double espresso with a shot of nightlife buzz! So, why not get that fancy attire out of the bottom of the backpack and when the sun sets, dive headfirst into the luxurious charm of the French Riviera. 💃🥂

Included activities: Evening exploration of Nice, sunset on Promenade des Anglais
Accommodation: Triple and quad rooms in Mediterranean Villa

Day 8: Avignon to Nice

A Big Gulp of Diversity Across the French Riviera

Get your cameras ready for a picturesque ride along the French Riviera! 📸🎢

You first stop is Eze, the medieval village that’s not just high up in the hills but also high on stunning Mediterranean views! Making the most of the Provence lavender, herbs and local flowers, Eze is known for it’s deeply rooted history of creating French perfume. Ever wanted to master the art of smelling good? Today’s your day to unlock a secret profession and become a perfumer extraordinaire! 🌸✨

Then smelling like a bed of roses we’re off to Monte Carlo—home to the Monte Carlo Casino, where Lady Luck plays favourites, opulent yachts that make Noah’s Ark look tiny, and a F1 street circuit that’s seen more racing action than a Mario Kart tournament! We will wander the streets being all James Bond, check out the supercars lighting up their exhaust pipes in the famous tunnel after the double right-hander called Portier on the F1 Street Circuit, and take a moment to enjoy the stunning view back over the coastline.. 🎰🛥️🏎️

We move on to Saint Paul-de-Vence, an artists’ haven where creativity flows like a river in a rainstorm. Galleries are like candy stores amongst the charming streets, and you can really feel the creative energy of the picturesque village that has leant inspiration to so many artists over the decades. 🎨✨

Finally as we mosey back to Nice no trip along the Rivera would be complete with out a grand entrance into Cannes—where luxury isn’t a word, it’s a lifestyle! The bustling Croisette Promenade is a runway for posh boutiques and glamorous hotels. Cannes isn’t just about film festivals; it’s about beaches that deserve their own magazine covers and an upscale vibe that’ll make you feel like you’re sipping champagne with the stars (or so we imagine on our travel budgets). 🥂🌟

Today is a blend of culture, art, and glam — like mixing all your favourite flavours into a French Riviera cocktail for a big sip of diversity! 🍹✨

Included activities: Guided French Riviera tour – Eze, Monaco, Saint Paul-de-Vence, Cannes, secrets of Perfume experience
Accommodation: triple and quad rooms in Mediterranean Villa

Day 9: French Rivera, Nice and Monaco

Bring on the Pizza!

Alright, folks, it’s the penultimate day! Time for a “late wake-up call” because, hey, you’ve earned it! 😴☕️ We’ll sip on our final French coffee while the Riviera whispers its sweet goodbyes. It’s like a dramatic movie scene but with croissants and Mediterranean seascapes!

Next stop: Milan! But wait, getting there isn’t just a straight shot; it’s a scenic coastal joyride! You’ll be cruising through places like Genoa, San Remo, and Arenzano—because why not add a touch of “Italian Riviera” to our train ride? Now, THIS is train travel at its finest! Sit back, relax, and let those jaw-dropping views do all the talking. 🚂🌊🍿👀

We arrive in Milan early evening — finally, the moment we’ve all been craving for: Pizza time! 🍕🎉 Sure, French cuisine is fabulous, but there’s something about that cheesy, doughy goodness that calls out to the soul. So, we’ll head into town for a group dinner, courtesy of your guide.

Welcome to Italy, where pizza dreams come true! 🇮🇹✨ And hey, let’s not forget to give a big ol’ thanks to France and Belgium for the epic journey so far. Grazie and merci for the memories! 🙌🥐

Included activities: Pizza frenzy
Accommodation: Triple and quad rooms in city hotel

Day 10: Nice to Milan

We are continuing on with the epic U. Italian Pizza & Pasta giro this afternoon. But, this morning there is time to sleep in, catch-up on your social media, or deal with some domestic duties such as your washing!

We reconnect this afternoon and meet the new U. travellers joining us for Italy!Get ready for a passionate love affair with food, wine, larger than life local characters, and stunning architecture set in equally stunning landscapes.📸🍝🎉🍕🚀

After our introductions with the newbies, we hit the cobbled streets around the Piazza del Duomo in search of a local pizzeria, because why wait until tomorrow when you can have pizza now? Luigi, if you’re listening, step aside, because us U. Travellers take our pizza very seriously! 🇮🇹 🍝🍷 🍕 😄 🕺

Included activities: Meet & Greet with your U.Guide and fellow travellers.  Evening tour of Milan central with a vino in the cobbled Piazza del Duomo
Accomodation: Twins and triples in Milan hotel

Day 11: Milan

Village life on the Ligurian Coast

Get ready to kick off this adventure in style! Our first stop? The oh-so-pretty coastal town of Riomaggiore! Riomaggiore is like that charming friend who always knows how to strike a pose for Instagram. It’s part of the famous Cinque Terre, where five interconnected villages of colourful buildings stack up amongst the rocky cliffs like lego, separated by steep narrow lanes crammed with bars full of wonderful seafood goodies, specialty pastries, and… oh, it might be a good time to mention the thick black hot scrumptious syrup the Italians called cafe.

Framed by dramatic seaside vistas, this is a  memorable way to dive into your Italian dream tour! We’ll stroll along the cliff tops, poke our heads into local shops and explore the historical centre cut into the rocks, immersing ourselves in the laid-back coastal vibes.

As day turns into night, we’re in for a real treat. We’ll snag a bottle of vino, and maybe even some local bruschetta, and watch the sun do a graceful swan dive into the Ligurian Sea from the Riomaggiore harbour. It’s an Insta-moment you won’t want to miss to capture the village’s unique charm. So, get ready for some mesmerising sights, both in your camera and on your plate!

Included activities: Hiking the historical villages of Cinque Terra
Accomodation: Twins and triples at a Riomaggiore hotel

Day 12: Milan - Riomaggiore

We are being amazing people in a beautiful city

Rise and shine! The talented Mr. Ripley is bidding adieu to Riomaggiore (the movie was filmed here in case the reference didn’t quite ring a bell) and leading us southward to the grand Italian capital. But not without a planned pit stop mid-journey, to check out the world-famous Leaning Tower of Pisa. Prepare yourselves for an iconic and absolute must-do tourist action: that must have photo of you truly attempting to hold up the tower!!

We roll into the ‘Eternal City’, with its spectacular architecture this afternoon.. After checking into our cool inner city hostel, we’ll embark on a culinary adventure in a private cooking class. Get ready to unravel the secrets of crafting outstanding fettuccine and that devilishly moreish Italian dessert – tiramisu with a localRoman chef.

After whipping up both meals, it’s time to kick back, relax, savour the company, and sip on a glass of local red wine while your pasta is lovingly drenched in a sauce of your choosing. Then, your meal culminates with a sweet finale – your homemade tiramisu, all of this happening in the cozy home of our incredible local Italian hosts! So get ready for a day of travel that’s as delicious as it is enthralling, all in the name of becoming honorary Italian chefs! 😄👩‍🍳🇮🇹 🍝🍰🍷 🏛️

Included activities: Visiting the Leaning Tower of Pisa, Italian cooking class
Accomodation: Triple and quad share in a funky Roman hostel

Day 13: Riomaggiore - Rome

A lesson in incredible history

Rome wasn’t built in a day, but hey, we’ll give it our best shot to see it all in one day! So, lace up those sneakers, stash that spare charger (you’ll need it), and brace yourself for a day of epic exploration in this time-traveling city. Rome, the city that’ll leave you breathless, with its bustling urban vibe and more monuments than you can shake a gladiator’s sword at, not to mention a gazillion churches, jaw-dropping fountains, and a mind-blowing archaeological heritage! 🏰

From the Colosseum to the Vatican, from the Trevi Fountain to cozy local trattorias – today is all about larger-than-life experiences and getting lost in the sea of culture.

We’ll explore from the crack of dawn until the stars come out, and then we’ll seek refuge in a local restaurant to devour a truly Italian pizza and wash it down with a brewski. Just remember, Rome wasn’t conquered in a day either, so get ready for an unforgettable whirlwind of history, art, and a fair share of gelato-induced happiness! 🇮🇹🍕🎨 🍦😂 😅

Included activities: Guided Rome walking tour
Accomodation: Triple and quad share funky Roman hostel

Day 14: Rome

From Roman Empire to Renaissance Revolution

Alright folks, we’re not exactly rising with the roosters today. We’re talking mid-morning exit here, as we bid arrivederci to the Italian capital of flare and set our sights northward to Florence, the powerhouse city of medieval Europe and ground zero for the Renaissance.

We’ll make our grand entrance early in the afternoon, leaving you plenty of time to tame your unruly backpacks and perhaps apply that much-needed splash of cologne or perfume (don’t worry, we won’t judge). Then, it’s time to hit the streets and explore Florence on foot.

Picture this: the old town of Florence is a bit like a charming maze of cobblestone streets that wind their way around famous spots like the Uffizi Gallery, the iconic Ponte Vecchio, the Duomo (you can’t miss it), and Piazzale Michelangelo (bring your camera and your best smize).

And for all you shopaholics out there, Florence is basically a retail therapy paradise, especially if you’re in the market for a leather jacket or bag. The leather markets here are some of the best in the world. So, get ready to stroll, shop, and soak in the city’s art, history, and seriously fashionable vibes! 🛍️🎨🇮🇹😂 📸

Included activities: Florence guided tour by your U.Guide
Accommodation: Superior triple rooms in boutique hostel

Day 15: Rome to Florence

Sunbaked villages and epic wine covered hillsides – under the Tuscan sun

When in Florence, you can’t just stick to the city streets, you’ve got to conquer those magnificent Tuscan hills like a boss! Under that Tuscan sun is some of the most awe-inspiring landscapes anywhere in the world.

We kick off the day at the crack of dawn because, you know, the early bird catches the worm, or in this case, the best grapes! Our mission? To uncover not one, but two totally rad wineries nestled in the jaw-dropping Chianti Hills on this half-day excursion.

Aside from being surrounded by the kind of pure Tuscan beauty that’ll make you want to break into song, we’re going to meet some of the coolest local winemakers who’ll spill the beans on their grapey secrets. We’ll amble through vineyards that are basically the definition of ‘Instagrammable’, and let’s not forget the best part – we get to taste some of the most delicious local wines and dine on mouthwatering, local produce. It’s a day spent deep in the heart of Italian wine and food, and that’s amore! 🍇🍷

We’ll roll back into Florence by mid-afternoon, where you’ll have the rest of the day to revisit all your favourite spots at your own leisurely pace. So whether it’s a rematch with David at the Galleria dell’Accademia, another flirty wink at the Ponte Vecchio, or maybe just maybe you have convinced yourself to look at that leather bag once more, you’ve got the time to make your Florentine fantasies come true! 🏛️ 🍇🍷🌿 😂🇮🇹

Included activities: Tuscan wine and food exploration
Accommodation: Accommodation: Superior triple rooms in boutique hostel

Day 16: Florence - Tuscan exploration

Onward to ‘la Serenissima’

Ladies and gentlemen, as we gear up for our later train to the jaw-dropping wonderland of Venice today, let me tell you, the morning is all yours for a blockbuster brunch and some last-minute shopping to bring back the quirkiest souvenirs for family and friends.

The journey to Venice is like something out of a travel magazine, and trust me, you want that window seat – the views of Tuscany and Emilia Romagna race by like picture perfect postcards!Venice, unlike any other place on Earth, is everything you could possibly dream up and then some!

Tonight, as soon as we drop our bags, we’ll navigate the labyrinth of narrow streets to find a truly local restaurant away from the tourist traps that’s as cozy as your grandma’s house, but with seafood to die for. Expect an Aperol Spritz🍹 to magically appear in your hand as you soak in the enchanting ambiance along one of those iconic canals.

It’s Venice, where we learn about chasing the shadow of the church tower (un’ombra di vino) and sink headfirst into this surreal, watery wonderland of love! 😮 🚤🍹🦐 🚆🏞️📸 💫😂🍽️🎉 👜

Included activities: Guided Venetian evening tour
Accommodation: Twin and triple hotel rooms on Grand Canal

Day 17: Florence to Venice

Blowing glass, canals and living like a local in Venice

Wakey-wakey, team! Today, you’re going all out – and by “all out,” we mean you’re going to walk, ferry, and gondola our way through the city of water, spending most of our time on the main island (had you realised we are on an island?) before we make a fashionably late Italian entrance to Murano.

As for sights, we’re not just ticking boxes, we’re basically emptying the entire checklist! We’ve got the Basilica San Marco, the Doges Palace (no actual doges, just fancy old dudes), the Canal Grande (you’ll feel like you’re in a Bond movie), the Ponti di Rialto, the Mercati di Rialto, and the Laguna di Venezia. Plus, we’ll throw in a few bonus surprises because, well, we are locals! And if, by some miracle, we still have legs that haven’t mutinied on us after lunch, we’re catching a ferry to Murano to witness the mind-boggling Venetian tradition of glass blowing at an artisan’s workshop. Expect the heat to be turned up, both literally and figuratively!

But wait, there’s more! Once we’re back on the main island, we’re going out with a bang – a sunset extravaganza over at Lido. After that, it’s a very local experience – a ‘giro di baccari’ back to our digs. What’s that? Think of it like a bar/food crawl – stopping at the local bars and cafes for a little finger food and an optional spritz, we wind our way through a maze of canals and streets nibbling like mice on the cheese trail. “I’m so full, but I can’t stop eating, it’s so nice!” 🍹🥂🎉🇮🇹😂 🔥

Included activities: Guided Venetian walking tour, glass blowing at an artisan workshop, giro di baccari
Optional activities: Gondola ride
Accommodation: Twin and triple hotel rooms

Day 18: Venice

The show’s not over until Juliet waves goodbye

Just because it’s the last day doesn’t mean we’re tuning out. After a sightseeing marathon yesterday that’d make even Usain Bolt break a sweat, we’re hitting the road (or tracks, rather) and making our way back to Milan mid-morning. But hold on to your gondolas, because we’re not leaving the train without a little pit stop in the incredible historical city of Verona! 🚂

Verona is home to the largest coliseum outside of Rome, and you guessed it, THE balcony that was made famous in Shakespears’ Romeo and Juilet. After exploring the stunning walled city of Verona, we’re back on the train, zooming through the rolling hills of the industrial north until we hit Milan late afternoon. 🏛️🍝🇮🇹

Its our last night of this epic Pizza & Pasta trip so lets hit town and celebrate in style!

Included activities: Verona walking tour
Accomodation: Twins and triples in a Milan hotel

Day 19: Venice to Milan

Arrivederci e buon viaggio

And, then just like that, ten-days have gone and unfortunately for those leaving us today it’s ‘arrivederci!’ Until we meet again, as they say Italian. And what a wonderful Italian trip it has been too. We have seen loads of old stuff, we tasted great wines, bad liquors, and interesting pizzas, we’ve laughed, your U. Guide has cried, but we all agree – we lurve Italy! 🌍✌️

But, for those continuing north with us into the Swiss Alps, there is time to sleep in, smash the Insta feed with all your wonderful Italian photos, phone home (yeah… nah) and if you’ve been too busy piling in the pasta, time to catch on on your washing. As this afternoon your next adventure begins! 📸🍝🎉

Day 20: Milan

We can help you!

This itinerary is a guide only. Given the spontaneous nature of our trips, our lack of control over the weather,
and many other factors that can effect a group, where we go and what we do each day may vary.

Is this trip all drinking?

Absolutely not. We realise it sounds like we are one big party with beers in Beligum and wine in France and so on. But, so many of our travellers do not actually drink at all. We like to try all the different specialties, but there is absolutely no need for you too if you don’t want to and you are certainly not missing out on anything if you don’t drink. U. trips are about learning new cultures, improving yourself, getting immersed in the local way of life – we are not about drinking your way around Europe!

How common is access to ATMs?

There will be ATMs at every destination on this trip. It can cost up to €5 euro per transaction to draw money out so we suggest you draw a little bit more at one time.

How much should I budget for meals and spending money?

If you are a big boy with a healthy appetite, you may need to budget on 40-60 € a day for food + (some) alcoholic drinks. You’ll get well fed for that as an average pasta dish costs, depending on the restaurant, between 10 and 15 € a dish in France and €7 and €12 in Italy. Most travellers can travel for around 30 to 40 € per day.

In both France and Italy we also like to grab a fresh baguette and some local cheeses and salamis, or fresh fruit, from the local markets and make our own meals. This works well on the trains too where we often travel over lunch time.

How do I get to Amsterdam and from Milan

Talk to the U. crew as we can book you flights directly to Amsterdam or from Milan from almost any major city in the world. As well there is a lot of discount airlines in Europe such as Ryan Air, Easy Jet, German Wings and Volotea that fly around Europe. The Eurostar train goes from London to Amsterdam, and there is also an excellent overnight train from Milan to Paris should you need them.

What if I’m allergic to Gluten?

Finding GF easily in Italy is an exception rather than the norm. Italian cuisine will always have a meat or fish dish so there is always food available. Your U.Guide will know how to ask for a GF option so stick close to them and remind them early!

Always included: 

  • Travel with a company dedicated to working towards 100% climate-neutral travel
  • Professional travel experts and local guides
  • We do all the planning for you
  • Your own personal travel profile with program, add-ons, flight tickets etc.
  • Packing list and advice
  • Advice and assistance with booking flights
  • Possibility of purchasing cancellation and travel insurance
  • All entrances and fees for experiences, as listed in the itinerary
  • All tour accommodation

Experiences:

  • 5 countries, 17 cities/towns
  • All accommodation and train transport – no extra supplements
  • Amazing guided walking tours in Amsterdam, Bruge, Paris, Lyon, Avignon, Nice, Milan, Pisa, Rome, Florence, and Venice
  • Day trip to Eze, Monaco, Cannes and the French Riviera
  • Segway and wine tour in Lyon, the gastronomic capital of France
  • UNESCO sites across Western Europe
  • Games of pétanque, drinks on the coast, sunsets and sunrises, Promenade des Anglais, Roman theatres and historical bridges
  • Picturesque train rides through the Rhone Valley and the Provence-Alpes-Côte-d’Azur
  • Perfume making and baguette baking
  • Evening Cruise on the Seine, Paris
  • Belgium chocolates and Belgium beer breweries
  • Tuscan wine and food explorer tour
  • Murano artisan glass blowing
  • Cocktails and spritzer tasting
  • Learn to cook like a local in Rome
  • Leather markets in Florence
  • Leaning Tower of Pisa
  • Cinque Terra village hike
  • Juliet’s balcony in Verona
  • Local giro do baccari in Venice

Optional Activities:

  • Moulin Rouge cabaret
  • The secrets of French baking experience

U. Impact! Experience:

  • River cleanup in Paris

Transport:

  • Trains
  • Bus
  • Segway
  • Boat
  • Feet

You will need a backpack – cobble streets and ancient stairways do not like wheelie bags. We do a lot of walking on our European trip exploring the back streets and sometimes we will also jump off a train (once it has stopped) with our backpacks to grab some fresh food at a local market or grab a great photo of a falling down ancient building etc. You don’t need to be super fit but we will often walk to our accommodation from the train station with our bags and exploring on your feet all day can be tiring so bring good walking shoes too.

Combine or upgrade your trip with some of these trips

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Feast on French delicacies, indulge in Italian flavours, conquer Swiss Alps, and revel in Bavarian charm, all in one epic 4-week European train adventure!

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An Alpine adventure, from Milan’s pasta paradise to Switzerland’s majestic peaks, Zurich’s hip culture, Bavaria’s beer halls, and Austria’s historic charm—all wrapped in a whirlwind of cheese, breathtaking vistas, and adrenaline-fuelled escapades!

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KNOWLEDGE IS POWER WHEN USED WELL

Your expected footprint on this trip: 0.42 tons of CO2

(not including flights). Find out more about our commitment to net-zero travel and how you can lower your footprint.

Accommodation: 258.40 kgs Approx: 19 nights @ 13.6kg per night Transport (trains): 85.8 kgs Approx: 91g per passenger km Transport (Scooters & buses): 13.33 kgs Approx: 65kgs @ 20.5kg per 100km Food & Drinks: 13.5 kgs Approx: 700g per day Included activities: 10kgs Segway, cooking classes, river cruise,, wine tasting, local transport, glass blowing

Your local investment on this trip: €3,400

The average expected amount our U.Traveller’s spend that goes directly into the local economy.

Find out more about our love for supporting local businesses

Why Choose a U. Trip

  • The only tour company carbon calculating and offsetting every part of your U.Trip, as part of your cost! From the flights, to all carbon costs associated with your accommodation, activities, meals and transport.  This means you are choosing to travel responsibly with a company dedicated to putting People + Planet first!  U. have simplified the decision making so you can focus on just choosing the best trip for your adventures!
  • More inclusions, head to head, than other trips meaning you get more value for your spend, you see more and you experience more!
  • Invest in yourself and your future with a U.Trip that seamlessly combines the fun, excitement and adventure of gap year and backpacker travel with Impact Experiences that add value to your ‘self’ and your CV.
  • U. creates the opportunity for you to challenge your own understanding of the world with first hand experiences of local communities and the challenges facing them.
  • A team with over 100 years collective travel experience

Would you like one of our U.Team to give you a call?

Let us know when and we will make it happen.

We can help you!

Would you like one of our U.Team to give you a call?

Let us know when and we will make it happen.

We can help you!

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