Ancient history meets Greek mythology meets pasta on this adventure through Italy and Greece. Travel back in time in Athens, geek out on all things Zeus in Olympia and Delphi, then have your own personal Renaissance in Rome and Florence.
Channeling ancient goddesses atop the Acropolis
Entering Mycenae through the 3,000-year-old Lion’s Gate
Eating the cacio e pepe you typically dream about
Tossing a coin into the Trevi Fountain (tip: right hand over left shoulder)
Savoring gelato as you people watch in a Tuscan piazza
What you'll get
Round-trip flights & airport transfers (or book 'em yourself)
13 nights in handpicked accommodations
Expert Tour Director
24/7 support from our travel gurus
2 insider Italian-city tours with local guides
Tour of the Acropolis in Athens
- Day 1: Overnight Flight
Board your overnight flight to Athens, the cradle of Western Civilization and home to some of the greatest monuments of the ancient world. Also gyros. Don’t forget about the gyros.
- Day 2: Arrive in Athens
Welcome to Athens! 2,500 years ago, it was kind of a happening place, and still is today—with fewer people in togas walking around. It’s a vibrant metropolis, and a perfect jumping-off point for your journey through the Greece. When the sun goes down, expect to see people socializing in the streets. It’s how they roll.
In the evening, it's time for your Welcome Dinner. Afterwards, you’re free to take the party elsewhere!
- Meet an EF representative at the airport
- Transfer to your accommodations and check in
- Receive the latest schedule from your Tour Director
- Meet your fellow travelers as they arrive
- Day 3: Tour Athens
Today, take a VIP tour of Athens with a local guide. You’ll climb high above the city to what’s left of ancient Athens, also known as the Acropolis. It’s here where you’ll find the remnants of 2,500 year-old buildings and sculptures, which is quite impressive when you consider things built today last about 3,498 years less than that. Most of what you see was planned and executed by Pericles, who was named, “the first citizen of Athens.” Today, there are a few more citizens in Athens—around 660,000—who can thank him for this energetic and bustling city.
- Enjoy the incredible ancient ruins of the Acropolis with a local guide
- Pay your respects to the patron goddess of the city (and her namesake sneakers) at the Temple of Athena Nike
- Find yourself speechless in the presence of the Parthenon—at nearly 2,500 years old, it is undoubtedly one of the most iconic and storied structures in the world
Free time suggestions
Psiri: Think of Psiri as the Brooklyn of Athens: impossibly hip, and filled with opportunities to dance, drink, or just hang out.
Loukoumades: Sample a food that sounds better with each word: a deep fried donut covered in honey and sprinkled with cinnamon.
- Day 4: Travel to Kalabaka
Head to the town of Kalabaka, located directly underneath the massive Meteora, a rock formation that’s a delight to the eyes due to its steep, jagged peaks that stand more than 1,000 feet high. The city has a modern feel, since it burned down during WWII and was rebuilt in the 1940s. However, there is evidence that an ancient Greek settlement was here as far back as the 20th century…BC.
Free time suggestions
Wander through town: Check out the quaint neighborhoods in town, passing by churches, shops, and places to eat homemade sausage, pies, and a local specialty called spatoula AKA Greek pudding.
Shop for souvenirs: Grab yourself a gift for the folks back home—hand-made wooden objects and religious icons are very popular. Spatoula is not quite as popular—pudding doesn’t travel well.
- Day 5: Explore Meteora Monasteries
Now is the time for this big show. The Meteora monasteries. On top of some of those limestone rocks you’ve been admiring, are functioning monasteries (with what one can only assume is questionable cell service). The nuns and monks that reside on Meteora have chosen to spend their time praying and contemplating life, and you get to see what it’s all about. Get ready to feel the greatest sense of harmony and relaxation of the trip, while simultaneously overcoming that fear of heights.
- Drive, walk, and constantly wipe the sweat from your palms as you make your way to the tops of the giant rocks for breathtaking views of the Greek landscape
- Meet the nuns and monks of some of the most isolated monasteries in the world
- Clear your head, feel the fresh mountain air, and imagine removing yourself from society to live up here
- Feel like James Bond, minus the whole fighting off bad guys part—the 1981 movie "For Your Eyes Only" was filmed here
- Day 6: Travel to Delphi
Your journey continues to Delphi. According to Greek mythology, Zeus sent two eagles to discover the center of the world, and they landed in Delphi. Today, it is a fascinating look into the past, and a great excuse to up your Greek mythology trivia game. Beginning in the 6th century BC, Delphi began hosting the Pythian Games, similar to the Olympic Games, but with more emphasis on art and dance (i.e. more feelings).
- Hop aboard a bus towards Delphi
- Visit the Sanctuary of Apollo, once the most important sacred site in Greece and home to the Oracle AKA the guy with all the answers
- Lay your eyes upon The Omphalos of Delphi, a big marble stone and symbol of Apollo that Zeus apparently threw from the sky
- Gawk at Mount Parnassus, the limestone mountain towering 8,000 feet over the city, which was home to the mythological winged horse, Pegasus
- Day 7: Travel to Olympia
Head to Olympia, the ancient site of the Olympics. Before it became a weeks-long international competition sponsored by soft drink and insurance companies, the Olympic games began as a way to honor Zeus. (Did he even lift, bro?) Olympia today is a UNESCO World Heritage Site, and there is a lot to see and appreciate. From the views of the idyllic countryside, to the remains of countless temples and ancient buildings, this might just turn out to be the best ancient city experience you’ve ever had.
- Arrive in Olympia, surrounded by the remains of the ancient city from nearly 4,000 years ago
- Tour the site with a local guide who may or may not challenge you to a foot race to get in the Olympic spirit
- Admire the (literally) sculpted abs of Greek and Roman gods in the Archeological Museum
- Stand in what’s left of the very first Olympic stadium, and wave to your imaginary fans in the imaginary stands
- Day 8: Travel to Nafplio Region via Mycenae and Epidaurus
It’s time to leave the big city life behind and head west to Peloponnesus, a peninsula so beautiful, it will make you wonder why everyone isn’t following you there. You’re going to the region of Nafplio, but on your way, you’ll stop for tours of Mycenae and Epidaurus.
- Stop in Epidaurus, and visit an outdoor theater recognized for such impeccable acoustics, people can practically hear your thoughts
- Follow a guide through Mycenae, known for the Bronze Age Lion Gate, the original entrance to the city, and wonder why your city can’t have a cool entrance like that
- Pinch yourself (not too hard) as you arrive in Nafplio, a picture-perfect seaside town where you’ll spend the rest of the day
- Visit the castle of Palamidi, located on the crest of a hill overlooking the city and the Argolic Gulf
- Day 9: Travel to Athens + Fly to Rome
You’ve got a big travel day ahead. First, it’s back to where this adventure started, in Athens. And then you’ll hop on a plane and make your way to Rome, Italy’s capital city that is bursting at the seams with energy. Locals fill the streets, day and night, usually doing something that involves eating or drinking.
- Travel by bus to Athens
- Board your flight, bound for Rome, and prep your taste buds for all the Italian cuisine that’s coming your way
- Arrive in Rome and settle in for the night
- Day 10: Tour Rome
They say all roads lead to Rome, but once you’re there you quickly realize that all roads actually lead to restaurants. Take the morning to satisfy your cravings and sip some espresso, then experience everything ancient Rome has to offer with a local guide.
- Tour the city with a local guide who will show you why Rome is one of the most legendary cities in Europe.
- Experience the heart of ancient Rome with a visit to the Forum, once a hub of activity for the city.
- See the ruins of several Roman temples, including the Temple of the Vestal Virgins.
- Day 11: Free Day in Rome + Optional Visit to the Vatican + Included Dinner
Today you get to explore centuries worth of culinary perfection, unbelievable architecture, and local fashion on your own. And let it be said, Rome looks goooood for being 2,000 years old. (It must moisturize.) Shop, eat, drink, and talk like an Italian (with your hands) during your free day. Embrace the culture and indulge in carbs during your last day in the Eternal City.****
- Enjoy an included dinner in Rome.
Free time suggestions
Piazza Navona: Head over to Piazza Navona, one of Rome’s best-known public squares. Fountains, street performers, shops, restaurants, and so much more. Hangout, sip coffee, and embrace the atmosphere of this outdoor hub.
Trevi Fountain: Rumor has it, if turn your back to the Trevi Fountain and toss a coin over your shoulder, it guarantees you’ll return to the Eternal City. Throw in a second coin, and you’ll not only come back, but also find love. (Significant other not guaranteed by EF Ultimate Break.)
A Visit to the Vatican (extra cost)
Visit the Pope’s house: Vatican City. Take a guided tour of the Vatican Museum and St. Peter's Basilica, and get your dose of art history up close and personal—viewing Michelangelo's famed Sistine Chapel frescoes.
Please note: The Vatican is closed on Sundays. In the event that the itinerary day containing this optional lands on a Sunday for your departure, the optional will take place the day before.
This excursion is pre-book only; if your trip is less than twenty days away, please call 800-766-2645 to purchase.
- Day 12: Travel to Florence via Orvieto
Travel to Florence via Orvieto. Goodbye bustling city, hello Tuscan countryside. Florence was king during the Renaissance, and it still holds on to that artsy, fashionable, cultural vibe today.
- Board your private coach, bound for Florence
- Stop in Orvieto, a quaint Italian hill town perched atop a rock cliff
- Marvel at the artistry of the facade of Orvieto’s stunning cathedral, built in 1290 (no, that’s not a typo—it’s really that old)
- Arrive in Florence and begin exploring
- Day 13: Tour Florence + Optional Tuscan Wine Tasting
You’ve got a full day in Florence, the compact capital of the Tuscany region known for its quaint, cobblestone streets and impressive artwork from Renaissance geniuses like Michelangelo and Donatello. Join a local guide as you walk to some of the most famous sights in the city while taking mental notes of the best smelling restaurants you pass for later. After all, it is Italy, and food is kind of a big deal.
- Take note of the Piazza della Signoria, home of the Uffizi Gallery and the world’s most famous nude man, Michelangelo’s David
- March your way across Ponte Vecchio, a medieval stone bridge with shops built along it (formerly butchers, now jewelers and souvenir shops)
- Visit the final resting place of some of the most illustrious Italians such as Michelangelo, Galileo, and Machiavelli at the Basilica di Santa Croce
Free time suggestions
Pitti Palace: Pitti Palace once housed the dukes of Tuscany and their extensive art collections, these days the dukes are gone but the art remains. Be sure to check out the statues in Boboli Gardens out back.
Vivoli Gelateria: Would it really be a trip to Italy without gelato? The answer is no. Vivoli Gelateria is the local institution to go to for this frozen treat.
Tuscan Wine Tasting (extra cost)
Some of the world’s best wine come from Tuscany, and you get to sample some at a scenic winery. Next head to the medieval walled town of San Gimignano, home to the world-famous Gelateria di Piazza gelato shop.
Why wait? Save money by booking this optional excursion before your trip departs.
- Day 14: Free Day in Florence + Farewell Dinner
Regarded as the birthplace of the Italian Renaissance, Tuscany is known for its landscapes, history, and artistic legacy. It is also an area known for its wine, notably Chianti, which is sure to come in handy later when you have plenty of free time on your hands.
Share some last laughs (and maybe shed a few tears) at an included farewell dinner with the group.
Free time suggestions
San Miniato al Monte: Snap the perfect picture of Florence’s skyline after hiking up to San Miniato al Monte. No filter needed.
Shopping in Florence: The area between Ponte Vecchio and the Duomo is ideal for fashionistas and foodies alike.
- Day 15: Fly Home
Translation: Goodbye, friends. Your next destination awaits—home. Before you head to the airport, enjoy your last few moments together. Take one more group photo. Grab that final drink. (Fine, maybe a couple of drinks.) But this isn’t goodbye. It’s “See you later.” The only question is, where?
EXTEND YOUR TRIP 2 WAYS
1. Double the fun
A lot of our trips line up back to back! Give us a call—we can help you add another and save big while you're at it.
2. Go ahead or stay behind
Extending your trip is easy! During checkout, you'll have the option to fly to (or from) the gateway of your choice for an additional fee. We'll adjust your flights accordingly, but you'll be responsible to take care of your transportation, hotels, and other logistics outside of tour.
Note: Depending on your desired gateways, additional fees may apply.
Overall rating: 5 out of 5
Based on 1 authentic traveler reviews
Italy/Greece reviewAnonymous, traveled Oct. 2023
Great experience. I was exited for Italy but had just as much fun in Greece. The itinerary was full of great activities but also left enough free time to explore things on your own. Was a relief to not have to plan anything.