Classic Tuscany & Puccini Opera Festival
- 02 Aug
- 02 Aug
Join us and RTÉ lyric fm’s Marty Whelan for the opera trip of a lifetime. On this this magical holiday, we'll celebrate the 100th anniversary of the Verona Arena Opera, explore the historic towns that hug the coast of Lake Garda and stroll through the quaint streets and squares, all set in the tranquil surroundings of blue waters and towering mountains. We’ll experience an unforgettable and spell bounding performance of Verdi's Aida at the Arena di Verona. First performed in 1891, this classic opera is about choosing between love and loyalty; the opera’s music is full of Italianate melody. We’ll take a guided boat trip of Lake Garda to view some of the beautiful sites and places of interest on the lake, including stops in the towns of Malcesine and Limone. With the serene waters of Lake Garda and the classic Italian romance of Venice, this trip to Italy is the perfect combination of opera, culture and history.
Upon arrival in Italy, we will be met in the arrivals area of the airport by our local representative who will accompany us to our hotel. As we travel to our hotel, our guide will share some information about the local region, suggest activities for us to enjoy and answer any questions we may have.
After breakfast, join your guide for a short walking tour of Riva. Following this, we will board a private boat for a unique sightseeing tour. Our first stop will be at Limone, a small village backed by lemon groves, with waterside cafes and cobbled streets lined with shops. Afterwards, with fantastic panoramas and a spectacular mountain backdrop, we travel onwards for a visit to picturesque Malcesine, famed for its medieval Scaligero Castle. The boat will then return to Riva del Garda, but if you wish to stay on, you may return by public bus or boat later in the afternoon (this will be at your own expense). If remaining in Malcesine, we recommend a trip in the cable car which will take you 1,800 metres above sea level, with spectacular views. Please note that this schedule refers is weather-dependent. Please note that this schedule refers is weather-dependent.
Please Note : For holidays based in Limone, a coach transfer has been arranged from your hotel to Riva del Garda, where there will be a short walking tour and some free time before beginning your boat tour.
Today, we have a full day to relax and enjoy Lake Garda's charms. Shop, sightsee at your own pace or sit by the lake and take in the incredible views. You can take a water taxi across the lake to explore at your leisure and your local guide will be happy to suggest activities to suit your interests and advise which highlights are a must see.
Optional Excursion - The Italian Alps
Your local guide will offer an optional excursion to the Italian Alps with a traditional lunch included. (Subject to minimum numbers)
We will have the morning free to relax and explore the surroundings of our hotel before we will be joined by Marty Whelan for an introduction to tonight’s opera followed by lunch.
This afternoon, we will take a guided transfer to Verona for a spellbinding night at the Opera in the historic Arena di Verona with a performance of Verdi's Aida. 2023 is a special year as the Verona Opera celebrates the 100th anniversary and tonight’s performance is a new production for the opening night of the festival.
Aida is an Opera in four acts, first performed in Cairo in 1871. The story is set in Ancient Egypt and is about an Ethiopian princess, Aida, who is captured and enslaved by the Pharoah. An Egyptian military commander, Radamès, struggles to choose between his love for Aida and his loyalty to the Pharaoh.
Following the performance, we will return to our hotel.
Today, you will have the day at leisure. In the heart of Riva del Garda is the Piazza III Novembre, surrounded by 14th century porticos and the Apponale Tower, a former defence tower and World War I prison. This square is a beautiful place to explore during your free time. Don't forget to check with your local guide who will be delighted to suggest further activities to suit your interests.
On today's full day excursion we will explore the enchanting warren of canals, alleys and squares that make up the fascinating city of Venice. Known as 'La Serenissima' or The most Serene,Venice is a prized jewel in Italy's glorious crown. Witness its famous landmarks such as St. Mark's Square, the stunning Gothic building of Ca’ d’Oro, and the imposing Palazzo Ducale. Admire 16th and 17th century art in the Galleria Franchetti and take a photograph on the Ponte di Rialto. You'll have free time to admire the piazzas, bridges and ornate dwellings that adorn the quaysides of Venice's extensive network of canals, before returning to your hotel in Lake Garda.
Please note that for holidays departing in July and August, this excursion will depart your hotel in the late morning, stopping for a light lunch (included en route, before travelling onwards to Venice in the afternoon and returning to Lake Garda in the evening.
Spend your last day of leisure enjoying the beautiful lakeside setting, shopping for last minute souvenirs or enjoying a coffee, gelato or glass of wine at a local cafe.
We will be transferred to the airport with guide assistance for our flight home.
Are you looking for the perfect location to start a love affair with Italy? The Novel Traveller, Michelle Jackson, enjoys some gems with Travel Department on a guided tour of Lake Garda, Verona and Venice.