This tour consists of 2 parts. A morning at the Vatican including a tour of the Sistine chapel and St Peters while the afternoon was a bus tour to three other Vatican Churches. Although the morning tour was incredibly crowded, our lovely Irish guide Rachael was magnificent. Her patient and detailed commentary never waned as she carefully negotiated thronging crowds to point out important features. Her knowledge was prodigious and she shared it with such passion and poise that you were riveted to her in spite of the crowds.She was sensational. The afternoon tour although less gripping and dramatic was professionally conducted by Daniella whose knowledge and presentation was excellent. she gave people plenty of time for photographs and questions. I would suggest that the afternoon tour is better suited to die hard Catholics as there were so many ignorant questions from a clearly ill informed group.
Given the heat and horrendous crowds this was a great tour. Maria demonstrated superb knowledge and patience in navigating the group around the thronging ancient sites. Without a guided tour much of the sites would remain a pile of rubble but she animated the places and the people who occupied them and really created for us a vivid picture of the glories of Ancient Rome. the afternoon tour was enthusiastically led by the vibrant Nina who shared her love of Rome by leading us to the great highlights of the Pantheon, Trajen's column, The Spanish Steps, The Trevi Fountain and much more. We did this at the end of our time in Rome and wished we had begun with it. On all of our tours in Rome we found the guides to be highly professional and superbly qualified. We were really enriched by all of the tours and can only imagine what we would have missed if we had attempted it all on our own.
This tour provides an enjoyable boat tour to the other islands which gives you a different perspective on life in the lagoon. The Murano stop off is really a marketing pitch as you are given a brief demonstration of glass blowing before being shunted into a show room before being hustled onto the boat. Burano is a lovely point of interest which requires more time to potter and soak up the ambience. Torecello is a bit of a wasteland and could be excluded for more time in Murano. Nonetheless on a lovely day there is much for the eyes to feast on when time is limited.
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