2007 Southern France and Italy

In the summer of 2007 the youth choir toured Nice, Monaco,Venice, Florence, Piza, Siena, and Rome.

Click here to see photos from the tour

Waiting to transfer flights in London, England.

Thursday June 28, 2007

11:00am     Arrival at your pick-up location of your climate controlled, washroom equipped, 47 passenger Cherry Bus Lines highway motor coach.  Charter # C11210

11:30am Depart for Pearson International Airport.

Evening departure from Pearson International Airport at 4:50pm on Air France flight #353 to Paris connecting in Paris to Air France flight #7702 at 11:00am to Nice. Dinner and breakfast are served en route.

Touring the city of Nice, on the Mediterranean coast.

Friday June 29, 2007

Welcome to Nice, the capital of the Côte d'Azur!  It is a centre of activities with its dining, shopping, sunbathing and swimming, movies, theaters, opera, museums or just strolling along the Promenade des Anglais.

Upon arrival at 11:00am you will be greeted by a local tour escort and depart for your accommodation.

2:00pm Approximate time of arrival at your Hotel Mercure Grimaldi. LOCATION: 6 rue Grimaldi. TEL: 33 4 93877 007

The Nice Opera House. We came across it while exploring the city.

The Nice Opera House. We came across it while exploring the city.

At 3:45pm meet your local tour guide and local coach at the hotel for your guided walking/coach tour of Nice. You will visit Holy Trinity Church, Ciemez, the Flower Market, Promenade des Anglais, the old and Mediterranean city. DURATION: 3 hours. Guide: Christine Viesinger Mobile: 33 0 662206577

6:45pm Your tour guide will end your tour in front of the restaurant.

At 7:00pm Dinner at Restaurant Le Ligure. MENU: Tricolor salad (Tomatoes, mozzarella and Basil), Chicken with mushroom sauce, Profiteroles. Mineral water will be on the table. LOCATION: 15 rue Biscarra. TEL: 33 4 93 13 06 08

This evening will be at leisure to visit places of interest with the help of your tour escort , transfer by foot to your accommodation.

The whole crew with Nice in the background.

The whole crew with Nice in the background.

Saturday June 30, 2007

8:00am Breakfast at your hotel.

9:00am Free time to explore Nice for the day.

3:00pm Meet at the lobby of your hotel.

At 3:15pm depart by foot for your performance with your tour escort.

4:00pm Perform at Kiosk a Musique. LOCATION: Jardin Albert 1ere.

Performance at the Music Kiosk in the park.

4:45pm Depart for Monaco ( 45 minutes)

Welcome to Monaco! The city on a rock, was created in 1866, in the reign of Prince Charles III who gave it, its name.

5:30pm Arrive at the Monaco Cathedral and warm up for your performance.

6:00pm Perform during Mass.  SPECIAL INSTRUCTIONS: Group will perform 4 songs (Entrance song, Offertorio, Communion and final).

7:00pm Rest of the evening to have dinner at your own cost and free time to explore Monaco. Visit Condamine Market and Rue Princess Caroline Pedestrian Mall. See Monaco Opera House, Prince's Palace, Place du Palais, Monaco Cathedral. Lunch at your own cost.

9:30pm Return by coach to Nice for the night.

Day trip to Monaco where we performed in the cathedral that Princess Grace was married in.

Sunday July 1, 2007

8:00am Breakfast at your hotel.

8:45am Group will meet in the lobby to load luggage onto coach.

At 9:30am depart for Venice (8 hour drive), rest stops will be made en route. Lunch at your own cost.  

Welcome to Venice, there is not another city in the world like it.  Its complex array of narrow streets and waterways lead to spacious squares and the Grand Canal.  The city overflows with charm and atmosphere diminishing the reality of its perilous slow decline, a fact that oddly enhances its magical allure.  Famous poets and artists have used their craft to relate its beauty to the world.  It is brimming with great art and architecture.

Dinner in Venice!

5:30pm Upon arrival at Piazzale Roma in Venice group will transfer luggage to Trasbagagli boat and walk to their accommodation. Your luggage will then be transferred to your accommodation.

6:00pm Approximate time of arrival at Hotel Basilea. LOCATION: S. Croce - Rio Marin 817. TEL : 39 041 718 477.

This evening is at leisure, dinner at your own cost.

Exploring Venice!

Monday July 2, 2007

8:00am Breakfast at your hotel.

This morning at 9:00am meet your local tour guide at the hotel and participate in a guided walking tour of Venice.  Because Venice is a series of more than 100 islands connected by bridges it is necessary to walk to most places.  Your tour guide will show you the Bridge of Sighs, Palace of Doges, Clock Tower, Rialto Bridge lined with rows of shops and Piazza San Marco which is famous the world over.  Sit in one of the sidewalk cafés and sample Venetian pastries. Visit the San Marco Basilica. The first basilica was burned in 976 during a popular revolt against the doge Pietro Candiano IV but was restored under his successor, Doge Domenico Contarini, the present basilica was completed in 1071.

Taking some photos in the piazza (square) of St. Mark's.

SPECIAL INSTRUCTION: Tour guide is not allowed to guide inside of San Marco Basilica. In order to enter group should be dressed appropriately (covered from knee upwards, shoulders covered and covered up to the neck) otherwise the group may be refused entrance. DURATION: 2 hours. Guide: Daniela Cominotto Mobile: 39 338 699 2890

11:00am End your tour at San Marco Square and enjoy free time for lunch at your own cost.

At 1:30pm transfer by vaparetto to the island of Murano. (This is the only public boat in Venice) Depart from San Marco square take the No 1 local line which zigzags between 20 stops, it is popular with the tourists as it offers a leisure tour of the Grand Canal.

A trip to neighboring island of Moreno to buy some Venetian glass. 

At 2:30pm visit the Glass Factory, glass together with gondolas and canals, is one of the beloved trademarks of Venice. DURATION: 30 minutes.

The rest of the afternoon will be at leisure to visit either Murano or return by vaparetto back to San Marco square.

6:30pm Meet at the San Marco Basilica and walk together for dinner.

Enjoying a gondola ride through the narrow canals in Venice.

7:00pm Dinner at Restaurant La Valigia. MENU: Lasagna, Scallops with vegetables, Tiramisu. Mineral water will be on the table. SPECIAL INSTRUTIONS: Located by San Marco square. LOCATION: San Marco 4697.

This evening will be at leisure to visit places of interest.

Tuesday July 3, 2007

7:00am Breakfast at your hotel.

8:00am Load your luggage on the Trasbagagli boat in front of your hotel and depart by foot to Piazzale Roma to load your luggage onto your coach.

At 9:00am depart by coach for Pisa (5 hour drive)

1:30pm Arrive at Pisa and enjoy free time to purchase lunch at your own cost.

2:10pm Meet in front of the Tower of Pisa.

2:20pm Visit the famous 13th century Leaning Tower.  The tower stands on the Piazza del Duomo, also known as Campo dei Miracoli (Field of Miracles).  SPECIAL INSTRUCTIONS: Group will be split into 3 at 2:20pm - 10 people, at 2:40pm - 10 people, at 3:00pm - 7 people.

Giving the Leaning Tower of Pisa a little assistance!

At 3:30pm continue your drive to Florence.

Florence is a city of refinement and elegance with unparalleled art treasures.  It gave Italy its national language and is the cradle of Humanism and the Renaissance.  It was the home of the famous: Dante, Savonarola, Boccaccio, Machiavelli, the Medici family, Boticelli, Fra Angelico and Michelangelo.
5:00pm Approximate time of arrival at Hotel Byron. LOCATION: Via della Scala. TEL: 39 055 280 852

At 6:30pm meet at the lobby of the hotel and at 6:45pm depart by foot for dinner.

7:00pm Dinner at Restaurant Da I 5 Amici. MENU: Bruschetta, Tagliatelle with ham, Grilled entrecote with salad and potatoes, Ice Cream. Mineral water will be on the table. LOCATION: Via Cinatori 30. TEL: 39 055 239 6672.

Tonight will be at leisure.

Wednesday July 4, 2007

8:00am Breakfast at your hotel.

The replica of the Statue of David outside of City Hall, where the original stood when it was first commissioned. The original is now in the  Accademia Gallery.

At 10:00am meet your local tour guide at the lobby of the hotel and enjoy a guided walking tour of Florence and see sights such as the Arno River, Ponte Vecchio, Piazza della Repubblica, the Duomo, Piazza della Signoria, and the Pitti Palace. DURATION: 2 hours. Guide: TBA Emergency number: mobile: + 39 347 68 99 165

Visit the beautiful Basilica di Santa Croce, it holds its place in Piazza Santa Croce. Its facade is made from some more of that stunning multi-color marble that was used on the Duomo. The inside is grand and lavishly decorated, and the floor is covered with tombstones of famous Florentines.

The Pont de Vecchio (Bridge on the River Vecchio) in the late afternoon.

Continue on with a visit at 11:45am of the Galleria della Accademia, home of Michelangelo's David.  This powerful sculpture overshadows all other works in the museum.  However, in the connecting picture gallery is a collection of Tuscan masters - Botticelli and Perugino (teacher of Raphael). LOCATION: Via Ricasoli 58-60.

This afternoon and evening is at leisure to visit places of interest with your teachers.  Lunch and dinner at your own cost.

Thursday July 5, 2007

8:00am Breakfast at your hotel.

Performing in Santa Maria Del Fiore (the Duomo or Florence Cathedral) for an evening service.

Today is at leisure to visit places of interest with your teachers.  Lunch at your own cost.

4:15pm Meet back at the hotel to get ready for your performance.

5:00pm Depart by foot for the Cathedral. (20 minute walk)

6:00pm Perform during mass at Santa Maria Del Fiore. SPECIAL INSTRUCTIONS: Group will perform 4 songs (Entrance song, Offertorio, Communion and final) LOCATION: Piazza Duomo. TEL: 39 055 215380.

Dinner at your own cost and evening at leisure.

An afternoon exploring Siena.

Friday July 6, 2007

7:15am Breakfast at your hotel.

At 8:00am meet at the lobby of your hotel and load your luggage onto your coach.

Depart at 8:30am by private coach to Rome stop en route in Sienna. (1 hour and 30 minute drive)

En route, stop in Siena at 10:00am, built on three hills, maintaining intact its medieval appearance characterized by narrow winding streets and noble buildings. See the important monuments of Siena including: Piazza del Campo, one of the most beautiful medieval squares in Italy, Palazzo Pubblico overlooked by the bold Torre del Mangia and Palazzo Sansedoni; in Piazza del Duomo lie the Duomo (12th-14th century), one of the best examples of Gothic in Italy.
12:30pm Lunch at your own cost.

St. Paul's Cathedral in Vatican City. (The head church for Catholics around the world.)


Continue your drive to Rome at 2:30pm. (3 hours and 30 minute drive)
Buon Giorno Roma.  Welcome to the eternal city!  Rome, founded 2700 years ago on seven hills near the banks of the River Tiber, has grown into a city of over three million people.  Roads in Rome are narrow, winding and usually lead to a square or Piazza.  Most of the major sights lie within the city wall in 16 areas all easily accessed with a combination of walking and public transportation.

5:00pm Approximate time of arrival at Hotel Portamaggiore. LOCATION: Piazza porta Maggiore 25. TEL: 39 06 702 7927.

6:30pm Meet at the lobby of your hotel and depart for dinner by foot.

7:00pm Dinner at La Gallina Bianca. MENU: Pasta with eggplant, escalopes, mixed salad and ice cream. Water will be on the table. LOCATION: Via Antonio Rosmini 9. TEL: 39 06 702 7927

Saturday July 7, 2007

7:00am Breakfast at the hotel.

At 7:45am meet in the lobby of the hotel and depart by coach to the Vatican.

The interior of St. Paul's

Upon arrival at the Vatican meet your local guide at the entrance. SPECIAL INSTRUCTIONS: Group will have to line up for the tickets.

10:00am Guided tour of St. Peter's Cathedral and the Vatican Museums.  As the site where St. Peter was martyred and buried, the Vatican became the residence of the Popes who succeeded him.  The great Basilica of St. Peter's attracts visitors from all over the world.  The Vatican's position as state within a state was guaranteed by the Lateran Treaty of 1929 and is the centre of power for Catholics all over the world.  About 1000 people live here and it has its own flag and national anthem, mints its own coinage, prints its own postage stamps and has its own daily newspaper.  In the Vatican museum you will see Michelangelo's ceiling in the Sistine Chapel. Guide: Kees van Duin Mobile: 39 336766135

1:00pm Meet your guide at the Obelisk in the St Peters entrance and depart by coach to the Colosseum. Upon arrival free time to purchase lunch at your own cost.

We went through the Colosseum. Strange to think of what actually happened within those walls!

2:20pm Meet your group at the ticket booth of the Colosseum.

At 2:40pm guided tour of the Colosseum and the Forum.  The Colosseum was inaugurated by Emperor Vespasian in AD80 and was site of gladiator fights and where early Christians were thrown to the lions.  It is of an impressive size and was built to hold 50,000 spectators. SPECIAL INSTRUCTIONS: Meet your guide at Obelisk in the St Peters entrance and you will then meet your coach at Via della Conciliazione. DURATION: 3 hours.  Guide: Kees van Duin Mobile: 39 336766135

The Pantheon in Rome.

Continue your tour of Rome by foot and visit the Trevi fountain - throw three coins in the fountain and make a wish!  Continue on to The Spanish Steps at the Piazza di Spagna which offers a great view of the city.  This area contains superb works of Renaissance and Baroque Art in Santa Maria del Popolo, Villa Maria and offers some of the best shopping in the world along Via Condotti.

5:30pm The rest of the afternoon will be at leisure.  Dinner at your own cost.
10:00pm Meet your coach at Piazza Navona and transfer to your hotel.

Sunday July 8, 2007

8:00am Breakfast at your hotel.

9:00am Depart by coach to the Catacombs. Return to your accommodation by public transport with the help of your tour escort: From Termini station take bus 714 to the stop at St. John Lateran Square (Piazza di S. Giovanni in Laterano), then bus 218 and stop at Fosse Ardeatine.
Visit the San Callisto Catacombs. "The most venerable and most renowned of Rome," said Pope John XXIII of these funerary tunnels. Entering the catacombs, you see at once the most important crypt, that of nine popes. Some of the original marble tablets of their tombs are still preserved. The next crypt is that of St. Cecilia, the patron of sacred music. This early Christian martyr received three ax strokes on her neck, the maximum allowed by Roman law, which failed to kill her outright. Farther on, you'll find the famous Cubicula of the Sacraments with its 3rd-century frescoes.

Our final performance at Santa Maria dei Miracoli. This is one of the "twin" churches on the  Piazza del Popolo where an Egyptian obelisk to Rameses II stands. 

12:45pm Return to your hotel.  Lunch at your own cost.
2:45pm Depart by coach for your performance.
3:30pm Arrive at the Santa Maria dei Miracoli.
4:00pm Rehearsal time. DURATION: 30 minutes.
4:30pm Perform at Santa Maria dei Miracoli. SPECIAL INSTRUCTION: No piano or organ available. CONTACT: Fr. Enrico Frogerio. LOCATION: Via del Corso 528. TEL: 39 06 3219 144.
5:30pm Free time in the area located by Piazza Di Spagna.  Dinner at your own cost.

8:30pm Transfer to your hotel by coach, meet your coach at the same place you were dropped off.

The Obelisk of Rameses II. In 30 BC Augustus brought it to Rome where it was put at the center of Cirus Maximus. In 1589 it was moved to the  Piazza del Popolo. Where it stands today.

Monday July 9, 2007

3:45am Meet at the lobby of your hotel.

At 4:30am check out of your accommodation and pick up your boxed breakfast provided by the hotel.
 

Ciao Italia!  At 4:45am transfer by private coach to the Rome Airport for your 7:20am Air France flight #2305 to Paris connecting to Toronto on Air France flight #352 at 10:40am arriving at 1:00pm.

1:30pm  Arrival at Pearson International Airport of your climate controlled, washroom equipped 47 passenger Cherry Bus Lines highway motor coach.  Charter # C11211

2:00pm Depart for St. Thomas.

4:00pm Approximate time of arrival at your drop-off location.
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