Pilgrimage Tours

Specialists in accompanied and professionally organised pilgrimage tours for school, college and adult groups at highly competitive and all-inclusive prices.

We have over 30 years’ experience in running accompanied study tours for school, college and adult groups all over Europe and, in particular, over the last ten years, we have specialised in running pilgrimage tours to Rome and music tours all over Europe.

We started as teachers and over the years have gained a clear idea of what party leaders seek for themselves, their colleagues and students, If you entrust the organisation of your pilgrimage tour to us you can rely on the organisation of every detail, leaving you free to care for your students rather than to stress and worry about the day to day organisation.
So, if you are thinking of visiting Rome, please consider what we offer.

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Day One

  • Outward flight
  • Castel Gandolfo
  • Lake Albano
  • The pretty little town of Nemi

Rome originated in the forested hills gathered around Lake Albano. The present-day towns and villages in this area, known throughout Italy as: ‘the Castelli’ reflect the settlements of the Latin and Samite tribes. We will visit two of the most stunningly attractive of these:

Castel Gandolfo.
This ‘Castelli’ overlooking Lake Albano is best known for the palace that the Popes have traditionally used for the summer break away from Rome. It enjoys beautiful views over the lake, great coffee and ice cream and tourist shops that offer wares that are more reasonably priced and of better quality than those sold in central Rome.

Most groups like to coach down to Albano for lunch by the lake.

Nemi.
Perched precariously above Lake Nemi the village is famed for its Porchetta, wild strawberries and mushrooms.
Transfer to our hotel with dinner on arrival.

Day Two

Guided visit to the Esquiline Hill
The early Christians met in private houses in an area that was so busy and mixed that they were a little more protected from persecution. Rich and poor jostled for space on the Escaline Hill that overlooked the Colosseum and the Roman Forum beyond. Some of these private houses developed into churches and we plan to visit one of these:

St. Peter in Chains
As you enter, look behind you and you will see the original Roman Villa. During our visit, you will see the chains that bound St. Peter in the Marmotine Prison and also the towering, pensive statue of Moses. a masterpiece created by Michelangelo.

We will also visit the Basilica of St. Maria Major.
There is just one basilica dedicated to St. Mary and with its golden roof, it is one of the most beautiful. It has an attraction that is hard to describe: calm, reflective, charming yet powerful. You will understand why this is one of our favourite venues for our choral groups.

The Colosseum
After lunch, we will walk on down the hill to visit the mighty, dark and glowering monument to suffering. The Pilgrimage Director will help the group to avoid the long, snaking queues and offer a lively and interesting guided tour.

There are lots of fascinating features. For example, the senators had the right to sit right in the front and, proudly, carved their family names in the marble of the parapet. Participants can see these in the museum on the first floor.

The Roman Forum
The fact is that without knowledge, a visit to the Roman Forum can be lost on the students. The Director is responsible for making this aspect of the day’s itinerary real, alive, interesting and memorable.

There are some great stories, for example about the Arch of Titus and the fall of Jerusalem, or about the Senate House and the death of violent murder of Julius Caesar.

By the time we have climbed to the top of the Capitoline Hill, where Romulus marked out the original settlement of Rome, participants will be ready for a rest and here there is a particularly open-air cafeteria that enjoys lovely views over Rome and a welcoming cool breeze.
We will end our excursion with a brief visit to the monument to Victor Emanuel 11 and the Italian Tomb to their Unknown Soldier.

We usually enjoy dinner in the nearby Piazza Navona, and we have a choice of lovely restaurants.

Day Three

Participation in the General Papal Audience in St. Peter’s Square.

During the audience, the Pope greets pilgrim group by name and offers a Papal Blessing. The visit forms the focal point of the pilgrimage and is a most memorable experience.

We have lunch in a safe pedestrianised area, before walking along the River Tiber to visit the Piazza Navona. This has been built on the foundations of the Hippodrome of Emperor Domitian. It has very stylish restaurants, and the famous Fountain of the Four Rivers by Bernini. We like to include a visit to the fabulous Baroque Church of St. Agnes in Agone which is associated with a young girl martyred in the Hippodrome.

Students really enjoy exploring the Campo de Fiori Market, where they can buy a pashmina for five Euros and enjoy freshly squeezed fruit drinks.

A visit to the Pantheon is breathtaking. You will be entering an original Roman Temple that was saved from destruction by the Church.

Our visit will continue with a visit to the Trevi Fountains where, traditionally we sample the famous Italian ice creams and end at the Spanish Steps, where students enjoy visiting the designer clothes outlets and many adults enjoy a visit to Babington’s English Teashop.
Supper in Rome.

Day Four

Morning visit to the Sistine Chapel.
We will have pre-arranged entrance and will arrive early to avoid the queues. We will see the masterpiece of Michelangelo, now restored to in all its glory.
During the afternoon, our pilgrims enjoy a guided visit to the Basilica of St. Peter’s, the Dome and the Crypt.
Supper in the hotel.

Day Five

Our excursions on the last day are governed by flight times.
Some groups enjoy a visit to Ciampino’s bowling alley, others to the Catacombs of St. Callisto or St Sebastian on the ancient Appian Way – or both.

This is an example itinerary and there are many alternatives.

  • For those on a serious budget, by considering very early and late flights you can cover almost as much in a three day as a five-day tour, though it is bound to be more rushed.
  • Some groups like to include a day visit to Assisi.
  • Others include a visit to Pompeii.
  • With a two-centre tour, you could consider a stay in Rome and in beautiful Sorrento or Florence.

The fact is that we run tours all over Europe and, with over 30 years’ experience are confident that we can cover most requirements and dreams.