$4,100 (plus air)
Small group – 18 people max. Daily Mass. Wine tasting. Some of Rome’s best local guides. Opening the Vatican Museums. Alone in the Sistine Chapel. And since it’s Lent, we will be exploring the Lenten Station Churches of Rome.
February is off-season in Rome. Flights are inexpensive and the crowds are small.
Is this pilgrimage trip for you?
You need to be flexible.
This pilgrimage is not for grumpy people or those unable to be joyfully flexible. Italy is completely back to normal, but Italy is Italy so we need to be up for anything.
So if you are easy-going and excited to travel, even with some uncertainties mixed in, this could be the trip for you!
If this pilgrimage doesn’t work for you, no worries, I’ve been doing this for nearly 19 years and plan to do many, many more.
You should be in good physical shape.
We will do a lot of walking, much of it outside, and much of it on uneven ground. We can walk up to 5 miles per day. Please do consider this before signing up.
You need to be able to carry your own luggage.
You are responsible for your luggage. We do not have porters and the two story hotel we use in Rome does not have an elevator. I will provide a thorough packing list to help you pack lightly and efficiently.
A full itinerary will be available for those who sign up. Some of the things we will be doing…
Attending the Lenten Station Church Masses at Saint Mary Major, San Lorenzo, Santi Apostoli, Saint Peter’s Basilica, and San Clemente. We have something special planned for our other three Masses.
We will explore lots of churches around the city, including several related to apostles and evangelists, some with relics from the Life of Christ, all the seven pilgrim churches, churches with the tombs of Saint Paul, Saint Catherine, Saint Monica, Saint Philip Neri, Saint Ignatius, and more.
We will visit some crypts.
There will be aperitivi in a few of my favorite bars. We will have a wine pairing dinner. We will have six additional meals together in my favorite restaurants.
And, what’s sure to be a highlight, we will unlock the doors and turn on the lights of the Vatican Museums and Sistine Chapel. Just us. All alone. Hours before the Museums are open to the public.
$4,100 per person – ground only.
$1,000 deposit secures your spot.
Final payment of $3,100 is due February 1st, 2024.
The cost is per person, in double occupancy, meaning two people to a room.
I match singles with other traveling singles (of the same sex) and that always works out great. If you are uncomfortable sharing a room with a stranger, you can request a single room for an additional $800. Single rooms are limited.
Included in the price
Accommodations for 8 nights
We are staying 8 nights at the lovely Hotel Bramante located in the Borgo neighborhood.
Breakfast daily plus 7 additional meals in some of my favorite restaurants, never hotels!
Drinks, including unlimited wine, is included in all our lunches and dinners.
Airport transfers both ways between FCO and our Rome hotel. Send me your flight info and my driver will pick you up. Easy.
All group ground transportation
We’ll be traveling in a private motor coach.
Full time service of a tour director
I’ll be with you at all times.
No hidden costs
If we do it as a group, it’s included in the price! You are responsible only for the meals you have on your own, souvenirs you wish to buy, and anything you want to do in your free time.
Once I receive your deposit, your tour price will not go up!
All tips for group meals, guides, and drivers
Would you believe that many tour companies require you to tip as you go? Not only does that add to the advertised sticker price of a tour, it’s also a huge hassle to you! No need to worry about that here. Tips are already included.
Entry fees and tours
All entry fees and tours to our included group activities.
Plan your trip with your traveling companions before you leave! I’ll set up private Facebook groups for each tour to give you a chance to meet before you meet!
We have a lot planned, but time on your own is important. We take our time in churches to give you the opportunity for prayer and reflection. We also include free time for you to explore, shop, and relax on your own.
You should arrive in Rome no later than February 20th – we will begin in the afternoon of the 20th. If you want to arrive early, email the hotel directly and let them know you are with The Catholic Traveler.
You should depart no earlier than February 28th, our last group activity is dinner on the 27th (you have the room for the night, of course, checking out on the 28th). If you want to stay longer, email the hotel directly and let them know you are with The Catholic Traveler.
Most airlines are offering free changes should anything happen to the trip. Most airlines are not offering refunds, but rather a credit.
If you are not partial to a particular airline, visit flights.google.com to find the best rates to Rome. As of this writing, nonstop roundtrip between NYC and Rome for these dates is only $600. Even cheaper if you don’t mind a layover.
No Hassle Cancellations
No other tour or pilgrimage company offers this level of free cancellation coverage.
If you need to cancel for any reason at all, up to 60 days before the start of the trip, you will be refunded 100% of the cost of the pilgrimage.
If you need to cancel for any reason at all within 60 days of departure, you’ll get everything back minus the deposit.
If for any reason I need to cancel or postpone the trip, you will be refunded 100% of the cost of the pilgrimage.
In all cases, you are responsible for working with the airline to get credit or refunds for changed or cancelled flights.
Trip insurance is a wise investment in case something comes up while you are in Italy. If you think there is any chance you may need to cancel, I recommend you purchase travel insurance. A “Cancel for Any Reason” plan will let you, well, cancel for ‘most’ any reason. Most plans should allow for at least a 75% refund should you need to cancel at any time before departure. I have a friend who specializes in trip insurance, you can contact him directly, but you are under no obligation to use him and I don’t get any sort of kick backs, so shop around and find what is best for you.