Explore undiscovered Italy on this new Cosmos tour! Who doesn’t love the sound of 8 days in the Italian countryside, sipping on fine wine and traditional cuisine? Cosmos' 8 Day Gourmet Tuscany is based in the town of Montecatini. With 7 nights spent in a beautiful 4-star hotel, travellers will be met by their local guide and taken out on daily excursions to explore the surrounding landscapes of breathtaking Tuscany. Read more..
Touring in Italy & Sicily
Top Tips for Italy and Sicily!
Tipping – Check if a “Service Charge” is already included in your bill. It is not expected to tip on top of this, but if you feel compelled, a tip is always appreciated. If there is no service charge, it is common to tip roughly 10%. Check with your local guide if you are unsure what is appropriate. Currency – Italy falls in line with the majority of Europe by adopting the Euro. ATMs are readily available although check what fees, if any, your bank card may incur. Ask your bank what options are available before heading on your holiday and advise them of your travel plans to avoid having your transactions blocked. Greeting – In Italy, greetings are friendly and warm. Don’t be alarmed if someone leans in to kiss you on each cheek when saying hello or goodbye. Café Seating – Many cafés offer tables and bar-style countertops to stand at while sipping your espresso and downing your tasty pastry. Unless your feet are aching, choose the standing option! As soon as you take a seat, the charge for whatever you order goes up to cover the “service”. Cameras – It is important to keep a lookout for any signs banning cameras, and particularly flash photography. It is common to find the flash setting prohibited in churches and museums, so check for signs at the entrance before getting too trigger-happy.
What should I bring?
Layers are the new black – Pack a series of layers that can be worn together, so that you can be ready for a range of temperatures and occasions throughout your tour of Italy. Comfortable shoes – The old cobblestone streets that make the Italian laneways what they are, can make for a treacherous landscape. When packing for your tour make sure you include some sandals or closed-in shoes that are comfortable and anchor in your feet to avoid skiing along the often-uneven pavement. Secure Daypack / Handbag – Whether you are travelling with a stylish handbag or a hardy daypack, make sure it zips up completely to keep your possessions secure.
Don't miss these authentic experiences on tour!
Local Dining – Sharing a meal is embedded in the Italian culture, and you may be invited for a home-cooked feast during your Italian tour. This truly authentic experience can sometimes involve visiting a local farmhouse and seeing the fresh produce go from paddock to plate (known as agritourismo in Italy). Italian Crostoli – What’s better than deep-friend pastry covered in icing sugar? Deep-fried pastry covered in icing sugar cooked by a local Italian Nonna from a recipe passed down over generations. Do yourself a favour – try it. Local Digestive – In Italy it is customary to finish a meal with a digestive. It is common to be offered either Grappa (a brandy made from the grape leftovers from the wine-making process) or Limoncello (a lemon liqueur from Southern Italy) at the end of a meal.