Shrines of Italy: Rome, Assisi, & San Giovanni Rotondo
Moderate – High
Join us as we explore one of the most powerful and influential cities throughout history, as well as home to the Catholic Church, the Pope, and the site of the Vatican City.
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All new travel bookings automatically come with our Book with Confidence Travel Plan*—free of charge. This plan gives pilgrims the ability to move their booking to another destination or simply a different available departure date in our vast travel portfolio, no questions asked. They just need to let us know 120 days* before departure and we’ll waive all penalties and get them booked on a new pilgrimage.
*The Book with Confidence Travel Plan allows for any new booking made with Holy Land Travel Center to be changed to a different destination or to another available departure date. Notice of change in travel plans must be given 120 days before departure; standard cancellation penalties will apply for full cancellation without rebooking or changes made within 120 days to departure. Applicable price and eligible promotions for the new tour will apply; if new trip is less expensive, a future travel credit will be issued for the difference in price. Cannot be applied to Passion Play Pilgrimages. No cash value. Credit is fully transferable. Offer reliant on space availability. Effective 10.7.2020. May be withdrawn at any time. Additional restrictions may apply; see Travel Terms & Conditions for details.
Upon arrival in Rome, you will be met by your Terra Sancta Travel Center representative and transferred to your hotel. Continue to the church of St Paul Outside the Walls, and celebrate Mass. Dinner and overnight in your hotel. Overnight Rome (D)
This morning we head to the magnificent Basilica of St Peter, where we will celebrate Mass. We enjoy some time at leisure before we continue to the Vatican Museums, passing through the Court of the Pigna, designed by Bramante in the 16th century. We will enter the Belvedere Palace and the Courtyard. We will then pass by the secondary galleries to the Greek Cross Room where the splendid Sarcophagi of St Helene and St. Constance are housed. Continue through the Galleries of the Candelabra, the Maps and the Tapestries and the Apostolic Palace. We visit the Apartments of Julius II and then continue to the Sistine Chapel, where we will admire the art masterpieces, the Genesis and the Last Judgment by Michelangelo. We then return to the hotel for dinner and overnight. Overnight Rome (B, D)
This morning we leave for the Vatican to attend the Holy Father’s General Papal Audiences at Saint Peter’s Square. We then continue to visit the remaining major Basilicas of Rome. We start by visiting to the Basilica of St. Mary Major, the most important and the oldest church dedicated to Our Lady, which contains relic from the manger of the infant Jesus. Continue to the Basilica of St. John the Lateran, the Pope’s Cathedral church where relics of both Peter and Paul remain under the main altar. See the Holy Staircase which is believed to be from Pilate’s palace in Jerusalem and brought to Rome by St. Helen in the 4th century. Time permitting, climb the steps on your knees in memory of Christ’s Passion. Overnight Rome (B, D)
Today we depart north through the Umbrian Hills to Orvieto to visit the Duomo and to celebrate Mass at the Eucharistic Miracle Chapel. Free time for lunch. In the afternoon we will visit a local winery to taste the white “Orvieto Classic ” wine produced in the volcanic hills around Orvieto. Finally, we drive to the medieval town of Assisi, home of St. Francis, for dinner and overnight. Overnight Assisi (B, D)
This morning we awake in Assisi, where we will enjoy a full day visiting the important sites in the life of the “gentlest of all saints”. We begin our day with a visit and celebration of Mass in the Basilica of Santa Maria degli Angeli, built to enclose the tiny Church of the Porziuncola, Saint Francis’ first retreat and place of prayer, where he consecrated Clare as the Bride of Christ. In the afternoon we visit the Basilica of St. Clare, the foundress of the Poor Clare nuns, and see the crucifix that spoke to St. Francis in San Damiano. We conclude our day of sightseeing with a visit to the Upper and Lower Basilicas of St. Francis, with its wonderful frescoes by Cimabue and Giotto. The remainder of our day is free for shopping and personal exploration. Dinner and overnight in Assisi. Overnight Assisi (B, D)
Loreto, Lanciano, San Giovanni Rotondo
Today we drive to Loreto to see the family house of Jesus, Mary and Joseph located inside the Basilica of Loreto, where it has been since 1294. Continue to Lanciano where a priest who was doubtful about the Real Presence, during his celebration of Mass, witnessed the host had turned into flesh and the wine into blood. We celebrate Mass in the Church of San Francesco, the Sanctuary of the Eucharistic Miracle. Following Mass, we continue driving south and enter the Region of Puglia to reach San Giovanni Rotondo, the home to Padre Pio, who was made a saint in 2002 by Pope John Paul II. Here we will learn of the extraordinary life and reputation for sanctity of the Franciscan Padre Pio of Pietralcina, who lived, labored and died here in 1968. The remainder of our day is free to explore the grounds and institutions Padre Pio helped to build. Dinner and overnight in San Giovanni Rotondo. Overnight San Giovanni Rotondo (B, D)
San Giovanni Rotondo
Our day begins with a visit and celebration of Mass inside the Church of Santa Maria dell Grazie, where Saint Pio celebrated Mass for many years. We will also visit the Saint Pio Church and the beautiful mosaic crypt that houses a glass reliquary containing Saint Pio’s body. Free afternoon before we return to our hotel for dinner and overnight. Overnight San Giovanni Rotondo (B, D)
This morning we drive to the nearby Monte Sant’Angelo, one of the most ancient of Christian shrines, dedicated to the Archangel Michael who appeared here in the 5th and 8th centuries. Here we celebrate Mass. Free afternoon before we return to San Giovanni Rotondo for dinner and overnight. Overnight San Giovanni Rotondo (B, D)
This morning we drive to Pietrelcina, in the province of Benevento, the birthplace of St. Padre Pio. We will visit the house where St. Pio was born, Santa Ana Chapel where he was baptized, Benevento Cathedral where he was ordained, Santa Maria degli Angeli where he celebrated his first Mass, and Piana Romana where he received the invisible stigmata. Celebrate Mass at Santa Maria degli Angeli. Overnight Pietrelcina (B, D)
Mugnano Del Cardinale, Montecassino, Frascati
This morning we drive a short distance to Mugnano del Cardinale, where we visit the shrine dedicated to Santa Philomena, here we celebrate Mass. Continue to Montecassino to visit the Abbey and the cripta where San Benedict and his sister, Santa Scholastica, are buried. Drive to Frascati to enjoy a walking tour of a local winery. The tour starts from the cellar and goes around the vineyard and through the olive groves and come back to the starting point. A visit to the historical part and wine tasting is included. Tonight, we enjoy a farewell dinner in one of the city’s local restaurants. Overnight Frascati (B, D)