It was our very first trip to Italy, so my husband and I decided to book tours with ArtViva based on Rick Steves' recommendation. We took the Accademia tour with Ingrid, the Uffizi tour with Klaus, and the Original Florence tour with Tatiana. Each guide was a joy to be with. They were all both extremely knowledgeable about their subjects and were enthusiastic about presenting it. I learned so much about the amazing Florentine art and architecture. It was worth every penny. I would highly recommend ArtViva's tours to everyone!
We took four tours through Artviva, three from Florence and one from Venice--all excellent! We took this tour the next day from Florence, and it was the perfect half-day to get a glimpse of the Tuscan wine country without committing an entire day (we had Florence sightseeing in the morning, wine country in the afternoon). Vito was our tour guide and driver, and he was so much fun. With the group, we got a chance to chat with folks from all over the world, and the collegiality was equally as enjoyable as the estate, wine, and olive oils we tasted when we arrived at the estate. We tried the fares, learned about the history of the estate and wine in Tuscany in general, and then took a tour of the property. Both the wine-making facilities and the private home of the Lord and Lady were open for us to tour. It was incredible! And there was even a rare piece of World War I history too (you'll have to visit to find out)! Truly, a terrific experience.
We took four tours through Artviva, three from Florence and one from Venice. They were each outstanding.
Your Own Cinque Terre (private tour): on our last day in Florence, we took a one day private trip to three of the five villages in Cinque Terre. Elenora was our tour guide all day, and our driver was Massimo. Both were fantastic! Elenora especially made our tour truly an experience we will never forget. She's brilliant, easy going, and full of interesting information about the cities and their histories. She even gave us an overview of the towns we traveled through on the drive to the coast. She escorted us through the train system, around the cute and winding cobblestone streets, and even to a fantastic family-owned restaurant for some seafood pasta and wine from the region. It was like having an old friend show you around her hometown. I cannot recommend this tour enough. The sights (!!), the food, the tour guide (seriously, ask for Elenora!)... all were lovely.
We took four tours through Artviva, three from Florence and one from Venice. They were each outstanding. Smart, friendly, adept tour guides led us around. And, friendly, helpful office staff helped us navigate the booking process (even before we arrived, they helped me process the booking and coordinate with meet-up locations all via email in advance).
Original Florence Walk & David Tour (private tour): Corrina was our tour guide, and she was a real joy. She met us in our hotel lobby (super convenient!) and gave us a terrific tour of Florence, emphasizing its architecture, culture, history, and the daily lives of Florentines throughout the centuries. It was capped off by a visit to the David, and arriving with a tour meant that we were able to skip that incredibly LONG LINE. It was the perfect way to become acquainted with the city, and I highly recommend making this your first tour in Florence. Be
We were touring with our 17-year-old grandson. The "Off the Beaten Path" tour with Shannon was the best we had I Italy and his favorite too. To see things that are not crowded with other tourists and so unique was a nice change from the "usual." Other tours with Artiva were excellent as well with very knowledgeable guides who seemed to be able to answer every question, even from a teenager who was anxious to know "everything." Thank you, Shannon and Artiva
We enjoyed our wonderful day with you in Firenze. Thank you for your knowledge, humor, guidance, and keeping us in the shade!
Your love of Firenze is obvious. The five Elizabeths, and the rest of us thoroughly enjoyed this unique experience and would recommend it to anyone!
My Zicasso travel agent booked tours through ArtViva for myself and my husband. We were so pleased she did! In Venice Leticia took us on the water by gondola and speed boat; this is the way to see Venice! Then Tatiana took us through St. Mark's and Doge's Palace, helping us understand the symbolism, art, and history of these places. In Florence, Rodrigo led us to better understand the David and spent time going into our questions with thoughtfulness. A 3 hour walking tour with Kate opened our eyes to what was in plain sight! We would not have understood Florence without her! Finally, the piece de resistance was Klaas and the tour of the Ufizzi Gallery. His storytelling and excitement was effervescent! We adding his tour because of the pleasure we had on the other booked tours, and I'm so glad that Klaas was our last ArtViva tour - what a beautiful ending to being in Florence!
Thank you, ArtViva, for making these two cities come alive. I was so pleased with your guides, professional office staff, and joy!
What a great tour! We were lucky to have Catherine (Cate) as our tour guide. She has such passion for the art and has such a breadth of knowledge that she expertly and clearly imparts from start to finish. I heard her and another guide remarking to each other about never having seen the museum so crowded, but she would not let the crowds keep her from putting us right in front of all the works she wanted to show us. The information she provided illuminated each piece to a stunning degree. It was perhaps the best tour of an art museum we've ever experienced.
I highly recommend this tour, especially if you're lucky enough to have Catherine as your guide. I felt bad for her because the heat and crowds put us behind at the start, but she kept her poise and remained calm and got us through a remarkable tour.
Ishmael led us on a fascinating food tour in and around the famed Mercado in Florence. After sampling tasty pizza dough poppers and lattes, we ventured into the indoor central market (mercado) and met several family owned businesses that sold olive oil, cheese, and other goodies. I'm not a huge foodie but enjoyed the food and learning about the process of aging olive oil and balsamic vinegar. We also had a full lunch at a local restaurant with delicious pasta and oxtail. I can't say enough superlatives about Ishmael. He is knowledgeable, personable and attentive. I would love to invite him over for dinner in San Francisco so that we can continue our conversations about food, music and art. There's so much more than food on a tour with Ishmael. Peace and blessing on to you. Ciao, Florence. We will return.
Step back in time through more than 2,000 years of tantalising and tumultuous history to find out how this glorious city became one of the most important art centres of all time. See fabulous masterpieces and hear about the astounding events that happened here which shocked the Florentines...
'Cerca Trova' – seek and ye shall find. On this excursion, see the sites that inspired the author Dan Brown to write Inferno, and have a glimpse through the eyes of the protagonist, the fictional sleuth Robert Langdon.
If you’re short on time, we have the ideal excursion for you. Our good-humoured guide will accompany you on a 2.5 hour walk around the city to take in its sites and stories, as well as giving you pre-reserved access to the Accademia.
A relaxing evening walk around Florence’s most charming, fascinating and historic quarter, the Oltrarno, concluding with a pre-dinner drink in a charming local establishment. Experience the dark, medieval past as it is brought to life during this unique exploration of the little-known but notable quarter.
Let us organise a captivating evening for you in Florence with our wine tasting and speaker event. Join distinguished patron presenters such as Prince Duccio Corsini, Count Niccolò Capponi and Count Sebastiano Capponi for inspirational entertainment.
Delve into Italy's passionate love affair with food and the intimate role it plays in the country’s culture. Spend a morning with a local foodie sampling Italian delicacies and the fresh local ingredients. Learn the secrets behind creating traditional and delicious Tuscan feasts.
Step out of the classroom and onto the city streets on this unique and interactive Italian lesson. Great for all levels, from absolute beginners to more experienced Italian language enthusiasts, this is a relaxed but informative language class that teaches you the essential phrases for everyday living in Italy.
This informal yet informative lesson will lead you through the basic techniques of one of the most pleasant professions in the world – that of Sommelier! Our friendly expert will invite you to taste three traditional Italian wines, imparting their valuable wisdom as they go.
Our unparalleled guides will unveil the secrets of one of the oldest monuments in the city, the Baptistery, plus the newly-renovated Opera del Duomo Museum. Don’t miss the chance to access the crypt of the cathedral, Brunelleschi's Dome and climb Giotto's Bell Tower at your own leisure.
Let our great guides help your children explore and learn about this magical destination. You and the kids will be taken on adventures designed to engage even the youngest of travellers! We are experts at bringing the past to life with fascinating and fun tales.
Enjoy a fabulous half day bike ride through the Chianti countryside. Traverse the rolling hills and sumptuous valleys that can only be found in the classic Chianti countryside. Work up a hearty appetite in preparation for a gourmet lunch, with the added treat of sampling local delicacies and olive oil. Our excellent bi-lingual excursion leader will take you on a visit to a traditional villa and will incorporate a stop at one of the most beautiful churches found in the area.
Get an exclusive look into the sumptuous and decadent world of the Medici Chapels with the aid of a personal guide. Set within the glorious San Lorenzo, the Medici Chapels are magnificent installations paying homage to the talent and ingenuity of the architecture and sculpture of the 15th and 16th centuries.
A lesson in how to turn the simplest of ingredients into delectable Italian dishes. Discover how to make three kinds of fantastic homemade pasta plus perfectly paired sauces, as well as a delicious Italian dessert!
Enjoy an introduction to one of the greatest Baroque artists and pioneers of her time. Artemisia Gentileschi broke many boundaries during the Renaissance: foremost among these was her admission to the Accademia di Arte del Disegno – a first for a woman!
Set off on a discovery of the evolution of style and sashay through the colourful past of Italian fashion. Explore the lives and styles of two of the most creative minds the fashion world has ever seen: Ferragamo and Gucci.
Explore the splendid palace built by the wealthy Pitti family – Medici rivals – in the 15th century. Today this historic palazzo is the biggest museum campus in the city, housing 5 museums with an eclectic array of art and artefacts. Romp through collections ranging from opulent private living quarters, to 16th and 17th century paintings (in the Palatine Gallery) and a Costume Gallery.
See local artisans producing some of the city’s most famous traditional handicrafts. This exclusive Artisan's Workshop tour takes you into a world that cannot be found anywhere else but in the ancient streets of this glorious destination.
This is the only bicycle expedition to include a swim and the time to laze away the afternoon! Enjoy a leisurely ride from Florence Tuscan countryside, before stopping at a historic estate for a cellar visit, wine tasting, traditional lunch and access to the estate pool.
Indulge in a great shopping trip that simply overflows with style (and shopping bags!) in the company of a local fashionista. Discover tips for the best locations, the best prices and find the most unique items with our fashion-savvy shopping guru.
Search for the lost Leonardo Da Vinci Masterpiece, "La Battaglia di Anghiari", lost for over 5 centuries. You’ll experience the thrill of being at the heart of an exciting investigation into the whereabouts of one of the greatest masterpieces ever created!
Join the world’s leading 'art sleuth' on a visit through a world-heritage listed landmark while you learn about his work to solve the last truly great art mystery: the search for Leonardo Da Vinci's greatest missing masterpiece.
Housing one of the world's most famous statues - Michelangelo's David - the Accademia museum is a must-see for any visit to Florence.
Whilst you don't want to skip seeing this masterpiece, you may want to skip the longest lines to enter. Book ahead for the fastest entry possible.
Explore the quiet and calm of the city during the most tranquil moment of the day on our unique jogging expedition. See the façades of some of the most breathtaking buildings illuminated by the first rays of Tuscan sunshine and glimpse the most famous piazzas bathed in early-morning light. An opportunity not to be missed.
You don't have to be a science buff to appreciate this wondrous and well-organised little gem of a museum. The Museo Galileo is home to the only surviving instruments designed and built by Galileo himself. Step back in time as you explore the wonders of the Galileo Museum with your own expert guide.
Enjoy a slice of the good life on this ultimate local experience. Be treated to a wine tasting of a traditional estate’s award-winning wines, as well as a cellar visit and gourmet lunch, before having time to laze beside a private pool with stunning views of hilly countryside.
Immerse yourself in the classic Tuscan countryside for a few hours. Relax poolside at an exclusive private estate with stunning views of the landscape. What’s more, you can also enjoy a traditional lunch with superb local wine!
Utilise our expertise by having us design that special unforgettable experience of a lifetime for you.
Whether you wish to bike ride through the Tuscan hills, treat your family to the art cities, experience Italy's rich gourmet and wine heritage, explore your artistic side, or have a romantic honeymoon vacation, we can arrange it all.
Enjoy a private, interactive performance in historically-correct, high-quality costume in a famous Florentine Museum. You and your group will also have access to secret corridors and be able to speak with a ‘Renaissance figure’ about life in times past.
Design your own unique scent with one of the last great artisanal perfumers of Europe. This Italian nobleman-philosopher turned world-renowned master parfumier will explore your memories, wishes and hopes to create your all-natural haute couture perfume, in the atelier of a Renaissance palazzo with stunning views of Florence.
Looking to turn the dream of your Italian experience into a reality? Our insider contacts will make sure that you enjoy exclusive access to private palaces all over Italy. Meet the aristocratic and ancient families who occupy these historic residences. It’s your tour, your way: the possibilities are endless!
Embark on an exclusive guide around one of the oldest monuments in the city. The Baptistery, the cathedral and crypt, plus the newly-renovated Opera del Duomo Museum are all waiting to be discovered with the aid of one of our knowledgeable guides. This visit also offers access to Brunelleschi's Dome and the chance to climb Giotto's Bell Tower at your leisure – enjoy the view!