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.
Book a discounted place on our Venice walking tour and discover the city highlights in our small, intimate groups. A free boat transfer to Murano Island is included, where you can see glass making in action and purchase some unique souvenirs.
Prepare to let your imagination take flight as you follow our experts behind the scenes to explore the Doge’s Palace. See the architectural pomp and pageantry conceived by these Renaissance business tycoons on this small-group Venetian excursion.
Discover the Grand Canal in fitting style with a luxury boat ride in the company of one of our experts and an extra small group of likeminded travellers. From sumptuous palaces to heart-stopping views and famous film locations, you’ll float through the sites of intrigue, scandal, fame and fashion.
Step into another world and explore the quintessential essence of ‘The Floating City’ via its favourite mode of transportation: the Gondola. Traverse the charming canals and weave through the intriguing waterways to enjoy a glimpse of the glory days from long ago.
Join our guides for an introduction to the iconic piazza and basilica of St Mark’s. Timed to give you access to the church during quiet periods, you’ll get a perspective on the city’s history that will enhance your stay.
Visit St Mark’s Square and the magnificent Doge’s Palace during this 2-hour adventure with your own personal guide. Get a taste of Venetian life, history and culture across the centuries during this in-depth exploration of its most wondrous sights.
Under the expert tutelage of our knowledgeable guides, learn to truly appreciate and understand Venice the way it deserves. Visit some of the lesser known historic sites and enjoy an in-depth look at the magnificent art and architecture that can be found around every corner.
Glide along the charming canals and waterways in style during this private gondola ride complete with serenading musical accompaniment. As the sun sets across the lagoon, you’ll relish the stunning views and enjoy the gentle breeze as it ushers in a romantic evening for two.
Take advantage of our expert personal guides for the ultimate exploration of the ‘City of Canals’. Be entertained by the stories and the history behind this magnificent world as told by your own walking-talking fountain of knowledge!
Experience the magnificent Grand Canal in this truly unique way complete with luxurious water transportation that will whisk you off to the most breath-taking views, famous film locations, and grand palaces. Hear all about the mystery, intrigue and scandals that have been born from this sumptuous landscape, and enjoy a taste of the lifestyles of the rich and famous.
Learn to navigate the city’s gorgeous canals and stunning lagoon at your own speed with one of our unique rowing classes. Our great English-speaking instructor will guide you through all the techniques and skills needed to become an expert Gondolier in no time!
Immerse yourself in this in-depth exploration of Venice’s greatest pieces of art and architecture. Surround yourself in the city’s beauty and history to fully appreciate its cultural and artistic contributions to the world at large.
Delve into the city’s history of affluence and glamour during its glory days as Italy’s most important import and export epicentre. With great wealth, originating from the trade of exotic spices and silk, came immense power, used for both good and evil.
Explore one of the most charming and unique cities in the world while gliding around on a traditional gondola. View the beauty of this metropolis both on foot, and by water, as part of this bespoke introduction to the authentic Venice.
Walk the streets that have stood the test of time and explore the tales and mysteries it now has to tell. Enjoy a 4 hour, in-depth, adventure that spans the centuries from the days of Marco Polo to the contemporary ways of Venetian life today. Observe first-hand the efforts that are being made to save this floating museum from sinking into its own canals, and appreciate the enormous significance the city has played in the past, and continues to play today.
See the ancient art of glass making in one of Venice's most illustrious artisan workshops. With a personal skipper and guide accompanying you aboard a luxury motorboat, glide through picturesque canals out to the lagoon, and then on to the island of glass.
Begin your evening with a dreamy ride down Venice's beautiful canals. Once the only mode of transportation, a gondola ride is still the best way to see this floating paradise through the eyes of the Venetians from yesteryear.
Visit three of these beautiful islands on your own chartered motor boat! Take a break from the crowds with this very special tour of three of the lesser known islands, each with a unique history and beauty unto its own.
The darker side of this medieval town is full of chilling tales and mysteries. Where prosperity and power abounds so do the rumours and scandals. This evening walk explores the city after dark and recounts the stories of the souls who may never leave.
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 being whisked away for the day to the fabulous island of Murano! There, you can witness the talent, artistry, and perhaps magic, that goes into crafting the finest quality glass masterworks. The city’s history and splendour come together magnificently during this fascinating trip.