Join us for a fun-filled stay in Tuscany! Visit nearby Florence, Siena, and San Gimignano; enjoy hands-on art and culinary activities; and stay in a medieval village at an upscale, historic Tuscan villa (with a refreshing pool).

Starting at: $3,595 Make a Reservation Ask Us A Question or Call 855-330-1542
 Mother and daughter in Florence  Girls enjoying gelato in Florence   Florence and the Duomo  Typical street in a Tuscan village  Mother at children exploring a Tuscan town  Tuscan landscape  Traditional foods of Italy  Making pasta in Tuscany  Learning the art of making pasta  Freshly made pasta  Florence and the Duomo at dusk  Michelangelo's <i>David</i>, the centerpiece of the Accademia. Credit: John Kellerman/Alamy  The hill town of San Gimignano, featuring its many medieval towers  The Campo, or main square, in Siena  Villa Casagrande, a 14th-century Tuscan villa set within a medieval village near Florence

Treasures of Tuscany: A Family Journey

8 days from $3,595

Join us for a fun-filled stay in Tuscany! Visit nearby Florence, Siena, and San Gimignano; enjoy hands-on art and culinary activities; and stay in a medieval village at an upscale, historic Tuscan villa (with a refreshing pool).

or Call 855-330-1542

Tour Details

TOUR BROCHURE

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WHAT OUR TRAVELERS SAY

Smithsonian tours are one of the few things in life that are worth every single penny they charge. Outstanding tours, outstanding values.

- Phil & Arlene W.

Our expert guide did an excellent job of directing her comments to the children. My grandchildren are still talking about her!

- Smithsonian Journeys Traveler

JOURNEYS DISPATCHES

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Accommodations

* Click on hotel name to visit hotel web-site.

Villa Casagrande

Figline Valdarno, Italy

Villa Casagrande is an elegant 14th-century Tuscan villa, nestled in the historic center of Figline Valdarno. Situated in the heart of Tuscany, an hour’s ride outside Florence, the villa boasts 60 bright and spacious rooms. The property houses a lovely spa and Turkish bath, both an indoor and outdoor pool, two restaurants our guests have enjoyed very much, as well as a working farm and wine cellar. The town center of Figline Valdarno is within walking distance and features shops, historic buildings, and wonderful restaurants.

Number of nights: 6



Activity Levels

Activity Level 2: Moderate


Expectations: Long touring days with some full-day motor coach excursions. Standing and walking for long periods of time during city tours, museum visits, and/or outdoor activities. Walking over sometimes difficult terrain (e.g. cobblestones, city hills, stairs without handrails, and an absence of elevators); some longer walks to get to city centers where coaches are prohibited. 

Appropriate for: Travelers who are physically fit and comfortable with longer days of touring (both walking tours and coach time).

Testimonials

WHAT OUR TRAVELERS SAY

Smithsonian tours are one of the few things in life that are worth every single penny they charge. Outstanding tours, outstanding values.

- Phil & Arlene W.

Our expert guide did an excellent job of directing her comments to the children. My grandchildren are still talking about her!

- Smithsonian Journeys Traveler
Reading List
Florence & Tuscany with Kids 2018: Florence and Tuscany Travel Guide 2018 (Florence and Tuscany with Kids)
By: Ariela Bankier
The #1 Travel Guide for Families Visiting Florence and Tuscany! Florence & Tuscany with Kids (third edition-2018) is not your typical run-of-the-mill guidebook. Rather, it is an indispensable and hugely useful resource for any family travelling to beautiful Tuscany. Here you will find: Detailed family-friendly itineraries, covering the entire region * The top 5 activities for families in all the important cities (Florence, Pisa, Siena, San Gimignano, Lucca and more!) * Lists of the best events and activities in Tuscany, such as: water parks, adventure parks, cooking classes, horseback rides, jousting matches and medieval carnivals * Unique detective missions and kids' corners, filled with interesting facts and stories * Fascinating details about Italian art, culture, and history * Insider tips and top advice, from a local, that will save you time and money during your travels * Recommendations for excellent family hotels, B&Bs and restaurants * The best kid-friendly museums and sights. *** Here's what a few of our readers had to say about Florence & Tuscany with Kids: "Excellent book, tried and tested with 3 kids aged 10-11. We took a regular guide book too but always found ourselves checking this one because it had relevant info for famiilies, like: which place sells the best gelato? Good local panini bars, cafes, child friendly restaurants?..." DC "Well organized and very useful. If you are travelling to Florence or Tuscany with your kids, this guide is a must". Mat D. "This book is a must-have if you are taking your kids to the Tuscany region! It was invaluable and made our trip a great experience. We traveled with a 3 & 5 year old and the tips and activities inside were great. The restaurant recommendations proved to be helpful and delicious." Allison Neumann "Better than your normal travel guide. I love the additional information provided.... And now I have a much better understanding of Renaissance art!" W.Mason "Very good guide for Florence and the surrounding areas if you have kids. The major attractions had some kid based projects, these were fun to complete. Also, the facts based for kids were useful in keeping our child focused. We really liked the area/attraction gelato based information." C. Frears "This travel guide is detailed, thorough and full of useful information. As other reviewers have pointed out, its forte isn't an abundance of colorful photos and maps (on the contrary, it is printed in b/w), but the information it provides. The detailed itineraries (especially the Maremma and the Florence itineraries, which we followed) were very interesting and enjoyable. The reviews of Florence's best family friendly attractions and the recommendations for parks and medieval festivities were great. In fact, we found several suggestions and activity ideas here that we did not see in any other guide we consulted. All in all, this is a highly recommended resource for families traveling to Tuscany" Roi
First Words - Italian: 100 Italian words to learn (Lonely Planet Kids)
By: Lonely Planet Kids
Bring the Italian language to life with this beautifully illustrated children's book from Lonely Planet Kids, an imprint of Lonely Planet, the world's leading travel guide and phrasebook publisher. Perfect for the whole family, First Words Italian features 100 words to use while traveling, from food and transport, to animals and weather. Each word is accompanied with a bold illustration and a simple pronunciation guide to make the vocabulary fun and easy to learn. Plus, its small size makes it a handy addition to any trip to Italy. Also included is a free audio pronunciation guide. Scan the QR code on the back cover or visit our First Words website to hear each word spoken by a native child. Also available: First Words French First Words Spanish First Words English First Words Japanese First Words Mandarin About Lonely Planet Kids: Come explore! Let's start an adventure. Lonely Planet Kids excites and educates children about the amazing world around them. Combining astonishing facts, quirky humor and eye-catching imagery, we ignite their curiosity and encourage them to discover more about our planet. Every book draws on our huge team of global experts to help share our continual fascination with what makes the world such a diverse and magnificent place-inspiring children at home and in school.
Amazing Pictures and Facts About Florence: The Most Amazing Fact Book for Kids About Florence (Kid's U)
By: Mina Kelly
Kid’s U Presents… Florence - Amazing Pictures and Facts About Florence ---- Have you ever wondered where one of the most well known instruments was invented? Or have you asked yourself why the city of Florence is so famous? In this book you will learn amazing things about Florence, finding the answers to these questions, and many more! With pictures alongside them, this book will capture the attention of even the youngest of children, and you will all start to explore the many wonders of the world. Many children learn only because they have to, but don’t realize how amazing the world is, and how fun it is to learn about! The goal of this book is to change that. This book will help your children to see how vast and wonderful the world is, and inspire them with the excitement of learning. Readers will Become more aware of the various cultures around the world. Discover a multitude of amazing facts to wonder and learn more about. Find that reading can be educational, but fun! And much more! Table of Contents Introduction Chapter 1- Where is Florence? Chapter 2- How old is the city of Florence? Chapter 3- What is the population of Florence? Chapter 4- What is the weather like in Florence? Chapter 5- What is the landscape like around the city? Chapter 6- What is the currency used in Florence? Chapter 7- What is the language spoken in Florence? Chapter 8- What is the city’s symbol? Chapter 9- Is there much art in Florence? Chapter 10- Have any famous artists come from Florence? Chapter 11- Have any stories originated in Florence? Chapter 12- Has anything been invented in the city? Chapter 13- What is the most famous building in the city? Chapter 14- Has the city been the first to do anything? Chapter 15- Does the city have any of its own sports? Chapter 16- Have any famous people been born in Florence? Chapter 17- Is there any traditional food in Florence? Chapter 18- Did anything happen to Florence during World War II? Chapter 19- Has the city ever been the capital of Italy? Chapter 20- How many people visit this city?
Going to Tuscany: Travel Guide and Journal for Kids
By: T. Attard
This travel guide and journal will engage everyone with brief histories, facts and interesting tidbits of information on key historical sights of Tuscany, Italy. A variety of activities will keep travellers interested, involved and engaged. This journal will become a treasured memory and keepsake of your family's vacation to Tuscany.
Renato and the Lion
By: Barbara DiLorenzo
The touching, magical story of a boy in a war-torn country and the stone lion that rescues him. Renato loves his home in Florence, Italy. He loves playing with his friends in the Piazza della Signoria. He loves walking home by the beautiful buildings and fountains with his father in the evenings. And he especially loves the stone lion who seems to smile at him from a pedestal in the piazza. The lion makes him feel safe.But one day his father tells him that their family must leave. Their country is at war, and they will be safer in America. Renato can only think of his lion. Who will keep him safe?With luminous watercolor paintings, Barbara DiLorenzo captures the beauty of Florence in this heartwarming and ultimately magical picture book.
Not in a Tuscan Villa: During a year in Italy, a New Jersey couple discovers the true Dolce Vita when they trade rose-colored glasses for 3Ds
By: John Petralia, Nancy Petralia
What happens if you decide to make a dream come true? Newly retired and looking for more than a vacation, John and Nancy Petralia intrepidly pack a few suitcases and head to the "perfect" Italian city. Within days their dream becomes a nightmare. After residing in two Italian cities, negotiating the roads and healthcare, discovering art, friends, food, and customs, the Petralias learn more than they anticipate--about Italy, themselves, what it means to be American, and what's important in life. Part memoir, part commentary, quirky and sincere, Not in a Tuscan Villa is about having the courage to step out of your comfort zone and do something challenging in later life. The adventure recaptures the Petralias' youth, rekindles their romance--and changes their lives forever.
Every Day in Tuscany: Seasons of an Italian Life
By: Frances Mayes
#1 NEW YORK TIMES BESTSELLER AND A TIMELESS CLASSIC FROM THE AUTHOR OF UNDER MAGNOLIA Frances Mayes—widely published poet, gourmet cook, and travel writer—opnes the door to a wondrous new world when she buys and restores an abandoned villa in the spectacular Tuscan countryside. In evocative language, she brings the reader along as she discovers the beauty and simplicity of life in Italy. Mayes also creates dozens of delicious seasonal recipes from her traditional kitchen and simple garden, all of which she includes in the book. Doing for Tuscany what M.F.K. Fisher and Peter Mayle did for Provence, Mayes writes about the tastes and pleasures of a foreign country with gusto and passion.
A Culinary Traveller in Tuscany: Exploring and Eating off the Beaten Track
By: Beth Elon
Each of the ten itineraries in this cookbook/guidebook takes readers through parts of Tuscany that still remain largely undiscovered and into the kitchens of more than fifty superb but little-known restaurants specializing in regional cuisine–those that are for the most part overlooked by tourists and known only to the locals. Each regional section begins with illuminating and absorbing explanations of what makes Tuscan cooking so unique: location, location, location. You’ll read about a bean so beloved by a village that it’s been elevated to cult status–but unknown a few kilometers down the road; an aboriginal baby lamb that is almost unknown outside of the Zeri valley; the endless array of vegetable tarts found nowhere in Tuscany but Lunigiana and Garfagnana. With this guide in hand, you’ll not only know where to dine but what to order when you get there. In addition to 100 recipes, also included are nearby points of interest, descriptions and contact information for restaurants, trattorie, gourmet shops, wineries, olive oil producers, local markets, and regional food festivals, and how to find the monasteries, workshops, and artisans’ studios that offer local items ranging from herbal beauty products to traditional ceramics and handwoven linens.
The Agony and the Ecstasy: A Biographical Novel of Michelangelo
By: Irving Stone
Irving Stone’s classic biographical novel of Michelangelo—the #1 New York Times bestseller in which both the artist and the man are brought to vivid, captivating life. His time—the turbulent Renaissance, the years of poisoning princes, warring Popes, and the all-powerful de'Medici family... His loves—the frail and lovely daughter of Lorenzo de'Medici, the ardent mistress of Marco Aldovrandi, and his last love, his greatest love—the beautiful, unhappy Vittoria Colonna... His genius—a God-driven fury from which he wrested brilliant work that made a grasp for heaven unmatched in half a millennium... His name—Michelangelo Buonarroti. Creator of the David, painter of the ceiling in the Sistine Chapel, architect of the dome of St. Peter's, Michelangelo lives once more in the tempestuous, powerful pages of Irving Stone's towering triumph. A masterpiece in its own right, this biographical novel offers a compelling portrait of one of the greatest artists the world has ever known.
The Decameron (Translated with an Introduction by J. M. Rigg)
By: Giovanni Boccaccio
Written in the middle of the 14th century as the Bubonic Plague decimated the population of Europe, “The Decameron” is a satirical and allegorical collection of stories by Italian author Giovanni Boccaccio. Constructed as a series of “frame stories,” or stories within a story, the narrative follows seven young women and three young men who take refuge in a secluded villa outside Florence in order to escape the Black Death. During ten evenings of their stay, each of travelers takes turns as storyteller to pass the time. Their stories relate tales of love, both happy and tragic, examples of the power of fortune and human will, and exhibitions of virtue, cleverness, and trickery. Boccaccio’s work is not only important for its superb literary quality but for its examination of the changing cultural values that defined the transition from medieval times into the renaissance. The virtues of intelligence and sophistication of the increasingly urbanized and mercantilist Europe are shown as superior to the relative simplicity and piousness of the feudal system. More than the sum of its parts, “The Decameron” is a milestone in the history of European literature, an influential and enduring masterpiece. This edition is printed on premium acid-free paper and is translated with an introduction by J. M. Rigg.
The House of Medici: Its Rise and Fall
By: Christopher Hibbert
At its height Renaissance Florence was a centre of enormous wealth, power and influence. A republican city-state funded by trade and banking, its often bloody political scene was dominated by rich mercantile families, the most famous of which were the Medici. This enthralling book charts the family's huge influence on the political, economic and cultural history of Florence. Beginning in the early 1430s with the rise of the dynasty under the near-legendary Cosimo de Medici, it moves through their golden era as patrons of some of the most remarkable artists and architects of the Renaissance, to the era of the Medici Popes and Grand Dukes, Florence's slide into decay and bankruptcy, and the end, in 1737, of the Medici line.
The Art of the Renaissance (World of Art)
By: Peter Murray, Linda Lefevre Murray
The Renaissance began in Italy, but it grew out of European civilization, with roots in Antiquity, in Christian dogma, and in Byzantium. The artistic ferment which had taken hold of Florence by 1420 was also reflected in the regional schools of Siena, Umbria, Mantua and Rome; and the new ideas spread from Italy through France, the Netherlands, Austria, Spain and Portugal. The book includes artists as diverse as Piero della Francesca, Van Eyck, Durer, Mantegna and Bellini, as well as the High Renaissance masters Leonardo da Vinci, Michelangelo and Raphael. With superb illustrations of the artists' work and crucial historical information about the "rebirth" of arts and letters, the authors illuminate one of the most important periods of art history. 251 illus., 51 in color.
La Bella Figura: A Field Guide to the Italian Mind
By: Beppe Severgnini
Join the bestselling author of Ciao, America! on a lively tour of modern Italy that takes you behind the seductive face it puts on for visitors—la bella figura—and highlights its maddening, paradoxical true self You won’t need luggage for this hypothetical and hilarious trip into the hearts and minds of Beppe Severgnini’s fellow Italians. In fact, Beppe would prefer if you left behind the baggage his crafty and elegant countrymen have smuggled into your subconscious. To get to his Italia, you’ll need to forget about your idealized notions of Italy. Although La Bella Figura will take you to legendary cities and scenic regions, your real destinations are the places where Italians are at their best, worst, and most authentic: The highway: in America, a red light has only one possible interpretation—Stop! An Italian red light doesn’t warn or order you as much as provide an invitation for reflection. The airport: where Italians prove that one of their virtues (an appreciation for beauty) is really a vice. Who cares if the beautiful girls hawking cell phones in airport kiosks stick you with an outdated model? That’s the price of gazing upon perfection.The small town: which demonstrates the Italian genius for pleasant living: “a congenial barber . . . a well-stocked newsstand . . . professionally made coffee and a proper pizza; bell towers we can recognize in the distance, and people with a kind word and a smile for everyone.”The chaos of the roads, the anarchy of the office, the theatrical spirit of the hypermarkets, and garrulous train journeys; the sensory reassurance of a church and the importance of the beach; the solitude of the soccer stadium and the crowded Italian bedroom; the vertical fixations of the apartment building and the horizontal democracy of the eat-in kitchen. As you venture to these and many other locations rooted in the Italian psyche, you realize that Beppe has become your Dante and shown you a country that “has too much style to be hell” but is “too disorderly to be heaven.” Ten days, thirty places. From north to south. From food to politics. From saintliness to sexuality. This ironic, methodical, and sentimental examination will help you understand why Italy—as Beppe says—“can have you fuming and then purring in the space of a hundred meters or ten minutes.”
The Scribe of Siena: A Novel
By: Melodie Winawer
“Like Outlander with an Italian accent.” —Real Simple “A detailed historical novel, a multifaceted mystery, and a moving tale of improbable love.” —Publishers Weekly, starred review A NEW YORK POST MUST-READ BOOK Readers of Diana Gabaldon’s Outlander and Tracy Chevalier’s Girl with a Pearl Earring…will be swept away by the spell of medieval Siena” (Library Journal, starred review) in this transporting love story and gripping historical mystery.Accomplished neurosurgeon Beatrice Trovato knows that her deep empathy for her patients is starting to impede her work. So when her beloved brother passes away, she welcomes the unexpected trip to the Tuscan city of Siena to resolve his estate, even as she wrestles with grief. But as she delves deeper into her brother’s affairs, she discovers intrigue she never imagined—a 700-year-old conspiracy to decimate the city. As Beatrice explores the evidence further, she uncovers the journal and paintings of the fourteenth-century artist Gabriele Accorsi. But when she finds a startling image of her own face, she is suddenly transported to the year 1347. She awakens in a Siena unfamiliar to her, one that will soon be hit by the Plague. Yet when Beatrice meets Accorsi, something unexpected happens: she falls in love—not only with Gabriele, but also with the beauty and cadence of medieval life. As the Plague and the ruthless hands behind its trajectory threaten not only her survival but also Siena’s very existence, Beatrice must decide in which century she belongs. The Scribe of Siena is the captivating story of a brilliant woman’s passionate affair with a time and a place that captures her in an impossibly romantic and dangerous trap—testing the strength of fate and the bonds of love.
My Travel Journal (Lonely Planet Kids)
By: Lonely Planet Kids, Nicola Baxter
Never forget an adventure with this bright and bold journal from Lonely Planet Kids. Packed with writing topic suggestions, lists to complete, ideas for getting the creative juices flowing and lots more fill-in fun, this is the perfect way for young travellers to record their memories from a trip. There's space to write, draw, collage, colour and complete - turning the finished journal into a wonderful scrapbook to treasure forever. With fun illustrations, a super-bright neon cover and a handy, backpack sized format, it's a must-have item for any trip. Part of our Family Activity range. Also available: My Family Travel Map, Boredom Buster About Lonely Planet Kids: From the world's leading travel publisher comes Lonely Planet Kids, a children's imprint that brings the world to life for young explorers everywhere. With a range of beautiful books for children aged 5-12, we're kickstarting the travel bug and showing kids just how amazing our planet can be. From bright and bold sticker activity books, to beautiful gift titles bursting at the seams with amazing facts, we aim to inspire and delight curious kids, showing them the rich diversity of people, places and cultures that surrounds us. We pledge to share our enthusiasm and love of the world, our sense of humour and continual fascination for what it is that makes the world we live in the diverse and magnificent place it is. It's going to be a big adventure - come explore!
The Travel Book: Mind-Blowing Stuff on Every Country in the World (Lonely Planet Kids)
By: Lonely Planet Kids
Take a world tour through 200 countries with this brand new edition of the bestselling kids' version of Lonely Planet's popular The Travel Book, loaded with thousands of amazing facts on wildlife, how people live, sports, hideous and mouthwatering food, festivals and a wide range of other quirky insights on every page. Every single country gets its own dedicated page, and a mix of photography and beautiful illustrations brings each land to life. Perfect for keeping explorers aged 8 years and up entertained on the road. Authors: Lonely Planet Kids About Lonely Planet Kids: From the world's leading travel publisher comes Lonely Planet Kids, a children's imprint that brings the world to life for young explorers everywhere. We're kick-starting the travel bug and showing kids just how amazing our planet is. Our mission is to inspire and delight curious kids, showing them the rich diversity of people, places and cultures that surrounds us. We pledge to share our enthusiasm and continual fascination for what it is that makes the world we live in the magnificent place it is. A big adventure awaits! Come explore. Award-winning children's titles from Lonely Planet include The Amazing World Atlas (Independent Publisher Award, Gold for Juvenile Multicultural Non-fiction, 2015), How to Be a Space Explorer (Independent Publisher Award, Silver for Juvenile Non-fiction, 2015), Not For Parents The Travel Book, Not For Parents Paris, Not For Parents London, Not For Parents New York City, and Not For Parents Rome (all Parent Tested Parent Approved winners, 2012). Lonely Planet guides have won the TripAdvisor Traveler's Choice Award in 2012, 2013, 2014, and 2015.
Brain Teasers (Lonely Planet Kids)
By: Lonely Planet Kids, Sally Morgan
Who's the smarty pants in your family? Packed with number and logic puzzles, riddles, dingbats, codes and much more, this fun and challenging travel-themed activity book is perfect for car journeys, vacations and rainy days-and provides a great test for both kids and adults. Brain teasers include: Scrambled Cities - anagrams of famous places Code breaker - morse code messages to decipher Flagtastic - match the country to its flag World traveler, desert and jungle word searches Say what you see - solve the visual word puzzles Flag finder - crack a series of semaphore messages Riddles of the Sphinx - crafty cryptic questions Arctic explorer crossword and airport sudoku Other Lonely Planet Kids family activity books also available: -Boredom Buster -Round the World Quiz Book -My Vacation Scrapbook -My Vacation Drawing Journal -My Travel Journal -Backyard Explorer -My Family Travel Map -My Family Travel Map: North America -My Family Travel Map: Europe -My Family Travel Map: Australia -My Family Height Chart About Lonely Planet Kids: Come explore! Let's start an adventure. Lonely Planet Kids excites and educates children about the amazing world around them. Combining astonishing facts, quirky humor and eye-catching imagery, we ignite their curiosity and encourage them to discover more about our planet. Every book draws on our huge team of global experts to help share our continual fascination with what makes the world such a diverse and magnificent place - inspiring children at home and in school.
24x36 World Wall Map by Smithsonian Journeys - Tan Oceans Special Edition (24x36 Paper Folded)
By: Smithsonian Journeys
Swiftmaps is proud to partner with Smithsonian Journeys to bring a new and exciting World Map series to the American marketplace. Featuring eye-catching bold and vivid colors complemented with rich vintage tan ocean tones that will make this the perfect reference piece --- sure to stand-out and highlight any home or business wall. The precise detail and digital accuracy shows color-matching visual shaded 3D relief and other physical features without sacrificing the maps readability. Now printed on high-quality 80 lb. paper and professionally FOLDED in a compact 8x10 inch size. FEATURES: 1) Africa centered allowing viewers to see continents complete and intact 2) Clearly labeled country and city names for easy location 3) Latitude and longitude indications 4) Shaded relief of ocean and land topography 4) Desirable Miller Projection. The Smithsonian Journeys wall map series serve not only as a handy reference piece, but as an eye-catching accent for any room or office. NOTE: each map is professionally folded to 8x10 inches and when unfolded the map is 24 inches high and 36 inches wide.
Terms and conditions

Our Mission

Smithsonian Journeys engage travelers in the mission of the Smithsonian – “the increase and diffusion of knowledge.” Like the Institution, our tours enrich our guests’ lives and satisfy their curiosity about the world. Your participation benefits the work of Smithsonian’s 19 museums, National Zoo, and nine research centers, helping to preserve our national treasures and shape the future through science, research, and exhibitions.

What Is Included in the Tour Cost

  • Services of an experienced Travel Director throughout the program. 
  • All accommodations (based on double occupancy). 
  • Meals and beverages as noted in the itinerary (B-breakfast; L-lunch; R-reception; D-dinner). 
  • A rich program of excursions, activities, sightseeing, and visits led by an art historian and other local specialists and/or top guides as noted in the itinerary.
  • Pre-tour information, including a reading list. 
  • All on-tour transportation, unless otherwise noted.
  • On-tour emergency evacuation insurance (up to $100,000), medical expense coverage (up to $25,000), dental expense coverage (up to $500), travel medical assistance and worldwide travel assistance. (U.S. Residents only, excluding U.S. territories.)
  • Personal listening devices
  • Wi-Fi in hotels,  
  • Gratuities for all on tour staff, local guides and drivers. 

What Is Not Included in the Tour Cost

  • Passport fees, visas, and visa photos as required.
  • International and in-country airfare and departure taxes.
  • Transfers to and from airports for individuals not using or meeting the group transfer.
  • Personal items such as wines, liquors, à-la-carte orders, meals other than specified.
  • Expenses incurred by our tour operators in making individual travel arrangements in conjunction with the tour.
  • Other items not specifically mentioned as included.
  • Optional Travelers’ Protection Plan: Unexpected events before or during a trip may leave you with canceled plans, lost luggage, or unforeseen medical expenses. This optional plan offers an affordable package of benefits and services that can provide coverage and assistance for the unexpected. Visit TravelGuard.com/SmithsonianJourneys to learn more.

Registration

To submit a reservation request, please use our secure online system at SmithsonianJourneys.org or contact a Cultural Travel Specialist, at 1-855-330-1542 Mon-Fri 9 am - 7 pm; Sat 9 am – 4 pm (Eastern Time). Submitting an online request does not guarantee space on a tour.  You will be notified by a Reservation Specialist of your status once your request has been received and processed.  

To complete your reservation, the following information is required.
In accordance with the Transportation Security Administration’s (TSA) Secure Flight program, for all international tours, passport information is required, including the following:   Full name as it appears on your passport, Date of birth, and Gender (for further information, please visit www.tsa.gov).

For tours that include round-trip international airfare: If you provide incorrect information to the ticketing agent, or if you use a different passport than originally cited, you will be responsible for charges associated with the ticket’s reissue.

Payments

A deposit of $500 per person for a land tour reservation, unless otherwise noted, is required to reserve a space on a tour.  All payments may be made by credit card or check to the tour operator.  Deposits are applied to final payment of the tour price.

Final payment is due 120 days prior to departure, unless otherwise noted.  Balance is due upon invoicing.  If full payment is not received by the final payment due date, your place cannot be guaranteed on the tour.

Late Registration

Any registration received within 120 days of departure is considered “on-request” and is subject to specific confirmation. Some tours are more restrictive. Payment in full must be made immediately by credit card, or by check sent by overnight mail to the tour operator, before confirmation is possible.

Once confirmed, cancellation penalties apply as set forth below. If confirmation is not possible, all payments made will be refunded in full. Late registration confirmation procedures apply to any traveler who is transferred from the wait list to the tour within the designated late registration period for that tour.

For additional information, please contact a Cultural Travel Specialist, at 1-855-330-1542 Mon-Fri 9 am - 7 pm; Sat 9 am – 4 pm (Eastern Time), at SJReservations@si.edu or SmithsonianJourneys.org.

A Note about Costs

All prices are based on two persons sharing a room/cabin. All prices are quoted in U.S. dollars. Tour costs are based upon current airfares, tariffs, currency values, and on the basis of a presumptive minimum number of travelers. While we will do everything possible to maintain the listed prices, they are subject to change.   Due to fluctuations in oil prices, a fuel surcharge may be added to your tour fee (e.g. internal flights, cruises, etc.).  Details and costs will be advised prior to departure.

Wait List

If the tour of your choice is fully subscribed, you may choose to be placed on a waitlist by contacting a Reservation Specialist at 1-855-330-1542 Mon-Fri 9 am - 7 pm; Sat 9 am – 4 pm (Eastern Time), or SJReservations@si.edu. Individuals on the wait list will be contacted if space becomes available and can inquire about tour status by contacting a Reservation Specialist. If you choose to withdraw from a wait list, please notify us.

Cancellation and Refund Policy

Following enrollment, a traveler’s withdrawal from the tour for any reason, including, but not limited to, illness, injury, family engagements, work-related issues, or geopolitical concerns, etc., will be deemed a cancellation. Please understand that there will be no exceptions to our cancellation policy.

Per person cancellation fees are based on date of written notice to Smithsonian Journeys. Tour operator will refund on the following basis:

  • Cancellations within 7 days of booking:  Full Refund (unless it is within final payment date, 120 days before departure)
  • Cancellations after 7 days of booking:  Full Deposit Retained
  • Cancellations made within final payment date, 120 days before departure:  No Refund
  • Cancellation by Smithsonian Journeys:  Full Refund or Credit

Please understand that there will be no exceptions to our cancellation policy.

Air Service

For tours that include round-trip international airfare, rates are based on economy class from designated departure cities as shown.  Airfares from other cities are available upon request.  Airline upgrades at additional cost may be available on request for the international portion of your flight.  If an air schedule requires an overnight stay in a gateway city, the cost of the overnight will be at your expense.  For tours that include round-trip international airfare, we will be happy to help with arrangements.

Air Service/Tickets Purchased Independently of the Tour

International and domestic air schedules are subject to change at any time. If you make your own airline reservations, we recommend that you do not purchase nonrefundable tickets or tickets with high penalties for changes. 

We urge you to check airline cancellation penalties before purchasing airline tickets since international departure times and flights can change. Neither the Smithsonian Institution nor the tour operator accepts liability for cancellation penalties related to domestic or international airline tickets purchased independently in conjunction with a tour.

Travel Insurance- Cancellation/Delay/Lost Baggage

Smithsonian Journeys recommends that all travelers purchase travel insurance

Travel Documents and Information

Travelers are responsible for obtaining any documents required for their participation in the tour such as a valid passport, all visas, vaccination certificates, and any other documents. If your tour requires a visa or other entry documents, we will send you the appropriate information after you make a reservation.  Failure to obtain documents does not negate the terms and conditions, and any extra costs incurred for rerouting or delay due to travel without the necessary documents will be the participant’s responsibility. If you are not a U.S. citizen, please contact your embassy or consulate to ensure you obtain the proper documentation.

For all international departures, a passport valid for at least six months after the completion of your tour, and with at least six blank visa pages, is required for U.S. citizens on all tours. The U.S. Department of State will no longer add visa pages into U.S. passports beginning January 1, 2016. The decision to discontinue this service was made to enhance the security of the passport and to abide by international passport standards. Beginning January 1, 2016, applicants in need of additional pages in their valid passports must obtain a new passport. For more information on how or where to apply, please visit Travel.State.Gov/ApplyEarly or call the National Passport Information Center toll-free at 1-877-487-2778/1-888-874-7793 (TTY/TTD).

For more information about traveling to destinations abroad, we recommend the “Learn about your destination” section on the U.S. Department of State travel website www.travel.state.gov.  For medical information, we recommend contacting the Centers for Disease Control at (877) FYI-TRIP or www.cdc.gov/travel

Physical and Medical Considerations

To enjoy the travel experience, travelers should be in good physical and mental health. All tours require an element of walking (up to two miles per day over uneven terrain) and of climbing stairs, often without handrails. Travelers should have sufficient stamina to keep pace with an active group of travelers on long days of touring. If you have any questions about your ability to participate in a tour, please call us at 855-330-1542. Any physical condition, diet, or special request for accommodation must be identified in writing on the Personal Information Form when the reservation is made. Some tours have additional information regarding physical and medical considerations, which may be discussed with the Reservation Specialist at 855-330-1542.

Please be aware that health care standards, facilities, and services abroad may be different or even inadequate for treating certain health conditions.  It is essential that you inform us in writing (on the provided Personal Information Form) of any existing condition for which you may require medical attention or accommodation during the tour. We will make reasonable efforts to accommodate the needs of our travelers; however, services of a personal nature cannot be expected or guaranteed. By forwarding the deposit for pre-registration or registration in full, you affirm that you do not have any physical or other limitations that would create a hazard for yourself or other travelers or would require adjustments to the tour for other travelers.

Itinerary or Tour Modifications

Smithsonian Journeys strives to improve tour itineraries and their features. If improvements can be made, or unforeseen circumstances beyond our control make changes necessary, at our sole discretion, we reserve the right to vary itineraries and to substitute elements of the tour.  These elements include, but are not limited to:  hotels, staff, speakers, experts, and services for any stated in the itinerary.

Every effort will be made to carry out the tour as planned but alterations may still occur after the final itinerary has been sent to you. Please note that weather and other conditions may force changes to the advertised sailing schedule on cruise tours. The ship’s captain has the authority to change the ship’s schedule.

Hotel Accommodations

Smithsonian Journeys chooses hotels based on a combination of location, service, atmosphere, and price. On adventure tours and tours in out-of-the-way places, best-available hotels are used.  Tour prices are based on two persons sharing a room with a bath.

Singles and Roommates

Hotel rooms are always reserved for single travelers, however, the number of single rooms available on a tour may be limited. Therefore we recommend that you register early. Please note that a single supplement will most likely apply for a single room.  If you are traveling alone and wish to share a room/cabin, we will do our best to find someone of the same gender and smoking preference to share with you. If you are matched with a non-smoking roommate, it is mutually agreed that you cannot smoke in your hotel room/cabin. When a roommate cannot be found, a single supplement will be charged. Please note that the single rooms in many foreign hotels may be smaller than those to which you are accustomed.

Children

Family journeys are designed for children 8 and older accompanied by at least one adult. The child price is for children between 8 and 11 years old, sharing a room with two adults. A parent or guardian must accompany and share a room with those under 18 years of age.

Special Travel Arrangements

Travelers may wish to extend their stay in the group hotel either before or after the tour. Our tour operators will work with you on these arrangements, dependent upon space availability.  Your pre-tour bulletins will further explain all options.

Should you decide not to participate in certain parts of the tour or use certain goods included in the tour, no refunds will be made for those unused parts of the tour or goods.

Dispute Resolution

If a complaint arises, the traveler should first inform a member of the on-tour staff, so that the staff can attempt to rectify the matter. If the issue remains unresolved, the individual should submit the complaint in writing to Smithsonian Journeys within 30 days of the completion of the tour.

The Smithsonian Journeys staff will make a good faith effort to resolve any dispute.  In the event that the parties are unable to resolve the dispute, the parties may agree to use a method of non-binding Alternative Dispute Resolution to resolve the dispute.  In the event that the parties are unable to agree on the method of Alternative Dispute Resolution to use, or in the event that either party is dissatisfied with the outcome of that alternative dispute resolution method, such efforts shall not constitute a waiver by either party of the right to file suit.

Photography and Video

Travelers on tour may be photographed or recorded (audio and video) for the educational and promotional purposes of the Smithsonian Institution and Smithsonian authorized third parties.  This content may be used in marketing publications and posted on websites to promote Smithsonian Journeys without compensation to the traveler. Travelers who prefer that their name, voice and/or image not be used must notify us in writing prior to the beginning of the tour.

Smoking Policy

 For the comfort of all travelers, we ask that there be no smoking during all group activities, including excursions and meals. On certain cruises, there is no smoking aboard the ship. Your pre-tour bulletins will provide further information.

READ CAREFULLY: RESPONSIBILITY STATEMENT AND LIABILITY DISCLAIMER

Smithsonian Journeys tours are organized and administered by professional tour operators hired as independent contractors. The use of designated tour operators allows the Smithsonian to offer travelers a wide array of educational travel opportunities. The tour operator acts only as an agent for the respective suppliers by making arrangements for transportation, accommodations, and other services. Neither the Smithsonian Institution nor the tour operator shall be held liable for personal injury, death, property damage or accident, delay or irregularity arising out of any act or omission of these suppliers. The Smithsonian Institution and the tour operator reserve the right, without penalty, to make changes in the published itinerary whenever, in their judgment, conditions warrant, or if they deem it necessary for the comfort, convenience, or safety of tour travelers.

The Smithsonian Institution and its designated tour operator also reserve the right, without penalty, to withdraw the tour announced, to decline to accept any person as a traveler in a tour, or to require any traveler to withdraw from the tour at any time (including, but not limited for inappropriate, or offensive behavior) when such action is determined by tour staff to be in the best interests of the health, safety or general welfare of the tour group or the individual traveler.

Dates, schedules, tour details, and costs, although provided in good faith based on information available at the time of publication on the website, in the brochure or catalog, are subject to change and revision.

AS A CONDITION OF ACCEPTANCE OF ANY APPLICATION, EACH APPLICANT MUST AGREE TO THE STATEMENT SET FORTH BELOW:

The undersigned has read carefully the Responsibility Statement and Liability Disclaimer set forth above, the schedule of activities for this tour, as well as the terms and conditions of application and participation as set forth in the tour materials, and recognizes and accepts any risk associated with the tour and the conditions, including the refund policy, set forth in the tour materials. The undersigned further acknowledges that there are many risks and uncertainties inherent in any travel tour, including but not limited to the hazards of various modes of transportation, forces of nature, acts or omissions of foreign governments, terrorism, war or insurrection, theft, illness, and damage to person or property due to the negligent acts or omissions of tour staff or others. In consideration of, and as part payment for, the right to participate in the tour, the undersigned, on behalf of himself, his dependents, heirs, executors, administrators and assigns, agrees to release the Smithsonian Institution, its Regents, officers, employees, representatives or agents, the United States, and the tour operator and its officers, employees and agents, from liability for personal injury, death, property damage or loss suffered by any person in connection with this tour, even if caused by the negligence (but not the reckless, willful, or fraudulent conduct) of tour staff or other related persons or entities. In addition, by registering for this tour, the applicant certifies that he or she is mentally and physically capable of full participation in this tour. By registering for a Smithsonian Journey, the participant agrees to the Responsibility Statement and Liability Disclaimer and the Terms and Conditions herein.