I really enjoyed this trip mainly because we visited many places which I had never had the opportunity to visit before. Tuscany was quiet for the most part until we toured the city of Florence. Florence was alive with tourists even though we were visiting in late October. Throughout the region the rolling hills dotted with stately cypress trees created a lasting impression of this beautiful region of Italy.
The Amalfi coast was a sharp contrast to the general serenity of the Tuscan region. The weather is a bit warmer and the people seem more vivacious and outgoing. The cities were more alive with tourists and traffic. We stayed in a good hotel in Sorrento for the entire period of our Amalfi visit, and from this point we took daily excursions to the various sites of interest throughout the Amalfi region. As has been mentioned before, several of us did not take the planned excursion to Capri and instead went on our own for the day. It is easy to get there and back and once there we were able to see only the parts of the island we wanted to see rather than go along with a guided tour. The other of advantage of doing it on our own was the price, about half of what the regular tour would have cost.
Overall, I have to give the trip and our program director, Simone, an excellent grade. This was my 15th trip with the GCT/OAT and it was one of the most enjoyable.