Category Archives: Featured

Venice 101

Oh, Toto…I don’t think we’re even in Italy anymore.

Venice is not just any city. The streets are made of water, there’s not a right angle to be found, and the system of convoluted alleyways can be difficult to navigate even for a local. That’s why having a personal, practical, on-site introduction can make all the difference in how enjoyable the rest of your stay can be.

VENICE 101 begins with an e-mail containing detailed arrival instructions according to your lodging and your means: air, train, or car — even how to save money on travel passes. We’ll track your actual arrival and arrange to meet you shortly thereafter. Instead of wandering about, though, we’ll choose the perfect spot in your specific neighborhood (likely a nearby cafe) to sit, chat, and orient you to the city.

We’ll dot your map with locations for any activities you already have scheduled, make suggestions for things to keep an eye out for as you wander. We’ll have eating tips of all types, and make reservations if you’d like (definitely for your first night). We’ll include a complete explanation of the vaporetto and traghetto and how best to take advantage of them. We’ll tell you of any last minute goings-on, answer any specific questions, and include insider recommendations – all according to you personal interests and mode of travel.


  • a highlighted city map
  • transport system explanation and orientation, including nearest vaporetto stops & the Vap Map
  • vaporetto explanation with exclusive Venice Vaporetto Guide & cheat sheet
  • the current Venice guide and calendar from the TI, with hours, openings, and current events
  • dinner recommendations and reservations
  • suggestions for how best to organize your time according to your interests and itinerary
  • pointing out of convenient vaporetto and gondola ferry locations

We include coordinated city-wide explanations between maps and principal thoroughfares, shortcuts, navigation tips along orientation keys and landmarks, ways to get un-lost, along with shopping tips, current exhibitions, along with notable enoteche, eateries, favorite gelato bars, and more.


  • 1.5 hour meeting
  • arrival tracking
  • detailed arrival advice and instructions
  • maps and other materials
  • vaporetto and city orientation
  • expert eating recommendations from pizza to alta cucina

COST (kids don’t count when calculating number of people):

1-2 pp:       €85
3-4 pp:       €100
5-6 pp:       €115

Additional time available at €25 per half-hour (1 – 6 pp).

Italy: Instructions for Use

When all else fails, read the Instructions.

The palm-sized answer guide that concentrates solely on the practical aspects of Italian travel: like having an expert consultant in your pocket.

The compact, color-coded, illustrated handbook packed with the most current, pertinent, easy-to-locate info available. Because it concentrates solely on the practical aspects, the Instructions contains a host of specifics the other guides simply don’t have the expertise or space to include. Portable and practical, it’s like traveling with an expert in your pocket.

Not what or where, but HOW.

“I’ve been traveling in Italy for over 20 years and seldom do I find a book as useful and eye-opening as Italy: Instructions for Use.

–Martha Bakerjahn.,’s Go Italy

There’s a reason they call it “independent travel:” you’ll be responsible for everything you do once you arrive in Italy. And while it’s certainly not a desert, it is in fact “foreign,” and to get the most you’ll want to be as comfortable as possible in your new surroundings. You could follow an a-b-c outline in that hefty guidebook, but for meandering outside the lines, the Instructions will be just the ticket. You’ll find detailed info on hours and eating, shipping and shopping, driving and training, making phone calls – whether from a cell or a pay phone – and much, much more. It’s the ultimate in insider info.

~ Read traveler reviews on ~

Try a *Free* Taste of the Instructions as You Plan

Download the free preparation pdf, Planning Your Italian Adventure. You’ll find advice and considerations for all your getting-ready-to-go questions as you begin to create your itinerary. There’s info to help you make decisions about where to go and when, what to take and what to leave, whether to drive or take the train, buy or rent a cell phone, and more (yes, the water is safe to drink, it’s just it tastes better in some places than others).

~ DOWNLOAD ~ the free preparation pdf,
Planning Your Italian Adventure

Travel joyously and fearlessly, with expert knowledge at your fingertips.

The Instructions for Use Travel Series features the only guides that focus solely on the practical, cultural aspects of independent travel. Written by in-country experts and passionate travelers, these compact, color-coded, illustrated handbooks are packed with the most current, pertinent, easy-to-locate info available. Because they focus on the practical aspects, the Instructions guides contain a host of specifics the others simply don’t have the expertise or space to include. It’s like having a private travel consultant right in your pocket!

Taking a cruise, exploring on your own? On your honeymoon? Are you studying abroad, or signing up for private language study? On a business trip and need a cultural reference manual? The Instructions Series was created with you in mind.

It’s the “operations manual” that answers all your practical questions at the moment you have them, for Italy, France, and Greece.

Italy: Instructions for Use is the indispensable compendium that’s as elegant as it is useful, containing all the information the other guides simply don’t have the space or expertise to include. From preparation to the return flight home, the Instructions provides just the information you need, at the moment you need it. Just remember…

…when all else fails, read the Instructions.