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TourCrafters' 12-day family packages in Italy starting at US$587 per person

TourCrafters' 12-day family packages in Italy starting at US$587 per person (Forimmediaterelease.net) LIBERTYVILLE, IL - A family can have a fabulous vacation in Italy this year for less than a vacation on the Jersey Shore… and let's not even mention the Hamptons. TourCrafters has put together some surprisingly inexpensive family packages that combine city stays — for culture and sightseeing — with country and seaside stays — where the kids can run loose — and a rental car or mini-van. All apartments have kitchens, which means making pasta for the family at dinnertime, after the fun of shopping in an open-air market (or a wonderful Italian supermarket).

A 12-day Florence and Tuscany package (land-only) includes four nights at the elegant, air-conditioned Palazzo Ricasoli apartments in Florence and seven nights in the countryside at the more rustic Principe del Trasimeno apartments on Lake Trasimeno, where there's access to a pool, gardens, barbecue, and laundry. A seven-day car rental is also part of the package. The package starts at US$2,559 for a family of four — or only US$639.75 per person — from July 13 to August 31. (Prices are slightly higher in June and early July).

A 12-day Florence and Tuscany package for a family of six starts at US$3,525, or only US$587.50 per person. This one includes four nights at the centrally-located Fiesolana apartment, which is just steps from Florence's Duomo, plus seven nights at Principe del Trasimeno and a seven-day mini-van rental. Still another package pairs the Fiesolana apartment and mini-van with an apartment at Querciasecca in the Maremma, which is little more than a mile from the sandy beaches of the Tyrrhenian Sea.

The most glamorous and expensive package — Rome and Amalfi — combines four nights in the newly-renovated and air-conditioned Oxford apartments on Via Flavia in the center of Rome, with seven nights in the Villa Anna on the Amalfi Coast. Villa Anna has a fine view of the sea from its terrace and lemon trees in its garden, plus a color TV for the kids. (Since the coast is cliff-like and the terrace walls low, children under 12 years are not accepted.) The price of the 12-day package, including a mini-van, starts at US$5,399 for a family of six, or US$899.83 per person.

There's also a 9-day Rome and Apulia package for a family of four that includes four nights at the Oxford apartments and a mini-van with four nights at the charming Corte Altavilla apartments, which are in the countryside but close to the white sand beaches that line the coast of Apulia on the heel of the Italian boot. This one starts at US$2,455, or US$613.75 per person.

Since air fares to Italy are changing daily, these packages do not include transatlantic air fare, but many families can choose to get tickets with mileage on their favorite frequent flyer program. Note that prices may be lower for families with young children.

For additional information about these and other family packages in Italy, visit www.tourcrafters.com. For reservations, call 800-482-5995.

Barbara Gillam BGPR Phone: 212-288-1405 Email: BGPRnyc@aol.com

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