Italy: Rome to Turin

Not only is Italy a land of unforgettable charm and beauty, it is also a land made rich in grace by its colourful history of holy men and women. Follow their paths etched into our faith heritage from the great Christian centre of Rome to sacred towns made famous by St Francis, St Catherine, St John Bosco, Blessed Pier Giorgio Frassati and other great historic figures, events and miracles! Then journey into the heart and soul of Portugal, to join Pope Francis for the 16th International World Youth Day in Lisbon, where young pilgrims from across the globe come together for a week of prayer, worship and celebration.

WYD Lisbon Logo Color
Rome to Turin Map


Rome (3 Nights) • Orvieto • Assisi (2 Nights) • Siena (1 Night) • Pisa • Cinque Terre • Genoa (1 Night) • Pollone • Oropa Mountains • Turin (2 Nights) • WYD Week Lisbon (7 Nights) • Post-WYD Retreat – Fatima area (3 Nights)

  • 22 Days
  • Departs Australia 21 July 2023
  • Returns Australia 11 August 2023
  • Italy & Portugal

FEATURED SAINTS: St Peter • St Paul • St Pope John Paul II • St John • St Francis of Assisi • St Clare of Assisi • Blessed Carlo Acutis • St Catherine of Siena • St Dominic • San Lorenzo • Blessed Pier Giorgio Frassati • St John Bosco • Our Lady of Fatima




After being met on arrival, we will enjoy an orientation drive through Rome to our place of accommodation. Before dinner, we shall celebrate our first group Mass together in the Eternal City, rich in the traditions of our Church.

Rome overnight (D)


This morning we enter into the most visited attraction in Rome – the Colosseum. In 1749, Pope Benedict XIV declared the Colosseum a sacred site, as it was a place where early Christians had been martyred. View also the Circus Maximus and the Roman Forum en route.

Continue along the ancient Appian Way, the oldest road from Roman times, to the ancient Catacombs for a memorable guided tour to marvel at these underground burial tunnels for Christians and Hebrews. On the way, drive by Domine Quo Vadis – the chapel that stands at the site where, according to tradition, St Peter met Christ when he fled from Rome to escape martyrdom.

Our Christian Rome pilgrimage culminates this afternoon at the Basilica of St Paul Outside the Walls as a special tribute to the Church’s greatest evangelist. Here we will celebrate our group Mass.

Set out after dinner to view Rome by night as we discover the city’s renowned monuments from inside our comfortable coach. See the Colosseum alight, the Victor Emmanuel Monument, the Piazza Della Repubblica, St Peter’s Basilica and Capitol Hill. Disembark to throw a coin in the Trevi Fountain before strolling to the Piazza Navona to soak up the vibrant atmosphere.

Rome overnight (BD)


We start our pilgrimage this morning with a spectacular Mass at St Peter’s Basilica before coming to the nearby Vatican Museums.

Wander the spectacular chambers leading to the Sistine Chapel to view Michelangelo’s masterpieces, including the magnificent fresco of the Last Judgment. Continue through to the awe-inspiring St Peter’s Basilica, the largest church in the world for an informative exploration. Our guided tour will feature among other highlights Michelangelo’s stunning Pietà, the tomb of Pope St John Paul II, the great Confessional and the Crypt containing the tombs of the Popes.

Continuing on we visit the impressive St Mary Major Basilica. Onwards to the Basilica of St John in Lateran (First Papal residence) and the adjacent Holy Stairs brought from Jerusalem to Rome in 326AD by St Helena (a favourite of pilgrims, these steps may only be ascended on the knees).

Visit the Basilica of Santa Croce in Gerusalemme with its extraordinary collection of relics from the Holy Land.

Visit the vibrant district of Trastevere, known for its culture and restaurants, and also home to the Sant’Egidio Community, renowned for their work with the homeless, disadvantaged and poor.
This evening we will celebrate dinner at a special restaurant which is a place of evangelisation in the heart of Rome, run by missionary nuns who actually sing the Ave Maria to us between courses!

Rome overnight (BD)


We farewell Rome and journey north to the amazing medieval town of Orvieto. This is the home of the famous Eucharistic Miracle of 1263 which led to the establishment of the Feast of the Body of Christ (Corpus Christi). We will share together a spectacular Mass here.

Through Umbrian countryside, we journey on to Assisi where St Francis tended the poor and sick and founded the Franciscan Order.

On arrival, we will visit the Basilica of St Mary of the Angels on the plain where St Francis spent most of his life. Here we will see the Portiuncola, the thornless rose bush, the cave where the saint returned for prayer and the Chapel where he died in 1226. Here we are also blessed with the opportunity to visit and pray at the tomb of Blessed Carlo Acutis, a young Catholic from Italy with a passionate devotion to the Real Presence of Jesus in the Eucharist and an aptitude for computer programming. From the ages of 12 to 14, he designed a website cataloguing Eucharistic miracles that have occurred around the world, which he launched in 2005. He died of leukemia a year later at the age of 15, offering his suffering for the Pope and for the Church.

Onwards to the Upper Town and our pilgrim accommodation for the evening.

Assisi overnight (BD)


This morning we awake to the sound of chapel bells, cobblestone footsteps and the tangible spirit of St Francis preserved in this holy town.

After breakfast we enjoy a guided tour through some of the town’s highlights including: the tranquil Church of San Damiano and the actual chapel where it all began when the voice of Christ spoke to Francis in the year 1205. Here too we find the first monastery of the Order of St Clare where Clare built her community in close friendship with Francis.

Culminate up at the Hermitage (Eremo delle Carceri), an oasis of peace and tranquillity in the woods built on the site of a simple cave where St Francis often withdrew to spend many hours in prayer. The cave and the Chapel of Our Lady are preserved in the Hermitage.

We end our tour at the Basilica of St Clare where we will proceed to the side chapel to pray before the Holy Crucifix from which God spoke to Francis “Go and repair my Church which as you see is ni ruins”. Here too we can also take the stairway down to the cyrpt where the body of Clare, partially restored, is displayed.

An opportunity presents itself before dinner to attend Vespers in the Basilica of St Clare and listen to the angelic voices of the Poor Clare nuns.

Assisi overnight (BD)


We conclude our time in Assisi with Mass and a guided exploration of the buzzing Basilica of St Francis which occupies the entire western end of the upper town. Construction began in 1228, just two years after the death of Francis and was finally completed in 1250. The Upper Basilica houses the famous fresco cycle of the life of St Francis, historically attributed to the Italian painter, Giotto. Wander through the marvels of the Upper Basilica before our tour descends to the crypt of the Lower Basilica where Francis was laid in 1230 and where we will take some time to seek the intercession of this spiritual legend.

We then board our coach and travel west to Italy’s loveliest medieval city, Siena, birthplace of Saints Catherine and Bernadine. Upon arrival we will visit St Dominic’s Basilica and view the incorrupt head of St Catherine, the mystical bride of Christ. From here we walk through the narrow lanes to the Basilica of St Francis where we will view the Eucharistic miracle of the incorrupt hosts that occurred in 1730, defying all scientific testing. Stroll the Piazza del Campo, one of Italy’s finest Squares and onto the medieval Cathedral of Siena (1263), dedicated to Holy Mary of the Assumption.

Siena overnight (BD)


Departing Siena today, we journey west to Pisa to see the famous Leaning Tower in the ‘Field of Miracles’ and the town’s 11th century Cathedral and Baptistery.

Driving north, we hope to glimpse the spectacular scenery of the Cinque Terre, listed as a UNESCO World Heritage Site and one of Italy’s best kept secrets! This wild but hospitable coastline, with its vineyard and fishing villages at one time could only be reached by boat or train! We will take the opportunity for a pilgrim walk between two of the towns today, as we soak in the glorious atmosphere.

Later in the afternoon we arrive into the coastal city of Genoa, overlooking the Ligurian Sea. The city boasts Europe’s largest medieval historical centre, where you can see the remains of the 17th-century fortifications, among so many others.

Genoa overnight (BD)


This morning we view Genoa’s stunning Cathedral of San Lorenzo – originally built as a basilica in the 1100s and then it was renovated in a gothic style in 1307. A Renaissance dome was added in 1557. The carvings and stonework are exquisite. Inside, the Chapel of John the Baptist is the earliest example of Renaissance architecture in Genoa. It was built to hold the remains of St John the Baptist. The treasury of the cathedral holds his ashes and the platter on which Salome was reputedly presented his head along with a bowl said to be the Holy Grail.

Leaving Genoa today, we journey in the footsteps of Blessed Pier Giorgio Frassati, as our coach takes us into the Oropa Mountains region.

Our first stop will be the quaint village of Pollone at the base of the mountains. Here we will visit the Church of Ss Sebastian & Fabian (locally known as Cangio Church) where Blessed Pier Giorgio’s more formal baptism ceremony took place several months after his rushed baptism as a newborn in Turin. Celebrate a memorable Mass in the Parish Church, La Parrocchia where he often attended Mass. In a letter Blessed Pier Giorgio wrote to the Members of “Catholic Youth” of Pollone, he said: “… I urge you with all the strength of my soul to approach the Eucharistic Table as often as possible. Feed on this Bread of the Angels from which you will draw the strength to fight inner struggles, the struggles against passions and against all adversities, because Jesus Christ has promised to those who feed themselves with the most Holy Eucharist, eternal life and the necessary graces to obtain it.” See here also the Frassati family villa.

Our pilgrimage finally brings us to the Sanctuary of Oropa. Visit here the Old Church of the Brown Madonna. This ancient Basilica, the spiritual heart of the Sanctuary, was erected in the 17th century. Blessed Pier Giorgio came here often to pray at the feet of Our Lady.

See Mt Mucrone – the ‘verso l’alto’ mountain he climbed and take a cable car that goes halfway up the mountain to the lake, to enjoy some time to reflect in this natural, unspoilt setting. (Optional activity – seasonal availability/time schedule permitting.)

We then descend the Oropa Mountains and travel west to Turin where we will spend the following two nights.

Turin overnight (BD)


We begin our pilgrimage today in the footsteps of St John Bosco, as we enjoy Italy’s fourth largest city with elegant Squares, world-class museums and historic caf s flanked by some 18kms of colonnaded walkways. On Don Bosco’s arrival in 1841, just after being ordained a priest, he began his official ministry here.

We will visit the rooms of Don Bosco and the Basilica of Our Lady Help of Christians which was built between 1865 and 1868. Originally this was part of the home for the poor young men founded by Don Bosco. Here we will visit Don Bosco’s tomb, the relics of St Dominic Savio and the tombs of Saint Adventor and Saint Octavius.

Then onto St John the Baptist Cathedral with its Renaissance-inspired structure and the magnificent views from atop its steps. Here too down in the crypt the Holy Shroud of Turin is housed, reputed to be the actual burial cloth of Christ (not for current viewing). Among other holy relics here, we come to venerate the incorrupt remains of Blessed Pier Giorgio Frassati, saint for the modern world and Turin’s holy patron of the World Youth Days. We enjoy a special Mass here and time to pray at Pier’s tomb.

We then visit the Church of San Domenico where Blessed Pier Giorgio took his vows as a Third Order Dominican. See his “office” beneath the clock of the Church of La Consolata from which he conducted his many charitable works. We will visit this beautiful church as well as the Church of La Crocetta where Pier Giorgio was first baptised as a sick newborn and where his funeral Mass was held.

As we traverse the city, we may view the massive Palazzo Reale and Basilica Superga among other sites.

Turin overnight (BD)


Departing Italy today, we join the streams of young pilgrims converging today on Lisbon, the World Youth Day host city and our long-awaited meeting with the youth of the world and our Holy Father.

Upon our arrival, we will be welcomed and ushered to our designated place of accommodation. At this point we will receive our WYD pilgrim’s bag containing the WYD handbook, tourist guide, pilgrim pass, transport card and all the information you need to get around Lisbon and participate in the WYD events.

Lisbon overnight (BD)


Theme: “Mary arose and went with haste.” (Lk 1:39)

AM: MORNING WALKING TOUR OF LISBONThis morning we meet our guide and enjoy a walking tour of Lisbon city. From the scenic Garden of San Pedro de Alcantara – taking in sweeping views of the city, to its narrow streets of the picturesque Alfama district, bustling plazas, and along the riverfront – stopping in Lisbon’s most beautiful and historic churches all along the way. 



AM: MORNING CATECHESISThere will be opportunities for Catechesis, Daily Mass and the Sacrament of Reconciliation.

PM: YOUTH FESTIVAL EVENTSFeaturing music, dance and dramatic performances from around the world in small and large stadiums and venues across the city.


AM: MORNING CATECHESISThere will be opportunities for Catechesis, Daily Mass and the Sacrament of Reconciliation.

PM: YOUTH FESTIVAL EVENTSFeaturing music, dance and dramatic performances from around the world in small and large stadiums and venues across the city.



AM: MORNING CATECHESISThere will be opportunities for Catechesis, Daily Mass and the Sacrament of Reconciliation.

PM: YOUTH FESTIVAL EVENTSFeaturing music, dance and dramatic performances from around the world in small and large stadiums and venues across the city.

PM: STATIONS OF THE CROSSThe focus tonight is on the moving Way of the Cross when we as young pilgrims will contemplate the reality of Christ’s passion and the call to true freedom.


Today will begin the mass mobilisation of pilgrims along set walking paths through the city as we converge on the site chosen for the historic WYD gathering here in Lisbon.

An afternoon of concerts, performances, and song will unfold as we await the arrival of the Holy Father. This begins the main event! Multitudes of young people together with the Pope – a summer evening of unforgettable atmosphere. The celebrations continue all night as we share in a global sleep-out under the stars.

WYD Vigil Site Sleepout (WYD BLD)


As the sun rises, we’ll share in Morning Prayer, breakfast and the climactic WYD Papal Mass with the youth of the world. 

AM: MORNING MASS WITH THE HOLY FATHERThe Pope will concelebrate Mass with thousands of bishops and priests, addressing us and sending us out to the world to witness to our faith, as the Lord did with his Apostles. At the end of the Mass, the Holy Father will announce the place where the next international World Youth Day will be held.



Today we farewell Lisbon for the tranquillity and relaxation of our Post WYD Retreat in the Fatima area. As we depart out of the city, see Europe’s longest suspension bridge and view the inspiring Statue of Christ the King pointing the way north to Fatima. 

Enroute, we will visit the Holy Miracle Church of St Stephen at Santarem containing the oldest recorded Eucharistic miracle.

Arriving at our post-WYD retreat lodgings, we will spend the following days entering into a time of rest, recreation and retreat, as we unwind and process the amazing past days on pilgrimage and WYD experiences.

Fatima area overnight (BD)


This morning we travel to Fatima, where in 1917 the Blessed Virgin Mary appeared to three children as ‘a lady in white’. We will enjoy a tour of the Square (the largest square in Christendom) including the site of the Apparitions, Rosary Basilica with the Tombs of the visionaries, the Museum, Blessed Sacrament Chapel and other main sites. 

Back at our lodgings this afternoon, we enter a time of retreat, prayer and recreation. 

Fatima area overnight (BLD) 


We travel back to Fatima this morning where we will walk and pray the Stations along the beautiful Way of the Cross (the Sacred Way) culminating in the Chapel of Calvary which overlooks all of Fatima. Continue to Valinhos, the site of Our Lady’s appearance to three peasant children Lucia, Francisco and Jacinta. Proceed on to the little village of Aljustrel to visit the homes where the children lived. Finally, we enter the original Parish church and see the Baptismal font where the children were baptised. 

Back at our lodgings this afternoon, we enter a time of retreat, prayer and recreation. 

Fatima area overnight (BLD) 


Today we will be transferred to the airport for our homebound flight connections to Australia. (B) 


MEAL CODES: (B) Breakfast, (L) Lunch, (D) Dinner


  • Return International Economy class airfare from Australia
  • Internal European flights as applicable
  • All prepaid airport taxes, charges and fuel levies (subject to variation)
  • Mass daily (as indicated in the pilgrimage itinerary)
  • University residence lodgings (all rooms with private facilities) with breakfast daily in Lisbon during WYD week (Additional costs applicable for Hotel standard accommodation)
  • Accommodation throughout mostly in multi-share lodgings, hotels, pilgrim/religious houses or retreat centres on pilgrimage programme and retreat days outside Lisbon
  • Meals as included in the WYD registration during WYD week in Lisbon
  • Breakfasts and dinners daily on Pre-WYD touring programme. Other meals included as indicated in the itinerary
  • All transfers and touring as indicated in deluxe air-conditioned coaches
  • All Sightseeing with entrance fees and local guides whilst on pilgrimage as listed
  • Services of a local multi-lingual Tour Director for touring programme / coach transfers (not included during WYD week or during Retreat stays)
  • Tips and gratuities for drivers and guides on tour
  • Full services of the Harvest Support Team during WYD week in Lisbon
  • WYD Lisbon Registration Package including:• Harvest’s management of group registration with WYD Lisbon • Public transportation pass during WYD week (Tuesday to Sunday) • Entrance to all WYD cultural activities • Access to all areas reserved for WYD participants • WYD Lisbon pilgrim’s backpack with WYD Lisbon inclusions
  • Harvest WYD 2023 pilgrims travel pack including travel wallet, baggage tags, pilgrims journal

Not Included

  • Any meals not specified as part of the itinerary
  • All beverages
  • Any additional sightseeing costs or entrance fees not listed in the itinerary
  • Items of a personal nature, phone calls, laundry, etc
  • Any passport or visa fees required
  • Any associated health or vaccination costs
  • Porterage
  • Travel insurance
Photo Gallery
World Youth Day Lisbon 2023
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