Tour Highlights – PDSD & MSAD Italy

In March, we had students from Phoenix Day School for the Deaf and Minnesota State Academy for the Deaf here in Italy to tour the beautiful country. The weather was awesome throughout the tour with just a small part of rainy weather.

The tour started in Rome where we visited the deaf school and interacted with deaf students/peers. It was fun to see students from different countries who use different languages find ways to communicate through international sign language and gestures. The students also took an introductory Italian Sign Language class and throughout the tour their motivation levels to learn Italian sign language was very high! Of course, they also visited all the best sights such as the Colosseum, Forum, Vatican Museums, St. Peter’s Church, Trevi Fountain and much more.

Then we moved on to Florence where we visited Michelangelo’s David statue, the Ponte Vecchio (old bridge), and the majestic Duomo. We also took side trips to Siena to visit the historic Pendola deaf school with a local deaf guide, and to Pisa to visit the Leaning Tower! We had delicious beef sandwiches from a street stall and also stuffed ourselves with gelato.

Then we moved on to Padua for the last part of our trip. From there we took day trips to Gardaland, Italy’s biggest amusement park, for a day of recreation. We also went to Verona to visit Juliet’s balcony, and Venice for a gondola ride and exploration of the city on water.

Overall it was a fun trip and all the students enjoyed the beautiful sights, great food, and positive vibe of Italy. Plenty of memories were made and plenty of laughs were had!

Hands On Travel is a 100% Deaf-owned, Deaf-led tour operator company that is truly proud to provide inclusive and accessible tours in sign language around the world since 2002.

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