Tuscany

A Feast for the Senses

Florence, Bologna, and  Venice 

June 10th-17th, 2023

0/6 Spots Available~

this tour is fully booked

This is a fully guided, women-only, small-group tour. No buses, no roommates, and no mass-produced meals! I will be with you for the duration of the tour, from arrival at the airport to the day we depart. In each place we visit, we will be joined by local guides who will lead us on tours, and our private driver is a Florence native!

Florence Cathedral

Day 1: Arrive in Florence

When you arrive in Florence, we will begin our trip with a walking tour designed to help you orient yourself and gain an understanding of the rich history of this Renaissance city.  You will learn about the famous attractions like the Duomo and the Piazza de la Signora, as well as visit charming neighborhoods like Oltrarno. Our local guide will share stories, show you important landmarks, and even share her favorite local spots with you. 

 

This evening, we will have dinner together at a local restaurant in Florence. 

Inclusions: 

  • Private car transfer from Florence airport to hotel

  • Guided walking tour

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Day 2: A Day in the Chianti Classico Region of Tuscany

This morning, we will embark on our guided tour of the Chianti Classico region. We begin our tour with a visit to the WWII Memorial and American Cemetery in Florence. Next, we head to a quaint, traditional Tuscan town, Castellina in Chianti. 

 

We have reservations for lunch at a local restaurant, then we will spend the afternoon visiting San Gimignano, the oldest surviving medieval town in Tuscany. 

 

To finish our day, we will visit another small production vineyard that overlooks the town of San Gimignano. There, we will tour the vineyard and cellar before we begin our Tuscan cooking class!  We will work together to prepare a traditional three course meal. Afterward, we will eat on the patio overlooking the towers of San Gimignano. 

That evening, we will head back to Florence, stopping at Piazzale Michelangelo to watch the sun set on a spot overlooking the Arno River and Florence. 

Inclusions: 

  • Private car and driver 

  • Guided outing to Chianti Classico region of Tuscany

  • Visit to San Gimignano

  • Tuscan cooking class

  • Private cellar tour and wine tasting

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Day 3: Southern Tuscany: Montalcino and 
Pienza

This morning, we head to southern Tuscany for a day filled with delicious wine, amazing food, and stunning views. 

We start the morning in Montalcino at a small production vineyard. This 17th century farm is the home of an award winning Brunello. After a tour of the cellar and explanation of the process, we will take part in a tasting of 4 different wines. 

Next, we have a lunch reservation at a small, family owned restaurant where we will dine on a terrace overlooking the rolling Tuscan fields. ​After lunch, we will visit the historic hilltop town of Montalcino for a stroll. 

We depart Montalcino and take a drive through this famous area known as Val d'Orcia. Rows of cypress trees, ancient villas, and fields of sunflowers, vineyards, and olive groves make this region one of the most photographed parts of Italy. 

We will end our day in Pienza with an aperitif and a stroll through this charming town.  ​ 

Inclusions: 

  • Private car and driver for the day

  • Cellar and vineyard tour in Montalcino

  • Tasting of four small production wines, including Brunello 

  • Visit to Montalcino

  • Visit to Pienza

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Day 4: A Day of Art and Exploration

We begin our day with a class at one of Europe's top jewelry schools. Working with a master jeweler. we will learn the skills required to create jewelry. You will leave with your own creation~ a bracelet designed and made by you! 

After a stop at a local trattoria for lunch, we will head to Santo Spirito for a tour and viewing of one of Michelangelo's most beautiful pieces. 

This afternoon, you have free time to explore Florence. Visit a museum, tour the Boboli Gardens, wander aimlessly through this amazing Renaissance city; whatever your heart desires! 

Tonight, we have reservations for a group dinner at a cozy Osteria in Florence. 

Inclusions: 

  • Jewelry making class

  • Bracelet you create

  • Entrance and tour of Santo Spirito

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Day 5: Ciao, Venezia! 

This morning we will take the high-speed train from Florence to Venice, where we will step into the magical world of canals, bridges, and hidden alleyways. 

 

We will meet our local guide for a walking tour that will introduce you to Venice’s history and some of her secrets. 

After lunch, we will take a gondola ride, then explore the alleyways of this enchanting city. In the evening, we will enjoy an aperitif and traditional cicchetti, then visit Piazza San Marco and people watch, Italian style!  

 

This evening, we head back to Florence on the train. 

Inclusions: 

  • High-speed train tickets from Florence to Venice 

  • Guided walking tour of Venice

  • Gondola ride

  • High speed train tickets from Venice back to Florence

Day 6:  First stop, Bologna...Then a Spa in the Heart of Emilia Romagna

Today we will hop on the train to Bologna, just a 40 minute ride from Florence. Here, we will embark on a walking food tour with a local guide. As you tour the historic city center and its famous food market, you will learn about the traditions which helped create the food culture in this region. A blend of delicious food and interesting history will lead us to the famous Seven Churches, where our tour ends. 

Next we head east to Palazzo di Varignana for an afternoon spent in their traditional Varsana Spa program. This evening, we have reservations at Aurevo, a restaurant that features a local farm to table menu inspired by a fresh approach to traditional dishes and centered around the resort's olive oils. 

Tonight, you can relax on the terrace that overlooks the fruit orchards and olive groves, or you can hike to the amphitheater for a stunning sunset view. 

Inclusions: 

  • High speed train tickets from Florence to Bologna

  • A walking food tour in Bologna blended with historical insights

  • An afternoon at the Varsana Spa, relaxing and rejuvenating! 

  • Overnight stay at Palazzo di Varignana

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Day 7: Florence and Fiesole

This morning, we will take the high-speed train back to Florence. 

 

We will visit the Galleria dell'Accademia to see Michelangelo's David. Next, you will have the opportunity to climb Giotto's bell tower for 360 degree views of Florence and an up close look at the beautiful Duomo! 

 

This evening a private car will take us to Fiesole, a hilltop town overlooking Florence, where we have a reservation for dinner at an amazing restaurant to celebrate the end of our feast for the senses! 

Inclusions: 

  • High speed train tickets from Bologna to Florence

  • Entrance tickets to the Accademia

  • Tickets to climb Giotto's Bell Tower

  • Private car and driver to take us to dinner in Fiesole

Day 8: Arrivederci!

Today, we depart from Italy. A car will take you to the airport to begin your journey home.

Inclusions: 

  • Car transfer to airport

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This Tour is Full
0 of 6 spots available

Inclusions

The Feast for the Senses Tour includes the following:

  • Your own private room in upscale hotels located in the historic city centers in Florence and Bologna for 7 nights.

  • Breakfast each day

  • High-speed train tickets to Venice and Bologna

  • Private car and driver for our outings to Tuscany 

  • Museum entry tickets the Galleria delll'Accademia  in Florence 

  • Walking tours with local guides in Florence and Venice

  • Wine and oil tasting at family-owned, small production olive farm and vineyard in San Gimignano

  • Tuscan Cooking Class

  • Overnight stay at Palazzo di Varignana with Spa visit

  • Tour, tasting, and dinner at a family-owned, small production olive farm and vineyard in San Gimignano

  • Guided food and history tour of Bologna

  • Private car to dinner in Fiesole

  • Vineyard tour and tasting in Montalcino

  • Tickets to climb Giotto's Bell Tower in Florence

  • Entrance to Santo Spirito 

  • Jewelry making class at LAO Florence with bracelet included

Exclusions

Travelers are responsible for:

  • Travel to and from Florence. I am happy to assist with planning or offer advice

  • Travel insurance REQUIRED (Allianz Global offers great plans for around $150 per person)

  • Lunches and dinners (with the exception of the cooking class in San Gimignano and the walking food tour in Bologna)

  • Souvenirs

  • Tips for Drivers and Local Guides (at your discretion, approximately $75 total)

Payment 

  • 10% deposit to secure your spot. Because of the small size of these trips, it is advisable to secure a spot early. 

  • 40% of trip cost due 120 days out from departure 

  • Balance of trip cost due 60 days out from departure