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Italian Holiday
Dates of Travel:
April 20th to 28th, 2024

4 of 6 spots available! 

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Based in Florence, this tour is designed to take you on an exploration of Tuscany and Emilia-Romagna, allowing you to immerse yourself in the local food and wines of each region. From walking food tours to cooking classes, you will see how the land shapes the cuisine of this country. This tour includes visits to three distinct regions of Tuscany, and guided tours and museum visits in Florence. 

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Day 1

Welcome to Florence! 

You will be greeted at the airport by your guide, and transported to your hotel in a private car. You have individual accommodations in a 4-star hotel in the historic city center.

After settling in, we will take a guided walk around as an introduction to Florence. Next, we will stop for an aperitif, then we have a reservation for dinner at a local restaurant. 

Day 2

The Nectar of the Gods... is it Coffee, Honey, or Wine? 

This morning, our driver will pick us up to take us into Northern Tuscany where we will begin our day will begin our day with a guided tour to learn about the art of Italian espresso, from its history to its future, followed by a five senses tasting experience. Next, we will head to lunch at a local trattoria before we visit  an Italian apiary, where you will learn about the art of Italian beekeeping and taste the local honey. We will end our day with a visit to a local medieval town famous both for being a Medici stronghold and for its production of artisan knives. From kitchen scissors to Damascus steel knives, these works of art are famous around the world. 

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Day 3

Discovering Florence, the Heart of the Renaissance

We will begin our day with a visit to the Uffizi, with its astonishing collection of Renaissance masterpieces. From Caravaggio to Raphael, this museum houses some of the most iconic art in the world. Afterwards, we have a reservation for lunch at a local restaurant with house made pasta. This afternoon, you have free time to explore the city before our optional group dinner reservation. 

Day 4 

Discovering Bologna

This morning, we will take a high speed train to Bologna. Here, we will meet our local guide, an international travel writer and sommelier. She will take us on a walking food tour, introducing us to the quintessential cuisine and wine of the region. From tortellini to tigelle, we will sample our way through the town.  

Our tour will end at Piazza Santo Stefano and the site of the Seven Churches, which dates back to the 5th century and encompasses the history of Christianity in Italy. We will have time to explore the city before we head back to Florence in the evening. 

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Day 5

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Black Roosters, Sloping Vineyards, and Medieval Towns... 

We will begin our day with a stop at a hilltop overlooking Florence. Stunning views of the city, the Arno River, and the surrounding mountains are paired with an exploration of an 11th century church.

Next, we will head south to explore the towns that make up the Chianti Classico region of Tuscany. We will begin with a cooking class at a local vineyard, where we will learn how to prepare classic Italian dishes that pair perfectly with the wines of the area.

After a delicious lunch, we will head further south to San Gimignano, a small, medieval-era, walled town. This evening, we head back to Florence for an optional group dinner. 

Day 6

The Amazing Wine and Otherworldly Beauty of Val d'Orcia

Today, we head south to the area of Tuscany you often see in pictures; rolling hills, clusters of cypress trees, otherworldly views of vineyards and ancient hilltop towns. We begin our day with a stop at a vineyard in Montalcino that produces award-winning Brunello wines. The farm dates back to the 1600s, and we will see the vineyards and tour the cellar, learning about some of the 54 rules the vintner must follow for the production of this wine. Then, we taste! 

Next, we head to a local restaurant for a delicious lunch overlooking the rolling valleys. After lunch, we head to the tiny, historic hilltop town of Montalcino to explore.To finish our day, we will visit Pienza to stroll around this beautiful hilltop town overlooking the famous Val d'Orcia. 

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Day 7

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A Day in the Renaissance City

Now that you have become familiar with this Renaissance city, today is the perfect day to explore Dante's House, the Boboli Gardens, or even the Accademia! Your itinerary will include suggestions for shopping and dining, as well. This evening, we have a group dinner reservation at a lovely restaurant in Florence where we can reflect on our trip and celebrate new friendships! 

Day 8 

Arrividerci! 

This morning, your driver will take you to the airport to begin your journey home. 

Unless... you opt for the extension to Venice! 

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Venice Extension: April 28th to May 1st

This tour offers a fully guided three night extension to Venice. You will depart Florence and take the high-speed train to Venice on Sunday morning, where you will check into your 4-star accommodations in the city center. This extension includes a historic walking tour of Venice, a day trip to Burano, and excursions to the Peggy Guggenheim Collection on the Grand Canal, St. Mark's Basilica, and the Doge's Palace. You will have the opportunity to explore this ancient city and gain an understanding of its diverse history. 

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Arrive in Venice:

We will travel to our hotel on a private water taxi. This afternoon, we will go on a private tour of Venice, learning the history of this trading city.

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Exploring the City:

We will spend a day visiting the Peggy Guggenheim Collection, St. Mark's Basilica, and the Doge's Palace. 

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A Day in Burano:

We will take a day trip to Burano, famous for its colorful houses and lace making. 

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Getting to Know Venice:

Each day, you will have free time to explore the city. 

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WELCOME

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April 20th to April 28th
$4595

with Venice extension:
April 28th to May 1st
$6500

4 spots available!

Inclusions

The Italian Holiday Tour includes the following:

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  • Private driver for transfer from the airport to your hotel in Florence

  • Your own private room in a historic hotel located in the city center of Florence for 7 nights

  • Breakfast each day

  • Private, guided walking tour in Florence with a welcome aperitif

  • Private car for an outing to Northern Tuscany

  • Guided tour and Five Senses Experience at an Italian Espresso Academy

  • Visit to an Italian apiary with honey tasting

  • An outing including entry to the Uffizi

  • Private car and driver for a day visiting the Chianti Classico region and San Gimignano

  • Cooking class and wine tasting at a small, family-owned vineyard

  • High speed, premium class train tickets to Bologna and back

  • Guided walking food tour in Bologna, including all food and wine

  • Private car and driver for a guided outing to Val d'Orcia

  • Brunello wine tasting and vineyard tour

  • Transfer to the airport from your hotel in Florence

Extension Inclusions:

  • High speed premium class train tickets to Venice 

  • Private water taxi to hotel

  • 4-star accommodations in the historic city center of Venice for 3 nights

  • Breakfast each day

  • Private walking tour with a Venetian native

  • Day trip to Burano

  • Entry to Peggy Guggenheim Collection

  • Entry to St. Mark's Basilica and the Doge's Palace

  • Transfer to Venice Airport

Extension must be added at initial booking and requires three total travelers to participate. 

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WELCOME

Welcome visitors to your site with a short, engaging introduction. Double click to edit and add your own text.

Exclusions

Travelers are responsible for:

  • Airfare

  • Travel insurance 

  • Lunches and dinners (with the exception of the cooking class)

  • Personal expenditures

  • 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 

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