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Welcome to Italian Country Escapes

Authentic experiences of the real Italy

  • tour 1
  • Unusual Italy
    — 17 to 21 September 2019 (4 nights, 5 days) — € 1720 pp (see all inclusions)

    By now the weather will be getting cooler and the trees will commence to show their brilliant autumn colours. Driving into the mountains to the small hamlet of Roccapelago you will learn about the siege which took place here in 1393, and the resulting find 4 years ago of 281 naturally mummified remains. This fascinating discovery was made by a couple of local volunteers, one of whom will tell you the story.

    We will also visit the town of Montefiorino, with its castle overlooking the large valley and learn the history of the local resistance in the area during WW2, and see the poignant sculptures in Parco Santa Giulia, dedicated to those who gave their lives.

    At the Carpegiani Gelato museum have an opportunity to make gelato as well as visiting a Balsemaria, where the famous balsamic vinegar of Modena is aged in oak casks for years, the taste test will help you understand about the finer points of this famous product.

  • tour 1
  • Italian Autumn Bites
    — 24 to 28 October 2019 (4 nights, 5 days) — € 1720 pp (see all inclusions)

    October is chestnut season and for centuries, along with parmesan cheese, chestnuts have been the staple of the mountain dweller’s diet. We will be visiting the delightful town of Montecreto to join in their annual Festa di Castagna. While there we taste a variety of chestnut dishes and see demonstrations of different skills from the past.

    The cooler weather means time for trying a hot chocolate, strong enough to stand your spoon in at a rifugo by Lago Santo, and we will also have a degustation lunch at the restaurant Ca’ Cerfogli, famous in the area for its porcini mushroom dishes. Keeping with the food theme we will have the opportunity to taste freshly made ricotta when seeing how Parmigiano Reggiano cheese is made.

    A walk through the woods to Ponte Ercole, a monolithic bridge scoured out of the rocky terrain will leave you wondering about the people who made their way here as far back as in the third century BC.

  • Tour packages include:

    • Accommodation for 6 nights in a unique, recently restored 17th century stone villa, Antica Corte Casa Marini (with lift) near the small town of Polinago
    • Breakfast daily, 6 lunches and 6 dinners
    • All meals include wine, coffee or tea
    • All transport from day of pick up to morning of drop off
    • Cooking classes where mentioned
    • Museum entry where mentioned
    • Visits and tastings at vineyards and balsameria; and visits to the local cheesemaker where mentioned
    • Local guides when visiting Bologna, Modena and Mantua
    • Cost of boat trip on Lake Garda
    • Use of the swimming pool and additional towels at Antica Corte Casa Marini
    • All tours accompanied by a fluent English speaking escort
  • Tours DO NOT include:

    • Airfares
    • Additional museum entry e.g. Ferrari Museums
    • Any meals not listed
    • Any additional snacks or drinks
    • Additional Wines or those selected from the wine lists
    • Travel Insurance (is strongly recommended)
    • Personal Expenses