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Home > Italy > Itineraries > Italy Wine Itinerary

Italy Wine Itinerary

Departures

May to October

Duration

18 days

Locations

Milan - Piedmont - Bologna - Florence - Rome - Amalfi Coast

Overview

Italy is simply synonymous with delicious cuisine. For many chefs and passionate foodies, Italy is home to the finest food in the world, with fresh produce and traditional regional specialties to be discovered in every corner of the country. With food firmly ingrained in Italian culture, many regions, cities, towns, and villages have been shaped by their relationship with food, something best discovered through this compelling, 14-day trip. You’ll begin your adventure in the northern city of Milan, famous for its shopping and fashion, art, and architecture. Next, head to the foot of the Alps – Piedmont is a beautiful region blessed by sublime natural landscapes dotted with vineyards and home to hidden truffles. In Emilia-Romagna, you’ll sample delicious Parmesan and ham with a gastro-tour of Parma, before exploring the mesmerizing medieval city of Bologna, completing your experience with a cooking class led by a local chef. A three-night stay in Florence follows, with time spent walking through the classical architecture of the city and sampling mouth-watering gelato. Two nights in Rome are next, where you will witness incredible Roman ruins and striking landmarks, and try your hand at making pizza. The final three nights will see you on the glistening Amalfi Coast, where you’ll explore the ruined Roman city of Pompeii, visit a pasta factory, and sample tasty mozzarella and limoncello.

Itinerary in Detail

    Day 1 - Milan

    Take a private transfer from the airport to your hotel in Milan.

    Hotel: Mandarin Oriental Milan or Four Seasons Milan

    Mandarin Oriental - Milan

    Duomo di Milano

    Day 2 - Milan

    Today’s private tour of Milan includes Leonardo da Vinci's “The Last Supper.” This dynamic city is known worldwide for its glamor and you'll enjoy a time exploring all its gems. The cathedral is the fourth largest in the world – a spectacular example of Gothic architecture. The Milanese love to shop, and you'll visit the beautiful Galleria Vittorio Emanuele today, one of the world's oldest shopping malls. Via Montenapoleone and Via Della Spiga are considered one of the most critical zones for shopping. You then continue to the Piazza Della Scala, home to La Scala Theatre and the majestic Castello Sforzesco. The Dominican convent adjoining the church of Santa Maria Delle Grazie houses one of the most important masterpieces in the world, da Vinci’s “The Last Supper.” Only a small number of people are admitted at a time to help protect the fragile fresco.

    Hotel: Mandarin Oriental Milan or Four Seasons Milan

    Mandarin Oriental Milan

    Day 3 - Piedmont

    Today, you take a private transfer to your hotel in Piedmont and spend the rest of the day at your leisure.

    Hotel: Relais Villa D’Amelia

    Relais Villa D’Amelia

    Day 4 -Piedmont

    Discover the art of truffle hunting on a private experience accompanying a trifolau and his trusted dog, as they search the woods for this prized tuber.

    Hotel: Relais Villa D’Amelia

    Relais Villa D’Amelia

    Day 5 - Piedmont

    Some of the finest Italian wines come from Italy’s Piedmont area; the rolling hills of Monferrato, Le Langhe, and Roero are responsible for Barolo, Barbaresco, and Barbera red wines and the white wines of Asti and Moscato. Along with the more well-known names, you will taste several indigenous grape varieties that do not make their way out of Italy, such as Dolcetto, Ruche, Grignolino, and Arneis. A must for any wine-lover, this tour will take you to a variety of local wineries and give you ample chances for tastings.

    Hotel: Relais Villa D’Amelia

    Relais Villa D’Amelia

    Day 6 - Bologna

    Today, you take a private transfer to Bologna stopping first at a Parma ham facility. Culatello di Zibello is a sort of “super ham,” strictly tied to the Po River area, handmade only in winter in eight small villages of the Bassa Parmense. This is a strip of land running along the right side of the Po River, which includes Busseto, Parma Polesine, Zibello, Soragna, Roccabianca, San Secondo, and Colorno, approximately a one-hour drive from Parma. The tour includes a visit to the aging rooms of a ham producer, owned by the same family for more than 200 years.

    Hotel: Grand Hotel Majestic

    Grand Hotel Majestic

    Day 7 - Bologna

    Today, you will attend a cooking class in the historic university quarter of Bologna, learning the techniques and recipes of some of Italy’s finest cuisine. Your experience will be under the guidance of Chef Rita, a Bolognese who is passionate about her stunning medieval town and its food. With Rita as your guide, your experience will begin by exploring the labyrinth of food stalls in the medieval markets, shopping for the day’s meal the same way the Bolognese have done since the Middle Ages. Wild asparagus, glossy eggplants, firm artichokes, ripe tomatoes – all vie for your attention as you hand-pick the freshest vegetables for your menu. Follow the scent of the bakery to choose crunchy Italian focaccia, and stand under hundreds of kilos of hanging prosciutto to choose your meats – the choices are endless. The cooking class is held in Rita’s family kitchen, and once you enter her elegant, stone-floored, 15th-century home in the center of Bologna’s Old Town, you feel as if she has invited you to dinner. The twist is: You get to cook.

    Hotel: Grand Hotel Majestic

    Grand Hotel Majestic

    Day 8 - Florence

    A visit to the Ferrari Museo Maranello is on the agenda today, on your way to Florence. For any visitor to Italy – motor enthusiast or not – this is a must-do. The whole history of this quintessentially Italian icon is on display, including the first Ferrari car, right through to the current models – a collection of priceless racing cars covering some eight decades. You will even get to see a reproduction of founder Enzo Ferrari’s office in Modena, which includes much of the original furniture.

    Hotel: Four Seasons Florence or Villa San Michele

    Four Seasons Florence

    Day 9 - Florence

    Explore Florence’s Renaissance past with this guided walking tour of the city's historic center. The Accademia Gallery is home to Michelangelo's “David,” one of the finest sculptures ever created. You'll also admire the church of Santa Maria del Fiore, the famous Duomo, the nearby Campanile of Giotto (bell tower), and Ghiberti’s enchanting Gates of Paradise. Continue to the Piazza Della Signoria, the center of Florentine politics and home to a captivating outdoor sculpture gallery. Shopping, architecture, and history will collide as you stroll over the Ponte Vecchio. One of the best things about this tour is that it can be tweaked to suit your interests.

    Hotel: Four Seasons Florence or Villa San Michele

    Four Seasons Florence or Villa San Michele

    Day 10 - Florence

    How about a gelato-tasting tour? Today, you will learn how gelato was invented, seeing how it is made on the premises of a gelato parlor.

    Hotel: Four Seasons Florence or Villa San Michele

    Four Seasons Florence

    Day 11 - Florence

    A bike ride through the Chianti countryside is the perfect way to see this beautiful area. You will be provided with 21-speed mountain bikes, helmets, and water bottles, before setting off on your adventure, riding past rolling green hills along roads lined with cypress trees. You will also have the chance to visit small churches, quaint medieval villages, and a local winery. The tour ends with a delicious Tuscan meal.

    Hotel: Four Seasons Florence or Villa San Michele

    Four Seasons Florence - Whirlpool

    Day 12 – Rome

    After taking the train from Florence to Rome, you will take a private transfer to your hotel in Rome.

    Hotel: Hotel Eden or Hotel de Russie

    Hotel Eden

    Day 13 – Rome

    No visit to Italy would be complete without tasting an authentic Italian pizza. But what better way to experience this iconic Italian dish than by making your own? You’ll be welcomed by a professional pizza maker and taken through the whole process – kneading the dough, creating the topping, popping it into the oven, and, best of all, eating your creation.

    Hotel: Hotel Eden or Hotel de Russie

    Hotel Eden - Lobby

    Day 14 – Rome

    Today, you will tour the sites of ancient Rome. Discover the great Roman Forum, for centuries the center of civic life as the site of triumphal processions, elections, public speeches, and criminal trials. Then, along the Via Sacra (Sacred Way), you head to Palatine Hill, one of the most ancient areas of the city, where you’ll enjoy a breathtaking view of the Circus Maximus, an ancient chariot-racing stadium. You then enter the magnificent Colosseum, considered one of the greatest works of Roman architecture and Roman engineering, capable of seating up to 50,000 spectators.

    Hotel: Hotel Eden or Hotel de Russie

    Hotel Eden - Suite

    Day 15 – Amalfi Coast

    A visit to Pompeii is probably the closest you will get to traveling in a time machine back to ancient Rome. In August of 79 AD, the Vesuvius volcano had been rumbling for days and it is estimated that a large part of the Pompeii population of 20,000 had been evacuated. Those that were left were covered in lava as if suspended in time, as the plaster casts made of the remains show. Excavation of the site began in the 18th century and continues today. You will walk Roman streets, and stroll into Pompeii villas complete with frescoes and mosaics, there is even a mosaic doormat, saying, “Beware of the dog.” Even graffiti (an Italian word) is written on some of the walls, reflecting a forthcoming election.

    Hotel: Belmond Caruso

    Belmond Caruso

    Day 16 – Amalfi Coast

    Handcrafted pasta is definitely something the Campania region can be proud of. Today, you'll enjoy a tour of a local factory that has been producing pasta since 1848. Everything they make is handmade, using a method that has been employed for centuries. The resulting rough, porous surface allows the pasta to hold its sauce well, giving dishes a wonderful flavor. You'll also visit a local mozzarella factory, the oldest on the Sorrentine peninsula, which also produces the region’s famous limoncello.

    Hotel: Belmond Caruso

    Belmond Caruso

    Day 17 – Amalfi Coast

    Discover the spectacular Amalfi Coast today, situated like an amphitheater among the mountains and the sea. Visit Ravello and the Villas Rufolo and Cimbrone, two sites not to be missed for their splendor and beautiful gardens. You'll also take in the wonderful Positano, considered one of the most picturesque of all of Italy’s coastal resorts.

    Hotel: Belmond Caruso

    Belmond Caruso

    Day 18 – Amalfi Coast

    It is time to say goodbye to Italy, with a private transfer to the Naples airport.

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