Below are the proposed itineraries for which we will be hosting new and returning guests in Abruzzzo, Italy during 2014.
Accommodating guests’ specific dates is done on a first come, first serve basis. Most tours begin on Sunday.
Culture and Cuisine of Abruzzo (8 days/7 nights)
“Vivere per mangiare e non mangiare per vivere” (Live to eat and not eat to live) -Old Italian proverb. Travel with us to discover the little known treasure of Abruzzese cuisine. Sample astonishing local wines; Trebbiano, Montepulciano D’Abruzzo, Cerasuolo and Pecorino in lush vineyard settings. Take private cooking classes offered by guest chefs and local village cooks. Meet Artisan cheese producers whose families have produced luscious sheep’s and cow’s milk cheeses for generations. Join in on a truffle hunt and sample this “black gold” of Abruzzo in local cookery. Visit a saffron producer; learn the art of olive-oil tasting from a certified olive oil sommelier. Savor master creations at Abruzzo’s best restaurants with chefs hailing from the world famous culinary school of Villa Santa Maria. Discover the breathtaking terrain and attractions that have shaped this rich comestible environment.
Abruzzo Wanderings (8 days/7 nights – by request)
Abruzzo is a land of pathways; ancient shepherds tracks used in migration of flocks, trails through mountain passes and winding streets of medieval towns. Indeed, the evening passeggiata or stroll is an institution in Abruzzo towns where families and friends, young and old link arms and pass the time together at a leisurely pace; in Abruzzo there always seems to be time for everything! We will stroll through medieval villages, marvel at breathtaking mountain scenery and sip aperativi as we gaze at the Adriatic Sea – ah, la dolce vita! Meet the artisans of this culture; visit the town where exquisite majolica that graced the homes of royalty in the 17th century is still produced; a 300 year old olive press, a towering castle perched on a rocky outcrop, an 11th century monastic hermitage built into a mountain crevice. We will sip wine together at private vineyards where the proprietors share their passion for the grapes of the region from robust Montepulciano to delicate Cerasuolo, Trebbiano and pecorino. We will always be in the midst of the people along a road less traveled into the heart of the real Italy.
Abruzzo in the Age of Chivalry (9 Days/8 nights)
Join us for a chivalrous Joust in the Medieval town of Sulmona. This local event, a real-life reenactment of a horseback joust celebrating the heritage of Abruzzo in the Middle Ages, involves the entire city with glorious costumes, processions, trumpets, drumming and, of course, feasting! This is truly the beloved event of the local people, and we are invited to join in with them, and to cheer and toast the victor. Come with us farther afield and experience traces of Medieval Life in the surrounding villages (Santo Stefano di Sessanio), from the castles of the powerful (Rocca Calascio) to the hermitages of the devout; from fine jewelry making to fine cheese, wine, olive oil, and truffles; from the cathedrals where lived the shepherds of the church to the countryside where lived the shepherds whose flocks were the economic backbone of Abruzzo’s Medieval prosperity.
Touring Themes Offered All Year:
The Touring Themes listed below are customs tour options which are offered all year long. They are subject to change and are based on availability and/or guest preferences.
Abruzzo Heritage Tour
If you are curious about your Abruzzese ancestry and if you have family still living in Abruzzo and would like to contact them, we can offer you pre/post tour arrangements to help you find your family or visit your ancestral village. Our experience has shown this to be one of the most delightful experiences; locating long lost family or discovering your ancestral home. Your tour leaders are fluent in both local dialect and the national Italian language.
Roots of the Christian Church
Abruzzo embodies a culture shaped by the growth and spread of the Christian faith, and many congregations thrive in the region. If you or someone from your church would like us to help you develop a spiritual tour, such alternate travel excursions can be arranged. Abruzzo boasts a superb array of cathedrals, monasteries, abbeys and hermitages which speak eloquently of the faith of the ancient church. Explore with us and experience first-hand the origins of Christianity.
Do you want to augment your tour experience with us by exploring one of Italy’s other great cities that you’ve up to now only dreamt about – maybe Rome, Florence or Venice? Plan a 5-day tour or longer with us, and we can offer you one of a variety of Private Excursions. In addition to what will be an unforgettable Abruzzo experience, you can enjoy a personalized tour to an Italian city of your choice at a pace that’s most comfortable for you.Family Encounters – A “heritage tour” – Discover your relatives and family roots.