LUCCA & LIGURIA
JUNE 19 - 26, 2022
An Italian land and sea escape, exploring the walled city of Lucca and the sparkling Ligurian coast.
Lucca and it's environs offer some of Tuscany's most hearty and rustic dishes that are still served today as they were during the Renaissance. Here we will enjoy cured meats like finocchiono, prosciutto, wood oven fired cecina (also called farinate), bean and summer vegetable dishes. Learn to make a full Tuscan dinner including the local tordelli pasta, at a charming agritursimo in the woods.
Just a little over an hour away, we move northwest to Liguria, which feels worlds apart from the medieval streets of Tuscany. Brightly colored villages dot the coast where fish, pesto, focaccia, olive oil, and citrus are the stars, and the scent of wild herbs permeate the salt air. Follow the goat paths through vineyards that cling to the mountainside to taste the region's crisp, fruity, white wines and the rare schiacchetra, a sweet wine produced here.
NOTE: During certain legs of travel in Liguria we will be taking ferries and a short train ride (10-12 minutes as locals also do), as the Cinque Terre National Park's roads often do not have guardrails on many points along the mountainous coast. Due to rainy weather conditions in previous years it is safer and faster to use the train or ferry system when traveling between the Cinque Terre villages. For travel to other points in Liguria we will travel by normal modern highway.
Palazzo Di Pinto,
We start our journey spending the first 3 nights in the the medieval center of Lucca at Palazzo Di Pinto, located within the city's medieval walls. Shops, bars, and restaurants, are at your doorstep.
Each room has a double bed, en suite bathroom, and modern amenities including, air conditioning, TV, and Wi-fi,. Breakfast is included each morning.
We will pick you up at the Lucca train station and all guests will be transported by private driver to our hotel in the historic center. Light lunch, then we will meet for aperitivo followed by dinner at a local trattoria.
COOK ON AN ORGANIC FARM IN THE ENCHANTED WOODS.
Food and history crawl in the morning to taste some of Lucca's local dishes and visit some of the sights. Later we make our way to an agriturismo in the
little village of Vagliano, to cook dinner together and dine al fresco on the farm. (Bonus: Hear about the legend of a female dwarf that protects these woods, for whom the owners have named their property after, La Forestaria.) Dinner tonight in Lucca.
FULL DAY IN FLORENCE
Discover the very cool neighborhoods just across the Arno River on a food crawl today.Free day to explore the city, then aperitivo and dinner tonight in San Frediano, recently listed by Conde Naste as the "coolest neighborhood in the world".
La Toretta Lodge,
Manarola, on the Ligurian Coast
Surrounded by wild herbs, olive groves, vineyards, and flowers, Agriturismo Villanova is set just outside of the Cinque Terre villages, on the edge of the national park. This in Cinque Terre without the tourist crowds. Wander the footpaths that lead through the Ligurian woods, down the to beach and to the main village of Levanto.
Villanova is a 17th century villa and sustainable farm. The property produces wine and olive oil, as well as fruit and herbs which guests may pick at anytime to add to their meals.
All accommodations have Wi-Fi, air conditioning, and breakfast included with all stays.
TRANSFER TO THE COAST
Transfer to the coast today and check into Toretta Lodge in one of the Cinque Terre villages, Manarola, for the second half of our trip. Wine tasting and lunch in the cantina at Buranco Winery. Dinner tonight in Manarola.
SAIL TO THE VILLAGES
One of the best views of the Cinque Terre villages is from the sea. We enjoy light lunch and wine aboard a private boat and sail to The Gulf of Poets in Portovenere. Stop to swim in the coves and visit one of the Cinque Terre Villages. Dinner in Cinque Terre tonight.
LIGURIAN COOKING CLASS
Rise early today as we head to Chiavari to make the local specialty street foods of focaccette, farinata, and Pasquelina pie with an Italian chef-food writer in her 18th century villa and enjoy lunch together in her garden. Free time in the center of Chiavari after lunch to visit the corzetti stamp shops. Dinner on your own tonight in Manarola.
WINE TREKKING & TASTING ON THE TRAILS
Follow the food and wine trails with a local guide through colorful streets, vineyards, and coastal paths. This is an easy trek on a downhill trail which is not crowded with tourists. Seafood dinner tonight one of the Cinque Terre villages.
DAY 8 ARRIVIDERCI!
After breakfast we will depart the agriturismo and return you to Lucca train station to connect to the airport. A private driver is available at an additional charge for airport transfers to Pisa or Florence airports.
Lucca & Liguria 7 night tour rate
$3,700.00 total cost per person, double occupancy
Included in price:
3 Night accommodations at
Palazzo DiPinto, Lucca, Italy.
4 Nights at La Toretta Lodge, Manarola, Italy.
Double Room, Queen size bed, air conditioning.
En-suite private bath, TV, Wi-Fi.
3 Hands-on cooking classes
5 Lunches & 7 Dinners.
Wine included with all meals.
Private transportation costs during tour, and
transportation by boat or train between Cinque Terre villages.
All fees for excursions outlined in itinerary.
All taxes and gratuities.
Transfers to and from Lucca.