Abruzzo…real Italy shared with real passion by Luciana.
‘BACK ROADS of ABRUZZO’ Tour (8 days)
Travel to Italy on the road less travelled as you immerse yourself in true village life in Abruzzo. In this undiscovered gem of central Italy you will certainly travel on the back roads of Abruzzo enjoying its towns and medieval hilltop villages.
Read on to find out more about our “Back Roads of Abruzzo” tour.
ABOUT THE TOUR
Our “Back Roads of Abruzzo’ tour will delight you with all the senses. Discover all 4 provinces of Abruzzo – Teramo, Pescara Chieti and l’Aquila over the 8 days as you experience the best of Abruzzo. Indulge in the delights of Slow Food – such as private tastings of fine local extravirgin olive oils, pecorino sheep’s milk cheeses, Montepulciano d’Abruzzo wines and enjoy your own private cooking class cooking with local ladies. Explore ancient castles, fortresses and medieval monasteries and see exquisite medieval art from the 1400’s.
Over the 8 days the tranquil countryside in Abruzzo wtih the stunning Apennines is your backdrop. You will have time to wander through the uncrowded villages in this hidden corner of Italy and truly live like a local. Dine in sensational slow food restaurants in true Italian style…
This is a fully escorted, all inclusive small group tour (no more than 12 guests…ever) and will be led by Luciana and local guides.
- All inclusive travel within Abruzzo, central Italy – all meals and drinks with meals
- Exclusive small group travel – no more than 12 guests
- Fully escorted and personalised travel with LUCIANA and guides- Abruzzo specialist and English speaking guides
- Tours depart from & return to Rome Termini Station
- Beautiful accommodation – stay in boutique hotels & B&B’s with charm
- All entry fees/activities included
- Private Cooking Class with ingredients, tuition, recipes and souvenir Touring Abruzzo apron
- Private Truffle Hunting with dogs and degustation lunch
- Private Olive Oil Tasting & visit to an artisan Cheesemaker
- Travel Abruzzo at a quiet and leisurely pace, with time to relax and unwind
- Experience true and authentic village life in Abruzzo – enjoy the rich traditions
- Share the passion with Luciana for all things Italian – that only a local can offer
June 17 – 24, 2018 (8 days)
DAY 1: ROME to ABRUZZO – CIVITELLA DEL TRONTO
You will be met this morning by Luciana, your Abruzzo specialist, at Rome Termini station with an airconditioned private minibus to transfer you to Abruzzo. Crossing the Apennines, we will stop for morning tea at the tiny village of Castelli famous for maiolica ware ceramics since the 9th century. The tsars of Russia collected these valuable pieces and now the Hermitage Museum in St Petersburg has a priceless collection there. We see the “Sistine Chapel of Maiolica ceramics and we will visit some artisans working with ceramics today using traditional techniques..
After lunch we arrive at the fortified hilltop village of Civitella del Tronto – which will be our base for the next 3 nights. A private visit of the fortress has been arranged where you will have commanding views over what was once the border of the kingdom of the Two Sicilies and the Papal States to its north. You will also visit a real treasure in the village where your host Guido will take you through his fabulous textile and clothing museum with fragile pieces from the 18-19th centuries.. There is time to stroll through the village exploring the romantic narrow alleys before a magnificent welcome dinner.
DAY 2: CAMPLI - Truffle Hunting - ASCOLI PICENO
Civitella del Tronto has been inhabited since pre Roman times and its first historical records as a fortified village dating back to the 11th century. We will discover more of this beautiful village each day we are here. A real treat is in store though today when we visit Campli. Here we learn all about Abruzzo’s secret – prized truffles. Surprisingly, over 80% of Italy’s truffles come from our region of Abruzzo. Enjoy a private truffle hunt with local hunters and their amazing dogs. A superb truffle degustation lunch awaits where you will indulge in an amazing array of seasonal truffles used in most of the dishes from antipasti, pasta and meat courses. A feast for the senses …squisito! Later in the afternoon, we explore the delightful town of Ascoli Piceno which is in the Le Marche region. There is time for shopping Italian style, time to sit and sip your aperitivo and taste those delectable “olive ascolane” – fabulous local delicacy of stuffed green olives. Marvel at the wonderful churches and spectacular piazza. A truly unforgettable day. Return to your accommodation.
DAY 3: CIVITELLA del TRONTO - 19th century Olive Oil Mill and Tasting - Private Cooking Class - OFFIDA
This morning we have an easy start and we meet a local olive oil producer – and we learn all about the amazing differences between extra virgin, virgin and olive oils and taste his prized extra virgin olive oil. We continue on the back roads of Abruzzo and travel alongside the ancient Roman salt route… with a visit to a private olive oil producer whose family has been producing olives for centuries. Graziano will show us his original 200 year old olive mill!Lunch is in the countryside and we will be welcomed by bellissima Clementina who will show us how to make some local specialties such as gnocchi, timballo and fried cheese before we sit down and eat together. Ah.. life in Italy does not get much better than this…! Later in the day we visit a wonderful village, Offida in Le Marche, whose landscape is covered in fabulous vineyards . See medieval gems in a Benedictine church with amazing frescoes, the local opera house from 1820 and local ladies making beautiful bobbin lace in the streets and in their shops.
DAY 4: PESCARA–Covered Markets- MAIELLA NATIONAL PARK
Leaving the Teramo province we head to the bustling port city of Pescara. Stroll through the lively covered farmers market and taste the local specialty porchetta – roast pork with rosemary and garlic. Visit the fascinating collection at the Museum of the Abruzzo people after your morning coffee and pastry. We head towards the Maiella National Park where we take a stroll along a mountain path with spectacular views out to hills and valleys right out to the Adriatic coastline. Enjoy a welcome drink at your nearby boutique accommodation. A wonderful degustation of Abruzzo dishes awaits to please the senses.
DAY 5: LORETO APRUTINO - Walking Tour - Local Markets - Olive Oil & Ceramic Musem
Thursday is market day in Loreto Aprutino and we can relax with a morning coffee before browsing the colourful local stalls selling everyday wares.. Explore the medieval hilltop town of Loreto Aprutino with our local guide Sandra with private visits to a 19th olive oil mill as well as a ceramic museum featuring 3 centuries (1500’s -1800’s) of exquisite local ceramics- maiolica ware from the village of Castelli. Onto lunch with an exquisite authentic degustation lunch set in a delightful restored stone cellar in the heart of the village of Loreto Aprutino. This evening we can take time for a passeggiata in a nearby village – time to shop, stroll, chat and enjoy an aperitivo in the main square, before supper.
DAY 6: CASOLI - Weekly markets - ADRIATIC COAST - SAN VITO - FOSSACESIA
Today is market day in Casoli and here you can surely practice your Italian with the locals! Meet an artisan jeweller who will tell you more about the traditional ‘presentosa’ pendants of Abruzzo. Head to the Adriatic coast and stop for morning coffee or glorious gelato at the delightful seaside town of San Vito Chietino. It lies right in the middle of the famous ‘trabocchi’ coast which extends from Ortona to Fossacesia. These wooden fishing structures here hail from the 1400’s when the fishermen preferred to fish close to shore for fear of roaming pirates. Visit a Benedictine Abbey with origins back to the 9th century and admire the glorious position and view over the Adriatic coast and the Gulf of Venus. A fabulous seafood lunch overlooking the blue waters is a treat from antipasti to dessert, this is slow food at its best. Explore more of the Maiella National Park this early this evening with sunset drinks and supper.
DAY 7: PALOMBARO - FARA SAN MARTINO - Santo Spirito Gorge and Benedictine Monastery ruins
A scenic drive today skirting the eastern Apennines with stunning views all around. Firstly visit Luciana’s village of Palombaro starting with a passeggiata, take in the local atmosphere and watch the world go by Italian style… Onto nearby Fara San Martino, nestled in the Maiella National Park. These mountains have been known since ancient times as the Montagna Madre – the grand protectress of shepherds, hermits, monks and place of ancient cults of worship by the pre-Roman tribes. Enjoy a short walk through the narrow gorge and see recently completed archeological excavations come to light of a 9th century Benedictine monastery. Truly amazing..Lunch is in a local trattoria with more great dishes to sample from this area. Reflect on an amazing week together over a light supper and relive the special experiences..
DAY 8: SULMONA - RETURN TO ROME TERMINI STATION
Before leaving Abruzzo today and your transfer back to Rome there is time to enjoy the bustling town of Sulmona. Sulmona is the birthplace of the great poet Ovid and was once the headquarters of the Celestine monks from medieval times. Admire the main square, church and medieval Aquaduct still carrying water to this day. Then there’s time to sample the specialties of Sulmona as we visit Confetti producers where sugared almonds have been made according to ancient recipes for centuries. Sunday morning is full of locals enjoying their morning coffee, relaxing and strolling in the warm sunshine…All good things come to an end, and today we bid farewell to Abruzzo and return to Rome Termini station by early afternoon to meet your further travel connections. END of TOUR.
$4840 per person, twin share twin share (AUD$950 single supplement)
$3875 per person, twin share twin share (USD$750 single supplement)