Northern Italy Discovery, Cookery & Foodie Experience

Bologna – Ravenna – Ferrara - Mantova – Verona – Palladio - Venice



DAY ONE – Monday


 Bologna & Foodie


·       11:00am: Meet your Host in Bologna to explore the town in all its ancient and fascinating beauty on a lovely walking tour

·       Your Host will walk you through the history and architecture of Bologna and to see the University of Bologna, the oldest University in the world that has been operating since the year 1088, all beautifully combined with a foodie experience under the famous Portici that will also lead you to discover Bologna’s culinary tradition, typical dishes and its flavours as you taste excellent Parmigiano, Balsamic Vinegar, local cheeses, olive oil, Mortadella Bolognese and typical dishes and breads

·       Lunch will be with the locals, followed by Italian gelato

·       Afternoon and evening at leisure for a passeggiata around town and dinner arranged by Guests

Selected Accommodation in the heart of Bologna:

  • Art Hotel Commercianti – 4 Star: LINK
  • Deluxe Rooms


DAY TWO – Tuesday


Ravenna & Mosaics – Ferrara


·       After breakfast, morning to discover the beauty of Ravenna and its superb byzantine mosaics in the Basilica of San Vitale

·       Both a former capital of the Roman and the Byzantine Empires, Ravenna is a fascinating discovery of art, architecture and history with its Unesco World Heritage Sites of Basilicas of San Vitale and Sant’Apollinare in Classe and Mausoleums

·       Typical lunch by the Adriatic Sea at Marina di Ravenna

·       After lunch we immerse ourselves in the fascinating Renaissance town of Ferrara, where our Host will guide us through the intriguing history and architecture of a town contended by the Este Family and the Papacy for centuries, as we visit the imposing Este Castle, the impressive Cathedral of Saint George with its Gothic façade and juxtaposition of several styles and the several Renaissance Palazzi

·       Dinner will be either in Ferrara or in Bologna followed by evening at leisure



DAY THREE – Wednesday


Bologna - Cookery Experience - Bologna Hills & Wine Tasting Dinner


·       This morning, sleeves up for a cooking session at an exclusive Bolognese venue with our Chef and Hosts

·       The fruits of our labour will feature at our lunch

·       After lunch, an excursion into the rolling hills of Bologna to enjoy panoramic views and a wine tasting

·       Afternoon to further explore Bologna for some shopping, mingling with the locals, visit to the Museums and Art Exhibitions or sipping an Espresso or an Aperitivo in the lively Piazza Maggiore

·       Dinner arranged by Guests and evening at leisure in Bologna



DAY FOUR – Thursday


Modena– Parmigiano Reggiano – Prosciutto di Parma - Mantova


·       This morning we say goodbye to our Hosts in Bologna and start a Foodie Day of tastings and visits to the staples of the Emilia-Romagna region

·       We head towards Modena, the town famous for its highly appreciated balsamic vinegar and for Ferrari

·       Visits could include the Ferrari Museum and a Traditional Balsamic Vinegar producer

·       Lunch will be in the Emilia Romagna countryside, where our Hosts will welcome us to their estate with a sumptuous lunch featuring their very own authentic Parmigiano Reggiano and Prosciutto di Parma, the real exquisite Italian flavours of the region

·       After lunch, visit to the cheese factory before heading off to reach Mantova for the evening

·       Dinner and evening at leisure in Mantova

Selected Accommodation in the heart of Mantova:

·       Ca’ Uberti Palace Hotel – 4 Star: LINK


DAY FIVE – Friday


Mantova – Verona – Piazza Erbe – Arena - Romeo &  Giulietta


·       This morning, walking tour of Mantova with your Host through the beauty of Piazza Sordello as we approach Palazzo Te and Palazzo Ducale

·       Visit to the Palazzo Ducale of the Gonzaga Family to admire the masterpieces painted by Renaissance artists Pisanello and Mantegna

·       After a typical local lunch, departure to reach Verona, the town of Romeo & Giulietta of Shakespearean fame

·       A walking tour of Verona to discover the Arena Amphitheatre, the Casa dei Capuleti and Juliet’s Balcony, among the highlights

·       Dinner in the heart of Verona arranged by Guests followed by a good night’s rest

Selected Accommodation in the heart of Verona:

·       Hotel Touring Verona – 4 Star: LINK


DAY SIX – Saturday


Palladian Villas & Gardens - Verona

·       After breakfast and check out,  departure for a day of architectural beauty and inspiration as we visit the monumental Palladian Villas of the Veneto region

·       Our first destination will be the iconic Villa Almerico Capra, also known as La Rotonda, built atop a hill on the outskirts of Vicenza and the very inspiration for the White House

·       Our next visit will feature the nearby Villa Valmarana Ai Nani with its beautifully landscaped Italian Garden and its stunning  1757 frescoes by Giambattista and Giandomenico Tiepolo, the absolute highest expression of 1700s painting

·       After a typical lunch in the area, return to Verona

·       Evening at leisure to explore Verona on your own, meet the locals and immerse yourself in the elegance of La Dolce Vita


DAY SEVEN – Sunday


Villa Pisani National Museum – Venice – Piazza San Marco


·       After breakfast, time to leave Verona and head to Venice

·       En-route visit to the Queen of Venetian Villas that draws inspirations from the Palladian School, Villa Pisani

·       Lying along the extension of the Venice Grand Canal, Villa Pisani welcomes visitors with its grand ballrooms and masterpiece frescoes, art and furniture pieces dating back to the XVIII century that exude beauty, grace and elegance

·       Our visit will include a stroll through Villa Pisani’s breathtaking Italian Garden with its flamboyant sights, original architecture, its famous maze and its valuable citrus fruit collection 

·       After lunch in the area, we reach the stunning beauty of nearby Venice and its Lagoon

·       Check in at Hotel and guided walk around Campi & Campielli, Rialto Bridge, San Marco Square and Ponte dei Sospiri Bridge before dinner

Selected Accommodation in the heart of Venice:

·       Hotel Ai Cavalieri Venezia – 4 Star Superior: LINK


DAY EIGHT – Monday


Unique Tour of Venice - Basilica Santa Maria della Salute

Canal Grande

  • This morning,  meet your Host in Piazza San Marco to start a very special full-day insightful immersion in the history and culture of Venice
  • We will discover the Dorsoduro District which contains a series of treasures such as the Basilica della Salute, where we will enter, Cà Venier dei Leoni, home of the Peggy Guggenheim Collection and the infamous and mysterious Ca Dario
  • Our walk will also feature an excusive visit to The Bucintoro Rowing Society 1882 which is based in the ancient salt warehouses of the Serenissima
  • A quick lunch break before reaching the Island of Murano this afternoon
  • Guided visit and chance to admire Murano’s world-renowned glass-art craftsmen
  • Return to Venice for an evening at leisure and dinner arranged by Guests


DAY NINE – Tuesday


Venice – Airport or Optional Activities


·       After breakfast, transfer to Venice Airport OR Optional Activities please to assist with:

o   Extension in Venice

o   Drive along the Coast to Abruzzo for an amazing MasterExperience in the region

o   Any other idea before arrivederci Italia!




Highlights & What's included

€3965  eur 

  • Guests: min 5 / max 7
  • Starting point: Bologna @ 11:00am on Day One (please contact us for arrangements)
  • Ending point: Venice Airport on Day Nine (please contact us for arrangements)
  • Fully escorted by our Tour Leader and Hosts
  • Accommodation 8 days / 7 nights: SINGLE/DOUBLE EN-SUITE ROOM ACCOMMODATION (NO single room  supplement!) in 4 Star & 4 Star Superior selected venues that deliver a true feeling for the town & area*
    • 3 nights in Bologna at selected Hotel I Commercianti
    • 1 night in Mantova or surrounding area at selected Hotel Ca’ Uberti
    • 2 night in Verona at selected Hotel Touring
    • 2 nights in Venice at selected Hotel Ai Cavalieri

*PLEASE NOTE: Hotels may be subject to change based on availability. Furthermore, alternative accommodations may be offered and quoted separately upon request. 

  • An exciting and unique journey of discovery through the very best of Northern Italy
  • Hands-on Cookery Classes at our exclusive venue in Bologna
  • Foodie Experiences:
    • Markets
    • Cheese Tastings
    • Wine Tastings & Winery visits
    • Balsamic Vingar - Parmigiano Reggiano & Parma Prosciutto Tastings
  • Accompanied guided visit  through the beauty of the Palladian Villas in the Veneto region
  • All restaurants and venues are highly selected and offer the most special ItaliaSpeciale Experiences!
  • 10 Meals included as per the program in selected venues with selected wines

Not included

  • Flights
  • Gratuities

A word on Tipping


At Italia Speciale and Abruzzo1 our mission is to assure only the best experiences possible around Abruzzo and Italy through our highly selected network of Partners and Hosts. All our Hosts strive to create the best experience and tips are welcome not only as a token of gratitude, but also as an important feedback on everyone’s performance and level of attention toward our Guests. Ideally your Host should collect €95 eur in cash per guest to cover all tips that deserve to be shared among all Partners.


Payment: Bank Transfer + bank charges | Credit Card in Italy | PayPal: +4.5%


Italia Speciale - Leonardo De Flaviis






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