The core of this program are the 7 nights spent in Piedmont to enjoy some of the most famous Italian wines. However this area can be combined either with a couple of days spent in the Aosta valley with breathtaking views of the Alps and very special wines or with few days spent on the coast near the Cinqueterre and the coastal Tuscany to enjoy sea views, sea food and Sassicaia, the most expensive of Italian wines.
Here the full 14 days program is described and you can pick the part that suites you better.
Day 1 – Arrival and transfer to the hotel
Day 1 – Arrival and transfer to the hotel (Possible private transfer from Malpensa airport.) along the way we will skirt Maggiore lake and its beautiful shores. Depending on your arrival time a stop for lunch can be arranged in Arona. Your accommodation is a wine producing farm, one of the most well known wineries of Valle d’Aosta. You will enjoy a typical, but gourmet food. http://www.lavrille.it/
Day 2 – Valtournanche and the Matterhorn
Depending on the weather you can have a full day in the superb mountain surroundings of Cervinia, the vally dominated by the Matterhorn, the second highest mountain in the Alps after the Mt Blanc, enjoying a lunch in one of the « malgas » (huts in the mountains where cheese is being made). If the forecasts are bad we can spend the day in Aosta, a town of Roman origins with ancient walls and a very interesting medieval cloister.
We will also visit the Fenis castle and have lunch in the adjoining restaurant.
Day 3 – Le « Langhe »
Day 3 – Transfer to the « Langhe » area in the heart of Piedmont most famous wine region. Your accommodation www.barac.it/ is a wine producing farm close to Alba, famous for Barolo wine and for white truffle. Along the way we will stop for a wine tasting near Roppolo in the Canavese wine area which produces a good sparking wine
Day 4 – Visit Alba
To reach Alba we will get a ride through an amazing landscape of vineyards with the Alps as background; winetasting & meeting with the producer are mandatory ( www.marchesibarolo.com )in the small town of Barolo. Alba is also known for its gourmet food so lunch will be a feast as well as supper back at your hotel.
Day 5 & 6 – Alba / Torre Bormida
On the way to Alta Langa the landscape get more rugged, old terraces and hazelnut trees take the place of vineyards, we are in a severe land of rough and gentle people who love great genuine food. Piedmont is a land famous for its outstanding cuisine. Mellow cheeses directly from the producers such as the goat cheese Robiola di Roccaverano, and delicate white truffles add a special flavor. Dolcetto and Barbera are the main wines of the area. All along our itinerary we will visit red roofed villages and walled medieval towns.
Day 7 – Torre Bormida/ Acqui Terme
Today we ride along the Valle Bormida an area rich of natural and human sights. After an easy start we reach Aqui Terme, the capital of Monferrato a lovely city and a thermal town where steaming hot water pours from the fountain on the main square. It has cobbled streets and plenty of interesting boutiques. You can have a cooking class at Paola home and enjoy what you cooked with her family.
Day 8 – Visiting the winemakers
Today we will enter the Gavi producing area and we will settle in a beautiful property : Villa Sparina
www.villasparinaresort.it/ an historical winery which beside Gavi produces Barbera and a great sparking wine. Maybe on the way the ladies will want to stop at the largest outlet center in Italy (Serravalle) where the most famous brands can be bought at a discount. A visit of the small medieval town of Gavi will allow a winetasting/lunch stop . A tour of our property vineyards and cellars and a welcome drink will conclude the day.
Day 9 – Wine and Castles
A tour of the surrounding castles (some of which have been turned into « Enoteche » where we will stop for a wine tasting/ lunch and a cooking class with a well known chef will be our task for today.
Day 10 – Heading for the sea
We will take the highway that cuts through the rugged landscape of the Appennino ligure to reach the Mediterranean sea just past Genova in the direction of Cinqueterre. We will spend the night in a wine producing farm not far from Cinqueterre. www.tenutalaghiaia.it
Along the way we will stop in St Margherita to have a first taste of the seaside. Tour of the property vineyards and wine tasting upon arrival.
Day 11 – Cinqueterre cruise
Today either you go by boat or you walk. Our van will take us either to the boat landing or to the train station In both cases we will tour this enchanting peninsula and its villages (Vernazza, Rio Maggiore, Monterosso etc..) . We will admire the terraced vineyards overlooking the sea and have a tasting of their refreshing wines.
Day 12 – Visiting Lucca
Today we head south along the coast and we enter Tuscany. One and a half hour drive will take us to Lucca one of the most interesting towns of Tuscany. We will visit its cathedral, its cobbled streets and squares; we will take a walk on its perfectly oval walls then we will reach a nearby winery for a wine tasting lunch www.sardigiustiniani.com. In the afternoon we will continue on our way south to reach Bolgheri on the coast where we spend the night.
Day 13 – Castello di Bolgheri and Populonia
A relaxing morning with a visit of Castello di Bolgheri where we are spending the night and where we have a wine tasting/lunch. In the afternoon we will take a trip in the past visiting Populonia, its Etruscan tombs and its Medieval castle back at our castle for a nice supper.
Day 14 Pisa
This is the end of the trip with a visit of the Sassicaia winery, one of the most famous wine producer of Italy (and the most expensive!) http://www.tenutasanguido.com
In the afternoon we will head for Pisa where we spend the last night before leaving from Pisa airport for your next destination.
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