Chapter upon Chapter of Fascinating History...
Whether you’re interested in Roman ruins suspended in time, soaring medieval Cathedrals or lavish Renaissance villas, a tour of Italy will more than satisfy any history buff. Our passionate and knowledgeable group leaders will help to bring history alive as they explain the significance of the sites you marvel over.
Walk the eerie streets of Pompeii, frozen by the might of Mount Vesuvius in the first century AD in Enchanting Southern Italy, or explore the incredible Valley of the Temples in Sicily’s ancient Greek town of Agrigento. Two of our Italy tours tilt their heads in wonder at the gravity-defying Leaning Tower of Pisa, while the magnificent Cathedrals of Turin, Milan, Siena, Amalfi and Taormina pepper the itineraries of our Italy holidays.
Sounds exhausting? Don’t worry, all of our holidays are conducted at a leisurely pace, allowing you to soak up the atmosphere and immerse yourself in the local culture. We allocate plenty of free time for you throughout our Italy tours, so that you can explore the locations at your own pace or simply relax with a glass of wine and enjoy the Italian sunshine.
... And a Strong Cultural Identity that Survives Today
Each tour of Italy, from the Lakes and Mountains of Italy and Switzerland in the north to the Splendours of Sicily in the Mediterranean Sea, gives a fascinating insight into the region’s specific cultural heritage. Our holidays give you hands-on experience of these characteristically Italian traditions, whether hunting for the finest truffles with specially-trained dogs in Alba, or admiring the hand-painted, brightly-coloured ceramics made by the master craftspeople of Vietri sul Mare.
Our Italy tours also give you eye-opening insights into Italian contributions to world-wide musical and popular culture. For example, in Lucca, on our Italian Indulgence holiday, we recommend that you watch a rendition of the Puccini Opera in the Church of San Giovanni; every evening at 8 o’clock the city honours one of its most famous sons with a Puccini performance. A popular part of our Splendours of Sicily itinerary is the visit to Corleone, infamous seat of the Corleonesi mafia clan and immortalised as the birthplace of several characters in The Godfather. We hear about the effect of the mafia on Sicily through the words of a knowledgeable local.
Italian Cooking Just Like Mamma Makes ...
It wouldn’t be a trip to Italy without a considerable emphasis on the country’s most outstanding international contribution: its cuisine. The Back-Roads difference is that you won’t just eat great Italian food on our Italy tours – you will learn how to produce, prepare and cook it too.
Each Back-Roads tour of Italy involves a number of culinary experiences; for example, our Italian Indulgence itinerary has a day dedicated to home cooking, when you will gather together the vegetables, fruits and fresh pasta made by your own hand to cook up a delicious rustic Tuscan lunch. However, real gastronomists should book a place on our Slow Food Tour of Puglia, for which Italy’s wholesome cuisine is the centrepiece.
Of course, you couldn’t enjoy all of that food without a drink with which to wash it down. A number of our Italy tours involve visits to wineries and distilleries. If your preferred tipple is vermouth, Marsala or limoncello, tasty treats await you on your journey.
... In Authentic Accommodation for Sweet Italian Dreams
At Back-Roads, we think that a tour of Italy has to do this beautiful country justice; only the finest hand-picked rustic villas, country estates and boutique hotels will do for our customers. It’s important to us that your accommodation reflects the history and culture of the place you are visiting.
On our Tuscan Treats itinerary you will stay for two nights in the elegant ‘Tenuta di Ricavo’, a country house that nestles in a medieval hamlet within a 445-acre nature reserve. The villa’s chef will invite you into his kitchen and impart his culinary wisdom, while together you prepare a delicious Tuscan meal for the whole group to enjoy. If you’re on our Enchanting Southern Italy tour, you are in for a treat when you stay at ‘Tenuta Seliano’, an authentic agritourismo complete with a buffalo and mozzarella-making farm.
For a tour of Italy gives you a true taste – and swig – of authentic Italian history, culture and cuisine, choose Back-Roads Touring.