Staying in a lovingly restored 18th Century noble’s palace in the Roman Empire-era mountaintop town of Atina, mentioned in Virgil’s Aeneid and believed to have been originally settled by the ancient pagan god Saturn according to local legend. Atina is now home to some of the region’s best Ciociarian restaurants and is close to nearby vineyards. Our focus is on local and fine-dining food and wine experiences and cultural adventures during our 8 days / 7 nights Wild Heart of Italy experience. We will be exploring the Ciociaria region’s deep Etruscan-era roots through its food, wine and music and tracing the footsteps of the ancient Italic tribes and the Romans who conquered them through local historical sites.
Our accommodation is built on top of the remains of an ancient Samnite tribe fortress, pre-dating the Romans – and the surrounding hills of the Comino Valley are thought to have been the location of the legendary Samnite city of Cominium which was totally destroyed by the Roman army in the Samnite Wars circa 300 BC.
Our September cultural adventure for foodie aficionados features a private and guided tour of Il Giardino di Ninfa – renowned as one of Europe’s most beautiful, the Gardens of Ninfa were beautifully restored in the 20th Century to preserve the ruins of the medieval village of Ninfa. It also includes visits to organic and biodynamic vineyards and farms in the region; a Sunday long lunch in a private room at the 19th Century villa Casa Lawrence in Picinisco; a tour of the 18th Century palace of the Bourbon Kings, Reggia di Caserta and visit to a nearby silk-weaving village; designer outlet shopping experience; a day trip to Agnone to visit a bell-making foundry where the bells of the Vatican are made; a day trip to Gaeta on the Ulysses Riviera for a seafood lunch on a boat and dive into ancient Roman history; and a fine-dining 8 course degustation farewell dinner.
Each morning or evening before we set off on our adventures we will be providing you with an introduction to each the site we will be visiting. This tour is suitable for people of all ages who are relatively active and healthy – there will be walking in countryside and forests and through cobbled stone villages.
AUD$5,497* per person based on double occupancy (couple/friends**). Fabulous Singles welcome for an additional $1,000 to secure own room.
Final balance payment due March 2019. Payment Plans available on request.
Minimum of 6 guests for this tour. Maximum 12 guests.
* Package cost does not include flights, travel insurance, medical insurance, relevant visas, or any additional personal expenses. Package will be charged in Euro from 2020 **It is possible to request a room with two single beds for friends to share, however please note these rooms are limited and will be allocated on request.
Tour commences at 11am on Sunday 8 September with pick-up from designated tour hotel. Guests not staying at the hotel are required to make their own way there. Tour completes at 11am on Sunday 15 September with return transfer to Rome to designated tour hotel. Onward transfers to hotels or airport are responsibility of guests. We recommend you plan to arrive in Rome at least one day prior to the tour commencing and arrange onward transfers for one day after the tour.
We can assist with recommendations for extending your food and wine travels throughout regional Italy on request.
There is an AUD$500 reservation fee per person to secure your place. This fee is non-refundable but completely transferable to an alternative tour date. For more information on our bookings and payments procedure, including details on our Cancellations & Refunds policies please visit our Booking Information page.
Download our ‘There’s something you need to know about Ciociaria’ Fact Sheet before booking to gain an understanding of visiting a region not set-up for mass tourism. Having travel insurance is a condition of joining our hosted travel experiences. We like
Reserve your place by 31 December 2018 and you won’t need to pay anything further until March 2019.
Our small, sustainable group tours to Ciociaria are aimed at preserving the region’s charm and authenticity for visitors. We hold our tours during low seasons, so by joining us you are also supporting the well-being of the local Ciociarian communities we visit. Grazie mille on behalf of our Ciociarian friends.
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Described as ‘the world’s most romantic garden’, our private tour of the Gardens of Ninfa (pictured above) will definitely have you swooning. The ancient settlement of Ninfa is preserved within the gardens, and this was a place of pilgrimage since Roman times to a temple in the grounds dedicated to Nymphs. The gardens now surround the ruins of the medieval village of Ninfa, which was destroyed in the 1200s during a series of battles between noble families to control the Caetani Castle and for the papacy. We contribute a donation to the Caetani Foundation on behalf of our guests for this unique access and experience.
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