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Autumn Culinary Vacations Italy

This holiday will be your opportunity to discover Italy from a whole new perspective, through food and culture. Start the autumn season immersed in the authentic and unique Italian cuisine during exquisite days in Basilicata town. Join chefs Marisa and Pietro for hands-on workshops and learn how to make a traditional Italian pasta and study its styles and techniques. Relax and pick olives while you learn how olive oil is produced. Live a local experience and enjoy Italy's taste for culture and food.

Meet the instructors

Greg, Marisa, Pietro, & 1 More…
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  • Traditional pasta making class
  • Olive picking and oil production activity
  • Tour to Castelmezzano and Pietrapertosa towns
  • Tour of Matera and local villages
  • 6 nights accommodation
  • 3 daily local meals


6 days with instruction in English
Spoken languages: English
The maximum participants in the group is 20
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During this holiday, you may choose to stay either in a double, a triple or a quadruple room at the farmhouse. All guests will stay in a typical Lucana farmhouse room complete with a double bed, wardrobe, Wi-Fi connection, air-conditioning, fan, heating, refrigerator, towels, bedding, and hand soap.

Each room has an en-suite bathroom complete with a shower cubicle and all amenities including a hair dryer. They all gives access to a large terrace where you can enjoy spectacular views of the lake and the surrounding area. This communal terrace is inspired by the terraces of the Sassi where the people of Matera would meet together and talk.


Day 1

Upon arrival, you will be picked up at the airport by La Lucana and they will take you to the farmhouse near Matera where you will enjoy a welcome dinner and be introduced to La Lucana culture.

Day 2

You will start the day with a typical Lucana breakfast including fresh fruits and juices, coffee, home-made jams and marmalades, fresh Materan bread and typical sweet breakfast cakes. Around 10:00, they will take you to Matera for a guided tour of the UNESCO world heritage site, The Sassi.

The tour will be delivered by an English speaking local expert and you will discover all of the treasures of this ancient stone city. There will also be free time to explore the many shops, galleries and other places of interest before they break for their siesta.

During the afternoon, you will have free time to relax, take a stroll, ride a bike through the woods or even enjoy the wildlife. In the evening, you will dine together in typical Lucana fashion style.

Day 3

After a delicious breakfast, you will enjoy a relaxing morning with free time. In the afternoon, Marisa and Pietro will show you how to make fresh pasta in a hands-on workshop. You'll learn all about the techniques and different types of pasta and in the evening you'll get to see how it's cooked in Basilicata. For dinner, you'll get to eat the fresh pasta that you have made with your own hands.

Day 4

This day you will start with a fresh made breakfast and around 10:00, you will take a minibus through the Dolomite mountains of Basilicata. There you will visit two stunning little mountain towns, Castelmezzano and Pietrapertosa, situated right in the heart of the Dolomites.

These ancient towns have a variety of beautiful churches and chapels and are surrounded by lush vegetation and Sivlia and Greg will show you around and tell you all about some of its interesting Ancient Greek origins. After, you will have lunch and you will return back to the farm to relax. In the evening, you will get to enjoy another one of Marisa's fantastic dinners.

Day 5

After breakfast, it's time for you to go olive picking around the farm. You will spend some time learning how to pick the olives and how the groves are maintained. Later in the morning, your hosts will take you to the local olive press where you can see how olive oil is produced and even take a bottle back with you.

After a light lunch, you're once again free to enjoy the farmhouse and the surrounding area. Dinner will be served in the evening with food, wine and a great laughter moment.

Day 6

Following breakfast, you will take a trip around some of local towns in Basilicata. First, you will visit Pisticci, known for being the production site for Amaro Lucano, one of the most famous liqeurs in all of Italy. You will explore the historic center of the town which is full of winding streets and beautiful buildings. Pisticci is also surrounded by yet more impressive scenery, including the Calanchi which are characteristic clay mountains famous in Basilicata.

​The second town to visit this morning will be the abbey-town of Montescaglioso. This larger town is famous for its beautiful abbey and historically it was the center of a county in the Norman Kingdom of Sicily. Its beautiful streets are well-kept and less known amongst tourists to Basilicata.

After lunch in Montescaglioso, you will continue on to the small castle-town of Miglionico, which you can actually see from the farm. This small medieval town is famous for its beautiful castle, Castello del Malconsiglio and has an intriguing history. ​After some more relaxation at the farm, La Lucana will conclude with a farewell pizza party where you will make pizzas and celebrate the fantastic week you've had in Basilicata. Also, in true Lucana style, they will invite local musicians to the farm who will introduce you to some of the fascinating music and instruments that have been played there for generations.

Day 7

During this day, you will have to check out and finally depart.

Included excursions

  • Guided tour of Matera
  • Local towns of Pisticci, Montescaglioso and Miglionico visit
  • Trip to Castelmezzano and Pietrapertosa
  • Trip to the local olive press


Greg Foster
Greg is from Manchester, England. He is one of the architects of La Lucana and he is passionate about creating a unique experience that brings travelers close to the Lucana way of life. The first time he came to Matera he completely fell in love with the city and its people. The second time he came, he fell in love with Silvia, Marisa's daughter.
Marisa and Franco opened L'Assiolo 13 years ago. They both shared a passion for moving into the countryside and opening up their very own agriturismo and bed and breakfast. Marisa has a passion for Lucana cuisine, is a well-known chef in these parts and is excited to share her incredible food with you.
Pietro, Franco and Marisa's son, is also an accomplished chef who shares his Mum's passion for Lucana food and home grown produce. Like Silvia, he's spent many years helping his parents make L'Assiolo what it is today and he's excited to welcome even more people to their stunning place in the years to come.
Silvia is one of the architects of La Lucana and she is passionate about creating a unique experience that brings travelers close to the Lucana way of life. Silvia has a degree in English language and interpreting as well as many years of experience in working alongside her parents at L'Assiolo.


This holiday will take place at La Lucana farmhouse, in Basilicata, Italy. The L'Assiolo farm is situated 10 kilometers from Matera town, one of the most treasured jewels of Basilicata, in a nature reserve that is full of wildlife and greenery.

The farm is right next to the San Giuliano Lake and is surrounded by olive groves, orchards, and stunning landscapes in an untouched part of Southern Italy. This region grows a range of fruits and trees including, olives, aubergines or eggplants, peaches, oranges, and watermelons.

Nearby places

  • Matera town, 10 kilometers



  • Cooking classes
  • Mountain biking nearby
  • Outdoor swimming pool
  • Shopping nearby
  • Swimming nearby


  • Air-conditioned rooms
  • Garden
  • Lake
  • Restaurant nearby
  • Terrace


  • Free bicycle
  • Free Wi-Fi
  • Hair dryer
  • Tour assistance


This holiday includes three organic daily meals. You will enjoy a daily breakfast, lunch, dinner, and beverages typical from La Lucana and the region specialities. All meals are home cooked and sourced from the farm or locally.

On every evening at La Lucana, you will get to eat some of the finest food in all of Italy and taste the fresh produce from the farm and other products from local businesses. Marisa and her team will cook up some fantastic pastas, meat dishes, and desserts that will leave you amazed.

The following meals are included:

  • Breakfast
  • Lunch
  • Dinner

The following dietary requirement(s) are served and/or catered for:

  • Organic
  • Regular (typically includes meat and fish)
If you have special dietary requirements it's a good idea to communicate it to the organiser when making a reservation

Things to do (optional)

During your free time, you can take a stroll through the woods, borrow one of La Lucana's bikes or enjoy a spot of birdwatching at the farmhouse. After a morning of exploring Matera or an afternoon of cooking with Marisa, you can cool off in the pool or simply lay back and enjoy the sunshine.

What's included

  • 1 cultural tour to Sassi world heritage site
  • 1 fresh pasta making class
  • 1 tour to a local olive press
  • 1 tour to Castelmezzano and Pietrapertosa towns
  • 1 visit to Pisticci, Montescaglioso, and Miglionico local towns
  • 3 daily organic meals plus drinks
  • 6 nights accommodation
  • Airport transportation
  • English speaking tuition and guided tours
  • Welcome and farewell dinner

What's not included

  • Additional activities
  • Airfare

How to get there

Arrival by plane

Please book your flight to arrive at Bari International Airport Karol Wojtyla (BRI). Transfer from and to the airport is included. La Lucana will pick you up from the airport.

Cancellation Policy

  • The deposit is fully refundable if the booking is cancelled up to 2 days before the arrival date.
  • The rest of the payment should be paid on arrival.
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