4 Days Italian Cooking Vacation in Venice

  • Maria’s Cookery Course, San Martino di Venezze, Venice, Italy

4 Days Italian Cooking Vacation in Venice

  • Maria’s Cookery Course, San Martino di Venezze, Venice, Italy

Authentic Culinary Holiday in Venice, Italy

The cooking vacations at the Tenuta Castel Venezze will allow you to immerse yourself in the culture and lifestyle of Veneto and learn to cook authentic Italian dishes in an informal and friendly environment. The classes are small enough to accommodate cooks of all levels and are ideal for small groups of family and friends. It is also possible to bring along a non-participating partner, who can spend the day enjoying the surroundings, sightseeing or playing golf. Then, join the group at dinner time.


  • 3 hands-on cooking lessons
  • Learn how to prepare traditional Italian recipes
  • Visit Il Dominio di Bagnoli and taste the famous Friularo (red dry wine) in the cellars
  • Optional Salami Copparo farm visit to taste salamis of the area
  • 3 dinners and 3 lunches accompanied by Italian wines
  • 3 nights accommodation
  • Daily breakfast
  • 3 days with instruction
  • English
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Villa Castel Venezze is a medieval property set in the heart of a beautiful green park in the Venetian countryside. The accommodation, a prestigious villa owned by noblemen, was restored in the 16th century after the destruction of the ancient castle. It offers you an oasis of peace and tranquility, where you can enjoy the real Venetian life and food. There is a biological swimming pool, disinfected only by mineral salts, and a large parking place. Stay overnight in charming rooms with original ancient furniture, air conditioning, private en-suite bathroom, and satellite-TV. You will enjoy the great care to details that Maria Giustiniani, the owner, has given to her villa, the restaurant and, most important, to her guests. Under her watchful eyes, Maria’s Tenuta has been transformed into one of Veneto's finest accommodation, keeping its original, old style and charm.

Day 1 - Arrival, cooking lesson

  • Arrive at the villa.
  • At 10:30, you will have your first hands-on cooking lesson, followed by lunch.
  • Today, you are going to start making dishes using techniques and recipes handed down through generations of local women - typical appetizers, pasta, tagliatelle, tortellini, meat courses, side dishes, vegetables and cakes.
  • Lunch follows, including D.O.C. Italian wine.
  • In the afternoon, you can relax at the villa or visiting the beauties of the nearer surroundings with one by joining one of their tours.
  • Dinner at the villa.

Day 2 - Cooking lesson, wine tasting

  • Breakfast.
  • Hands-on cooking lesson during which, you will learn how to make and cook other traditional Italian recipes from appetizers to dessert.
  • Lunch at the villa, accompanied by Italian wine.
  • In the afternoon, you are suggested to make a visit with the guide to Il Dominio di Bagnoli (Padua), villa of the 14th century, where you'll taste the famous Friularo (red dry wine) in the cellars.
  • You will be back at about 18:00.
  • Dinner at the villa.

Day 3 - Cooking lesson, optional salami farm visit

  • Breakfast.
  • Another full-menu hands-on cooking lesson.
  • At the end of lesson, you will sit down and enjoy the meal together.
  • In the afternoon, you are suggested to make a visit to Salami Copparo farm, near Ferrara, to learn the production of the most famous and tasty salamis of the area.
  • At the end of the visit, enjoy a tasting with the farmers.
  • Dinner at the villa.

Day 4 - Departure

  • Breakfast.
  • Departure.

The hands-on Italian cooking lessons take place in the beautiful villa Castel Venezze, a 16th-century family property which is situated in the north side of Italy in the Veneto region, near Venice.

Nearby places:

  • Bologna - 1 hour
  • Treviso - 1 hour, 30 minutes
  • Venice - 1 hour
  • Verona - 1 hour
  • Boating nearby
  • Cooking classes
  • Shopping nearby
  • Swimming
  • Swimming pool
  • Wine tasting / tour
  • Air-conditioned rooms
  • Garden
  • Kitchen
  • Lounge
  • Restaurant nearby
  • Parking lot
  • Tour assistance

All meals are comprised in this package, including noble Italian and Venetian wines, and other drinks.

In the summer, the garden is cool and green, and you can relax in the swimming pool or enjoy a glass of good wine under the roof terrace. From May to September, you can also enjoy the ecological swimming pool. Additionally, during your stay in the Veneto area, you can take part in one of the tours organized by Maria's Cookery Course.

Cheese factory visit and tasting

Visit a farm in Anguillara, a small village near Tenuta Castel Veneze, and learn how to make the best traditional homemade cheeses. You will experience the different kinds of cheeses: exclusively cow's milk and sheep's milk, or a mixture between the two types of milk. They may vary depending of the recipe or style being made. Italian cheeses are different from region to region; they may be fresh, mature or semi-mature. The type of processing also varies. Some cheeses are made with acid coagulation of the milk, while others are produced with rennet coagulation. Of course, the most common case is that which provides for a coagulation mixed.

During this tour, you will learn the entire production process of different types of cheese. You can also visit the dairy and taste the best cheeses from their products. Some experts will lead you through the farm and explain the process as you move along. First class tasting sessions are prepared for you. The sessions are a combination of delicious meat products, homemade wine, and an unforgettable country atmosphere. The suggested schedule may be substituted at anytime based on group size and tasting room availability. The tour is available only on Monday and Friday.

Tour program:

  • 15:00 departure from Tenuta Castel Venezze
  • 15:30 arrival to Morandi, visit to the cheese factory with our guide, and the cells of cheese ripening
  • 16:30 cheese tasting
  • 17:30 go back to Tenuta Castel Venezze

Salami farm visit and tasting

Visit to a farm in Copparo, a small village near Ferrara, and learn how to make the best traditional homemade salami. You will experience the different kinds of salami: exclusively pork meat, or a mixture of pork and beef, but they can also be made with venison or other game meats, poultry, goose, lamb, and goat. They may vary depending of the recipe or style being made. Italian salami are different from region to region; they can be un-smoked or smoked, with or without garlic, each with their own formulas, curing, and maturation.

During this tour, you will be shown the production process of the best salami of the area, from fresh pork meat to the final product. Some experts will lead you through the farm and explain the process as you move along. First class tasting sessions, sessions that are a combination of delicious meat products, homemade wine, and an unforgettable country atmosphere, are prepared for you. The schedule may be substituted at anytime based on group size and tasting room availability. The tour is available only on Wednesdays.

Tour program:

  • 14:30 departure from Tenuta Castel Venezze
  • 15:30 arrival to Copparo, visit to the farm with a guide, and to the salami production area
  • 16.30 salami tasting
  • 17.30 go back to Tenuta Castel Venezze

Wine tasting at villa Widmann - Borletti in Bagnoli

During your stay in Tenuta Castel Venezze for your cookery course, you will have the chance to be part in the wine tasting tour program, which allows you to discover the Bagnoli DOC area. During this excursion, you will have the chance to see the old aristocratic villa Widmann Borletti and the cellars Il Dominio di Bagnoli that date back to 14th century. This winery produces the Friularo grape that is a native grape and has been used to produce a very special passito red wine that is dried till January in a special room upstairs the cellar after a late harvest. Along the way, your guide will share compelling wine-related information and introduce you to winemakers.

Tour program:

  • 15:00 departure from Tenuta Castel Venezze
  • 15:45 arrival at the winery Il Dominio di Bagnoli, visit the cellar with a guide
  • 16:30 wine tasting in the cellar
  • 17:30 go back to Tenuta Castel Venezze
  • 3 cooking lessons in the mornings
  • 3 nights accommodation at Villa Tenuta Castel Venezze
  • Italian and Venetian wines
  • Airfare
  • Local transportation
  • Suggested tours

Driving directions from Treviso

Within 5 minutes of the Treviso Airport (TSF), there is a motorway road that has an exit just 10 to 15 minutes from Maria's Cookery Course.

Arrival by airplane

Book your flight to arrive at Venice Marco Polo Airport (VCE). Transfer from and to the airport is included. Maria's Cookery Course will pick you up from the airport. You can also arrive at Bologna Guglielmo Marconi Airport (BLQ), Treviso Airport (TSF), Verona Villafranca Airport (VRN), yet there will be an additional cost required.


  • Review by a traveler from United States
    10 out of 10

    "Gianluca was so accommodating and helpful with all aspects of our experience. He translated as needed and even helped entertain the kids once their attention span had finished :) The villa is enchanting and the location is so quiet and beautiful. The menu is completely customized to your preferences and needs. Our kids loved making the biscottino and pizza. I loved learning how to make fresh pasta :) Sitting down to our own meal and enjoying conversation with Gianluca was fantastic! If you have a day to do something a little obscure from the beaten path of Venice, I highly recommend this!"

    TripAdvisor, edited

  • Review by a traveler from United States
    10 out of 10

    "Maria's Cookery Course was incredible! My boyfriend and I were staying in Venice on vacation and it was very easy to get to, just a quick train ride to Rovigo and then, Gianluca will come from the villa to pick you up and drive you to the class, really easy. The course itself was fun, educational, and most importantly, delicious! The staff at the villa was extremely friendly and the villa itself was beautiful. All of their fresh produce comes from their own farm. I would go back there in a heartbeat and would recommend to all!"

    TripAdvisor website, edited

  • Review by a traveler from United States
    10 out of 10

    "My 12 year-old daughter loves to cook, so my husband and I wanted to plan an authentic Italian cooking experience for her during our trip to Italy. We couldn't have chosen a better place. The cooking course was on our first full day in Italy, and was a fantastic way to begin our trip. Gianluca is a great host, and the kitchen staff is fantastic. A true, hands-on cooking experience. My husband and I also participated in the cooking, and I'm still amazed at the number of different dishes we prepared in just a few hours - pizza, ravioli, tortellini, two vegetable dishes (zucchini and red peppers with tomato and anchovy), eggplant parmesan, and chicken wraps. I had mentioned to Gianluca that my daughter's birthday was a month away, so he arranged to have her favorite chocolate cake for dessert. He even let her take the leftover cake with us! To top it off, he emailed me all the recipes so we can make all the dishes at home. Gianluca also gave us a tour of the estate and explained its history. We were lucky enough to have him join us for a lunch of all the food we prepared. We rented a car for the day and drove to the estate from Venice, but he's also able to arrange transportation. Gianluca was flexible and easy to work with in the time leading up to our cooking course. If you're interested in an authentic Italian cooking experience in a great location with wonderful hosts, look no further!"

    TripAdvisor website, edited

  • Review by a traveler from United States
    8 out of 10

    "What a dream to view this property, cooking authentic was a dream come true! Diego was fantastic in coordinating and communication assistance! Our meal together when we were done was like a celebration. Highly recommend the experience!"

    TripAdvisor website, edited

  • Review by a traveler
    10 out of 10

    "We took the train and taxi through the countryside to this beautiful and quiet setting - a nice contrast to the busy tourist activities in Venice the day before. Pleasant greetings and introductions led us into the cooking lessons where we prepared pizza, ravioli, peppers and other side dishes - all vegetarian as per our request. Patiently they guided us (their less accomplished students) through the process, with lots of encouragement. We then sat down to a delicious feast of what we'd helped prepare along with local wine and prosecco. What a fantastic meal!"

    TripAdvisor website, edited

  • Review by Michelle H from South Africa
    10 out of 10

    "My husband and I travel every year overseas and have always dreamed of a holiday in Italy where we could attend a cooking course. My husband found Maria's cooking course at Tenuta Castel Venezze on TripAdvisor. It is 1-hour car drive from Venice - we used a navigational system to find our way around - it worked brilliantly. After a week's cruise, we hired a car at Marco Polo airport (Venice) and drove to Tenuta Castel Venezze in the small town of San Martino di Venezze. We were so thrilled when we drove down the tree-lined avenue leading to the villa. Riots of color in the form of red, pink and yellow roses greeted us and this unique and charming villa that was to be our home for the next 4 days. Diego is the star of the villa, he manages the running of the villa, doing admin, dealing with guests and staff and he also translates during the cooking courses. He is always so helpful and happy with an amazing laugh. Thanks to Annalise and Suzanna, who were wonderful, so patient and friendly and for teaching us so many Italian dish from fresh pasta, pizza, vegetable dishes and puddings. All the fresh produce comes from their own vegetable garden and orchard on the property. We then sat down and ate all the delicious dishes that we had prepared with stunning wine and of course Italian Prosecco. Our thanks to Andre, Diego, Annalise and Suzanna for making our stay so memorable - will always think of our time with you when we are making our Italian dishes."

    TripAdvisor website, edited

  • Review by Tammy Dolling from United Kingdom
    10 out of 10

    "My husband and son recently had a cooking class with Maria and her team and thoroughly enjoyed every minute. They learned how to make a variety of delicious dishes which were quick and simple. Riccardo was kind enough to email us the recipes and I am looking forward to them making them at home. Its a wonderful way to experience true Italian cooking!"

    Maria's Cookery Course website, edited

  • Review by Emma Seymour from UAE
    10 out of 10

    "Maria's cookery school was a fantastic experience. After being collected from Venice we spent the morning cooking with the countess, and her band of fab Italian ladies. My husband's pasta making was 'perfecto' apparently! We learnt how to cook aubergine parmigiana, tiramisu, chicken with sage, spinach, and ricotta ravioli. It was so much fun! After lunch we washed down with some Italian wines. We also enjoyed a cheese and wine tasting session with the resident sommelier and went back to Venice, thoroughly satiated and proud of our cooking skills! The grounds of the castilla are amazing and I would heartily recommend this experience!"

    Maria's Cookery Course website, edited

  • Review by Bridget Thomas from United Kingdom
    10 out of 10

    "My daughter and I took a cookery course last week with Maria and her team. We learnt how to make delicious pizza, pasta and profiteroles, also a main course and side dishes. Then we sat down and ate what we had cooked. We both really enjoyed it and Maria has her own hens and much of the produce is grown at the premises. We had a wander round the grounds which contains a swimming pool and a look round the rooms. It would be a wonderful place to stay for a few days. We were staying in Venice, so we took the train to Rovigo and we were collected by Riccardo at the station. Riccardo also emailed us the recipes and we will be trying them out at home."

    Maria's Cookery Course website, edited

  • Review by a traveler from Brisbane
    10 out of 10

    "I was in Venice for 5 nights accompanying my 88 year old mother on a really special trip of very memorable experiences. We loved our time in Venice it was so rich with wonderful moments, beautiful scenery and a history that could constantly reappear before our eyes with every step.I definitely have a huge desire to come back to Venice one day one could easily fill 3-4 weeks in this beautiful place and that would allow us to partake in one of Maria's longer live in cooking schools. We had pre-planned a one day visit to Maria's cooking school as we really wanted the opportunity to learn some truly Italian cooking.Our emails to organize this from Australia - were all done so efficiently, I always received prompt reply and had a great feeling of excitement and trust for all that we could expect on our day trip from Venice. The cooking school is part of the beautiful grounds of Maria's Tenuta Castel Venzze, in Rovigo, a little over an hour outside of Venice.My mother's mobility is limited (she uses a walker) but we were determined not to let this get in the way, we were met at our hotel by Paolo and managed a short walk carefully navigated over the easiest bridge to the waterbus and then Paolo took us by Car to our destination. This trip could easily be managed by train however with my mother's limited mobility this was by far the best solution.Our day started with some morning tea outside - it was a beautiful day and it is the sort of place that you just feel instantly at home in and relaxed! We then went straight in to our cooking, Ricardo interpreted for us and Mauela and Annalaisa were our teachers for the day.They are so patient and very good at making sure you really do take part with hands on experiences, language is no barrier in fact it makes you pay more attention and you really do remember the whole experience. We made the most delicious Pizza Margherita, Ravioli Alla Zucca, Gnocchi Di Patate, Melanzane Alla Parmigiana, Zucchini Ripieni and the very best Tiramisu that I have ever tasted!We finished all this and then sat down to enjoy our creations with some beautiful local wines carefully selected to match our food. I might also mention here that the food cooked is very specialized to the local area and they only use produce that is local, fresh and in season, so you really do come away feeling you have had an authentic Italian encounter.After our meal we enjoyed some special time walking around the grounds and sitting by the pool. We met some of the guests that were staying there and they also seemed very relaxed and at home in their surrounds. Paolo returned at 16:00 to take us back to Venice.We were sad to go but so very pleased we had made this choice to include Maria's Cooking School in our itinerary, I would not hesitate to recommend it or come back to visit again. Thank you and our special thoughts to Maria, Ricardo, Paolo, Mauela and Annalaisa - you were so much a part of this very special moment during our trip."

    TripAdvisor, edited

  • Review by a traveler from Austria
    10 out of 10

    "If you are looking for a cookery class with true Veneto cusine in a paradise alike settings, this is the right place to be! Two extremely charming Italian female chefs will pass on their knowlege and tricks so that you can learn and be a great chef yourself in a short time. Riccardo, the manager of the place, is extremly helpful for translation and logistics questions so that your stay will not only be a experience but a treat! The domestic herbal garden next to the kirchen provides great ingredients for cooking, even the flour they use is from an organic local supplier within the same village ! What a privelige ! The course is well-planned, demonstration for the dishes is clear and logical, and most importantly, all ingredients are simple to organize so that you can immediatlely practise at home . Stay for minimum 3 days if not 5, you will not regret ! It is better than reading 1 million cook books !"

    TripAdvisor, edited

  • Review by a traveler from United States
    10 out of 10

    "We were picked up at Piazzale Roma for one day cooking class for four of us. The most enjoyable part for us is making our own pizza, gnocchi, eggplant lasagna, and tiramisu, then eating our meal with regional wines of our choice. We were forewarned that our Monday reservation had 19 people; it really didn't matter since some stayed very involved, others lost interest after a while.About 8 of us stayed with most of the prep. The director, Riccardo is so gracious. We relaxed as much as we desired in a beautiful setting until Riccardo called for our ride back to Venice (ride included in fee). Fun day outside of Venice, for novice or experience cooks."

    TripAdvisor website, edited

  • Review by Kelly
    10 out of 10

    "We were a group of 10 celebrating various life milestones. Everything was perfect! From the communication prior to booking with Maria and Riccardo, the awaiting airport pickup, accomodations, excursions, wine tastings, the pool and lastly but certainly not the least - the food...it is unbelievable!We are all still savoring our experience from this beautiful historic villa. We chose the full board, which included breakfast and dinner daily. We all participated in Maria's cooking class, this was certainly the most auhentic Italian cooking experience...we had so much fun and came home with new recipes and many incredible memories. It was the trip of a lifetime and we are already looking at plans to return!"

    Trip Advisor website, edited

Veneto, Italy

Maria's Cookery Course is an italian cooking school near Venice. You can do a charming and funny course to learn a bit of Italian culture.

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4 days / 3 nights

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