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Culinary Vacations and Wine Tasting in Italy

Our exclusive vacation package is independent and a great way to see Italy without having a to-the-minute itinerary. We cover the most popular and interesting attractions you look for, and selected the finest hotels, day tours, and transportation for you. This way, you can check off all the must-sees and still have time to go back to your personal favorites, or explore each city as you wish. Not only does this make seeing Italy easy and fun, it's also a great value!


  • Wine tasting
  • Vineyard visit
  • Cooking class
  • Dinner in Trastevere
  • Visit Vatican museum and St. Peter's Basilica
  • 8 nights accommodation
  • City tours


7 days with instruction in English
Spoken languages: English
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Ambasciatori Palace - Rome

Superior first class traditional six-story hotel, built in 1903 with a columned, curved facade. Located on the fashionable Via Veneto, opposite the US Embassy and near Villa Borghese park and museum, the Ambasciatori has a Hard Rock Cafe downstairs! You will spend 3 nights here.

Le Tre Vaselle - Torgianao

The 17th century building of Le Tre Vaselle Resort rises within the medieval walls of Torgiano, a peaceful village between Perugia and Assisi, set in the heart of Umbria. Two nights will be spent here.

Grand Hotel Cavour - Florence

A centrally located in the historic heart of Florence right by the Duomo and Piazza della Signoria. You will stay in this beautiful hotel for 3 nights.


Day 1, Monday - Arrival in Rome

Benvenuti a Roma! Your Perillo representative will be at the airport to greet you.

There will be time to relax this afternoon before dinner with fine local wines at your hotel.

Meal plan: dinner

Day 2, Tuesday - Rome, Vatican museum, St. Peter's Basilica, and dinner in Trastevere

At 08:00 this morning you begin your before hours privileged entrance to Vatican museum and Sistine chapel. This is a semi-private experience, sometimes with a few other small groups as opposed to the usual thousands of visitors who arrive later in the morning.

What a way to experience the Sistine chapel! But exceptionally, your tour guide will be able to speak freely in the chapel to us, before the crowds enter when silenzio (silence) is strictly enforced.

After a coffee-break in the museum's cafeteria, your private tour continues to the Raphael rooms, the sala di chiaroscuro and the "secret" Nicolina chapel inside the walls of the Vatican. These are all areas off the normal tourist route.

Finally you go outside to the papal gardens. You will stroll through the private park of the pontiff to view the beautiful plantings and statues, and perhaps spot a pope, or two, as is only possible at this time.

Note: specific rooms and tours of the gardens can be cancelled at the last minute due to unforeseen activities of the Holy Father, in which case an alternative site will be offered within the Vatican.

Next, again avoiding all lines, you slip through a side door to find ourselves inside an awesome marble canyon, the seat of the holy Catholic Church: St. Peter's Basilica. Among the priceless wonders are Michelangelo's pieta, Bernini's fantastical bronze altar pillars and mosaics that you'll insist are painted with a brush. Instead they're made with millions of tiny chips that are undetectable, even close up.

Tonight you enjoy a fun dinner. You will get a taste of Italian cuisine in a family-style restaurant in the characteristic district of trastevere, one of the centers of Roman nightlife, including wines fit for the Roman gods. This lively area of tiny winding streets gives a taste of what one imagines Italy to be like, with cobble stone streets and music-filled trattorias on every corner.

Meal plan: breakfast, dinner

Day 3, Wednesday - Rome papal audience (when available) and Coliseum

This morning you head to the Vatican.

Experience the awe and wonder of the papal audience as cardinals preach in various languages reaching out to pilgrims and visitors from all over the world. Listen to the pope's weekly message as he enters the central stage.

This afternoon begins as you see the most important of the Seven Hills of Rome, the Capitoline, home of Jupiter, Marcello's theatre and the Jewish ghetto. You are awed by the view of the ancient imperial palaces atop the palatine hill overlooking the circus Maximus, where the rape of the Sabine's occurred. You're back on foot to view the arch of Titus and one of the best preserved roman structures, the arch of Constantine. You'll almost hear the roar of the lions as we enter the Coliseum and imagine the brutal entertainment of the Romans. Next you view the roman forum, Trajan's column and the astonishing "wedding cake", monument to Victor Emmanuel in piazza Venetian.

Tonight you have a chance to explore the wonderful restaurants in Rome on your own. Be sure to try some "fiori di zucca", a specialty in Rome, zucchini flowers, deep fried and filled with mozzarella and sometimes anchovies.

Meal plan: breakfast

Day 4, Thursday - Rome, Assisi, Torgiano and wine tasting

Today you venture off to Assisi, the birthplace of St. Francis, and namesake of our new pope. You visit the papal basilica of St. Francis of Assisi, as well as a visit to the crypt of Saint Francis, where his remains are kept.

Next you stop in the town of Santa Maria degli Angeli to see the Basilica where St. Francis worshipped. The Basilica is the seventh largest Christian church in the world. Inside is a small and simple church, the "Porziuncola," the place where St. Francis spent all his time praying and also where he founded the Franciscan order of the friars minor.

You proceed to Torgiano, where you will enjoy a wine tasting with fine Tuscany wines in your hotel before dinner.

Meal plan: breakfast, dinner

Day 5, Friday - Torgiano, cooking class and Perugia

Later this morning, you will attend a cooking class in the hotel. Prestigious chefs will teach you how to prepare an authentic Italian meal. Including time-tested techniques and special secrets your Italian grandmother might not even know.

After class, you will enjoy the fruits of your labor washed down with the great local wines of the region.

After lunch, you drive to Perugia, a lively medieval walled hill town with historic buildings, people-filled squares, and modern shops. You will be instantly charmed by this city, which is home of the Perugina chocolates. Be sure to bring some home!

Tonight, enjoy dinner on your own.

Meal plan: breakfast, lunch

Day 6, Saturday - Torgiano and Florence

Florence, the fountainhead of the renaissance, awaits your inspection. Your day of sightseeing includes the majestic Duomo built in 1296, Giotto's bell tower and the baptistery with its renowned "gates of paradise" doors.

You follow the medieval streets to the most striking square in Florence, Piazza della Signoria, home of Santa Croce church, Michelangelo's final resting place.

Breathtaking is the only word to describe one's first view of Michelangelo's David. Yes, it's quite large and detailed. But the real magic is in how Michelangelo transformed a lifeless rock into a man, full of pride, wary of his adversary, yet quietly confident. All with just a hammer and chisel.

Enjoy the remainder of the day on your own to explore this magical city.

Tonight you have dinner in your hotel.

Meal plan: breakfast, dinner

Day 7, Sunday - Florence and Pisa

This morning you travel to Pisa, known for its famous leaning tower. The Piazza del Duomo, also known as Piazza dei Miracoli (square of miracles) is recognized as one of the main centers for medieval art in the world. It is denominated by four great religious edifices: the cathedral, the leaning tower of Pisa (the campanile), the baptistery and the camposanto.

You'll enter the cathedral which is dedicated to St. Mary of the assumption. Inside the cathedral is a big candelabra near the altar. It's said that Galileo Galilei tested his laws of the pendulum using this candelabrum.

Next, you enter the baptistery, the largest in all of Italy, made entirely of marble. This building, which is dedicated to St. John the Baptist, took 211 years to construct. It is famous for its perfect acoustics.

Youur dinner tonight will be at a popular Florentine restaurant with great Tuscan wines.

Meal plan: breakfast, dinner

Day 8, Monday - Florence, Siena and wine tasting

Today you travel back in time to the middle ages: Siena, a beautiful medieval city. Its historical center has been declared a UNESCO world heritage site. We visit the famous Piazza del Campo, one of Europe's greatest medieval squares. And the site of Siena's famous horse race, the palio di Siena.

You visit Siena's town hall, palazzo pubblico (public palace). A beautiful gothic building which sits on Piazza del Campo by the bell tower, and the enchanting Duomo featuring the most ornate mosaic floor in all Italy. Siena's grand cathedral, which was built in the 1200's, is one of the finest examples of Italian gothic architecture.

Next, you'll visit a local winery where we'll enjoy a typical Tuscan lunch and wine tasting. Salute!

Tonight, enjoy dinner on your own. There are so many choices in this wonderful city. Be sure to try the "bistecca fiorentina," the classic Florentine T-bone steak.

Don't forget to exchange email addresses with your new friends and make plans for the future.

Meal plan: breakfast, lunch

Day 9, Tuesday - Departure

This morning you board your flight home.

Included excursions

  • Assisi town excursion
  • Florence city tour: the David, Duomo, bell tower, the baptistery, Piazza della Signoria
  • Perugia city sightseeing
  • Pisa city tour: the Piazza del Duomo, the cathedral, the leaning tower of Pisa, the baptistery and, the camposanto
  • Rome city sightseeing: Vatican museum, Sistine chapel, Colosseum, papal audience (when available), the Seven Hills of Rome, the Capitoline, the Jewish ghetto, Palatine hill, the arch of Titus, the arch of Constantine, Victor Emmanuel monument
  • Siena city tour: historical center, palazzo pubblico, Siena's grand cathedral
  • Torgiano town visit: wine tasting, vineyard tour, cooking class


This holiday will be held on what Goethe's classic Italian Journey, calls the "garden of Europe," Italy. The beauty of the landscape is just the beginning of what Italy has to offer the visitor. From the cafs that line its elegant piazzas to the scenic alps, magnificent seas and unrivaled architecture and historical sights, there are activities for every interest in Italy. And when you're done sightseeing, Italy's shopping is world class and its cuisine nothing short of legendary. You will enjoy overnight stays in Rome, Torgiano, and Florence and in the meantime visiting Assisi, Perugia, Pisa, Siena and Chianti. A remarkable journey through the Tuscan, Umbria and Veneto regions of Italy.


This package includes 15 meals: 8 breakfasts, 2 lunches and 5 dinners.


3 dinners and 5 lunches are not included. Nevertheless, tour guides will make suggestion on where and what to eat.

What's included

  • 1 cooking class with prestigious chefs
  • 8 nights accommodation in centrally-located, first-class and deluxe hotels
  • 15 meals: buffet breakfast daily, 5 dinners and 2 lunches. These include pasta or soup, choice of entrees, vegetable, dessert, coffee, wine, mineral water, beer or soft drink
  • Airport transfers
  • All excursions, city tours and visits mentioned in itinerary
  • Baggage handling. Never touch your belongings except at airports.
  • Deluxe transportation, state-of-the-art motorcoaches with extra legroom
  • Hotel taxes, service charges and all tips for hotel and restaurant personnel
  • Professional tour directors and licensed local guides
  • Travel wallet with baggage tags and travel documents included
  • Wine tasting experience, vineyard tour and cooking class
  • Wireless headsets to hear your guide clearly and distinctly in public places

What's not included

  • Airfares are not included in the price
  • If you wish to arrive earlier or extend your stay, airport transfers are not included

How to get there

Arrival by airplane

This package contemplates arrival to Rome, Leonardo da Vinci-Fiumicino Airport, (FCO) and return from Florence Airport, (FLR) or Pisa International Airport, (PSA). Round-trip airport transfers are provided at scheduled times if you arrive and depart the same day as the tour begins and ends, as specified in the airport transfers section above.

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