On your next trip to Italy go further and look for something completely different to
See and Savor Italy
Sights and experiences listed are from road trips with our Italian family and friends from 1999 - 2019. Some are off the tourist flow and require a comfort level of driving in Italy and basic Italian language skills .
Small bed & breakfast close to Modena and Parma with a stay that includes a visit to a balsamic acetaia.
A castle -fortress near Piacenza built by Charlemagne in the 8th century. The current keepers have transformed the the castle and the surrounding wood into a site of gastronomic festivals and Parco delle Fiabe (Park of the Fairies) entering into a fairy-tale like experience.
A piccolo Versailles in the the Euganean Hills south of Padua. One of the largest and best kept Baroque gardens in the world with a centuries-old boxwood labyrinth, the Hermit’s Grotto, Rabbit Island and the Monument to Time. In 1631 the Barbarigo family took refuge in this location to escape the Black Plague outbreak that raged in Venice and the rest of Europe.
Off the A1 Autostrada in Italy's Food Valley near Parma. Artisanal production of beer done with the same respect for the ingredients that you see in the production of the artisanal pastas of Emila-Romagna and legendary ragu’.
A charming bed and breakfast among the windswept hills south of Bologna with the most gracious host who makes her guests feel as if she has been waiting just for them.
The ducal residence of Francesco I d'Este in Sassuolo 16 km southwest of Modena. Also known as "the Delight" for its ornate architecture, pescheria, painted walls, ceilings, fountains and parkland.
The royal residence of the Gonzaga. A masterpiece of Italian artist Mantegna, the palace is an illusionist dream including the dome-like ceiling oculus in the Camera deli Sposi, peering down into the room.
The home of Ferrari and Scuderia Ferrari Formula One racing team.
Visit the ancient breed of the Red Cows of Reggiana, cattle native to Northern Italy, bred exclusively for a single purpose, the production of milk used in the making of Vacche Rosse Parmigiano Reggiano cheese. The finest, oldest and rarest of parmigiano cheeses.
Located 9km from Montalcino the solitary beauty and spiritual clarity of Sant'Antimo is the site of legends where around the year 800 the Emperor Charlemagne on his return to Rome made camp. His army was suffering from the plague and an angel advised him to collect a particular kind of grass and infuse it with Brunello wine (not bad medicine). The army was cured and Charlemagne built an abbey on the site dedicated to the martyred Saint Antimo.
The iconic chapel on the hill in Italy's stunning Val d'orcia is one of the most photographed in Italy. On the road between San Quirico d’Orcia and Pienza, it is one of the most beautiful and evocative places Tuscany, and a UNESCO World Heritage Site.
If total immersion into the Italian lifestyle is what you are looking for, brush up on your Italian, climb into your Fiat 500 rental and stop at the COOP for groceries for a farmhouse stay in San Casciano in Val di Pesa in the hills of Chianti.
Travel to Panzano for a sideboard sampling of Chianti salami with wild fennel pollen, lardo (aka Chianti butter) and a Tuscan porchetta that is so good it will bring tears to your eyes from artisanal butcher Dario Cecchini.
Sample some of Italy's most sought after cheese, pecorino in Pienza. A cheese-centric city that is one of Tuscany's Renaissance treasures.
Studio /atelier of artist Samuele Calosi Via della Sapienza, 17, Siena.
Cashmere goats at Azienda Agricola La Penisola in Radda in Chianti.
Orvieto is dramatically located on a butte of volcanic tufa. Lying between the borders of Lazio and Tuscany region Orvieto has been populated since Etruscan times. The Duomo of Orvieto is one of the most beautiful in Italy and should not be missed.
Perugia a major center of medieval art and Baci chocolate (kisses).
From modern to medieval, an Umbrian hill town with ancient walls and a view of the magnificent Umbrian countryside with the olive groves and notable vineyards producing Sagrantino wine.
One of the most significant spiritual centers in the world in a land where saints walked the hillsides and forests and lived lives that changed the world.
This Umbrian lake near the Tuscan border is the largest lake in central Italy where Hannibal made history and St. Frances made a Lenten fast. Well -known in the area for water sports and a popular destination for windsurfing, kitesurfing, sailing and water skiing.
Milan, Northern Italy, the Lake Region to the Veneto
Located in the artistic district of Milan, with unique shops and restaurants, the Brera is one of the most impressive museums in Milan with world renown art including “The Kiss” by Francesco Hayez.
Italy’s Lake Como is not only home to luxurious villas, romantic gardens and holiday resorts. Quaint historic villages dot the shoreline and its waters are inhabited by a multitude of fish, at least 25 species.Local ittiturismo (fishing related to a restaurant) brings the fresh catch of the day to the table.
A popular resort town on the southern edge of Lake Garda, and easy drive from Milan. An Italian Riviera for families with Rocca Scaligera, a Shrek inspired castle. The streets of Sirmione are lined with gelaterie with an endless of flavors.