Taste of Classic Italy Vacation


Take a moveable feast through Rome, Tuscany and Venice. For the traveler that wants to experience a gourmet version of the “Classic Tour” of Italy, this is the trip for you. Experience and enjoy the main sights and the best of the food and wine in each place: Rome, Florence & the Tuscany countryside and Venice.

On this 11-day/10-night all-inclusive vacation, you’ll spend four nights in the historic center of Rome, another four nights in Florence, and two nights in Venice. All accommodations will be in luxury boutique hotels.




2017 Dates:

April 2 – 12, 2017 (FULL)

June 4 – 14, 2017

July 2 – 12, 2017

October 15 – 25, 2017

Vacation Price:

$4,695 (based on double occupancy)
**Single Occupancy Supplement charge: $775 per person

Maximum Group Size: 12 people



  • 10 nights accommodations in luxury boutique hotels (4 nights in Rome/4 nights in Florence/2 nights in Venice)
  • Airport transfer from the Rome airport to your hotel in Rome at the beginning of the vacation
  • Airport transfer from your hotel in Venice to the Venice airport at the end of the vacation
  • Local guides and local culinary experts with us at each location
  • All meals: all breakfasts, lunches and dinners, wine included with lunch and dinner
  • Transportation to all excursions and activities
  • Two full-meal hands-on cooking classes: one each in Rome and Tuscany
  • Food of Rome walking tour and tastings that end with a 20+ flavors gelato tasting
  • Food walking tour and tastings in Florence
  • Cicchetti food walking tour and wine tasting in Venice
  • Tuscany Winery visit with lunch
  • Guided visit to Tivoli and the Villa d’Este with a gourmet picnic lunch in the Castelli Romani
  • Private guided tour of the Vatican museums
  • Private walking tour of historic Rome; seeing the Spanish Steps, Trevi Fountain, Pantheon and Piazza Navona
  • Private driving tour of Rome visiting the Coliseum, Roman Forum, Janiculum Hill and more
  • Private guided walking tours of Florence, visiting the Uffizi Gallery, Duomo and Accademia to see the statue of David
  • Private guided walking tour of Siena
  • Private Guided Boat tour of Venice
  • Private guided walking tour of the Rialto Market, St. Mark’s Square and Cathedral and the Doge’s Palace
  • The right amount of free time in Rome, Florence, and Venice for you to shop/take photos/people watch/food shop, etc. all at your own leisure
  • Help and travel-planning  assistance with flights to/from Italy and travel within Italy before and after the vacation
  • Food Lover’s Classic Italy Recipe booklet and apron
  • Alumni Reward: Receive $250 credit towards your next Food Lover’s Odyssey Vacation

**Airfare, transportation to Rome before the vacation and from Venice after the vacation, travel insurance and expenses of a personal nature (souvenirs and other personal items) are not included in the vacation package price.


You’ll enjoy a two cooking classes, in Rome and Tuscany, and three food walking tours, one each in Rome, Florence and Venice. Experience, both  by tasting and cooking, how varied the food is in each region and how that region’s food has played an important part in its history and culture. In Rome, we’ll enjoy both a pasta-making class and a food walking tour through one of Rome’s major food districts that will include a visit to the market. In Tuscany, we’ll explore the food of Florence during our walking tour and learn about typical Tuscan cuisine during our cooking class in the Chianti countryside. In Venice, a fun and fabulous local food expert will take us on a cicchetti and wine tasting tour. We’ll take a tour of the Rialto Market and then make typical Venetian dishes during our cooking class.

In addition to all the delicious food and cooking classes, we’ll see the classic sights of each region and some off-the-tourist track ones, too. In Rome, explore the Roman Forum, Coloseum, Palantine Hill, Vatican Museums, St. Peter’s Basilica and breathtaking hilltop views during our driving tour. In Florence, learn about its history through its art during our private guided walking tour of the Uffizi and the Accademia. See the Duomo and Ponte Vecchio and see the city from the Piazzale Michaelangelo. Enjoy the Chianti wine country and its wine. Enjoy a winery visit with a wine-paired lunch in Chianti. See Siena on an exclusive private guided walking tour. Experience the beauty of Venice on a private boat tour through its glimmering canals. Throughout your vacation, you’ll be surrounded by locals. We’ll dine at restaurants favored by food-loving locals. Local guides and food experts will be with us to share their cities and the culture with us.

Vatican City


Day 1: Benvenuti a Roma (Welcome to Rome)
Arrival at the Rome Fiumicino Airport with a private transfer to your hotel
Late afternoon Welcome and Orientation Walk through the historic center of Rome with gelato stop – We’ll see the Spanish Steps, Trevi Fountain, Pantheon, and Piazza Navona
Welcome dinner at a favorite Roman Trattoria

Day 2: Roman Food Tour – Vatican City – Special Home-Cooked Roman Dinner
After breakfast at the hotel, we’ll spend the morning on a food and market tour in the Testaccio area of Rome, with lunch.
In the afternoon we’ll enter Vatican City. You’ll have a private tour of St. Peter’s Basilica, the Vatican museums and Sistine Chapel.
Tonight dinner is a special typical Roman dinner in a Roman home.

Day 3: “Off the Beaten Path” tour of Rome and a Roman Cooking Class
After breakfast at the hotel, we’ll take a driving tour to some of the unique spots in Rome. Our day will include visits with a local guide to the Coliseum, Roman Forum, Baths of Caracalla, Roman Aqueduct. During the day, we’ll see some breathtaking views of Rome from Aventine and Janiculum Hill.
Lunch will be a picnic with a view.
You’ll have the afternoon free to relax, shop or explore on your own before our evening pasta-making class; dinner will be what we cook.

Day 4: Tivoli and a Picnic in the Roman countryside
After breakfast at the hotel, we’ll spend a special food-lovers’ day in the Castelli Romani – the countryside just outside of Rome and enjoy a winery visit and lunch.
After returning from our day in the countryside, you’ll have the late afternoon free to roam Rome on your own.
We’ll join back up in the evening for an arrivederci Roma dinner together.

Day 5: Travel to Florence – Welcome to Florence and the Uffizi
We’ll have breakfast at our hotel in Rome and then it’s on to Tuscany.
We’ll travel from Rome to Florence.
You’ll have the late morning to get settled and to relax at the hotel or explore on your own.
In the afternoon, we’ll visit the Uffizi Gallery and take an orientation walk through Florence.
Dinner will be at a favorite trattoria.

Day 6: A Full Day of Food, Wine and Art in Florence
We’ll spend the morning on a food and market tour of Florence.
In the early afternoon before we visit the Duomo and Accademia.
You’ll have free time after our visit until we meet back together for a truly Tuscan dinner.

Day 7: Full Day in Siena – Tuscan Cooking Class and Walking Tour 
After breakfast at the hotel, we’ll head to Siena for a Tuscan cooking class.
After our cooking class, we’ll take a short guided walk through Siena to learn about its main sights and history. You’ll have the rest of the afternoon and early evening free to enjoy Siena on your own.
We’ll meet back up again in the evening for dinner at a favorite restaurant.

Day 8: Hill Towns of Chianti and its Wine
After breakfast at the hotel, we’re off to the vineyard covered hills of Chianti. We’ll visit a winery, learn about Chianti wines and have lunch paired with the winery’s wines.

After lunch we’ll spend the afternoon in a picturesque hilltown of Chianti. The afternoon will end with gelato before we head back to Florence for our last night in Tuscany together.
Dinner will be at a favorite restaurant in Florence.

Day 9:  Travel to Venice – Private Boat Tour – Cicchetti Food Tour and Wine Tasting
After breakfast in Tuscany, it’s on to Venice and our luxury hotel along the canal
Our first meal in Venice will be lunch at a favorite trattoria.
In the late afternoon, enjoy the beauty of Venice and its canals on a private guided boat tour of the Grand Canal and its smaller ones.  We’ll have a cicchetti food tour with one of my best Venetian friends, and we’ll finish the evening with an introduction to Venetian wines at a favorite wine bar, where we’re sure to meet up with more friends.

Day 10: Art, Architecture & Culture of Venice – Farewell Venetian Dinner
In the morning, we’ll take an historical walking tour visiting the Rialto market and its surroundings.
Lunch will be at a local trattoria.
In the afternoon, we’ll take a private guided tour St. Mark’s Square and the Doge’s Palace.
Tonight is our farewell dinner at a top Venetian restaurant.

Day 11 ~ Arrivederci Italia
Breakfast at the hotel and then we’ll say good-bye. Your transfer will take you to the Venice Airport or train station.


***Sequence of classes, activities and excursions may vary. The final itinerary will be given to each guest on the first day of the vacation. Whenever there are local festivals or events happening during a tour, we will try to include them with adjustments to the itinerary to enhance your vacation experience.

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