France as it used to be.

An ancient land of lush valleys, majestic castles, soaring limestone cliffs, meandering rivers, painted caves and a star studded cuisine, the Dordogne is a place where you can lose yourself for a while.  It’s a place to step back in time while visiting fortified bastides, ancient pilgrimage sites and medieval towns and villages considered to be some of the most beautiful in France.

If you like slightly off the beaten path destinations rich in a culture and tradition that still thrives, join our small group of like-minded travelers to this unique area of southwest France.  It will be a journey to delight each and every one of your senses and bring your camera, there’s an award-winning photograph at every turn and from every vista.

Solo travelers are welcome.  We will be happy to match you up with another solo traveler if desired.  Single rooms are also available.

Each outing on the itinerary includes a professional, English speaking guide, van and driver.


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Small Group Travel

We offer small group travel to unique and slightly off the beaten path destinations.  These are cultural tours with the purpose of getting to know the history, customs, foods and people.  Trips are usually 12 to 14 people but often can be as few as 6.

Small group travel offers advantages to independent and large group travelers alike.

Benefits of Small Group Travel

  • Like minded people – traveling alone can get lonely and in a small group you get to meet people who share a similar passion for travel.
  • Time saver and peace of mind – everything is done for you…itinerary, transportation, accommodations, schedule and guides when needed. Costs are known upfront.  You can relax and enjoy yourself.
  •  It’s personal – you are an individual, not part of a herd.
  • It’s flexible – if something comes up, it’s easy to be spontaneous and take advantage of some new discovery at a moment’s notice.
  • There’s more discovery – by getting off the beaten path with close-up exposure to local life, local restaurants and small boutique hotels.  Local tour guides give unique slices of local life allowing for a whole new perspective.

Small Group Trip to Calabria

Calabria Itinerary

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Day 1:  Here at Last!
Arrive at Lamezia Terme International Airport. Drive south to the charming fishing village of Scilla and check into your Bed and Breakfast located in the oldest and most picturesque area of the village.  You will have time to settle into your room, nap or explore the village before the group will gather for a delicious Calabrian-style seafood feast.

 Overnight Scilla  D

Day 2:  Anchors Away
After breakfast at your B&B you will board a boat for a ½ day excursion through the sparkling waters along the Calabrian Coast, known as the costa viola, to see the tuna fishing port of Palmi.  During your sail, you can sample delightful Calabrian antipasto and take an espresso or sip a cool Calabrian aperitivo.

After the cruise you will have the rest of the afternoon to further explore the village of Scilla, take a nap or sit in a café and people watch.

Be sure to catch the sunset over the Straits of Messina for it is at this time the sea turns a deep purple color giving this area its name.

For dinner you have the opportunity to investigate one of the many delicious restaurants in Scilla on your own.

After dark don’t miss the fireworks from the volcano island of Stromboli.

Overnight Scilla   B, Snacks

Day 3:  Shopping and Nude Greek Men
Breakfast at your B&B after which you will drive about 20 minutes to Reggio Riace Bronze Warrior, Calabria, Italy, Greek, Age of PericlesCalabria for a morning at the delight your senses open-air market. We will have a guided your of the lungomare, other interesting sights and In the afternoon you will visit the museum, along with the guide, where the superb Riace Bronzes (7 foot tall nude greek warriors) are housed.  The museum also displays artifacts found throughout Magna Grecia of which Calabria is a part.  Return to Scilla.

Overnight Scilla  B

Day 4:  Head For the Hills
Breakfast at your B&B and then Up, Up you go into the Aspromonte mountains where you will have a guided visit to a ghost town.  After finding out what happened to all the people who used to live here, you will have lunch in a special, family owned agriturismo where the food and the service is remarkable.

Next stop, a village where ancient Greek is still spoken.  Much of southern Italy had been settled by Greeks fleeing their city-states as early as the 8th century BC.  You will have time to wander the village all the while admiring stunning views of mountains and Sea.

It’s time to head back to your beautiful fishing village, put our feet up, sip an aperitivo and watch another magnificent sunset.  Tomorrow you change locations…you will be on the Ionian Sea side of the peninsula.

Overnight Scilla   B, L

Chiesetta di Piedigortta, PizzoDay 5:  Pack Your Bags – You’re Headed for the Ionia Sea
Breakfast at your B&B.
The largest church in Calabria, located at our first stop, is located in a well-preserved medieval village.  It was consecrated in, get this, 1045, and many of the columns used in its construction came from ancient Greek temples once located in a seaside town not far away.  You will have time to explore the village sites and have lunch.

Your next stop is a small village on the Tyrrhenian Sea.  There will be time to wander the narrow streets, visit the unique and unusual Chiesetta di Piedigrotta and indulge in an afternoon snack of tartufo, the gelato Pizza is known for….a mixture of chocolate and hazelnut ice cream filled with solid chocolate…the perfect afternoon pick-me-up (Yum).

You continue your journey and cross the peninsula and check in to your beautiful agriturismo, an Italian farm with rooms, a swimming pool and its own private beach!    An aperitivo with your toes in the sand anyone?

Farm-fresh organic fruits and vegetables straight from the farm’s garden will be prepared for you in the cucina-calabrese style accompanied by perfectly paired local DOC wines for dinner.  Delizioso.

Overnight Sellia Marina   B, D

Day 6:  Mountain Lakes and Waterfalls
Breakfast at the agriturismo.

Mountains cover most of Calabria offering some of the toe’s most beautiful natural sites.  You will climb into the Sila mountain range (don’t panic it’s by car) this morning, breathe the fresh, clean mountain air and visit a magnificent waterfall.  A delicious lunch is planned for you at a lakeside, family owned restaurant after which you will return to your restful agriturismo and have a chance to taste some of the farm’s organic products.

A nearby wine producer will be there to share some of his vino to accompany your tasting.  If still hungry, you can take a trip to a nearby town for a light dinner.

Overnight Sellia Marina   B, L

Day 7:  What’s Cookin’?
Breakfast at the agriturismo.

Then, prepare yourself for a day with Massimo, a talented chef who learned cooking at his Calabrian mother’s knee before going to culinary school. Massimo will guide you through the market choosing the freshest ingredients available for your hands-on cooking class.  Be prepared though, Massimo has a twinkle in his eye, a quick wit and a side-splitting sense of humor.  Bring a hearty appetite, a powerful thirst and your funny bone.  This will be a day to remember.  Buon Appetito!

After resting a bit, you will go to the nearby Lido where you can join the local people making their evening passagiatta and where you will have a chance to have a light dinner on your own.  A list of restaurants will be provided to give you an idea about some delightful choices.

Overnight Sellia Marina  B, L

Day 8:  It’s All In Ruins
Breakfast at the agriturismo.

Ancient ruins of former settlements are on your schedule today in sea side towns of next to each other.   This area of Calabria has been claimed at one time or other by the Greeks, Romans, Byzantines and Arabs.  The Normans were in this part of Italy too and there are castles to prove it!  Your guided tour includes an ancient archeological park and a village known for its ceramics.  Shopping anyone?  A delicious lunch in planned and a chance to participate in making a terra cotta piece of your own.

You will spend the early evening  strolling the Catanzaro Lido where you will have the opportunity to try award winning gelato at a two-time national champion gelateria.

Overnight Sellia Marina  B, L

Day 9:  Castle In The SeaLe Castella, Italy, Calabria, Ionian Sea
Breakfast at the agriturismo.

Today you will drive a short distance to a handsome castle on a tee-tiny island right next to the mainland.  Luckily you can explore its ancient stone ramparts and its once beautiful interior.  Bring your cameras…this place is quite unique.  Lunch will be on your own.  Al fresco dining anyone?

Your farewell dinner will be at the agriturismo.  As a special treat, you will have musicians playing some traditional Calabrese folk music.  Maybe they will do a tarantella Calabrese style.  Mamma Mia….could it get any better than this!

 Overnight Sellia Marina   B, D

Day 10:  Boo Hoo Hoo
Transfer to airport and goodbye to Calabria…arrivederla.

Price includes 10 Days/9 Nights Plus:
  • 9 nights of accommodation in quaint, family run B&Bs and agriturismos.  You only change location once.
  • 9 Breakfasts, 4 Lunches, and 3 dinners.
  • Hands on cooking class with a native Calabrian and culinary-trained chef.  This includes a tour of the outdoor market to choose the freshest ingredients for class.
  • 1/2 day coastal boat trip which includes antipasto and drinks on board.
  • Guides and Entrance Fees.
  • Transfers to and from Lamezia Terme Airport (SUF)
  • Daily transportation to destinations included in itinerary.
Tour offered September 2013.  (See ** Below)
Every effort will be made to follow the Itinerary above.  However, unforeseen events can occur due to circumstances beyond anyone’s control.
Interested in continuing your Southern Italy journey?  Take a look at the Aeolian Islands add on here.
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