Itinerary Highlights
    • Sample Emilia-Romagna’s delicious local produce
    • Explore Bologna and Parma with private guides
    • Marvel at the stunning mosaics of Ravenna
    • Visit churches, palazzos and famous frescoes throughout the trip

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The riches of Emilia-Romagna can be discovered one-by-one during this nine-day trip across four beautiful Italian cities. In Bologna, the silhouette of Medieval towers provides a fitting backdrop in this culture-rich city that’s home to Italy’s oldest university and known as its culinary capital. While you’re here, a private tour guide will show you some of its highlights. You’ll then drive on to Parma, where you’ll discover the city’s beautiful frescoes and façades during another private tour. If you’d prefer to spend your time sampling Parmigiano Reggiano and sipping Lambrusco, we can also arrange a private tasting session of the city’s local produce. Ravenna is your penultimate stop, known for its dazzling mosaics that hide inside seemingly sombre buildings.
And finally you’ll come to Padua, home to the Scrovegni Chapel and Giotto’s magnificent frescoes, along with the largest square in the country. Emilia-Romagna brings together the best of Italy: incredible local produce, fascinating architecture and beautiful scenery, all waiting to be enjoyed as you drive from city to city. In each location, you’ll stay in hotels that reflect the history and authenticity of this magnificent region. And if you need any recommendations or assistance while you’re away, our local Concierge is always on hand.


Everything is 100% tailored to you


Your nine-day trip to Italy begins with a two-hour flight to the country’s culinary capital: Bologna. When you land, you’ll be privately transferred to your accommodation in the historic centre, a family-run hotel just moments from Piazza Maggiore and the fountain of Neptune. If you’re peckish after the flight, head to one of the many nearby restaurants to sample some real Italian ragù alla Bolognese – for recommendations, just ask our local Concierge.



We’ll organise for you to see Bologna in the company of a private guide today. Capital of Emilia-Romagna, Bologna is known as the ‘red city’ thanks to the warm hue of its rooftops. It also has a reputation as an intellectual city, as it’s home to one of Europe’s oldest universities. As you make your way through Bologna with your knowledgeable guide, you’ll see sights such as Piazza Maggiore, the Farnese Palace, the Fountain of Neptune, the Stock Exchange, the Palazzo del Podestà and the Basilica of San Petronio: a church decorated with frescoes by Giovanni da Modena depicting Dante's Divine Comedy. After all that sightseeing, you’ll have the rest of the day to relax in Bologna and, of course, sample more of this foodie city’s delicious dishes. If you’d like to dive deeper into Bologna’s food culture, we can arrange for you to take a private tour of the markets.



Today you’ll pick up your rental car and drive for just over an hour until you reach Parma. You’ll spend two nights in a beautiful hotel near the Palazzo della Pilotta and the magnificent medieval baptistery. When you arrive, take a moment to relax in the tranquil atmosphere of the interior courtyard before exploring your new surroundings.



Parma has plenty to offer beyond its famous ham, cheese and liqueur, and you’ll discover it today in the company of a private guide. At the Cattedrale di Parma, you’ll take in its beautiful marble façade before stepping inside to see the rooms full of frescoes. You’ll also visit one of Italy’s largest theatres, the Farnese Theatre, which has been restored to its former glory after it was almost completely destroyed during a 1944 bombing raid. This small city is wonderfully walkable, so head out on foot to explore the sights, stopping at a traditional trattoria along the way for some food. If you like, we can also arrange for you to have a private tasting of Parma’s famous local produce.



Your next stop is Ravenna, about a two-hour drive away. You’ll spend two nights here in an old restored palazzo located close to the city centre and the Basilica di San Vitale. When you arrive, unwind after the journey in the interior garden or on the terrace with a view across the rooftops – the choice is yours.



Famous for its Byzantine splendours, this city was a capital three times, first of the Western Roman Empire, then the Kingdom of the Ostrogoths, and finally the Byzantine Empire. Needless to say, there’s plenty to get stuck into: marvel at the marble decorations and mosaics inside the Basilica di San Vitale; visit the Mausoleo di Galla Placidia, whose sombre exterior contrasts with the electric green and orange mosaics hiding inside; see the Basilica di Sant'Apollinare in Classe, which is a fine example of early Christian architecture; admire the UNESCO World Heritage-listed Archbishop's Chapel of St. Andrew with its stunning mosaics; or visit Dante's Tomb. You’re free to explore this fascinating city at your leisure, but if you would prefer to have some guidance, we can arrange a private guide to show you around the city’s must-see spots.

DAYS 7 & 8


Your final stop is Padua, one of Italy’s most artistic cities. The journey takes around two hours and 15 minutes, but you have the option to make a pitstop in Ferrara along the way to take a bike ride through the city. When you arrive in Padua, you’ll set down your suitcases for two nights in a beautiful old house with bright, spacious rooms. This romantic property sets the tone for your time in a city full of enchanting buildings and incredible artwork. While you’re here, visit the majestic church that was built in 1232, sip espresso as you look out across the vast Prato della Valle square, wander through the beautiful UNESCO World Heritage-listed botanical garden, see Giotto’s famous frescoes in the Scrovegni Chapel, or take a cruise along the canal.



Today your trip to Italy comes to an end. You’ll drive to Venice where you’ll drop off your rental car and board either your flight or train back to the UK.

A la carte


What us Brits lovingly call ‘spag bol’ is unrecognisable from the Bolognese sauce it was inspired by. So, for a taste of real Bolognese cuisine, head into the city’s old streets and let yourself be tempted by pastries, fruit, vegetables, cheese and antipasti, in particular the wonderful mortadella ham. During this tour, you’ll have a private guide to lead the way and introduce you to Bologna’s most delicious culinary offerings.


The story of Parmigiano Reggiano begins in the cellars of its factory where the wheels begin to mature. After a tasting of this deeply flavoursome cheese accompanied by a glass or two of Lambrusco (sparkling red wine), you’ll then go on to learn about the art of producing the famous balsamic vinegar of Modena before tasting it for yourself. A private guide will accompany you throughout this activity.


Listed as a UNESCO World Heritage Site, this peaceful provincial-looking town hides a particular form of dazzling treasure: mosaics. These brilliant mosaics live inside buildings with sober architecture, and were accumulated when Ravenna was the capital of the Western Roman Empire. During this tour of the city with a private guide, you’ll visit its most important monuments to see the mosaics up close and learn more about this wonderful combination of Greco-Roman artistic tradition and Christian iconography.


On the way to Padua, you have the option to stop at the UNESCO World Heritage-listed Ferrara. This city is an exceptional example of town planning from the Renaissance period, and the plan and forms from that era are still visible today. You’ll explore this charming little town by bike, visiting the Este Castle, the Saint George Cathedral and the former Jewish ghetto.

A Rough Idea of Price

Dependent on season, accommodation and activities
The estimated cost for this trip starts from £1,880 to £2,780 per person. The final cost of the trip depends on the way we tailor it especially for you. The final cost varies according to several factors, which include the level of service, length of trip and advance booking time. The exact price will be provided on your personalised quote. The average starting price for this trip is £2,430 per person.
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