The city of Naples captivates visitors with its brilliant, bustling streets that lead to seaside esplanades and views to the infamous the volcanic peak of Mount Vesuvius. The gleaming palaces and villas will cast a wide net near magnificent churches and celebrated pizzerias, the latter filling the air with the aroma of savory sauces and melted cheese. Cultures from the Byzantines to the French still influence the city’s heritage and architectural splendor with gorgeous facades that line the cobbled lanes of the center.
Your flight will land at Naples International Airport, where your private transfer will meet you upon arrival and escort you to the comforts of your luxury accommodation. You will settle into the cozy ambiance of your hotel before meeting your private chef for an immersive introduction to the renowned flavors of Campania. You will learn the history of pizza in Naples in connection to the former Kingdom of Italy as you mix water, flour, and salt while making the dough. When the pizza is assembled, you will have the chance of cooking the dish in a woodfire oven where you will add an extra layer of flavor. Finally, you will sample the iconic pizza recipe, noticing the crunchy curst that will be complete with a tangy flavor and brought together with a savory and bright tomato sauce.
In the morning, the bakeries and cafés around Naples will fill with the aroma of freshly baked sfogliatelle, which is a traditional pastry with a flaky crust and soft inside that is often stuffed with cream and fruit. Your guide will meet you in the hotel lobby after breakfast eager to introduce you to the splendor of Naples, beginning with the National Archeological Museum. The fascinating galleries were established in the eighteenth century and inside former cavalry barracks. You will follow your guide through the highlights of the museum where you will be able to see the sensational Farnese Marble collection and mosaics that date back to Greek and Roman antiquity. The Alexander Mosaic was crafted in 100 BC and was discovered at the House of the Faun in Pompeii. The remarkable artwork depicts Alexander the Great in battle against Darius III of Persia.
Outside the museum, your guide will lead you through narrow lanes of Naples’s city center where the aroma of fresh espresso will emanate from the popular corner bars. You will visit the Cappella Sansevero, which is a chapel that was constructed in the sixteenth century and was decorated with an elaborate Baroque design.
The morning light will wash over the city as it glints against the azure, Tyrrhenian Sea and showcases the grandeur of the city. The Royal Palace was constructed in the seventeenth century and contains aspects of sophisticated, Baroque design. Your guide will escort you away from the hotel in Naples to the entrance of Pompeii for a private exploration of the excavated, ancient city.
The city now acts as an open-air museum that depicts the daily life of an important Roman port city that has been preserved beneath 20 feet of ash and pumice stone after the eruption of Mount Vesuvius nearly 2,000 years ago. After beginning the tour at the Roman Forum, you will venture to the top of the Teatro Grande, which can support up to 5,000 spectators. The top row will offer a spectacular view that sweeps across the city and leads to the lingering, nefarious peak of Mount Vesuvius in the distance.
The neighboring Teatro Piccolo is the earliest example of a Roman theater with a roof that was discovered in Italy with foundations that date back to around 75 BC. You will reach the Villa of the Mysteries, which was named after a series of paintings that was uncovered in a single room and illustrates a mysterious young woman who is participating in a cult initiation ritual. The strong depiction of the rites, in addition to the intricate detail of the woman, will produce an enchanting effect on the viewer.
The luscious retreat of Ravello will stands above the Amalfi Coast at nearly 2,000 feet above sea level and will offer views of the Tyrrhenian Sea as it glisten against the rising seaside cliffs. The cathedral will shape the skyline of the main piazza as it looms above the café tables and chairs where locals sip their morning cappuccino. Your guide will greet you at the hotel and will lead you on a remarkable tour of the Amalfi Coast, beginning with Piazza Vescovado at the heart of Ravello. The Duomo was constructed in the eleventh century and was dedicated to St. Pantaleone. The mixture of Moorish and Byzantine influences on the bell tower will capture the remarkable history of the region’s trade across the Mediterranean.
The city of Amalfi was once a naval powerhouse that traded with global powers like the Byzantine Empire. You will follow your guide through the winding lanes and along the cobbled piazzas that open to the lavish beach. You will then visit an eleventh-century cathedral that is located in the center of the city.
Your immersive exploration of the Amalfi Coast and its culture will culminate with a wine tasting back in Ravello. The terraced vineyards are famous for absorbing the nutrients in the limestone cliffs and tastes that are shaped by the sea breeze, mountain vegetation, and Mediterranean climate. This winery is over a century old, and you can wander through the vines with your guide to learn more about the heritage and culture of the wine from this region. In the tasting room, your guide will pour a sample of the Costa d’Amalfi DOC, which blends Falanghina and Biancolella grapes. You will notice the floral aroma that emanates from the glass and mixes with hints of honeysuckle.
The sunrise will return the spectacular view of the Amalfi Coast. A series of marble busts will line the belvedere that frame the glinting blue sky and water. After breakfast, your guide will direct you along the Amalfi Coast and inland through the plains of Campania to reach the treasured ruins of Paestum. The fascinating temples with Greek foundations date back to the fifth century BC, with the largest of the three remaining structures being dedicated to the goddess Hera.
Your guide will point out the complex detail that adorns the columns and consist of 24 flutes instead of the typical 20. The scent of herbaceous grass will fill the air as you follow your guide between the stellar ruins to the Basilica Paleocristiana, which is an early Christian church that overtook the former pagan temple around the fifth century AD. Archeologists have peeled away the Baroque pillars to reveal the authentic Greco-Roman columns along the walls and the original floor that is located over six feet below the ground level.
After strolling along the ruins of Paestum, your guide will lead you to a private farm that is known for making delicious buffalo mozzarella cheese. The water buffalo will graze on the lush grass and spread across the expansive landscape. Inside the farm, your guide will explain the process of making the cheese as the artisan mixes milk, rennet, citric acid, and salt. You will have the opportunity to sample the fresh cheese and find the outer, springy texture that gives way to a luscious, creamy center with a clean, bright flavor. The cheese tasting will be followed with a chocolate experience that allows you to see how using buffalo milk as a base can impact yogurt, ice cream, and chocolates. The artisan will add the raw cocoa to the mixture of fresh buffalo milk to craft the sensational chocolate. You can sample the combination for a unique flavor that will be completed with notes of intense spice and bitterness that will be rounded out with a soft sweetness.
After breakfast, your private driver will take you from the elevated plateau of Ravello to the most eastern city on the Amalfi Coast: Vietri sul Mare. The scenic drive along a stretch of the coastline’s 25-mile-long road winds alongside the cliffs, plunging into the sea. Upon reaching the city, you will notice the way the city center shines with bright Mediterranean colors that originate from the ceramic tiles that adorn the storefronts, homes, and the eighteenth-century dome of the church of San Giovanni Battista.
You will meet your artisan ceramics instructor who carries on the tradition of handmade artwork that date back to the fifteenth century. The private demonstration will become a captivating experience as you watch the fluid movement of the artisan. You will follow the artist’s example after the demonstration by making your own ceramic piece while celebrating the heritage of the city and embracing a part of the local culture with vibrant flair.
In the morning, the cafés in Piazza Vescovado will open their doors, returning the refreshing aroma of espresso to the streets. With time before your private transfer arrives, you can stroll through the gardens of Villa Rufolo, which is a gorgeous, palatial complex that was constructed in the thirteenth century. The nineteenth-century garden contains historic Moorish towers that have inspired the legendary composer Richard Wagner. You can also relax in the soothing ambiance that stems from the impressive view of the overlooking cliffs, lush terraces, and luminous waters before meeting your private transfer and continuing to Naples International Airport for your flight home.
The beauty of Italy encourages a leisurely pace during your 7-day cultural history tour of the Amalfi Coast. The famous splendor of the towns that overlook the Tyrrhenian Sea will enchant you with promises of ancient cities that are shaped by the landscape in addition to the preserved culinary recipes that are defined by the seasonal, fresh, and local ingredients. The limestone cliffs will plunge into bright blue waters, accentuating the pristine Mediterranean ambiance. Here, life revolves around the picturesque piazzas and seductive sounds of waves that splash against the various beaches.
Your exploration of the Amalfi Coast’s illustrious history and rich culture will begin with your arrival at Naples International Airport. Two nights in Naples provides an immersive experience of the bustling streets and charming vibrancy that spread from the charismatic harbor to the foothills of Mount Vesuvius. Your guided tours will provide first-hand insight into the heritage of cooking in Naples, which has amassed unique customs that pull inspiration from the various cultures that once occupied the region while simultaneously remaining connected to the roots of Southern Italian cuisine. Traversing the city with a local guide will offer a different perspective of the cultural heritage of the city center that is complete with artistic churches, marvelous art, and remarkable architecture. An escorted tour through the National Archeological Museum will demonstrate the remarkable, artistic history of the region and its connection to the greater Mediterranean civilizations throughout ancient history.
Transfer to Ravello for four nights by way of Pompeii, where you will take time to embrace the captivating homes, streets, and shops that uncover the secret daily lives of famous figures. The town of Ravello will become a stunning base from which to explore the surrounding Amalfi Coast with a gorgeous panoramic view of the shoreline and a quiet atmosphere. You will enjoy your time with a private guide as you wander the streets of Ravello and visit the town of Amalfi before sampling a selection of local wines that are known for their flavor and significance.
Finally, stroll through the Paestum Archeological Park with a private guide where you will gain deeper insight into the Greek settlements that were once located in Italy. You will also have delightful demonstrations from artisan artisans that make buffalo mozzarella and chocolate using buffalo milk. Your final day along the Amalfi Coast will take you to Vietri sul Mare, which is a town that is famous for its ceramics. Here, you can partake in a ceramics lesson and enjoy the casual seaside atmosphere of the antique streets. You can always extend your vacation with a focus on the history of Puglia or the culture of Piedmont to further experience the marvelous heritage of Italy. Don’t take just our word for it - consider reading some of our travelers’ reviews of Italy.
$1920 per person (excluding international flights)
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