Food N' Wine Vacations Blog

Discover what Tuscany is best known for

Posted by smadar Palace on Thu, Jul, 25, 2013

The most memorable vacations aren't necessarily the most extravagant, nor the most opulent. In order for a vacation to truly stay with you, and provide a lifetime of glorious return on your investment, it needs to be more of an experience and less of an event. You need to look back on your photographs and allow your senses to engage, becoming awash with nostalgia.
best of italy Tour
The best tours of Italy are like that. Authenticity is the theme and finding yourself among the fields of Tuscany, the hills of Umbria, and the grounds of the beautiful B&B you’ll come to love as your Italian vacations home, is just the beginning.

Learn to cook in the way of those native to the region. Time and patience may be in short supply in your home kitchen, but they are key ingredients in any genuine Italian dish. The culinary customs of your instructor are sure to become a vital part of your new-found recipe for life.
italy tours 2013
Small Towns Big Memories

As you traverse the small towns and unique villages which are part of the itinerary, you’ll come to know Tuscan life in a manner absent from the less-intimate, generic commercial tours. You’ll be offered an opportunity to get to know the people and culture, the heartbeat of the region, in a way unlike any other. Your experience will be yours and no one else’s.  You’ll experience one of the best tours of Italy.

Intimate family wineries, owned and operated through generations of famiglia, welcome you in the most hospitable way. You’re invited to see the art of winemaking, and likely be offered a sample of their product. You may be invited to sit, converse and get to know your hosts. You arrive a visitor, and depart feeling as though you’ve made a friend on the best tours of Italy.
Accommodations for the best tours of Italy could not be more splendid. This beautiful villa has been owned by nine generations of a noble family, who've taken every consideration in preserving the architectural integrity of the centuries-old home. From the hand-painted frescos to the breathtaking gardens, you’ll marvel at your home for the week on one of the best tours of Italy.
Nestled in the lush hills of Chianti, this lovely villa provides a balm for the senses. Quiet, reflective moments in the gardens, or relaxing by the pool, become infused with the scent of lemon and lavender. Birdsong tickles your ears and the sight of vineyards, olive groves, and the rolling distant hills will never grow old on one of the best tours of Italy.
wine tours italy
The best tours of Italy are ones which engage you for a long time after you bid “Ciao” to your hosts and the new friends you’ve made. Italian vacations aren’t difficult to find, however a vacation to Italy that becomes the experience of a lifetime is rare. Don’t pass up an opportunity to immerse yourself in the cuisine, culture, wine and artistry among the best tours of Italy.. 
 Want to see unique itineraries in Italy: Check out Best Tours of Italy
Download  a Free Guide:  How to find   YOUR  Tour to Tuscany

Topics: Best tours of Italy, best of italy tour, italy travel tours, italy tours 2013

The most interesting food festivals in Umbria

Posted by smadar Palace on Tue, Jul, 02, 2013

Fall in Italy is a unique time for food vacations. Mother nature sets a glorious back drop of rich autumnal color, and  "sagre", or festivals, abound! Every town has it's own celebration around a unique harvest or local delicacy and food vacations to Italy are a great way to experience the culture.
The Italian region of Umbria literally comes alive with food festivals in the Fall. As the harvest time draws to a close, many of the villages, large and small, are in a festive mood and with the grape and olive groves paused in production, it’s time to celebrate. 

The festivals we visit on food vacations to Italy are unique and individual as these quaint villages themselves. From the  beautiful accommodations in Medieval Spoleto, we’ll embark on a journey of discovery, touring classic towns such as Assisi, Norcia, Perugia, Montefalco, Spello and Todi. We’ll take in a cooking lesson, taste the local flavor in an intimate way, and, of course, experience true Umbrian fun as we tour the sagre. 
 food tours- Italy
Truffle Festival

Truffles, a rare delicacy often reserved for the rich, are celebrated in October. For foodies, a taste of this uniquely-flavored and rare fungi is certainly on their “bucket list”. Even those individuals who have no interest in tasting this delectable morsel will enjoy the festival. You can wander from stall to stall sampling local meats, cheeses, and other Umbrian delicacies. 

 Chestnut Festival

Surely, if Autumn in Italy had a flavor, it would be roasted chestnut. The streets vibrate with this delicious tree nut. The aroma of roasting chestnut tickles your nose and awakens your senses the minute you disembark to tour the festival. Your mouth waters as you realize you'll sample various dishes. From sweet to savor, food stands beckon you to try and buy on your food vacations to Italy.
 Chestnut festival Italy

 Chocolate Festival

The highlight of all food vacations to Italy in the Fall.  Chocolate, in all it’s decadent deliciousness is displayed in every form imaginable.  Display tables groan under samples of chocolate available to taste and purchase, from sweet to savory-all temptingly calling to your senses.
Sample such too-good-to-not-be-sinful items as truffles infused with everything from hazelnuts to chillis, languidly luscious hot chocolate, from deep and dense to lightly sweet, richly infused baked goods, and chocolate in it’s most basic form.
Purchase treats from some of the world’s most recognized chocolatiers. Names such as Lindt, Perugina, Toblerone, Milka, and Motta are easily recognized, but smaller, lesser known artisans of this lusty confection are represented as well. 

Fall food vacations to Italy are like no other.  though sampling special treats is what these sagre are all about, your palate isn’t all that will be delighted on these unique food vacations. Many local artisans and craftsmen are present and ready to provide you with a unique souvenir of this most unique of vacations to Italy.  The warm hospitality of your hosts, and the one-of-a-kind experience of staying in a private estate, combined with the celebratory atmosphere of Umbrian Autumn is sure to provide a lifetime of memories.


Want to see a sample itinerary: Fall for food vacations to Italy

Topics: Culinary Tours, Culinary vacations, food vacations, Best tours of Italy, small group Travel, vacation to italy, Italian vacation

The most famous places to visit in Umbria, Italy

Posted by smadar Palace on Fri, Apr, 12, 2013

Umbria Tour

Italy is rich with historical significance and there exist infinite possibilities for those on a Food Vacation to experience Italy. To engage in an adventure for all the senses, immerse yourself in a region known for it's fabled history, stunning local artistry, breathtaking vistas, true artisan cheeses, wines which embody the very sunshine dappling the vineyards, and local culinary examples with flavors that dance on the palate. That region is Umbria.

Norcia, Umbria, Italy

For those on a Food Vacation, Umbria offers an intimate perspective of all things essentially Italian. Stroll Spoleto's cobbled streets, as saints and majesties before you, and imagine the walled settlement as it was centuries ago. Climb the hills of Todi, where legend has it Hercules faced down his fire-breathing foe, Caucus, and witness vistas of heart-tugging beauty.

Spoleto, Umbria, Italy

Assisi, rich in Christian history, is the birthplace of much-venerated saint, Francis of Assisi. The Basilica of Saint Francis D’Assisi houses stunning frescos, and galleries along humble streets showcase the areas celebrated art. Breathtaking views abound as you wind along the lofty streets of Assisi on your Food Vacation in  Umbria,Italy.

Todi, umbria,Italy

The fanciful town of Bevagna beckons you within it’s city walls.If the timing is right, you’ll be treated to a taste of medieval Italy by way of one of the famed street festivals. In Montefalco, those on a food and wine tour Italy will sample wines from the oldest, and still operational, winery in Umbria. A sumptuous luncheon proffers celebrated local fare, along with wine made from grapes grown under the Umbrian sun.


Bevagna, Umbria, Italy

On a Food Vacation in Italy you'll meet Umbrian cheese makers, artisans who craft local treasures which evoke images of rolling hillsides and long lazy days. Famed Umbrian truffle farms offer a chance to discover these precious culinary gems for yourself. The chocolate of Perugia is a work of art. Once you taste this sensuous repaste, perhaps one you’ve created yourself, under the tutelage of a master chocolatier, your deepest chocolate desires will be sated.

Black Truffle, Umbria,.Italy

Umbria opens it’s arms in welcome, enfolding you into a region whose history and pride spans bloodlines and borders. Your Food Vacation in Italy becomes your own unique experience, foretold by the ages, philosophers, statesmen and majesties alike, and one you will cherish for a lifetime. Your enchantment cannot be bound by a single visit as you relive your experience again and again.

Want to see a sample itinerary in Umbria?

Culinary Paradise

Topics: Cooking Tours, Culinary Tours, Italy, Wine Tours in Italy, Food And Wine Tours, Culinary Travel, Cooking travel Tours, Italy culinary tours, cooking in Tuscany, Small Group Tours, Tuscan wineries, culinary tour tuscany, Italy cooking class, Cooking in Italy, Tour cooking, Cooking in Italy vacations, Tours to Tuscany, Cooking class in Italy, cooking classes in Umbria

Cooking in Tuscany

Posted by smadar Palace on Fri, Mar, 29, 2013

Cooking in Tuscany is an exciting adventure. Your stay at a historic Mill and Inn provides an authentic backdrop for immersion in the Tuscan lifestyle, and underscores the saying “Chi Mangia Bene Vive Bene”, “Those who eat well, live well”. 

cooking in Tuscany,  country inn
Your vacation begins with a traditional feast in the company of your hosts. Get to know those with whom you’ll be sharing this once-in-a-lifetime experience and familiarize your palate with the textures and flavors of honest Tuscan cuisine. 

cooking in Tuscany retaurant

With daily tours of neighboring towns and villages such as Cortona, Arezzo, and Pienza, you’ll get a sense of the culture which surrounds your Cooking in Tuscany vacation. Montepulciano is renown for it’s pork,  lentils and honey, and Pienza for the cheese. Come learn, explore and create as you experience your own personal renaissance. 

Cortona, cooking in Tuscany

The Tuscan sun renders a wealth in fresh fruits and vegetables. Fertile grazing land provides an endless buffet for livestock. Learn how to create meals enhancing the delicate nature of eggplant, tender, leafy greens, and tomatoes ablaze with flavor. Showcase regional meats and fish and learn the Tuscan secret of  using herbs and spices to enhance without overpowering. 

cooking in Tuscany, Appetizer

You’ll discover how Cooking in Tuscany utilizes the freshest, most abundant local fare, as well as olive oils, wines and vinegars, likely, from your hosts’ own groves and vineyards. Cooking in Tuscany is an art and you’ll soon put your own mark on the culinary canvas. 

Cooking in Tuscany, estate view

Begin your Cooking in Tuscany tutelage on your second day under the supervision your hostess and renown local chef.Carefully selected recipes showcase the region’s favorites. Tender stuffed eggplant served with a confit of tomato, almond and basil , ribollita, the traditional potage , saltimbocca, prepared with pork fillet and a masterful infusion of herbs, You’ll bake crusty Tuscan bread, and traditional biscotti cantucci as a sweet ending. 

Cooking in Tuscany, Saltimbocca

Day three introduces techniques even the more accomplished among you may not have mastered. Wild herb pie, with a parmesan sauce, zuppa di farro, a traditional soup incorporating an ancient grain, a rich and succulent lamb in Tuscan bread and finally, berry cake alongside a delicately-textured mascarpone mousse. 

Cooking in Tuscany, Lamb

Day Four provides a break.   Instead of cooking in Tuscany, you’ll learn the art of cheese-making from authentic cheese artisans.  The center of your evening meal will be a sampling of regional cheeses. 

Cooking school in tuscany

The fifth day of your adventure in Cooking in Tuscany is a full day indeed! Begin with a trip to the local market to procure regional delights. Return with your hosts to a private wine-tasting at their very own cellar. Learn the best way to enhance your palate through regional wines. 

Cooking in Tuscany, wine tasting

Your lesson takes place in a restaurant owned and operated by your hosts. Here, you’ll learn Cooking in Tuscany involves creativity. Bread becomes a salad in pansanella, pici pasta, a traditional pasta of Siena, is accompanied by a sauce of fresh tomatoes and aromatic herbs. Tagliatelli is topped with flavorful duck sauce, and  ravioli of nettles and ricotta is perfectly enhanced by a simple sage butter. You’ll learn long-held Tuscan secrets of turning the best of the huntsmen’s largesse into a traditional stew called scottiglia. 

Cooking in Tuscany, making pici pasta

Tuscany boasts a breathtaking coast and on your final day of Cooking in Tuscany,  you’ll prepare regional dishes showcasing it's bounty . Learn to make a simple fish broth, prepare tender-sweet scallops wrapped in bacon, with a puree of potatoes and bay leaves. Gnocchi, an Italian staple, can incorporate many flavors. Master the art of gnocchi-making with a ricotta rendition served in a seafood and saffron sauce. A casserole of monkfish and scampi, and a napoleon of custard, pears and pine nuts rounds out your Cooking in Tuscany farewell dinner. 

Cooking in Tuscany,Dessert

You’ll say “ciao” to your hosts with a promise to return to the beautiful Inn and the Tuscan countryside. Perhaps you can’t take Tuscany home with you, but you can take the experience. On any given day, when your heart is beckoned to return to the kitchens of the Famiglia Baracchi, retire to your own kitchen and recreate your adventure of Cooking in Tuscany. 


See Sample Itinerary

Topics: cooking in Tuscany, Tuscan cooking, cooking school tuscany, cooking class tuscany, tuscany cooking

A tour of the best places to visit in Tuscany, Italy

Posted by smadar Palace on Mon, Mar, 18, 2013

Travelers embarking on a tour to Tuscany have varied reasons and expectations for taking such a trip. Some go for the exquisite food and to experience another culture, some venture to these storied and fabled hills and valleys to learn more of the history surrounding this ancient region. At the end of the day, however, the joy of a tour of Tuscany comes when the traveler allowing himself to be like local for a day or a week,


Such an experience starts from the moment you arrive to Florence. Your tour to Tuscany will feel much like visiting family. Quite at home in a villa, tucked into the hills of Chianti, the grounds alive with native fruit and flora. Birdsong will greet you as you relax and get to know your hosts. 

Tuscany winery visit

You’ll be enchanted from the start. Tour a local winery and sample the heady and rich wine for which Chianti is widely known, taste true artisan cheeses made for centuries by a succession of simple cheese crafters. Stroll the quaint villages where you’ll meet the local residents, who are only too eager to offer an anecdote, a story, or a hand in friendship. Enjoy lunch in a sun-drenched café and know a moment in time, unique to your own experience in your tour to Tuscany. 

Florence by night

A visit to the region of Tuscany is to be cradled in the arms of the Renaissance. Art and architecture abound and, even those who don’t wear the mantle of art-enthusiast will come away with a deep appreciation for the ancient and authentic works of the masters, further accenting your tour to Tuscany. 

Val d'orcia, Tuscany Italy

An excursion into the Tuscan countryside will fill you with anticipation as you drink in all with which mother nature has blessed this beautiful region. The breathtaking views of the Val D’Orcia provide a backdrop for a garden of earthly delights. Stroll the organic farms, sampling the pride of generations in the ricotta and pecorino, famed cheese of Tuscany. Honey, olive oil and, of course, wine are all rendered from the lush hills of the Tuscan countryside. Enjoy a repast in this gorgeous setting, creating a memory for the rest of your life. 

Siena, tuscany

From the medieval villages of Siena, and Montepuliciano, you’ll gain a unique perspective. You can walk the path journeyed by residents for hundreds of years. Enjoy an afternoon getting lost in another time, and be forever changed by it.  Another experience in your tour to Tuscany. 

Buthcher in Chianti

The Tuscan markets are a unique experience in your tour to Tuscany. You can trust the locals to assist you in choosing the most flavorful herbs, freshest produce, and exquisite accoutrements for your cooking class. Once again, the intimate experience will be yours and yours alone. Call upon all of your senses to create-then lock in-the memories. Learn a new dish from a local chef, an artist revered and renown for creations so sublime. 

Cinque Terre, tuscany

Amidst the grandeur of Toscana, you’ll thrill at the beauty which is Cinque Terre. Translated to mean The Five Lands, this rugged and unspoiled coastline, peppered with villages, is only accessible by boat or train. A true adventure in your tour to Tuscany. 

Montefioralle, tuscany

Very few vacations can provide most everything a traveler could want to experience, but a tour to Tuscany, this authentic, humble, and breathtaking region, can offer what matters most-a soul-satisfying journey and an opportunity to create memories for a lifetime.

Want to see a sample itinerary to a tour to Tuscany? Check out Secrets of Tuscany
Download  a Free Guide:  How to find   YOUR  Tour to Tuscany

Topics: Italy, Trip to Tuscany, Tour to tuscany, Tour of Tuscany, Tuscany tour, Tuscany Italy Tours, Tours of Tuscany, tour Tuscany, Best of Tuscany tours, culinary trip Tuscany, food and wine Tour, Wine Tour Tuscany

Tourist attractions in La Rioja region of Spain

Posted by smadar Palace on Mon, Jan, 07, 2013

Nestled deep in a valley of the Sierra Cantabrian mountain range, bathed by the warm Mediterranean breezes, La Rioja, Spain produces some of the richest red wines to ever tempt a palate. The region, bordered by Basque country, produces an array of fruits, vegetables, cheeses, and meat which mingle to create a mouth-watering buffet of flavors. 


To know this region of Spain is to witness yesterday and today come together. Architecture and art, winemaking, artisanal cheese, and family farms ripe with traditional agriculture offer a landscape for the senses. You may expect to see a shepherd guiding his flock along the pastoral hillsides overlooking the rivers and streams that feed the valley of La Rioja. 


Modern roadways replace cattle trails and shepherds paths, providing access to the unique and diverse towns of  La Rioja. Spend time with the locals and you’ll feel at home in this regional bridge between Basque and Castellan cultures. Enjoy the food, wine and fellowship of the Riojan people and you’ll soon be planning your return. 

rioja- Northern spain tour

The walled city of LaGuardia hasn’t changed much since the 13th century. Situated high on a stone foundation, the city’s narrow passageways and intact maze of underground tunnels render it an auto-free zone. Wandering the bodegas (wineries) and cafes of LaGuardia proves a pleasant way to spend your day. 


Logrono is the most populated town in La Rioja and a literal mecca for those who enjoy tapas. Although the casual dining genre didn’t originate in Logrono, it’s said there are more tapas bars between the city’s two bridges than anywhere else in Spain. Logrono was a favorite destination for famed writer, Ernest Hemingway, whose lusty epicurean pursuits are legendary. 

Rioja- logrono-tapas-tour-calle-laurel

Briones, a tiny, sleepy village, boasts some of the most passionate winemakers in La Rioja. The charm of this quaint foothills town is most noted in the picturesque and unspoiled views. 


Employing long-held traditional methods of local viticulture has served Haro’s wineries well in the end result. The town is considered the regional wine capital and the much-anticipate Haro Wine Festival, held in June, is a premiere event for grower, vintner, and connoisseur alike. 

Rioja- wine tours-spain

Her fertile ground goes beyond the celebrated winemaking of La Rioja and is lush with pears, peaches, lettuces, asparagus, artichokes, and the popular piquillo pepper, present in the many regional dishes. Riojan barbecue is less genre and more culture. Believed to have evolved as a way to showcase the fruity palate of LaRioja red wines, one may challenge that theory, in turn, offering that the wine was made to enhance barbecue. 

rioja-bbq- on -vines

Welcome guests to the region will understand that the area, as the locals remind those fortunate visitors, is neither France, nor Spain, but simply La Rioja. 

Want to see sample itinerary for Rioja: Chek out Spanish wine roads adventure    

Topics: Culinary Tour, Rioja, Spain, wine region, basque country Spain, San sebastian, Gourmet tour, wine tasting in Spain, Spanish wine country, Tours to spain, wine tour spain

Provence Tour Reviews

Posted by smadar Palace on Mon, Oct, 01, 2012

Great share from guests who just came back from Provence
Vicky and I have finally recovered from the trip back from a glorious vacation in France and wanted to follow up and give you some feedback from our week in Provence.? It was outstanding!!!? We have never done a small group tour like this and were initially concerned about the interaction of everyone, particularly given the intense schedule of activities.? We were so pleased?to be with a wonderful group of people who shared a?similar?interest in food and wine.? The?accommodations?were lovely, Sandrine was a perfect hostess and the beautiful villages of Provence were an ideal backdrop. All that being said one thing made this trip truly magical and that ?was our tour guide. ?The energy, enthusiasm and passion turned what would have been a nice vacation into a very special one. In reviewing the week's itinerary I truly don't believe there is anything I would change. It certainly was an intense week but we loved each and every activity, such a nice mix of dining experiences from the goat farm to lunch at the market place. The itinerary really did give us a wonderful introduction to Provence and food and wines that we might never sample again (thinking of non-EU approved cheeses). The only suggestion that I might have (and it's a small one) is the length of the cooking class.? The first one was a bit long, I think David may have tried to do a little too much. However, the second one, on the last night, was a good length, maybe he had a better appreciation of our abilities!? Also, I think it's important to make sure we have some down time between our daytime activities and the nightly outing.? Maybe it's age, but we did appreciate at least at hour to re-charge our batteries at the end of the day. Please know these are very minor points, nothing could distract from the wonderful week we spent in Provence.
All the best,
John & Vicki

Tour Provence
Sam, had a great time!
It was a perfect week. The weather was good. I enjoyed meeting the other couples. I think we all got along great. ?Our tour guide was fantastic. I knew we were going to be busy but I enjoyed everything. Can't think of anything I would change. Food/wine choices during the week were good.
Can't think of anything negative about it.? Again, our tour guide was the perfect guide/host for this trip. Her knowledge of all things Provence really help us understand the area better. There wasn't any question she couldn't answer.
I don't know when I'd be able to afford another food/wine trip but I would sure look at what you offer if I'm going to.

Tour provence
Here are kind words ?that one of the guest wrote about our tour guide in her blog:
She is a gracious hostess who draws you in whether she’s describing how olive oil is made or how a village was taken by force in the 14th century, where to buy authentic Provence linens (not those made in China) or what wine you must try with your chocolate. she has friends throughout Provence which makes for some interesting locations for lunch. Whether it be a lesson in how to decapitate a chicken at the Avignon market — quite a lesson for a city girl — lunch at a goat farm high in the mountains, or at Lolo’s farm.

L'Isle sur La Sorgues Provence
Download  A Free Guide: Must See and Do in Provence

Topics: Cooking Tours, France vacation package, France wine Tours, France, Tours to Provence, Food And Wine Tours, Wine Tour in France, Culinary vacations, Wine Tours France, Small Group Tours, French wine country, Best of Provence, Tour Provence, Provence Travel, Provence vacation.Provence travel Tour to Provence, France wine country

Traditions and culture of Tuscany: a culinary adventure

Posted by smadar Palace on Fri, Aug, 31, 2012

Close your eyes and imagine a place so tranquil you immediately feel a sense of peaceful belonging, yet so full of life and bursting at the seams to share La Dolce Vida with any and all who inhabit it’s confines. This is the region of Tuscany.

Tuscany Tours

While a tour to Tuscany provides ample opportunity for the traditional tourist to take in it’s richly-fabled and historic gems of Florence, Siena, Val D’Orcia, Pienza and the centuries-old architectural beauty of the Cathedral of Pisa, Toscana’s truest treasure is found in the experience of day-to-day life in this unique region.

Tour to tuscany

Awaken in a place which has played host to Italian Renaissance. Experience the art of life itself which nurtured such notable artisans as Michelangelo, whose famous statue of David resides in Florence, Dante, the poet best known for his Inferno and Divine Comedy, and later, opera composer, Puccini, along with many others who’ve made a name in art, music and literature. Tuscany’s artistic legacy spans the ages.

Tuscany culinary tour

Immerse yourself in the breathtaking landscapes along the River Arno , stroll the galleries around Arezzo, Florence and Grossetto , experience the music that is Lucca and Pisa and Siena. Linger over a mid-day meal in a trattoria, unhurried, enjoying each bite, tasting each flavor in true Tuscan fashion. Sip a glass of this region’s world-class Chianti as you gaze upon vineyard hills and feel your stress ebb away.

culinary tour tuscany

To truly know the region , you must take your tour of Tuscany to the next level. Don’t merely visit, experience. Uncover the secrets that lie in the joy you feel as the breezes caress your face, carrying the heady perfume of olive groves, vineyards, and wildflower hills. Gaze upon the mountains, valleys and foothills and let your smile erupt into an unbidden sense of happiness. Share in a laugh with a locally celebrated chef as you learn the art of Tuscan cuisine. Toast the night’s blanket of stars with a local wine. This is how you experience your Tuscan vacation.

tour of tuscany

Along the way you’ll discover the secrets of Tuscanyaren’t so secret at all. Just let yourself be carried along the gentle current of Tuscan life. Soon, those secrets won’t be so mysterious, but sacred and connected to your inner traveler. A tour?to Tuscany won’t just lead you to uncover the secrets of this Renaissance region, you’ll uncover a certain character long hidden in your very soul.

Download  a Free Guide:  How to find   YOUR  Tour to Tuscany

Topics: Tours to Tuscany, Tuscany Culinary Tour, culinary tour tuscany, Tour to tuscany, Tour of Tuscany

Culinary Paradise In Italy

Posted by smadar Palace on Thu, Jul, 26, 2012


Assisi, Umbria, Italy
We are so excited to share with you the latest addition to our Culinary Tours.

A week-long culinary tour in Umbria will provide you full immersion in the local culture. We'll stay at a private palazzo in the medieval town of Spoleto, and from there we will explore classic charming towns like Assisi, Perugia, Norcia, Spello, Montefalco and Todi. We will enjoy cooking lessons with a chef, wine tastings at the oldest winery, visit a family farm and go truffle hunting, taste the best and famous cured meats, and get our hands “dirty” in a chocolate making class.
Consider?joining us on this unique Experience!

Click on the link to read the brochure
Culinary Paradise Brochure

Topics: Culinary Tours, Italy, Culinary Tour, Food And Wine Tours, Culinary Travel, Italy culinary tours, Small Group Tours, Umbria, Cooking tours in Italy, Gourmet Tours, Cooking Tour Italy, Italian cooking Trips, Italy food tours

The best Loire Valley Medieval castles to visit

Posted by smadar Palace on Sat, May, 12, 2012

Loire Valley Tours , castels

The Loire Valley stretches 170 miles along the banks of the Loire River in central France.? This fairytale region known for its many castles/chateaux, bountiful produce, artisanal cheeses and long history of viticulture, the Loire Valley remains a favorite tourist destination.

Over three hundred castles populate the valley and record its rich history dating back to the 10th century. Our favorites include:

azay La ridu, loire valley

Azay le Rideau, was built at the site of a medieval fortress in the heart of Touraine. Rising from its foundation in the Indre river in this castle is surrounded by a lovely, romantic park.

Blois Loire Valley

The Royal Castle of Blois was once occupied by King Louis XII and illustrates the evolution of French architecture from medieval, to gothic, renaissance, and 17th century classical.

Chateau cheverney Loire valley France

Chateau of Cheverny with its grand stone staircase and exquisite furnishings has been owned by one family for centuries.

Chateau chambord, Loire valley, France

 Chateau Chambord, the largest castle in the region has more than 800 elaborately sculpted columns and an astonishing double helix staircase.

Chateau Chenonceau, Loire valley, France

The Chateau Chenonceau may be the most impressive castle in France. Built as a royal residence its original architecture spans the Cher River and hosts an art gallery that rivals many museums.

Chateau villandry, Loire valley, France

With specialty gardens that include a love garden, a water garden, and color coordinated vegetable gardens, Chateau de Villandry with should not be missed.

Chteau Amboise , Loire valley, France

The medieval town of Amboise warrants a visit in and of itself, but the Chateau d'Amboise is not to be missed. Historically home to many kings it is said that Leonardo de Vinci is buried there.

Loire valley food and wine resized 600

Called the Garden of France, you'll discover gastronomical delights. From white asparagus to world famous cherries, the Loire Valley is a food lover's dream.? Also known for it's many delicious and distinctive goat cheeses, you'll sample a variety that are unique to the region.

French cheese


And then there is the wine. No tour of the Loire Valley would be complete without a visit to the world renowned vineyards.

Viticulture began in the 5th century and has been growing in the valley ever since producing dozens of varieties both red and white.

Flight Hot air Baloon, Loire valley , France

If you are on a tight schedule, consider a hot air balloon flight to enjoy the castles from above. Whether it's the wine, food, or castles that bring you to the Loire Valley, you'll be guaranteed a marvelous and delicious journey through the heart of France.

Want to see a sample itinerary? Chateaux, Vineyards and cooking class  


Topics: Culinary Tours, France, Food And Wine Tours, Culinary Travel, Wine Tours France, French wine country, Hot air balloon flight, Loire Valley Castles, Vacation To France, Loire valley tours from Paris, Tours to France, visit the Loire valley, Chateaux of the Loire