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Mediterranean Flavors: Food and Wine Traditions of Italy and Croatia

Program Number: 20710RJ
Start and End Dates:
5/31/2013 - 6/11/2013;
Duration: 11 nights
Location: Italy/Croatia
Price starting at: $6,399.00 - Price may vary based on date, departure city
Program Type: Adventure Afloat Study Cruise; Small Ship Cruising
Meals: 24; 10 Breakfasts, 6 Lunches, 8 Dinners    

Savor both the food and wine of Tuscany, Sicily and Croatia while accompanied by the crew from a famous winery in California on this culinary adventure aboard the world’s largest sailing ship. Discover Chianti vineyards first planted by monks a millennium ago, taste Sicilian honey produced in the shadow of a volcano and meet families who welcome you with local delicacies and heartfelt hospitality. We will also have the opportunity to taste and learn more about wines from Sonoma and the Russian River Valley. Mangia! Nazdravlje!




Activity Particulars

Walking up to two miles per day; some hilly, uneven terrain and cobblestones. Steep stairs without railings at historic sites.



Itinerary At-a-Glance

Florence (Italy), 3 nights; aboard Wind Surf, 7 nights.



Coordinated by Road Scholar.



Day 1: Overnight flight from the U.S.A.


Days 2-4: Arrival Florence (Italy):

Experience the Mercato di San Lorenzo, the famous food market where we will be able to see and taste all sorts of delicacies. Journey to the Chianti region for a wine tasting and visit to the cellars of the famous Castello di Verrazzano. Lodging: Boutique hotel in the heart of historic Florence.



Day 5:

Coach to Rome / embark Wind Surf: An expert-led excursion highlights the churches and piazzas of the Eternal City before you embark.



Day 6: Sorrento:

Explore the town’s ancient monasteries and splendid palazzi. Continue to the excavation site of Pompeii, frozen in time by the 79 AD eruption of Vesuvius.



Day 7: Sicily:

Stand in awe of Mount Etna, an active volcano towering 11,000 feet above the plains, and sample Sicilian delicacies.



Days 8-9: At Sea / Dubrovnik (Croatia):

Discover the medieval walled city of Dubrovnik then journey into Konavle, a hilly region of vineyards and orchards.



Day 10: Trogir & Split:

Learn the 4,000-year history of Trogir, a lovely harbor town on the site of a Greek colony. Continue to Split to enter the massive Palace of Diocletian.



Day 11: Opatija:

Go ashore in this historic resort enjoyed by the likes of Emperor Franz Joseph I of Austria. Examine some of the Roman ruins that dot the Istrian peninsula.



Day 12: Pula / disembark / coach to Venice (Italy) for departure


Wind Surf

The largest sailing ship in the world, this sleek, five-masted sailing yacht can carry up to 312 passengers. Several dining areas onboard offer fresh and seasonal preparations of Mediterranean cooking. Other public areas include two pools, two hot tubs, fitness and spa facilities, lounge, salon and “living room” / library.


Meals and Lodgings
   Hotel Cellai
  Florence, Italy 3 nights
   Wind Surf
  Wind Star - At Sea, At Sea 7 nights
 Hotel Cellai
Type: Boutique Hotel
  Ship Information: Hotel Cellai is located in the heart of the historic center of Florence in an extremely characteristic and quiet area. It is surrounded by the extraordinary beauty of churches, buildings and monuments which are unique to this city. On entering this exclusive hotel in Florence, you will immediately sense its special atmosphere as being one of warmth and intimacy, relaxation and charm. An atmosphere that makes you feel like being at home, with each detail passionately chosen and each room deserving a visit, not to mention our personal attention offered to each guest. Its style recalls that of the ancient inns of times past where young, European aristocrats stayed while discovering the beauty and artistic mysteries on offer in Italy.
  Contact info: Via 27 Aprile, 52/R, 50129
Florence,   Italy
phone: +39 055 489291
  Facility amenities: Air conditioning, direct telephone, satellite color TV, minibar, private bathroom
  Smoking allowed: No
  Additional nights prior: 150EUR, double, 130EUR, single Please contact Felice Figliuolo at 617-202-9059 to reserve pre-nights

 Wind Surf
Type: Cruise Ship
  Description: On Wind Star, you feel like you are sailing on your own private yacht. Windstar’s award-winning service and style gives you the luxury of choice to enjoy what you like, when you like and with whom you like. Indulge in a fabulous five-star dinner and great bottle of wine in The Restaurant or Candles. Treat yourself to an aromatherapy massage at WindSpa. Work out on state-of-the-art equipment in the gym. Enjoy live music and cocktails at the Pool Bar. Take a refreshing dip in the pool. Read your favorite book on our comfortable chaise lounges on deck. Test your luck in the casino. Try kayaking, waterskiing and windsurfing from our watersports platform.
  Ship Information: Wind Star Facts LENGTH: 360 feet (110 meters) at waterline; 440 feet (134 meters) including bowsprit DRAFT: 14 feet (4.1 meters) TONNAGE: 5,703 gross registered tons (grt) BEAM: 52.1 feet (15.8 meters) SAILS: 6 triangular, self-furling, computer-operated sails with 21,500 square feet (or 2,200 square meters) of Dacron surface area MASTS: 4 at 204 feet (62 meters) ENGINES: 3 diesel electric generating sets, 1 electrical propulsion motor SPEED: 11 knots with engines only; up to 15.8 knots wind only
  Contact info: 2101 4th Avenue
Suite 210
Seattle, WA 98121 USA
phone: 206-292-9606
web: www.windstarcruises.com/windstar-yacht.aspx
  Room amenities: All Staterooms Include: • Waffle Weave Robe and Slippers • Flat Screen TV with DVD player • Bose SoundDock speakers for Apple iPods • Fully-Stocked Mini Bar/Refrigerator • Safe • Direct Dial Phone • L’Occitane Bath Amenities • Wi-Fi (internet cards can be purchased at reception) • Fresh Flowers • Fresh Fruit • Granite vanity with magnifying mirror and chair • Spacious closets and drawers • Bathroom with teak floors, granite countertop, sink and shower •110/220 outlets
  Facility amenities: · Reception · The Restaurant · Candles · The Veranda · Skylight Main Lounge · Casino · Piano/Pool Bar · Watersports Platform · Saltwater Pool · Hot Tub · Gym · Signature Shop · WindSpa · Library · Infirmary with Physician
  Smoking allowed: Yes


Travel Details
  Start of Program:
Florence, Italy. The program will begin in the afternoon in the hotel lobby. You will be staying at Hotel Cellai that night.
  End of Program:
Venice, Italy. The program will end after breakfast on the last day.Please do not book flights earlier than noon on program end date. You will be staying at Wind Surf the night before.
  Required documents:
The Road Scholar Health & Safety Form is required.
  Parking availability:
N/A
Transportation (For Independent Travelers)
  Train or bus availability: See above
To Start of Program
  Location:  Florence
  Nearest airport:  Peretola Airport (FLR)
  From End of Program
  Location:  Wind Star - At Sea
  Transportation from site: Option 1: Walk approx. 10-15 minutes, across a couple bridges, to the Zattere stop and take Alilaguna Private Shuttle (water bus) Line Blu to the airport (approx. 45 minutes, 15 Euro). Option 2: Walk approx. 5-10 minutes to the San Basilio stop and take Vaporetto line 6 to Piazzale Roma (approx. 6.50 Euro). From Piazzale Roma take either the private bus (ATVO Line, 5 Euro) or the public bus (Line 5, 1.20 Euro) to the airport.
The prices listed for commercial services and facilities that are not included in the program cost, such as airport shuttles or extra nights lodging, are subject to change without notice. Since Road Scholar cannot guarantee the accuracy of these prices, we strongly suggest contacting the companies directly for the most up-to-date information.


Daily Schedule

Day 1: Arrive in Florence, Tuscan dining.
(Friday, May 31)
   
 Morning: Arrive at Peretola Airport (FLR). Meet group inside the customs area. Transfer to hotel.
 Afternoon: Welcome orientation and presentation of program.
 Dinner: Welcome dinner.
   
Accommodations: Hotel Cellai
Meals Included: Dinner

Day 2: Visits to the Mercato di San Lorenzo, Castellina in Chianti and a wine tasting at Badia a Coltibuono.
(Saturday, June 1)
   
 Breakfast: Breakfast at the hotel.
 Morning: Visit to the Mercato di San Lorenzo, the central marketplace of Florence. Then transfer to Badia a Coltibuono for a guided visit to the ancient cellars and to the beautiful Renaissance gardens surrounding the 11th century Abbey.
 Lunch: Wine tasting at Badia a Coltibuono followed by a lunch.
 Afternoon: On the way back to Florence stop at Castellina in Chianti.
 Dinner: Group dinner in Florence.
 Evening: Explore Florence on your own.
   
Accommodations: Hotel Cellai
Meals Included: Breakfast, Lunch

Day 3: Guided visit of Florence and wine tasting at Castello di Verrazzano.
(Sunday, June 2)
   
 Breakfast: Breakfast at the hotel.
 Morning: Guided exploration of Florence followed by a transfer to Castello di Verrazzano.
 Lunch: Wine tasting followed by lunch with gastronomic specialties
 Afternoon: Visit the Castello di Verrazzano in Chianti area. Explore the castle's gardens and historical ageing cellars.
 Dinner: Dinner on your own in Florence.
 Evening: Explore Florence on your own.
   
Accommodations: Hotel Cellai
Meals Included: Breakfast, Lunch

Day 4: Transfer to Rome, embark on the Wind Star.
(Monday, June 3)
   
 Breakfast: Breakfast at the hotel.
 Morning: Depart Florence for Rome.
 Afternoon: Sightseeing excursion in Rome before embarkation on the Wind Star.
 Dinner: Dinner onboard the ship.
 Evening: Enjoy an evening lecture and other activities aboard the Wind Star.
   
Accommodations: Wind Surf
Meals Included: Breakfast, Dinner

Day 5: Sorrento and Pompeii, Italy
(Tuesday, June 4)
   
 Breakfast: Breakfast onboard the ship.
 Morning: Panaromic tour of Sorrento. In the old city centre, still untouched in spite of the progress and mass tourism, have survived churches and ancient monasteries, keepers of valuable memories. Centuries old palaces and Drazzo portals evidence the splendour of the noble families of Sorrento. Via S. Cesareo, the lively "decumanus", is the beating heart of the town, with its many-coloured shops, where tourists from every part of the world crowd. But the real architectonic jewel of the town is the fourteenth century Cloister of San Francesco, with crossed tuff arches of Arabian derivation, where the traditional concerts of the "Estate Musicale Sorrentina" take place.
 Lunch: Lunch on your own in Pompeii.
 Afternoon: Visit to the Pompeii Excavation. Pompeii was buried by the eruption of Vesuvius in 79 AD. With its excavated area, extending for approximately 44 hectares, and the preservation state of its buildings, due to the particular burial (under a blanket of 6 meters of ash and rock) caused by the eruption of the Vesuvius, Pompeii can be considered the only archaelogical site which gives the real image of an ancient Roman city.
 Dinner: Dinner onboard the ship.
   
Accommodations: Wind Surf
Meals Included: Breakfast, Dinner

Day 6: Taormina, Italy
(Wednesday, June 5)
   
 Breakfast: Breakfast onboard the ship.
 Morning: This morning visit Mount Etna, Sicily's tallest peak and one of Europe's most famous active volcanoes. We will stop, en route, at Zafferano Etnea for a honey tasting. Upon arrival at Rifugio Sapienza, we will visit the Crateri Silvestri.
 Lunch: Enjoy lunch at a restaurant at Mount Etna.
 Afternoon: This afternoon, we will move on to Taormina. Here, you'll visit the most impressive monument of the city: the Greco-Roman Theatre. It has the finest site of any theatre in the world and one of the most striking monuments of antiquity.
 Dinner: Dinner onboard the ship.
   
Accommodations: Wind Surf
Meals Included: Breakfast, Lunch, Dinner

Day 7: At sea.
(Thursday, June 6)
   
 Breakfast: Breakfast onboard the ship.
 Morning: Lecture aboard ship, topic TBD
 Lunch: Lunch onboard the ship.
 Afternoon: Lecture aboard ship, topic TBD
 Dinner: Dinner onboard the ship.
   
Accommodations: Wind Surf
Meals Included: Breakfast, Lunch, Dinner

Day 8: Dubrovnik, Croatia / Konavle
(Friday, June 7)
   
 Breakfast: Breakfast onboard the ship.
 Morning: Excursion: Explore Dubrovnik: Lord Byron described Dubrovnik as “the Pearl of the Adriatic” while George Bernard Shaw called it “Paradise on Earth”. With such lavish praise heaped on the place, visitors could be forgiven for fearing it might fall short of expectations. Happily, even at first glace, it soon becomes apparent that with its towering stone walls, marble streets and beautiful baroque buildings, Dubrovnik is a city that is not just aesthetically pleasing, but steeped in a rich and fascinating history. We drive to the viewpoint south of town, then cross the stone bridge to walk down the broad, stone-paved main street known as the Stradun. It is the city's main thoroughfare, lined with graceful stone palazzi where people both work and live. Enter the city and visit the amazing courtyard of the Sponza Palace, known for its elaborate stone carvings. Explore the Franciscan monastery, as well as the impressive Rector's Palace and Church of St. Blaise
 Lunch: Visit a local family at their home for a light lunch snack to include two types of wine and snack to include local bread, local cheese, local smocked ham, olives, salad, crudites, dried figs and other dried fruit, almonds and nuts, water and different types of wine with visit to their home.
 Afternoon: The Konavle region is on the southernmost tip of Croatia, running from Cavtat south to the Montenegrin border. (see the map below) It includes the Konavle valley or Konavosko Range which is protected on the northeast by karstic mountains, the highest of which is Mt Snijeznica (1234m). Konavle is separated from the sea by a chain of lower hills. Most of the land is planted with vineyards and fruit trees.
 Dinner: Dinner onboard the ship.
   
Accommodations: Wind Surf
Meals Included: Breakfast, Lunch, Dinner

Day 9: Trogir and Split, Crotia
(Saturday, June 8)
   
 Breakfast: Breakfast onboard the ship.
 Morning: Trogir is a beautiful little town under the protection of UNESCO. It was built on the site of the former Greek settlement of Tragurion and abounds with historical monuments that testify to its centuries of rich cultural heritage. These treasures include the Cathedral with its famous portal, a masterpiece of the local artist Radovan, the City Loggia built in the 15th century, the palace of the Cipiko family, the Town Hall and finally the Benedictine Abbey from 1064, which houses a relief of the Greek god Kairos. Walk along the waterfront to South Town Gate to enter this ancient town dating back 4000 years. Visit St Lawrence Cathedral and walk to St Mark Fort to view the city's defenses built by the Venetians.
 Afternoon: The city of Split, one of the main ports for the country serves as a hub for the nearby islands and beyond. Here lies Diocletian?s Palace, a UNESCO World Heritage Site that was built as a retirement residence for the Roman emperor Diocletian, dating back to the 3rd century. Built as a villa, the palace is more like a city within a city. It features huge watchtowers, gates, private apartments, religious monuments and altars, all crafted in white limestone. At one time it housed as many as 9,000 people. The cobblestone streets and open spaces invite great learning opportunities. Explore the Diocletian Palace (UNESCO SITE), Peristyle Square, Cathedral St. Dominus, Temple of Jupiter, Golden Gate and Statue of Bishop Grgur. This field trip concludes with a local wine tasting.
 Dinner: Dinner onboard the ship.
   
Accommodations: Wind Surf
Meals Included: Breakfast, Dinner

Day 10: Rijeka, Opatija and Pula, Crotia
(Sunday, June 9)
   
 Breakfast: Breakfast onboard the ship.
 Morning: Opatija began as an upscale seaside resort for wealthy Croatians in the 19th century. Many of its heritage buildings and attractions were built as summer retreats for the rich in Rijeka, as well as for the Austrian Imperial family and nobility. Even the Emperor Franz Joseph used the town as his summer home.
 Lunch: Enjoy an olive oil tasting.
 Afternoon: The town centre of Istrian is dotted with Roman ruins, the most impressive of which is the spectacular Roman amphitheatre. Note also the 1st century Triumphal Arch of Sergius. Artists and architects from Michelangelo to Robert Adam studied and sketched this exceptionally well-preserved monument. In the centre of town is the Roman Forum containing the Temple of Augustus.
 Dinner: Dinner onboard the ship.
   
Accommodations: Wind Surf
Meals Included: Breakfast, Lunch, Dinner

Day 11: Departures
(Monday, June 10)
   
 Breakfast: Breakfast onboard the ship.
 Morning: Disembark the Wind Surfer and depart for the Venice airport (VCE).
   
Meals Included: Breakfast
Important information about your itinerary: Every effort has been made to ensure the accuracy and completeness of the information featured on this website. Itineraries are based on our best information at this time. Circumstances beyond our control may require us to adjust itineraries or other details. We regret any inconvenience this may cause and appreciate your understanding. Information will be sent to you from your Program Provider approximately three weeks prior to the program start date. The prices listed for commercial services and facilities that are not included in the program cost, such as airport shuttles or extra nights lodging, are subject to change without notice. Since Road Scholar cannot guarantee the accuracy of these prices, we strongly suggest contacting the companies directly for the most up-to-date information.


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