…You pull the leather strap of a two-centuries-old truffle bag across your chest and step into the mist-filled Umbrian forest.
Emma, a truffle-foraging canine, is running energetically ahead. The farmer’s throaty Italian commands to her are muffled by the birdsong overhead and the rustle of leaves underfoot as Emma scratches furiously beneath a tree. She has smelled the day’s first truffle.
The morning slips by. At one point, you hear a holler and turn to see a smiling, rotund farmer standing at a fence, gesturing to you. He has his vino nuovo, or new wine of the season, in a glass fishball in his lean-to up the hill, and he wants to share it. That is how you find yourself sipping red wine out of plastic Dixie cups within a circle of complete strangers at 9:15 in the morning in the Umbrian woods.
By noon, your bag is full so you head back to the farmhouse. The weight of this morning’s booty will fetch more than $1000. While you won’t take it back to the US, you will cook with some of it!
With a quarry that dates back to the Renaissance, a wine that dates to Dante, and roads that date to the Etruscans, the storied areas of 5 Lands, or Cinque Terre, is maybe my favorite of the whole county. Don’t be discouraged by stories of crushing crowds, because I can get you out of that mayhem and into spots that you’ll have all to yourself for paddling, hiking, wine-tasting, (night) fishing, sailing – and dining on the local bounty straight from the sea.
Or imagine a different area of Italy, the Italian Riviera coast. Crawl through the fence to soak in the natural hot springs – you might be the only non-local there!
Or imagine a different coast – splashy Amalfi! Enjoy a private flat or a boutique hotel that was originally built by Napoleon for his brother-in-law. Savor candle-lit meals on terraces, cantilevered over the sea. Visit a family-run winery, deep in the cleft of the hills, or take a cooking class – in this touristed area, both of these guides speak only Italian so you’ll know you have found the “real” Italy.
And top off your stay on a daytrip to Capri! And while others cram the touristy town, you will set off with a local captain in his restored classic boat to explore the pretty coast and mysterious caves, with a homemade lunch on board handmade by the captain’s madre.
At Rare Finds, we are committed to pulling you out of the sluice of mainstream travel in over-touristed Italy, and into more unique experiences that you can really savor.
We realize these may be important to you also, so we have all the tricks and tools to set you up with VIP days and skip-the-line expedited entry.
We know the hours to go (and the ones to avoid), the outfitters who offer the best experiences, and the best routing to tie it all together.
…or sitting down to a dinner party in the home of a local Cesarine…
…or soaking in the serenade of an opera singer in your private gondola with only a occasional drip of the gondolier’s paddle to break to notes which hang suspended in the silent air, balanced between Venice’s storied canal walls…
…you will be on a one-of-a-kind adventure through Old World Italy that you will not soon forget.
What’s it like being a client of Rare Finds Travel?
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“(Our guide) took us up on this one rooftop which
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Go on a Rare Finds’ scavenger hunt around Rome to discover a different gelato shop every day!
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