Rome, the Eternal City, will always be at the top of most tourists’ list of places to visit in Italy, closely followed by the magnificent city of Florence and the wonders of Venice, but the south western region of Campania probably has the most to offer visitors – and in a relatively small area.
Just a two-hour drive south of Rome is Naples, the capital of the Campania region and third largest city in Italy. A vast and cosmopolitan metropolis, it is crammed full of a rich history and vibrant culture. The old centre of the city is a UNESCO World Heritage Site, awarded such title because it is one of the largest and best preserved ancient city centre sites in the world; and because of its 448 historical churches. The city boasts an enormous number of palaces, castles, museums and art galleries, the best of which is the Muzeo Nazionale di Capodimonte, which houses works by some of Italy’s grand masters such as Titian, Caravaggio and Bellini. The Museo Acheologico Nazionale is the world’s largest display of ancient Roman architecture, while the Piazza del Gesù and the Piazza San Domenico Maggiore is where one finds some of the best examples of stunning Baroque church architecture. No cultural stroll around Naples would be complete without a visit to the city’s famed opera house, the Teatro San Carlo, the Palazzo Reale or the Duomo. Naples is not all history and culture, as there are also modern shopping areas such as the stunning Galleria Umberto as well as many interesting markets, great restaurants and natural beauty to enjoy – especially along the Bay of Naples with Mount Vesuvius in the background.
We provide extraordinarily good walking tours, such as Authentic Italy, which lasts for a week and is available in April, May, June, July, September, October and November. Accommodation is provided at the four star La Facchio Hotel, which offers a choice of twin or double rooms and suites with en suite bathrooms – and stunning mountain views from every room. La Facchio Hotel accommodation offers excellent breakfasts, lunches and dinners when participants are not provided these meals on their walks. This tour is suitable for most people and is limited to twenty five participants. The itinerary includes tours of San Lorenzello with its marvellous Capo de Monte ceramics; Calvisi; Caserta with its magnificent Royal Palace; Telese, famed for its sulphur springs; and the San Pascale Monastery.
Participants walk up hills and down dales, through ancient villages and spectacular scenery of ancient olive trees, forests, lakes and mountains. All meals and snacks are provided on this tour, including gourmet picnics and a gala dinner.
Another great option is our Walk and Dine tour, which also last for seven days. Participants will attend restaurant quality Italian cookery lessons in a medieval castle on three afternoons, while the other three afternoons will be spent learning all about rustic cooking on a farm. Each evening participants will enjoy the meals they have prepared, together with the some of the great wines of the area. The guided walking tours take in the spa town of Telese and the San Pascale Monastery where you can meet and talk to the resident monks. Walks will go through meadows and forests and olive groves and vineyards for some spectacular views of the surrounding countryside. There will also be time to explore medieval villages and historic sites, as well as do some shopping.
The Campania region of south western Italy welcomes hundreds of thousands of tourists each year, who come to enjoy this area’s stunningly beautiful scenery, incredible history, magnificent architecture, world class art galleries and museums, amazing culture, a fine cuisine and international level shopping. The capital of this region is Naples, a fast and furious city of many faces which visitors either love or hate, but which is an absolute must see for the first time visitor to the area.
Campania has a great accommodation options. Choosing to stay in the countryside is an ideal way to see this region. Tourists may want to spend a few days in Naples and/or somewhere along the spectacular Amalfi coast and then move inland for a few days to enjoy the wonderful scenery, small towns and quaint villages, clean air and the slow pace of country life. Making use of a rural base is the best way to make the most of these excellent rural qualities – and to go on one of our wonderful walking tours. There are, of course, those tourists who prefer to stay completely away from the buzz of city life and spend their entire holiday walking or hiking to explore their area of choice.
Here’s a little background information to familiarize yourselves with this area: Telese is a pleasant town at the foot of Mount Pugliano. The sulphur springs of Telese Terme are found near Benevento in Campania in Southern Italy. The mountain’s slopes provide a sulhpur stream to feed the thermal baths in the area.
Thermal baths are an aspect of how the volcanic landscape benefits Italian experiences that can be had on holiday there, showing eager visitors that there is more to volcanic landscapes than fertile farmlands. Sulphur springs are relaxing and a great experience if you’re in Southern Italy they’re really is nothing like it at least not here in the UK.
The volcanic landscape also has other benefits like a rich soil perfect for growing the beautiful gardens in and around Telese. They really are spectacular. The whole area is very lush and really combines nature with more conventional activities. I find this quite amazing and be astounded by the natural beauty of Southern Italy whilst also benefiting from the luxuries of hot springs and garden walks.
What do you think when you think mountain? If it’s Mt. Everest then you’re a little far fetched from the mountains I’m talking about because they are much closer to home. I’m talking about the beautiful Italian mountains that provide a background to a beautiful landscape.
There’s something about mountains that awe us, maybe it’s the grandeur imposing on us. Something that wows us because natural beauty often does. Italy has an astonishing range of natural beauty perhaps less explored and enjoyed by the conventional tourist, but none the less still there waiting for you.
So maybe it’s time you walk away from the beaten track of mundane hotel holidays and explore a different side of Italy. The natural side.