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19-29 September 2009
About this Tour
In the glow of twilight, steep rocky mountains sparkle like jewels, with buildings clinging to their slopes and cascading down to the sea. At their feet, the azure blue water of the Mediterranean laps softly against the shoreline. It is unmistakably the Amalfi Coast, a fabled playground of enchanting storybook villages, majestic sea views, and an intoxicating cuisine, including famous local specialties like buffalo mozzarella, San Marzano tomatoes, and some of the freshest seafood in Italy.
What better way to discover the culinary secrets of this famous part of the Campania region of Italy than with Mary Ann Esposito, host of the longest running Italian cooking show on public television, Ciao Italia, now entering its twentieth season. Mary Ann will travel with the group through the entire tour and conduct two hands-on cooking lessons in which she'll help you to prepare some of her favorite regional recipes. Her husband, wine expert Guy Esposito, will also provide an ongoing course on the wines of Campania as we travel through the region.
We'll spend four nights in the captivating waterfront town of Amalfi, a perfect base for exploring the beautiful coastline and the renowned towns of Ravello and Positano, as well as for visits to the best producers of local food specialties like buffalo mozzarella. Then we're off for four magical nights on enchanting Capri island, including a visit to wonderful Sorrento and the famous Pompei archeological site. Don't miss this extraordinary opportunity to travel, cook with and get to know Mary Ann as we explore the wonders of the Amalfi Coast!
About Your Host
This is our seventh annual tour with Mary Ann Esposito, host of the longest running cooking show on television, Ciao Italia. For 20 years, since its debut in 1989, Mary Ann has brought her knowledge and passion for Italian food and culture to 1.4 million weekly viewers nationwide on more than 230 PBS public television stations. She is the author of ten best-selling cookbooks, including her most recent, Ciao Italia Slow and Easy, published by St. Martin's Press. Mary Ann has appeared nationally on NBC's The Today Show, Regis & Kelly, Discovery Channel's Home Matters, Lifetime's Our Home, the Food Network and numerous commercial and public television stations across the country. She has been featured in USA Today, Family Circle, TV Guide, Quarterly Review of Wines and many metropolitan newspapers.
Four Star Accommodations
AMALFI Hotel Luna Convento
The Hotel Luna Convento was originally a 9th century convent, and St. Francis himself founded the 13th century cloister, spending many hours meditating among the fragrant lemon trees. The Barbaro family still owns the structure, converted to a hotel many years ago, and it continues to have a reputation for warm hospitality. The Luna's guest rooms have hosted many famous personalities, including Wagner, Ibsen, Bergman & Rossellini, Bogart, and many others. Common facilities include the lovely cloister, two restaurants, an American bar, swimming pool, solarium and sundeck.
CAPRI Hotel Luna
Located at the edge of Capri town center a few minutes walk from the renowned "piazzetta", the Hotel Luna overlooks the 14th-century Certosa of San Giacomo monastery and the Mediterranean Sea. Rooms and suites are smartly decorated, some with private terraces. Common facilities include a lovely garden with pergola through which guests enter the hotel, a large terrace-solarium with an outstanding view of the Faraglioni rock formations just past the tip of the island, a swimming pool with adjacent restaurant, and an American bar with outside seating areas.
FIUMICINO Marriott Courtyard Fiumicino
The newest of the hotels in the Rome airport area, the Marriott Courtyard offers comfortable modern rooms, a library, two restaurant and a wine bar, as well as a pleasant outdoor pool open during summer months. While the hotel is located just 15 minutes from the airport, it's also an easy walk to the adjacent town center of Fiumicino, which has numerous restaurants, trattorias and shops.
Sat 19 Sept: Departing flight from North America (air transportation not included).
Sun 20 Sept: Arrival at Naples Capodichino airport and hello to your tour director!
Private transfer from the airport to the Hotel Luna Convento in Amalfi.
Free time to unpack, shower and change. Free afternoon to relax.
Evening meet Mary Ann Esposito and brief stroll through Amalfi with your tour director.
Welcome dinner at a local restaurant in Amalfi (included).
Mon 21 Sept: Morning guided walking tour of Amalfi and Atrani with our Amalfi Coast guide.
Free time for light lunch and break after lunch for relax time at the hotel.
Late afternoon guided walking tour of Ravello with our Amalfi Coast guide.
Dinner at a local restaurant in Ravello (included).
Return to Amalfi after dinner.
Tue 22 Sept: Morning visit to the Tenuta Vanullo buffalo mozzarella facility south of Salerno. Lunch at a local agriturismo in San Cipriano, near Salerno (included).
Afternoon visit to a local producer of San Marzano tomatoes in the Sarno area.
End of the day return to Amalfi and free evening for dinner on your own.
Wed 23 Sept: Morning free time in Amalfi. Mid-morning Cooking Lesson n.1 with Mary Ann followed by lunch in Amalfi (included).
Late afternoon visit to Positano and stroll through town with your tour director.
Free evening for dinner on your own in Positano. Return to Amalfi after dinner.
Thu 24 Sept: Mid-morning check out of the hotel. Winery tour and winetastings at the award-winning Gran Furor winery in Furore. Lunch at a local trattoria (included).
After lunch departure for Sorrento port. Hydrofoil from Sorrento to Capri and arrival at the Hotel Luna.
Free evening for dinner on your own in Capri.
Fri 25 Sept: Morning guided walking tour of Capri town with our Capri guide.
Free time for lunch in Capri town. Afternoon walking tour of Anacapri with our Capri guide.
Dinner at a local restaurant in Capri (included)
Sat 26 Sept: Morning hydrofoil to Sorrento. Cooking Lesson n.2 with Mary Ann followed by lunch in Sorrento (included).
After lunch guided walking tour of Sorrento and visit to a local lemon grove for a homemade limoncello making demonstration.
End of the day hydrofoil return to Capri and free evening for dinner on your own.
Sun 27 Sept: Free Day on Capri island.
Farewell dinner at a local restaurant (included).
Mon 28 Sept: Morning check out of the hotel and hydrofoil from Capri to Naples port.
Departure for Fiumicino, with en route guided tour of the Pompei archeological site.
Late afternoon arrival in Fiumicino at the Marriott Courtyard. Free evening.
Tue 29 Sept: Private transfer from the hotel to Rome Fiumicino airport.
Goodbye to your tour director and return flight to North America.
The Amalfi Coast with Mary Ann Esposito 2009 tour pricing includes:
All accommodations as listed, double occupancy rooms
All breakfasts (buffet)
All ground transportation in luxury minibus with commercially licensed driver
Arrival airport transfer from Naples Capodichino (NAP) airport to Amalfi hotel
Departure airport transfer from Fiumicino hotel to Rome Fiumicino (FCO) airport
Public hydrofoil transfers to and from Capri island
Ciao Italia host Mary Ann Esposito to accompany the group for the entire tour
Our professionally licensed tour director at disposition for the entire tour
Our professionally licensed local tour guides for walking tours as follows:
- Amalfi-Ravello (full day), Capri-Anacapri (full day), Sorrento and Pompei
Two hands-on cooking lessons with Mary Ann Esposito
Four full-course dinners (including beverages & wine) as follows:
- Four dinners at local restaurants/trattorias in Amalfi, Ravello and Capri (2)
Four full-course lunches (including beverages & wine) as follows:
- Two lunches at local trattorias in Furore and San Cipriano
- Two lunches following the two cooking lessons
Winery tour with winetastings at the Gran Furor Marisa Cuomo winery in Furore
All museum and site entry fees during guided tours
All gratuities for guides and drivers, all porterage, and all taxes
Tour pricing is land only and does not include:
- Air transportation
- Lunches or dinners except those listed as included
- Gratuity for your tour director
- Personal items such as laundry, beverages in hotel rooms, or telephone
The Amalfi Coast with Mary Ann Esposito $ 5,560 per person land
Departure 19SEP/ Arrival in Naples 20SEP
Return from Rome 29SEP
Reservation deposit of $500 per person is required
Final payment is due 60 days prior to departure
Single supplement is $940 (double room for single use)
Enrollment is limited to 16 persons