Tours & Study Days With
James Hill

James Hill is our long-standing Italian, US and Caribbean tours director. British born, he has been resident in Italy for over 25 years where he studied politics. An authority on travel and culture in Italy, he now lives near Lake Como and has a background in travel writing and television production where he worked on around sixty cultural programmes and documentaries on Italy.

Image above: Turin, La Venaria

connoisseurs' rome

behind closed doors

Italy
Tuesday 6 - Sunday 11 April 2021 (6 Days)
This is a remarkable opportunity to explore a Rome normally concealed behind closed doors. From our hotel located directly next to the Pantheon. you will be taken to visit the city's most important palaces and art collections. There will be an evening private visit to the Vatican Museums and Sistine Chapel, and many lesser-known jewels in the city. There is no other visit to Rome of this quality.

Private Gardens of Eastern Sicily

earth, fire, air & water

Italy
Friday 16 - Wednesday 21 April 2021 (6 Days)
Fiery Etna has enriched its fertile slopes to create a unique botanical mix of exotic plants, amazing flowers and varied crops along the Ionian Sea-facing coast of Eastern Sicily. Based in lovely Taormina, we shall visit privately the most notable town and country gardens of the region, complemented with many owner-hosted lunches - Sicilian bliss!

Connoisseurs’ venice

Patricians & Painters

Italy
Sunday 25 - Friday 30 April 2021 (6 Days)
Be you a novice or seasoned visitor to Venice, we offer a privileged introduction to this magical city: palaces that are not open to the public; St Mark’s and its mosaics, seen privately at night; magical Torcello, “a positive ecstasy of melancholia” as Jan Morris described it; art galleries for the connoisseur – all seen at a time when the city is at its most quiet and serene.

Exploring Albania

Contrasting Cultures

Albania
Monday 3 - Monday 10 May 2021 (8 Days)
Undiscovered for decades, Albania is perfectly located between Greece and Italy. At the edge of the Balkan Peninsula, its complex history is furrowed into its landscape and weighs heavily on its shoulders. Given the resilience of its people and its engaging cultural heritage there is much to discover – evocative Greek and Roman sites, fine Byzantine churches and handsome Ottoman period houses, all set within dramatic scenery.

Genoa & the Italian Riviera

Princes, Painters & Sea Merchants

Italy
Monday 24 - Saturday 29 May 2021 (6 Days)
Genoa, its wealth built on sea-trade, has a remarkable selection of magnificent private palaces, richly decorated churches, all sited in public spaces of elegant dignity. Rubens and Van Dyck both lived here, hinting at the trading links between Genoa and Antwerp. There are also a surprising number of stunning gardens, such as the Abbazia La Cervara near Portofino and the wonderful Hanbury Garden at La Mortola

discovering slovenia

a hidden europe

Slovenia
Monday 7 - Sunday 13 June 2021 (7 Days)
Slovenia has truly come of age! It is a small nation of unspoilt beauty, superb food and wine with one of the most handsome capitals in central Europe - Ljubljana. Over the course of a week we shall explore many of the country’s most atmospheric places from the ‘mini-Venice’ at coastal Piran to handsome Lake Bled, and from medieval Ptuj to the elegant buildings of Ljubljana.

TRENTINO-ALTO ADIGE

ALPINE PASTURES

Italy
Thursday 17 - Wednesday 23 June 2021 (7 Days)
The cultural and historical journey of Trentino-Alto Adige, also known as Trentino-South Tyrol, is as dramatic as its majestic alpine scenery is stunning. This ‘undiscovered’ valley in Northern Italy is also bejewelled with two very handsome though visually diverse towns - Trento and Bolzano - where we shall enjoy our late summer visit cradled in verdant alpine splendour.

verona & the valpolicella

villas, gardens, operas & wine

Italy
Tuesday 13 - Sunday 18 July 2021 (6 Days)
A warm July evening in Verona’s Roman great amphitheatre, enveloped by opera is always memorable. Equally, our visit will embrace the summer delights of the country villas and gardens of the Valpolicella wine region and nearby Lake Garda, all tantalisingly close to the civic magnificence of one of northern Italy’s most delightful cities, Verona.

Visiting Normandy

Medieval Might to Monet

France
Saturday 21 - Friday 27 August 2021 (7 Days)
The verdant landscapes of Normandy are an oasis of peace and tranquillity, masking a history full of incident. Its rural semi-obscurity attracted some of the finest painters of nineteenth century France, the precursors to and creators of Impressionism, above all Claude Monet.

Villas & Gardens on Como & Lugano

Lakeside Idyll

Italy
Tuesday 21 - Monday 27 September 2021 (7 Days)
Combine Alpine peaks with cool lake water, garlanded with stunning noble lakeside villas and exquisite gardens and what comes to mind – the Italian lakes? Our tour of Lakes Como and Lugano includes not only some of the best known villas and gardens but most are completely new to our itineraries and three of these are quite exceptional private visits.

Rhode Island’s Gilded mansions

Dazzling Impressions

USA
Wednesday 29 September - Wednesday 6 October 2021 (8 Days)
Piety and property were the driving forces behind the history of Newport, Rhode Island. Enjoy the astonishing Gilded Age mansions built by the Puritans who settled there, as well as visits to Colonial houses & art collections in nearby Connecticut at Yale University.

Sicily Ancient & Modern

Complex Crossroads

Italy
Tuesday 12 - Thursday 21 October 2021 (10 Days)
Sicily has been a strategic prize fought over for millennia by competing cultures, all attracted by its location and natural resources. Their marks have been left via amazing Greek temples, Roman villas, Norman churches and mosaics and baroque palaces - all complemented by the excellent cuisine and wines.

Turin & the House of Savoy

Elegance Personified

Italy
Tuesday 30 November - Saturday 4 December 2021 (5 Days)
The House of Savoy was one of the most celebrated and well-connected dynasties in Europe. Turin, its capital, was upgraded in the seventeenth and eighteenth centuries to reflect its new status as a kingdom and power broker in the diplomatic affairs of Europe. Turin just before Christmas is a most handsome city. Masterpieces of fine art and architecture in both the urban palaces and country hunting villas of the Savoy family we will visit will be complemented by superb food and wine during our festive few days.
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Tours & Study Days