Wines From the Land of Romeo & Juliet

This is your opportunity to visit two of Italy’s great wine regions, Valpolicella and Soave, combining the elements of an exclusive deluxe, pre-cruise experience with the enjoyment and conviviality of traveling with a group of fellow wine lovers.

Food & Wine Trails has created a two-night pre-cruise experience that begins with a private car and driver from either the Venice International or Verona Municipal Airports to the beautiful Valpolicella wine region, known for producing Amarone, one of Italy’s biggest and most prestigious red wines. Accompanied for two days by our local wine expert and sommelier, you will also visit the wine region of Soave where some of Italy's finest white wines are now being produced.

Medieval Verona is situated an hour and a half west of Venice along the banks of the Adige River. Set in the nearby Verona countryside, your peaceful sanctuary for the next two nights will be the Villa Quaranta Tommasi Wine Hotel & Spa.

One of the most well-known tales of tragedy and romance set in Verona is William Shakespeare’s Romeo & Juliet. The story has touched so many hearts over the centuries that even today people come to Verona from all over the world to leave notes for Juliet, to see her balcony and to experience this beautifully intact medieval city.

Day 1 – Independent Arrival in Verona [D]

Upon arrival at the airport in Venice or Verona, you will enjoy the services of a private car and driver for your journey to the Villa Quaranta Tommasi Wine Hotel & Spa.
Surrounded by the Valpolicella countryside, the four-star hotel's grounds include a classically restored 17th century villa and Romanesque church. Included with the tour package is entrance to the Terme della Valpolicella Wellness Center and Thernarium Spa, including both indoor and outdoor pools, Finnish sauna, a cold cave, whirlpools, and Turkish baths.

That evening, join your local wine expert for a welcome dinner at the hotel's Cantina in Villa, where local specialties will be paired with the Tommasi Valpolicella and Amarone wines.

Day 2 – Discovering Valpolicella [B,L]

Enjoy breakfast served in the hotel’s restaurant before meeting your guide and departing for a full day in Valpolicella.

Your guide for both days is a long-time friend of Food & Wine Trails and a Veneto wine specialist. Canadian born, Tamara is a certified sommelier living in Venice, who when not hosting wine tasting groups is working with the designers and curators of Venice's famed La Biennale di Venezia.

Depart the hotel for a 20 minute drive to the Albino Armani estate. The estate's foundation dates back to 1962 in the Veneto region, but the Armani family's first vineyard was documented in 1607, when Domenico Armani inherited his father's property planted with "grapes and trees." Armani has estates in the Tri-Veneto area, the ancient lands of the Serenissima: Trentino, Friuli and Veneto. We will have a chance to taste his prosecco "sur lie" followed by a selection of the finest wines of their estates in Valpolicella Classico.

Depart the estate and drive a short distance in the beautiful Valpolicella countryside for a wine-paired luncheon at Trattoria Al Caprini Restaurant. This family-run trattoria continues to charm with mother, Pierina, kneading and rolling out ribbons upon ribbons of light fresh pasta every day. Sons Sergio and Davide help in front of house and kitchen. The menu will consist of local specialties with a selection of hard-to-find, local Valpolicellas and Amarones.

After lunch, you will return to the hotel and are free to go into Verona and explore on your own, or just indulge yourself with a treatment at the hotel's spa. Dinner this evening is on your own.

Day 3 – Soave & Transfer to the Ship [B,L]

Check-out of your room and then enjoy breakfast in the hotel’s restaurant. Meet Tamara in the lobby with your luggage and board the motor coach.

Depart the Villa Quaranta and drive approximately one hour to the Soave wine region and the small Veneto comune of the same name. The inhabitants of Soave were protected by an impressive medieval castle that was built by the Scala family in the 13th century - yes, the same Scala family that gives the name to the opera house in Milan. Our winery visit and tasting is a short distance away at Suavia Winery. Owned by the Tessari Family, the winery's name alludes to the pre modern-day references to Soave. The Tessari's have been farming the native Garganega and Trebbiano di Soave white varietal sin the volcanic hills of Soave Classico since the late 1800's, founding their modern winery in 1990. Tamara will guide you through an informative tour and tasting of their wines.

Lunch today will be served in the shadow of the Soave castle at the near-by Ristorante Al Gambero. After lunch, depart the winery for the 1-1/2 hour drive from Soave to the port of Venice, where you will board the ship in the late afternoon.

Registration Form

Download Optional Pre-Cruise Program Registration Form

PRICE PER PERSON: $1,265 Per Person Single Supplement: $235

TOUR INCLUDES: Private car and driver transfer from the Venice or Verona Airport, a local sommelier guide, one wine-paired welcome dinner, two nights' accommodation in a Deluxe room, two buffet breakfasts, two winery tours and tastings, two lunches with wine, group transfer by motor coach to the pier in Venice, porterage and most local taxes.

NOT INCLUDED: Driver and guide gratuities, additional fees incurred for Venice private car and driver due to delayed flight arrival, meals and beverage not included in package description, local city accommodation tax, and all items of a personal nature.

ACTIVITY LEVEL: Extensive walking, at times over uneven surfaces.

NOTE: Times and providers are subject to change.

TRAVEL INSURANCE: F&WT highly encourages protecting your travel investment in case of an emergency requiring you to cancel your trip. Your F&WT's Travel Advisor can assist you with procuring the appropriate coverage. Please make sure to read the cancellation policy on the registration form outlining our cancellation policy.

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