Tuscany stirs the heart and mind like nowhere else. It’s a feeling that can really only be satisfied by experiencing the history, art, culture and cuisine for yourself – and, if you do, it’s guaranteed to be the beginning of a lasting love affair.
The sunburnt patchwork of Tuscany’s landscape is defined by its scattering of fortified hill towns; the following five are often on the itinerary of the best small group holidays to the region. Each has a unique personality, but all are characterised by the beautifully preserved medieval architecture, warm-hearted locals and, of course, the unparalleled food and wine culture for which this region of Italy is so renowned.
Situated in the central province of Siena, Montalcino’s reputation for producing exceptional wines – including the world-acclaimed Italian red, Brunello – makes it a valuable addition to the itinerary of small group holidays with a focus on food and wine. It’s the perfect place to reacquaint or enjoy a first encounter with this superb wine at its source.
With far-reaching panoramic views over the countryside, the ancient streets and charming architecture of Montalcino reveal its history and culture in a very tangible way. For lovers of jazz, the annual Jazz & Wine Festival held in the town every July is another compelling reason to visit.
If you’re visiting Sydney as part of a tourist group in the near future, you may find that the best way to get your group around the city is on a bus hire. Sydney, like many other cities, is large and sprawling. Traffic can be confusing, especially to visitors who are unfamiliar with the city. A reliable bus charter service can make it easy for your group to get around for sightseeing and other purposes. Whether you’re bringing a group to the city for a day of sightseeing or traveling to the city as a group for a night on the town, a bus charter Sydney company can help you put together the best options for transport to and around the city. Here’s what you should know about hiring a bus charter company in Sydney.
Number of People
The number of people in your party will determine whether or not a coach charter is right for your group. If your group has more than five people, a mini bus charter or tour bus charter will probably be far easier for you than trying to commandeer multiple cabs to get from your hotel to other venues. For smaller groups, a minibus hire is often far less expensive than trying to get a large car from a car hire service. Most tour bus companies in Sydney can provide buses, mini buses and other types of transport that will be just the right size for the comfort of your group during transport.
Sydney is a lovely, historic city with many points of interest. One of the perks of hiring a bus from a well-known, reputable Sydney bus hire service is the knowledgeable tour bus driver. The best bus hire services in Sydney offer full tours of the city and its surroundings, so you’ll have the pleasure of being regaled with interesting facts about the sites around your route.
Let a Professional Drive
The most satisfying and resonant word in the Italian language could well be “mangiamo” – let’s eat! Certainly, when you hear the word while you’re visiting Tuscany you’ll know that you’re in for something special. Traditional Tuscan cuisine is loved the world over, with variations on the theme popping up in homes and restaurants all over the world, every day.
Learn How to Cook Like a Tuscan Local on Small Group Holidays
Experiencing the authentic local cuisine of a destination is one of the best ways of getting to know both the culture and the people. Learning the techniques, ingredients and skills to recreate it at home takes it to the next level. The beauty of small group holidays is the facility to tailor-make itineraries to suit particular interests and, for those visiting Tuscany, cookery lessons are definitely high on the agenda.
Pappa al Pomodoro and Ribolita are two classic staples from every Tuscan’s gastronomic repertoire, so where better to learn how to make them than right at the source? And taste testing the world-famous regional wines and cheeses is just the icing on the panettone!
Pappa al Pomodoro
This incredibly simple dish relies on the best quality ingredients to turn a simple tomato soup into an incredibly tasty experience. This versatile tomato, bread and garlic soup can be served either chilled, at room temperature or hot. Using the very best olive oil, basil and tomatoes and regulating the amount of garlic according to personal taste is key to recreating an authentic Pappa al Pomodoro. The addition of chunks of torn bread turns the idea of soup as a starter on its head and makes for a hearty main course dish.