Rome and Latium’s countryside

Unique in the world, Rome is a city of layers…stratified history….grand monuments and public spaces that solemnly walk us through the splendour of bygone centuries. From its founding in 753 B.C., it went on to become caput mundi for nine centuries, spreading its wings far and wide. A city that has never stopped evolving…. The famous shopping street of Via Condotti, the Spanish Steps, the city palaces and magnificent parklands, like Villa Borghese, with its unique art collection, reflect layers of time, centuries of evolution and history. And now a new cultural wave is also set to leave its mark with a brand-new museum of contemporary art, Maxxi, designed by Zaha Hadid; a contemporary art space, Macro; a Richard Meiers-designed modernist enclosure to house the Augustan altar of peace; and a music and culture auditorium by Renzo Piano. He named his creation ‘a factory of culture’…which is what Rome is all about!

But just like in William Wyler’s movie ‘Roman Holiday’ with Audrey Hepburn, leave behind the grandeur of Rome  for a beautiful place in the countryside. Travelling just an hour south of Rome, we reach Ciociaria in southern Latium. The rugged beauty of its landscapes and long-held cultural traditions have also been a favourite amongst many acclaimed writers. It is here that writers, like Pier Paolo Pasolini, Alberto Moravia, Elsa Morante and many others found inspiration. In close proximity, we find the Abbey of Monte Cassino, the picturesque coastal village of Sperlonga, the ruins of a Roman villa that once belonged to Roman Emperor Tiberius, as well as many other places of interest.

A place of timeless beauty

The  Ciociaria Food & Culture Getaway runs for eight days and it has the perfect balance of art, great food, cooking classes, and  exciting excursions.

Discover  Latium’s beautiful countryside, only a  100kms south of Rome.  Every day will be filled with rewarding experiences; you’ll get to meet small family-run producers, learn how to cook Italian mouth-watering dishes, walk on golden sand at the coastal village of Sperlonga and much more! The boutique-style accommodation, with its  beautiful ensuites in rustic decor, is owned and managed by a local family.  Once you arrive at your destination, you’ll be pampered by unmatched hospitality.

On your way back to Rome be sure to toss a coin in the Trevi Fountain, legend says that this way, one day, you will be back. Rome is a city to be re-visited again and again. This is a perfect holiday if you are after an off-the-beaten track experience. You’ll find further details in the day -by day-  itinerary.



Welcome to Rome

Discover  one of the world’s seven wonders, the Colosseum by joining a walking guided tour with one of Rome’s top archaeologist and historians.  The monument was inaugurated in 80 A.D., if we close our eyes we can imagine the thrill, noise, and excitement of the 50,000 spectators as they watched the gladiators battle for life over death.

After go for a stroll in the Campo de’ Fiori area, have lunch at one of the local trattorias and don’t miss the statue of philosopher Giordano Bruno,  who had the misfortune of being burnt at the stake in medieval times.



Rome and Castro dei Volsci

Farewell Rome and head 100kms south towards Castro dei Volsci in the beautiful area known as Ciociaria. After a light lunch and a relaxing siesta, we explore Castro’s historical centre and the Church of St. Nicholas, one of the first Benedectine monastaries founded by the Abbey of Montecassino in the VI century. It contains well- preserved frescoes of Latium origin that draw inspiration from Old and New Testament themes.

In the evening we regroup for a delicious meal in the nearby village of Arnara, famous for its meat dishes and vegetarian cuisine.



Fossanova Abbey, Olive groves and cooking class

Our day starts with a visit to the Abbey of Fossanova. Dating back to 1163, it’s a perfect example of Cistercian architecture, with a beautiful church and soul soothing cloisters. We then stop at a locally owned olive grove in Sonnino to experience the art of olive oil processing, followed by some fabulous tastings. A light lunch is served in the alfresco area adjacent to the olive grove.

Once back at the Inn, soak up the atmosphere by going for a peaceful walk or experience Il Dolce Far Niente – The Sweetness of Doing Nothing and be in the moment.   Thanks to our chef-instructor we learn how to make traditional Italian fresh pasta, like fettuccine, maltagliati and light-as- feather gnocchi. At dinner taste different shapes of pasta bathed in our home-made succulent sauces and be amazed by your own creations!


Amaseno mountains and a goat farm

After an energising breakfast, we travel to the Amaseno mountains, to get an authentic taste of what mountain living is all about. We meet a farmer who owns and runs a goat farm. Be captivated by his insights on the-day-to day process that is required to produce out of this world cheese products, as well as the care that goes into rearing grazing animals. Soon after get ready for a scrumptious picnic with some of the region’s best local produce….organic bread loaves, fresh cheese, olives and juicy sausages..simply divine!

Later in the afternoon, after a peaceful siesta, if you like you can sign up for a workshop on the making of ancient Roman Jewelery. In the evening we head to town for a pizza night.


The coastal village of Sperlonga and the Emperor’s villa

Today we travel to the coastal village of Sperlonga, a favourite spot with travellers from both Rome and Naples as it is half way between these two cities. With its whitewashed buildings, a pedestrian-only labyrinth of arched alleys and stairways overlooking the cobalt sea, Sperlonga can easily be mistaken for a Greek village. Walking south we reach the ruins of a Roman villa. It belonged to Roman Emperor Tiberius, who reigned from 14 A.D. to 37 A.D. He’d come here to enjoy the summer breeze before heading off to the island of Capri. In the villa’s museum we can still admire the well-preserved sculptures that depict the characters from Homer’s Odyssey. They once adorned the grotto where the banquets took place. We soak up the beauty of this seaside haven at one of Sperlonga’s best restaurants.

In the afternoon learn how to make traditional biscotti and pies that Italian Mamas are famous for. This evening dinner is at one of our favourite restaurants in the village of Castro dei Volsci.


Caves of Pastena

Today we are in for an amazing tour of the carsian caves in Pastena, going back to the Paleolithic era, they once provided a place of shelter for those who lived in the nearby area. Thanks to an internal lighting system and suitable paving, the walk is an open window into what life must have been like with few of our modern-age comforts! We then head off to a lovely village where we’ll visit a local artisan who excels in producing prosciutto. A light lunch will give us enough energy for the rest of the day.

No Food & Culture Getaway would be complete without a masterclass on the secrets of making fresh pasta. Thanks to our chef-instructor we learn how to make traditional Italian pasta, like fettuccine, maltagliati and light as feather gnocchi. Once dinner time rolls in, taste different shapes of pasta bathed in our home-made succulent sauces..Mangia…mangia comes easy!


Wine Tastings and culinary treats

Today’s adventure take us to a wine estate in the Piglio area. Brunch and wine tasting will be served in the vineyard’s cellar. Once back at the Inn, soak up the atmosphere by going for a peaceful walk or experience Il Dolce Far Niente – The Sweetness of Doing Nothing and be in the moment. In the afternoon, you get active with a cooking class dedicated to pastry making, it’s time to learn how to make traditional biscotti and pies that Italian Mammas are famous for. This evening’s dinner will be extra-special as we near the end of our ‘Roman Holiday’ Tour. Great food and wine will be served at a restaurant where the Slow Food philosophy reigns! With gluten-free and vegetarian dishes also included in their delicious menu.


Time to say farewell

This morning, transfer to Fiumicino airport for your onward flights or travel. Transfers are included in the tour cost.

Ciociaria Food & Culture

Location: Rome and Latium
Date: From April to January
Length: 7 nights/8 days
Accommodation: Boutique style, twin share
Single supplement:  $485
Price:  $4,950


  • 7 night accommodation in twin share
  • 8 breakfasts
  • 6 x evening meals
  • 6 x lunches
  • Cooking classes  in English
  • Wine, cheese and olive oil tastings
  • Cultural visits (abbeys, archaeological sites, museums)
  • Mini-coach transfer to and from  Fiumicino airport


  • A walking tour in Rome with the best guides
  • Experience life in the countryside
  • Seafood lunch at the coastal town of Sperlonga
  • Emperor Tiberius’ Roman villa and museum
  • Cooking classes, wine tastings & visits to local producers
  • Enjoy the best seasonal food from local farmers


The Roman Holiday Getaway can be custom designed. Private retreats for specialized groups or tailor made programs can be arranged with advanced notice. Contact us for further information and pricing.

” The people were amazing! So friendly and helpful. There is so much to see and to do. The experience of meeting the people and the learning about the village culture was amazing”.
― Barbara and Michael, Australia
Rome is a human city where it isn’t important who you are or what you do…..Communication is sincere”
― Carl Pickering, architect, Australia
” The accommodations were absolutely gorgeous. It could only have been better if we had stayed longer”.
― Carri Rice and Wendy Malone, USA
Here the most ordinary person becomes somebody. Everywhere else ones starts from the outside and works inward; in Rome it seems to be the other way round.
― Goethe