Private Heritage Tours of Calabria
Bilingual travel host throughout itinerary
All ground transportation with your group’s private driver
Abundant lunch with free-flowing wine daily
Welcome to Calabria dinner with free-flowing wine
Wine tours and tastings
Exclusive farewell to Calabria dinner, with free-flowing wine
Evening aperitivi EVERY NIGHT
Are you looking for a family, club, or private group heritage tour to Italy? My Bella Vita Travel, llc is the original Calabria heritage tour company, successfully executing hundreds of private heritage tours since 2007.
PLANNING, PREPARATION, PROGRAM, AND PROMISE
If you are traveling to Italy with a group of 8+ travelers, we can organize a private family, club, or group heritage tour to Italy. We will help you choose base cities, hammer out transportation details, book you with one of our expert heritage specialists, and accompany you throughout your trip.
And most importantly – your custom heritage tour will feature unique experiences you won’t find anywhere else.
We work with you or your preferred travel agent to plan all of the details of the land portion of your trip, offering destination recommendations, and route suggestions.
To explore your heritage, we will arrange special entrance into city archives, organize local meet-and-greets, and plan exclusive experiences that are related to your group’s Italian ancestry.
We organize all of your land transportation and airport transfers.
Your expert tour guides are booked and confirmed prior to your arrival and are waiting to show your group the best of Italy.
Your group leader will receive a link to the full itinerary and information packet to distribute to travelers. If requested, each of your group members is also invited to attend a live webinar with our team prior to the trip to discuss any questions or concerns and to gain a better understanding of the group’s itinerary.
Your group will be met at the airport by Cherrye Moore, owner of My Bella Vita Travel, LLC or by one of our personally selected, highly trained bilingual heritage specialists.
She will escort your group throughout the trip, offering you 24-hour access to a bilingual coordinator.
For larger groups, an assistant accompanies the tour, providing members 24-hour access to an additional bilingual escort and Italy expert.
Our team members live in both the US and southern Italy. We understand the importance of your heritage journey and love sharing your wins with you.
We have visited the main attractions many times and have contacts throughout the country offering even more localized recommendations for your group tour.
We know what this trip means to you. Many of our clients travel to Calabria searching for their family heritage and we understand the emotional impact this trip will have on you.
We promise you a truly customized, fully private tour. We won’t add other travelers to your excursions or encourage you to go where you don’t want to go.
Your tour will feature exclusive experiences. We created many of the experiences in our tours, so you won’t find them available anywhere else – and we love adding in fun surprises once you are in Italy.
SAMPLE 10-DAY GROUP HERITAGE TOUR
You will arrive at Lamezia Terme Airport where you will be met by Cherrye Moore, your Calabria travel host. You will drive north to your farmhouse hotel near Morano Calabro. After settling in, you will enjoy a leisurely walk through the village before feasting on a traditional Calabrese dinner, complete with live, local folk music.
After breakfast, we will set out for your heritage tour. You’ll visit the city hall, the local churches, and cemeteries, and will meet the people your heritage specialist met during his advanced research. We’ll detour to to one of our favorite trattorias in the region, where our friend, Cesare, and his mamma, will create the best meal you’ve ever had! Return to Morano and have the rest of the evening on your own.
We will have a light breakfast, then will push up our sleeves for a hands-on cooking class with Adriana, one of my oldest friends in Italy. We’ll feast on our creations before heading into the historical center for an afternoon passeggiata. Gelato optional.
This morning we will skip breakfast at the hotel and head out with our guide for a typical Calabrese breakfast in the piazza. You’ll choose to either stand barside – like the locals do – or you can grab a seat and people-watch from this historical bar.
Following breakfast, we will drive to one of our favorite vineyards in all of Italy. This boutique vineyard is owned by a pair of brothers who together with their mom and dad, bought a piece of land and a plow and set out to make some of the best Calabrian wine you’ll ever taste.
After the tour, one of the brothers will prepare lunch for us, a menu chosen particularly to go with their wines. In the early evening, we will return to the hotel for a rest. We’ll meet up in the evenings for a group passeggiata and aperitivo.
After breakfast we will check out of our hotel and will drive south to Pizzo Calabro. Along the way, we'll stop in Fiumefreddo Bruzio, an ancient hamlet in the province of Cosenza that sits perched on the cliffs overlooking the Tyrrhenian sea. Today, Fiumefreddo Bruzio has two parts: the ancient borgo and the more modern marina. The origins of Fiumefreddo Bruzio trace back to the Middle Ages and was probably chosen for the strategic and defensive possibilities it offers.
As you walk through the grand entrance that leads you into the old town, you are instantly greeted by the beauty and history of this hamlet. Fiumefreddo Bruzio doesn’t hesitate to embrace you with its beautiful noble residences, impressive churches, and piazzas with stunning views of the coastline,The town is one of "Italy's Most Beautiful Hamlets“ – and it’s easy to see why!
After a slow food lunch in town, we'll drive to the coast to Belmonte Calabro, where you'll visit a family-owned fig factory that dates to the early 1900s.
We'll arrive in Pizzo Calabro and check into our hotel in the center of town. You'll have the evening on your own.
This morning you will explore Pizzo Calabro! Your first stop is the intriguing Chiesetta di Piedigrotta cave church, a limestone cave with statues dedicated to Maria. Then, we'll hit the town for a seafood lunch at my friend Bruno’s, where his delicious food has him one of the “Top 30 chefs under 30 to watch." We’ll skip dessert, then head into the piazza for a behind-the-scenes look at how tartufo di Pizzo gelato truffles are made.
After an afternoon break for free time, we'll venture into the nearby hills for an evening wine tour and tasting at one of our favorite vineyards. This winery is known for high quality, organic wines that respect the territory's natural qualities and was listed in the NY Times as having one of the "Top 10 White Wines in the World." Try it for yourself, and let us know!
This morning we will check out of our hotel and head north towards Catanzaro, via an excursion to the fairy tale-like mountain village of Serra San Bruno. We will visit the enchanting pine tree forest, Saint Bruno’s charterhouse, and have you choice of a mountain picnic or mushroom feast. We will continue to Catanzaro where you will check into your hotel. Overnight in Catanzaro.
You will have a light breakfast, then set out for the “Green Heart of Calabria” – La Sila Mountains. There, you will visit a small, Alpine-like town that is home to 22 year-round residents and a guided visit to artist Mattia Pretti's hometown, the City of Art – Taverna.
You will feast with the Bianco family at their generations-old restaurant in the mountains, before walking through the park’s botanical gardens. We will return to Catanzaro. Overnight in Catanzaro.
You’ll skip the hotel breakfast today and visit our favorite bar in Catanzaro Lido, where you’ll meet the owner and have a private gelato-making lesson. After a breakfast of sweet brioche and gelato, you will visit the nearby ruins of Scolacium, Greek and Roman ruins that may have been discovered by Ulysses. You’ll tour the small, interesting olive mill museum and have a light lunch nearby. You’ll return to the hotel to rest and pack, then will meet up again for a private farewell antipasto and wine pairing send-off at a local wine bar. Overnight in Catanzaro.
Day 10: After breakfast, you will depart for Lamezia Terme airport and say arrivederci to bella Calabria!
Prices vary and are based on your group's size, customization, hotel choices, season of travel, and more. The sample tour above starts at $5,000.00, per person, based on double occupancy. Single supplements apply.
Accommodations and Transportation:
– 10 days, 9 nights in a double-occupancy room with private bath
– Group transportation throughout the itinerary
– Group transfers from Lamezia Terme Airport
– Breakfast daily in hotel
– Abundant lunch with free-flowing wine daily
– Multicourse Welcome dinner
– Surprise stops for aperitivi and cocktails various places throughout the tour
Group Excursions and Experiences
– Heritage Tour
– Visit to Serra San Bruno
– Excursion into La Sila National Park
– Wine tour and tasting near Pizzo Calabro
– Cooking Class
– Wine Tours
– Village Walks
– Fig Demonstration
** Abundant wine is included with all meals.
What Not Included
– Airfare / transportation to Calabria
– Transportation outside of group airport transfers
– Travel insurance, which is highly recommended. We can make recommendations.
– Shopping and personal expenses
– Meals not listed as ‘included’ in the itinerary
– Drinks or other cocktails not included in the itinerary
– All other expenses incurred during free time
Varies, based on your group's choices. Tours are a minimum of five days.