Our friend Erica Jarman is a guide extradinaire for Tuscan locale. Please let her know if you choose on of her tours, that we sent you!
In case you were wondering, woad was the indigo of Renaissance Italy (and long before). A deep rich blue that speaks to the romance of ancient Italy. The color itself, in those days of old, came from a plant with a yellow flower that is transformed when cooked and processed by the dye maker. You will visit a small museum where such plants are grown and learn, firsthand how it is made to color the cloth. You will see where the woolen process first begins, with the shearing of the sheep, then taste the amazing cheeses that also are a product of these artisan family farms. The Casentino is a very special valley where some of the ancient traditions are kept alive on small acreages by the Italian people who honor and love their work. You will live among these gentle folk, in a monastery and a castle, witness their zeal for the nature they live in and taste their amazing products. In the regions of Tuscany, Umbria and Le Marche, you’ll dye with woad, visit the makers of Casentino wool, wine taste and cook a colored feast. Just a small group (maximum 10 people) for the purpose of comfort and ecology.
Per person: 3290 Euros
Single supplement: none (single room included in fee)
Claim your 5% loyalty discount if you've booked a small group tour with us before.
Friendly knowledgeable English-speaking guide throughout your stay
9 nights welcoming, relaxing accommodation, en suite bathrooms
Local ground transportation for 10 days (includes one group transfer between meeting point and accommodation and one return after the tour). Please check with us before you book your travel to make sure it fits the tour schedule. Transfers at times other than those provided for the group will be at your own expense.
Daily continental breakfast, 8 lunches with wine, 9 dinners with wine
Guided visits and workshops with artisans, entrance fees (except for optional activities)
Does not include
Travel and cancellation insurance (compulsory)
Wine and drinks other than those served with meals, additional meals
For more information: email@example.com
Itinerary at a glance (Sample)
Highlights of tour (Woad & Wool) Each tour will include different itineraries and experiences:
Arezzo to Lamoli di Borgo Pace
Day 1 — Meet at Arezzo train station, lunch, transfer to ex-monastery Oasi San Benedetto, Lamoli di Borgo Pace (Le Marche), welcome dinner
Day 2 — Dyeing workshop with woad, tour of dye museum; cook coloured meal for dinner
Day 3 — Lace-making and guided tour of Mercatello sul Metauro; lunch cooked by the Accademia del Padlot; visit Roman remains at Sant'Angelo in Vado
Lamoli to Caprese Michelangelo
Day 4 — Renaissance almond salad at archaeological arboretum; private tour of linen mill Tela Umbra a Mano at Città di Castello (Umbria); transfer to Agriturismo Terra di Michelangelo at Caprese Michelangelo (Tuscany)
Day 5 – Visit Anghiari, private tour of famed weaving mill Busatti; paintings of Piero della Francesca and visit herbal museum Aboca at Sansepolcro; learn to bake cantuccini(biscotti) at agriturismo
Caprese Michelangelo to Stia
Day 6 – Transfer to Castello di Porciano, Stia (Casentino); private tour of castle; lunch at Poppi; visit museum at Poppi castle; visit studio of woman who wove a blanket for the Pope; dinner at ancient water mill
Day 7 – Creative weaving workshop (suitable for total beginners; option for advanced weavers to do more challenging project) and tour of Museo della Lana (wool museum), Stia; visit Tessilnova Casentino woollen mill and shop (you can buy a coat like Audrey Hepburn's)
Day 8 — Learn to make cheese and the tortello di patate (potato-filled ravioli); lunch in cheesemaker's home; free time at Castello di Porciano
Day 9 — Tortello alla lastra (fried ravioli) lesson and lunch at cook's restaurant; sightseeing at Camaldoli mediaeval hermitage, monastery and herbal pharmacy
Stia to Arezzo
Day 10 – Transfer to Arezzo; visit art restoration studio; departure
For more details, please email firstname.lastname@example.org requesting information on this tour.
Fibre & textile experiences
Erica Jarman Following Heather’s careers as archaeologist, orchestra and artist manager and chef, she Italianised her name to Erica and came to Lucca to pursue her passion for traditional artisan food. Her tours, inspired by her infectious curiosity, open captivating new worlds to her guests.
Cheryl Alexander has been travelling to Europe, particularly Italy, for more than 20 years. Her interest in Italy, its history, art and rich culture led her to purchase property near Orvieto, allowing her to spend more time there. She has made many friends among the locals who live in the area and are generous in revealing the region’s hidden treasures to her. She shares these on the tours she offers from her company Italian Excursion. Her career as a social worker brings an understanding of people’s needs to the tour business, as does her more than 40 years experience in the field of wellness.