In Italy families delight in all aspects of food and enjoy convivial meals together. You and your children can experience these pleasures whilst staying on a farm or in a village and mixing with the locals. Pick wild blueberries, visit a beekeeper, make sausages and then barbecue them for dinner. We help you create a personal itinerary for your family from a few days to a week or longer, which can also include other leisure activities such as horse riding and swimming. (Suitable for children 6 years and above.)
There are loads of different activities at different seasons that can be enjoyed by the 'young at heart' of any age. Here's a sample:
- Cooking lessons with young Italian mammas — learn to make pasta by hand and lots of other traditional dishes that are easy to make with your children at home with the bonus of a healthy meal to enjoy with friends and family.
- Develop the confidence to improvise without a recipe using the ingredients you have to hand.
- Pick wild bilberries (blueberries) and make jam in August. Pick olives and make olive oil in October.
- Watch Renato make sausages and then BBQ them for dinner.
- Paint the mountain scenery, the wildflowers, the sunset.
- Mingle with Italian families at one of the many village festivals celebrating the food that makes them unique, for example, a type of crêpe made only in one village in the mountains or rosticciana and fagioli (the Garfagnana version of pork ribs and beans).
- Ride horses.
- Children organize a blind wine-tasting for their parents.
- Visit a beekeeper and watch her extract honey from the honeycomb — don't worry, the bees stay at home in the hive — and taste the different flavours of honey, such as acacia, wildflower and chestnut, on cheese and locally baked bread.
- Walk in the woods to see the Cinta Senese pigs and piglets.
- Put on a concert (we'll find out if anyone plays an instrument and suggest they bring it).
- Get off the ground in a woodland adventure park for children and adults (suspension bridges, rope ladders, and other exciting pathways connecting the tree trunks) and eat a picnic 'tasting' lunch of delicious local products.
- Get milk from the 'mechanical cow', a refrigerator that lives in a wooden hut and gives unpasteurized milk when you press the button. A local dairy farmer fills her up twice a day.
- Keep a journal — in words or pictures — so you can share your adventures with your friends at home.
Pick olives, take them to a modern olive press, watch them being crushed to produce olive oil and take home a bottle of your own...
Find out all about making cheese. Visit a cheesemaker, help her make goat's milk cheese and ricotta. Taste the fresh sweet curds and the mature...
Visit a beekeeper, help extract honey from the comb and taste the distinctive flavour of the different types of honey. Take home a jar of...