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Golden Week in Southern Italy & Amalfi Coast - For Women Only
time 9 Days / 7 Nights

Sorrento (7 nights)

Exclusive Small Group Tour Led by Author Susan Van Allen —14 guests maximum

Join Susan Van Allen, author of 100 Places in Italy Every Woman Should Go, for an inspiring adventure in southern Italy, where the elegant soul of Bell'Italia bursts forth, with the sparkling Mediterranean Sea as a backdrop. From our base in the dreamy town of Sorrento, you’ll discover marvels of Capri, vibrant Naples, the fascinating ancient ruins of Pompeii, blissful thermal springs of Ischia and the amazing Amalfi Coast. We’ll shop for artisan treasures, toast with robust local wine, and enjoy delicious, world-famous cuisine.

This is a Gift of La Dolce Vita=the Sweet Life, custom-designed and led by Susan so that women can fully experience Italy's rejuvenating pleasures.

inclusionAt a Glance
  • Saturday - Depart USA - Andiamo!
  • Sunday - Welcome to Your Golden Week
  • Monday - Taste Campania
  • Tuesday - Follow Your Bliss on the Island of Ischia
  • Wednesday - Discover Bella Napoli
  • Thursday - Explore Pompeii in the Morning, Positano at Sunset
  • Friday - Discover Capri
  • Saturday - Ravello, Amalfi…and Farewell
  • Sunday - Arrivederci!
dates Itinerary
Click on the plus sign for full day description.

Board your overnight flight and you're off to your exciting Golden Week in Southern Italy! 
*Flights are not included in the price of this package.  We are happy to arrange them for you.

Benvenuta! You’ll be met by our driver at the Naples airport or train station, then transported along a dreamy route to your home for the week: the First-class Hotel Imperial Tramontano in Sorrento. The view of the Bay of Naples and Mount Vesuvius from here is breathtaking, and you’ll have time to ooh-and-ahh, relax, enjoy the pool, and perhaps explore the vibrant historic center, a short walk away.

In the evening, we’ll gather for an aperitivo to toast the week ahead. You will receive tips about keeping a travel journal, so you can create a treasured souvenir of your week through journaling. We’ll dine at the hotel’s restaurant, enjoying the view of the stars sparkling over the sea and a menu that celebrates the season's finest ingredients.

Meals Included: D

Wake up and smell the caffe. A delicious, abundant breakfast awaits you in the hotel dining room. Get used to enjoying this elegant start to all your Sorrento days.
Then we’re off to a nearby family villa, where a local signora will lead us in a cooking class–a chance to immerse ourselves in the region of Campania’s extraordinary flavors, including classic Gnocchi alla Sorrentina. Lunch, enjoying the fruits of our labors, will follow, along with time to enjoy the gardens of this lovely property.
We’ll be back at the hotel by mid-afternoon, so you may enjoy the pool, the beach, or a leisurely stroll, before dinner on your own, with Susan’s recommendations. Choices nearby range from cozy pizzerias to chic upscale restaurants.

Meals Included: B, L

Spa in Latin stands for, Salas Per Aqum=Health through Water. We’ll do as the Greeks and Romans did: immerse ourselves in the curative waters of Ischia that have been rejuvenating visitors since ancient times. A ferry ride takes us to the lush, volcanic island, that’s famed for its thermal springs. We’ll head to Poseidon Park, where we’ll soak in warm pools, steam in the Roman sauna, relax under umbrellas at the private beach. There will be time for optional spa treatments, or you may wish to simply bliss out amidst fragrant gardens, staring out into the sparkling Mediterranean Sea.

Back in Sorrento, there’s an optional journal writing workshop in the early evening. Then those who would like to have a Dutch Treat group dinner, may follow Susan on a walk to Sorrento’s Marina Grande, to enjoy the folksy scene and a meal of fresh caught seafood.

Meals Included: B

Our day in Bella Napoli is an inspiring mix of rich history, artisan shopping, and wonderful food. We’ll ferry over there from Sorrento, meet our entertaining local guide, and stop in to the Naples Archaeological Museum, for a look at how women have been glorified in art since ancient days–from sculptures of goddesses to stunning mosaics. Next we’ll have lunch at a traditional pizzeria, indulging in what’s considered The Best Pizza in The World! In Spaccanapoli, the evocative historic center, we’ll visit the enchanting Cloisters of Santa Chiara, a wonderland from Naple’s Baroque heyday. There will be time for shopping, to discover the work of artisans on Via Gregorio Armeno (famous for their nativity figures), and a stop for a caffe and sfogliatelle=delicious Neapolitan pastry.
We’ll return by private bus to Sorrento by early evening, giving you time to enjoy an aperitivo or shopping in the historic center, followed by a relaxing dinner on your own.

Meals Included: B, L

We’ll begin the day with one of the world’s most fascinating places: the ruins of ancient Pompeii. On our entertaining guided walk, we’ll focus on the treasures of its feminine history–including the Temples of Venus and Isis (Egyptian Mother Goddess and Enchantress), and the Building of the Priestess Eumachia, (Patron of Launderers).
You’ll have the afternoon to relax and shop in Sorrento. In the early evening, we’ll board a private bus for a 45-minute ride to Positano, a jewel of the Amalfi Coast. This former fishing village, with candy-colored stone homes set in the cliffs, is especially tantalizing at sunset. You’ll have time to explore the winding pathways, shop for ceramics, sandals, and Positano fashions. Dinner is on your own here, with my recommendations.

Meals Included: B

This day is dedicated to one of the most magical places on earth: the island of Capri. We’ll take a 20-minute ferry ride from Sorrento to get there, then a private boat excursion to marvel over the Blue Grotto. Up in the Capri town center, we’ll have lunch on our own...perhaps a Caprese salad? There will be free time to experience Capri’s luxurious shopping scene and explore the quieter paths on the outskirts of town, where The Gardens of Augustus and amazing views await.

(Please note: in case of bad weather, the Blue Grotto may not be accessible).

Enchanted, we’ll ferry back to Sorrento, and have dinner on our own.

Meals Included: B

Our morning will take us along the world-famous Amalfi Coast Drive to the town of Ravello, set high on the cliffs, with stupendous views, which inspired such greats as Virginia Wolff, DH Lawrence, and Wagner. You'll have time to wander in the garden of your choice: the Villa Rufolo, with colorful terraced gardens that inspired the composer Wagner, or Villa Cimbrone, with its legendary statue-flanked belvedere, opening to the best panorama of the coast.

Then we’re off down a windy road to Amalfi, to immerse ourselves in the Medieval atmosphere of this former Maritime Republic, with colorful pathways and stunning Arab-Sicilian marble cathedral. There will be time to explore Amalfi’s artisan boutiques, including traditional shops that make paper and ceramics, and have a delicious lunch on your own.
We’ll return to Sorrento by afternoon, giving you time for your final shopping and packing.
In the evening, we’ll gather for our Farewell Dinner at a traditional restaurant in Sorrento’s historic center, to celebrate our Golden Week, refreshed and inspired.

Meals Included: B, D

Our driver will transport you to the Naples airport or train station, where you’ll depart with Golden Memories of our week together...

Meals Included: B