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Paint in Beautiful Tuscany in the Fall

 16 Nights in Lucca and Cortona

 October 18-November 2, 2018


Shop at the Lucca Antique Faire (rumored to be the best antique faire in Italy), visit villas, explore Bagni di Lucca, take a day trip to the Cinque Terre, sip and/or savor in a Montecarlo Winery, see for yourself if the Tower of Pisa really leans, taste wine in Chianti, visit off-the-beaten-path villages, and local  museums.  Experience an Italian slow food meal, taste freshly made olive oil , cheese plus shoes (fresh from the factory), and more, including daily lessons in travel watercolor painting and sketching and... have time to relax!  


Here are the plans for the week (locations are subject to change due to open days of museums etc as well as the weather. )

Lucca ~ Spend 8 nights in a 4 star B & B in the heart of Lucca

Thursday, Oct. 18th  9 am we will meet up in Florence, sketch the Ponte Vechio then meet our drivers to drive  to our hotel in Lucca.  That afternoon we’ll have a short art lesson, explore a bit of Lucca and definitely have a cocktail/snack hour. 

Friday, Oct. 19th  Tour Villa Torrigiani and it's garden plus stop at a local winery.

Saturday, Oct. 20th  Tour Bagni di Lucca,  in the foothills of the “Tuscan Alps” and a few nearby villages.

Sunday, Oct. 21th  Stay in town and explore the Lucca Flea Market and Antique Faire that is the best in Italy!

Monday, Oct. 22th  A full day tour to the Cinque Terre (5 coastal villages with hiking trails, trains and ferries to travel in between them).  You’ll have the option to choose what you want to do and how much you’d like to see.  Our drivers will pick us up at an arranged point at the end of the day and take us back to Lucca. 

Tuesday, Oct. 23rd  Spend the day in Lucca, painting and exploring.  Optional tour to a winery for those who want to do more exploring. 

Wednesday, Oct. 24th  Visit Pisa and explore. There is a lot more to see in Pisa beyond the leaning tower.

Thursday, Oct. 25th  Our last day staying in Lucca, we’ll spend the day poking around Lucca, buy the items we forgot to buy, and for anyone who wants more action, optional tours can be arranged or there are several local trains a day to nearby villages as well as Florence.


Cortona ~  Spend 8 nights in a restored 15th Century Villa 4 star hotel in the heart of Cortona.

 The main square in Cortona.

The main square in Cortona.

Friday, Oct. 26th  Our driver for Cortona, Gianmarco and his co driver, will pick us up in the morning at our Lucca hotel. We will drive south through the beautiful Chianti Classico region stopping at the towns of Gaiole and Radda en Chianti plus a wonderful winery. We’ll arrive in Cortona in the late afternoon.

Saturday, Oct. 27th  Saturday is market day in Cortona, we will go to the market and browse the stalls and vendors who sell everything from bras to banannas. This is a great time to buy bargain priced tablecloths, purses, etc. so measure your table at home and translate that into centimeters if you’re planning to buy.

Sunday,  Oct. 28th  We will have a unique local experience to visit two local town festivals the Sagra del Toro in  Montalcino and another Sagra in a neighboring village. I hope we will get to dance in the streets. 

Monday, Oct. 29th Relaxed day in Cortona.

Tuesday,  Oct. 30th  A half-day tour to the local towns of Buonconvento to visit the Museo della Mezzadria and also to San Giovanni d’Asso to visit a mystical sculpture garden forest, Bosco della Ragnaia.  

Wednesday,  Oct. 31st  Visit and tour a wonderful organic farm agritourismo with a slow-food amazing multi course Italian lunch that will include cheese from the sheep you just met. If the weather permits, we’ll sit at a long table outside with a postcard-worthy view of theTuscan countryside.  We will visit a local winery in the afternoon.

 Our group Lunching in Cortona

Our group Lunching in Cortona

Thursday,  Nov. 1st  Visit the Pratesi Shoe Factory Outlet in Ambra Ar and lunch in San Savino.

Friday, Nov. 2nd  A half-day trip to Perugia with a visit to the Perugina Chocolate Factory and lunch the local nearby village of Corciano. Corciano was an abandoned village that was restored by a local man with a rags to riches story, who developed a successful cashmere sweater business and relocated it to Corciano and restored and saved the village.

Saturday,  Nov. 3rd  Pick up in the morning and delivery to Florence - either a hotel or airport or another pre-arranged location.  Note: cost for this final van ride is not included in our tour price since our group will split up to different locations.

Space on this tour is limited.  As of now, four spots are open.  A $500 deposit will reserve your space.

Price for this trip is $4,390 per person which includes daily art lessons and tutoring, all breakfasts, small group tours in mini vans with local drivers, 16 nights lodging in 4 Star B & Bs in a shared room (single room may be available for an additional fee), daily cocktail/snack hours and transportation from Florence to Lucca on Oct. 18th.  Airfare is not included. 

For more information and/or to register email Barbara at


 Class Graduation Photo 2015

Class Graduation Photo 2015