As a global tour operator, we are committed to traveling responsibly and endeavour to practise sustainable tourism wherever we visit. We believe that responsible travel is about the attitude you take with you and the choices you make when traveling - to respect and benefit local people, their cultures, economy and the environment.
We expect our staff and travelers to demonstrate the principles of responsible travel - respecting people, cultures and local environments; in the distribution of wealth, in good will and cross-cultural sharing and in contributing to sustainable development.
We take care in ensuring we use local transport throughout and always travel in small groups – this tour has a maximum of 12 but our average is around 10 passengers – and this enables us to stay in locally owned, small accommodation, encouraging unique connections with local people.
This tour will lead you on an exciting, culturally rich and flavoursome journey through the variable cuisines of Italy, with countless opportunities to interact with local people and learn their delicious cookery secrets. On this trip in particular you stay at a family run agriturismo and witness the regional tradition of olive-oil pressing.
In Bologna we visit the local market to collect ingredients for our cooking class, held in the heart of the local food market. We visit the producers of Parmigiano-Reggiano cheese, Prosciutto di Parma and a centuries old acetaia [vinegar loft] to learn all about the production of Balsamic vinegar. These experiences not only give our travelers a great insight into local life, but also put imperative financial resources back into the local economy, create jobs and support local businesses.
From Venice we head out into the agriturismo-rich area of Marca Trevigiana, famous for its sparkling Prosecco wines and divine local produce. We sample Monte Cesen’s delicious mountain cheeses on a visit to a local cheese maker before visiting Cesare de Stefani’s salami ‘factory’. We encourage our travelers to purchase their souvenirs from the local businesses and to get involved with making the foods as well as sampling them, channelling money back into their economy.
As a company, our responsibilities don’t stop when our tours end. We run and support a variety of projects, from healthcare, education, human rights, child welfare, sustainable development and environmental and wildlife protection. Our own in house foundation has been in operation for over 11 years; a not-for-profit fund that has distributed over AU$3 million to more than 70 non-government organisations since 2002. Donations come from our travelers and are then matched by us dollar for dollar.