Salt & Wind Trips – Travel in Good Taste
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DISCOVER NORTHERN ITALY

Andiamo in Italia!

Join us in Italy this October. On this 6-night, 7-day trip, a small group of us will head to Northern Italy for a food excursion. The week will be a mix of urban and rural as we head from chic Milan to the off-the-radar Franciacorta wine region. Our trip includes walking tours, expert-led food tours, art gallery visits, market visits, wine tastings, shopping, boutique accommodations, a concierge, a group photographer, private transportation, wifi hotspots, and morning yoga! 

SEE ITINERARY & FAQs FOR MORE

 
 
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FROM MILAN TO LaKE ISEO

Northern Italy

 

 

To some, Milan is regarded as too modern of a city, but to us, it's one of the most diverse and international cities in Italy. Thanks to the 2015 World Fair, the city is bursting with creativity. Like Milan, most of northern Italy is less known to tourists and one of the biggest gems is the world-class wine region Franciacorta. If you haven't been, we'd love to show you!

SEE ITINERARY & FAQs FOR MORE

 
 
Salt & Wind Italy Trip: Milan Streetcar
Salt & Wind Italy Trip: Gelato
Salt & Wind Italy Trip:  Market in Milan
Salt & Wind Italy Trip:  Aida Mollenkamp Milan
Salt & Wind Italy Trip:  Fall Produce
Salt & Wind Italy Trip: Wine Country
Salt & Wind Italy Trip:  Lake Iseo View
 

All In The Details

Your Trip Includes...

Here's what's included in the trip fare:

  • A group photographer so you can enjoy the moment

  • Hands-on cooking class with host and chef, Aida Mollenkamp 

  • Street food tour conducted by the regional food experts 

  • Market tours, art gallery visits, and pop-up parties with local creatives

  • Complimentary morning yoga classes

  • A group concierge to help with any extra events you may want to plan

  • 20 edited group photos daily 

  • Group transportation to/from Milan airport and to/from all events listed 

  • Boutique hotel accommodations with complimentary wifi

  • Meals listed in the itinerary (plus 1 alcoholic drink at each lunch and dinner)

  • Tips for all meals, hotels, and drivers

  • Wifi hotspots at all times

  • A few gifts from some of our favorite food & travel brands

  • A couple surprises! (You didn’t think we’d tell you every last detail, did you?)

The following are not included in the trip fare:

  • Any incidental expenses 

  • Tips for photographer and trip hosts

  • Required travel insurance

  • Any extra excursions or events you plan with our concierge

  • Transportation from your home to/from Milan, Italy

  • Hotel city tax (usually 3 to 5 euros daily) paid directly to the hotel

  • Alcohol except for 1 alcoholic drink at both lunch and dinner

 
Salt & Wind Norther Italy Trip: Wine Tasting In Franciacorta
 

Sample Itinerary

Each trip is unique so we don't have a one-size-fits-all itinerary, but we work with the same partners to guarantee quality. All itineraries have first-rate food, market tours, wine tasting, shopping, and a few surprises. Here's a sample itinerary:


 
Salt & Wind Norther Italy Trip: Milan Building

Day 1: Meet in Milan and Welcome Aperitivo

AS FLIGHTS ARRIVE // Meet AT THE AIRPORT & HEAD TO MILAN

Meet staff at the airport and transfer to your hotel.  

10:00 AM - 3:00 PM // CITY WALKING TOUR (optional)

If you arrive early, we can take you on a brief walking tour to help fight jet lag!

3:00 - 6:00 PM // Check In & Free Time

Settle into our Milan accommodations + relax. (Or have our concierge arrange an excursion.)

6:00 - 8:00 PM // Aperitivo

Welcome reception with a traditional Italian aperitivo of local cocktails and food. 

8:00 PM // CONTEMPORARY mILANESE DINNER

Have an easy (and quick) dinner to help you get on the time zone!

EVENING // OVERNIGHT IN MILAN

 


Salt & Wind Norther Italy Trip: Milan Farmers Market

Day 2: City Tour, Market Visit, and a Classic Dinner

7:00 - 9:00 AM // BREAKFAST AT THE HOTEL

Enjoy breakfast at the hotel at your leisure 

10:00 -11:00 AM // CITY CENTER TOUR

Walk the city center while learning about Milan's history in Italy.

11:00 AM // COFFEE BREAK

Do a coffee break at a Milanese coffee bar known for its local pastries.

11:00 AM - 12:00 PM // Market Tour

Get a tour of one of the main markets where you can shop for everything from cheese to chess. 

12:30 -1:30 PM // FARM-TO-TABLE LUNCH

Head to the city limits for a farm-to-table meal at a Villa. 

1:30 - 3:00 PM // FONDAZIONE PRADA VISIT

Visit the gorgeous Fondazione Prada and grab a drink at the Wes Anderson-designed bar. 

3:00 -7:00 PM // Free Time

Relax at the hotel. (Or have our concierge arrange an excursion.)

7:00 PM // CLASSIC MILANESE DINNER

Try what is argued to be the best classic food (risotto Milanese!) in the city. 

EVENING // OVERNIGHT IN MILAN


Salt & Wind Italy Trip: Vegetarian Meal

Day 3: Shopping Tour, Villa Visit, and a Canal Crawl

7:00 - 9:00 AM // BREAKFAST AT THE HOTEL

Enjoy breakfast at the hotel at your leisure 

10:00 AM -1:00 PM // STYLIST VISIT + SHOPPING TOUR

Meet one of Milan's premier stylists and discover their favorite shopping streets.

1:00 -2:00 PM // VEGETARIAN LUNCH

Lunch like a modern Milanese at one of the chicest spots in the city. 

2:00 - 4:00 PM // VISIT VILLA NECCHI CAMPIGLIO (optional)

Visit the architecture-forward villa (and setting for film "I Am Love.") 

4:00 - 6:30 PM // Free Time

Relax at the hotel. (Or have our concierge arrange an excursion.)

6:30 PM // NEIGHBORHOOD TOUR AND FOOD CRAWL

Do a food and cocktail crawl in one of the most interesting neighborhoods in Milan. 

EVENING // OVERNIGHT IN MILAN


Salt & Wind Norther Italy Trip: Fiat In Milan

Day 4: Milan to Brescia to Franciacorta

7:00 - 9:00 AM // BREAKFAST AT THE HOTEL

Enjoy breakfast at the hotel at your leisure.

9:00 AM // CHECK OUT & DRIVE TO BRESCIA

Leave Milan and head to the town of Brescia.

10:30 AM - 12:30 PM // BRESCIA WALKING TOUR

Walk the city center of Brescia that's a sort of open-air museum with history and Roman ruins.

1:00 - 2:30 PM // CANTINA LUNCH

Head into Franciacorta wine country for a creative wine pairing lunch. 

3:00 - 7:00 PM // CHECK IN TO FRANCIACORTA HOTEL

Check in to the hotel in Franciacorta and relax.

7:00 PM // CASUAL DINNER

Have a relaxed dinner in Franciacorta.  

EVENING // OVERNIGHT IN FRANCIACORTA


Salt & Wind Norther Italy Trip: Wine Tasting In Franciacorta

Day 5: Wine Tasting In Franciacorta

8:00 - 8:45 AM // Yoga (optional)

Start your day with a vigorous flow.

8:00 - 10:00 AM // Breakfast

Enjoy breakfast at the hotel at your leisure.

11:00 AM -12:30 PM // WINE TASTING

Head into Franciacorta for a wine tasting of some of the region's premier wines. 

1:00 - 2:30 PM // EASY LUNCH

Have a relaxed lunch while trying more wine.

4:00 -7:00 PM //  Free Time

Relax at the hotel. (Or have our concierge arrange an excursion.)

7:30 PM //  DINNER

Have a relaxed countryside dinner. 

EVENING // OVERNIGHT IN FRANCIACORTA


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Day 6: Cooking Class and Dinner on the Lake

8:00 - 8:45 AM // Yoga (optional)

Start your day with a vigorous flow.

8:00 - 9:30 AM // Breakfast

Enjoy breakfast at the hotel at your leisure.

9:30 AM - 11:30 AM // BIKING OR HIKING TOUR (optional)

Get a tour of the area by biking or hiking through the region.

12:00 -2:30 PM // COOKING CLASS, LUNCH, & WINE TASTING

Do a cooking class and enjoy some more local wine.

3:00 -6:00 PM // Free Time

Relax at the hotel. (Or have our concierge arrange an excursion.)

6:00 PM // LAKE TOUR AND DINNER

Ferry across the lake to a fully local dinner. 

EVENING // OVERNIGHT IN FRANCIACORTA


Salt & Wind Travel Northern Italy Trip: Caffe Macchiato

Day 7: Head Back Home

8:00 - 8:45 AM // Yoga (optional)

Start your day with a vigorous flow.

8:00 - 9:30 AM // Breakfast

Enjoy breakfast at the hotel at your leisure.

9:45 AM // CHECK OUT

Head out of Lake Iseo.

10:00 - 11:30 AM  // DRIVE TO MALPENSA

Drive the 90 minute drive from Lake Iseo to Malpensa airport. 

11:30 AM // MALPENSA DROp OFFS

Our drivers will take you back to the airport where we all first met. 

 

I HAVE A FEW QUESTIONS...


WHY NORTHERN ITALY?

Why did you guys choose Milan?

Ok, so you’ve probably completed Italy 101. You’ve visited Rome, Florence and Venice, sampled all the gelato your stomach can handle, and gotten all the Duomo Insta pics that your heart desired.

What about Italian 201? Enter Milan, which has been somewhat of an “ugly duckling” (people write it off as too modern) amongst its Italian counterparts, up until now. We think Milan gets a bad rap, and for what? Visitors and locals alike will vouch that Milan is the only Italian metropolis with a true connection to the rest of Europe. Here you’ll find the traditional Italian influences in food, wine and culture, but you’ll also hear a mish-mash of languages being traded over espresso at coffee shops which adds to the worldly heartbeat that is the core of Milanese culture.

The World Fair in 2015, during which Milan played hostess to 22 million guests, ushered in a much-needed modernization of the city. The city benefited in the form of new gardens, attractions, and restaurants to satisfy any new-age traveler with a penchant for art and adventure. The gist? If you haven’t been to Milan recently, trust us and join us.

I've never heard of Franciacorta. What's that all about?

Here’s the deal with Franciacorta: it’s that perfectly quaint Italian region you’ve dreamt of but never heard of. Our founder discovered the region and couldn’t stop raving about its glorious vineyards and it’s beautiful backdrop of the lake. Among Franciacorta’s high points? It is the only region in Italy making wine in the Champagne sparkling method, it’s a getaway for the chicest of Milan residents, there's a glacial lake setting, and lots to do from biking to hiking to wine tasting and spa time. And its close proximity to Verona means we can day trip there in a sec. We’ve been waiting patiently to blow the top off on this best-kept-secret of Italy, and we’re finally ready to share this little slice of heaven exclusively with our Salt and Wind travelers.

ITALY TRIP ATTENDEES

What sort of traveler would enjoy the Italy trip?

Our Italy trip is curated for the easy going traveler who enjoys the cross-section of high and low tourism. We’ll be mixing the two often to create an authentically Italian experience for our travelers, meaning one day will be lunch in an alley of Milan with a Panino in hand, and another will be dinner at a Michelin-star restaurant. The days are long and packed with oodles of activities, and some surprises are in store, so high energy, get-up-and-go attitudes are encouraged.

How many guests are there total? Who else is going on this trip?

We cap these trips at 12 guests and then 3 to 5 staff with us at any given time (including drivers, the photographer, the concierge, tour guides, and our founder/host, Aida Mollenkamp). This makes for a big enough group to keep it lively but small enough you don't feel like its group travel. 

We encourage you to bring a friend, significant other, or family member, because our trips are priced for double occupancy rooms and we think it's always more fun to have a roomie you know. Of course, solo travelers are more than welcome too!

TRIP DETAILS

How much travel is involved?

We’re exploring two completely different sides of Italy with this trip, getting an inside look at one of its largest cities, and uncovering the local’s best-kept-secret that is the Franciacorta wine region. 

The entire itinerary takes place within about 100 mile radius so there’s not too much car time. And, we do our best to break it up so you never have to be in the car for more than 2 hours at one time. Of course, unforeseen circumstances or traffic could cause delays but we’ll do our best! 

Can I bring a friend or significant other with me?

Please do! Rooms are priced for double occupancy to make it super simple. Just indicate when you book that you would like to room together so we can arrange it for you!

Are food and drinks covered?

For the most part, yes! All wine tastings and meals listed in the itinerary are included (including 1 alcoholic drink at each lunch and dinner). Our seated meals will be served either family-style, as a fixed menu, or as tasting menus, which allows our restaurant partners to service our large group in a consistent manner. Please inform us in advance of any food allergies or dietary restrictions.

Will I need extra spending money? Should it be Euros?

If you would like to shop for yourself, there will be a few opportunities to do so. Anything you shop for is to be paid by you, separately. We will make various ATM stops so you can pull out some euros. Oh, and be sure to your bank know your leaving the country.

I don’t speak Italian, is this a problem?

Absolutely not! All of our partners speak Italian and we have Italian speakers on staff.

There’s a lot here — how busy will I be?

We want you to really get to know the areas we’re traveling to but know that you’re on vacation and will want some downtime too! That said most days don’t start until 10AM and we try to pepper in a fair amount of free time in the afternoon as well as optional activities.

What is the weather like? What should I pack?

Northern Italy's weather is similar to the East Coast of the United States. That said Fall temperatures ranges from the low 40s at night to the high 60s during the day and it does rain every once in awhile, so we recommend packing lots of layers, some rain gear, and a few scarves and hats.

ACCOMMODATIONS

We have partnered with hotels that meet the Salt & Wind standards of service. 

Room Options

Double Occupancy

Double occupancy pricing is the price for (1) person to stay in a shared (i.e. double) room. In other words, each person staying in that room will pay the posted double occupancy rate. If you're a couple or friends traveling together, please know that you'll each pay the double occupancy rate. Please indicate if you want two separate beds or one bed so we can plan accordingly.

Single Occupancy

Need some alone time? We hear you. That's why we offer single occupancy rooms. The single occupancy rate is what you will pay to have the room all to yourself. 

Roommates

If you do not have a travel partner, you can purchase single occupancy and have the room all to yourself. Please contact us at travel@saltandwind.com to discuss further. 

How many Americans will I run into? 

The fact it’s an under-appreciated tourism destination? That means it’s not (yet) as touristy as better known regions. While you’ll get to experience it before it becomes overrun, it also means service can vary. An open-minded traveler who is sympathetic to the changing environment of a foreign country will have the best time.

LOGISTICS

So, do I have to get to Milan from the airport by myself?

Nope! We will be providing private transportation from Milan's Malpensa airport to our hotel so please book your flights into Malpensa airport. 

 

I don’t live close by. Can you book my flight?

We do not directly book flights nor does the trip price cover airfare from your hometown to Milan, Italy. But, we can help! Just ask and we'll connect you with our travel agent who can assist you with those details.

I need more time off! Can I add additional days on to the trip?

Great! We plan to add on day trips or trip extensions to the trips in the near future. For now, you can use our concierge (for an additional fee) to arrange additional tours, restaurants, or hotel nights. And, if you want to stay longer in Italy or Europe, we can help you get preferred rates with our hotel partners.

SAFETY & PRECAUTIONS

I gotta ask...is it safe?

Our team members have all spent an extensive amount of time traveling, drinking, eating, shopping and hanging out in all of the locations we will visit.  We would not be running trips there if we didn’t think it was safe, but we urge you to check the U.S. State Department website to make your own determinations. You can also enroll in the STEP program for travel warnings and updates. As with any unfamiliar location, we urge you to take precautions against pickpockets and to minimize traveling with unnecessary valuable goods, like high-end jewelry. All of the hotels we partner with have their own security and safes.

Not to be a downer but what happens in case of a medical emergency?

This area of Italy has a long history of U.S. tourists so the quality of care is excellent. You can also look into buying a MedeVac such as AirMed if you want to be taken somewhere else for medical care.

Do you recommend trip insurance?

Yes, we actually require travel insurance in case you are unable to come due to circumstances beyond your control. There are a variety of services for providing trip insurance and note that many credit cards (such as Chase Sapphire and American Express) include the service as part of a trip purchase. Please check with your credit card to confirm. 

Does Global Entry help with expediting customs?

If you travel a lot, you'll want to look into the CBP Global Entry program, which allow you to have expedited customs experience. Global Entry is used anytime travelers return to the U.S. from an international trip and it help expedite customs and border patrol, so you'll be able to use it above and beyond the Salt & Wind trip too! Also, FYI, Global Entry enrollment includes TSA Pre Check so you'll get both when you apply.

PRICING & PAYMENT

For a specific trip's pricing please visit the "Reserve" section of the site.

For more specifics on payment, head to our general FAQs and be sure to take a look at our Booking Terms and Conditions for the fine print.

FURTHER QUESTIONS?

Have additional questions? Contact us at travel@saltandwind.com