What our clients are saying
“Travelling with Anne and Beniamino was really special - fun, interesting and enriching. With the combination of Beniamino's extensive knowledge of all things Italian and Anne's thoughtfulness and organisation we couldn't have asked for more.”
“It didn't feel like a "touristy tour" as there was plenty of flexibility and time for relaxation while also seeing the sights in a friendly and low key, but informed way. Very enjoyable highlights were the visits to the winery and cheese warehouse, where we experienced a real glimpse of local life. We are so glad we did this trip.”
“It was a fantastic tour of the North of Italy and because I have never travelled to Europe I took the opportunity to go with a group. We experienced the most incredible scenery, buildings, villages and towns full of history and beautiful architecture. We were guided by professional tour guides so we really made the most of our adventures.”
“I had a marvellous time in Italy because there is so much to see and do there.! It is very difficult to choose just one highlight as there were so many. As a musician it was a joy to see a wonderful production of "Don Giovanni" at La Scala and to visit Cremona, home of the stringed instruments. I can honestly say that I loved every minute we were there. Sincere thanks to Anne and Beniamino for making this holiday possible and for all their hard work behind the scenes. If you have the opportunity to travel to Italy on one of their tours seize it with both hands! Italy is phenomenal!”
“If you want to enjoy the Italy the Italians know, this is the tour for you. Your tour escort Beniamino comes from the Mezzogiorno and you will be immersed in Italian culture in all its varied aspects. You will stay in carefully chosen first class accommodation in out of the way places and travel in a comfortable private vehicle with your own driver. You will see some amazing historical sites and stunning countryside. As you enjoy local food and wine, you will learn the fascinating history of what you are eating and drinking. This is the experience of a lifetime.”
Travelling with Beniamino
Readers of this journal will recall Franco Tevere's review of the novel by Beniamino Petrosino, "The Passage of the Frog and the Wild Strawberries of 1942."
In his novel, Beniamino wrote movingly about illiteracy, superstition, religion and economic deprivation in the southern part of Italy, the Mezzogiorno where he grew up, but his experience in no way dampened his love for his homeland and his people. Now, he proudly escorts luxury small group tours to the Mezzogiorno, spending time on the Amalfi Coast and then winding his way through Campania, Basilicata and Puglia. On the way, he takes groups to the picturesque village of Montesano sulla Marcellana where he was born and to Padula, home of his relative, the legendary Lieutenant Joe Petrosino, who fought against organised crime in New York in the late 19th Century. Beniamino is very proud that his relative will soon be the subject of a new film called "The Black Hand," starring Leonardo di Caprio.
Tour groups see where Beniamino worked as a shepherd at the age of nine and picked his way through the crumbling ruins of once grand Roman villas. He shows them "the sleeping dragon," the tiny village of Marsicovetere, perched high on a mountainside in a fabled land of castles and kings. Then Beniamino is off to the clay cliffs of Aliano, where Carlo Levi was exiled during the Fascist era and he will take them to a fabulous restaurant there run by the daughter of a man who, as a child, was taught to draw by the famous philosopher and doctor. The next stop is the ancient ‘sassi’ of Matera, where people have lived continuously since neolithic times. Tour groups stay in luxuriously converted caves in Matera and in the unique trulli houses in Alberobello.
Travelling with Beniamino is like going on an odyssey as he shares stories and places from his past and ferrets out the very best places to eat and the best local wines to drink. As a restaurateur with 40 years' experience, his skill in this respect is legendary. Beniamino is also an experienced Italian language teacher so tour members wanting to learn and speak some Italian will be in excellent hands. With groups of no more than 10 to 12 people, individual care and attention is guaranteed.
Beniamino's next tour of the Mezzogiorno starts on 7 May 2018 in Rome and it is not too late to book. Bookings are also open for Mezzogiorno tours and tours to other parts of Italy later this year and in 2019. As Connectitalia-NZ tours are land-based, people can join them from anywhere in the world. Readers who are interested in joining Beniamino and his business partner Anne Scragg are encouraged to visit the website of their company without delay and click on the Exclusive Tours of Italy tab.
For any inquiry and further information, please do not hesitate to contact us. We are looking forward to hearing from you -:)
Note: Any referral of a third person, which results in the sale of a place on a Connectitalia-NZ tour will attract a 5% commission payable to you, or a 10% discount for you when you take one of our tours. Commissions are based on individual land packages sold and are paid out in cash once payment in full has been made to us. Discounts are only applicable on our land packages and only apply if the commission option is forfeited. Once chosen the option cannot be revoked. Please note commission and discounts do not apply to air fares.