Enjoy the Colosseum without Crowds
If it’s your first time in Rome, you can’t surely miss its most famous building, the Colosseum. When you travel in the summer months, it can be very difficult to visit this masterpiece of architecture because of endless lines of tourists and hot weather. That’s why a visit in Rome in winter is better just to make sure you don’t miss the most well known amphitheater of the world. Inside and out, the Colosseum on a winter day is relaxing.
Destinations Unlocked:Let our travel expert Stefano help you find your perfect Culture trip
Looking for an expert's perspective?Uncover my top 3 recommended places from each continent on the map.
1. GuatemalaAn express adventure for those with limited time off. Prepare yourself incredible experiences. You will hike a volcano, visit mayan temples and witness a ceremony and take in beautiful colonial Antigua.
2. BelizeA quick trip not too far away for those seeking a relaxing mini break. You will have plenty of free time to relax but also some awesome activities to experience the rainforest and the caribbean sea.
3. MexicoAn exciting mini trip exploring the lesser known colonial towns of central Mexico. This is hte perfect trip for someone with limited time off and still wants to turn on explorer mode and do something different.
1. EcuadorA remarkable 8 days adventure through the Andes and the Amazon rainforest. The best choice for adventure seekers wishing to visit the 2 most iconic areas of South America, in only 1 week and no flights.
2. PeruAn alternative itinerary to classic Peru, from Cusco to Arequipa. This itinerary is great combination of highlights Cusco and Machu Picchu with the lesser known Arequipa and Colca Canyon.
1. ItalyThe ultimate Italian experience from the vibrant streets of Naples to the breathtaking sceneries of the Amalfi Coast followed by Matera and down to Puglia with its golden beaches, intense flavours and fascinating destinations.
2. ScotlandEmbark on this great adventure starting from London all the way to Scotland with a true Scottish experience made of breathtaking sceneries, whisky tasting and ..lots of fun! Ideal for train lovers and explorers.
3. PortugalA wonderful train journey around Portugal, from the romantic city of Porto to the Douro Valley, to the beautiful Aveiro all the way to Lisbon and Sintra. The perfect trip to train, culinary and culture lovers.
1. South KoreaDiscover incredible temples, mountains and modern cities on this 10 day adventure. This trip is perfect for those seeking immersion in the cuisine, culture and natural wonders of South Korea.
2. ThailandFrom Bankgok to Angkor Wat to Ho Chi Minh City and everything in between - adventure through the heart of South-East Asia. Taste the delights, see history brought to life and unwind on a Mekong River cruise.
3. Sri LankaA fantastic adventure that showcases Sri Lanka's fantastic landscapes, wildlife and flavours. With 3 epic rail journeys, 3 UNESCO heritage sites and time to relax, this trip has loads to offer at a great price
1. MoroccoAn epic journey across Morocco: from Casablanca to Marrakech, through the blue city of Chefchaouen to the wonders of the desert and deep to the High Atlas Mountains - this trip has it all! Ideal for true explorers!
2. EgyptFrom Cairo to Aswan, this trip brings the land of the pharaohs to life. You'll visit the Pyramids, Valley of the Kings and Luxor Temple and cruise down the Nile in style. This is the perfect way to explore Egypt.
Enjoy the Mountains
From north to south, mountain lovers have a wealth of choices in Italy; skiing, alpine skiing, trekking, walking, snowboarding and so on, are all activities that you can do in the more than 400 Italian ski areas throughout the country. Winter sports enthusiasts can be sure that at this time of the year you won’t be bored, from Tre Cime di Lavaredo to Alta Via in the Dolomites, from Valtellina to Monte Bianco, you only have to choose your destination, book an airplane ticket and get ready to experience Italy at its best.
Take Your Time in Museums
Visiting an Italian museum is one the most extraordinary experiences that you’ll have in your life, but the lines and crowds can be really annoying and can turn your visit into a kind of battle. The best way to enjoy a fantastic museum experience in Italy is to visit its galleries in winter, a season in which the number of visitors reduces considerably. Imagine you are in the Uffizi Museum with no crowds and more staff on hand to help you in case you need extra explanations about artworks. A dream? Not in winter.
Head South for Winter Sunny Days
Italy is a country where in winter you can always find mild climate destinations and also sunbathe in the coldest months. Famous destinations like Rome, Naples and Palermo have warmer winter climates compared to other towns, but the best reason is that you can easily visit true hidden gems paying just a few euros, such as Alberobello in Apulia with its fascinating trulli and Matera, which has recently been nominated European Capital of Culture for 2019. Go visit it, before everyone else finds out how beautiful it is.
Visit Christmas Markets
Christmas is one of the best times to come to Italy, at least for Christmas enthusiasts. From north to south, Italy has plenty of street markets where it is possible to find a large number of gifts and handcrafted objects you won’t find in usual shops, and taste some of the most delicious Italian Christmas pastries. We strongly recommend to visit the street markets of the North of Italy, as well as Bolzano and Trento.
Enjoy the Winter Comfort Food
After a day of sightseeing, skiing or shopping, there is no better thing to do than enjoy a dinner with excellent Italian food with a good glass of wine and some friends. From polenta to soups, from truffles to mushrooms, from risotto to meat dishes, each part of Italy has its own unique and exquisite winter food. When it’s almost Christmas, remember to try Panettone, a typical Italian sweet bread with raisins and citrus peels, along with a cup of hot chocolate.
Take advantage of superb winter sales
Winter sales start on the first few days of January and finish at the end of February in all of Italy. If you are planning a shopping trip to one of the most famous fashion countries in the world, there is no better season. Prepare yourself to face the crowds and compete with some determined customers, but if you are smart you can buy some of the most expensive brands for lower prices.
Visit Nativity Scenes
Christmas is not famous only for its markets and foods, but also for nativity scenes, or Presepi in Italian. Every family makes their own and displays it in the most visible place of the home, but Presepi can be found everywhere in Italy, in churches, squares, shops and other public areas. Another event connected to this old tradition are the Presepi viventi, these enchanting living nativity scenes can be found in many parts of Italy, usually held for several days during Christmas week.
Visit Less Busy Wineries
If you are a wine enthusiast and want to taste Italian wines in authentic wineries, winter is a good time to do that. The grape harvest has been done in September and cellars are full of new bottles just waiting to be opened. Another plus is that the owners have more time to dedicate to visitors and to explain information about the wines.
Stay in Dream Hotels and Villas at a Lower Price
Italy is full of fabulous accommodations that in the summer holiday season are too expensive for many travelers. But winter is the perfect time to book a dream hotel room or even a villa for lower prices. Many hotels that are usually overbooked in spring and summer times have a significant number of empty rooms (except in the mountains) and consequently reduce their fares. Take advantage of it!
Carnival of Venice
There is no better way to end your winter than with a party at the Carnival of Venice that takes places every February in the famous Italian city. In Venice, it’s one of the main events of the year and the city is full of crowds, so if you don’t want to miss this festival you should book an hotel in advance. Also, other cities have carnivals during this time of the year, such as Viareggio and Ivrea, to name a few.
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meet our Local Insider
HOW LONG HAVE YOU BEEN A GUIDE?
WHAT DO YOU LOVE ABOUT YOUR JOB?
It's the personal contact, the personal experiences. I love meeting people from all over the world... I really like getting to know everyone and feeling like I'm traveling with a group of friends.
WHAT DESTINATION IS ON YOUR TRAVEL BUCKET-LIST?
I have so many places on my list, but I would really lobe to go to Africa. I consider myself an “adventure girl” and Africa feels like the ULTIMATE adventure!
Every CULTURE TRIP Small-group adventure is led by a Local Insider just like Hanna.
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Since you are here, we would like to share our vision for the future of travel - and the direction Culture Trip is moving in.
Culture Trip launched in 2011 with a simple yet passionate mission: to inspire people to go beyond their boundaries and experience what makes a place, its people and its culture special and meaningful — and this is still in our DNA today. We are proud that, for more than a decade, millions like you have trusted our award-winning recommendations by people who deeply understand what makes certain places and communities so special.
Increasingly we believe the world needs more meaningful, real-life connections between curious travellers keen to explore the world in a more responsible way. That is why we have intensively curated a collection of premium small-group trips as an invitation to meet and connect with new, like-minded people for once-in-a-lifetime experiences in three categories: Culture Trips, Rail Trips and Private Trips. Our Trips are suitable for both solo travelers, couples and friends who want to explore the world together.
Culture Trips are deeply immersive 5 to 16 days itineraries, that combine authentic local experiences, exciting activities and 4-5* accommodation to look forward to at the end of each day. Our Rail Trips are our most planet-friendly itineraries that invite you to take the scenic route, relax whilst getting under the skin of a destination. Our Private Trips are fully tailored itineraries, curated by our Travel Experts specifically for you, your friends or your family.
We know that many of you worry about the environmental impact of travel and are looking for ways of expanding horizons in ways that do minimal harm - and may even bring benefits. We are committed to go as far as possible in curating our trips with care for the planet. That is why all of our trips are flightless in destination, fully carbon offset - and we have ambitious plans to be net zero in the very near future.