Serene Majesty: Mountains—More Mountains—and Lakes: Switzerland and Northern Italy Tour, June 14-25, 2018.
The Swiss are famous for political neutrality, and for chocolates, cows, mountains, watches, and Heidi. There is, however, so much more to discover. The goal of our Meredith tour is to explore Switzerland and northern Italy both on and off the beaten track.
From a wine tasting in UNESCO World Heritage designated vineyards overlooking Lake Geneva to a breath-taking cruise to a 9th Century castle on the lake, we will explore intriguing aspects of Swiss cultural history. We will stroll through the front streets and back streets of Zurich, Lucerne, Bern, and Montreux. We will travel through the stunning countryside to visit picturesque villages like Zermatt and Samedan. And we will eat traditional Swiss cuisine (raclette and fondue) accompanied by alphorn! And that’s all before we leave the Swiss Alps behind to journey south to Italy and the beautiful peaks that shelter the international la dolce vita that is Lake Como. Bellagio? Of course, but who would stay there when Varenna is just across the lake? During the tour you’ll learn how un-neutral Swiss soldiers were for hundreds of years, have as much chocolate as your heart desires, and decide, as we have, that you can never see too many magnificent, snowy Alps. Re-read Heidi (or watch the lovely original black and white film, starring adorable Shirley Temple, of course!). And don’t forget Liechtenstein!
Sicily: Most Treasured Daughter of the Mediterranean, September 25-October 7, 2018
Books like Under the Tuscan Sun have popularized the readily accessible delights of central Italy. Sicily’s charms, however, have remained a well-kept secret. We want it to stay that way, at least until after our Meredith Travels group has come and gone. Truth be told, it is one of our very favorite parts of a country we know well and love. We are eager to share it.
What you’ll discover is an exotic island that seems as much Greek as Italian, as strongly Middle Eastern as European. Additionally, there is Norman and Spanish heritage evident in plazas, architecture, and sculpture. What a heady cultural mélange! Our travels will take us from the cosmopolitan streets of Palermo to the wonderfully preserved Greek temples of Agrigento, to the pottery capital Caltigirone (the “Seagrove” of Sicily), to the fish markets of Catania.
Needless to say, stunning coastal views are ongoing as we circle the island. We will most often be dining alfresco on the freshest seafood, sometimes with a view of the sea that deserves either postcard or National Geographic recognition. So do plan to join us before everyone else discovers that Sicily has a compelling beauty, history, and culture uniquely its own!
For updates on the Meredith Travel Program, contact Denise Parker, associate director of alumnae relations, at email@example.com or (919) 760-8051.