Destination: Italy An Off-the-Beaten-Track Honeymoon for the Adventurous Couple

Posted by Azure on March 13th, 2009
Special Feature by Madeline Clarke Jhawar of Italy Beyond the Obvious Hello, savvy travelers! Feel free to use the honeymoon itinerary below, or contact Italy Beyond the Obvious for an itinerary that’s more closely matched to your interests and travel pace. Tell us you saw us on for a 20% discount, through July 2009.

Summit a volcano at midnight. Hike high above the Mediterranean coast on a narrow mule path. Balance the hiking with beach time and a visit to the ancient excavated city of Pompeii. End with a two-night splurge in the Tuscan countryside, in one of Italy's most romantic hotels. Day 1: Arrive Naples International Airport and catch the hydrofoil to the Aeolian Islands of Sicily: destination Lipari. Relax, bask in the sun, and recover from your trip during the 6-hour cruise. Day 2: Explore the island and beaches of Lipari, then grab your water bottles and dress in layers: you’re climbing an active volcano tonight! Catch the late afternoon boat to the island of Stromboli and meet your guide for the 3-hour hike to the top. After multiple jaw-dropping views, enjoy your midnight summit with a water break and a snack. You're back in bed in Lipari around 4 am. Day 3: Sleep in, do some shopping, or enjoy a gelato in town, then it’s arrivederci to the Aeolian Islands, as you cruise back to Naples with fantastic views of the Italian mainland. Day 4: Hop the train to the archaeological site of Pompeii, and spend the day exploring the ruins of this incredible city that was frozen in time under a blanket of lava almost two thousand years ago. Day 5: Amble through the craft area of Naples around Via San Gregorio Armeno for some local finds, then visit the Archaeological Museum to round out yesterday’s trip to Pompeii. For dinner, it's - what else - pizza, in the city that gave birth to this classic Italian dish! Day 6: Catch the train up to the Cinque Terre and drop your bags at your hotel in the town of Vernazza. Then lace up your hiking boots and set off along the narrow ancient mule path along the cliffs above the Mediterranean. After 90 minutes, you reach Monterosso al Mare. You’ve got time to taste the local focaccia and explore this picturesque town, then catch the water taxi or train back to Vernazza to freshen up for dinner. Day 7: Today starts with another short but serious hike. Pack your swimsuit and towel so you can cool off in the Mediterranean later. Almost two hours plus a few hundred olive trees, lemon trees, and fig trees down the road, you’re in the tiny cliffside town of Corniglia, population 550. It’s a perfect place to sit with a mid-morning coffee. Back on the trail, it's about 45 minutes of sea views to Manarola, where the beach awaits! Or continue along the completely flat Via dell'Amore or "path of love", and in a mere 20 minutes you reach the last of the Cinque Terre: Riomaggiore. When you're ready, catch a water taxi back to Vernazza and enjoy the views from the water. Day 8: Pick up your rental car and head to the Tuscan countryside, where you’re staying at the Locanda dell'Amorosa. Make a brief stop to explore the tiny medieval hamlet of Monteriggioni, and then arrive at your hotel with time to lounge by the pool before dinner. Day 9: After the Locanda’s sumptuous breakfast, chill out poolside and soak up the gorgeous views. Late afternoon: head to the town of Montalcino for a wine tasting, then stop in the lovely town of Pienza for dinner and an evening walk. Day 10: After breakfast, check out of the Locanda and head to the historic town of Siena to spend the day, then make your way to the airport.

A presto, Italia!
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