Dreaming of a wine trip to Italy? The cost of travelling can quickly add up, especially when you decide to visit more than one wine region. Luckily there is a way to save money on transport, so you can spend it on your favourite bottle of wine or Italian dinner.
Italian Wine Trip Inspiration
In September 2019, I travelled to France to help a Champagne brand with content creation during harvest and then travelled to Switzerland where I helped a small family winery in the vineyards and the cellar during harvest. Everyone that knows me well, knows that Italy has a special place in my heart and it did not take much convincing from my Italian friends for me to start planning my trip.
I have visited Northern Italy before, but I have to confess I was a typical tourist, running from one city to the next, ticking off the Landmarks, one by one off the bucket list. The second trip was going to be different. I wanted to visit more wine regions and spend time learning more about the wine regions and winemaking styles on a more relaxed wine trip.
Since I was travelling on a small budget and I was not in a hurry, I chose Flixbus as my main from of transportation. Depending on when you book your ticket, you can travel between €7- €40 and on some routes it is possible to take a night buss and save money on accommodation.
The Pros and Con's of Bus travel
Pro: One advantage of using Flixbus for travel is the affordable price point. Flixbus often offers tickets at a lower cost compared to other modes of transportation, making it a budget-friendly option for those travelling within Europe.
One of the things that made travelling with Flixbus a unique and enjoyable experience was the option to take a night bus. I loved being able to sleep on the bus and wake up at a new destination the next morning. One of my fondest memories from this trip was arriving in Verona at 6:00 a.m. and walking through the quiet streets as the city slowly came to life.
Flixbus has an extensive network of routes that can take you to both popular destinations and more off-the-beaten-path locations. With free Wi-Fi, and the ability to charge devices, Flixbus can make long journeys more enjoyable.
Con: However, there are also some downsides to travelling with Flixbus. One of the main disadvantages is that the buses can sometimes be delayed or arrive late, which can cause an inconvenience. Something that I struggled with, was the location of the bus stations. Sometimes they would not be in the city centre and it would be difficult to travel to, especially if you decide to take a night bus.
Whether or not Flixbus is a comfortable way to travel really depends on who you end up sitting next to. While the affordable prices make it a popular choice, the seating can be cramped and not ideal for longer journeys, with limited legroom. However, if you're lucky enough to have a seat next to someone who is courteous and mindful of personal space, then it can be a relatively comfortable and enjoyable journey. On the other hand, if you're stuck next to someone who takes up too much space or is disruptive, then the journey can be quite unpleasant.
The Vino Voyage Itinerary : A Wine-Fueled Adventure Through Northern Italy
Day 1-3: Explore Florence and Tuscany
Begin your adventure in Florence, the cradle of the Renaissance. Spend three days admiring the breathtaking architecture, art, and history of this enchanting city and soaking up the Tuscan sun.
If it's your first time visiting Florence, make sure to explore the Duomo, climb the Bell Tower, and visit the Uffizi Gallery, where you'll find works by Michelangelo, Botticelli, and other Italian masters. Take some time and discover Tuscany's breathtaking landscapes, art treasures, and world-renowned wines. I would highly recommend taking a guided tour to help you explore the picturesque hill towns of Siena and San Gimignano.
I absolutely loved my wine tourism experience in Tuscany, where I got to ride a Vespa and taste the famous Sangiovese wine. You can read more about this amazing experience by clicking here, but be sure to remember to indulge in plenty of Sangiovese tastings while you're there!
Day 4- 6: From the Birthplace of the Renaissance to Shakespeare's Romantic Setting
Verona is a beautiful city full of history and culture. There are plenty of things to see and do here, including visiting the famous Arena di Verona, an ancient Roman amphitheatre that still hosts concerts and opera performances today. You can also take a stroll through the Piazza delle Erbe, a bustling square lined with colourful buildings, cafes, and restaurants.
But perhaps one of the best things to do in Verona is to taste the region's famous wines. The nearby wine region of Valpolicella is known for its rich, full-bodied red wines, including Amarone and Ripasso. You can take a tour of local wineries to learn about the winemaking process and sample some of these delicious wines
Day 6- 8: From the City of Love to the City of Water: Exploring Verona and Venice
Venice is a city like no other, with its unique canals and stunning architecture. It's a must-visit destination for anyone travelling to Northern Italy. Spend your time wandering through the narrow alleys, visiting the Piazza San Marco, and admiring the grandeur of the Rialto Bridge. To make the most of your time in Venice, consider taking a guided tour to explore the hidden gems of the city. And if you're a wine lover, don't miss the opportunity to visit the nearby Prosecco hills, where you can taste some of the region's best sparkling wines and enjoy the stunning views of the rolling hills covered in vineyards.
Day: 8-11: From Gondolas to Mountains: Venice to Turin
Torino, also known as Turin, is a beautiful city located at the foothills of the Alps. It's famous for its rich history, beautiful architecture, and delicious food.
Take a stroll through the city centre and admire the grandeur of the Turin Cathedral, or visit the Egyptian Museum to explore one of the largest collections of ancient Egyptian artefacts in the world. After spending some time in Turin, take the train to Piedmont, a beautiful wine region located nearby.
Here, you can visit local wineries and taste some of the region's famous Barolo and Barbaresco wines, explore the charming towns of Alba and Asti, or simply take in the stunning views of the rolling hills covered in vineyards. It's a great way to experience the beauty and charm of Northern Italy.
Visiting multiple wine regions in Italy doesn't have to break the bank. By taking advantage of cost-effective travel options such as Flixbus and trains, you can save money on transport and use those savings to indulge in your favourite Italian wine or cuisine.
Whether you're exploring the rolling hills of Tuscany, wandering the canals of Venice, or savouring the elegant Barolo wines in Piedmont, there's no shortage of amazing wine experiences to be had in Italy. So don't let the cost of travel hold you back from experiencing the rich history, culture, and flavours of this beautiful country.
Cheers to affordable wine travel!