Italian Winter Getaways

Italian Winter Getaways

Famous for its summer holiday offerings, Italy's winter months can also deliver some lesser-known gems if you know where to look. Catering to those with a penchant for culture, adventure, and rejuvenation, Essteele has whittled down a list of envy-inducing Italian winter breaks.

Venice Carnival

Dating back over 900 years the internationally famous Carnevale di Venezia sees Venice explode with street parades, jugglers, and exhibitions every year. In 2017, shoe-makers, costumers, gondola's artisans, masks-makers, glass-makers and fabrics-makers will demonstrate their skills in the main square of Piazza S. Marco just as it was in eighteenth-century Venice. For super-central accommodation book at the hippest of hotels, the Palazzina G in Venice’s San Marco district. With design input from Philippe Starck, the 16th-century building also deserves a special mention for its dedicated champagne bar.

Venice Carnival runs from 11 February until 28 February 2017 and the program can be found online at//

Thermal spas of Tuscany

Tuscany is an annual mecca for wellness warriors seeking reprieve from the chilly winter months. The region is famous for its plethora of hot, bubbling, natural springs dotting the countryside which provides rich mineral and therapeutic properties. Check into the Fonteverde Tuscan Resort & Spa, located in San Casciano dei Bagni. With a dedicated thermal pool and a range of luxe pampering options, the resort is a welcome haven for anyone looking to escape the Italian winter.

Località Terme, 1, 53040 San Casciano dei Bagni SI, Italy

Phone: +39 0578 57241

Cultural immersion

Some of the world's most beautiful theatres reside in Italy and it is during winter that the nation's opera, symphony and theatre seasons come to life. The most famous opera house in Italy is Teatro Alla Scala in Milan and the season begins every year on December 7th, the feast day of St. Ambrose, patron saint of Milan. Celebrities, royalty and politicians all clamour to attend opening night, and bookings for the season's program should be made well in advance to avoid disappointment.

Snowshoeing in the Dolomites

For nature lovers craving an Italian winter wonderland experience but without the kamikaze snowboarders and ski bunnies, this popular activity provides a welcome alternative. Enhanced by the stunning scenery of the Dolomites, the snow-capped mountains provide serenity and adventure in equal measure. Mountain guide gurus include the Alta Badia Guide School situated in Corvara, right in the heart of the Dolomites and they advise that whilst no prior experience is needed, participants need to be happy walking for four to five hours.

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