Nov 212019
 

The Venetian Lagoon, Photo by Nathan Hoyt/Forktales 2018

No doubt you have heard about the disastrous rains and resulting floods in Venice in recent weeks—the worst since the tragic flooding of 1966 that did so much damage to the city and its art and architectural treasures; to homes and shops and livelihoods. Those of you who have been on our culinary sailing cruises of the lagoon islands no doubt wonder how Mauro Stoppa, our Venetian captain and host and his beloved ship the Eolo, have fared. Because the boat was out of the water for seasonal repairs and maintenance when the violent storms hit again and again over several days, both are safe. Only his small dingy, used for trips to the Rialto market for food supplies, was destroyed.

The Eolo in dry-dock.

You can support our unique and extraordinary culinary sailing tour by joining us for a spring or autumn tour. Participate in a venture designed by our captain and host, a native Venetian who takes great pride in drawing you into the insider’s Venice. Be amazed by these fabled islands that rise out of the sea like a fairy vision. You will no doubt find, as so many of our guests have, that you will have an adventure of a lifetime. Ours are the only tours of their kind that go behind the spectacle that is Venice to explore its nooks, crannies, and backstreets. We take you to the enchanting smaller islands where the native Venetians still live and work far away from the hordes of visitors on the main island. We will expertly navigate the lagoon waters, gliding through the mesmerizing calm and beauty of this sea-within-a-sea while our crew serves you the delights that emerge from the galley based on genuine local cooking that our host learned from his Venetian mother (note that we can custom prepare vegetarian menus and accommodate guests with dietary restrictions).

Greeting Mauro. Photo: Nathan Hoyt/Forktales, 2017

Hundreds of years after the decline of its dominant sea power, Venice, which once controlled the trade routes to Persia, India, and China, survives on tourism, even while foreign cruise ships disturb the fragile ecosystem of their waters and the punishing forces of climate change ravage it. Experts say that just like Atlantis—a continent that sank into the sea many thousands of years ago—Venice will disappear within a hundred years. But Venetians have grit and determination and will rebuild, as they always have. They have already begun. Join us for what so many of our guests say is the trip of a lifetime.

Experience the magic of the lagoon, its history and culture; natural life, music, and rich local traditions.

Summary of our itineraries for the spring and fall, 2020 culinary and cultural tours of Venice & its region with author Julia della Croce & Venetian host and captain Mauro Stoppa

Acclaimed by the Herald Tribune, The New York Times, Condé Nast Traveler, Financial Times, Saveur, The Times (London), The Guardian, and many other prominent food and travel publications

May 18-24 6 days

Sail on our historic vessel for an unforgettable tour of Venice and its lagoon’s lesser-known islands. Journey on to the Brenta Riviera for a land tour of the Renaissance world of Andrea Palladio, one of history’s greatest architects. See Villa Foscari aka “Malconta,” Villa Pisani, and other UNESCO World Heritage sites. Dine with a countess in her ancestral palace. Visit the medieval charms, art riches, and famous markets of Padua. Enjoy superb local wines and the delicate cuisine of the provinces and be amazed at the cultural and gastronomic richness of the Veneto region. Euros 5,800.

September 14-20

Sail Venice and its lesser known islands for a unique insider’s tour of the fabled city and its enchanting lagoon. Our beautifully restored vessel is one of the few remaining purpose-built flat-bottom boats left that were designed during the time of the doges to navigate Venice’s 100 islands and 150 canals. Our generous host and his able crew will draw you into the Venice of yesterday. Lunch at anchor on the quiet lagoon, and enjoy 4 days of island-hopping followed by 3 days in Venice proper with expert native guides at your side. Euros 6,200 (double occupancy)

English spoken by our expert crew and local guides.

Rates and Particulars:

  • 6,200 Euros per person including the last night (7 nights) or 5,800 Euros for 6 nights for accommodations as detailed, breakfasts, lunches and dinners as described, private visits as per itinerary, all entrance fees, cooking lessons during our journey at your discretion, the service of your tour guide(s). Rates based on double occupancy; 20% more for single occupancy.
  • 10% deposit upon reservation, refunded if the minimum of 6 guests is not reached.
  • 40% upon confirmation, the balance 30 days before departure.
  • Minimum 6 guests. Maximum, 10 guests.

*Price covers meals, overnight accommodations in first-rate inns and hotels, guides, cooking lessons, and museum fees.

Not Included

  • Flights, travel insurance, items of personal expenditure (e.g. telephone calls, laundry etc.), discretionary gratuities to boatmen and guides, government levies or taxes introduced after publication of this program).
  • Please note that if circumstances beyond our control necessitate some alteration to the itinerary shown, you will be notified of any such changes as soon as possible.

Contact: For more information and reservations: Write to Mauro Stoppa at the following email address info@cruisingvenice.com. For more information about me, go to www.juliadellacroce.com. You can email me at julia@juliadellacroce.com with any questions you might have.

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Oct 042019
 

Dear Hungry Readers, Because many of you have asked, here’s the itinerary for our new 2020 7-day culinary sailing tour in collaboration with Venetian host Mauro Stoppa. This will be a cultural and culinary exploration of the Venetian lagoon and the Brenta Riviera. Boats and traditional means of transport make for a unique journey in one of Italy’s most historically, culturally and gastronomically rich regions. This is a variation of our original tour of Venice and the lagoon islands (that will be offered once again, September 14-20—itinerary to come). OVERVIEW The spring 2020 journey begins onboard the Eolo, the restored historic sailing vessel owned by […more…]

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Join Our New Adventure: Tour of Venice and the Brenta Riviera, May 18-24, 2020
Mar 112019
 

On September 12, 2019, Venetian host and Captain Mauro Stoppa of the vessel, Eolo, and I will shove off for a singular culinary and cultural tour of Venice and its lesser known islands. She is one of the few remaining purpose-built, flat-bottom boats left that were designed during the time of the doges to navigate this fabled city of 100 islands and 150 canals. Here is our itinerary, offering our guests an intimate experience for cruising by day, and first-rate accommodations in historic inns and hotels at night. We invite you to come on board for three days of island hopping, followed by […more…]

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Book Early for a Unique Exploration of Venice and its Lagoon Islands, September 12-18
Jan 112019
 

What: Slow food and slow travel in Veneto, Italy Where: Culinary & cultural tour of Venice and its lagoon islands, and the Brenta Riviera When: April 29-May 5, 2019—6 days, 7 nights. Price: Euros 5,800. Price covers meals, overnight accommodations in first-rate inns and hotels, guides, cooking lessons and museum fees. Hosts: Best-selling National Geographic author Julia della Croce and architect-photographer Nat Hoyt partnering with Venetian host, captain Mauro Stoppa. Deadline for signing up: January 30, 2019 Reservations: info@cruisingvenice.com Questions?: Contact julia@juliadellacroce.com SPRING TOUR April 29-May 5, 2019 Itinerary We have 4-8 spots left on our historic sailing vessel that will […more…]

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January 30 Deadline to Sign Up for Spring Sailing Tour of Venice & the Brenta Riviera
Sep 072018
 

Dear Hungry Readers, Here’s the itinerary for our new 2019 7-day collaboration with Venetian host Mauro Stoppa. This will be a cultural and culinary tour of the Venetian lagoon and the Brenta Riviera. Boats and traditional means of transport make for a unique journey in one of Italy’s most historically, culturally and gastronomically rich regions. This is a variation of our original tour of Venice and the lagoon islands (that will be offered once again, September 12-18—itinerary to come). The spring 2019 journey begins onboard the Eolo, the restored historic sailing vessel owned by our host. We’ll take off from the lagoon islands and sail […more…]

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Announcing: Our Exciting New Tour of Venice and the Brenta Riviera, April 29-May 5, 2019
May 282018
 

John Ruskin once described this watery city as a ‘ghost upon the sands of the sea, so weak—so quiet–so bereft of all but her loveliness’…. [153 years] later, he would be more likely to compare this packed tourist magnet to a shopping mall during the sales season than to a shadowy mirage…. But Ruskin’s Venice still exists…. Sitting on a historic fishing boat on a recent July evening, with the sun setting over the island of Torcello and the sound of the gull cries splitting the silence of the seemingly endless lagoon, a visitor might even get a sense of […more…]

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Sail Venice and its Lagoon This Fall
May 092018
 

Forget churches—try the lagoon with a view.  A trip on the Eolo reveals a side of [Venice] few tourists ever see. . . . It’s a fascinating exploration of local history and folklore, gourmet cooking lessons in the galley and romantic meals on deck. —Rachel Spencer, Financial Times While we make plans to launch our 2018 harvest tours of the Venetian lagoon, host Mauro Stoppa has been busy getting the Eolo ready for the sail. Anyone who has hung around marinas knows that that means having your boat in dry-dock for barnacle scraping, repair and maintenance after the previous sailing season’s wear and tear. In our […more…]

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What's Happening in Venice...
May 072018
 

Dear Hungry Reader, Because so many of you have written to me to ask for stories and recipes that were first published in the now defunct Zester Daily (sadly gone the way of so many other high quality food publications), I’ll be posting them here. Subscribe to my blog (on this page, upper right) if you haven’t already and little by little, they’ll all come your way. Sincerely, Julia You can always judge the quality of a cook or a restaurant by roast chicken. So wrote Julia Child in Mastering the Art of French Cooking. It was a bold statement, but it reflected a certain […more…]

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For the Ultimate Roast Chicken, Go French!
Dec 232017
 

Dear Hungry Readers and Lovely Eolo Guests, If you’ve wondered why you haven’t heard from me recently, I’ve been immersed in a big book project this year (stay tuned for senstional images from all over Italy). In the meantime, my sailing tours of Venice and its exquisite lagoon, done in tandem with Venetian host Mauro Stoppa on his historic sailboat, continued in spring and autumn. Here’s a photo taken on deck in September as we glided past one of the hundreds of islands enclosed in this little sea, so pristine and still—a side of La Serenissima that so few people, natives and visitors alike, ever see. Additional posts […more…]

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Holiday Greetings from Julia & Mauro
Aug 292017
 

If you imagine that Venice has become all about cruise ships, crowds, and tourist traps, you’ve never seen the real Venice I know. It is the Venice behind the spectacle. I can take you there, on a 7-day, 6-night culinary-sailing tour with no more than ten guests. Together with Venetian native Mauro Stoppa, long-time friend and owner of the Eolo, a restored historic fishing boat, I’ll show you Venice in a respectful way—the unfrequented islands, the natural life on the silent lagoon, the nooks and crannies of native dwellers. And along the way, you’ll feast on the bounty of the lagoon, its fish and […more…]

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Lost Venice is Best Seen By Boat: A Diary in Pictures