You should be planning to visit

Okay, all you folks in the US, your taxes are done.  How much are you getting back?  Well, you should be thinking about visiting Italy and us.  At the top of the blog is a tab linking to a page called travel planning.  Take a look to see some ideas.  And then look at the ‘guest house’ page to see our guest house.  We will only be here on this farm with this nice space until August, 2013.  And that time will be here in no time at all.  You need to be planning.


Here are two very affordable trips offered by the college that I graduated from in Raleigh, NC.



FALL 2012 Tuscan Intensives in Sansepolcro, Italy
Sponsored by the Office of International Programs
Meredith College

Continuing Education in Tuscany for Alumnae and Friends of the College
Our Spring 2012 Tuscan Intensives are filled, and our first participants will be traveling to Italy very soon. Come join us for one of our Fall 2012 Tuscan Intensives.

These programs have been designed especially for alumnae to give you the opportunity to participate in the Meredith College campus abroad at the Palazzo Alberti in Sansepolcro, Italy. Friends and relatives are also welcome.
September 12-27, 2012   (Includes travel days)
Instructor: Linda FitzSimons

This course will explore the basics of how to record your reflections of the environment and your experiences in Italy through both field drawings and journaling. You will learn how to develop a field drawing from on-site imagery. We will start in the classroom practicing with pencil drawings working from projected landscapes. You will use your camera to frame your composition and your digital photos to help your drawing. We will draw in a variety of beautiful Tuscan settings, either in Sansepolcro or nearby towns. The goal is not to create drawing masterpieces but to take the time to sit, visually explore and really see the environment. Drawing on site and journaling require sustained observation, which leads to a total immersion in the experience and a meditative state. You will see Tuscany in a way that few tourists do. Drawing experience is not necessary, but for those with previous drawing experience, you will have a wonderful opportunity to practice and further develop your skills with these plein air studies.  During your time in Sansepolcro, we will visit artists’ studios, experience incredible Tuscan and Umbrian views, meet many of the locals and experience events that coincide with our September stay. We will visit the picturesque medieval hilltop town of Anghiari and also Perugia, where we will explore the Galleria Nazionale dell’ Umbria. Maureen Banker will take us on a walking tour of Perugia.

October 3-16, 2012   (Includes travel days)
Instructors:  Betty Webb and John Rose

This intensive will focus on the final year of World War II during which Italy was under siege by both allied forces and the Nazis. Once we are as clear as we can be about the context, we will begin to put a human face on events by reading Alexander Stille’s Benevolence and Betrayal, an account of five Jewish families under fascism. We will learn about the brave Italians who resisted the Fascisti and the Nazis, and we will read Maria de Blasio Wilhelm’s The Other Italy. Our final book is Iris Origo’s War in Val d’Orcia, an amazing diary that will give a fuller picture of civilian life in Italy during the war. It will also occasion a group trip to La Foce, her 2000 acre estate. We will view and discuss films and visit local sites significant to the war in Italy. We will also visit the beautiful hill town of Gubbio.

Tentative Schedule
Classes may include lectures, demonstrations, visual presentations, art lessons, field trips, walking tours, visits to museums, excursions to nearby towns or any appropriate and available local cultural experiences. Times can vary depending on class schedule for the day. Those taking Two-Week Tuscan Intensives will have one and 1/2 days free for independent travel (Thursday and Friday morning) and all Intensives have Sunday mornings free.

$1275 + airfare, train & bus to Sansepolcro and personal expenses

Cost includes accommodations, 6 breakfasts and lunches, one dinner, instruction, entry fees and excursions. Some courses include additional fees for supplies or extra excursions

We have kept the costs very affordable while offering an exciting educational experience with an interdisciplinary emphasis. Each bedroom has a bathroom although not always en suite. You may also be sharing the Palazzo with semester students.

Deadline for Application and deposit: June 12, 2012 •  Enrollment maximum: 12

For more information on the Tuscan Intensives and an Application Form check out the International Programs website for a detailed brochure with all costs and information about the Palazzo Alberti and our Sansepolcro programs for students of all ages.

Contact Dr. Betty Webb, Director of  Sansepolcro Programs or Linda FitzSimons, Coordinator of Tuscan Intensives

If you would like a printed Tuscan Intensive Brochure, please email Linda FitzSimons at with your name and address. One will be mailed to you.



So these trips are something more than the usual tour of Italy.  Both offer a different way to see and experience Italy.  And both are open to ‘friends’ of Meredith too.   For your independent travel days you could stay with us or stay with us for a while before or after the program.


So give all this a thought and let me know when to expect you.


1 Comment

  1. One thing I love about the tours offered by colleges (compared to package tours at a travel agency) is that the university tours TEACH. People on them become travelers, not tourists, learning a lot about the culture and the people, not just walking in and out of myriad of churches and museums with dates thrown at them without context.

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