USA’s Iberian Insiders Since 2002

Magical Italy Destinations

“Twenty years from now, you will be more disappointed by thethings you didn’t do, than by the ones you did… Explore. Dream. Discover.”

– Mark Twain

Some 43 million tourist visit Italy each year but only a tiny fraction of world travelers will have access to our private foodie adventures in Italy. With your private group of 6+ of your favorite people, we set the stage so you enjoy the momentsyour way. With seamless planning and insider savvy, you enjoy an unforgettable Italy foodie adventure.

Italy

Italy is so well known and popular with Americans that we will include a bit less than we could. Suffice it to say that Italy is an amazingly attractive destination for the world. As with Spain and Portugal the experiences and personal connections you have access to are what allows us to promise an enriching adventure. But before we go on, we want to be very upfront here….

In Italy, even with your private trip, do expect a less authentic “Old World” experience than in Spain or Portugal. This is because, Italy is a magnet for Americans and British and so it is hard to escape big English speaking tour groups. Tourism is huge for Italy and makes up some 12% of Italy’s PIB and after Berlusconi’s festive presidency, Italy needs this income boost more than ever.

The positive side is Italians speak more English than the Spanish and you can meet other Americans everywhere you go. Just be glad you are not in that big group of 45 people!

On our 100% customized private Italy trips can include some of these very unique short list of Italian experiences like:

Visiting a morning market with a chef as he shops for that day´s meals. You then return with him to his restaurant and can watch as they prepare your lunch.

Touring the Amalfi coast by private yacht with your own skipper

Private visits to wine estates learn about the traditions and of course taste vino.

Enjoy wines such as Barolos, Brunellos or Barbarescos or many others

Savor the Pesto, Parmigiano, Buffalo Mozzarella, Truffles, and Super Tuscans.

Connect with nature on a family farm with olive grove and fine fruit & vegatables

Explore the Medici’s secret city walkway & the Uffizi Gallery with our guide.

Discover the latest fashion trends and add to your wardrobe

Learn about glass blowing from an expert in Venice

Discover Leonardo da Vinci’s top works like the Last Supper.

Venice the Grand Canal and old town: Yes it is full of tourist but that is for a reason as the 2 mile windy Grand Canal passing historic bridges and ornate buildings is uniquely romantic for so many people Then you can still explore on foot as there is much to see if you are not stampeded by tour groups.

Opera in Italy: Since in the 18th century thousands of new operas were staged here. Italian opera is still world class and the fans are known as the most demanding in the world.

Shopping Milan: Experiences the Via Montenapoleone area and peruse the work of some of Europe’s most famous designers.

Mass in Saint Peter’s Basilica: St. Peter’s in the Vatican is beautiful and very ornate. It is also the Christian worlds most visible and important building with due respect to Jerusalem. A mass here is a spiritual highlight for many travelers.

Florence is one of the most picture perfect towns in the world, and interesting for wine lovers to know, has been making wine commercially since 200BC! Birthplace of Dante and Michelangelo and cradle of the Renaissance…

Roman Empire is almost alive: Yes despite centuries of looting, there is much to see of the legendary Roman Empire in Italy and in Spain. But this is the Italy section so archeological treasure-troves are found in a number of parts of Italy, especially in Sicily. Hordes of tourist flood into Pompeii, the ancient city buried by volcano Mt. Vesuvius in A.D. 79. Nearby Herculaneum, was buried by lava on that same day. One slightly lesser known spot is near Campania’s coast, Paestum. Here the Temple of Neptune is amazing and a favorite of my wife. Of course Rome has the Colosseum, the Roman Forum, the Pantheon and the Baths of Caracala. The ancient port of Rome, Ostia Antica, has been uncovered and is quite a draw for the history minded.

Milan – The energetic fashion and industrial capital of italy is the best place to enjoy wines from Lombardy and is a major hot spot for foodies with top restaurants ( Da Claudio, Latteria, Dal Bolognese, Cracco Peck have been doing a great job for a while. and the wine country of Francia corta wine region is nearby. Along with fine dining Milan offers amazing fashion shopping, and the spectacular Duomo and fine art.

Emilia Romagna is a foodie heaven. This is region includes Bologna, Modena and Parma Balsamic Vinegar, Culatello and Parma hams, Parmigiano Reggiano and Mortadella. Yes this fertile region in central northern Italy is without a doubt one the world´s top regions for gourmet food.

Bologna is an real treat for culture lovers and foodies with a huge amount of tasty temptations.The we can’t forget about Modena, where the world’s most famous and most memorable balsamic vinegar is produced and aged in a process similar to wine production. Modena is also the home of Ferrari is also in Modena which has a attractive historic old town. If you love castles, music, gourmet cheeses or fine cured ham then nearby Parma is a must-experience for you and your group of friends or family. Of course music-lovers will know that Verdi is from Parma.

Orvieto – One of the most magical cities in Umbria, Orvieto is easily visited from both Rome and nearby Tuscany. The duomo is one of the most extravagant in Italy, and combined with a tour of “underground Orvieto” (a network of labyrinthine tunnel) is a fascinating way to spend the afternoon…

Tuscany: What´s not to like about Tuscany (other than the hoards of tourist)? Enthralling Tuscany offers a wealth of reasons to visit, which is why people sometimes run into their neighborshere. Among the favorites are Siena, San Gimignano & San Miniato: Siena is for us one of the prototypical beautiful medieval hilltowns of southern Euope and is about an hour from Florence. Ideally located between Florence and Sienna, San Gimignano is also not far from the Chianti Classico wine country wine region. For fantastic white truffles San Miniato is the hub, don’t miss it if you are a true truffle lover.

Capri: The Roman emperor Tiberius choose the island Capri as his primary retreat and long term Italian president Berlusconi (a Roman emperor wannabe?) loves it too and might even buy the place one day. The dramatic beauty, seafood, wines from Campania make Capri a unforgettable place but again it can get crowded.

Sicily: The old joke is that Northern Italians go south every few years to remember they are Italianos. Yes beautiful Sicily and charming southern Italy are a big part of what makes Italy so different from Northern Europe. Sicily has been ruled by the Greeks, the Spanish (who ruled much of Italy for some 200 years), the Normans and the Moors. leaving behind an eclectic history that you can still touch today. This unique cultural history is evident in the architectural beauty here and Sicily can impact you. Among the many options are wine estates, Greek temples, Spanish Churches, Roman ampitheatres, Arab castles and for added emotion Europe´s largest volcano. Some 3000 years of heritage presented in Classical, Romanesque, Baroque and Gothic style.

The capitol of Sicily, the harbor city of Palermo reminds us somewhat of the decadent grandeur of finds in Lisbon or Rome. Then like in Seville expect great Baroque architecture, wonderful piazzas perfect for dining al fresco. The piazza Bellini goes well with the traditional Sicilian wines. The old town is quite extensive and our guided walking tours bring it to life and save your energy for the top highlights. We highly suggest a show at the neoclassical 19th century opera house, the Teatro Massimo. A key scene in The Godfather III was shot here as well. While Palermo offers a slower pace then the busy cities of central and northern Italy but only when people are not driving, because as in Spain the traffic can get a bit crazy. Our drivers take the stress away so you can enjoy the moments Italy with peace of mind

So what is your Italy fantasy?….Sophia Loren is not often available for lunch but we have many other insider ideas with our Italian partners.

What does your Italy adventure look like to you? Our trips are custom-made luxury affairs with your own driver for your group of 6+ persons. So we would be delighted love to make your dream Italy vacation a memorable reality. Contact us to get your trip planning started ASAP as we accept only 2 private Italy trips /week.

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Say Hola to Dan! Your Author & Private Tour Planner in Spain

Hola from Spain! I’m Dan O’Beirne, founder of Magical Spain.

Originally from America, I worked in the Health and Wellness sector until my desire to travel resulted in my settling in Spain. Having fallen instantly in love with the country, cultures, and people here, I have made it my mission for the last twenty years to share this passion with our clients.

Step 1

Fill out the form with the destinations, wish-list, & personal preferences for your perfect trip. If you would like your tour planner to offer some inspiration, then we are happy to provide a suggested itinerary which we can then refine with you until you are 100% delighted with it.

Step 2

Soon after receiving your request, your personal tour planner will be in touch to begin planning your custom tour. You will then receive a tailor-made tour itinerary which can be revised an unlimited number of times to ensure total satisfaction and the perfect vacation.

Step 3

Your officially licensed private guide will meet you at the pre-arranged starting point of your tour. You can count on us for 24/7 in-country support and everything else necessary for a wonderful vacation and seamless tour experience. Welcome to Iberia!

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California couple did Spain in 2021. Meg shares their experience with Magical Spain…

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Our Guaranteed Booking Promise

As Spain and Portugal return to normal following the pandemic, we at Magical Spain & Portugal continue to go above and beyond to demonstrate the health and safety of our guests is of paramount importance to our team. As you can see above, we’ve been awarded the “Safe Tourism Certified” accreditation for meeting and exceeding all government protective guidance.

The safety & protection of our clients is – and always has been – our number one priority and as such, some of the changes made are as follows:

All our luxury vehicles will undergo an overnight sanitizing and cleaning process (while drivers will also take opportunities during breaks throughout the day to wipe down the vehicles with sanitizing equipment);

We’ll be providing additional hand sanitizer and hygiene packs including masks for all travelers;

Fresh bottled water will be supplied for all passengers.

We’re not only protecting our client’s personal safety but also their wallets…

Our booking promise means that if your travel is interrupted by Covid and you’re unable to enter Spain or Portugal due to travel restrictions, we’ll provide a free rescheduling service, or if you’d prefer a refund, we’ll return all costs paid for our services as long as the cancellation comes at least seven days before your tour start date.

If you’d like more information, please contact us at hello@magicalspain.com or fill in the form below!

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Meet Your Personal Tour Planner in Spain

Hola from Spain! I’m Dan O’Beirne, founder of Magical Spain.

Originally from America, I worked in the Health and Wellness sector until my desire to travel resulted in my settling in Spain. Having fallen instantly in love with the country, cultures, and people here, I have made it my mission for the last twenty years to share this passion with our clients.

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Some Magical Customer Reviews

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California couple did Spain in 2021. Meg shares their experience with Magical Spain…

Peppermint Arches

The highlight for me was going to the restaurant you picked for us in Cadaqués. Wow, what a treat! Mercedes is an incredible guide. As I reviewed some Rick Steves videos, I noticed that your guides Jesús, and Mercedes featured in them! I’m so glad we had your company to get us to the airport or we’d be standing in Plaza Catalunya waiting to board a bus to the airport after wheeling all our luggage there from the hotel. We’re feeling bad for others but thankful for your excellent planning and the 24/7 support by Inma and Mercedes! Thanks again and we hope to return to do Andalucia and or Portugal soon!”

Anne & Sean K, (NYC)

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“I hire lawyers, doctors, tax experts …. well this year I hired the Magical Spain expert team for a custom private guided Best of Spain trip with my granddaughter…. excellent luxury hotels, perfect planning, comfortable transport, no stress and memorable experiences of Spain’s history, cuisine, wine & culture.”

Cheryl Powers (San Francisco, CA)

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Best of Spain & Portugal

“I urge everyone who values unforgettable vacations to contact Magical Spain and talk to Dan or Rachel.

Beyond the personalized planning and fine 24-7 tour support, we loved the quality and care of the licensed guides, the delicious tapas, the exotic ambiance of Seville and Granada, Madrid’s majesty and art, medieval Toledo, and meeting the olive oil estate owners, artist, chef & winemaker.”

R. Mathews, wife & friends (Northern Virginia)

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“Our private Spain guided trip was superb and stress-free, thanks for the customization.. we loved the Seville and Granada walking tours, but also the historic hilltowns, medieval castles, wine tasting with the winemaker,  tapas on the plazas, flamenco guitar…great insight and memories!”

R. Fergerson (NYC)

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Testimonials_4

“Outstanding, seamless planning with a very personalized itinerary executed perfectly…..

In Spain, we felt like VIPs as we met the winemakers in La Rioja and Ribera del Duero, the chefs, the village mayor  and flamenco dancer in Sevilla! The unique experiences and memories beat that of 4 or 5 cruises.  We will be back to do Andalucia or Portugal in a few years”

Scott & Kisha McCann (NYC)

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