As we ring in the new year, as always, it is a time for reflection. This is particularly the case for Kristi and me this year as, 2017 will mark our 15th year of leading trips to Italy – and our last. It has been an absolutely wonderful ‘Adventure’! We have met the most extraordinary, talented, warm, fun people from all over the world. This includes our teachers and their dedicated students as well as the many Italians we work with in Orvieto who, over the years, have become treasured friends. It has been such a joy to see the creative and inspired art produced in so many different mediums in the many workshops held in our upper convent studio. Equally, it has been incredible to see how the beautiful city of Orvieto, with all the riches it has to offer, never ever fails to touch people to their very souls.
Travel changes us. And traveling slow is a particularly good way to get us to take the time to reflect – something we so rarely do. Too, our mix of art and travel is an extraordinary way to see the world and ourselves. Here are a few comments reflecting the impact our trips have had. (Unless noted, comments are from Americans.) Also below, some images of this place we love.
“I had such an amazing experience and will remember it for a lifetime. I don’t know why but Italy wasn’t really on my list of places to visit. I can say I was truly blown away by its beauty, food, and people. It truly was a soul filling experience for me. Thank you, thank you for introducing me to Orvieto and a part of Italy with such beauty and history.”
“I sit in Chester Springs listening to the rain with a different heart. Trying to hold onto myself. The world here has not changed one iota. Only me.”
“Kristi and Bill, I want to thank you once more for that Orvieto Adventure! It was an amazing experience . . . even for a European and Italy lover like me. I’ll…BE…BAAACK.”
Niki Stylianou – Greece
“This Italian journey has renewed my sense of wonder, and the joy in the everyday. I feel as if I have had more energy over the last two weeks than all the days prior for 2012.”
“I keep going through the trip in my mind (and heart) and little things keep coming back to me – which I am sure will continue for some time to come. But the one thing that has blown me away was just the incredible sense of community and kindness within the group. In the end – we all did speak the same language – the language of art. And it felt awesome.”
Jeanne-Marie Webb – South Africa
“Kristi and Bill – you have created a new little Italy slow travel monster. I was literally on your website last night just reminiscing. What an incredible experience – it gets under your skin (in a good way)!”
“My sketching trip to Orvieto changed the way I travel. I decided that less is more and that slow is better. Now, I carry my sketch-book and paints everywhere. It gives me an excuse to stop rushing, sit down and stare. Once I have drawn an object or a scene—I have really seen it and it is embedded forever in my mind. It does not matter how artless the sketch is. I have learnt that the value is in the process of sketching not in the end result. The journey is even more important than the destination.”
Mamta Mangaldas – India
“The experience was the undoubted highlight of my year. Thanks again for opening my eyes (and other, deeper parts of me) to aspects of life that I had lost touch with.”
“Well, what can I say, except that this was some of the best fun I have ever had….after cooking all this scrumptious food, we sat down in the restaurant where the staff served it to us…..along with some fabulous wine, we had a ball! I am so inspired to try some of the recipes we were given when I come home.”
Lisa Rothenbeucher – Australia
We could go on and on. We trust you can see how meaningful and rewarding this has been for us. With our small group philosophy, we have thoroughly enjoyed the privilege of hosting over 400 people on over 50 trips during the past 14 years.
Clearly, this is bittersweet. We have come to know this is the time to close this passionate chapter. We will miss it terribly. The good news is that we have a buyer who will continue the tradition into 2018 and beyond.
In the meantime, take a look at our fabulous final offerings. We would love to have you join us in our last year. It’s going to be epic, and we’d love to have you along with us as we say arrivederci.
Happy New Year to all!!
Kristi and Bill Steiner began leading “learning vacations” to Orvieto, Italy in 2003. Through Adventures in Italy they provide a cultural immersion experience. Many trips include the pursuit of some kind of creative work that complements and reinforces exploration of Italy’s culture. Relationships built over the years enable Kristi and Bill to provide experiences that a typical visitor to Orvieto never gets.
Learn more about Kristi and Bill’s trips. Stay abreast of Adventures in Italy developments, and follow Bill’s musings about travel and Italy on his blog Make Haste Slowly. View Bill’s photos of Italy, Orvieto, and other memorable places at steinerstudiophotos.com, and follow him on Instagram.
Slow Travel Tours is an affiliation of small-group tour operators who offer personalized trips in Italy, France and other European countries.