Italian photographer Gianluca Colla will join this expedition.
Choose one of these projects and delve further into your area of interest:
Itinerary 17 Days
From the ancient Roman Empire to the height of the Renaissance, the land we now call
Italy has been the focal point of cultural and scientific breakthroughs for more than 2,000 years. Its iconic cities—Rome, Florence, and Venice—have each played an integral role in the history of Western civilization. Encounter a zesty modern culture and some of the world’s most important works of art and architecture through your On Assignment project—Photography or Cultural Geography—as we trace the footsteps of gladiators, emperors, and artists from Rome to Venice, stopping for a mountain adventure in the magnificent Dolomites.
There’s no better place to start an exploration of Italy than Rome, a capital city since the days of the ancient Roman Empire. Set out to discover a city where contemporary style is juxtaposed with ancient history and bustling modern life takes place among the glorious vestiges of the past. Explore legendary monuments, from the Colosseum, where gladiators and beasts once waged bloody battles, to the soaring heights of St. Peter’s Basilica, whose designers include Michelangelo and Bernini. Break into On Assignment teams to delve deeper into the layers of the city. Head to the Spanish Steps and interview locals about their favorite spot in the city. Interpret the imagery of Michelangelo’s extraordinary Sistine Chapel ceiling, or photograph famous fountains lit up at night in Trevi and Piazza Navona. Trace the evolution of architecture from the Roman Forum to the Pantheon, or venture into the cobbled lanes of Trastevere on a photo shoot.
Travel north to Florence, the birthplace of the Renaissance and the capital of Tuscany. Encounter the spectacular art of the city, including Michelangelo’s powerful marble masterpieces in the Accademia and the famous works of Botticelli and Leonardo da Vinci at the Uffizi Gallery. Climb up into the Duomo’s iconic dome for views of the city’s Renaissance architecture. Step behind the counter at one of the world’s oldest family-run gelaterias to learn how this delicious treat is made—and to sample some flavors. Or head into the Tuscan hills to visit an olive oil press near San Gimi- gniano. Photograph street musicians strumming in front of the Duomo, and take panoramic shots of the city from the ramparts of Belvedere Fortress. In the evenings, soak up the atmosphere in lively piazzas, attend a workshop on oral storytelling, or set out on a nighttime photo shoot.
We take our leave from city life and head deep into the Dolomites, a jagged range of peaks in the Italian Alps. We’ll ride a cable car high into the mountains and continue on foot, hiking two hours to our alpine home—a stone rifugio run for generations by the Angeli family. Spend days photographing shepherds on the slopes with their sheep and goats and hiking up to the snow under blue skies and abundant sun. If you wish, go rock climbing with professional guides or tackle the via ferrata or “iron road,” a climbing route equipped with cables and ladders. Learn about the first via ferrata, built in the Dolomites during World War I to help Italian troops cross the rocky, vertical mountains. Return to the rifugio late each afternoon and sit down to a delicious meal of local specialties prepared by the Angelis.
Venice is the stuff of fairy tales: an entire city afloat in a lagoon for more than 1,500 years, where
marble-clad palaces open directly onto canals and all transportation is by foot or by water. Step into a gondola or a vaporetto and explore the labyrinth of waterways. For your On Assignment project, explore Venice's evolution since its start as a swampy refuge for villagers persecuted by marauding invaders, or shoot images of local children feeding the pigeons or kicking a soccer ball in Piazza San Marco. Interview Venetians about daily life in a city defined by water, or create a series of portraits of gondoliers. Enjoy time to relax on the beaches of Lido, and take a swim in the blue Adriatic. On the last day of the program, we’ll share our final projects with the group.
We stay in small family-run hotels in the heart of Rome, Venice, and Florence, and in a dormitory-style mountain lodge high in the Dolomites.
Apply now for this program or call us for more information at 877-877-8759.