Australians can take their mind, eyes and soul to Italy this April as Academy Travel, the leading provider of small group cultural tours, presents Italy Week. From April 6 – 9 2021, history buffs, travel enthusiasts and Italophiles alike can be virtually transported to Italy’s past and present with an online program that includes keynote interviews with leading Australian experts, Live on Site walking tours of key historical and artistic sites, stand-alone lectures and short courses.
The stimulating program will run from 9:30am to 7:30pm each day and is presented by an established network of academic talent across Australia and Italy who are expertly placed to take participants on a vicarious journey through Italy’s fascinating history, art and culture. PDF Program
“With both our physical tours and virtual experiences, Italy remains a perennially popular destination due to its incredibly rich history that has left it brimming with ancient and medieval sites, Renaissance art and architecture and beautiful natural scenery to top it off. While a visit remains a distant possibility for now, we hope Italy Week satisfies the thirst for overseas travel with an intellectual adventure through a major centre of history and culture,” says Academy Travel Director Robert Veel.
Bringing a profound depth of knowledge to the program, leading Australian experts will kick off each day with a keynote interview during which they will explore different chapters of Italy’s past, such as the archaeological, political and cultural significance of Pompeii and the enduring cultural influence of the Middle Ages. Scholars include Associate Professor Kathryn Welch and Emeritus Professor Nerida Newbigin from the University of Sydney, forensic archaeologist Dr Estelle Lazer and head of Art History and Theory at the National Art School, Dr Michael Hill.
Each morning, Academy Travel’s in-house lecturers will host four-part short courses on topics including Sicily’s history, the work of renowned Renaissance architect Palladio, Pompeii, Herculaneum and beyond and a two-part course on Leonardo Da Vinci. In addition to 60-minute online lectures, participants can also choose from three short courses led by experts in Italy who will take a deep dive into Michelangelo, the making of Ancient Rome and Naples, from its origins to the present.
A truly immersive experience, participants are taken on a journey to some of the most architecturally and historically significant sites in Naples, Florence, Rome and Venice through Live on Site tours. Led by experienced local guides in Italy and an in-house lecturer, the live virtual tours last 60 to 90 minutes and provide background historical context, route maps and in-depth information about the sites to ensure an academically enriching tourist experience. From your living room, travel to Hadrian’s Villa at Tivoli, the Oltrarno district of Florence, Royal Naples and Venice’s Grand Canal.
Since the COVID-19 pandemic halted Academy Travel’s physical tour operations, the company has pivoted to online learning and virtual travel experiences. As the only niche tour operator who employs its academic talent on a permanent basis, the switch to online has allowed them to keep their experts employed during the pandemic while also stimulating the culturally curious who found themselves home bound.
For a limited time, Academy Travel is offering exclusive gold and silver passes which give priority access to sessions. A gold pass is $740 and provides full access to all sessions across the four days including first preference for short courses and lectures. A silver pass is $390 and gives access to all sessions across the four days except the morning and late afternoon short courses. Gold and silver passes can be booked here.
Bookings for individual courses, lectures and Live on Site tours will be available after 16th March and can be booked here.