The Kingdom of Truffles and Barolo

Vineyards, Village Hikes, and Cuisine of Piemonte


With its seductive blend of alpine peaks, isolated wild valleys, medieval castle-topped villages, sumptuous cuisine, and fertile vineyards giving rise to some of the finest wines in Italy, the Langhe region of Piemonte is an enchanting arena for our hiking and cultural adventure with Trip Leader Stefano Baldi. Stefano is known to appreciate a thing or two about fine wines and cuisine, and on this adventure, we’ll savor the region’s gastronomic pleasures and hike through its verdant countryside. Special “insider” experiences are featured throughout: we’ll taste fantastic Barolo, Barbera, and Dolcetto wines in ancient underground cellars, sample outstanding cuisine—Piemonte is, after all, the home of the Slow Food movement—and search for truffles with a trifolao (truffle hunter) and his faithful dogs. We’ve planned our trip for harvest time, when the vineyards are at their most beautiful in tones of russet and gold, and truffle festivals are in full swing. Expect to become a wine and truffle connoisseur by trip’s end!

Itinerary at a Glance

Days 1-2
Saluzzo / Valley Hike

From the picturesque medieval hilltown of Saluzzo, we head to the Val Varaita on the border of France and Italy. The wild valleys of the southern Alps are a wonderful destination for our hike amid the mountain meadows and deep forests of the southern Alps. A visit to a local beekeeper ends our day on a sweet note!

Antiche Mura
Saluzzo, Italy
Days 1 to 2 (2 nights)
Days 3-4
Vineyard Hikes / Dogliani

Enchanting villages dot the countryside, and our hikes bring us along trails leading through fertile vineyards and along high ridges with far-reaching views of the entire countryside. We explore the 12th century Castello della Manta, with its exquisite 15th century frescoes depicting scenes of rural and courtly life, and we overnight at the Poderi Einaudi, where we visit the cellar and taste their wines, including Dolcetto and the famous, full-bodied Barolo, respectfully known as the “King of Wines.”

Poderi Luigi Einaudi
Dogliani, Italy
Days 3 to 4 (2 nights)
Days 5-6
Barolo / Cooking Class / Truffle Hunting / “Library of Wine”

Our hike traverses rolling countryside and brings us to the wine town of Barolo, which gave its name to this kingly wine, and we'll taste wines at the local Museum of Wine. We’ll enjoy a cooking class, savor our efforts at lunch, then go truffle hunting with a trifolao (truffle hunter) and his dogs. One of our dinners is in Bra at the Osteria Boccondivino, the small local trattoria where the Slow Food movement was born in 1986. Before dinner, we taste wines in our hotel’s 19th century cellars, where its Banca del Vino collects, like a library, the best wines of Italy.

Albergo Dell'Agenzia
Pollenzo, Italy
Days 5 to 7 (3 nights)
Days 7-8
Hike to Alba / White Truffles

From the tiny town of Barbaresco, we hike to Alba, famous for its white truffles. First settled in Neolithic times and once a powerful city-state that rivaled nearby Asti, Alba is best explored on foot. In October, there are many wonderful festivals and markets celebrating the truffle, and we’ll enjoy a truffle-based lunch here. On the April departure, we'll attend the Vinum Alba, a well known wine festival. Depart on Day 8 via Milan.

Albergo Dell'Agenzia
Pollenzo, Italy
Days 5 to 7 (3 nights)



Hike through the vineyards of the Langhe, Piemonte’s premier wine region
Savor fine cuisine—Piemonte is the home of the Slow Food movement—and dine at the restaurant where it all began
Taste full-bodied wines, including Barolo, the “King of Wines” (and the “wine of kings”)
Go truffle hunting with a trifolao and his dogs
Delightful accommodations include a restored palace


Length: 8 days
Cost From: $4895  
Arrive: Torino, Italy
Depart: Milan, Italy
Lodging: 7 nights hotels
Meals: All meals included except 1 dinner as indicated in the Detailed Itinerary (B=Breakfast, L=Lunch, D=Dinner)
Activity: Hiking / Trekking, Culinary, Cultural Adventures
Trip Level:

A mix of moderate hikes and walks, 2-4 hours a day, van support (for luggage or if you wish to skip a day's hike)