“Looking back at Nunnery Wood’s Italian adventures over the last few years, it has been enlightening to see the students’ amazement along their various journeys to Sorrento. The incredible scenery, history, geography, volcanology and culture they have seen has allowed them to enjoy the perfect mix of education and adventure.”
Silvia Avvertenza – Operations Manager, Rayburn Tours
Following their brilliant experience, they returned in 2019 with the same goal – to learn about Italy’s ancient ruins and rumbling volcanoes.
They began their tour with a taste of Italy as they visited a local pizzeria in Naples. After they filled up on tasty Napoleon pizza, they made the trip to the local Archaeological Museum for the Naples Underground Tour. This allowed the group to travel deep beneath the historic centre of the city and explore cavities, tunnels and secret passages. Afterwards, they travelled to their accommodation in Pompeii where they enjoyed some pizza-induced down-time!
Morning broke and the moment had finally arrived. It was time to visit Mount Vesuvius National Park! Here, students got the chance to speak with the local alpine guides, before making the trek to the summit of the stratovolcano. Here, they learnt about hazard management and the potential dangers faced by the volcano’s nearby neighbours. Is there a more valuable and memorable experience for students? We think not.
Following the trek, they enjoyed a well-earned lunch back in Pompeii before visiting the ancient city’s archaeological site. Here, the group learnt first-hand about the eruption which showered Pompeii with ash, stones and pumice. They even got to see the plaster casts of the victims, which truly brought the historical events to life.
They may have conquered Vesuvius, but the group’s volcanic exploration didn’t end there! Day 3 saw the group visit the supervolcano located west of Naples – Phlegraean Fields. Declared a regional park in 2003, the caldera is a great visit to observe the fumaroles and mud puddles from the various viewpoints in the park. The group took the chance to listen to the geographical overview at this point, learning about the number of craters and edifices that are found above and below water.
Flavian Amphitheatre was the next visit before the coach departed for Sorrento. The first stop was a local gelateria and restaurant. Yes you guessed it, ice cream time! They began by eating an authentic Italian lunch before making and tasting their very own ice creams. As you can imagine, this was a very popular moment in their Italian adventure!
Keeping in line with the foodie theme, the following day consisted of a guided tour of Fondo Galatea Working Farm. This family-run farm produces some of the finest food in the region, including meat, cheeses, jam and olive oil. Not only did students get to sample and make their own pizzas, but they learnt the importance of both the climate and soil in growing Mediterranean crops.
Leisure activities tend to make the biggest impact with groups on tour. That’s why we try to include a balanced mixture of both educational and social activities so the group can have the best experience possible! This means they have a healthy mixture of educational and non-educational activities which helps them to remain engaged and happy on tour.
Following pizza making, the group moved on to Amalfi for free time, sightseeing and souvenir shopping!
Day 5 marked the end of the group’s Italian expedition, spending their final day in Rome. Among the highlights were the Pantheon, Trevi Fountain and, of course, the Colosseum. These three stops gave the group a long-lasting impression of both the history and culture of this fantastic city. They also gained a unique insight into ancient Rome, including its gladiators and Roman aqueducts.
Overall, the group had a fantastic time. They enjoyed…
‘’The same great service and experience’’
…as their previous trip. When asked about choosing Rayburn Tours, they spoke of the excellent service we provided and said we were reliable in all aspects of their journey to Sorrento. This supports the wonderful comments that came from Silvia (our Operations Manager) during her time away with the group last year. She spoke of why we all work so hard at Rayburn Tours, which we feel is a fitting way to say goodbye to the group. Until next year Nunnery Wood!
‘’I see clearly why we care so much and why we all work so hard at Rayburn: for those very moments; the moments we see these students developing and learning, for those ‘penny-dropping’ and ‘wow’ moments.’’