Two Seas: Kayaking Italy Coast to Coast
A Unique Kayaking Adventure Across Central Italy
When North Americans think about a cross-country trip, it usually means several long days of driving. In Italy, the crossing takes less than four hours. Our new Two Seas crosses Central Italy from the Tyrrhenian Sea to the Adriatic Sea and combines memorable paddling on both coasts with a spectacular route on Europe's largest volcanic lake. This coast-to-coast journey is the quintessential kayaking and culture trip that provides an authentic experience of Italy's micro regionality shaped by millennia of history. The many regional differences extend to and beyond dialect, food, wine, landscape, and style. Two Seas is an unrivaled off-the-beaten-track experience of Central Italy as we paddle two very different Seas from the seldom-visited Silver Coast of Tuscany to the Conero Riviera of Le Marche, now widely regarded as the "new Tuscany."
Maremma the Silver Coast of Tuscany
Explore a Tuscany that few visitors see. The Maremma coastline has a history that goes back to before the Etruscans. Dominated by the headland of Monte Argentario, kayaking the Siver Coast is characterized by clear blue waters, hidden beaches, and impressive sea caves along a shoreline dotted with fortresses and watch towers that once guarded against attacks by Barbary Pirates. Ashore is a rich agrarian culture that produces a bounty that, combined with fresh seafood, supports a distinctive and compelling regional cuisine.
Lago Bolsena - The Lake You Can Drink
Lago Bolsena, Europe's largest volcanic lake, is nestled in the heart of Central Italy and is known for its pure crystal-clear waters and submerged Etruscan ruins. The lake is surrounded by lush hills and medieval towns, offering stunning views. The clear waters reflect the sky and the surrounding landscape, creating a tranquil and picturesque kayaking. Around Lago Bolsena are several ancient towns and archaeological sites. We will explore ancient cities like Capodimonte and Marta, which boast historical significance and beautiful architecture. We stay in the town of Bolsena, which is rated as one of Europe's most beautiful towns by Forbes magazine.
Marche - The Conero Riviera
Kayaking along the Conero Riviera on the Adriatic coast of the Marche region of Italy is a splendid and unique experience. The Conero Riviera, known for its crystal-clear waters and stunning natural scenery, is a perfect paddling counterpoint to the Tuscan coast. The picturesque coastline is dominated by dramatic views of the Monte Conero, a prominent limestone mountain that rises majestically above the Adriatic Sea. The shoreline here is a fascinating mix of rugged cliffs, secluded coves, and beautiful pebbly beaches often inaccessible by land.
One of the many highlights of the paddling route is the famous Due Sorelle beach, known for its twin rock formations jutting out of the sea. The biodiversity of the marine life here is also a treat, with the clear waters offering a glimpse of a vibrant underwater world.
Ashore, the scenery of Marche is sublime and diverse, with rolling hills crowned by medieval villages, Roman ruins, and a colorful patchwork of fields, orchards, and vineyards.
The Renaissance Magic of Urbino
Set majestically in the rolling hills of the Marche, Urbino offers breathtaking views of the surrounding countryside, marked by a patchwork of fields, olive groves, and vineyards. Renowned for its cultural heritage and stunning beauty, Urbino is a UNESCO World Heritage Site, celebrated for its historical legacy and role as a center of the Italian Renaissance. The Palazzo Ducale is a Renaissance masterpiece known for its harmonious façade and exquisite interior courtyards. The historic center of Urbino is a testament to Renaissance urban planning, characterized by its winding streets, beautiful old buildings, and the impressive Duomo (Cathedral) of Urbino. The cityscape is a picturesque blend of medieval and Renaissance architecture, creating a visually stunning environment, and our visit here is a fascinating dive into Marche's history and cultural heritage.
Culture, Food and Wine Across Italy
This trip offers special insight into the micro-regionality that characterizes the truest Italian cuisine. We explore the culture through food and wine and do it in the style we've brought to all of our Italian trips, combining memorable kayaking routes with an insider's view of culture, cuisine and "La Dolce Vita". As always, we've handpicked accommodations, dining experiences, and wine tastings that hit just the right note. The Caldero fish stew of Tuscany's coast has clear elements of French bouillabaisse but with a distinctly Italian flavor and the richly diverse food of Marche that has been influenced by its neighbors – Emilia-Romagna and Umbria, creating a blend of mountain and coastal culinary traditions including Vincisgrassi” (a type of Marche lasagna), “Olive all’Ascolana” (stuffed olives), and “Brodetto di Pesce,” a local fish and tomato-based stew. We'll also have a chance to compare and contrast parings of the Vermentino wine of coastal Tuscany and the Verdicchio of Marche. Both are beautifully balanced white wines distinctive to their region and particularly good with seafood.
Larry Stephenson and Allison Thiel, MN View Trips
I can't tell you how highly we hold you and your company in terms of quality experiences, in terms of paddling, but much more so in terms of cultural experiences. We just feel that you always provide something that nobody else in the travel world provides.
— Cinque Terre and the Riviera, September 2019
— Italian Lake District, September 2018
— Tuscany, September 2017
— Venice and the Laguna, September 2016
— Wild Sardinia, September 2015
National Geographic Award
Tofino Expeditions was the highest rated sea kayaking adventure travel company in a National Geographic Adventure survey of international outfitters based on:
- Quality of Service
- Spirit of Adventure