Genius Loci Travel offers a large range of independent or ‘self guided’ walking & hiking tours.
Which you can do with whom you want, at the pace you want, at the time you want. Private departures can be planned on any date. You are the guide!
With our detailed Route Notes & Maps you will be able to walk any route. In the meanwhile we take care of your luggage and select the perfect accommodation for you.
Choose from the best selection of hikes, walks & treks in Italy! Coastal walking, Mountain Hiking, City Treks & Pilgrim routes. There is something for every taste.
Why a walking tour with Genius Loci Travel?
One of the strengths of Genius Loci Travel is the design of each tour. A Genius Loci independent walking tour takes you along carefully selected routes, making sure that you see the best that each area has to offer, with an optimal mix between walking & sightseeing, culture & nature.
According to the area, on some tours the focus is more the hiking, on others the cultural aspects. But all our tours provide the best possible mix between culture & nature. Not one single day is the same on our walking tours!
Many of the tours we have developed over the last decade, have been sold and are still being sold by specialised tour operators worldwide. In fact, it’s likely that you’ve been on one of our tours already!
And, last but not least: on a tour from Genius Loci Travel ‘Independent’ does not mean unsupported! It is good to know that our local staff is always available, and just a phone call away.
Type of tour
Our tours find the right balance between continuous walking routes and those that are centrally based. Usually you change accommodation about every 2/3 days on our tours. This avoids the hassle of having to change hotel every day, while allowing you to follow a continuous route through the area, without having to travel each day to the start of your walk
On our independent tours, you are free to follow the trail at your own pace. We transport your luggage, so you don’t need to carry much more than your camera, water and perhaps a picnic lunch. You can leisurely enjoy your walk knowing that your baggage will be waiting for you at your next accommodation.
Each of our tour programmes is flexible, you can normally start your walk on any day during the season, and you can add on extra days where and when you desire, for resting or sightseeing, as well as to opt for tour extensions in nearby areas.
N.B. Please note that on some of our trips you will occasionally need to carry overnight gear (e.g. when staying in a mountain hut). On some tours, when you are a based at two or three walking centres, you may need to personally transfer your baggage, on public transport, between different centres.
Walking or Trekking ?
Most of our holidays are relatively relaxed walks, seen as a means of discovery, not a goal in itself . We like to enjoy the outdoors, with plenty of variety during our travels. Some areas – like the Dolomites – invite more challenging walking, others allow for easy strolling.
Our staff will always be able to inform you about the difficulty of each tour, and in our route notes you’ll find the necessary information about the easier and/or harder options for each day walk. And of course, if you wish, you could also opt out for a day.
The walking is not only fun, it is also generally the best way to discover the place we are visiting. Is there a better way to sense the silence and isolation of the Amalfi Coast, than walking along the wonderful trails, suspended between the sky and the sea? How can you enjoy Mount Etna more, than walking almost by yourself over the rim of a crater? And what about a full immersion in the superb Tuscan countryside?
We strongly believe walking is the ideal pace to meet people, absorb the countryside and make fascinating personal discoveries. Trains, ferries and all kinds of local transport are also used to vary the pace and perspective of your travels. The key difference between a Genius Loci Travel trip and most mainstream tours is that with us you immerse yourself more in the destination, get to know special places and local people.
We are proud of our selection of accommodations. As stated by some of our clients: one of our strengths lies in the careful selection of the right accommodation for the type of tour, the type of clients and the type of area. Not the obvious places, but small, well-situated, often family-run places, with a personal welcome. Our accommodations are often small hotels, but can be wonderful Bed & Breakfasts (yes, this is the Italian word!), as well as agriturismo’s, rural accommodations, which are often real countryside relais. All are chosen for their accessibility to the trail and for the warmth of their welcome. Many are located in historical buildings or placed in exceptional spots, blended into the surrounding landscape.
All give you the feeling of being truly in Italy, and not in just another hotel anywhere in the world. All represent the best price/quality ratio the area offers and they all employ local people.
On the whole and for these reasons we try to avoid chain and big name hotels. Many of our hoteliers are walkers themselves and take an active and helpful interest in our clients’ progress. Most of the places we have been using for years and we have a good working relationship with the owners. On most of the tours you will find that accommodations will vary somewhat within the hospitality quality grades, which adds a touch of character to the region or the country that they are passing through.