You might not think of Easter as an essential time to travel, but in Southern Italy it’s a different story entirely.
Easter here is a week-long religious celebration: la Santa Pasqua, (pasqua is the Italian word for Easter), and you’re likely to spot colorful chocolate eggs in shop windows, happen upon a parade (Jesus and Virgin Mary statues make an appearance), and sample traditional Easter cuisine including a sweet bread called colomba, or dove (the baked good is made in the shape of a dove).
At The Family Coppola Hideaways’ Palazzo Margherita hotel in Bernalda (Francis Ford Coppola’s grandfather grew up in the quaint town), you’ll be fully immersed in Easter festivities. In fact, the hotel is offering a five-day Easter package for €950/person, which includes a cooking lesson, a screening of a classic Italian film, guided tours to museums and restaurants, a visit to the Ghost Town of Craco which was abandoned in the ’60s, and participation in Easter egg hunts and traditional processions.
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The hotel itself is a relic; inside the 19th-century palazzo, flanked by the historic and culturally rich cities of Metapontum and Matera, you’ll spot exotic tiling, hand-painted fresco ceilings, and the property’s original marble floors.
This is not your typical family vacation. In fact, a popular phrase here is, “Natale con i tuoi, Pasqua con chi vuoi,” which translates to: “Christmas with your family, Easter with whomever you want,” so why not spend it with the Coppolas?