Musical History Comes to Life!
Join Us in

Northern Italy
March 19-27, 2020


From Milan, Cremona, and Bologna to Mantua and Parma...

Spend nine days immersed in the culture of Northern Italy this spring.

Together we'll visit some of the most influential centers of instrument making and follow the evolution of the principal instrumental families - the bowed strings for which Italy is most renowned, as well as keyboards, plucked strings, woodwinds, and brass. And we'll enjoy music performed on these period instruments.

We'll also explore the thriving cities of Milan, Cremona, and Bologna - take a private tour of a modern luthier's shop and try the instruments for yourself. Plus, taste the finest Prosciutto di Parma, Culatello di Zibello, and silky handmade egg pasta. This is a trip you don't want to miss!

Download the Complete Itinerary
Robert Adelson is professor of organology and music history at the Conservatoire de Nice. Between 2005 and 2016, he was Curator of France’s second-largest collection of historical musical instruments, housed in the Musée du Palais Lascaris in Nice. In 2019, he was awarded the Frances Densmore Prize from the American Musical Instrument Society. His numerous publications include The History of the Erard Piano and Harp in Letters and Documents, 1785–1959 (Cambridge University Press, 2015).

A Note From Our Guide...

In all my years as professor, researcher, and curator of musical instrument museums, the Music in Northern Italy tour stands out as a highlight. Nowhere else can one find such a concentration of important string collections, with many rare instruments restored to playable condition. Thanks to exceptional arrangements with these museums and private collectors, the tour participants have the unique opportunity to hear many of these instruments up close and to dialogue with the specialists and musicians.

The heart of the tour is Cremona, home to so many legendary luthiers, and the March 2020 tour will have the added benefit of a new temporary exhibition that just opened at the Museo del Violino, effectively doubling the number of rare instruments by Amati, Guarneri and Stradivari on display. The informal atmosphere of the tour encourages many stimulating discussions about the evolution of particular instrument types, the differences between historical instruments and today's models, and the ways in which these instruments can yield precious information about how music was played and heard in the past. Each time I lead this tour, I return home with a more profound understanding of string instruments, their history, and their music.

Details & Logistics

The trip cost includes services of your dedicated guides; travel by private coach and train travel from Bologna to Milan; 4-star accommodations; breakfasts, 3 lunches, 6 dinners with wine, water, and coffee; tips and taxes; plus entry to all the museums, sites, and other captivating events and attractions detailed in the itinerary.

Our expert guide is Robert Adelson, Professor of Music History and Organology at the Conservatoire de Nice. Adelson has published widely and is a recent recipient of the Densmore Prize from the American Musical Instrument Society.

Space is limited. To secure your spot, you will need to complete the registration form and submit payment in full.

Double Occupancy


Single Occupancy


Please note, payment will be made in Pounds Sterling. Price above is reflective of the exchange rate to USD in June 2019.

Why Travel with Stringletter?

Focus on Music

We plan itineraries that let you experience music like a local. And, we always include behind-the-scenes tours, visits, lectures, and events that give you a rich cultural and historical context.

Expert Guides

The high editorial standard you rely on from our magazines carries off the page. You can count on us to take you to popular attractions, but our expert guides will take you off the beaten track, too.

Like-minded Travelers

Traveling with the focus on music means you’ll be part of an enthusiastic group that has a lot in common. We promise you’ll make new friends and enjoy the company of your fellow musical travelers.

But don't just take our word for it...
Testimonials from past Stringletter Travelers:

“I have traveled a lot, but never before with a focus on music. That focus – both in terms of the program and in terms of my fellow travelers – made this particular trip into one I will never forget. I am still processing all we saw and heard! Just go!” – Monica D.

“I could not have enjoyed the guidance and information I received on the memorable trip on my own. I am grateful to the Stringletter staff for a really meaningful experience.” – Mark B.

“I’ve traveled extensively but never before as part of a tour. The advantages were many: access to multiple types of music and dance performances, expert lecturers, a proficient translator, and convenient transportation ... Plus, because most of the tour members were musicians, it was easy to meet and enjoy like-minded fellow travelers.” – Nancy L.

Space is limited, register today!

To download a PDF of the complete itinerary, please click here.

We have partnered with our friends at Martin Randall Travel to offer this unique itinerary. Please contact them to reserve your spot:

Martin Randall Travel offers an online registration form for your convenience. Click here to register.

For further information or to ask a question about the Stringletter Travel program, please contact Lyzy Lusterman at
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