Costa Cruises marks the advent of ‘slow cruising’ with the introduction of its Costa neoCollection Mediterranean cruises.
Available on the line's smaller ships bound for destinations off-the-beaten-track, the first of these cruises will be combined with the Festival of Mediterranean Cuisine, a special programme devised in collaboration with Università di Scienze Gastronomiche di Pollenzo (Cuneo, Italy), as a tribute to the Mediterranean gastronomic heritage.
The academic institution was set up by Carlo Petrini, the founder of Slow Food, a global grassroots movement created to counter the rise of fast food and to work towards goals of sustainable foods and promotion of local small-scale producers that safeguard local traditions and high quality products.
The Festival of Mediterranean Cuisine, which will be held from April 11 to May 25 in conjunction with the 12-day Hidden treasures of the Mediterranean cruises on Costa neoRiviera, which offers a gastronomic journey in the places where these culinary treats were first conceived including Liguria (Savona) to Provence (Toulon), Catalonia (Barcelona), Sicily (Porto Empedocle), Malta (La Valletta) and Campania (Salerno).
The programme also offer guests different events linked to the appreciation of typical local food and wine. There are food and wine seminars and tasting of PDO (protected designation of origin) olive oil from five Italian regions, preserves made from local orchard produce, as well as wines and sweets typical of the coastal areas and islands visited. In Salerno, pasta makers from the Amalfi Coast will give a practical demonstration of the traditional method of preparing fusilli.
Guests also have the chance to indulge in food and wine tasting, dinners in typical local restaurants and exclusive neo experience shoreside excursions for small groups of less than 25 people, specially devised in line with the company's new slow cruising philosophy.
For more information see www.costacruises.co.uk