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The Italian Renaissance

Donors and Alumni of the Tarleton State University Honors College are invited to accompany the summer study abroad program to Urbino, Italy on June 2-13, 2018. Contact us at or 254 968-1926 for more information.

Often called “la città ideale” of the Renaissance, Urbino is a harmonious architectural work of art, a unity of city and landscape recognized by UNESCO as a World Heritage Site.  It is the birthplace of the great  Renaissance artist Raphael. The house he was born in, featuring a childhood fresco by the young Raphael, is still standing.  Urbino remains a lively center of Italian life and culture with a population of around 15,000.


You will participate with the students in the scheduled tours and excursions:  two walking tours of Urbino, an excursion on Saturday to Ravenna to see the Byzantine mosaics, and an excursion to Gradara to see the medieval castle where the ill-fated love story of Paolo and Francesca from Dante’s Inferno takes place.  There would be several additional events just for donors and alumni:  several meals at local Urbino restaurants; an excursion to a nearby farm that produces wine, olive oil, honey, and pasta; an excursion to the coast, including a meal  in a restaurant in Gabicce Monto overlooking the Adriatic; and a lunch presentation on the Italian Renaissance.  You would also have the option to sit in on a class on the art and architecture of the Italian Renaissance, as well as one on the literature of the Italian Renaissance.  And of course you would have a fair amount of free time to explore Urbino on your own, armed with a special guidebook that we’ve put together over the several  years that we’ve been going to Urbino. And of course Mallory and I can show you some of our favorite spots.  Nota bene:  This program involves a lot of walking, and Urbino is very hilly, but the good news is that you can eat and drink anything you want to and not gain any weight! 


For accommodations, you will have a choice (assuming they don't fill up!) of two hotels.  Albergo Raffaello has the best views out of the windows, and I am good friends with the owner.  It's in the heart of the old city (il centro) but a pretty steep hike up a hill to get there (maybe a half of a block).  We've stayed there several times, and it's very nice.   Albergo Italia is right off of the main piazza and on the same level, so easier to get to.  We've only seen the lobby, which is nice.  And Dr. C has friends who've stayed there and been happy with it.  If you’re reasonably fit, he'd recommend Albergo Raffaello. 


The program cost includes all tours and excursions, airport transportation from and back to Bologna, three dinners, one lunch, and hotel accommodations (breakfast included):  $1,550 per person for single occupancy or $1,400 per person for double occupancy. Your spouse, partner, or a friend is welcome.  Flight arrangements are not included.  And you'll be responsible for meals that are not provided as part of the program.


50 percent of the program cost (see above) is due when you sign up.  Final payment due April 1, 2018.


You arrange and pay for your own flight.  Dr. Clifford and Dr. Aho are flying out of DFW with the students on June 2 and arrive in Bologna on June 3 (you lose seven hours going).  A nice tour bus will pick us up at the Bologna airport and take us to Urbino, which is about two to two and a half hours by bus.   Dr. C recommends that you come on the same flight with us if you can get tickets.  We will let you know as soon as possible what flight we're taking. Or, if you don't come on the same plane, I recommend you get to Bologna earlier than the students so you can ride on the bus with the group--maybe even the day before.  Otherwise, you have to get to the train station in Bologna, take a train down the coast, then change to a bus to get to Urbino.  No train runs to Urbino.  But of course if you want to do something completely different, that's up to you, so long as you get to Urbino on the afternoon of June 3.  The "program" starts in Urbino on June 3--checking into hotel rooms around 5:30, then dinner at 8:00 at a local restaurant.  There will be transportation back to Bologna the morning of June 12.  We would recommend that you spend the night in Bologna (Dr. C can recommend a nice hotel) and fly out the next morning.  Most of the return flights leave in the early morning.  Again, if you want to do something else, that's up to you.  Bologna is the closest international airport, but you could fly into and out of another airport if you want to add something on either end of our program.