Riccione Italy April 7-14, 2018

Join me (Joanne Hastie) in the place that inspires my art: Italy. Be inspired by wandering hilltop castles and the landscapes of Italy.

We will sketch alleyways, castles and landscapes while sipping espresso. I am inspired by the history, culture and scenery of Italy and I am thrilled to share my art process with you during this 7 day adventure trip.


  • See all 6 Mosaic’d churches in Ravenna, a UNESCO World Heritage Site
  • Visit & sketch the places where Michelangelo sketched in the late 1490’s in Bologna
  • Wander the house where Renaissance artist Rafael’s grew up
  • Tour the castle that inspired a chapter in Dante’s Divine Comedy
  • Paint while watching the sunset over a cliff-top castle
  • Ride a bicycle along the beach to a Roman Bridge built in 10AD that is still in use today!
  • Sketch alongside Canadian artist Joanne Hastie & experience how the Italain countryside inspires her art

Gradara, Italy

Urbino, Italy

Rimini, Italy

For Who

This trip is for both the non-artist to the seasoned painter. The focus is on getting inspired, seeing new things and working on documenting what you see.

If you have a sketching practice what could be more fun than sketching and making new friends in Italy!

If you haven’t sketched before – the best place to start drawing is while travelling when you have no other daily life distractions. Taking short-bursts of time to draw what you see is so rewarding and you remember the moment & details so much more clearly.

What’s Included

  • Food – 7 gourmet breakfasts, 7 gourmet dinners
  • Wine – included at dinner
  • Accommodation – 7 nights accommodations at Hotel Belvedere in Riccione
  • Supplies – watercolor sketchbook, pleine-air starter kit (watercolor), ink pen, eraser
  • Transportation – transportation to and from Riccione to each location

What’s Not Included

  • Food when not at the hotel (i.e. lunch or snack stops)
  • Tickets for museums, you can opt-out to wander the town & shops when we visit museums
  • Alcohol & wine outside of dinner
  • Flights


  • $3325 CAD (per person)
  • $1000 CAD for single room upgrades

Need more information? Contact



This event is partnered with Bici Gusti Gourmet Ride Italy – scroll below the cycling event to register for the painting event

Hotel Belvedere

Marina’s famous Paella

Supplies provided

Your host for the trip – Joanne Hastie


Saturday April 7 – Day 0 – Arrival & Introductions

Arrive at Belvedere in the afternoon. Let’s get to know one another over aperitvo (Italian Cocktails) at the hotel. We’ll sketch from the balcony & deck of the hotel and walk to the beach. We will have a celebratory welcome dinner at the hotel.

Sunday April 8 – Day 1 – Rimini

Let’s start exploring! Each guest will get a hybrid bike & helment from the hotel, bike 10km north along the beach to Rimini, we will wander the town & sites including churches filled with art and Roman ruins dating back to 10 AD.

Monday April 9 – Day 2 – Gradara & Urbino

We will wander the castle that inspired the writing of Dante, then sketch one of Italy’s most well preserved Medieval towns and walk the city wall.

In the afternoon we head Urbino, a UNESCO World Heritage town. We will visit the palace museum, wander the city where painter Rafael grew up including his house. Stopping to sketch as we go.

Tuesday April 10 – Day 3 – Ravenna

Experience the sparkle of Byzantine Mosaics! We will see the mosaics of Ravenna and stop for lunch to have traditional Piadina’s of the Romagna area.

Wednesday April 11 – Day 4 – Bologna

Road trip day! Let’s paint the warm colored-alley ways of Bologna that have inspired numerous paintings for me. The immense history of the area comes alive in Bologna when you sit and sketch. We will climb the tower, visit the cathedral, sketch in the main square, visit the market to shop for cheese and prosciutto, limoncello and grappa and find the hidden canals under the city.

Thursday, April 12 – Day 5 – San Leo

In contrast to yesterday’s urban views, today’s focus is on landscapes. We’ll explore the landscapes of the area. We will stop and visit the clifftop castle in San Leo and keep sketching the surrounding countryside.

Friday April 13 – Day 6 – San Marino & the Gothic Line

In the morning we will wander San Marino and continue to sketch and taking in the breathtaking scenery from up-high.

Then in the afternoon let’s experience Canadian history in the Italian countryside, we will visit the Gothic Line just outside Rimini with a Canadian monument.

Saturday April 14 – Day 7 – Good Bye

Morning: Check out of Hotel Belvedere


The daily schedule is subject to change due to weather and groups interest. We may join the gourmet picnics that Hotel Belvedere will be planning (which are also weather dependent), this may include wine tasting at iMuretti Farm located near Rimini or a BBQ in Spadorolo.

More Details

Click here to see my photos from my 2017 scouting trip.

Click here to see my review of Belvedere Hotel

Click here to see my 2017 sketchbook



This event is partnered with Bici Gusti Gourmet Ride Italy – scroll below the cycling event to register for the painting event

Limited Capacity – 8 people

I look forward to exploring and painting Italy with you. If you need more information please contact me at To register, click the register button scroll to the bottom of the screen (after Bici Gusti).



Pin It on Pinterest