April 2-14, 2022
$8,000 USD per, person double occupancy, International Airfare INCLUDED
In collaboration with M&M Photo Tours, Inc.
This tour will let you discover two of Southern Italy’s most photogenic, fascinating, and rich in history and culture: Puglia (Apulia) and Sicily.
We have decided to focus on those two regions because they encompass, within territories that are reasonably compact, traces of historical eras that range from the neolithic settlements that were at the origin of the city of Matera, to the magnificent Greek temples of Agrigento, incredibly well-preserved mosaics of Roman villas, Arab mosques later transformed into Christian churches, Norman castles and cathedrals, medieval gothic towns, and majestic examples of Baroque architecture.
Sicily is arguably the Italian region with the most varied historical past. Over the centuries, it was ruled by Greeks, Carthaginians, Romans, Byzantines, Arabs, Normans, Swabians, French, Spaniards, and Austrians, before becoming part of the Kingdom of Two Sicilies and finally Italy, after the unification of the country in 1861.
All of those dominations left indelible traces in the region’s cultural and architectural character, sometimes stratified atop each other, like in Syracuse’s baroque cathedral – whose nave’s pillars are made from the columns of a Greek temple – or in the unique mix of Arab and Norman architectural styles present in many of the churches and palaces of Palermo.
Those with a penchant for etymology can entertain themselves trying to guess from which language Sicily’s toponyms come from. While Palermo, Syracuse, and Agrigento, to name a few, are derived from Greek names, the city of Gibellina owes its name to the Arabic “jebel”, meaning “mountain”, and the Zisa castle to “al-Aziz”, meaning “splendid”.
While Sicily is famous worldwide, also due to the many movies that were shot there, Puglia is less well-known abroad, but it has an incredible number of artistic and historical treasures to offer to the discerning visitor.
Most of them can be found in the seaside cities that dot its long coastline, like Bari, Trani, and Monopoli. Others, like the strikingly geometric building of Castel del Monte, and the unique, cone-shaped “trulli” of Alberobello, are found in the interior, characterized by wide plains and gently rolling hills.
Outside Puglia, but just a few kilometers from the regional border, lies Matera, one of the longest continuously inhabited cities in the world. The first inhabitants of Matera dug their dwellings in the side of a deep ravine and those homes have been occupied for thousands of years, making the city quite unique in the world and a Unesco World Heritage site.
By the way, did you know that Sicily boasts 7 Unesco WH sites and Puglia 4?
This tour is organized in collaboration with M&M Photo Tours, a leader in the photo tour industry. Thanks to a decade of experience in running photo tours, they know how to make things run smoothly and comfortably for everyone. I will be the guest pro on this tour, putting my knowledge of the places and my skills as a photographer and as an educator at your service during the whole time.
This tour is open to photographers of any skill level. My aim, during the entirety of the tour, will be to create the best conditions for you to get the images of Italy that you've been dreaming of. I love my country and all it has to offer, have been photographing it for decades and learned what it takes to make it really shine. Now it's your turn to capture your everlasting memories of Italy.
I am also passionate about the culture and history of Italy. Ask me about it and you might discover some historical facts that few people know about.
Who is this for?
This tour is recommended for every kind of photographer. Beginners and advanced amateurs will have lots of opportunities to learn new techniques, while even seasoned professional photographers will be able to take advantage of my knowledge of the country.
This is a tour designed for those who have already visited Italy’s most famous destinations – like Rome, Venice, and Florence – and want to experience places that are a bit off-the-beaten-path and less subject to mass tourism.
If you'd like to be taken care of by a team skilled professionals throughout your journey and pampered so that you don't have to worry about lodging and transportation hassles, then this tour is for you.
By clicking on the button below, you will be redirected to M&M Photo Tour's website.
Imagine having an opportunity to photograph some of the most incredible locations and people in the world’s most romantic city, Venice. And, during Carnevale! It was wonderful in every way. From the first email with Ugo, I could tell he was a caring, highly professional and experienced photographer and tour guide for us. He knew this city well and shared a lot before we were there.
I am so glad we chose Ugo and it was very special – my husband is still talking about it. There was so much to learn and interspersed with seeing a boat builder (gondolas), meeting the only professional puppet maker in Venice – and seeing how glass jewelry is made. Photo shoots were morning and night – you have to appreciate and be patient with the models. They are stunning.
The food also was wonderful – Ugo knew the best places. The group was small and allowed for intimate discussion and ease. We are so grateful for a truly immersive and learning experience in a magical city.
As I was spending my vacation in the Dolomites I arranged a one day private workshop with Ugo. Although I was a four hour drive from Ugo's home base he willingly made the journey — even though he was heading off to Barcelona first thing the next morning for another commitment.
Not having any transport or knowledge of the best locations to shoot having someone like Ugo was fantastic — and when you add his knowledge of photography and ability to impart that to his pupil it all added up to an outstanding day.
I recommend Ugo without reservation.
If you are planning to travel and love photography at any level Ugo can plan a personal tour to fit in with your itinerary! He has a wealth of knowledge to share with you on any subject of photography. Apart from photography (my passion) Ugo provides a total travel experience looking at Italy through the eyes of a local. A life changing trip leaving me totally hooked to book another! Thank you Ugo and yes I will be returning my dilemma is choosing a destination.
My husband and I did a workshop with Ugo in Cinque Terre. It was fantastic. Ugo is not only a great photographer, but he is generous with his knowledge, and he offers a great workshop. The group was international, which made the experience even richer.
I had a wonderful experience in Venice with Ugo. I learned new things while enjoying the wonderful city. I have some special needs which he was able to accommodate perfectly. I highly recommend his company for photo tours.
I have done 3 photo tours with 3 different guides and locations, this has been the best of the three. Ugo was definitely the best of the three guides. His attention to detail with setting the scene and location with models, suggestions on camera settings were helpful for me, a novice with portrait photography. I would definitely recommend any tour with Ugo, he is an excellent photographer willing to share his knowledge, experience and secrets of special places he knows to make the entire photography experience a lifetime memory.
What an extraordinary experience to participate in a photography tour and workshop with Ugo Cei Photography Tours, in Venice, Italy during the Venice Carnival. His knowledge of Venice along with the right place to be at the right time made this perfect. Add to that his technical and lighting knowledge and then to top it off the perfect local eateries and local interests. It was days full from daylight to evening at a manageable pace with likeminded new international friends. So glad I took the leap and participated.
After two photo tours with Ugo in Italy, I cannot recommend the experience highly enough – the local knowledge of Italy, partnered with photographic expertise and guidance made for an extremely rewarding photo tour! Ugo guides and mentors you according to your skills, regardless of whether you are a beginner or experienced enthusiast. I have come away with greater understanding of the craft and confidence to build my skill set. I am inspired to continue my learning journey to create beautiful images. Thank you Ugo!!!