The little blue train takes you on a scenic trip through the Painters’ Valley and its small villages. The colours of nature are an enchanting sight in every season, rural environments of pristine beauty match the elegance of refined buildings in historic centres and amazing churches preserving frescoes of the local painters. Gourmets will enjoy excellent food products such as the “stinchett”, the local street food, and a typical lunch with local dishes. Your tour leader will take you around for an unforgettable "travel like a local" experience in a very small group of maximum 8 people
The train from Milan leaves at 8.29 am and takes you to Domodossola, a small town at the foot of the Alps, partly following the enchanting coastline of Lake Maggiore. You will arrive in Domodossola after one and a half hour approximately and there you will meet your tour leader who will show you around: the first stop will be the Market Square, the Renaissance heart of the town with palaces and 14th century arcades, that alone is worth this trip. You can enjoy this small town atmosphere by having a cappuccino at one of the cafès in the square, an ice cream at the best “gelateria” in town or by exploring the nearby alleyways. Chocolate lovers cannot miss a visit at a chocolate shop where you would be engulfed by the chocolate scent coming from the adjacent laboratory. Buying chocolate and having a chat with the owner is in itself an interesting experience. At 11.25 am you will board the panoramic train that takes you to Santa Maria Maggiore, the main village of the Val Vigezzo known also as the Painters’ Valley or the Chimney Sweep Valley. The valley casts a spell on its visitors at every time of the year; admire the intense green of the summer, the gold and red leaves in autumn, the white snowy landscape in winter and the thousand shades of spring blooms. The train ride to Santa Maria Maggiore lasts 50 minutes and then you can continue your gourmet experience by tasting the local street food, the stinchett, a thin layer of puff pastry cooked on a hot-plate and seasoned with local butter and salt, to be enjoyed with a glass of wine. You will not be disappointed either by the Chimney Sweep menu that you are going to have for lunch at a restaurant in the village centre. In the afternoon, you will have time to explore the village shops offering the best of the local handicraft. The village houses the Chimney Sweep Museum and the House of Perfume celebrating the emigrants who invented and merchandised the famous “Eau de Cologne” and who were born in Santa Maria Maggiore. The Museum and the House of Perfume are open only in summer time but you will not be disappointed in case you travel when they are closed because your tour leader will introduce you to the local people who will be happy to tell you about their village and their valley of which they are deservedly proud.
At 3.53 pm take the panoramic train back to Domodossola and the connecting train to Milan where you will arrive at 6.30 pm