This summer, Alexandra Kehoe embarked on an Italian journey with her family. One of their main reasons for visiting was to explore and reconnect with her mother’s birthplace. Pretty cool, right? 

The Kehoes are from Garden City, New York, and found Tenon Tours through a simple Google search. Alexandra remarked that she liked what our site had to offer, especially the personalization and customization parts: 

“I called and spoke with [Personal Travel Specialist] Stephanie, and I knew she understood what we wanted and that she was going to provide us with an amazing itinerary.” 

We have to say, one of our favorite parts of the planning process is that first phone call to touch base, hear your hopes for the trip and show that we are dedicated to making the experience completely, totally yours. We’re so glad Alexandra felt this way right off the bat!

This was a fairly large group traveling—a total of 14 family members. The crew consisted of Alexandra and her husband along with their three kids; her parents, sister and nephew; and finally, her cousin, his wife and three daughters. Quite a headcount! 

Alexandra’s mother had not returned to her place of birth in over 69 years. The place, called Cantalupo nel Sannio, is a charming town located in the Molise region of Italy. Molise is one of the smallest and least known regions in the country, located in the south.

Everyone’s favorite part of the trip? You guessed it—visiting Cantalupo nel Sannio. While there, they celebrated the Feast of St. Anna (believed to be the mother of Mary, Jesus’ own mother):

“We were able to see where our parents and grandparents were born and raised and put actual places to the stories we grew up hearing. We were able to take part in the festival of St. Anna (the town’s patron saint) and experience things we never have before. This was made possible through Tenon and the great planning from our travel experts Stephanie and Gracie.”

Other trip highlights? Authentic Italian pizza-making and a tour of a winery! They also resided in a historic villa for part of their time in Italy, the Villa San Lucchese. 

We often hear that, while the destination, excursions and tours are wonderful, there’s something else that makes the experience totally unforgettable, and that’s the people our travelers encounter: 

“We met so many new people. Our tour guides and drivers were fantastic. We met many locals in Cantalupo who would come up to us and ask us where we were from. We definitely stood out in a very small town where everyone knows each other! However, the friendliness and hospitality will never be forgotten.” 

Are you considering a trip to Europe soon? Take it from Alexandra herself, a personalized tour could be the way to go: “It was worth every penny! And, don’t be afraid to go to places that are not the “hot spots” like big cities. Our best times were in the countryside, like Tuscany and Molise.” 

Alexandra, thank you and your family for traveling with us! We are thrilled we had the chance to experience Italy with you in such a deep and meaningful way as you connected with new people and places and etched memories together that will last a lifetime. 

Feeling inspired by the Kehoes’ trip to Italy?  Browse our inspirational itineraries to get started on your next adventure! Anything is possible when you #TravelWithTenon

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