A Great Italian Romance: Sweet on Merenda

Italian sweets - there comes a time for everything!

There comes a certain time of day when all minds in Italy wander towards one thing and one thing only – Merenda.


We are all distracted with sweet thoughts of Merenda, how lovely to feel Merenda’s touch on our lips. It is a desire so strong that few are able to resist.


Of course, I am talking about the Italian tradition of afternoon tea, ‘merenda’. It’s the must-have-chocolate-time that usually hits around 4-5pm.


The local coffee shops (known in Italian as ‘bar’) sell a great range of baked sweets, like biscuits (cookies) and pastries. But there are also many chocolate products available, the most common in Italy by far being anything by Kinder.


In Italy, Kinder products are not just for kiddies by any means. Pastries are often filled with Nutella and tarts filled with the chocolate goodness.


In fact, Kinder (and its owner Ferrero) have many sweet treats that are loved by Italians, and pretty much anyone in the world actually.

Ferrero Rocer, Mon Cheri,  Nutella, all the Kinder range, and even Tic-Tacs actually are all made by the company started by Michele Ferrero and his wife Maria Franca. Michele’s parents owned a pastry store which clearly instilled in young Michele a great love of sweets – and afternoon snacks! Their pastry store eventually became a much larger-scaled production that in turn became Ferrero. Origianally started in the Italian area of Piedmont, Michele and Maria’s two children, Pietro and Giovanni, ran the family business for some time until Pietro was killed in April 2011 working on a humanitarian mission in South Africa as part of a re-launch of Ferrero Social Enterprises. Now, it is Giovanni who continues to make some of the world’s greatest sweets.

To learn about food and have fun learning discovering tasty ways to use seasonal Italian ingredients to make delicious, typical dishes before indulging in a delicious meal made by you, we have hands-on cooking classes in Florence.

If you would like to immerse yourself in the Tuscan culture, we have a small-group Best of Tuscany tour visiting Siena, San Gimignano and Monteriggioni too, as well as stopping for lunch and wine tasting at an award-winning wine estate. See the highlights of Tuscany in one spectacular day tour from Florence – Best of Tuscany small-group tour.

Join us to have fun on an exhilarating bike ride from Florence to the Tuscan countryside, whizzing up and down the rolling Tuscan hills that form the stunning Tuscany countryside as you tour to a great Tuscan villa wine estate to visit their wine cellar for a Tuscan wine tasting, and dine at an award-winning Tuscan restaurant. During the warmer months, you may want to add a splash of extra fun to your Tuscany bike tour with our unique  Tuscany Bike Ride with a Villa Swim. Should you wish to skip the Tuscan bike riding altogether and head straight pool-side, we have our Wine Tour and Villa Swim with lunch or simply enjoy a Villa Swim and Lunch in Tuscany.

Visit a Tuscan villa on the Taste of Tuscany at the Villa wine tour. Explore historic wine estates before undertaking a wine tasting. Tread through the terrain, enjoying spectacular views of the Tuscan countryside up-close and personal.

Stroll through the Tuscan countryside, join us for a Perfect Morning in Tuscany small-group walking tour. Leaving from Florence’s city centre and heading to the surrounding countryside, this small-group walking tour includes, well, walking in Tuscany, as well as lunch with wine at a stunning Renaissance Villa Estate, accompanied by an expert tour guide.

If you would like to have a private guide accompanying you, we have private tours that cater to your every desire. From Florence (and Tuscany) to RomeVenice to the Cinque Terre and beyond, we are at your beck and call.

To explore other areas of Italy, can check out our Artviva Walking Tours website to read more about the tours we have to offer in Florence, RomeVeniceCinque Terre, Umbria, Naples, Pompeii and more.

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