Travelrific® Travel Journal

Picture postcards in prose.™ Check out the blogroll on the front page for official merchandise and other resources!

Archive for italy

Goethe Slept Here

By Linda Tancs

You can imagine the pride that a tiny resort town would have when a famous writer and statesman like Johann Wolfgang von Goethe drops in for a night. Such was the case for Torbole, Italy. Located on the shore of Lake Garda, the hole-in-the-wall commemorated the illustrious visit in the 1700s with a plaque on the guest house in the town center. Nowadays it’s best remembered, and prized, as an international center for windsurfing and sailing thanks to constant winds hailing from the Monte Baldo mountain range as well as the lake.

*************

To limit the spread of COVID-19, attractions may be closed or have partial closures. Please keep those affected by the virus in your thoughts and be sure to follow the safety practices advocated by the Centers for Disease Control. Stay safe, and be well.

Craftwork in Val Gardena

By Linda Tancs

Val Gardena is a valley nestled in the Dolomites in the South Tyrol region of Italy. It may be prized for its pistes in winter, but don’t overlook its long history as a center of artisanal woodcarving. In fact, the tradition has been alive and well since the 17th century, passed on from generation to generation. Sought after worldwide, the bevy of artists there produce everything from simple, utilitarian items to finely detailed figurines and sculptures.

*************

To limit the spread of COVID-19, attractions may be closed or have partial closures. Please keep those affected by the virus in your thoughts and be sure to follow the safety practices advocated by the Centers for Disease Control. Stay safe, and be well.

On-Demand Wine in Florence

By Linda Tancs

The concept of “on-demand” has a long history. Really long. And it has nothing to do with media libraries. We’re talking about on-demand wine, a concept dating to the 16th century in Florence, where wealthy winemakers would earn some easy cash selling wine through a hole in the wall, literally. These wine windows (buchette del vino) were embedded in the doors or walls of Florentine palaces, only after a time to be lost to history and boarded over. But, as the saying goes, everything old is new again. The wine window is making a comeback, with Babae being the first restaurant to embrace the old tradition. You’ll find them in the city’s Santo Spirito neighborhood.

*************

To limit the spread of COVID-19, attractions may be closed or have partial closures. Please keep those affected by the virus in your thoughts and be sure to follow the safety practices advocated by the Centers for Disease Control. Stay safe, and be well.

Springtime in Abruzzo

By Linda Tancs

Spring is the best time to visit Italy’s Abruzzo National Park. That’s when the meadows are covered with flora like flowering violets, crocuses, snowbells, gentians, lilies, primroses and buttercups. It’s also when the area’s protected fauna arise from hibernation and migrating birds blanket the sky. Located in the heart of the central Apennines, the park is a refuge for protected species like the Apennine wolf, Abruzzi chamois and Marsican brown bear. Both the park and various towns in its environs organize themed guided tours throughout the year, as well as exhibitions and shows, events and festivals associated with the local heritage.

*************

As coronavirus proceeds, it is likely that the vast majority of us will be limited in our travels. But this, too, shall pass. Our love for travel remains, so Travelrific will continue offering travel inspiration in this medium. Please keep those affected by the virus in your thoughts and be sure to follow the safety practices advocated by the Centers for Disease Control. Stay safe, and be well.

The Heart and Soul of Milan

By Linda Tancs

La Scala is an opera house in Milan, Italy, often referred to as the city’s heart and soul. Indeed, it’s hard to think of Italy’s second-most populous city (after Rome) without linking it with its iconic theater. You can learn all about it at Museo Teatrale alla Scala, the theatrical museum and library attached to the opera house. They provide special guided tours of the theater, including the foyer, the royal box, the historic boxes and the stage’s mechanized movement system. You’ll also see the Ansaldo Workshops, where the costumes and scenery come to life. General tours are available in English and Italian as well as in French for personalized guided tours.

*************

As coronavirus proceeds, it is likely that the vast majority of us will be limited in our travels. But this, too, shall pass. Our love for travel remains, so Travelrific will continue offering travel inspiration in this medium. Please keep those affected by the virus in your thoughts and be sure to follow the safety practices advocated by the Centers for Disease Control. Stay safe, and be well.

Southern Italy’s Little Gem

By Linda Tancs

Soft sand, pastel-colored houses and scenic harbors. Those are just some of the delights in Procida, the smallest island in the Campanian Archipelago in southern Italy near Naples. It boasts three scenic harbors (Marina Grande, Marina Chiaiolella and Marina Corricella), all of which can be visited via a boat ride. The belvedere near the castle provides exquisite views of the colorful Marina Corricella, and Punta Pizzaco offers commanding views of the whole island. Don’t miss the chance to try “Procida’s tongues,” a puff pastry filled with custard.

*************

As coronavirus proceeds, it is likely that the vast majority of us will be limited in our travels. But this, too, shall pass. Our love for travel remains, so Travelrific will continue offering travel inspiration in this medium. Please keep those affected by the virus in your thoughts and be sure to follow the safety practices advocated by the Centers for Disease Control. Stay safe, and be well.

 

Italy in a Day

By Linda Tancs

Rimini is an Adriatic, Italian resort town primarily known for its jam-packed beaches. But you can also experience a taste of the whole country there. You’ll do that by visiting Italy in Miniature, a theme park with at least one miniature building from every Italian town of any prominence. You can even take a gondola ride in little Venice, a huge favorite among tourists. Its 273 scale reproductions also include major European cities. Expect to spend the better part of a day exploring.

*************

As coronavirus proceeds, it is likely that the vast majority of us will be limited in our travels. But this, too, shall pass. Our love for travel remains, so Travelrific will continue offering travel inspiration in this medium. Please keep those affected by the virus in your thoughts and be sure to follow the safety practices advocated by the Centers for Disease Control. Stay safe, and be well.

Spurred On in Italy

By Linda Tancs

Most would liken the shape of Italy to a boot. The spur on the heel of that boot is the Gargano Promontory. Jutting into the Adriatic Sea, much of it is in preserved land comprising Gargano National Park. Regarded as the most extensive national park in the country, its heart is the Umbrian Forest, home to some of the nation’s oldest trees. The locale is the best place to experience an ancient forest in Italy; consider taking a jeep tour.

A Rival to Versailles

By Linda Tancs

The Medici family ruled Florence, Italy, during the Renaissance. Their contributions to local culture are legendary, as are the many villas and gardens that family members accumulated over the centuries. One of their largest estates was Villa di Pratolino, its mansion and park environment worthy of comparison to Versailles. Eventually abandoned, the villa and the majority of its outdoor trappings became lost to history, and the complex was eventually purchased by a Florentine council for use as a public park. It hasn’t lost all of its Medici charms, however. A surviving element of the original estate is the imposing Colossus of the Apennines, a gigantic, 16th-century stone sculpture by Giambologna. Pratolino is about seven miles from the center of Florence; take bus #25A from Piazza San Marco.

Free Museums in Italy

By Linda Tancs

Free museum entry on the first Sunday of every month is making a comeback in Italy for state-operated museums, palaces and archaeological sites. That’s good news for tourists visiting renowned venues like the Colosseum in Rome, Florence’s Galleria dell’Accademia, Pompeii, the Palace of Caserta, Trieste’s Castello di Miramare and Turin’s Palace of Venaria. A complete list of participating sites is on the Ministry for Culture’s website.

%d bloggers like this: