A lovely place. We had a fabulous vacation. There are three independent apartments which share a swimming pool and the garden. The location is perfect for daytrips. And there is a good restaurant nearby. A dream place.
Italian hospitality, beautiful surroundings, glorious Roman patio and a very pretty apartment are why I recommend this B&B choice.
In San Giovanni near shops and 10 minutes' walk from the colosseum. Very good value at 150 euro per night for the apartment. They also rent the separate rooms at 50 euro per night. I'll be back there. Bravo.
The best way to see a lot of Tuscany cheaply and quickly is by using the very reliable TrenItalia services.
First class tickets are only a fraction more expensive and you get a glimpse of another side of life in Italy. The best bit is that everyone talks to everyone, whether they know each other or not!
When you arrive at Rome, especially if you are flying in from outside the EU, you would usually land at the C area of the Fiumicino airport. Just to give you an idea, the Rome airport is divided into three areas: area A is for the national flights inside Italy, area B is for the EU flights and then C for all international flights outside the EU. So in case you arrive at C and if you are exiting at Rome or if you have a connecting flight for some other Italian city, either way you have to go through passport control. I am saying this because if you are coming from another EU country you do not need to do that – you are treated as if you are travelling through the same territory that of the EU, and that is why arriving at area B you just walk straight out, that is, once you collect your luggage.
For more Italy travellers tips and information here is a cool blog: www.italytravelnotes.com I do blog there myself and depending on which region of Italy you are interested in, you may find some great advice from travellers who have been in Italy for your next trip there.
Casina di Rosa is a cosy vacation rental in a hilltop village 30 minutes south of Siena.
We spent two weeks there and we already want to go back. The most amazing thing are the owners and their kindness. They went out of their way to help us organize wine tasting, olive oil tasting, a cooking class and much more. They are incredible. Plus the location is perfect.
The village is just off a major road that links Siena to the coast so we practically could see both Siena and the wine region AND the Maremma. We had searched the internet for months looking for a central location. We asked travel consultants and everybody told us that there was no place from where one could go on daytrips to Siena, Florence, the Chianti, the Valdorcia, Montalcino AND the Maremma and the coast. We had to choose, they said.
Well, in fact there IS such a place and it is Casina di Rosa.
Casina di Rosa
Civitella Marittima, Tuscany
Praiano might not be the most beautiful town on the Costiera Amalfitana, with the competition it faces from the world-renowned Positano and Amalfi (which has actually given its name to the entire coastline), but it still carries the typical relaxed and full-of-bright-colours atmosphere of one of the most beautiful coastlines in Italy.
Praiano is really well located along the Amalfi coast because if you decide to go to Positano, you do not need to take your car and face a parking challenge there since the coast is really well connected with both public transport and “the orange busses” as the locals call them, with which you need no more than 15 minutes to reach Positano and encounter another of the Amalfi coast marvels.
If you are headed for the Amalfi coast and decide to have Praiano as your tourist headquarter on the cost, here are the contact details of the Pensione “Pellegrino” tel: 0039 089 874-186 or go to www.pensione-pellegrino.it
You can find a lot more information and ideas on the Amalfi coast at www.italytravelnotes.com - a great Italy travel blog.
Directly across from central station and metro (airport, La Scala etc). Very helpful staff (good restaurant recommendations, ie torriani 25 across the street). Rooms are very nice especially in tower. Breakfast is lovely. Prices reasonable.
via napo torriani
It can be hard, on a student budget, to find a place where you can get a great Italian pizza for four euros or less.
This restaurant is tucked away down a side street (like many places in Salerno) and does a delicious margherita or pancetta pizza for three or four euros.
From research after I got back from my trip, I'm pretty sure this is the name of the restaurant; it's on Via Arechi, a two-minute walk from the HI hostel Ave Gratia Maria, which is on Via dei Canali. The restaurant is an unassuming building with a medieval style front with stained glass windows.
This restaurant is amazing! A great selection of innovative dishes with fabulous service.
Caminetti is a cosy family restaurant with a beautiful outside dining area overlooking the Piazza and Arco Della Pace and a delightful traditional interior.
Try the carrot and almond tart and follow up with the theatre that is macaroni heated in a giant parmesan wheel of cheese! Perfectly situated to move on to to some fantastic bars when you have finished your stunning meal.
The best meal we ate in a two-week tour.
Piazza Sempione 8
TeL 02.345 37 919
When I first visited Bergamo I found myself wondering why I'd never heard of it before.
Verona, Bologna, Naples are all of international renown yet Bergamo has something very special to offer, which for me eclipses the beauty of many other cities.
In simple terms, the lack of fame makes it quieter and less tourist-infested and, in addition, it's not a big city so less crowded but it's more than that of course.
So here are my 5 reasons to visit Bergamo.
1) The walled high town with its castle, university, cable car, cobbled streets, pedestrian area and varied restaurants offering beautiful views out over the plains of northern Italy
2) The excellent shopping area to be found in the low town.
3) The superb location, 10 mins from Milan Bergamo airport (Ryanair Hub) and 40 mins by train from Milan.
4) The hinterland that includes lakes, mountains and varied activities.
5) Its history and culture rival that of any other Italian town (perhaps with the exception of Milan, Florence and Rome).
I have written a destination guide at www.monticolo.it/bergamoguide.html
40 mins by train from Milan
10 mins from Milan Bergamo airport.
20 Mins from Lake iseo
If you have more time while in Italy and want to experience one of its most beautiful countrysides, take the Eurostar train from the Termini station in Rome and go to Florence.
The trip takes you about 1h and 50 min and it is all worth it. You dart through Tuscany at 200 km an hour on your way to Florence and you see for yourself the undulating hills, the cypress trees and on the top of the hill, villas and agriturismi Tuscany is known for.
And once you get to Florence go off the beaten tourist track – do visit the market of Florence and dive into the colourful atmosphere, the smell of leather and the art of bargaining. You can find there some great gift to carry home – especially the pashmina shawls and the silk ties.
I love going to Florence from Rome – even for a day and if you find the time to do it you will not regret it.
For more Italy travellers inspiration here is a cool blog: www.italytravelnotes.com
From the air, three old hills in a large park northeast of Milan appear oddly pyramidal. On the ground, a trail leads past grazing horses and cows and slopes terraced for wine growing. When the air is clear, the Alps are seen to the north.
Any mysteries lie buried and long forgotten.
Seafood dominates the menu. Lobster is the pricey local delicacy, but there are plenty of other affordable seafood delights that are caught locally and arrive fresh at the restaurants every day, the best being red mullet, shell-fish and squid.
Try bottarga (mullet roe), the Sardinian equivalent of caviar that is grated on top of spaghetti and drizzled with olive oil. Spaghetti con vongole (with clams) and alla marinara (with seafood) are also delicious. Culurgiones are pockets of pasta stuffed with pecorino (cheese made from ewe's milk) and ricotta and served in a tomato and mint sauce. Ravioli al sugo di noce (walnut sauce) comes a close second.
No matter how full you are, there is always room for seadas. This Sardinian dessert is the most delectable envelope of deep-fried pastry, stuffed with ricotta or sour cheese and drizzled with a bittersweet honey and burnt citrus peel. If that sounds too rich, try dolci sardi (Sardinian sweets and biscuits) or visit one of the many crowded gelati bars.
Hire a car and drive the 45km coast road south from Alghero to Bosa.
Around every curve in the road there is a sandy cove or rocky inlet, blue-green water, cliffs and mountains.
It's hard to make any sort of progress along the road, as the water is just too inviting and the clifftop photo opportunities too many.
Bosa itself is an unspoilt town, overlooked by most tourists in favour of the nearby marina and beach. A ruined castle perches on top of a hill, from which cobbled streets and quiet squares tumble down to the river, lined with huge palms and elegant mansions.
Take the SP105 from Alghero.
Alghero's locally produced wines are impressive, and won't set you back any more than £10.
Tanca Farra is a velvety red wine from Sella & Mosca, the island's biggest wine producers who also offer a cellar tour and wine-tasting session.
A cheaper red option is La Bombarde, and two crisp, refreshing white wines that go well with seafood are Aragosta and Vermentino, from the island's north.
The best day trip out from Alghero is a boat-ride to the Grotti di Nettuno (Neptune's Caves), hidden at the base of towering cliffs at the Capo Caccia peninsula.
It's a three-hour round trip taking in great views of Alghero, the local vineyards, the bay of Porto Conte and the distant hills.
The tourist office in Alghero has lists of all the boat trips, or just wander along the waterfront
Listed as one of Sardinia's nest beaches, Spiaggia della Pelosa is about an hour's drive from Alghero up to the north-west coast. It's a dreamy crescent of white sand and sparkling emerald water guarded by an ancient stone watchtower. It's very popular in summer though, so be prepared for traffic jams. The nearest town of Stintino is a little port that makes a nice stop for lunch.
on the SP 34 road, past Stintino
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