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The newsletter will be full of interesting articles on Italian attractions, cities and culture from Martha’s Italy, Wandering Italy, and occasionally one of our other “Wandering” sites like Wandering Sardinia
This newsletter has been delayed while I put the finishing touches a redesign of the Wandering Italy Blog. Loading an article like our guide to Padua is twice as fast as it was, and all the cruft has been removed.
We’ve been waiting a long time to return to Italy. Access to the boot is coming (for vaccinated folks) they tell us. Meanwhile, there are things to keep you immersed in travel while you wait at home.
For example, if you like tulips, which would be blooming about now, we’d tell you to go the Parco Giardino Sigurta, which boasts the largest display of tulips (one million!) in southern Europe. If you can’t go, just look at the pictures of the park through the button below.
Speaking of pictures, you can also purchase so of our pictures on the web for hanging on the wall while you dream of Italy travel. Or you can just check out what I think are my best pictures. If you don’t see the one you’ve liked on the site, just ask and I’ll add it.
What have tour companies and b&b owners been up to while we wait for Italy to open? They’ve been pouring out lots of informational material that is meant to make your independent travel a richer experience. Context Travel has spun off a site named Context Learning where you can sign up and take courses in many places and attractions in Italy and the rest of the world.
My favorite regions for spring are the Abruzzo and Puglia. After decent winter precipitation, there are lots of wildflowers to be seen, and the climate is likely to favor reasonably comfortable temperatures in spring.
In the Abruzzo, the trees can blossom while there’s still snow in the mountains. Like this:
It’s been a while since we’ve sent out a newsletter; thanks for hanging in there. I don’t know when American tourists will return to Italy, but one hopes it can’t be too long; the tourism industry is hurting.
American citizens with a residence permit can go back to their homes in Italy, providing they’re willing to undergo 14 days of quarantine without leaving the house at all (and they check!). We have an account of such a return made by friends who have a place in Lucca. See: Travel to Italy in the time of the Coronavirus.
Branching out. Let’s Zoom Together
Since travel to Italy is on hold for the moment, we thought maybe you’d be interested in an interactive chat with Chef Guido Santi on the traditional foods of his region, Lazio. Guido does online cooking classes from his kitchen and cooking school in the historic Sabine Hills, a wonderful place to visit only a short train ride from Rome. Here are the essentials for participating:
From the “If we want good things we’re gonna have to pay for them” department..
My friend, cicchetti guide extraordinaire Monica Cesserato is the driving force behind a proposed film that focuses on the extraordinary occupants of Venice, the artists and artisans that make the city a compelling place to visit. As a journalist, I’m fully behind this kind of film, because I’ve had to watch the continuing dreck the tourist bureau puts out, you know, those dreamy films featuring vacuous, beautiful people on their yachts drinking sparkling wine while the wind flows through their blond locks with a tiny corner of the island visible in the background.
But the thing is, in order to free yourself from the zonked-out adman’s view of Italy, you must find the money to make a decent film. So I’d like to encourage you, if you are of a like mind, to contribute to the making of this film. It will be called Anima Veneziana, and at the bottom of the page is the donate button.
Welcome to the Valentine’s Day edition of our humble newsletter. Today we celebrate San Valentino, a day recounting the saint of courtly love and patron saint of epilepsy. Love makes you crazy, the act makes you thrash around oddly. It all makes sense, sort of…
In any case, Martha is the star of this newsletter as she points to her favorite places with the Romantic edge where you’ll float on water in a slow moving vessel propelled by ancient genius or look out upon villages seeming to tumble into the wine-dark sea. Check them out:
In our last newsletter we focused on looking back at our best travel experiences of 2019. This time, Martha has some great suggestions for 2020 travel in places planning special events in this coming travel year.
Did you know that Rimini is celebrating 100 years of Fellini? Yes, it’s one of Martha’s top six recommendations for 2020. Check out the rest:
Maybe because I’ve just spent some serious time putting together a guide to the northwest corner of Sardinia that I’m thinking it would be good to go there in 2020. It’s easy to grab a flight to Alghero, rent a car and visit some stunning ancient sites and eat food you can’t get on the mainland. You can also grab a ferry and take you car with you.
Towards the end of the year, Martha and I realized that we’d had some fine adventures in 2019 that seemed quite unique. So, like two-headed Janus, we keep an eye on the past and look forward to planning great trips for for the future with “perfect” 2020 vision.
So I zeroed in on my favorite discoveries, from a fantastic brew pub in the heart of Italy’s finest wine region to the year’s best museum and castle. You can read it here:
There were many of those little “wow” moments in 2019, as shown in this picture in a family cantina, where a truffle hunter explains that the full vat he’s leaning on provides a single family with olive oil for the year (remember that Italians live several years longer than Americans…)
Did you know that the Roman Guy has morphed into the tour guy and offers a 5% discount on his tours using this link? (Disclosure: we also get a small fee to keep the site and newsletter afloat.)
Tools for Planning Travel in 2020
Moving on to the future, we offer you tools to start planning your vacation adventure. Few people know the size of Italy, so we have a map to show you. Italy is very small for a country with so very much to see—but that makes travel distances manageable.