The many faces of Bologna (our family weekend in Emilia-Romagna, pt. 1)

The many faces of Bologna (our family weekend in Emilia-Romagna, pt. 1)

Some of my most treasured memories are the family car trips around Europe that we used to take every year while I was growing up. No destination was too far. We would drive for hours, munching on treats bought in shops and gas stops on motorways and playing silly games, such as the one my sister and I excelled in, “who can put more flips in their mouth”. While we would stuff our faces with flips, choking from laughter, our parents would comment that we are crazy. These trips, our European adventures, were times of bonding and spending quality time together, always filled with great amounts of laughter and fun.  

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Photo diary: three Italian lakes

Photo diary: three Italian lakes

In autumn 2018, we decided to spend an extended weekend in northern Italy and visit the Italian lakes: Grandi laghi prealpini are a group of large lakes situated in northern Italy, on the south side of the Alps. They are glacial lakes that were formed after the retreat of the glaciers at the end of the last ice age and the group is composed, among others, of lakes Orta, Maggiore, Varese, Lugano, Como, Iseo, Idro and Garda.

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Baroque grandeur of the Palace of Caserta

Baroque grandeur of the Palace of Caserta

Prior to the visit to the Palace of Caserta, I felt a bit conflicted, expecting at the same time a lot and not much at all. On one side, extreme figures that the palace boasts with sent chills down my spine: volume of over 2 million m2, area of almost 50 000 m2, 120 ha of royal gardens… How large could this place be? On the other hand, the palace was modeled after the Palace of Versailles, and since I have seen “the original”, I did not expect this palace to surpass it. Continue reading “Baroque grandeur of the Palace of Caserta”

Mythical Capri

Mythical Capri

We were in a hurry to get to Capri. While standing in line in the Sorrento harbour, waiting for our turn to buy the tickets alongside a large group of other tourists, we were anxiously glancing from the line over to the catamaran that was apparently already starting its ride and wondering whether we will make it. We were being ridiculos, of course, because boats, water taxies and catamarans were traveling from Sorrento to Capri really often and our inability to get on board of this one would maybe impede our arrival to the island for 10-20 minutes. But we couldn’t wait so long, filled with impatience about visiting the island described so often as an island of myth, history, poetry, art and good living. We needed to know – and sooner rather than later – whether the hype was justified and whether we will love Capri as much as everyone else apparently does. Continue reading “Mythical Capri”

What Naples is not

What Naples is not

I don’t think I have ever visited a city that people have such drastically polar opinions about as Naples: for some, this is one of the most beautiful cities not only in Italy, but in entire Europe, while for some, the city is simply not their cup of tea. While everyone, of course, has a right to their opinion, it seems that people who don’t like Naples are extremely strict in their judgments, accusing the city of being dangerous, dirty, soulless or boring. Continue reading “What Naples is not”

Marvelling at Miramare

Marvelling at Miramare

Often when I find myself visiting a castle I think about what life must have been like for the people who lived there and… Well, what I would do if I had a castle of my own. How I would decorate it, what purpose would parts of it have, what types of events and parties I would organise and for whom. It may be a pretty childish way of observing things, but without it, castles for me would only be huge buildings filled with dusty rooms. This way, they turn out to be much more fun.
Last year, my boyfriend and I visited Miramare Castle in Trieste. It was a pretty spontaneous decision as we were just looking for a nice place to spend a day and did not properly prepare for the visit at all. I didn’t even take my camera! Continue reading “Marvelling at Miramare”

Strada Statale 163 and one crazy Amalfi ride

Strada Statale 163 and one crazy Amalfi ride

Ingredients are the same as in so many other parts of the world: there is sea, sun, mild weather, small coastal towns and villages, beaches and lovely vegetation. What makes Costiera Amalfitana stand out as one of the most memorable places I have ever seen, though, is the road – crazy Strada Statale 163 Amalfitana that connects towns situated along the Amalfi coast, starting with Meta and ending with Vietri sul Mare. It follows the coast for some 50 kilometers and, on its way, twists into more than 1 500 bends. Continue reading “Strada Statale 163 and one crazy Amalfi ride”

Torna a Surriento

Torna a Surriento

It is not easy to define what is it about Sorrento that reminds you so vividly of the old glitzy European resorts of the first half of the 20th century. Maybe it’s the Mediterranean architecture of luxurious old hotels, or its small streets and hidden squares, or the fact that Piazza Tasso, the town’s central square, turns into a pedestrian area in the evening – the crazy traffic gets shut down and tourists stroll around, merrily and nonchalantly, enjoying a gelato or a late drink in one of the cafés surrounding the square. Add to the picture palm trees and fragrant flowers, romantic gold illumination of the street lamps and views of the sea… and you feel like you have walked into a set of an old Hollywood movie. Continue reading “Torna a Surriento”