Many countries have interesting traditions involving folklore, festivals and even living creatures, such as the running of the bulls in Spain. But come to Italy, and you will find the most unique of them all. Continue reading "An Annual Tribute To Snakes"
An Enchanted Castle That Is Egg-straordinary
The power of magic and legend can influence the destiny of an entire city and its people. And so it was, in medieval times in Naples, where a prophecy involving an enchanted egg became a symbol to its citizens of protection against disaster. Continue reading "An Egg-straordinary Castle"
How Do You Say Happy Hour In Italian? Aperitivo!
Milan is known for many things…fashion, finance, industry, museums and universities. But the second largest city in Italy is also the capital of the Aperitivo.
Lamborghini, Ferrari, Pagani, and Maserati….just the names of these manufacturers can leave any car lover salivating. The thought of seeing these cars, touching them, and witnessing just how they are made could drive any enthusiast up the wall. Motor Valley in Emilia Romagna is where these Italian cars and their history can be observed first-hand. Museums, factories, showrooms, and private collections can all be viewed for a show that is out of this world. Continue reading "Emilia Romagna Land of Motor Sports"
Whether it’s stone soup, chicken noodle, seven layer, or another, soup is a delicious dish that has been around since the beginning of time. When large amounts of food were limited in times past, it only seemed logical that you would mix everything together to make the leftover food extend further to feed more mouths. It has been done throughout the centuries with both rich and poor families, and it is still being done today. In Tuscany, some of the most delicious meals are in the form of soups. The most common ones include Panzanella, Ribollita, and Pappa al Pomodoro. Continue reading "Traditional Tuscan Poor Dishes – History of Ribollita, Pappa Al Pomodoro, and Panzanella"
On the island of Sardinia, where lively colors and bright festivities are the norm, a ritual of contrasting black and white can seem far from the original tempo of the city. Once a year around the time of Ash Wednesday, Sardinia becomes an island that is bursting with black and white painted faces, grotesque masks, and ancient rituals that have been around for over two thousand years. This Sardinia carnival, also known as “Carrasegare”, is a celebration that brings forth parades, mysterious horse-races, and eerie street dances that continue for days on end. Continue reading "Experiencing A Different Carnival Celebration in Sardinia"
Right in the heart of the beautiful Tuscan region, not far from Siena and only 9 Km from Montalcino, sits the impressive Sant’Antimo Abbey, a must-see for anyone visiting the area. According to a legend, the abbey was founded by Charlemagne in 781 AC after he fell ill nearby and prayed for deliverance. Even though there is no evidence of this popular tale, it is quite likely he did make a stop that year (apparently in full health!) and set his seal on the foundation. In later times, the monastery served as a rest stop for pilgrims, merchants, Continue reading "Sant’Antimo Abbey and the Gregorian Chants"
Folklore is a large part of Italy and even more so, in the Apulia region located in what is the heel of Italy’s “boot” shape. In this particular region, folk dances are very popular and have their roots in Ancient Greece. The “Pizzica” is a traditional dance popular throughout the Salentine peninsula along with the “Tarantella”. These ritualistic dances were performed in honor of the gods of music and sun (Apollo) and wine (Dionysus). Continue reading "Pizzica and Tarantella: Folk Traditions of Apulia"
Every year in the quaint and historic town of Spoleto, located in the Umbria region, one of the most important artistic festivals in the world takes place during the summer months: the “Festival dei Due Mondi," or Festival of the Two Worlds. This exuberant event was first started in 1958 by composer Gian Carlo Menotti. Menotti hoped to fuse the artistic contributions of both the old world, Europe, and the new world, America, and generate mutual appreciation for Continue reading "Come Experience the Spoleto Festival of the Two Worlds"
Many people reading this are probably already thinking about their next vacation. Visions of ancient cities, friendly people, and gorgeous landscapes dance before the eyes, and noses are already picking up phantom scents of true Italian cooking! If you are one of the many thinking about a trip to Italy this year, or beyond, I invite you to check out our brand new website. Continue reading "Trips2Italy New Website Announcement and Introduction to Newsletter"