Make Italy Yours

A blog of Italian Culture and Nature

Category: Italian Cities and Towns

April blossoms and spring in the Lagoon of Venice

La Venessiana

Spring in Venice comes early and you can notice its first signs by mid-February. It’s not just the narcissi and primrose plants you see pop up in the fiorerie (flower stores) and on the balconies, it’s the season of mimosa blossoming (take a look at mimosa pictures in Venice in this blog article).

March and April bring on unstable weather in the first six weeks, with bouts of rain and even nightly thunderstorms transporting a moist and warm breeze from the South Western Mediterranean. What we consider unpredictable is a boon to our plants, and they really get greener every day! One morning you open your windows and get the view I did in the title picture of this blog post. The light takes on a special sparking quality and makes you want to eat breakfast on the terrace overlooking Rio di San Provolo … but it was a little too chilly at…

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Trani

 

 

10 Charming Small Towns in Italy

Italophilia

Who doesn’t love quaint towns?? If you are in Italy or traveling there anytime soon, this list is a keeper. You will feel blessed to be in a country with so many varied choices of charming towns. Although this list is not exhaustive, it certainly includes many of my favorites. I will keep adding more to this list as and when I can. If you have any favorites, feel free to share 🙂

Perugia:

With an annual chocolate and jazz festival to its kitty, Perugia is quite a catch. It is still quite unknown to a first time Italy traveler so take a chance next time you are in Italy. Visit this medieval town before it gets run down by mass tourism and selfie sellers.

be3c2-dsc02647 Piazza IV Novembre

1cd45-dsc02626 Umbrian Views

Montegiove:

Deep in the green heart of Italy and quite close to Perugia is another small town with an ancient castle, a…

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Perugia, Italy

Travel in Italy Blog

Perugia is in the Umbria region near the Tuscany border. This is Italy’s famous chocolate town. Home to Perugina (Back) chocolates. These are one of the best chocolates in the world. As you walk around the old section, each store sells these wonderful chocolates. How great to walk an old city, see beautiful vistas, be on small streets, see old architecture and eat wonderful chocolates.

The old section has very tight small streets. You may not want to drive into it. Park in the central parking lot outside the old section. See the video VLOG below for more details.

Perugia was one of the most important Etruscan cities. Etruscans were an ingenious people who ruled cities around Italy during pre-Roman times. This city has history and the architecture to prove it. This is a city to walk and explore its wonders. Many streets are narrow alley ways that twist and turn. As…

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Positano, Italy

Travel in Italy Blog

It is true that I left my heart in Positano! It is a city of much beauty. There is something special about this wonderful place. Every time I return, I feel I am returning home again. When you see it first from an overlook on the Amalfi Coast Road or from the sea on a ferry, you realize it is a city built on the side of a steep cliff. How could they have done this? There are two roads and one is the Amalfi coast Road that skirts the town. The other is a one way road that starts high up on the cliffs at the Amalfi Coast Road and winds its way down into the city and then out to the Amalfi Coast Road again.

This is a seaside city of great shops and restaurants. It has views at every turn. There are two beaches (the small and…

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Harvesting Blossoms and the Ancient Perfume Manufacturers in Venice

La Venessiana

Early fall is a boon for gardeners in Venice. Rainy weather and cooler temperatures allow plants and vegetables to thrive in the moist Lagoon. Farther south, for example on the Amalfi Coast, autumn is considered a second spring – la primavera in autunno. That’s also true for Venice to some extent.

Early fall is the main harvest season and Venice is brimming with colorful produce. But the colors we can see in early autumn must be nothing compared to what harvesting time looked like for more than 1000 years in our town, until the early 18th century.

30c14a5f336068e540035e1361efed07300 years ago, you would have seen manufacturing sites in all parts of Venice that may well be called factories, using tons of blossoms to make ointments, soap, essential oils and flower waters. Blossoms were used to make herbal remedies and distilled to flavor sugar (no Venetian noblemen would have eaten plain sugar 300 years ago !!)…

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Ovid’s birthplace: Sulmona, Abruzzo

kimberlysullivan

Sulmona, Abruzzo, ItalySulmona is a small town in the region of Abruzzo. It is located near one of Abruzzo’s three national parks: the National Park of the Majella.

The town dates back to before the Roman Empire, but it was the era of the Roman Empire in which Sulmona boasted its most famous resident: Publio Ovidio Nasone, best known by most school children as Ovid, the author of the Metamorphosis.

Sulmona, Abruzzo, ItalyOvid was born in Sulmona in 43 B.C. and he achieved great success during his lifetime, until his criticism angered Emperor Augustus, who banished the poet to the outer reaches of teh Empire, in modern-day Romania.

In his verses, Ovid wrote about his hometown: “Sulmo mihi patria est, gelidis uberrimus undis, milia qui novies distat ab Vrbe decem” (Sulmona is my homeland, rich with cool waters, located a distance of 90 miles from Rome.)

Sulmona, Abruzzo, ItalyBut the architecture of  ‘modern’ Sulmona has…

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