Make Italy Yours

A blog of Italian Culture and Nature

Category: Italian places

The Englishwoman visits Offagna

Hill towns of Le Marche, Italy

I’ve been silent for some time because my family was keeping me busy. I am freer now, and looking forward to sharing more about life in Le Marche.

Offagna is a good place to visit if you have just been to  IKEA and want to enjoy somewhere uniquely Marchigiano. Or if you are touring it’s convenient for Ancona, but a different world.

We drove along winding hilly roads with breathtaking views on either side, and adopted our usual technique of not studying the map but parking just under the walls – there’s always somewhere – going through the gate, and walking up towards the Rocca, or castle. Most  hill towns have them and when we took our girls round them, we tended to grade them according to the size of the Rocca. Corinaldo hasn’t got one at all, Mondavio’s is one of the best, and Offagna’s is impressive too.

The…

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Stretching my legs with a passeggiata in Sora, Italy

kimberlysullivan

Sora, Lazio, ItalyI’ve long been curious to visit the town of Sora, in Italy’s Lazio region and located in the province of Frosinone – just along the border with Abruzzo.

Since it’s a little off the beaten trail from the surrounding areas I visit more often (including the wonderful Parco Nazionale d’Abruzzo), I’ve never managed to get there.

Sora, Lazio, ItalyThis summer, however, as I was dropping one child off at tennis camp in Abruzzo and picking up another at running camp in the southernmost point in Lazio, I noticed that the long trip between the two destinations happened to take me by Sora.

Sora, Lazio, ItalyAnd so I finally visited the town on a sunny Sunday in July – and after all the driving behind me and all that ahead of me, it was the perfect excuse to park, stretch my legs and explore the town.

This town with a population of a little over…

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#ItalophiliaPostcards

Italophilia

In the past 3-4 years of blogging and social media, I have fostered many online friendships and am truly grateful for that. Some of them have turned into real life meetings in Italy/India and that is a testament to the amazing journey that blogging has given me.

Improving online relationships and getting to know my followers/friends has been a lot of fun. So keeping it alive, I have merged the old and new traditions with #ItalophiliaPostcards.

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Craco ( Matera-Basilicata ) Paese di pietre e sassi- Le fiabe che vanno scomparendo -Country of rocks and stones-The fairy tales that are disappearing

ventisqueras

tsb12762se il tempo fosse polvere per i nostri occhi non ci sarebbe  nessuna misericordia, ma il tempo costruisce la polvere sugli uomini e sulle cose per mantenerle in bilico nella memoria…poi un soffio di vento le disperde ancora e per sempre

castelmezzano1200

immobile nell’abbraccio di potenti spuntoni rocciosi immobile nel tempo : Craco  ( Cracun o Graculum, dal significato in latino” piccolo campo di grano” ) nome ricevuto quando se ne hanno le prime certe notizie storiche dall’arcivescovo Amaldo di Tricarico circa nel 1060, è uno dei cosiddetti paesi fantasma, cui ho dedicato una particolare posizione nel mio blog denominandoli ” Le fiabe che vanno scomparendo ”

dsc_7177-arrivo-a-cracosono circa 6.000 in tutta la penisola perlopiù piccoli agglomerati di case o piccolissimi borghi la maggior parte siti tra le montagne o sulle colline, abbandonati dagli abitanti nel corso degli anni o dei secoli  per varie cause, frane, smottamenti, terremoti

397090gli abitanti emigrati…

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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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La Scarzuola: An Umbrian Hub of Mystery & Eccentricity

Italophilia

 Located in the Montegabbione area of Umbria, La Scarzuola is a Franciscan convent and a complex made by a Milanese architect- Tomaso Buzzi.

DSC02809 Citta Ideale

Buzzi bought La Scarzuola in 1957 and began restoring it to create an “Ideal City” (Città Ideale).The complex is nothing but a result of a series of hundreds of sketches that Buzzi made. The place was built and rebuilt after which it collapsed and re-done countless times.

DSC02801 The entrance

But what is the Ideal City? I wonder.

Buzzi wanted to create a city that shows the ideal path of life to each individual. For me, it was unusual, quirky, imaginative yet hard to understand. The place is strange and requires a guide to take it all in.

DSC02829DSC02844

DSC02856 My lovely guide- Brian

I was lucky to be with Brian- an Australian who loved the place so much that he converted and settled in La Scarzuola and…

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My reasons for travelling to Italy – Series – Piazza 2

Travelling with Lyn

If I was to write about every piazza I have visited in Italy I could dedicate my blog exclusively to Piazze, so I will just mention a couple of other special ones that I have spent time in over the years.

Piazza del Campo is the principal public space of the historic centre of Siena, in Tuscany and is regarded as one of Europe’s greatest medieval squares. It is renowned worldwide for its beauty and architectural integrity. The twice-a-year horse-race Palio di Siena, is held around the edges of the piazza.

On my first visit to Siena, I was not sure what to expect but this is a place that looks great and grows on you as the more that you look the more that you can see.
It is fan shaped and not flat with a wide assortment of buildings. It felt like being in a huge outdoor living room with…

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