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archive of August, 2016


posted by on August 29th, 2016

At the end of the first millennium, many pilgrims crossed Europe from Canterbury or from the ports of Apulia to arrive finally at Rome, to pray at the tomb of the Apostle Peter.

Some of them even continued to the ‘Holy Land’ to Jerusalem. This phenomenon created such a mass size of interest, that it developed real ways of faith mapped by abbeys and villages adapted to host the pilgrims.
The walking route from Canterbury to Rome was 1.500 kilometers, so it was a real penitential journey that in a material and symbolic way handed the pilgrim in God’s hands, but this journey exposed the pilgrims to all sorts of danger from wild animals to seasonal weather. For this reason, along the board of Francigena the first villages got developed which lead to the existence of towns like Siena and San Gimignano, including other towns rich of famous and non famous artistic works.
It is indeed this road which is the main itinerary through Italy and Europe which retraces the history of Italy, starting from the origin of its name. The term ‘Francigena’ originally meant the way ‘from the land of Franks’ that made it possible for pilgrims to arrive in Rome coming from the far North.
The importance which ‘Via Francigena’ had on its population, other than the spiritual aspect, also in the cultural aspect: it was a privileged route of a fundamental channel of communication for the cultural unity of Medieval Europe.

Simultaneously, the ‘Via Francigena’ favored from trade coming from the East, silk, spices and other goods, highly requested by northern European countries.
Rediscovered by his contemporaries as a testimony of the past, modern travelers today are setting out along a beautiful and astonishing route with variety of different landscapes which tell the Italian history.
Developing along different regions, the ‘Via Francigena’ crosses the Piedmont, Liguria, Tuscany, Lazio and Emilia Romagna.
Appointed Cultural Route of the Council of Europe, the Italian part, starts from the Gran San Bernardo until Roma and consists of more or less 944 kilometers. Crossing the route on foot with an average of 20 kilometers a day, you will reach the destination in about a month and a half. If you go by bike, more or less 15 days should do.


posted by on August 25th, 2016

The adventure begins at Olbia, where the airport is located. From there yachtsmen and sailors begin their journey on the road to get to the exclusive Yacht Club Costa Smeralda, frequented by the Jet Set and meeting point of prestigious national and international sailing competitions. A stay in the elegant surroundings of the Yacht Club, decorated all with wood and windows with the shape of a sailing ship, it is privileged reserved for members and their guests. The Club is located just opposite of the harbor of Porto Cervo, a mooring place of super luxury boats and yachts, landings of jet sets and meeting point for the sailing competitions. Prince Karim Aga Khan, was the one who gave life to the area of luxury, by baptizing the coast with the name of the color of its waters. The boat ride is more than memorable, between Porto Cervo and Caprera, between bays and coves, in search of the most beautiful and less crowded coves, with as final destination the exclusive Yacht Club.

To enjoy the charm of this part of the Sardinian coast, the ideal period to visit is between May and September, so you avoid the high season weeks of August and its complete crowded beaches. The coast is absolutely worth a trip to Italy: from Cala di Volpe to Porto Cervo is a continuous line of beautiful beaches, crescents of fine sand, offshores of red cliffs and clear blue sea with possible shades of green.

Among the many beaches gathered, it seems that the Prince loved to stop in Poltu Cogghj, also known as the beach of the Prince, who apparently had a fondness for this white sand line to Romazzino.
For those who want to go further, we recommend to navigate up to the most isolated islands or stretch up toward the Maddalena Archipelago.The nearest of these islands is Caprera, it will take you more or less half an hour to arrive, where you can take a dive in the clear blue waters of Cala Portese.

When you return to the coast, passing ‘Capo Ferro’ on which an old lighthouse stands, you can go towards the beaches of Petra Ruja, situated in the south of Cala di Volpe: a quarter kilometer long stream of white sands and pebbles, green blue sea and stranded sea grass. Between one stop and the other do not miss the exclusive retreats: a few meters from the sea, the Reef Beach & Restaurant welcomes you with its atmosphere of casual elegance, where to eat delighting Sardinian delicacies and fish, barefoot on the sand. Back into the sea, docking at the harbor of Porto Cervo, in the elegant surroundings of the Yacht Club, all with wood and stained glass decorated with a sailing ship. After all the sun, a break at the wellness center, Spa Acqua di Parma, is permitted, the spa is also open for non members.
The holiday is over and we have to move towards Olbia for the return flight.


posted by on August 23rd, 2016

This is a provocative question. But it was very funny when a picture of George Clooney appeared in the Gossip magazines, going around on the bike along the cycle paths surrounding Lake Como.

The Italians wondered what is there so special of that place that it has been chosen by an overseas film star. Yet, with all the heavenly places that populate the rest of the planet, it is Lake Como that George Lucas has chosen to set the love story between Anakim and Padme in Star Wars, born on the romantic planet of Naboo. The lake may seem indeed, on some memorable days, a dreamy and a world apart, although it is quite fun for those who know this place very well and for those who live there, to see the line of trucks of the entire Star Wars crew, marching on the narrow streets and settle in these towns of the lake. One thing is certain, Lake Como is not discovered by Hollywood. It has been loved for centuries, certainly since the Romans set foot in the colony of Nova Comum (founded on the lake shores 59 before Christ) and built luxurious villas on the shore.

The shock to the landscapes of Lake Como, however, occurred in the Romantic era. It could not go different wise: for its character and nature, with high forested mountains that rise vertically from the lake, the sky that clouds over by sudden storms, the Lario was, and still is, the destination for those with the most sensitive and dramatic souls.
During the nineteenth century it got conquered. At this point in history, the traveller/ writer Goethe could not be missed, he described it the luminous air, here Malombra Fogazzaro was set, and were consumed true and passionate loves. And if today these passions of the soul do not seem to exist anymore, on the lake you can always find a place to reinvent your own love story.

You can walk along the shore where you can catch a glimpse of the glorious Italian gardens of the most luxurious villas, today disputed industry from all over the world and international stars. And you can not help but imagine how much the ‘dolce vita’ was experienced in such beauty. Such as in 5 star hotels, from Villa D’Este to the Grand Hotel Tremezzo, places for a luxurious holiday and vacation, imagine how they could have been in the past!
Lake Como, place of passion, literary inspiration and the heart, just that is already worth a trip to Italy!


posted by on August 16th, 2016

Mantova is the city of culture 2016…. So why not go there and discover its beauty together with your four legged friend?
This is a city that has its roots very far, connected to the Gonzaga family who constructed one of the main centers of the Italian and European Renaissance period and has been included to the UNESCO World Heritage List. The nature of Mantova is overloaded with beauties: hills full of history, intense green landscapes, hydrography rich of rivers and canals.

It starts at Mincio, at Via San Giorgio where you can leave your car and start enjoying walks with your dog, including a lovely break in the green shores of ‘Lago di Mezzo’.
After a few steps you reach the square called Sordello, where the House of Rigoletto is situated. Here stands the imposing castle ‘Castello di San Giorgio’.
Tourists from all over the world come to the fort to admire the Bridal Chamber, or ‘Camera Picta’, painted by Andrea Mantegna between 1465 and 1475, the artist’s tribute to the family of Gonzaga – to visit, a reservation is required.
With the same ticket, free for children under 18 and for those over 65, you can visit, in additional to the ‘Camera Picta’, a part of ‘Castel San Giorgio’ and Palazzo Ducale’: The palace of the Gonzaga family, a sumptuous complex of apartments, lounge areas, corridors, courtyards and gardens – recommend to visit is the apartment of widow Isabella d’Este.
Going through ‘Portico dei Lattonai’, under the ‘Palazzo della Ragione’, you cross the nearby square ‘Broletto’, where you can browse through the various shops and buy the famous “sbrisolona”, a cake of poor origins, many years ago the ingredients in fact where typical of the countryside traditions, made of corn flour, lard and hazelnuts.
From ‘Palazzo della Ragione’, built in the mid-thirteenth century to host the city’s meetings, to the square ‘Broletto’ up to the most beautiful square ‘Piazza delle Erbe’.

On its Eastern side, you can see the ‘Torre dell’Orologio’, inside this tower you can find the museum ‘Museo dell’ Opera’, which exposes the mechanisms of the period of the watch, and from the top you can have a beautiful view of the city and its lake that surrounds it.When you continue toward south you reach the palace ‘Palazzo Te’, this masterpiece of Giulio Romano, is the most fascinating and mysterious residence of Mantova; built by the marquis Federico II Gonzaga, who for a long time was looking for a home for his entertainment; it is decorated with symbols and myth scenes.At one time ‘Palazzo Te’ stood at the center of an island surrounded by the waters of a lake and a green forest. This visit includes the ‘Cortile d’Onore’, the ‘Sala dei Cavalli’, the rooms of Cupid and Psyche, the ‘Venti’, the ‘Aquile’, the sumptuous room of the plasters and the chamber of the Giants, the largest and best known of ‘Palazzo Te’. Only guide dogs for the blind people can enter, so it is better to organize this beforehand and maybe take turns!
And if you want to explore the unspoiled nature of the park ‘Parco del Mincio’ to get lost between sounds and breathtaking views, your four legged friend can join you for a cruise on the river.

And if you fancy a typical dish of Mantova in the evening, at ‘Osteria delle Erbe’ also your four legged friend is welcome and can enter without any problem.