Little Italy Cleveland Celebrates the Feast of the Assumption

Ever since 1898 the annual celebration of the Feast of the Assumption has been  the highlight of the Italian-American community in Cleveland’s Little Italy. Occurring in August to coincide with Aug 15,  the Catholic feast day of the  Assumption of … Continued

Italy Travel Planning – Milan’s La Scala Opera

posted in: Italy Travel, Italy Travel Planning, TRAVEL | 27

I’ll be headed to Italy soon and I’m flying into Milan mainly because I found such a great airfare on Emirates  back in February. I’m flying non-stop from JFK in New York to Malpensa in Milan for less than $600 … Continued

Traveling to Positano

As I mentioned in a recent blog post I am returning to Italy this fall and of course am thrilled making travel plans and just thinking about it.  My destination is Positano, and for the first time, I will stay … Continued

Italy Traffic and Rules of the Road

  Italy traffic can be crazy to be sure, and I never thought I’d drive in Italy, but I have and somehow lived to tell about it. You can read about some of my experiences in my older blog posts … Continued

Outdoor Shrines in Italy – Italian Culture

I love noticing the differences in the Italian culture, and one that seems pronounced is the existence of outdoor shrines in almost every city and town in Italy. Despite the commonly-held perception that Italy is a Catholic country, the latest … Continued

Burano – A Colorful Gem in the Venice Lagoon

On your next trip to Venice, don’t miss the opportunity to experience the unique island of Burano. This community has charm of its own with its brightly painted small houses that  artists and photographers dream about. Located in the Venetian … Continued

The Beach at Amalfi

The Amalfi Coast in southern Italy is known for its undeniable beauty and mind-blowing views. Every time I visit I feel like I’m in heaven.  Most towns have their own beaches and this section of the beach at Amalfi caught … Continued

Limoncello – Drink of the Amalfi Coast

posted in: Italy Travel, Made in Italy | 29

Almost synonymous with the Amalfi Coast is limoncello, the refreshing liqueur, aperitif, and digestivo made from the large lemons grown in Campania. While controversy exists regarding the origins of this popular drink, limoncello prevails as the drink of choice anywhere … Continued

Around the Corner in Verona

Verona is arguably one of the most beautiful and romantic cities in Italy. After all it is the city of Romeo and Juliet. Via Mazzini leading to the stunning Piazza delle Erbe is made of pink marble. The old Roman … Continued

Father’s Day 2016

posted in: Italian lifestyle and culture, Writing | 18

I realize how very fortunate I am to still have my father. He celebrated his 91st birthday recently and lives an active life. The US life expectancy for American males today is 76.3 years, so I guess our Italian family … Continued

Life in Italy

Daily life on the Amalfi Coast can be challenging, but this robust Italian smiles as he easily climbs more than three hundred steps to and from work every day. Seventy-three years young, Crescenzo is the caretaker of an abandoned castle … Continued

Why Are San Marzano Tomatoes Special?

When chefs throughout the world prepare authentic Italian sauce, San Marzano tomatoes are their preference. These thin, pointy, sweet plum tomatoes  are essential ingredients for an authentic Pizza Napolitana, according to the Verace Pizza Napolitana Association in Naples, Italy. San … Continued

Caltagirone – Hilltop Italy Town

A view of another hill town in Italy – This one from the Sicilian Baroque town of Caltagirone, a city of about 40,000 people. Not on the radar for too many travelers to Italy, this is one of my favorite places … Continued

Learning the Italian Language

Ten years ago I couldn’t understand Italian and I couldn’t speak Italian. I hesitated to travel to Italy because I was intimidated by the language barrier. I am so glad that has changed, because since then, I have fallen in … Continued

Italian Bank Experience

As much as I love Italy, some aspects of the Italian lifestyle are far from efficient. The Italian bank experience is one of these molto difficile situations. For the most part I have used Bancomats (ATM’s) to withdraw money in … Continued

Architecture of Italy

One of the many highlights in Italy is the spectacular architecture. Not only the age of some of Italy’s monuments but the style and sheer beauty is what strikes me. Spanning almost 3000 years, Italy’s diverse architectural styles reflect the … Continued

Sunset in Puglia ~ Polignano a Mare

Give me a sunset on the water in Italy and I think I am in Paradise! Last June I was fortunate enough to be in the right place at the right time and capture this dazzling view in the seaside … Continued

Lombardy: Milan and More – Guest Post

Today I am  pleased to feature a guest post by Sara Mazzucato, a copywriter from Padua, Italy. Enjoy. Lombardy mon amour: From the romantic Sforza Castle to the beautiful Lake Maggiore and its “Fornaci di Caldè” Have you ever been … Continued

The Italian Lifestyle

I love seeing these roadside fruit and vegetable shops on wheels. I noticed this one in the seaside town of Riposto, south of Taormina in Sicily. Really when you think about it, this is a perfect business – it’s mobile … Continued

Street View in Bologna

posted in: Italy Travel, TRAVEL | 45

A street scene in Italy that could actually be anywhere there, but this one is from Bologna. I am fascinated by the buildings in Italy, the shuttered windows, the flower boxes with thriving plant life and colorful seasonal blooms. The … Continued

Book Winners Announced – Congratulations!!!

posted in: Writing | 12

Thank you to everyone who participated in my blog follower contest!!! 15 lucky winners have been selected at random and it’s time to announce the winners! The first five people selected at random have won an autographed copy of my … Continued

Hiking the Path of the Gods

Photo by Ken Mayer (Flickr) “Sheer beauty prevails as the steep rocky cliffs of the Amalfi Coast meet the undulating waters of the Mediterranean Sea. Tiered colorful towns appear which were once simple fishing villages. The Amalfi Coast is tranquility … Continued

Everyday Life in Rome – Photo of the Day

While I love seeing the ancient monuments and beautiful landmarks in Rome, I am  drawn to observing the local people in their everyday lives in Italy. This image is not your typical tourist photo. I saw this man standing near … Continued

Celebration Time with a BOOK GIVEAWAY

posted in: Italy Travel, TRAVEL, Writing | 74

Yay! It’s celebration time and I am announcing a BOOK GIVEAWAY as a THANK YOU to all of you! My blog has reached a milestone with over 200,000 hits and almost 9,000 followers now. So to celebrate this, I am … Continued

Taormina’s Greek Theater – Teatro Greco

Taormina is one of the most popular and beautiful places in Sicily. It was my first stop in Sicily and I fell in love immediately. I’d recommend this classy resort city to anyone planning a trip to Sicilia, the southern … Continued

The Allure of Italy – A Matter of Perception

In another part of the world, this might look like a rough section of a city, or even a ghetto.  But in Italy,  crumbling stone foundations and graffiti-laced walls exude a particular type of charm. The allure of Italy is … Continued

Life in Italy – Photo of the Day

posted in: Italy Photo, Italy Travel | 5

A day in the life of this elderly Italian man in Palermo, a shoemaker who makes men’s shoes by hand. I am always intrigued watching skilled craftsmen at work in Italy. If you want to read more about this shoemaker … Continued

Amalfi Coast – Rugged and Beautiful

posted in: Italy Travel, TRAVEL | 17

The Amalfi Coast with its rugged landscape is one of Italy’s beautiful vacation destinations. Certainly it’s a favorite of mine, as you know by now. I find myself wondering how homes, hotels and restaurants were built on  these cliffs and hillsides … Continued

Why Travel to Small Villages in Italy?

I discovered the magic of traveling to  small villages in Italy. This off-the-beaten path type of travel allowed me to have a real feel for the people and to experience the local flavor of an area. With no crowds, I … Continued

Monteriggioni – Another Hilltop Town in Tuscany

Several years ago  I spent ten glorious days in Tuscany, making Siena my hub so that I could take day trips from there easily. On the way home from visiting some wineries, I was fortunate enough to be able to … Continued

Driving in Positano

  Driving in Positano is a challenge, to say the least. This photo says it all. Do you notice how the cars on the left side of the road are parked facing both directions? I doubt if any rules exist … Continued

Rimini – Popular Seaside Resort in Italy

Rimini has been the summer seaside resort hot spot in Italy ever since 1843, especially for the Italians. Known for beach parties and seaside vacations, Rimini is the place to go for a summer holiday, and in August the place … Continued

Tuscany – Popular Italy Destination

When I think of Tuscany I think of an image like this. Rolling hills, the countryside, and  tall dark green cypress trees. One of the most popular destinations in Italy, Tuscany is of course,  much more. Tuscany is made up … Continued

San Gimignano – Town of Beautiful Towers in Tuscany

posted in: Italy Travel, TRAVEL | 31

You have probably heard your traveling friends rave about the Italian town of San Gimignano, how it is a preserved medieval village in Tuscany, and how it is a “must-see” location in Italy. Now that I have been there myself … Continued

Restaurant Recommendations in Italy

Certainly one of the best things about traveling to Italy is the food. Mangia, mangia! In Italy there are thousands of restaurants and almost every one of them is Italian. I almost laugh when someone asks for a recommendation of … Continued

Conversational Italian for Travelers – Book Review

Occasionally I like to introduce an author or  feature a book about Italy or anything Italian. Today I am honored to recommend a book I recently discovered, and I think you’ll like it too. Conversational Italian for Travelers Just the … Continued

Plan Your Italy Trip Now!

It’s that time when a lot of people I know are beginning to decide on travel plans for the year. Airfares to Europe have dropped and the euro is low, so this is a perfect time to make plans for … Continued

Life in Sicily – Photo of the Day

On the streets of Sicily you’ll find real people, the locals who work hard and take pride in everything they do. They do it with a smile and in my experience, they always seem happy to engage in conversation. It’s … Continued

A Trip to the Hospital in Venice

I recently retired from a lifelong career as a critical-care nurse and I have always been curious about hospitals in foreign countries. Often I have been tempted to walk inside and have a look around. Usually there isn’t enough time, … Continued

Photo of the Day – Life in Naples, Italy

posted in: Italy Photo, Italy Travel, TRAVEL | 8

Here’s how pizza is delivered in Naples, Italy. Seems pretty efficient, don’t you think? I’d love to hear your your thoughts. Please leave a comment Ciao and grazie

Travel Tips in Italy – Embrace the Italian Lifestyle

After seven trips to Italy I have learned a lot about the Italian lifestyle.  Although there are lots of articles, blogs and books written with great travel tips for Italy, I have jotted down just a few things to keep … Continued

An Evening in Siena – Book Excerpt (Audio)

In 2011 I went to Italy for three months as a solo traveler. That adventure is detailed in my first book, Memoirs of a Solo Traveler – My  Love Affair with Italy.  During that trip I stayed in Siena for … Continued

The Italian Lifestyle – Photo of the Day

An elderly Italian woman enjoying some sunshine in Colle d’Anchise, a small village in the Molise region of Italy. This is the village of my grandparents. I had a nice conversation in Italian with her. She could be a distant … Continued

Daydreaming about Positano

posted in: Italy Travel, TRAVEL | 10

I find myself daydreaming about Positano sometimes. I’ve been there many times, but this past summer was the first time that I stayed there. And now I  yearn to return. Positano casts a magical spell on anyone who’s experienced her … Continued

Caffè Sospeso – A Naples Tradition

Naples is a city where coffee is woven into the fabric of everyday life, and the tradition of caffè sospeso is part of it. The custom of “suspended coffee,” may relate to the history behind today’s pay it forward practice; … Continued

A Funny Thing Happened in Italy

I thought it might be time for a little humor, and I have a funny story to tell from my recent trip to Italy. Travel is fun yet flexibility is a necessity. If you can’t be flexible, you may end … Continued

Win a Luxury Stay – 3 nights in a Baglioni Hotels Suite

posted in: TRAVEL | 0

  Baglioni Hotels wants you to tell them why you love London in their #WhyILoveLondon Instagram competition. You can win 3 nights for 2 in a  luxury Baglioni  Hotels Suite in Rome, Venice, Milan, Florence, or London! I have not … Continued

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