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Living in Italy: The Real Deal

We are two Dutchmen who moved to Italy in 2008 to try and enjoy the good life while operating a bed and breakfast.  It all started rather in a hurry, as I wrote in my blog of the day, when we found our dream house: “With my right foot still on the pavement, the estate agent’s car was already pulling …

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Tiramisù: The Best Italian Dessert!

Tiramisù is the Italian dessert par excellence, a masterpiece, and it’s very easy to make since all you need are just four main ingredients: mascarpone, eggs, Savoiardi (biscuits) and coffee.  In some variations the cream is also flavored with Marsala liquor. The dessert’s origins are often disputed between the following Italian regions: Veneto, Friuli Venezia Giulia and Tuscany. Ingredients:  To prepare it according to …

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A Quick Guide To The Italian Christmas Markets

It is nearly the time…  It is nearly the Christmas time…  But most importantly – it is nearly the time for visiting the Italian Christmas Markets! During this special time – all cities are getting “dressed up” with a lot of colourful lights and decorations.  And all the shops are getting swamped with people trying to buy the best gifts ever. The …

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A Spontaneous Weekend Trip to Milan – Visiting The Top Sights

Let me tell you a secret.  Whenever I’m feeling bored or that serious case of wanderlust gets me, I’m browsing for cheap flights.  It’s usually happening on our low cost airline, Wizzair’s website; sometimes they offer ridiculously good deals – if you’re lucky enough you can get a return ticket for the price of a dinner.  I’m just picking whatever …

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Cinque Terre, Italy – That’s Amore!

Hello friends! I LOVE Italy (I’ve been so happy there! 😜)!  For me Cinque Terre summarizes what Italy has to offer best – a permanent atmosphere of romance! But you might ask: what about Venice?  What about Rome?  Aren’t they soooo romantic? True, they are, but each one of us has their own fantasies about a place.  For me romance in Italy is …

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One Day In The Chianti: 5 Things To Do To Enjoy It!

If you are in Florence you cannot miss the opportunity to spend at least one day in the Chianti countryside. I will tell you here the 5 things to do to enjoy it at it’s best! The Chianti area in Tuscany extends over the provinces of Florence and Siena.  Chianti area is one of the most beautiful in the whole region, as well as …

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Monterosso Al Mare – The Quiet Giant

Monterosso al Mare is not the most scenic village of Cinque Terre but I have to say it’s my favorite one! Being the largest of five towns, Monterosso al Mare is usually the one people choose for accommodation when they are spending more than one day in Cinque Terre since it has the biggest choice of hotels. I hate crowds.  I get a little …

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Bucatini all’Amatriciana – The Original Recipe

Bucatini all’Amatriciana is another traditional Italian dish from Amatrice.  Amatrice is a small village close to the city of Rieti, in Lazio Region. Everybody has probably heard about the terrible Earthquake and the enormous tragedy that hit this small village and the surrounding area, last August. Hundreds of people lost their life and those who were lucky enough to survive lost …

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The 5 Best Panoramic Locations in Florence

If you’re heading to Florence and are wondering about the best panoramic views in the city – this article is for you.  We will not only tell you where they are, we will also show you how to visit them in a good sequential order, so you could save time, and experience this city from the best angles that it has …

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How to prepare the perfect “Panzanella”

Italy is known worldwide for its history, the beauty of its cities and of course its food: Panzanella is something you have to try at least once! Mediterranean Diet is as easy as it is delicious with great simplicity of its ingredients.  Bread, pasta, tomatoes, olive oil, fish, seasonal fruit and vegetables that are easy to find and cook. Dishes and recipes often come …

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The Medieval Charm of Val d’Orcia

Visiting the Val d’Orcia is probably one of the first things you have to do if you are visiting Tuscany’s countryside. Stunning panoramas and amazing high quality local food, such as the “Pecorino” cheese of Pienza (a typical cheese made with sheep’s milk) and wines like the Brunello di Montalcino or the Nobile di Montepulciano, will impress you and from the very …

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Colorful Homes of Burano

This vibrant little island named Burano is a must-see place for anyone visiting Venice for the first time.  Inhabited mostly by fishermen and their families, this island is famous for its brightly painted homes, which earned this town a top place in numerous “most colorful” lists of the World. So why should you visit Burano? The number one reason why you should visit …

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The Enchanting Town of Pisa

The Leaning Tower of Pisa is one of the most interesting and widely recognized sights in the World.  This sight is so well-known that it is virtually on everybody’s bucket list and many dream of visiting it one day.  And, I am happy to say that I finally got my lucky chance of seeing it in person this June 2016, yay! Since we …

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Crime, Tourism, and the City of Naples

When I booked my ticket to Naples, I didn’t know of its terrible reputation being one of the most criminal cities in Italy, and in Europe.  From what I remembered reading about the South of Italy earlier was the general antipathy of the Northern (and Middle) regions of the country towards the South.  Italians consider people from the South to be …

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Summer Salad Pasta Recipe – Pasta alla Checca

Let me say, together with Pasta alla Carbonara, Pasta alla Checca is my best Pasta dish ever! While Pasta alla Carbonara is a bit more “complicated”, Pasta alla Checca is just a child’s play. When the summer heat becomes unbearable, here is a fragrant, fresh pasta dish.  I would say it is a Roman classic but Neapolitans might say the same, …

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How to Make the Perfect Spaghetti alla Carbonara!

The recipe for “Spaghetti alla Carbonara” is one of the most famous Roman cuisine pasta recipes and it is my favorite dish ever! If I am at a restaurant and would like to eat Pasta, this is what I order. Of course, being a regional dish you will mainly find it in Rome and Lazio Region.  I will not suggest …

How Are You Defined By Italy?

Last summer I closed my final textbook, clicked submit, waved goodbye to 8,000 words and 3 months of insanity (formally known as my dissertation), and temporarily postponed my ‘grown up’ job search.  Instead, I traded the cold, unforgiving walls of Exeter’s campus Library that I came to know so well in my final year of study, for pineapple pizza and …

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A Different Day in Milan: Advice From a Local

When you think or hear about Milan, you immediately associate it with the Duomo, the Sforzesco castle and the “quadrilatero della moda” – symbols that for sure had helped this city to make it recognizable all around the World.  But, let me say, Milan has definitely more to offer to its visitors. If you’re a tourist planning to stay some days …

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The Azure of the Amalfi Coast

Few places around the world are as iconic as the famed Amalfi Coast.  When I eventually told my parents that I visited this area with Gianluigi my mother gasped and expressed tremendous envy; apparently she had always wanted to go to the Amalfi coast.  I had not even realized it was so far south in Italy and practically a stone’s …

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Ischia: Island Retreat of Naples

Ischia is an island in the bay of Naples that takes approximately 40 minutes to reach by ferry.  Ischia is often overlooked because of its smaller neighbor, Capri, to the southeast in the same bay.  This is another oversight by travelers drawn to fame rather than knowledge of the area.  Not to say that places that have built their fame …