Nestled deep within the south region of Puglia, Italy, is the tiny city of Alberobello. It truly gives a feeling of the location in the south of Puglia, Italy, with its authentic, small-town feel, yet it is also ancient and gorgeous. Alberobello best known for it's Truli's the white washed conical style buildings that are scattered throughout the village. This is Puglia Southern Italy's lesser traveled region that many tourist never see or visit. This is Puglia Southern Italy's Authentic Small Towns.
Puglia also has about 500 miles of breathtaking coastline, lapped by both the Ionian and Adriatic Seas; plenty of seafood, as well as endless groves of olive trees and rock-walled orchards (Puglia is Italy's breadbasket, producing more olive oil, wine, and durum wheat than any other region).
Perfectly situated in the Mediterranean, with more than 500 miles of coastline, and the longest region of Italy's mainland, Puglia is squeezed between the Adriatic and Ionian Seas.
The heel of Italy's shoe, Puglia is known for its hilltop towns with white walls, its long, hot summers, its amazing beaches, and it is considered to be one of Europe's best summer destinations for travelers.
One popular city is located at the heel of Italy's boot. Its the small city of Polignano a Mare and it is nestled along the Adriatic coast, one of Italy's prettiest little towns. Built into the cliffs, Polignano a Mare is one of the most scenic towns on the coast, and below Polignano a Mare is a beautiful sandy beach.
Beyond the Baroque town of Lecce is the Salento peninsula, known for its good beaches and scenic towns.
The setting alone is enough to make Ostuni one of the most amazing cities of Southern Italy. The parade of hillforts, castles, and huge cathedrals; the amazing people, so welcoming, charming, and helpful; and, of course, the amazing cuisine (some have gone as far as saying that Puglia has Italy's best food, which is an impressive claim in a country that is internationally celebrated for its cooking).
Italy's eastern coastline has plenty of resort towns, but also many cool places to see and hidden gems. While I only shared some of the prettiest towns in Italy's Southern Region of Puglia, there are many more towns that you should check out that we have yet to visit, but are hoping to.
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As a Travel Advisor I have been to some pretty spectacular places in the world. I get to learn about so many different regions. All of them have their own beauty and appeal. The Italian Lakes region has been on my list for some time. I have been wanting to visit to discover for myself everything I have been hearing about the region. I am sure most of you feel the same, yet it is hard to travel everywhere. There just doesn't seem to be enough time. So, if you are planning your visit to Italy consider the Italian Lakes region where you just might discover a Foodies paradise.
Visiting the Italian Lakes regions of Northern Italy you will discover it has a charm all it's own. It's where you can immerse yourself in one-of-a-kind experiences and gorgeous accommodations. I am thrilled to share what I have learned with you.
Lake Como marries Italian Hospitality and unparalleled natural beauty. It's also conveniently located --just a 90 minute car ride from Milan. Surrounded by green valleys.
Lake Como is also a food lover's paradise. On Lake Como, you can eat risotto by a waterfront ristorante or enjoy a private tasting with a family of cheesemakers! Many food artisans here preach a "zero kilometer" philosophy --using ONLY ingredients cultivated within the surrounding 1 kilometer! Como glistens. Como enchants. Como makes the mouth water.
I'm delighted to share with you 3 Must-Try Foods on Lake Como:
While most Americans associate Italy with pasta, it's actually more common to find risotto in much of Northern Italy. Treat yourself to a creamy bowl of risotto --typically topped in healthy perch filets or decadent white truffles!
2.Taleggio & Gorgonzola.
Italy's northern regions are famed for creamy, ripened cheeses --like, gorgonzola (a blue cheese) and taleggio (a semisoft cheese). Travelers can experience a private tasting with the locals that produce them --nibbling in the cellars where the cheese is aged!
Framed by green valleys and snow-capped Alps, the land around Lake Como nourishes numerous farms. Near the town of Lecco, you can taste prosciutto at a family-run farm. In business for over 60 years, the farm prides itself on traditional Slow Food techniques. You'll get to hear family stories and tour the caves where the prosciutto is crafted!
Now that your appetite is wet let’s discover some experiences you can have while you are in the Lakes Regions
With its rich culinary culture, you can experience Como’s cuisine firsthand with a perfect food and wine experience on one of the lake’s northern reaches. It is here you will enjoy an exquisite lunch featuring local dishes. After your wonderful lunch head to a nearby farm, to sample artisanal cheese and ice cream. Finish your day with a delightful wine and charcuterie tasting at a local cellar.
With your Lake Como food and Wine Tour you will
Now let’s journey beyond tourist fare that most tourist experience and reach out and explore authentic local cuisine with this food tour. Stopping at favorite eateries hidden in Como’s old town with this Lake Como Food Tour- You will sample a variety of northern Italian delectable and learn about traditional local wine and food from a local guide. You will have to opportunity to stroll past the cathedral and experience walking through the historic center, as you sample plates of charcuterie, “polenta unicia”, “sciatt”, and other regional specialties-. Let’s not forget the wine. Your samples will be paired with excellent Italian Wines.
With your Lake Como Food Tour you will
For a completely unique experience that is definitely hands on a cooking class quite possibly might be in order. You are in Lake Como so not any cooking class will be suitable. In order to experience Lake Como it must be a Luxury Cooking Class with a Chef in Bellagio. Nothing less will suffice.
With you very own cooking class you will join others to discover the secrets of authentic Italian cuisine. It is here you will visit a traditional villa on the banks of Lake Como for this home cooking experience. Your in Lake Como so of course it is in a Villa. Get hands-on as you prepare a variety of appetizers, pastas, and meat dishes. Of course after you prepare your dishes you will experience everything you have just created with the accompaniment of a local wine and dessert.
With your Luxury Lake Como Cooking Class with a Chef in Bellagio you will
Now that you have not only learned about the three must try foods of Lake Como and you have delved into some of the experiences you can have on your visit, isn’t it time to plan your own amazing trip to Lake Como? Where you can enjoy all the region has to offer from its beautiful scenery to exquisite foods you will not be dissapointed.
Who's hungry for Italy? email me Teresa@travelwithgraceandstyle for your own delicious Italy adventure. Or just go HERE and let me know what experience you would like to curate for your very own Italy vacation experience.
The menu of authentic travel options is endless! I'd love to share with you the Europe few tourists ever experience. Let me reach out to my Italy contacts and let us curate your Italian Lakes experience.
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Travel with Grace and Style is an Italy travel specialist and when
traveling to Italy there are 10 top things you should know. There are many more as this list could go on but these tips will not only save you time but may help you enjoy the experience. We travel to Italy almost yearly and enjoy sharing our discoveries.
First on our list of Top 10 things to know before you travel to Italy is buy Tickets Prior..... If you do anything my top suggestion is to buy your tickets early and prior to your travel dates. This insures you are not standing in line waiting with the rest of the masses. Those who procrastinated or thought they would just wait and show up and buy their tickets in line are often shocked to see the lines. Save yourself and book ahead.
Off Season Travel.....Italy is my favorite travel destination along with the million other's who visit her yearly. In the height of the summer season it is almost packed beyond comfort. Travel off season if you can. In the late spring time the weather is just starting to be lovely but you still may need a sweater. Fall is often beautiful in Italy. Winter the crowds are thinner and unless it is during Christmas holidays your experience will be much less crowded.
Weather....Italy has decent weather any time of the year. Although summer in Rome in August can be brutal according to most, many Italians head out of the cities during this time. Winter yes it can snow, especially in places like The Dolomites and Lake Como and even Rome but the weather is definitely doable. The Average temperature in Rome in February is 52/42 not too bad for a visit. Rainiest month tends to be November for Rome.
There are very few toilet seats...… Yes in and throughout Italy there is a common known problem of toilet seats or the lack there of in public facilities. I will leave it at this.
Coffee... Often enjoyed al banco or at the bar with Cappuccino in the morning, a macchiato for an afternoon pick me up and an espresso after dinner. Quick pointer milky coffee in the morning only.
Breakfast....is often a lite meal consisting of small pastry and cappuccino of course "al banco".
Sundays......in Italy are for family. A day spent relaxing and having brunch after Mass.
Transit... Italy has a very good transport infrastructure. The rail network is extensive, especially in the north, and it includes a high speed rail network that joins the major cities of Italy from Naples through northern cities such as Milan and Turin.
Pick pockets will be in all the tourist sites. They are good. Keep watch and always keep your belongings close. Just as you would do in any other major city.
Hotel...….The hotel is not just a place to lay your head. It's not just a place to sleep. The hotel is part of the experience. The place you return to after a long day viewing the amazing city and countryside and should never be just a place to sleep. It should be part of the experience, part of the journey, and part of your incredible visit to Italy.
So please if you are planning a visit to Italy I would love to assist you. Italy is one of Teresa @ Travel with Grace and Style specialities. My own personal knowledge is fueled by my passion for Italy itself.
Our trips are specifically designed down to the finest detail around your tastes and interests. We will listen to what you want and then carefully design an individual trip to match, working within your budget and with an absolute commitment to quality. We have true experts for each and every one of our destinations, our expertise comes from having traveled to the destination and securing specialized partners in each of our selected destinations. Our curator will design a trip around you, show you the highlights in a different light, and introduce you to places and experiences that others might miss. Everyone has a different style and the experiences we curate are exactly designed with that in mind. From group travel, to individual, to faith based we have a commitment to excellence. I would love to help you discover Italy just fill out the form.
You’ve ambled Amalfi.
You’ve ventured to Venice.
You’ve feasted in Florence.
You’ve roamed through Rome.
You’re not what we’d call a newbie to Italy. You’ve tasted Chianti in Tuscany. You’ve perused Pompeii with a private guide. You’ve gazed at the Blue Grotto off Capri’s coast. With so much Italy under your belt, the usual sights — Michelangelo’s David in Florence or St. Mark’s Square in Venice, — don’t compel you like they once did.
What’s left to savor in Italy for a return traveler? What delicious Italian destinations are hiding just off the beaten track? One of my favorite fall escapes in Italy is Umbria. Visiting Umbria is easy as it's located just 90 minutes from the center of Rome, Umbria feels like you’re stepping back in time. Driving the countryside here, you’ll see medieval hamlets rising from the distance.
As Italy’s only completely landlocked region, Umbria brims with wooded glens and winery-draped hillsides. In the fall, the vineyards shift from green to bright red here — signaling the annual grape harvest. On Umbria’s many farms, you can meet the sheep whose milk makes regional cheeses like pecorino umbro or ricotta salata. And, in the region’s northern swathes, you can taste the famed salami norciani — dried, cured pork salami.
Are you hungry for a third or fourth helping of Italy? Discover Umbria in the fall, relishing a land of real traditions and spectacular scenery.
Below you’ll find 4 Delicious Activities You can only try in Umbria.
CHOCOLATE-TASTING TOUR (PERUGIA)
Sweet lovers from across the globe flock to the hilltop town of Perugia each October for the annual Eurochocolate Festival. But, sugar fiends in-the-know skip the festival’s long lines and crowded streets — visiting the town before or after the cocoa-fueled festivities. Perugia’s stone streets are home to both boutique chocolatiers and the world-famous Perugina chocolate company. With a local guide, travelers can go behind-the-scenes at family-run chocolate shops — observing how cocoa beans are transformed into that most decadent of dolci.
SALAMI & CHEESE MAKING (NORCIA)
Not far from Perugia, you will find the quaint countryside of Norcia. This area is famed throughout Italy and the world for its porky products — including salami, copa, prosciutto, and capocollo. While some are cured using nothing but salt and air, others are seasoned with local wine or pine juniper berries. Italians rarely eat salami on its own, preferring to pair it with a cheese. Food-loving travelers can spend the day farm-hopping in Umbria, enjoying a tasting of pecorino here and a nibble of prosciutto there — enjoyed, naturally, with a glass or two of local wine.
LACK TRUFFLE HUNT & PASTA
Far from the stone streets of Umbria’s towns lies one of the region’s most prized foods — the black truffle. Aided by specially-trained dogs, capable of sniffing out truffles that grow underground, you can hunt this famed fungus in Umbria’s lovely woods. After a brisk walk in the forest, you return to our guide’s rustic farm — with a bounty of truffles in tow. Once at the farm, you’ll make pasta by hand with the truffle hunter’s wife. Your sauce? You guessed it: freshly shaved truffles.
WINE, WINE, WINE
Grapes have been grown in Umbria since Roman times. Driving from town to town here, you’ll pass some of the most scenic wine country in Italy — dotted with hilltop towns and rolling vineyards. While the tannin-rich reds are largely made with Sangiovese grape, the whites from the Orvieto area are fruity-but-dry. Less well known to tourists than Tuscany, Umbria boasts countless family-operated wineries. In fact, you can enjoy tastings in Umbria’s private cellars — hearing about the history of wine production in this region from the vineyard owners themselves!
Which European escape are you craving these days? I’m here to take the stress out of trip-planning, helping you to experience the Europe locals love. Hit the Contact Me and lets get to planning.