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9 of the Fifty great cultural tours for 2013 proposed by Telegraph

9 of the Fifty great cultural tours for 2013 proposed by Telegraph | Italia Mia | Scoop.it

Below I have picked out 9 italian of 50 international best cultural tours for 2013

  • 6 Emperors and Artists, Italy

A great option for those new to the cultural treasures of Italy, this tour promises all the show-shopping Italian moments, from gondola rides in Venice to gelati in the Roman sunshine. It also offers a snapshot of Italy’s artistic legacy, including an expert-guided tour of Florence’s Uffizi Gallery; and the many artistic riches housed in the Vatican City at Rome, including that famous paint-job by Michelangelo.
July 8 and 22, from £4,489 (0845 485 1525; abercrombiekent.com)

  • 8 Norman Might, Baroque Splendours: Puglia Across the Ages

The historian Charles Freeman leads this “leisurely” exploration of Puglia, the heel of Italy. It includes visits to a wide range of monuments from medieval and later periods, and time to absorb the magnificent Baroque architecture of Lecce and the much lesser-known Norman cathedrals and castles of the regio.
September 23-30, £1,995. Ciceroni Travel (01869 811167; ciceroni.co.uk)

  • 11 Florentine Palazzi

A new itinerary focusing on Renaissance palaces and allowing access to several that are normally closed to the public. These include Palazzi Corsini, Lanfredini, Pandolfini and Capponi all’Annunziata. Special arrangements also allow entry to the Uffizi’s 16th-century Vasari Corridor. The leader is Dr Joachim Strupp, an expert in Italian art.
November 6-10, £1,920. Martin Randall Travel

  • 15 The Ancient Greeks and Romans of Naples

Rupert Smith, a classicist and teacher, brings the stories of ancient Greece and Rome to life on this week-long Easter holiday tour aimed at families with children aged 11 and over. Boat rides and a stay on a mozzarella farm combine with trips to Naples, Pompeii, Amalfi and Paestum to provide a good balance of fun and education.
April 4-11, £1,630 excluding flights. Cazenove and Lloyd (020 7384 2332; cazloyd.com)

  • 23 Pompeii, Herculaneum & Classical Campania

A chance for special, behind-the-scenes access to some of Pompeii’s private monuments and buildings is why this tour is among Andante Travels’ most popular options. Spring and autumn departures are led by a range of expert lecturers including William Manning, Emeritus Professor of Roman Archaeology at Cardiff University.
Seven departures March to May and September to October, £1,365. Andante Travels (01722 713800; andantetravels.com)

  • 34 Verdi at La Scala, Milan

Kirker is offering several trips to La Scala; given that this is Verdi’s year, the one that includes two of his greatest works in three days looks like the one to pick. The productions of Aida and Don Carlo are conducted by Fabio Luisi, and the trip is accompanied by Sandy Burnett, the musician and former Radio 3 presenter. October 28-31, £1,290. Kirker Holidays (020 7593 1899; kirkerholidays.com)

  • 41 Eastern Sicily

Private visits to gardens in the company of Robin Lane Fox, reader in ancient history at Oxford University, gardener and occasional contributor to Telegraph Travel. The itinerary includes palaces in Catania and Syracuse, the amphitheatre at Taormina, the Baroque town of Noto and a trip to see the Riace bronzes.
Sept 13-19, £2,985 excluding flights. Fine Art Travel (020 7437 8553; finearttravel.co.uk)

  • 45 Gastronomic Piedmont

Piedmont, centre of the Slow Food movement, arguably takes its food and wine more seriously than anywhere else in Italy. This tour includes visits to Alba, the world’s white-truffle capital, and to several Barolo wineries, plus meals at simple trattorias and Michelin-starred restaurants. It also leaves time to explore the region’s art and architecture – which are also of the highest order. The lecturer is Marc Millon, co-author of Frommer’s Food Lover’s Companion to Italy.
Oct 5-11, £2,660. Martin Randall Travel (020 8742 3355; martinrandall.co.uk)

  • 46 Gastronomic tour of Sicily

Peter Sommer is best known for his cultural cruises in Turkish gulets, but he also offers themed trips to other European destinations. This itinerary in Sicily takes in both gastronomical and historical highlights and is led by Marcello Baglioni, a cultural specialist, and Dr Michael Metcalfe, an archaeologist. It includes cooking classes, visits to local producers of cheese, olives, honey and wines, and numerous tastings, including one of traditional modicano chocolate.
Oct 5-12, £2,495 excluding flights. Peter Sommer (01600 888220; petersommer.com)

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TV3 Ireland AM travel to Italy- Bologna and Pasta Making

Sinead visits the beautiful city of Bologna where she took in some of the sights and tried her hand at making her very own pasta!
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Discover the archipelago of the Isole Ponziane in the Thyrrenian Sea

Discover the archipelago of the Isole Ponziane in the Thyrrenian Sea | Italia Mia | Scoop.it

South of Rome and northwest of Naples in the Gulf of Gaeta lie six islands known as Isole Ponziane, or Pontine Islands. This archipelago in the Tyrrhenian Sea is named collectively after the largest island, Ponza, which is a haven for water sports enthusiasts. Legend tells that the island was named after the Roman governor of Judea, Pontius Pilate, however historians have since disproved this and agree that the name is of Greek origin. [...]

Mariano Pallottini's insight:

What to See:

Ponza

  • Grotta della Maga Circe on the west side of the island
  • Spaggia di Chaia di Luna (half-moon beach)
  • Capo Bianco
  • Spiaggia del Frontone
  • Cala Fonte
  • Faraglioni di Lucia Rosa

Zannone - an uninhabited island

  • remains of a ruined 13th century Benedictine convent

Palmarola - island with a craggy coastline and menacing cliffs

  • spectacular grottos
  • Faraglione di Mezzogiorno
  • Faraglione di San Silverio
  • restaurants

Gavi - private uninhabited island that is home to wild rabbits and a rare type of lizard. There are no boat trips to Gavi and visitors are not allowed on this protected nature
Ventotene

  • volcanic landscape
  • natural tuff formations 

Santo Stefano - just 400 m in diameter

  • The prison that was originally built by the Bourbons in 1797.


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37 Places You Need To Visit In Italy

37 Places You Need To Visit In Italy | Italia Mia | Scoop.it

While the food in Italy is reason enough to visit, the country is filled with famous works of art, exceptionally beautiful cities, and gorgeous lakes and mountains.
We compiled a list of 37 sites in Italy you should see at least once in your lifetime.

  1. Drive along the gorgeous cliffs of the Amalfi Coast.
  2. See Michelangelo's famous statue of David in Florence's Galleria dell'Accademia.
  3. Admire the colourful homes in Isola di Burano.
  4. Float through the Blue Grotto, a sea cave in Capri with stunning blue light reflected off of the water.
  5. Hike in scenic Cinque Terre and explore the charming cliffside villages.
  6. Explore the ancient ruins of Pompeii,
  7. Eat tagliatelle al ragu, AKA bolognese sauce, in Bologna.
  8. View Leonardo Da Vinci's painting, The Last Supper, in Milan. 
  9. Take a boat around Lago di Como, one of the most beautiful lakes in Italy.
  10. Watch artists blow glass by hand to create incredible works of art on Murano Island.
  11. Ski the Dolomites, a mountain range in the northern Italian Alps, and explore the charming ski village of Cortina d'Ampezzo.
  12. [...]
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From Hollywood to Pisa: Will Smith’s Selfie of Leaning Tower Goes Viral

From Hollywood to Pisa: Will Smith’s Selfie of Leaning Tower Goes Viral | Italia Mia | Scoop.it

Pisa got a big publicity boost when American actor and singer Will Smith took a selfie with the Leaning Tower in the background and posted it on his Facebook page. In the blink of an eye, the photo went viral and got more than 3 million likes. [...]

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I'll Teach You to Cook Under the Tuscan Sun

I'll Teach You to Cook Under the Tuscan Sun | Italia Mia | Scoop.it
What's the mistake all amateur cooks make? Cutting boards that are too damn small. Not understanding salt. Thinking Italian food is full of garlic.
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Rome's Best Cappuccino at The Historic Sciascia Caffe' 1919

Rome's Best Cappuccino at The Historic Sciascia Caffe' 1919 | Italia Mia | Scoop.it

More than 2,000 satisfied Romans, the majority lawyers working at the nearby legal offices and courts, make a daily stop at the historic Sciascia Caffe 1919 in the Prati neighborhood.
It is a Roman institution, but it is rarely mentioned on lists of “musts” for visitors, and one could pass by without even noticing the entrance....Rome’s best cappuccino is served in delicate Richard Ginori porcelain cups...

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Italy's Gran Paradiso Mountain Paradise

Italy's Gran Paradiso Mountain Paradise | Italia Mia | Scoop.it

Italy's mountainous Gran Paradiso national park is aptly named - it is truly a mountain paradise. Whether you just want to laze around and soak up the scenery or wander the mountain paths, 

 it’s a lovely area in summer and winter. Under a thick coat of snow the area takes on a new dimension.

In summer, the lush greenery, glorious architecture of the mountain houses, rivers, waterfalls, abundant wildlife and, of course, mountains, make the Val d’Aosta area of Italy wondrous for outdoor lovers. [...]

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10 Ways to Spend Summer 2014 in Italy

10 Ways to Spend Summer 2014 in Italy | Italia Mia | Scoop.it

If you are in Italy during summers then it is important for you to look out for the 10 ways to spend summer in Italy. 

1. Taking a stroll in the Sudtirol
2. Drive down the Amalfi Coast
3. Watching Venice at First Light
4. Have Sicilian Ice Cream
5. Relish some great food in Piedmont
6. Find the quiet side of the Italian Lakes
7. Go for an experience at Sardinian Beach
8. Learn the Culinary Rules of Bologna
9. Enjoy the Roman Passeggiata
10. Navigate the Puglian Coast

read more click on the photo

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The Less Seen Tuscany: Marble Floors of Siena Cathedral

The Less Seen Tuscany: Marble Floors of Siena Cathedral | Italia Mia | Scoop.it

When you go into the Cathedral of Siena, the natural inclination is to look up at the majestic vaulted ceilings.
However, for a few months of the year (end of August to end of October) there is the uncovering “scoperchiamento” of this work of art of inlaid marble and you are allowed to view the Cathedral’s masterpiece underfoot.
Each illustration was drawn as a sketch by some of the most talented artists of the Renaissance (Pinturicchio, Sassetta, Domenico di Bartolo) and then transformed into detailed marble inlay by the master craftsmen of the time. [...]

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Things To Do In Tuscany: Siena's Two Palios

Things To Do In Tuscany: Siena's Two Palios | Italia Mia | Scoop.it

Did you know there's not just one Siena Palio - but two? The famous Medieval bareback horse race happens twice each summer in the historic center of Siena. [...]

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1564-2014 MICHELANGELO / Exhibitions - Musei Capitolini

1564-2014 MICHELANGELO / Exhibitions - Musei Capitolini | Italia Mia | Scoop.it
Documentary exhibition on the occasion of the 450th anniversary of the death of the great Florentine artist.

The exhibition Michelangelo. Incontrare un artista universale, covering the life and work of this colossus for all times, is to be held at the Musei Capitolini on the occasion of the 450th anniversary of the death of Michelangelo Buonarroti in Rome on 18 February 1564. In the heart of the city, in that very Piazza del Campidoglio which the genius of Michelangelo made unique in the world, over one hundred and fifty works, of which around seventy by the Tuscan artist, from many of the leading cultural institutions in Italy and elsewhere, are to commemorate the 450th anniversary of the death of an artist who was so magnificent as to have a lasting influence not only on the arts in Italy but also on all universally known culture. [...]

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Forte dei Marmi: a beach resort town in Versilia

Forte dei Marmi: a beach resort town in Versilia | Italia Mia | Scoop.it
Forte dei Marmi is a seaside town in Versilia, northern Tuscany: let's discover its beaches, main sights, events and how to reach it.
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Italy This Summer: Comiso in South East Sicily

Italy This Summer: Comiso in South East Sicily | Italia Mia | Scoop.it

Comiso in South East Sicily In his second Sicilian report Pat Keenan flew into a new airport, visited a charming town, admired some great artistic riches and had another encounter with dead monks [...]


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Saint James’ Feast in Caltagirone

Saint James’ Feast in Caltagirone | Italia Mia | Scoop.it
Saint James is one of the most celebrated saints in the Catholic Calendar, not only is he the patron saint of Spain, where his remains are housed in the Cathedral of Santiago de Compostela, but he is also the patron Saint of Caltagirone. Who was he?
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A quick guide to the Giostra Cavalleresca di Sulmona

A quick guide to the Giostra Cavalleresca di Sulmona | Italia Mia | Scoop.it

Sulmona’s Giostra Cavallaresca is a Medieval-style jousting tournament held every summer in the city’s main piazza. An ancient tradition which was revived in 1994, it now forms the highlight of the city’s entertainment calendar attracting visitors from far and wide.

Here is our quick guide to help you make the most of your experience! [...]

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Abruzzo: Food Lover’s Paradise

Abruzzo: Food Lover’s Paradise | Italia Mia | Scoop.it

Even if you have never been to Abruzzo, chances are you have tasted Abruzzese food.

But dried pasta is just the beginning of what this spectacular region, which stretches from the Apennine Mountains to the Adriatic coast, has to offer in the way of culinary delizie. The cuisine is a reflection of this varied topography.

Traditional meals in the mountains are hearty—nourishing soups of legumes and vegetables, sturdy pastas sauced with rich meat ragùs, and grilled and roasted lamb, mutton and pork.

Coastal cuisine [...]


5 Favorite Foods from Abruzzo

  1. Arrosticini
  2. Brodetto alla Vastese
  3. Maccheroni alla Chitarra
  4. Porchetta
  5. Scrippelle ‘mbusse
Mariano Pallottini's insight:

My 5 Favorite Foods from Abruzzo

  1. Pecora alla Callara
  2. Formaggio Fritto
  3. Le Virtù
  4. Rintroc'l col ragù di castrato
  5. Ferratelle
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Amid Italy’s art gems, tombs inspire, too

Amid Italy’s art gems, tombs inspire, too | Italia Mia | Scoop.it

What may surprise a visitor to Italy is how accessible, and how moving and beautiful, are the tombs and other formal memorials to artists that Italians dutifully and sometimes touchingly maintain. [...]

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4 Awesome Lake Destinations for Summer Vacations in Italy

4 Awesome Lake Destinations for Summer Vacations in Italy | Italia Mia | Scoop.it

We’ve rounded up a quick list of some of Italy’s best lake destinations for summer vacations in Italy! 

Lake Garda

Lake Maggiore

Lake Bolsena

Lake Como

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Italy remembers cycling champion who helped save Jews from the Nazis - theguardian

Italy remembers cycling champion who helped save Jews from the Nazis - theguardian | Italia Mia | Scoop.it

Gino Bartali saved hundreds of Jews by transporting counterfeit identity papers hidden in the frame of his bike.

He was the star Italian cyclist whose victory in the Tour de France on the eve of the second world war made him a favourite of fascist dictator Benito Mussolini. But he was also a devout Catholic who helped save hundreds of Jews from the Nazis by using his hero-status to courier false documents around Italy. [...]

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An Italian Winemaker Profile: The Lungarotti Family

An Italian Winemaker Profile: The Lungarotti Family | Italia Mia | Scoop.it

Lungarotti Winery in Umbria, Italy As an Italian expat, I have fallen in love with Umbria, and with Umbrian wine. Last fall, I had the pleasure of enjoying a day at the Lungarotti winery in Torgiano, a quaint town between Perugia and Assisi in the rolling hills of Umbria. I often talk about the passion of Italian winemakers, but I would soon learn how deep a family’s passion can go. Our tour guide at Lungarotti was Grazia, who had an interesting story of her own. She actually visited the winery with her school when she was only six years old and today, as a young adult, leads the company’s hospitality efforts. Lungarotti wines was founded by Giorgio Lungarotti in 1962, what started as a small hobby among family and friends. His passion for production grew and he studied and invested in the land and the vineyards to create the best possible wine the region could produce. Some refer to Giorgio as the one who "drew the world wine map in Umbria". He would soon amass a burgeoning wine

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Vesuvius: The most dangerous volcano in the world

Vesuvius: The most dangerous volcano in the world | Italia Mia | Scoop.it
Mount Etna may grab all the headlines these days, but the immense Vesuvius in presiding over the Gulf of Naples in Campania is a far deadlier, volcano. Its last eruption was 60 years ago in 1944 and since then, nothing. Is it about to remind the world of its presence?
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Casentinesi Forests National Park: a spectacular discovery

Casentinesi Forests National Park: a spectacular discovery | Italia Mia | Scoop.it

Casentinesi Forests National Park is one of the largest areas of forest in Europe, extraordinarily rich in flora and fauna and located between Tuscany and Emilia Romagna. The Casentino is crossed by the tributaries of the river Arno and extends from Monte Falterona to the Mandrioli Pass.

The Acquacheta waterfall

The ancient hamlet of Poggio and S. Benedetto in Alpe Abbey

The trail of the Mills

Castagno d’Andrea

Campigna

Casentinesi Forests National Park peaks

Lago degli Idoli

Camaldoli Monastery

La Verna Sanctuary

Click on the photo to read more

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Monterosso in Le Cinque Terre, Italy

Monterosso in Le Cinque Terre, Italy | Italia Mia | Scoop.it

Monterosso has a HUGE beach, which is the village's main identifier from the other four villages. The water is gorgeous and there are restaurants all up and down the beachfront. Lying on the beach was so relaxing and the big rock in the water at the edge of the beach is a great place to climb up and just take in the sights. [...]

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Summer Sales Kick Off in Italy

Summer Sales Kick Off in Italy | Italia Mia | Scoop.it

It’s summer sale time in Italy. From today, bargain hunters will be able to pick up summer clothes, shoes, and more at knock-down prices in shops throughout Italy.

The time has come for Italy’s fashion stores to rid themselves of summer wear so they can make space for the autumn and winter collections.

Unless you are a fashion victim who has to have latest designer gear, now is a good time to go do some shopping. Ladies who love shoes will have lots of fun.[...]

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Best New UNESCO World Heritage Sites: vineyard landscape of Piedmont: Langhe-Roero and Monferrato

Best New UNESCO World Heritage Sites: vineyard landscape of Piedmont: Langhe-Roero and Monferrato | Italia Mia | Scoop.it

The amazing man-made structures and natural landscapes that comprise the list of UNESCO World Heritage Sites are awe-inspiring, and now there are more of them than ever. This year, the World Heritage Committee added 26 inscriptions to the list, bringing more sites of cultural, natural, and historical importance under the protection of the United Nations. One of these is located in Italy

Located in northern Italy near the French border, the vineyard landscape of Piedmont not only produces world-class wines, but is also the seat of important Italian history. In addition to five distinct wine growing regions, the Castle of Cavour, dating back to the 13th century, has also been included under the UNESCO listing. The development of important winegrowing processes and the presence of vine pollen from the fifth century B.C. have made this part of Italian wine country particularly significant. Monferrato was a key holding of the Holy Roman Empire during the 16th century before it came under the control of the Duchy of Savoy in the early 18th century. In addition to its internationally renowned wines, the Langhe region is also known for its white truffles.

Plan Your Trip: Visit Fodor's Italy Guide

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