Noto – A Stone Garden in Sicily’s Valley of Baroque

Noto is another Sicilian town revered for spectacular Baroque architecture. I visited on Saturday. The Mediterranean has been stormy and weather was overcast and windy – not great for photography. Everything in the complex has unique symbolism and historical significance, I hoped to hire a local guide. Understanding the history and culture of countries makes…

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Modica Sicily – Baroque Architecture, Earthquakes, and Chocolate

I’ve been relaxing in Pozzallo, content with long walks on the beach and uninspired to post on my travel blog or chase Sicilian attractions. Daylight hours are long (6:30 am – 8:30 pm) and April weather is mild. Like most coastal areas, Pozzallo’s wind can be fierce and unpredictable with temperatures changing quickly. We’ve had…

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Pozzallo Sicily

Pozzallo is a sleepy Sicilian seaside village on the Mediterranean – as “Italian / Sicilian” as you can get! I arrived Monday afternoon after flights from Belgrade to Munich and Munich to Catania followed by a 1.5-hour bus ride from Catania to Pozzallo. Each leg of the trip had unique challenges which I won’t belabor…

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Arrivederci Roma!

These weeks in Rome have passed so quickly! It’s sad that just as I’m settling in and finally beginning to conquer the Italian learning curve, it’s time to move on to Istanbul. I sometimes resist the “moving part” of each leg on a long trip – knowing everything  changes completely overnight and a new orientation…

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Ancient Rome’s Appian Way

Sunday afternoon I visited the Appian Way, “ancient Rome’s most important military and economic artery”. Built in 312 BC, the road is one of the “oldest roads in existence” and called the “Queen of Roads”! History “The Appian Way was a crucial road for the Roman Empire. It connected Rome to its most distant settlements.…

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Exhibitions Complesso del Vittoriano – Botero, Giovanni Boldini, Rome’s Fire Artist

Museums and exhibition halls in Rome’s Complesso del Vittoriano, the “Altar of the Italian Nation,” are known for hosting great art. The complex was built as a “symbolic monument” to “celebrate Vittorio Emanuele II of Savoy, the first King of a unified Italy”. Two incredible showings are now running: Fernando Botero Giovanni Boldini Colombian Artist Fernando…

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Trinità dei Monti Rome

Santissima Trinità dei Monti Roman Catholic Church and monastery is at the top of the Spanish Steps in Rome. Obelisco Sallustiano stands at the church’s entrance. Trinità dei Monti is a French national church and one of Rome’s main attractions. The church contains magnificent Renaissance Art and has interesting history. In 1502, to celebrate France’s invasion of…

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Campo Marzio Rome

Yesterday I spent time walking the upper areas of Campo Marzio, the Roman district that “boasts ruins with some of the most famous monuments in the world”. The district was dedicated to Mars, the Roman God of War. Campo Marzio covers a large area, including Piazza Navona, Piazza di Spagna, and Trinita dei Monti. During…

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Rome’s Piazza del Popolo, Basilica Santa Maria del Popolo, and Museo Leonardo da Vinci 

Piazza del Popolo Piazza del Popolo (People’s Square), along the northern edge of “tourist Rome”, is near the northern gate of the Aurelian Wall and part of Rome’s tridente neighborhood. The church of Santa Maria del Popolo and several parks surround the square. The hot weather in Rome zaps your energy. I’ve been leaving my…

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Villa Borghese Rome

Yesterday, I walked throughout Villa Borghese, one of Rome’s largest parks with gardens, museums, galleries, and more. The sprawling urban park is north of central Rome in the upscale Spagna district near the Aurelian Wall. Other notable attractions in the area include Piazza del Popolo, Spanish Steps, and Piazza di Spagna. I took the subway to…

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Magnifico Giro in Bicicletta a Roma

Thursday, I enjoyed an all-day bicycle tour of many of Rome’s famous historical monuments! It was a small group of three led by our Italian guide, Emanuele. The other two members of the group – Conor and Cara – were Americans from New York City traveling through Italy for several weeks. On their way to…

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