S: ITALIA 2010
BC: Ciao Italia August 2010
1: ITALIA | "Italy is a dream that keeps returning for the rest of your life." -- Anna Akhmatova | Roma Cinque Terra Vernazza Monterosso al Mare Riomaggiore Manarola Corniglia Pisa Volterra Tuscany & Chianti Greve Civita di Bagnoregio Montepulciano Firenze L'Isola D'Ischia Pompeii Costiera Amalfitana | August 7th - 22nd 2010
2: Day 1 | seeing the city from above | Our holiday to Italy began on August 7th with our 5pm flight on American Airlines. After many kisses and hugs to our girls we boarded our first class flight to Rome. We were served champagne, snacks, hot towels, sleep masks & socks & had a plethora of movies to choose from. Our seats even turned into "beds" so we could get some sleep. | First Class
3: Arriving in Roma! day 2 | "Methinks I will not die quite happy with out having seen something of that Rome of which I have read so much." -- Sir Walter Scott
4: The "Eternal City" of Roma
5: Hotel Due Torre Bernini fountains Pizza Gelato!! Fragole wine | Buongiorno Italia! | Borghese Gallery - "No Camera!" but we saw amazing sculptures by Bernini: David & Apollo Chasing Daphne | ! A walk around the narrow streets of Rome, the Spanish Steps and a visit to the Borghese Gallery.were the plans for DAY TWO.
6: "The Creator made Italy from designs from Michaelangelo" - Mark Twain | School of Athens
7: Vatican City | Saint Peter's Basilica | Sistine Chapel | Michelangelo's Pieta | Vatican Museum | Day Three | St. Peter's Square | Raphael Rooms
8: "What is the fatal charm of Italy? What do we find there that can be found nowhere else? I believe it is a certain permission to be human, which other places, other countries, lost long ago." Erica Jong
9: What a great day we had soaking in all of the riches that Rome has to offer! A true walk through history in a living breathing city.
10: Bernini's Ecstasy of Saint Teresa | The Santa Maria dell Vittoria Church is the home of one of our favorite art pieces in the world - Bernini's controversial baroque masterpieces - The Ecstasy of Saint Teresa.
11: Piazza Navona is a busy, touristy square full of the life of Rome. It is a perfect place to people watch, crowded with street merchants & performance artist. At the center of it all is Bernini's Four Rivers Fountain; one of our favorite fountains in Rome. | Night life in Roma
12: Trevi Fountain | 12 years ago we tossed our coins in Trevi Fountian and made a wish to return to Rome someday. We finally got our wish and tonight we tossed our coins in again and made the same wish: To someday return to this amazing city.
13: The Trevi Fountain shows how Rome took full advantage of the abundance of water brought into the city by its great aqueducts. The statue surfs through this kingdom-with water gushing from 24 spouts and tumbling over 30 different kinds of plants-while Triton blows his conch shell. Romantics toss a coin over their shoulder, thinking it will give them a wish and assure their return to Rome.
14: Day Four
15: This day was filled with a long bus ride to the Catacombs along the Appian Way, the National Museum filled with ancient Roman Art, a walk past the Colosseum, seeing beautiful public drinking fountains and finally a night time stroll down a street still lit with old gas lamps.
16: Day Five | "Five Earths" | Five Earths | hello up there!
17: Vernazza | The | We left the city of Roma for the small towns of The Cinque Terra, a collection of five villages hugging the coastline of the Italian Riviera. 12.08.2010
18: views walking over small rocky path ways through hillside vineyards as we descended into the village of Monterossa. | Our hike began in Vernazza up, up , up into the mountain where we had amazing
19: "Thou Paradise of exiles, Italy!" Percy Bysshe Shelley
20: Scenic views on the Cinque Terra Trail
22: Monterossa al Mare
24: " You may have the universe if I may have Italy." Giuseppe Verdi
25: We started the day with a walk through the sleepy streets of Vernazza watching the town awake. The smells of fresh focaccia wafting through the streets & merchants unloading truck loads of olive oil & produce are memories we will always treasure. | Day Six
27: From Vernazza we took the train to Riomaggiore, described as a fascinating tangle of pastel homes leaning on each other like drunken sailors. We then hiked north to Manarola on the famed Via dell'Amore, or "Pathway of Love." It is the current craze in Italy to lock a padlock along this walkway with your sweetheart.
29: A dip in the Mediterranean Sea
30: After our swim in the sea we continued our hike up the 400 step footpath to the sleepy hilltop village of Corniglia. | Corniglia
31: From Corniglia we hiked back to Vernazza. We could see the town for most of the hike back, but could never seem to get any closer.
32: We had an amazing dinner on our last night in the Cinque Terra. We didn't want the night to end. The owner, Monica, was wonderful and seated us at a romantic cliff side table. Tom and I spent the evening eating wonderful food, enjoying each other & the art of conversation! | Ristorante Al Castello
35: Day 7 Our driving adventure begins. First stop - the leaning Tower of Cheesa...I mean Pisa.
36: "For us to go to Italy is like a most fascinating act of self-discovery. Strange and wonderful chords awake in us, and vibrate again after many hundreds of years of complete forgetfulness." D.H. Lawrence | The medieval city of
37: Montelpuciano | Twilight obsessed, even in Italy. We tried not to provoke the Volturi while visiting their cities.
38: Our Villa at Vignamaggio
39: A wine estate in the Chianti countryside | "Italy, my Italy! Open my heart and you will see Graved inside of it. Italy." Robert Browning
40: Day Eight Civita di Bagnoregio...a magical traffic-free village perched on a pinnacle and only accessible via footbridge.
43: Wine tasting in the cellars of Contucci Cantina. There we met Adamo, who has been making wine since 1953. We were tasting the most amazing reds when the power went out due to a thunderstorm. Drinking wine in a dark cellar during a thunderstorm in a medieval city...An AMAZING experience!
44: Day Nine Firenze The home of Michaelangelo's David, the River Arno, the Ponte Vecchio, haggling in the street markets, and gelato! | The River Arno | Ponte Vecchio
45: Il Fretelline "little brothers" | Piazza Signoria | "David"
46: Day 10 A climb up to the top of the Duomo offered amazing heights and views of the city.
47: Atop the Duomo in Firenze
49: "A man who has not been in Italy, is always conscious of an inferiority, from his not having seen what it is expected a man should see." Samuel Johnson | Boboli Gardens
50: ISCHIA | Day 11 | "Italy, and the spring and first love all together should suffice to make the gloomiest person happy" -- Bertrand Russell
51: An old monastery in Castello Aragonese | Albergo il Monastero
52: "They catch each other under the chin, with a tender caress of the hand, and they smile with sunny melting tenderness into each other's face." D.H. Lawrence
53: Day 12 - No camera today as we decided to spend some time at the beach. After a long trek to the opposite side of the island, we spent the afternoon lounging under beach umbrellas, reading and soaking up the Italian sun! | Views from the Island of Ischia
54: "Fair Italy! Thou art the garden of the world, the home of all Art yields, and Nature can decree; Even in thy desert, what is like to thee?" Rochdale | Day 13 - a tour of the Amalfi Coast | We took a German/Italian Bus Tour!
55: Memories of the Amalfi Coast: stunning scenery, hill and harbor hugging towns, crazy traffic and a wedding!
57: Mount Vesuvius erupted in A.D. 79 | burying Pompeii under 30 feet of hot volcanic ash. | This city of well-preserved ruins offers a look at what life in Rome was like 2000 years ago.
58: Rome! | back | Days 14 & 15 | Back to Roma with our final accommodations at the Caesar House, an elegant residence with a view of the Roman Forum. We spent the last 2 days of our vacation just enjoying Rome, Italia & each other's company and this amazing experience
59: "It is the city of mirrors, the city of mirages, at once solid and liquid, at once air and stone." Erica Jong
61: The Roman Colliseum
63: A tour through history: The Colliseum, the Roman Forum, and the Pantheon
65: "Even now I miss Italy dearly, I dream about it every night." --Eila Hiltunen | While we may be leaving Italia once again, so shall we return in the future. I can hardly wait. Italy will always be the place where I fall in love with you all over again.