How to visit Bergamo in one day from Milan

Bergamo in one day - Bergamo Alta view

Bergamo is a perfect one day trip from MIlan. Spending one day in Bergamo will allow you to discover its lovely city center and lots of art and culture, on top of its delicious food specialties.  Here is a  one day trip itinerary from Milan to Bergamo, including a Bergamo Alta  walking map.

Why a day trip to Bergamo, Italy? Well, you have spent some days in Milan, enjoyed the bustling life, the glamorous atmosphere, fashion, design, and all the Milanese typical excitement. If you are now looking for something completely different, closer to the “Italian” cliché of history, art, nature and traditional food, then spending one day in  Bergamo, Italy is the best option for you.

Bergamo is a delightful small town, perched on a steep hill side and surrounded by impressive walls. Actually, there are two Bergamo: Bergamo alta (“upper Bergamo”), the historical center, and Bergamo bassa (“lower Bergamo”), built in  more recent times. In this Bergamo in one day post I will focus on Bergamo alta, but if you have time Bergamo bassa is worth a visit as well. If you plan to spend one full day in Bergamo you will have enough time to visit both.

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How to go from Milan to Bellagio – a self guided tour

From Milan to Bellagio - Bellagio pier

How to go from Milan to Como lake main destinations: Como and Bellagio. A complete set of options and travel tips from MIlan to Bellagio and a travel map.

Como lake (actually we should call it Lario lake) is one of North Italy  top destinations, and lovely Bellagio is its pearl. Despite being relatively close to Milan, getting there as independent travelers could be tricky. So here is a quick guideto go from Milan to Bellagio, for a day trip or for a longer period.

Just in case you feel happily on holiday and not interested in handling Italian public transports: click here for a nice day tour from Milan!

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Best 20 things to do in Umbria: discover Italy most underrated region

Best things to do in Umbria

A insider’s guide about the 20 best things to do in Umbria, one of Italy most fascinating regions of Italy, still off the mainstream touristic itineraries

It’s hard to select just 20 best things to do in Umbria, Italy. In my view, Umbria is one of Italy best kept secrets. It displays fascinating towns and villages, tons of culture, beautiful sceneries, fantastic food, cultural events and much more. And, despite that, it’s still ignored by mainstream tourism. Therefore, you won’t find the tourists crowds that will give you a hard time in Florence or San Gimignano. On the contrary, you will enjoy an atmosphere of bygone times, among the medieval paths, the palaces, the castles and the fortresses of charming villages.

This post is aimed at disclosing the best things to see and do in Umbria. I’m sure that after reading it you will want to squeeze Umbria into your Italy trip plan!

So here we go with the top 20 things to see and do in Umbria, Italy.

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One day in Burano – discover Venice lagoon islands

One day in Burano

One day in Burano: self guided day trip from Venice to discover Burano amazing colored houses,lovely Venice lagoon islands, secluded wineyards and delicious fish restaurants.

Tired of crowded Venice? Hungry to discover a completely different environment, where the scenery seems frozen in time? Then what you need is to spend one day in Burano and to enjoy the calm and beauty of Venice lagoon.

Actually most travellers visit 3 island at the same time, either self guided or with an organized tours. Murano, Burano, Torcello, in this order. My suggestion would be to go directly to Burano, so to skip the masses and to enjoy the island all for yourself.

You can then proceed to Torcello, before or after lunch, as you wish. If your pockets are deep enough, a lunch at the worldwide known Locanda Cipriani is a great experience, but an aperitivo could be good enough.

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Day trip to Cinque Terre

A short video to share what to do and see in a day trip to Cinque Terre. Explore the Monterosso – Vernazza trail, the scenic Sentiero Azzurro.

The easy walk from Monterosso to Vernazza is arguably the  most scenic and famous path in the Cinque Terre. You will walk among the renowned Cinque Terre vineyards (ever heard of Vermentino and Sciacchetrà?) and enjoy breathtaking views of the steep cliffs, blue sea and beautiful Monterosso and Vernazza sights.

Here is a quick video to anticipate what you will see when you get there.

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What to do in Italy at Christmas time

Centuries old Italian Christmas traditions, delightful Italian Christmas markets, delicious Italian Christmas cakes: here is the list of the five (plus one!) best things to do in Italy at Christmas time.

Discover Italian Nativity scenes

Delightfullyitaly.com_San Gregorio Armeno_131

Preparing a Nativity scene (“Presepe” in Italian) is a widespread Italian Christmas tradition, especially in Southern Italy. Every church will display a nativity scene, and some are real masterpieces, with moving elements and detailed scenes displaying Italian rural life in the XVIII and XIX centuries. Unsurprisingly, baby Jesus is only displayed after December 25th, while you will have to wait until the Epiphany to see the three wise men!

The largest and most famous nativity scenes can be found in St Peters square and on the Spanish steps, but exploring Rome or Naples churches to find the Nativity scenes you like the most can be a really funny way to spend an afternoon, especially on Christmas day when museums and other attractions are closed. If you travel with your children, they will surely enjoy! Continue reading “What to do in Italy at Christmas time”

How to visit the Cinque Terre in one day

 Key info and tips to visit the Cinque Terre in one day from Florence or from Pisa. Discover and enjoy the most of the Cinque Terre if you only have one day: charming Monterosso, Vernazza and Manarola.

Ideally, you would like to dedicate at least a couple of days to explore beautiful Cinque Terre, plus maybe two or three days more to visit Portovenere and the Golfo dei Poeti, Santa Margherita and Portofino, and beautiful Abbazia di San Fruttuoso. Unfortunately, not so many travellers have more than one day to visit Cinque Terre, and many want anyways to get a glimpse of the Cnque Terre while staying in Florence or in Pisa.

So this post if aimed at the rushy travellers, who want to see in just one day Cinque Terre key highlights: Monterosso, Vernazza and Riomaggiore. It is intended to give you the hints to visit Cinque terre on youself, which is not that difficult.. Alternatively, you can participate to an organized tour, which will probably alow you to see more. In case you are interested, click here for a very good Cinque Terre day tour.

The cinque Terre are five hamlets built on steep hills overlooking the Mediterranean sea., they are accessible from Florence via Pisa. Cars are not allowed, so only way to visit is by sea or by train or, of course, by walking the many trails. This is the cinque terre map, where you can see where the five hamlets are actually located and the main trails.

The cheapest way to organize the trip is to use train. You have many trains leaving from Florence and getting to Moterosso in as less as 2:10 hours, with a change in La Spezia to catch the Cinque Terre Express, the shuttle that connects the five hamlets.

Returning to Florecne will take the same amount of time, so check Trenitalia time table to select and to reserve the train best suited for you.

cinque-terre-map_credit to James Martin
Credits to wanderingitaly.com

The most popular (and, unfortunately, crowded) trail is the so called “Sentiero Azzurro” (blue trail), which is the closer to the coast, and the only one that requires an entry ticket (7€). You can’t do it all in one day, so my suggestion would be to limit your walk to the Monterosso – Vernazza segment (roughly one hour), so that you can visit the first two hamlets and use the frequent local train to visit Riomaggiore and Manarola, if you still have time, or continue walking from Vernazza to Corniglia (another hour).

Unfortunately, the famous Via dell’Amore (a beatiful trail linking Riomaggiore to Manarola) is presently closed due to a land slide.

So here we go with your tour.

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How to travel from Florence to Pisa by train in a day

Easy day trip planning to go from Florence to Pisa by train. How to buy train tickets, get to the cathedral and climb on top of the leaning tower

Florence to Pisa trains are fast and convenient. This makes visiting Pisa an easy day trip from Florence, or a stop while going to or coming back from Cinque Terre (it’s the same train line). This is what the itinerary looks like: Continue reading “How to travel from Florence to Pisa by train in a day”

The ten best restaurants in Milan, plus one

Great pasta, risotto and other local delicacies in the ten best restaurants in Milan. Delicious Italian food in lovely locations at reasonable price.

Forget Pizza ans spaghetti Bolognaise: here we are talking about some of the best food you can taste in Italy, in posh locations and with a great service! This is my very personal selection of the restaurants in Milan with the best quality/price ratio, those where I usually have dinner with my friends and family.

I will not present the true Milan top dining places, such as Savini, Cracco, Joia, Aimo and Nadia, Armani Nobu and the similar (much too expensive for most travellers), but rather 10 excellent Milan restaurants when you can enjoy a a fantastic meal in a great location, spending around 50-60 € per person (the wine you will choose could be a major driver of your bill…).

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Amazing Amalfi coast: best itinerary to discover Amalfi, Positano, Ravello

Amalfi coast Italy_view from Villa Ruffolo Terrace

The Amalfi coast is an amazing destination. Here is how to discover Amalfi, Ravello, Positano and beautiful minor sites, including logistics and travel tips

Imagine ancient white hamlets perched on high cliffs, overlooking the deep blue Tyrrhenian sea. Add cytrus fields, steep light grey mountains, medieval churches, hidden fjords and beaches. Complete with amazing sea food and a “dolce vita” feeling stronger than anywhere else in Italy. That, and much more, is the Amalfi coast, Italy: you can’t really say you know Italy without visiting this delightful destination.

While you can have a glimpse of it in a day trip from Naples or from Sorrento, the Amalfi coast deserves at least two or three days, if not an entire week.

Amalfi coast Italy_villa Cimbrone

So here is my personal Italy Amalfi coast Italy itinerary. It will let you explore all the area, including off the beaten path jewels such as the mills valley and the astonishing “path of the gods” trail . My recommendation is to complete this tour by one or two days in Capri, which could be easily reached by hydrofoil from Positano. In my view, Sorrento can be skipped, but I leave this to you.

A last tip: like most central Italy destinations, best time to visit the Amalfi coast Italy is from May to early July, and, even better, from mid September to October’s end. Weather is perfect and the area is not too crowded (better to avoid week ends if possible). Absolutely avoid July and August, when the heat and the crowds would spoil most of the enchantment.

 Amalfi coast Italy five days tour: click on the image to get to the interactive Amalfi coast map

Amalfi coast italy - Map

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Off the beaten path Italy itinerary – in two or three weeks

A two weeks Italy  itinerary off the beaten path for the travelers who already enjoyed Italy essentials, and look for more. Discover Milan, Emilia Romagna, Umbria, Apulia and Sicily.

Civita Bagnoreggio_the dying city_115
Civita Bagnoregio

What? Visiting Italy without seeing Rome? Not even Florence or Cinque Terre? Yes, that’s what I mean, and I didn’t get crazy!

Here are five good reasons why you may wish to skip Italy main touristic highlights and to explore less famous (but for that reason even more fascinating!) destinations:

  • You already saw them in your previous trips (sounds logical, indeed)
  • You’re tired of seeing more tourists than Italians (yes, that’s what can happen in Rome, Venice and Florence in high season!)
  • You are looking for the real Italian atmosphere
  • You believe that there’s much more to see than just St Peter, St Marc and Piazza della Signoria (and you’re right!)
  • You hate doing what everybody else does

So for you maverick travelers, here is my itinerary, to be enjoyed in two weeks or more. Of course, you can cherry pick any of these destinations and add it to a “classical” Italian tour: you won’t regret it!

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Florence in a day: all Florence must sees in an easy walking itinerary

Florence in a Day_Pontevecchio

How to discover Florence in a day by foot, including some hidden jewels, off the beaten path. Includes an interactive Google map.

Let me tell you before hand: visiting Florence in a day is possible, but this wonderful town would deserve more than one day of your Italian itinerary. But if you have to rush, here is a walking itinerary to have a glimpse of Florence in just a day.

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Romantic Rome: look for romance in Villa d’Este, Tivoli

One of the most romantic things you can do while in Rome is to visit Villa d’Este, in Tivoli. It will be a fantastic escape from chaotic Rome, and you will love its renaissance gardens and fountains. Villa D’Este will definitely be one of your Romantic Rome highligts.

Villa D’Este and its amazing fountains are arguably one of the most romantic day trips from Rome. Strolling in its fresh alleys, admiring the amazing fountains and the beautiful views over the valley, loosing yourself in the lost in time atmosphere will be one of the most enchanting memories of your Italian trip.

While you are there, you could also visit Villa Gregoriana. It’s a nice walk in a deep gorge, with waterfalls everywhere and a tiny round Roman temple overlooking it. Actually you can see this sight on many 18th and 19th paintings, since this has been an inspirational view to legions of famous painters.

Alternatively, you could visit Emperor’s Adrian villa amazing ruins. A Unesco heritage site, and a top romantic visit. Unmissable if you are in Tivoli!

 In case you don’t want to bother organizing your day trip to Tivoli on your own, here is a nice tour that combine Villa d’Este and Villa Adiana

Villa d’Este is a really romantic place during daytime, and it becomes absolutely magic after sunset!

Don’t miss the opportunity of a night visit. Villa d’Este opens to the public at night, from July 4 to September 13, only on riday and Saturday nights, from 8:30 PM to 00:30 AM (this is for 2017, better to check for 2018).

Admission is limited to 2.000 persons, so better to reserve at the following number: 199 766166.

If you are lucky enough to attend the night visit, what about spending the night there? Click here to find the best places to stay in Tivoli


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Delightfullyitaly.com is the insider’s Italy travel guide for independent travelers. Here you will find city guides, travel itineraries, Italian experiences and much more.

If you wish to visit Italy for the first time, or if you already discovered Venice, Rome, Florence, the Amalfi coast, but still want more, delightfullyitaly.com is here to disclose to you Italian Must See as well as Italian hidden treasures.

And if you like what you read, why not follow delightfullyitaly.com and get free updates?

 

Tremiti islands, pearls in the Adriatic sea

How to plan a trip to the Tremiti islands, one of the best kept secrets of the Adriatic sea, and how to get the most out of your stay.

In front of the Gargano peninsula, in the Northern part of Puglia, lies a miniature paradise surrounded by the blue sea: the Tremiti islands.

Tremiti Map

Tremiti are a delightful archipelago of three islands (San Nicola, San Domino and Capraia), 36km offshore of the Gargano peninsula, in the Northern part of Apulia.

Its picturesque sight of raggedy cliffs, sandy coves and thick pine woods, surrounded by the glittering dark-blue fascinates the happy few travelers happy enough  to spend there a few days . Tremiti islands are a maritime reserve, and their surprisingly clear deep blue water make them a real wonder of nature for snorkeling and. diving enthusiasts.

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San Galgano and the sword in the rock

Italy owns its peculiar Sword in the Rock: you can find it close to the awesome San Galgano abbey ruins. Galgano Guidotti, a knight and later a saint, stabbed it in the rock nearly 800 years ago as a cross pilgrims going to Rome could worhip (read here Galgano Guidotti full story).

San Galgano abbey and the sword in the rock in the nearby Rotonda di Montesiepi are an unmissable destination when exploring southern Tuscany.

sangalgano-spadanellaroccia_01

 

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All you need to do is to use Booking.com by clicking on the banner below to book you next trip. It won’t cost you a Penny and you’ll get the best deals on accommodation available anywhere!



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Delightfullyitaly.com is the insider’s Italy travel guide for independent travelers. Here you will find city guides, travel itineraries, Italian experiences and much more.

Are you planning to visit Italy for the first time? You already discovered Venice, Rome, Florence, the Amalfi coast, but still want more? Either way, delightfullyitaly.com is here to disclose to you Italian Must See as well as Italian hidden treasures.

And if you like what you read, why not follow delightfullyitaly.com and get free updates?

Santa Cecilia in Trastevere

 

Santa Cecilia in Trastevere is a beautiful ancient church, off the mainstream Trastevere restaurants and night life district.  5th-century church in Rome, Italy, devoted to Saint Cecilia, in the Trastevere rione.

The church is devoted to the Roman martyr Cecilia, martyred by the late fifth century. St. Cecilia was a native of Rome, of a good family, and educated in the principles and perfect practice of the Christian religion. In her youth she by vow consecrated her virginity to God, yet was compelled by her parents to marry a nobleman named Valerian. Him she converted to the faith, and soon after gained to the same his brother Tiburtius. The men first suffered martyrdom, being beheaded for the faith. St. Cecilia finished her glorious triumph some days after them.

Santa Cecilia hosts a poignant statue of the saint, which depicts the three axe strokes described in the 5th-century account of her martyrdom.

www.delightfullyitaly_Rome-Walk in Trastevere 27

www.delightfullyitaly_Rome-Walk in Trastevere 28

If you wish to visit Sante Cecilia, have a look at my walking tour in Trastevere post.

Hell in Bologna

The Basilica of San Petronio is the main church of Bologna, and the fifteenth largest church in the world (132 metres long and 66 metres wide).

One of its most fascinating masterpieces is the Chapel of the Magi, hosting the awesome Heaven and Hell fresco by Giovanni di Pietro Falloppi. It depicts Dante’s vision of “Inferno”, with a gigantic figure of Lucifer consuming sinners.