When to go to Italy

It sure is not July or August. In July everyone goes to Italy. Everything is HOT. Unless you can take the heat, wait a bit. August has many shutdowns. Italian shops close for vacation. You may consider a beach vacation, but temperatures will still be sweltering. We spent 10 days in Cefal├╣ several years ago, but our day times were submerged in refreshing water.

The top photo shows Rome hovering near 100 degrees for the week.

Below Cefal├╣ on a hot August day. Evenings were very pleasant.

September through November bring cheaper airfares. We leave for Milan on September 19 and fly nonstop from Miami for the ridiculously low fare of $369 round trip. Carryon is the only way to fly when you will be schlepping your bags. Keep it simple and light.

Last year I arrived in Milan on September 29th and returned on October 8th. No crowds and great weather.

Back in 2014 we went with family to Sicily and arrived in late April. Some days were great and others cool and some rain. It never stopped our enjoyment of the uncrowded streets in Palermo and Siracusa. Later we spend 10 days in Paris but rain and cold temperatures sent us to the shops to buy some extra clothing.

Mt Etna snow covered from the previous day. April 2014 Taken from Taormina

Save money and time. When possible travel the shoulder and off season times. Use Google Flights to see how much you can save on flights. Buon viaggio.

MAPS FOR TRAVELERS

Lonely Planet who publishes a number of very good travel books has made the map sections available on line. These are a free download.

A partial view of the Lonely Planet map of Roma.

You can save these to your tablet or smart phone, or do a screen shot like the one above to help you in your travels. There are hundreds of maps.

Here is the link

http://media.lonelyplanet.com/ebookmaps/

Here is a link to the Lonely Planet guide books.

https://shop.lonelyplanet.com/?gclsrc=aw.ds&&gclid=CjwKCAjwx_boBRA9EiwA4kIELlU24QnYPhodYK4oJ7LLXikOfSajupEYmmR4cksBK8fJKqs1QXUl7BoCcZAQAvD_BwE

Food, Cibo, it makes Italy special.

it Italy it is all about food. The calamari above brings back fond memories. In 2017 we spend 18 days in Rome and ate at ristoranti about 14 times. Our days were highlighted by going to the various markets.

We had an apartment in the Campo di Fiore which is not too far from Piazza Navona. This was a great area with shops, markets, restaurants everywhere.

Fresh produce was all over. You can see this is not Stop and Shop , or Kroger. This is fresh as fresh can be. We loved the market in Campo dei Fiore (Field of Flowers) and the indoor Testaccio Market. The Campo dei Fiore is a bit commercialized, but still a great place if you live in the neighborhood. The new Testaccio Market has many vendors of fresh produce and meats as well as clothing and assorted other items. Sandwiches made to order are amazing and watching the show is well worth the time.

Roscioli is a well known bakery , fornaio , with all kinds of baked goods and an aroma to encourage buying.

Volpetti is a pasticciera with outdoor seating so you can watch the Roman world go by.

The sheet pizza is priced by the pound in this little pizzeria neat the Campo dei Fiore. It is located very close to the “tiny” church Santa Barbara dei Librai which is a must see if you are in the area.

Pizza is everywhere and Roman pizza is buona. Wood fired pizza is typically ready in 3-4 minutes. No twenty minute wait.

A boar “cinghiale”, La trippa tripe below. I have tasted the sauce made with boars meet and it is great. I am not a fan of tripe, but my wife loves is.

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