Il Viaggio – The Trip

I just returned from an 12 day trip to Italy. I visited Milan, Trento, Bolzano, Padova, Vincenza, Venice, Lake Garda and several small villages which our bike our took us through. It was an amazing trip, but I learned a lesson. DON’T BOOK YOURSELF SOLID.  I had set up so many things withs dates and times that I forgot to live the Italian lifestyle and not rush.  None the less, it was an amazing trip. But I will remember for the next visit. IMG 1186

Pasta with ragu in a small ristorante in Milano. Off the beaten path, not crowded and a great meal. 

IMG 1187

The The Osteria The Full Moon

This was my first dinner in Milano, and you might like to visit this quiet southern Italian ristorante if you have time. Here is the address.  Via Lazzaro Palazzi 9, 20124 Milan, Italy.  If you have not guessed, I am a big fan of Southern Italian cooking and Sicilian Cooking. IMG 1190IMG 1292

 

Bikes are a way of life in Milano and most of italy.  The bike share cycles area all over. It is not uncommon to see some in a dress and high heels, or a business suit riding down the street. In Desenzano del Garda a young man was riding in the rain with an umbrella held high above his head… Sujch is the life of those who commute on a bicci!

The next post will include the Cenaclo and the Canal District.

IMG 1242

Milano

Milan is about many things. It is a modern city with historical routes and contemporary styles.  Saldi, sales are key to visiting Milan. There are designer outlets, and seasonal sales.   I am going back to Milan in 3 weeks and will do a complete update on he city, the museums, and shopping districts.  These photos are from a 2008 vist to the city.

 

ON SALE IN MILAN

 

Window in Milan center.

 

 

Milan La Galleria

The bull in La Galleria Vittorio Emanuel II, Milano

 

Legend has it that if you put your heel on the testicles of the bull and turn around three times, it will bring good luck.  Did not do much for the bull. It is also said that if a woman touches the genitals it will bring fertility.

 

 

DUOMO MILANO

 

The duomo is one of the biggest tourist attractions in Milan. 

DSC 2401

 

DUOMO MILANO

 

It is worth taking the elevators to the top to get a view of the city and admire the construction of the Duomo.

 Milano Tram

 

I enjoyed taking the tram in Milano. It is a slower and more enjoyable way to see this city. Of course avoid morning and afternoon rush hours. 

 

Here is a link to a youtube video of the street cars of Milano

 

NewImage

 

We are not in Venice. These are the Canals of Milano. Photo from Walks of Italy. The Navigli. 

 

NewImage

The canals were built to transport goods to the city from nearby lakes. It is no longer used for transport, but is a tourist destination.  This has ushered in an arts district with restaurants and bars and is worth the visit.

Here is a link to Walks of Italy for tour information. https://www.walksofitaly.com/blog/milan/canal-in-milan

 

I am returning to Milano in September for three days. Will be going to the Navigli district ( canal district) the Duomo, and possibly return to view the last supper again. Here is a link to the web site to purchase tickets to visit the Last Upper. It is advisable to book as early as possible. If you can not get through this site, check Viator, Walks of Italy or other resellers.   I advise three months in advance. Link below to official site. 

https://cenacolovinciano.vivaticket.it/?qubsq=716f61bb-85f0-4c5f-8a0b-fe0054980b10&qubsp=42a99ae9-969c-4fd0-894f-0b918799a95b&qubsts=1535228478&qubsc=bestunion&qubse=vivaticketserver&qubsrt=Safetynet&qubsh=fd2fc046714c5951348e9fb15cde1595

 

NewImage

 

 

 

CIMG4737

 

Some photos of the area near La Scala Opera HouseCIMG4754

CIMG4746

 

DSC 2384

Where was I?

Since the mid 1980s we have been traveling to Italy. The question become where was I. With GPS enabled photos, my aging memory is being helped by referring to the maps of places shows in Apple Photos.

Then map of Sicily is not complete as many photos were not geo tagged. But is does help bring back any memories. I wish I was able to record our trips from my GPS, but at the time this was not available. My wife and I have been traveling for the last month but we will e home soon and I can get back to the blog with a segment on the town we liked best in Italy.

Ciao,a presto.

Next trip to Italy: Cycling Bolzano to Venice

In late September I will be leaving to travel to Milano for 2 nights and then joining a bike tour that begins in Trento. A short train ride from Trento brings us to the starting point in Bolzano with views to the Dolomites and a bike path that follows the Adige River back to Trento. This is a protected path with great river views and mostly flat.

The next day the tour heads to Riva del Garda at the top of Italy’s amazing Lago di Garda. At that point we take the boat to Desenzano del Garda a town where Angela and I spent ten wonderful days exploring last year.

The next leg is a ride into Verona home of the Arena de Verona where the operas are performed each year. On to Vincenza traveling through the wine regions. Padova come next and then on to Mestre, which is just outside of Venezia. Since bikes and cars are not allowed in the city of Venice, we will use public transportation to visit the city.

I am really looking forward to this bike tour, plus I have two days to explore Milano.

The tram in Milano

The Rialto, VenziaLago di Garda

Desenzano del Garda

The Arena di Verona, Verona

Non vedo l’ora. I can not wait for this trip to begin. Will try to post each day when it begins.

Walking around Roma

Rome is a city best seen on foot. We enjoyed 18 days wandering around the city from our Airbnb on the edge of Campo Dei Fiore (Field of Flowers). Each day was a magical show of life as we navigated from neighborhood to neighborhood .

Here is a link to a quick video featuring Testaccio, Campo Dei Fiore, Castel Sant Angelo, and other points. Will be going through others and posting from my iPad while on vacation back in Connecticut, where you can get real pizza.

https://youtu.be/HFU1VQLcFVs

ISCHIA, a small Island Off the Coast of Napoli, a must visit location

CASTELO ARAGONESE

CASTELLO ARAGONESE

My wife Angela suggested a visit to the island of Ischia, which is a short ferry ride from Napoli. At first I did not know what to think about this. Having never heard of it I began to do some research. The online photos looked good and we have always liked islands.  Getting there was an adventure for us as we have to drive from Napoli to the suburb of Pozzuli. We were bring our rental car as this is a good size Island.  There were no problems and a pleasant voyage with a quick stop at the island of Procida. This is also a place Iw Ould like to visit when we return to Napoli.  Spend time at the beaches and enjoy the warm waters. Find a spa with hot springs feeding it. Walk or take the bus. This island is doable. Scenes from the movie, “the Talented Mr. Ripley” were filmed in Ischia. Also “While We Were Here” with Kate Bosworth.  See all the films that used ischia as a location https://www.ischiareview.com/ischia-in-the-movies.html

PROCIDA

 

THE ISLAND OF PROCIDA

ISCHIA ISLAND

ISCHIA MAP IN CERAMIC TILE 

Once on the Island we started to explore.  At  on time we were on a small dirt road when it got narrower and narrower. Eventually had to back up and work our way into town, 

MINERAL POOL

HOT SPRING MINERAL POOL

Ischia is know for its hot spring fed mineral  pools.  The springs feed the pools and they are drained out each night and left to fill overnight. At least in the case of our hotel.

HOT SPRINGS FEED POOL

HOT SPRINGS FEEDING THE POOL

 

SAPORI MOZZARELLA BUFALA

The Old Butcher Shop Selling Everyting

CIMG0573

Ristorante Lo Scoglio, Sant’ Angelo d’Ischia 

We headed out to dinner and found Lo Scoglio. It is located in Sant’Angelo and proved to be an excellent choice.  The name translated to THE ROCK.

NewImage

 

Photo from the restaurant  web site.

CIMG0569  Version 2CIMG0570

 

CIMG0578

View from the dining room 

CIMG0577

My wife’s choice,  fruit dal mare.   

 

 

CIMG0567

Lo Scolgio in the daylight.

CIMG0650CIMG0667

Il centro

CIMG0670

 

Peperoni

 

CIMG0499

 

CIMG0497

The teenagers had no problem diving off the rocks. 

CIMG0478

View from our hotel. 

 Here is the link to the Wikipedia description of Ischia. It is definitely a destination not to miss  in Italy   https://wikitravel.org/en/Ischia

CELL PHONE BARGAINS IN ITALY

In September I will be returning to Italy and taking a bike tour from Bolzano through Lake Garda and on to Venice.  I began thinking about my cell phone. I had used all the credits and in the past had to renew through recharge my sim. de but alas they are no longer in business.  So lets look at your options.   TIM has a very simple plan called TIM FOR VISITORS. Google the link and click on the English Flag to change language. TIM FOR VISITORSit  is not a bad deal. For 30 Euro you get 4 GIG data, and 100 min of talk.  You can purchase the voucher in the US an bring it to any TIM store. I used the one at Fiumicino, Leonardo da Vinci,  Rome;s main airport.  It took less than 15 minutes to get me up and running and have the attendant set up my phone. You can purchase the voucher using your US credit card. TIM FOR VISITORS WHAT YOU GET

BUY TIM FOR VISITORS

 

OK, now it  is time to take about recharging your card.  You can go through your minutes quickly and until recently you could not recharge your sim with an foreign credit card.    First go to https://www.tim.it

You will get the Italian language screen, best thing is to use Google Chrome or install the translate extension in Safari.  Right click and you will get the English  language translation. Keep in mind TEXT MESSAGES ARE NOT FREE. You can use iMessage or other apps that will allow you to text for free on the data. Also consider installing Skype for calls back to the US. I have had excellent results with Skype. 

 

TIM IT ITALIAN

ITALIAN, Ricaica means recharge.

TIM IT ENGLISH

English translation. Click recharge after you use pull down to select amount.

TIM RECHARGE SELECT AMMOUNT

MAKE SURE YOU CHECK THE BOX MARKED FOREIGN CREDIT CARD

SEND TEST MESSAGE TO CONFIRM

 

At the bottom, you can select the receive email notification. It will come to your email account of choice. There os also a box to insert a TEXT which will be sent to your cell to confirm all is working. 

 

Here is my email confirmation.

 

 

Gentile Cliente,
Ti confermiamo la presa in carico dell’ordine nº xxxxxxxxx del 08/04/2018 23:07:16

 

DETTAGLI ORDINE

User:
Numero: xxxxxxxxx Data e ora: 08/04/2018 23:07:16
Metodo di pagamento utilizzato: CDC
Costo a pagare: 10.00 Euro

 

Ricarica:

Importo ricarica: 10.00 Euro
Numero ricaricato: 339xxxxxxx

N.B. La ricarica sara’ immediatamente resa disponibile come credito telefonico e comunque non oltre le 48 ore dal momento della richiesta.

Ti ricordiamo che sul sito tim.it puoi attivare altre offerte o servizi, acquistare prodotti e Ricaricare. Inoltre, accedendo alla sezione MyTIM Mobile del sito potrai:

verificare il tuo credito residuo
verificare lo stato delle offerte attive sulla tua linea
modificare il tuo profilo tariffario
consultare lo stato dei tuoi acquisti online

There are other options, Vodafone  has a similar plan.  Google Vodafone Holiday for information.VODAFONE HOLIDAUY

 

Keep in mind none of the plans have everything you may need. You need an unlocked cell phone with GSM capabilities.    You will always need your passport when purchasing from a Tim or Vodafone store. 

 

You can fly to Italy for $400

I have paid a lot to travel to Italy and I have also gotten some reasonable fares.  Recently I subscribed to a site called Scott’s Cheap Flights.  There is a free version and a paid version.  I got an email last week and found a Euro sale. I looked at Milan for $400 and thought this was a bargain.   NewImage

 

I then went to Google Flights, and MATRIX AIRFARE SEARCH

 

NewImage

NewImage

 

The Air Italy popped up with a $423 Fare from Miami Non Stop to Milan.    Amazing.  The fare actually was $407 with out bags. I ended up booking a flight for $488 with bags and online check in. I was planning a bike tour and needed to bring slightly more than my cary on would permit.   My total price was Total amount passenger $488.06.    To put things in perspective, in 2004 I flew to Naples for $875.  .In 2006 I paid $710 for the same flight  On 2011 the flight cost $762. 
Air Italy is a division of Meridiana. This is the same company that operated Eurofly USA several years ago.  

 

I highly recommend  Scott’s Cheap Flights and feel the $32 per year to get al their updates is well worth it.   My blog is not commercial and I get no remuneration from them.

Here is their web site https://scottscheapflights.com

 

Here is a sample fare to Rome from Miami, non stop also.  

IMG 2117

Blog at WordPress.com.

Up ↑

%d bloggers like this: