FLORENCE, YOU ARE MY FAVORITE!
There is a city which makes me feel a certain way with all of its palaces, churches, museums, villas, and gardens that are just magical in their own way. Florence warms my heart for so many reasons in which the hilltop towns of Tuscany are probably the most breathtaking since, for example San Gimignano dates back to the mid 14th century but the people are still living there as if buildings are built recently and you can just feel the atmosphere and of course cherish it for a moment. People who are living in Tuscany seem to live their lives very proudly with a great respect for the history. The overwhelming filing that holds me when walking through this old structures and monuments is the reason why I am so happy to be here. Oh, Tuscany is truly a beautiful region in Italy, and as if that’s not enough, for them making extra virgin olive oil is a lifestyle which I truly admire and the wine sorts are exceptional, Tuscany is well known for their famous Chianti wine produced in the Chianti region. Yes, I enjoyed it very much at lunch and dinner. Nothing should qualified for a bigger enjoyment :). Needless to say, the food looks and tastes absolutely beautiful and delicious. I always try and be positive and open minded when it comes to trying new things especially if it’s about food and trying new flavours. These particular area in Italy demonstrates healthy and sustainable forward lifestyle in which I felt nothing but a refreshing pleasure.
I was so excited just to enjoy some time in Florence and to pass through this open air museum, because that’s what it is.. with all its towers, bridges, squares, fountains, statues. All I needed is to wander around and maybe grab some gelato. Probably the best gelato in Florence is Vivoli gelateria and perhaps just to mention best tip when choosing gelaterias is to pay attention to the pistachio flavour. It should look dirty olivey green which means it’s probably homemade and if gelato looks pretty green, well pretty in this case means going to the next gelateria. When you try the real thing, you’ll know it was worth it :).
Romantic weekend in Castelo di Mammoli
A peaceful town of opera and olive oil with its romantic churches and hidden gardens is the place we spend couple of days and didn’t regret one bit. Lucca is one of the hilltop towns of Tuscany mentioned above which took my breath away on first sight, mainly because of the place where my bf and I stayed and truly feel in love with. This five star hotel in the top of the Tuscan hill was in fact Church of Mammoli (monastery) now transformed into a beautiful little heaven with amazing suits and rooms with the pool access up in a hill with a gorgeous landscape located on the top, the best spot to feel the breeze and all those herbs growing around the hills surrounded by olives trees. I honestly felt such a warm atmosphere.
SAVOCA- A QUIET HILL VILLAGE
This beautiful village located high above the sea with its authentic atmosphere yet to be discovered gives an impression that life goes on far from civilization, but that’s far from reality because Savoca has plenty to offer and people love to visit for a day or two and feel the way locals spend their days. Since I am a fan of Godfather trilogy, discovering this place was really interesting. This is the place of the famous Bar Vitelli and the wedding church where Michael was married in. The village is so small and it’s so Italian. It warms my heart to be here and imagine the scenes as if they are shooting them right now. I enjoyed every moment I spent here. During the first day the idea was to take a little walk around the village and to relax at the Bar Vitelli which obviously meant to have some granita, again 🙂 (little glass that I’m holding) with one of my favourite flavours- lemon, Granita di Limone. In my opinion this particular place had really great granita flavours and the texture was incredible. At the moment I set down and enjoy my “breakfast”, there wasn’t any tourists or even locals and it was so peaceful and quiet-true paradise. It’s funny, right? but in the summer granita and gelato are breakfast foods, that how Sicilians see it. For me it’s more of a refreshing snack during a hot Sicilian day.
San Vito Lo Capo
This beautiful small town in Trapani province was the first place that I saw after short visit to the City of Palermo. Oh my god! What a place.. You can try to close your eyes and imagine beautiful backdrop of mountains, attractive caves, long white sandy beaches and clear warm sea with a crystal blue colour. You could hear some guys playing nice relaxing music on the beach right next to ocean and palm tries. This place is great for a long weekend and recharging batteries. Lots of restaurants and bars there, depending on the time of the year can be crowded. In august when I visited San Vito Lo Capo I manage to find a great spot without any struggle and enjoy this Italian Caribbean. I’m so glad to have memories from this spectacular place.
Borgo San Rocco
I can’t find the words to express that beautiful filling when I first saw this amazing place. I stayed at the Resort Borgo San Rocco in the Borgo San Rocco for a couple of days and it was unforgettable experience. Upon arrival I felt like this is a dream.. Everything about this place was amazing, dreamy location with a breath taking view and sincere welcome gave mi a hint that I’m gonna fall in love with this place, and I did. Room was very comfortable, spacious, and spotless. We had stunning view of “The Godfather” church above the mountain, and the hotel’s beautiful pool located below the hotel, surrounded with forest. After I got familiar with the hotel facilities, next logical step was to take a walk around Savoca and spend some time with the locals since they were celebrating Santa Lucia day, the feast of S.Lucia includes religious ceremonies, and lots of food and sweets stands. Also, I saw locals selling their hand made stuff, mostly from wood and what I liked the most are the traditional wooden toys for kids-so cute. Returning to the hotel for dinner I was absolutely amazed with the food and atmosphere that was so worm. Service was truly at the high level and you could just see that somebody takes a good care of the ambient to make customers feel enjoyable and satisfied. I think this place is one of the most beautiful places i have visited. For sure, I will remember it forever.
You can’t visit Sicily and not enjoy every minute of it. My plan for the largest island in the Mediterranean Sea was to explore as much as possible, from beaches and traditional cuisine to monuments and Sicilian streets. Of course, not to forget little trip to the small town of Corleone wouldn’t hurt and also visiting bar Vitelli in Savoca. The first thing that comes to your mind is probably Godfather. Indeed, you’re right! Few people know that Corleone was too developed to be used for filming therefore Sicilian towns of Savoca and Forza d’Agro outside of Taormina were used instead. Can’t wait.