Italia Part 2 – Travel Journal

I always get itchy feet…I’m always thinking about where my next trip will take me and often wish I had more lives (and more money!) to travel to all these places on my bucket list. But I felt good the other day….I created a new board on my Pinterest of all the places I’d been to and seeing this collection opened my eyes and made me sooooo grateful. I am one lucky girl! I loved every one of these places and I hope to be able to share some of these experiences with you in the future. So today I’m continuing with my travel journal. And this time it’s Cinque Terre (our second stop of our 2013 trip).

I’d been to Italy before a couple of times and travelled pretty much the main touristy places but I’d never been to Cinque Terre. In fact, I’d never heard of it until I learnt about it in some blogs I follow and fell in love with the bloggers’ pictures. I had to go!!

So here we are….

We stayed in a small hotel in Riomaggiore on the main street Via Colombo, which was lovely and although the Via dell’Amore (“The Way of Love”), the coastal path that links all 5 villages, was closed and we couldn’t walk it due to landslide, we had a wonderful time.

We easily explored the 5 villages hopping on and off trains (very cheap) and hiking up and down 🙂

Although the most common opinion is that Vernazza is the most beautiful of these villages, my favourite was Riomaggiore. It was much less busy with tourists and it felt so relaxing walking up and down the paths. I loved it.

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On our second day there, we visited the furthest village in the north, Monterosso al Mare and then Vernazza. We spent another beautiful day. We visited the rather modern beach and then walked up to the other side of the mountain where the old town is found. A nice, slightly challenging walk but lovely nonetheless.

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In the afternoon, we continued onto Vernazza (which was beautiful indeed!!) We watched the waves on a busy little beach and ate some ice-cream as well as explored the more quiet streets.

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On our final day in the Cinque Terre, we visited the remaining two villages, but this time in the rain. Corniglia was a very quiet village. You had to walk (up!) for a quarter of an hour to get to the village from the train station and there weren’t many tourists. It was mainly the locals having a chat in very narrow streets. There were some gorgeous views of the countryside though. We started hiking up to the next village along (Manarola) but after 40 minutes came back on our steps as we weren’t sure how long it was going to take and it was chucking it down! Instead we had to wait 1 hour for a delayed train in the freezing cold! We had lunch in Manarola and then headed back to Riomaggiore for some packing and some chilling out before our next destinations: Lucca and Florence.

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The food was amazing there – so much fish and seafood! I had swordfish, sea bass with a tomato and caper sauce (yum!), langoustines in a tomato sauce and a lot of white wine 🙂

Bella Italia

Love,

Sabrina xxx

Italia Part 1 – Travel Journal

Travelling is my passion. Alan Watts once said ‘What would you like to do if money were no object?’. Well, my answer is rather simple: travel this amazing world, meet amazing people, try wonderful foods! I guess one of my dreams would have been to be an explorer (although I’m so far from being an adventurer, lol. I get scared so easily!) and I hope that one day my son grows up to marvel at the wonders of this planet too.

I’ve been to quite a few countries over the years and have plans to travel some more but today I thought I’d share some photos from our last getaway last year. My husband and I had a little break and went over to Italy. I’d been there a couple of times before: once on a school trip (travelling from Western France on a coach down to Naples), another time visiting friends in Sienna and Rome and another time spending New Year’s eve in Venice. I love this country so much I keep going back. One of my secret dreams is to live there for a bit but shhh, don’t tell my husband as he would freak out! He loves Italy but is not a keen linguist.

We first flew to Pisa where we stayed a couple of days, then travelled to Cinque Terre, Lucca, Florence and finished our stay in Rome where my brother-in-law caught up with us.

When we arrived in Pisa, we were surprised at how deserted it was. We’d booked a hotel between the train station and the Piazza dei Miracoli, so fairly central. After dropping our luggage at the hotel, we got our maps out and went exploring. Even the Piazza dei Miracoli was rather quiet. It was getting close to dinner time and there were no restaurants open (not sure why?). We had a lovely time though. We spent an hour walking around the square enjoying the tranquility and reading books on the Piazza. And we did find a restaurant in one of the quiet streets.

Here are a few photos:

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The weather wasn’t great but we managed to escape the rain and the sky works amazingly well in black and white. And we got to see the beautiful Leaning Tower!

The next day, we hopped on a train (trenitalia is so cheap and amazing!! I’d definitely recommend travelling by train) and headed to Riomaggiore but I’ll talk about Cinque Terre another time…

What would you guys fancy doing if money were no object?

Love,

Sabrina xxx