As I mentioned yesterday in my reflection on the joy of being home, we just returned from vacation a few days ago. As we spent ten days in Italy, and the ‘I’ day fell just a few days after our return, it seemed fitting that I post something about the trip today. There will be more detailed posts coming, but for now, here are three of my favorite things from the trip. (Read all my subsequent posts on Italy.)
- Cinque Terre. My husband and I shared this Italian vacation with both sets of our parents, and I think all six of us agreed that Cinque Terre was a highlight of the trip. Beautiful, quiet, picturesque, and full of charm, the five cities that make up Cinque Terre will make you feel like you’ve stepped back in time to a simpler (and more colorful!) world. Each city is a bit different and offers lots of opportunities to explore. We also found Cinque Terre to be much less crowded and less touristy than other places we visited, and as it’s a popular day trip, by dinner time, it was deserted and felt like our own personal seaside retreat. If you’re looking for quiet adventure, Cinque Terre is a great place to be. (Read my full city guide to Cinque Terre.)
- Espresso. The Italians know their coffee. I’m not sure if espresso will ever be the same for me. From its fine quality to its steal of a deal (I never paid more than 1.50 euros for a shot) to the efficient Italian tradition of drinking it right at the bar and then going on your merry way, it’s going to be hard to adjust back to inferior American cups o’ joe.
- Duomo di Milano. This cathedral is the largest in Italy, and the fifth largest in the world. But those facts, for me, were nowhere near as jaw-dropping as the terrace that you’re allowed to walk on. The fact that they let you walk all over this rooftop is just incredible to me. Construction on the church was started in the 1300s, and you can still walk on the roof like I’m sure you would have been able to when it was in constant use. And it’s not just a cupola like when you go up in Brunelleschi’s dome in Florence, it is the full width and breadth of this massive roof. It’s a unique and breathtaking adventure! (Read my full city guide to Milan, including the Duomo.)