Back from Italy- Thanks Fodorites!

Sep 30th, 2010, 08:00 PM
  #1  
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Back from Italy- Thanks Fodorites!

We're just settling back in after a WONDERFUL 2.5 week trip to Northern Italy: Venice, Florence, Siena, and Rome. Thanks to everyone's suggestions and tips, it was the perfect vacation: exciting, relaxing, educational and best of all: YUMMY!

Fodorites were right about Corte Campana in Venice and Dei More in Florence- top notch B&Bs with fabulous hosts! Alma Domus in Siena was also a tremendous steal!

We found the "Noble County of Aquila" in Siena and bought lots of souvenirs with the county seal on it, and we saw just about every museum you can name, plus one that was off the beaten track: Museo Stibbert on the outskirts of Florence. (Not much of a tour, but a fascinating collection- some of which you can actually TOUCH!)

We found San Crispino's gelato to be a bit overrated, but we delighted in the subtle and rich flavors at Gelateria del teatro in Rome. We also enjoyed the most fantastic bisteca fiorentina with chianti classico at La Spada in Florence, and some sinfully indulgent steak with truffles at a little family-owned place in Siena, called Osteria Sotto le Fonti. (Their landlord captures the wild boar for their ragu himself- delicious!) We'd also recommend ravioli with peccorino and pear at Coquinarias in Florence- it's an EXPLOSION of flavor!

The weather was gorgeous in early September and the crowds were quite reasonable (especially when we got advanced reservations at the Uffizi and Academia). We didn't make it to Pisa, but only because we were having too much fun in Florence to take a day trip! (We don't regret the decision one bit!)

We found Venice to be quite underrated- yes the weekend was crowded and hectic, but during the week, it was a bustling wonder of sights, sounds and smells (none of them bad- what were people talking about? Venice doesn't stink!) Just don't sleep with your windows open like we did- we got so badly bitten by mosquitoes during the night that we looked like we had chicken pox!

Thanks to everyone who helped us to plan our trip. We stayed EXACTLY within our budget, but we felt like we were living like royalty much of the time because after cutting some unnecessary corners, we had money to spend on the things that REALLY mattered to us: good food, a few souvenirs, and lots of "experiences" (museums, tours, etc.). Best of all, we got lots of great pictures to help us remember our wonderful trip!

Now we just have one more question for you all: in 2012, shall we go to Egypt and Israel for a week, or on a cruise around Greece???
2Aquilas is offline  
Sep 30th, 2010, 08:32 PM
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We are off to Rome in two weeks..cAn you tell me where the
"Gelateria del teatro in Rome" is. is it near the terminal.. we are staying at the Sonya Hotel
ParrotMom is offline  
Sep 30th, 2010, 09:02 PM
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It's not going to be too close to you near Termini, but it's worth a little side trip. Check it out:
http://www.foodinrome.com/gelateria-del-teatro/
I loved a scoop of almond with a scoop of pure chocolate. My husband loved the lemon cake and the chocolate and wine. Lavender was also interesting and unusual.
2Aquilas is offline  
Oct 1st, 2010, 06:14 AM
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Where is "Noble County of Aquila" in Siena?
kybourbon is online now  
Oct 1st, 2010, 06:26 AM
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The city is divided into districts or counties- that's just one of them. (We were there just after the Palio (sp?) so the flags and banners were still up. I'm not sure if it would so be easy to identify the districts otherwise. There were a few crests up on the walls, but you had to look for them... We were lucky to stumble upon the streets that fall into "our" district- not far from the main square. We brought home a ton of souvenirs with the eagle emblem!
2Aquilas is offline  
Oct 1st, 2010, 07:13 PM
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Ah. The contrada of Siena. Thought you were talking about something else that had to do with L'aquila, Italy.

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Contrade_of_Siena

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/L%27Aquila
kybourbon is online now  

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