♣ It’s YOUR Lucky Day! ♣

♣ Si, It’s YOUR Lucky Day!♣

$ave on 2018 Fall Tours to Southern Italy

Puglia or Sicily!

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Early Bird Savings for Early Registrations!

Register By March 28th…

 $ave $200 to $250 per person!

Register for BOTH and $AVE $600 per person!

♣ ♣ ♣

Authentic, Unique, Affordable!

Travel LIKE a local with local experts – immerse and experience the lifestyle, culture, picturesque towns and villages, archeological sites and, of course… Continue reading

Posted in Boomer Travel, Come to Italy with Victoria!, Inspired Travel, Italian Culture, La Dolce Vita!, Puglia, Puglia 2018, Salento Style, Sicily, Sicily 2018, Solo Travel | Tagged , , , , , , , , | Leave a comment

♦ Only in Liguria… ♦

Let's Go to Italy Together!“Liguria is the only region in Italy that is entirely framed by natural borders: the mountains in the north form a gigantic amphitheatre facing the marine stage to the south.”
– Martina Kolb
(“On the Ligurian Edge” from Nietzsche, Freud, Benn and the Azure Spell of Liguria)

Let's Go to Italy Together!

traditional-prints-and-posters-liguria

(Map courtesy of Traditional Prints & Posters)

One of Italy’s smallest regions, Liguria shares borders with Tuscany and Emilia-Romagna to the east, Piedmonte to the north and France (Provence-Alpes-Côte d’Azur) to the west.It’s this very geography and terrain – steep, remote and compact – that has shaped and defined Liguria’s history and character. Unlike many other regions that were invaded and captured, her natural borders have kept her relatively protected and, to some extent, isolated.

Photo by Victoria De Maio

Liguria, between land and sea…

Not as famous as many of her neighbors, Liguria is rich with treasures waiting to be explored and enjoyed, for only in Liguria will you find…

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Posted in Boomer Travel, Cinque Terre, Come to Italy with Victoria!, Genoa, Italian Culture, Italian Riviera, Italy Travel Tips, Liguria, Rewarding Sightseeing, Solo Travel, Travel Planning | Tagged , , , , , , , , , | 5 Comments

♦ Only in Sicily… ♦

Let's Go to Italy Together!Surrounded by water, Sicily is the largest island in the Mediterranean and, along with her surrounding islands, Regione Siciliana is the largest region of Italy.Sicily map

As with every island, Sicily is defined by her relationship to the sea and how it has defined and shaped her history and character. With the Mar Mediterraneo (Mediterranean Sea) to the south and southwest, Mar Ionio (Ionian Sea) to the east, and Mar Tirreno (Tyrrhenian Sea) to the north, she is simultaneously protected and vulnerable.

“My favorite scent memory is the scent of the Sicilian sea!”
– Domenico DolcePhoto: Victoria De Maio

Let's Go to Italy Together!Rich in contrasts, with its magnificent seascapes, rich and bounteous farmlands, and rugged mountainous interior, Sicily is unique, enigmatic, and seductive.

Photo: Victoria De Maio

A land like no other…

Sicilians are distinctly and stubbornly Sicilian! Separated from the toe of Calabria and mainland of Italy, across the Straits of Messina by only 3 km, it may as well be a thousand! Sicilians consider themselves Sicilians first, Italians second. And to this day, 70% of Sicilians speak Sicilian, not Italian.

‘Sicily has suffered 13 dominations from which she has taken both the best and the worst. The sequence of different cultures has made Sicily a fascinating place, quite unlike any other.”
– Andrea Camilleri

And unlike any other, only in Sicily… Continue reading

Posted in Boomer Travel, Come to Italy with Victoria!, Design YOUR Dream Trip to Italy, Food Tourism, Inspired Travel, Italian Culture, Italian Style, Italy Travel Tips, Palermo, Rewarding Sightseeing, Roots in the Boot, Sicily, Sicily 2018, Siracusa, Solo Travel, Taormina, Val di Noto | Tagged , , , , , , , , , | 3 Comments

♦ Only in Puglia… ♦

Let's Go to Italy Together!“There is no way to talk about this land without being aware one is in a legendary place.”

– Roberto CotraneoPhoto Victoria De Maio

Despite her rich centuries old history and diverse cultural heritage (including being conquered and occupied or settled by Saracens, Byzantines, Normans, the Kingdom of Sicily, the Kingdom of Naples, the Hohenstaufens, the Spanish and the French and let’s not forget the coastal occupations by the Turks and the Venetians), Puglia has remained relatively unknown and undiscovered by the travel community at large…until now… Continue reading

Posted in Boomer Travel, Come to Italy with Victoria!, Inspired Travel, Italian Culture, Italy Travel Tips, Lecce, Made in Puglia!, Ostuni, Otranto, Polignano a Mare, Puglia, Rewarding Sightseeing, Salento Style, Solo Travel, Trani, Travel TipZ, Trulli of Itria Valley, Victoria's Travel TipZ Italian Style | Tagged , , , , , , | 3 Comments

No Flowers or Chocolates for This Saint!

When I travel I love researching the legends and stories of my destinations. Part of that is a curiosity about the origin of rituals, holidays, and traditions…in this case, Saint Valentine’s Day.

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No Flowers or Chocolates for This Saint!

Roses are Red,  Violets are Blue…I’m Glad I’m No Saint, Aren’t YOU?

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Typically St. Valentine’s Day conjures up images of romantisaint valentinesc, lovey-dovey stuff like hearts and flowers, boxes of chocolates, mushy greeting cards, and the like… Well, this wasn’t exactly the case for this holiday’s namesake, Saint Valentine – in fact, there was no romance for this saint! Furthermore, there are actually three potential Valentines that the day commemorates and in all three cases, they were martyred i.e., imprisoned, tortured, and executed. Yikes, not my idea of romantic or happy ending!

Hearts & flowers now...

Hearts & flowers now…

We can agree that Saint Valentine’s Day (also known as Valentine’s Day or the Feast of Saint Valentine) is observed on February 14th of each year.  So, how did our version of Saint Valentine become the Hallmark version characterized by cupid, declarations of love, romantic evenings, and hearts and flowers? Well, it depends on who you read and who you believe since, as with any good story, it gets embellished a bit over the centuries and, as in this case, can take on legendary (i.e. exaggerated) proportions. But, it all makes for a good story, so….
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Posted in Inspired Travel, SideTripZ | Tagged , , , | 9 Comments

♦ Italy Travel TipZ BlitZ: BONUS & Summary ♦

Let's Go to Italy Together! Italy Travel TipZ BlitZ: BONUS from Italy ExpertZ & Summary

GRAPHIC Victoria -VespaOne of the many serendipities of writing/blogging about and traveling/leading tours to Italy is meeting and associating with both native Italian business owners and Italophiles who share my love for Bella Italia.

In the Bonus Chapter, I have invited 19 of these fellow ExpertZ to share their best travel tip for visiting Italy. I know you’ll find their advice insightful and beneficial.

A special grazie to Contributors: Ylenia, Margie, Rick, Michela, Susan, Monica, Maria, Daniele, Susan, Lora, Shannon & Nada, and to new Contributors: Marilyn, Orna, Emanuela, Anna, Kathryn, Lucia and Federico, Francesca & Annalisa…

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Posted in Book Signings, Come to Italy with Victoria!, Design YOUR Dream Trip to Italy, Inspired Travel, Italian Culture, Italy Travel Tips, Italy Travel TipZ BlitZ, La Dolce Vita!, Travel Planning, Victoria on Amazon, Victoria's Travel TipZ Italian Style | Tagged , , , , , , , , | 4 Comments

♦ FREE Italy Travel TipZ! ♦

Let's Go to Italy Together!

FREE Italy Travel TipZ? Si!

Earlier this year, I launched my updated edition of…

Victoria’s Travel TipZ Italian Style
MORE Simple Ways to Enjoy Italian Ways on Your Next Trip to Italy

Victoria's Travel TIpZ Italian Style

Available on Amazon – Order Your Copy Today!

Let's Go to Italy Together!

And… in my ItalyTravel TipZ BlitZ series, I shared some of the 450+ tipZ from my book and…

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Posted in Book Reviews, Book Signings, Inspired Travel, Italian Culture, Italian Style, Italy Travel Tips, Italy Travel TipZ BlitZ, Rewarding Sightseeing, The Savvy Traveler, Travel Planning, Travel TipZ, Victoria on Amazon, Victoria's Travel TipZ Italian Style | Tagged , , , , , , , , , , | Leave a comment

Italy Travel Tip: An Intimate Look at Puglia, A Guest Post

Apologies for earlier misfire!

Let's Go to Italy Together!Today’s Guest Post, originally published two years ago, is from my lovely friend, tour partner, and Expert contributor to my book, Ylenia Sambati.

Yle and I met via fellow Italophiles and the internet almost 5 years ago when the idea of offering small group tours to Italy was percolating for me. Ylenia and Puglia came across my radar, we connected, and it has been nothing but fabulous ever since!

Photo Victoria De Maio

We can’t wait to welcome you to Puglia!

My connection and friendship with Ylenia, as well as her partner Michele, and all of the fabulous people I’ve met and worked with in Puglia, is one that I treasure. It is through them that I have come to love and appreciate all aspects of this unique region: the culture and customs, the art and history, the cuisine, the traditions…the people.

Ylenia’s love for Puglia and the Salento sub-region of Puglia is deep and contagious. For this and many reasons, I invited Ylenia to share about her roots and passion… Continue reading

Posted in Come to Italy with Victoria!, Guest Posts, Italian Culture, Italian Style, La Dolce Vita!, Puglia, Rewarding Sightseeing, Salento Style, Solo Travel | Tagged , , , , , , , , , | 18 Comments

Solo but NOT Alone!

Let's Go to Italy Together!Is it possible to travel solo in a small group and enjoy all of the benefits of independent travel? You bet!!!

Photo by Victoria De Maio

Let’s go…together!

Traveling in a small group can be the best of all travel experiences, especially for the solo traveler, and here are 10 reasons why!

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Posted in Art of Packing, Come to Italy with Victoria!, Inspired Travel, Is a Tour for You?, La Dolce Vita!, Liguria, Puglia, Rewarding Sightseeing, S.O.S. - Just in Case..., Safe TravelZ, Solo Travel, The Savvy Traveler, Travel Planning, Travel SmartZ, Travel TipZ, Tuscany | Tagged , , , , , , , , | 7 Comments

♦Italy Travel TipZ BlitZ: #9 Some Things Never Change & #10 Why You Came to Italy♦

Italy Travel TipZ BlitZ: #9 Some Things Never Change &

#10 Why You Came to Italy in the First Place

We travel for many reasons – to experience, enjoy, and learn about other cultures and ways of life. Doubtless, Italy is at the top of many lists. Dreamy photos and Hollywood stereotypes perpetuate the romantic image as well as the stereotypes.
For those and many other reasons, I feel that it’s important to prepare you for the real and authentic Italy…

Photo: Victoria De Maio

Some things never change…

It’s important to keep in mind…

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Posted in Come to Italy with Victoria!, Inspired Travel, Italian Culture, Italian Style, Italy Travel Tips, Italy Travel TipZ BlitZ, La Dolce Vita!, Travel Planning, Victoria on Amazon, Victoria's Travel TipZ Italian Style | Tagged , , , , , , , , | 2 Comments