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Why Como is One of The Best Cities on The Lake

I’ve gone to Lake Como dozens of times. I’ve crisscrossed the lake on the ferry, enjoyed spritz’s lakeside and even popped a bottle of prosecco in a fishing boat offshore of Bellagio after a day on the water. And yet I had never actually visited the city of Como. We live much closer to the Lecco… Read more »

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My Experience with The Italian Healthcare System

After I had gone to the courthouse to get married. After the signed documents and a visit to the US embassy. After I had gone to dozens of public offices and was finally a legal resident of Italy, there was still a very important document I needed to obtain. ASAP, they told me. I needed my Tessera… Read more »

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Wine Regions of Italy: Lombardy

Lombardy is completely surrounded by the stars of wine production — Veneto, Piedmont and Tuscany – so you’d be forgiven for overlooking the regional wines, but Lombardy’s wines can still hold their own. Most famous for its sparkling whites and deep Valtellina reds, Lombardy also has a range of lightly sparkling reds that are surprisingly versatile.  As a… Read more »

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Photo Essay: The Curated Beauty of Isola Bella and Isola Madre

Isola Madre and Isola Bella are apart of the Borromean islands on Lago Maggiore in Northern Italy. Originally created for the Borromeo family, the islands along with much of the tourist attractions in the Gulf of Borromeo are owned to this day by the family. Originally rocky outposts, over the course of nearly five centuries… Read more »

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How to Visit the Isole Borromee

I’ve visited a lot of rich people’s gardens in Italy. And why wouldn’t I? They’re beautiful, abundant, easy to visit, a feast for the senses. I find them pleasant. I don’t love visiting old palaces, but the gardens attached to them, now that has my name all over it. It might seem like a strange way to spend time and… Read more »

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How to See The Last Supper in Milan

So many people overlook Milan. The city is industrial, big, gray and, of course, not Florence, Rome or Venice. Everyone knows about the Colosseum, the Duomo of Florence, the canals of Venice, but few can name a jewel of Milan. In Milan you can see international models taking pictures in front of the world’s largest Gothic cathedral…. Read more »

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Sticking Close to Home: When Backyard Travel is a Must

Embracing change in one aspect of your life has a sort of snowball effect: It will usually roll change through all aspects of your life. Deciding to marry an Italian and move to Italy five years ago is a clear example – every aspect of my life was changed! Now, welcoming sweet baby Adeline into our lives, the… Read more »

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A Guide to Bergamo Alta

Bergamo is a city with two unique city centers. There’s lower Bergamo or Città Bassa and upper Bergamo, or Città Alta.  In general, Città Bassa is the commercial heart of Bergamo and Città Alta is the touristy centro storico. Bergamo Alta is the oldest part of the city, dating from the Middle Ages, with 16th-century Venetian walls fortifying the… Read more »

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The Beautiful Botanic Gardens of Villa Carlotta

Lake Como is surrounded by ville. White, yellow and rose-colored mansions perch on the hills around the lake, perfectly complemented by their extravagant, well-manicured gardens. This time I visited the extravagant, well-manicured Villa Carlotta. Last year I decided that I’d had enough of visiting ancient palaces. I was over paying to tour rich dead people’s homes. Their gardens,… Read more »

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A Guide to Monza, Italy

Just 10 miles north of Milan is Monza, a city with all the fashion and haughtiness of Milan, at a fraction of the size. Monza is the third largest city of Lombardy and the capital of the province of Brianza. The city stretches out like tentacles, reaching its influence well into the surrounding towns. Maybe because… Read more »