Where to Stay in Florence with a View of the Duomo


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Looking for a place to stay in Florence with a view of the Duomo?? I got you covered!

A stone’s throw away from the Duomo, in one of the best streets of the city is Asso’s Place- a luxury apartment in the heart of Florence. This 2nd floor apartment was my find on a dull Monday morning in Delhi. And a stroke of luck available on the dates I wanted!

It is your answer on where to stay in Florence with a view of the Duomo!

If you rent one room in the apartment, the whole apartment is yours! So no sharing with anyone which means- 2 bedrooms + 2 baths + a fully stocked kitchen + a spacious living room + a balcony all yours!! Win win!
Where to Stay in Florence with a View of the Duomo: My bedroom at Asso’s Place

Where to Stay in Florence with a View of the Duomo: The “To Die For View” at Asso’s Place

Where to Stay in Florence with a View of the Duomo: View from the living area at Asso’s Place

….Imagine staying in Florence with a view of the Duomo

Florence’s Duomo is seriously the answer to sore eyes and heart. Waking to this view right in front of me was surreal. It was very comfortable being in the centre of everything yet being in a quiet apartment. When the bells chimed every hour, I had my own quiet moment..Just me and the Duomo.

Some places are extraordinary and dreamy..

The hospitality here was par excellence. I was left a bottle of prosecco along with milk, cake and biscuits for my breakfast. There was a couch in the living room where I could relax with hand picked books by Piero himself. And of course I could sneak a view of the Duomo of Florence from there!

x agenzie

Where to Stay in Florence with a View of the Duomo: From the library and desk at Asso’s Place

Where to Stay in Florence with a View of the Duomo: Second bedroom at Asso’s Place

Where to Stay in Florence with a View of the Duomo: Mornings at Asso’s Place

Where to Stay in Florence with a View of the Duomo: Living room at Asso’s Place

Locals to the rescue..

Piero Asso, a local from Florence, is extremely passionate about Florence. He volunteers to show Florence’s offbeat sites and neighborhoods to his guests and calls it “Walk with Piero“. I was privileged to be shown Florence in a new light!

This is what I love about Italy- the people and the connections that come at the right time almost just when you need it and promise to last for a lifetime. Hoping to see Piero and his family in India one day.

Related Reading:

An Evening in Florence with BonAppetour

Ascending 463 Steps to Florence’s Duomo

A Room with a View by E.M. Forster


Disclosure: I was hosted for the 2 nights at Asso’s Place but as always, all opinions here are my own. Thanks Piero for providing me these lovely pictures!


Tips for Solo Female Travel in Italy


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It is not easy being a solo female traveler.…Especially in India. There are many cultural and societal issues attached to it which I don’t want to get into. But around me, there are women who travel alone, who want to travel alone and many who admire others for doing it. But often the women who want to travel alone either don’t find the courage to do it or don’t get the required support/approval from family. (I told you it’s tricky here!)

Hence, I know there are many women who would find this post on “Tips for Solo Female Travel in Italy” necessary and befitting. I hope to give those women that push to travel alone!

My Story on Solo Travel in Italy

When I first thought of traveling to Italy alone, I was nervous and excited but I remember I really wanted to do it. I was told how safe Italy is from people here in Delhi and even though I heard it a lot, I wanted to try myself to be sure.

Coming from a very open minded and supportive family, I most often than not faced the concern of safety more than the concern of approval. My family stood like a backbone, supporting me for my solo trips to Italy.  I was usually questioned on the “hows” of traveling solo more than the “whys”. So I agree, traveling solo in Italy was much easier for me than any of you.

But here’s how I help you…..!!

I strongly feel you should do what you want in life. And by that I don’t mean going against your parents wishes but standing up for what you believe in. If traveling solo is what it is, do not overthink and dive in! But first, you need to be convinced yourself! Once that is figured, prepare your family for it and read my tips on enjoying solo travel and keeping yourself safe! 😉

Ishita shoot edits (140 of 765)

Tips for Solo Female Travel in Italy: Do you want to travel solo??

Tips for Solo Female Travel in Italy

Honestly, my first solo trip in Italy was not only my first solo trip outside of my country but also MY VERY FIRST solo trip! I learnt many things on the road and wanted to pass them as a handy list of tips to anyone looking to travel alone in Italy or beyond:

  • Stay Vigilant Around Train Stations: First things first. You and your belongings! Keep them together because one look away from your bag might turn to be very expensive or dangerous to you. If there is anywhere I have felt unsafe in Italy, it has been those small town train stations where there is no soul in sight but that one stranger eyeing your bag.
  • Say Hello to Morning/Afternoon flights: Take flight that lands in morning or afternoon because when you are in a foreign land (where you also don’t speak the local language) you should be reaching your accommodation at a reasonable time and preferably before it’s too dark.
  • Never have all Cash and Card in One Place: I know you have read this countless times before but this is 100% true. Please don’t make this mistake! Spread your cash and cards in different pouches, bags, inside socks, packets etc. Don’t carry it all with you either!
  • Try a Group Tour: Feeling too lonely?? Book a cooking class or dine in a local’s home like I did. It not only helps in making more friends but also drives away that loneliness!

Tips for Solo Female Travel in Italy: Italy: Pizza Making Class in Rome

  • Know the Cost of a Taxi: Stuck somewhere?? Too eager to get to your hotel?? Take a taxi from outside the airport/train stations and make sure you research online beforehand. Have the Trenit App downloaded on your phone to check cost of train in Italy.
  • Save Numbers of your Country’s Embassy: Keep numbers of your country’s Embassy handy. I have the number of the Indian Embassy in Rome saved in my phone. In case of an emergency, this is not only useful but also calms you down to see your people in a foreign land. Also, make sure you have copies of your Passport and Visa with you (just in case).

Tips for Solo Female Travel in Italy: Strike a Conversation with locals

  • Strike Conversations with Locals but Be Aware: Even if it is just a Grazie (Thank you) or a Buongiorno (Good Morning) you will be surprised how friendly locals are in Italy. They can really go out of the way to help you and knowing Italian helps. Trust me, there is so much kindness in the world, and Italy reminds me that each time. If you feel there is catcalling or over friendliness on the street, just politely say, no grazie (no, thank you) and walk away swiftly!
  • Keep in Touch with Family: I know solo travel gets lonely at times, especially early evenings (for me). Staying in touch with family and friends always helps. Let them know where you are, send a picture of yourself, they are waiting to hear from you!
  • Look Confident: Give the impression that you know. This helps to avoid people to come near you in the first place. Common sense and gut are my strongest suits when traveling alone!
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    Tips for Solo Female Travel in Italy: Look Confident

  • Enjoy Eating Alone: Dining alone but feeling awkward and nervous?? Carry a book or a pair of headphones. Never in Italy have I felt that I should be treated differently because I am alone. Of course the occasional stare will happen in ANY country, but I have ended up chatting with a lot of people because of this very reason!

Remember….. these are only a few…it’s baby steps to everything! You can’t be a pro at traveling alone after one trip. So give yourself time to get accustomed to it. Research research research. Read a lot of blogs before going anywhere. Even in Italy that’s what I do!


Tips for Solo Female Travel in Italy: Are you ready??

While writing this post, I saw myself featured on Texas Mom In Torino’s Blog where she says “I don’t know anyone who is as brave as you are to travel solo“. I am deeply touched and also very flattered because I never thought solo female travel would be such a big deal. But I know there are many of out there looking for that one ray of hope and inspiration to start it. So be brave and embrace it!

Traveling alone in Italy has been the most exhilarating experiences of my life! I can’t wait to do it again!

Happy Traveling Ladies!!

Related Reading:

Things to Know before you Travel to Italy

Things I Love About Travel

For the People of Italy and Beyond

Street Art in Rome


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It was a cool crisp morning during #WinterInRome and our group was heading out to see Street Art in Rome with PersonalizedItaly.



Our first stop for Street Art in Rome tour was the neighborhood of Ostiense. The tour started with this 25th Anniversary Special Mural outside Cartoon Network’s office. I thought it was striking and super cute since cartoons capture expressions in the best way.


Street Art Rome: Cartoon Network Office, Ostiense

Then came the Wall of Fame….


Street Art Rome: Wall of Fame, Ostiense


Street Art Rome: Frida Kahlo and me


Street Art Rome: Wall of Fame, Ostiense


Street Art Rome: Wall of Fame, Ostiense

Another eye catching Street Art in Rome was this building below done by the artist BLU. It is on Ostiense’s Via del Porto Fluviale and is the most prominent street art I have ever seen!


Street Art Rome: Ostiense


Next stop for Street Art in Rome tour was the neighborhood of Pigneto where Italian Director and artist Pier Paolo Pasolini rules! He was in love with the neighborhood and artists have made sure to capture the visionary all along Via Fanfulla da Lodi.

For instance, Pasolini’s face is behind this superhero and symbolizes a very famous article Pasoli once wrote for a newspaper. The title of the article was “Io so i nomi” (I know the names) and hence on the mural as well.


Street Art Rome: Pasolini depicted as a superhero


Street Art Rome: Pasolini’s famous eye

This famous face below, of the actress Margherita Caruso, is another popular Street Art in Rome. She played the young Virgin Mary in Pier Pasolini’s film “Il vangelo secondo Matteo” (The gospel according to Matthew).


Street Art Rome: Margherita Caruso in Pigneto



Rome Street Art: Pasolini



Street Art Rome: Pigneto

All in all, it was very interesting to see Rome’s Street Art, definitely a fad and a great way to get off the tourist track. Special thanks to PersonalizedItaly and Linda from The Beehive who got this planned for our group.

What about you…. Do you like street art?? Do you enjoy this new “movement” of beautifying abandoned buildings and spaces to better a neighborhood??

Subscribe to my MONTHLY NEWSLETTER to know more on ROME!

5 Books on Italy to Read this Spring


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No matter how busy I am, I always have a book or two going on in the background. And one out of the two will be a book on Italy. Predictable much?? I also re-read a lot of my favorite books. Do you??

For instance, recently I re-read Italo Calvino’s If on a Winter’s Night a Traveler and loved it, finding newer meanings to Calvino’s eccentric tale and words. Anyway I thought of compiling a list of “5 Books on Italy to Read this Spring” for books written in English or translated from Italian. Hope you add more to your reading pile!

Related reading: Ten Favorite Books on Italy


Gomorrah by Roberto Saviano

If you are someone looking to read a book that exposes The Mafia, pick this one! The author, with his life like characters and gritty image, shows the dark side of Italy. It is not an ordinary book and needs courage to be picked up to read the raw, vivid and horrific details. The book shows a new style of prose too. Bravo to Saviano! That being said, I would prefer to read this book in Italian one day as a lot got lost in translation.

Buy the book by clicking on the link below:

Call Me By Your Name by André Aciman

Are you looking for a sensual, passionate and powerful book?? Call Me By Your Name is exactly that…. plus a little more. I read it on recommendation by Jasmine and I am so happy I picked it up! The story, set in Northern Italy, is about the irresistible relationship of two men. (no spoiler zone) After reading the book, I saw the 80s nostalgia on screen and have to say I equally loved the movie too. It made me sad and giddy at the same time. Call Me By Your Name will get in your skin.

Buy the book by clicking on the link below:

Waking Isabella by Melissa Muldoon

If you are interested in Italian art and traditions and also want a little Tuscany on the side, Waking Isabella is the book to pick. Italy Book Tours was most kind to send me this book, a story of the past and present that moves back and forth. The author entwines it best with the richness of the town of Arezzo. Although the story is a tad predictable, I enjoyed it from the leading character’s point of view the most. Melissa’s blog is a great resource for anyone wanting to learn Italian and she had interviewed yours truly for her blog 2 years back.

Buy the book by clicking on the link below:

The Land Where Lemons Grow by Helena Attlee

I am amazed at how much Italy offers as a nation. It continues to surprise me daily. The Land Where Lemons Grow is Helena’s deep research and prose on the citrus fruit. Yes, it is a book on the citrus really. Although it originates from The Himalayas, it’s connection with Bella Italia is evident from the first page. The author travels all around Italy searching this exotic fruit and it’s varieties and hence the name. The book has recipes, maps and interviews in addition to it’s specialized subject, making it a perfect combination of food and travel. Next time, I would prefer to read it under the shade of a lemon tree in Liguria.

Buy the book by clicking on the link below:

Spritz: Italy’s Most Iconic Aperitivo Cocktail by Talia Baiocchi and Leslie Pariseau

Ending the list with Cheers! I saw this book on Instagram last year and later at a cafe where I browsed for hours. A gorgeously printed book with interesting stories and DIY recipes, Spritz instantly puts you in a better mood! It is the perfectly breezy yet informative coffee table (errr cocktail table??) book about modern Italian living. Don’t you think all of us Italophilies can write their own version of this very famous Italian drink?!

Buy the book by clicking on the link below:

Related Reading: #BooksonItaly Contemporary and Travel

Disclosure: There are “ affiliate links” on my blog. If you click on a picture and make a purchase through these links, I will receive a small commission (at no cost to you). Thanks for supporting my blog as always. Grazie tanto!


Chasing Raphael: Rome-Urbino-Delhi


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You know Raphael?? (Raffaello) Of course you do! One of the greatest Italian painters from the 15th century, Raphael is a name I associate from my 7th grade history book. Well it seemed I followed his footsteps this year…..Or he followed mine….

Chasing Raphael: Rome-Urbino-Delhi


Raphael (1483-1520)


I was in Rome where Raphael is buried. The Pantheon (which is one of my favorite monuments in the city) is his resting place where he supposedly asked to be buried. I visit The Pantheon every time I go to Rome and this time was no different….That was the first of seeing Raphael.


The Pantheon where Raphael is buried


After Rome, a week later I found myself in Raphael’s home town! Urbino is the town where he was born and it is wholly and solely his town. You cannot mistake it as you see postcards, stores and streets named after him. Below is Raphael’s house and that is how I met Raphael again.

I took a tour in town with Giovanna Luminati from Urbino who is extremely passionate about languages and her land. She enlightened me about her wonderful town completely. If you are ever in Urbino, drop her a message and take a tour. You won’t regret! She can be found on the official Tourism page of Pesaro Urbino.


House of Raphael in Urbino


Raphael is everywhere in Urbino


I returned back home to Delhi and found out that there was a digital exhibition of 35 of Raphael’s works! Unbelievable. My parents and I went to see it.

Some unedited pictures from the wonderful digital exhibit follow. These truly capture the painter’s life of less than 4 decade aptly. What a coincidence to get a chance to “meet” this extraordinary painter again and that too 3 times in 3 weeks!


Raphael in Delhi!


La Madonna di Foligno (Madonna of Foligno)

La Madonna di Foligno was painted first on wood and later on canvas. In 1797 the French took the painting to Paris. It was only returned to The Vatican in 1816.


Il Trionfo di Galatea (The Triumph of Galatea)

Il Trionfo di Galatea was commissioned to be made for Villa Farnesina in Rome. Dolphins and winged cupids! What’s not to like??


Madonna del Cardillino (Madonna and the Goldfinch)


Sposalizio della Vergine (The Wedding of the Virgin)

Sposalizio della Vergine was painted by Raphael when he was only 21! Simply mind blown! The original is now housed in Brera, Milan.

There were many other paintings of his that I wasn’t familiar with, some of them I saw for the first time. However, the gallery has all the information you need and is definitely worth visiting if you are an art lover.. Or maybe go there just to say hello to Raphael like I did.


Price: INR 20.

Address: National Gallery of Modern Art, Jaipur House, New Delhi.

The exhibit ends on March 4th, 2018.

Related Reading: Palazzo Vecchio in Florence

Disclosure: There are affiliate links on my blog. If you click on a picture and purchase something through these links, I will receive a small commission (at no cost to you). Thanks for supporting Italophilia! Grazie tanto@!

Winter in Rome: Where to Eat and Stay


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One of the most commonly asked questions from people traveling from India is, “Is there vegetarian food in Rome?”. Of course there is! I can’t begin to tell how much Italians love their vegetables (almost as much as us Indians).



There is so much to choose from!! Salads, pasta, bruschette to lightly cooked vegetables, soups, risotto, pizza and fried food (sweet or salted). And though I am a meat lover, I love my greens too. During Winter in Rome we explored places offering a healthy balance of both. Bookmark this post, people!

Winter in Rome: Where to Eat

Ristorante Santa Lucia: Summer or Winter this place is a dream! Do you remember the movie Eat Pray Love where Julia Roberts dined with a big group of locals in Rome??! Well that is Ristorante Santa Lucia! I love the minimalist decor and fabulous service. Usually when a big group arrives, the service is laid back and slow. However, the team of Ristorante Santa Lucia are super swift and kind. Even a simple plate of bruschette was so delicious!

Largo Febo, 12.


Winter in Rome: Ristorante Santa Lucia

Ristorante Regina: Just at the corner of The Beehive is Ristorante Regina. It is a family run restaurant with a no frills service and old school interiors. I loved the quantity of rgatoni they offered me and the three different types of artichokes. Buonissimi!! The tiramisu was one of the best I had in Italy so far! (Closed Sunday)

Via dei Mille, 46.

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Winter in Rome: Ristorante Regina

Trapizzino Trilussa: I know you have read about Trapizzino (small sandwich) on this post of mine so sparing all the love and showing you all my green trapizzino below. A light snack perfect with a glass of wine or two, go for the polpetta al sugo (meatballs). The Trapizzino chain is going strong and is now also in Rome’s Trastevere neighborhood, Mercato Centrale in Termini and Milan.

Piazza Trilussa, 46.


Winter in Rome: Trapizzino

Osteria Grappolo d’Oro: Contrary to popular belief, there are very good places to eat at Campo de’ Fiori. Are you looking to have a perfect plate of carbonara?? Wines from Lazio?? Roman Food?? Grappolo d’Oro is your answer! The kind hospitality of the team at Grappolo d’Oro won me! As is the case in most Italian restaurants, I am amazed at the exquisite presentation of the simplest of things! Very reasonable pricing.

Piazza della Cancelleria 80.


Winter in Rome: Grappolo d’Oro

Open Baladin Roma: Not a fan of wine?? Try a variety of craft beers at Open Baladin! Another one at the Campo de’ Fiori that should not be missed. I first tried Open in Turin. Great choice of Italian beer at reasonable prices.

Via degli specchi, 6


Winter in Rome: Open Baladin

Winter in Rome: Where to Stay

I am sold for another #WinterinRome and I know that many of you are too! It feels so good receiving messages on my Newsletter and social media to know that my travel in Rome has helped you see it in a new light. So there is a ……..


Book your “Winter In Rome” and consider staying at The Beehive (a stone’s throw away from the train station in Rome). The owners have happily offered a 10% discount to any of you if you use the code “ITALOPHILIAWIR” for your stay at The Beehive during Winter i.e. November- February.  (not including Dec 31st and Jan 1st) There is no expiration date to this deal so book it any time any year. Isn’t that a great offer and also a surprise!?!

The Beehive is a boutique hostel offering excellent services such as private rooms and dorms with a lavish breakfast spread. They have great breakfast options (vegan included) written on a blackboard that makes it so personal and warm. I stayed at The Beehive in 2015 as well and would happily recommend this place to anyone looking for a friendly atmosphere + a budget stay.

They also have a sister hotel called Hotel Urbe – on the adjacent street. It is where I stayed this time. Super cozy, comfortable and pretty with a great street view.


Winter in Rome: Hotel Urbe

PS: This post is not specific to eating and staying in Winter ONLY but since I explored these places during the time, I decided to name the post as such.



Disclosure: There are “ affiliate links” on my blog. If you click on a picture, it will take you to and if you happen to purchase something through these links, I will receive a small commission (at no cost to you). Thanks for supporting Italophilia.

Winter in Rome: 5 Things to Do


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If you have been to Rome in other seasons apart from Winter, you would know what I mean when I associate it with long queues, waiting time to eat, pushing and shoving and high airfares. I mean I love visiting Rome any season of the year but Winter in Rome was an entirely different experience!


Winter in Rome is not only more relaxed with fewer crowds (see any picture from summer) but also more prettier and pleasant. The maximum and minimum temperature in mid January was around 15 degree C and 6 degree C respectively. My friends from The Beehive and Personalized Italy created an enriching Blogger Retreat to see the best of Rome in Winter. This was the 4th edition. Read here for more.

Based on my experience, I’ve collated a list of 5 Things for you to do when you visit Rome in Winter. Enjoy!

Winter in Rome: 5 Things to Do

1. Spend an Evening at the Pincio: Imagine the sunset, St. Peter’s Basilica right in front of you, negligible crowds and music in the background. There can be nothing more romantic than that, right?? The Pincio Terrace is my new favorite place in Rome that has mind blowing views of the city! Not only can you see the layers of Rome but also visit it’s top attractions in no time (Piazza del Popolo, Spanish Steps, Via del Corso etc.)

Pincio gets it’s name from the Pincii family that occupied the area in 4th century A.D. Spend an evening on the terrace at Pincio and thank me later!


Winter in Rome: View from Pincio Terrace


Winter in Rome: The Spanish Steps

2. Take the Romantic Poets Timeless Inspiration with Context Travel: Winter in Rome means making maximum use of tours and guides that are otherwise fully booked in summer. Context Travel graciously offered their “Romantic Poets Timeless Inspiration” showing us Literature and Italy – my two best friends. It was indescribable learning about Keats and Shelley’s time in the eternal city.

There was a long walk at the Non Catholic Cemetery at the graves of Keats, Shelley and Henry James’ heroine Daisy Miller followed by a visit to Pincio and Keats and Shelley’s Home at the Spanish Steps. Oh and it was also followed by a glass of champagne on the private terrace of Keats and Shelley! Not a bad way to celebrate Winter in Rome, right?? A special thanks to our guide Hillary for a great evening and who also informed us that Mick Jagger read Shelley’s poem Adonais in the memory of guitarist Brian Jones in 2014!


Winter in Rome: Champagne at the Spanish Steps


Winter in Rome: Tour with Context Travel

3. Book a tour with Foodies in Rome: Another great way to see Winter in Rome is taking a cooking class with Dominique from Foodies in Rome. An extremely warm and friendly person, Dominique knows the requirements of her clients well. By the end of the tour, I felt as if I was her friend. She arranged a superb pizza making class and took us to the legendary Forno in Campo de’ Fiori. We learnt how to make the best pizza al taglio with gurus Fabrizio Roscioli and Dino Bartocci. See the video below to get a taste of our pizza making class!

#WinterInRome An exclusive Pizza making class by the lovely Dominique of @foodiesinrome in collaboration with Forno, Campo de' Fiori. Thanks to @thebeehiverome & @personalitaly for curating the evening wonderfully and making it top notch! 😍🥂 @blogciaotutti @liviahengel @mycornerofitaly @dreameurotrip @italyalexandra055 @romewise @anastasiya_craze @alidifirenze @picnicman73 . . . #italophilia #italianfood #italygram  #iloveitalianfood #italiansdoitbetter #buongiornoroma #romanity #forno #whatitalyis #italianculture #italianlifestyle #margarita #cucinare #mangiare #verdure #italianfoodbloggers #framesofitaly #postcardsfromitaly #italianfood #ciboitaliano #igerslazio #pizzamaking #pizzatime #campodefiori #romeandyou #wheninrome #ig_rome

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Winter in Rome: At Forno with the Masterchefs

4. Hop on a Vespa with Scooteroma: Another interesting thing to do in Rome in Winter is to be your own versions of Audrey Hepburn (s) thanks to the Scooteroma. We zipped past the Colloseum to the Baths of Caracalla before making our way to see the historic Appian Way. Fewer crowds makes a better experience no??

Curated by Annie and Giovanni from Scooteroma and their super cool and funky team, the vespa tour is a great way to see the lesser known sides of Rome. It was like being with a local and chatting about Rome and everything in between while driving past ancient monuments and learning about the history. A special thanks to Michelle-my Roman vespista who helped me with my Italian during the ride. Grazie tanto!


Winter in Rome: Vespa Tour with Scooteroma


Winter in Rome: Us with the Scooteroma crew (Thanks for the pic Annie!)

5. Go for a Wine Tasting Session with Antiqua Tours: Sarah May Grunwald- the passionate wine sommelier and the face behind Antiqua Tours is another great way to see Rome in Winter. She gave us a fun wine tasting session and told us about the region of Lazio (where Rome is) and it’s underrated wines. I thoroughly enjoyed the session because though I like drinking wine, I don’t know much about them.

Sarah told us how Venetians spread the wines to the Black Sea, why there are bubbles in the wine, the history of the Etruscans and the different wines in the region. Loved the chat with Sarah and definitely want to meet her again for another tasting in Rome! Grazie Sarah!


Winter in Rome: Wine Tasting


Winter in Rome: Learning about wines from Lazio

Stay tuned for more on Winter in Rome. But in the meantime tell me, are you sold for a Winter in Rome??

Related Reading: Winter in Rome Where to Eat and Stay


Winter in Rome with The Beehive


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“Winter in Rome” is an annual Blogger Retreat and an excellent project by Linda and Steve of The Beehive, Rome. Bloggers come together and visit Rome in Winter with The Beehive. There are different activities and experiences planned by several local operators throughout the 4 day event.

So when Linda offered me to visit Rome in Winter, I jumped to the opportunity! I mean how often do we really go to see Rome in Winter??! Not only is this a fun way of seeing the city sans the crowds (if you compare to the summer) but also a great chance to see the rest of Italy for cheap! This year The Beehive along with Personalized Italy have brought together a great list of Collaborators and Bloggers for the event.

If you are on any of the social media platforms – Instagram, Twitter or Facebook, follow along and enjoy my #WinterinRome with The Beehive from January 18 – January 22. Here are some shots from #WinterInRome. Stay tuned for more!

Disclosure: There are “ affiliate links” on my blog. If you click on a picture, it will take you to and if you happen to purchase something through these links, I will receive a small commission (at no cost to you). Thanks for supporting Italophilia.

Most Instagram-able Spots in Rome


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This post is part of the monthly #DolceVitaBloggers series hosted by my lovely friends Italian at Heart, Questa Dolce Vita and MammaPrada. Every month, any blogger/vlogger who loves Italy or is Italian or simply wants to share their memories of Italy, writes on a particular topic as part of the linkup. This month’s topic is “Favorite Italian City” and needless to say mine is Rome. So here I am sharing about my favorite Instagram-able spots in the eternal city!


Most Instagrammable Spots in Rome

People on Instagram will agree how we are almost always obsessed to click a picture with the sole intention of posting it on Instagram. We want it to be perfect- the look, the dimensions, the presentation. I too am obsessed with Instagram (not as much as I used to be before because of the darn algorithm!) so a post like this was bound to happen. Enjoy Rome from the eyes of an Instagrammer and do give a follow if you are on Instagram!


ANYWHERE IN TRASTEVERE: Just walk around in the neighborhood of Trastevere and every alley has to be photographed for the app. Take a turn anywhere, you will be gaping at the raw beauty of this side of Rome. Don’t confuse yourself to be on a movie set….It’s only Trastevere! Every corner is imperfectly perfect and ready to be Instagramm’d.

Aperitivo hour 🍹 #LetsGetSocial

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#CurrentlyPlaying The Best of The Doors. What's on your playlist??

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Buongiorno!! I haven't posted doors in a long time 😄 #DoorsofItaly

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ANY PLACE WITH THE COLOSSEUM IN VIEW : This will never ever go wrong. Even if the picture was upside down and you were wearing the weirdest outfit, even if the picture was blurred or wrongly placed….. But as long as you have the Colosseum as your background, I’d guarantee that you’d get double the likes than you usually do! 😉 It is the best backdrop in Rome for just about anything!

There's nothing quite like standing here..Is there??

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~All roads lead to Rome~

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STREETS FROM ALTARE DELLA PATRIA TO CAMPO DE’ FIORI: Get a city map of Rome and the next time you visit, reach Altare della Patria and take a hundred shots of the area + Roman Forum. Then move towards Campo de’ Fiori- a leisurely 20 minute walk filled with hidden backstreets that have never been discovered (on Instagram I mean). Sheer delight! You will find yourself surrounded by artists and music players and will end up photographing them and the most unusual store fronts.

Finding inspiration in incredible Rome 😍🇮🇹 #TravelerinItaly

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-I recently read an article on travel jealously/envy and how social media is responsible for it. -While I agree with it to some extent, I think most of it is self made and is born out of insecurities. Everyone came to the world for themselves and we are all trying to do our own thing. So why so much jealousy in the first place? Figure your calling. Did you ever think to notice jealousy and comparisons lead nowhere. Also, what's stopping you from doing it?? Probably you.. yourself. Social media for me is about telling my best moments to the world because that's what I choose to. And even though there are lot of things that happen on the road, everything doesn't make a part of what I want to share. Remember that travel isn't just sitting on the beach, drinking cocktails and clicking Instagrammable pics 😉 neither is any other part of social media. There is much more to it! Just widen your mind and focus on yourself🍫🍷 (Sorry for the super long caption) 🙈🙈

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"Simplicity is the ultimate sophistication". 🚲

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VIA MARGUTTA: Remember Audrey Hepburn and Gregory Peck’s movie The Roman Holiday?? Of course you do! That made you want to ride in Rome on a vespa too, didn’t it?? Well parts of the movie are shot on the historic street called “Via Margutta”. Not only is it a photographer’s dream but it is not as crowded as the rest of the city!

There is a surprise at every corner of Rome🙃 #NGTIndia

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#StylingTheSeasons in Roma 🇮🇹🍃

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Ivy laden street and vintage interiors- I'm sold! 😎🍃

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EVERY PLACE IN ROME IS INSTAGRAM-ABLE: In my opinion, the whole of Rome is “Instagram-able”. Visit the famous sites early morning when the city is asleep and you will find not one but plenty of great Instagram-able spots. My favorites include The Pantheon and Castel Sant’Angelo. Then of course there is Trevi fountain where you have to get a picture clicked with yourself throwing a coin!

Love the enchanting Castle Sant'Angelo 😍 #RomeAndYou

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Meraviglioso! Marvelous!

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Disclosure: There are “ affiliate links” on my blog. If you click on a picture, it will take you to and if you happen to purchase something through these links, I will receive a small commission (at no cost to you). Thanks for supporting Italophilia.

Five Things to do in Turin (for free)


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I know I know, I have been raving about Turin. This city really has my heart. But wouldn’t you agree?? There is so much you can see and do here without the crazy crowds that I am almost okay to see that Turin is Italy’s underrated gem.

If you are on a budget and want to admire Turin without spending a Euro, here are some things to do in Turin for FREE:

  • Go back in Time: Visit Piazza Castello in the heart of Turin which is the living room of the city. Piazza Castello houses the two of the most important palaces of Reale and Madama. Visiting this piazza is like going back to the 15th century Turin. Get a gelato from La Romana and sit on any of the benches at the piazza. La Dolce Vita!

Free Things to do in Turin: Piazza Castello


Free Things to do in Turin: Piazza Castello

  • Admire the Valentino Park: Make a stop at Valentino Park (Parco del Valentino) and marvel at the architecture of the Borgo Medievale along with the Castle of Valentino (Castello del Valentino). The former is a “newly constructed medieval village” in the park while the latter is a French styled castle turned university that hosts events and exhibition for education. What a great thing to do in Turin for FREE!

Free Things to do in Turin: Castello del Valentino


Free Things to do in Turin: Valentino Park

  • Visit Grand Balôn : If you are a fan of all things vintage and antique, visit the Grand Balôn. This antique market has been around for years and takes place every second Saturday of the month. I timed my visit around a lot of events and Grand Balôn was one of them. It was so worth visiting although I suggest you to keep a few snacks handy to pass time.

Free Things to do in Turin: Grand Balôn


Free Things to do in Turin: Grand Balôn

  • See the city from Monte dei Cappuccini: If you are a sucker for views, you won’t regret this short walk from Turin’s Via Po to reach Monte dei Cappuccini. At this hill, visit Santa Maria del Monte – a church from the 16th century and then gawk at Turin’s ever stunning skyline. I hear it is unbelievable on a clear day because you can see the Alps! I love this part of seeing Turin for absolutely free!

Free Things to do in Turin: Monte dei Cappuccini


Free Things to do in Turin: Monte dei Cappuccini

  • Stop at a Historic Shop: It doesn’t cost a penny to go to a historic shop and look around. Learn more about Turin’s historic shops (and there are plenty) whether it is one of the oldest crystal maker – Prochet or Menietti- the oldest suppliers of brewing and wine making. It is fascinating to see these stores preserve the same method and process since decades.

Free Things to do in Turin: Stop at a Historic Shop


Free Things to do in Turin: Stop at a Historic Shop

Hope you enjoyed this post on free things to do in Turin. If you plan to visit Turin, I suggest you to read these books below:

Disclosure: There are “ affiliate links” on my blog. If you click on a picture, it will take you to and if you make a purchase through these links, I will receive a small commission (at no cost to you). Thanks for supporting my blog as always. Keep Reading!

Where to Eat and Drink in Turin


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Turin (Torino) is heaven for all the food enthusiasts and coffee lovers. There are several eating options available in the city right from quick cheap eats of pizza by the slice, focaccia or ciabatta to a more sophisticated dining experience of family run food joints, ornate coffee houses and high end expensive restaurants. Here’s a handy list of everything you would possibly need for your first few days in Turin.

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Where to Eat and Drink in Turin: Food Guide

Where to Eat and Drink in Turin:

Osteria in Vino Veritas: If you are looking for a range of Piemontese wines, cozy atmosphere and fresh agnolotti (typical pasta from the Piemonte region), head to Osteria In Vino Veritas (in wine there is truth). It not only stays true to its name but also has the most homely atmosphere just a little south of the famous landmarks of Mole Antonelliana.

Via Giulia di Barolo, 50/A.


Where to Eat and Drink in Turin: In Vino Veritas

Caffeteria Reale: Thanks to Lucia’s blog I found out about this Caffeteria which seems to be popular among locals. It was in a small alley next to the Reale Palace and had a great selection of coffees not to forget the range of china all across the room and embellished linen.

Piazzetta Reale, 1


Where to Eat and Drink in Turin: Caffeteria Reale

Baratti & Milano: Another great find thanks to Lisa from ItalianKiwi who not only recommended me some great places to visit but also sent an itinerary to see Turin. Baratti & Milano is one of those places that you should spend more time in. Their range of fancy wrapped chocolates and candies is amazing and is great to pick for gifts.

Piazza Castello, 27

In Turin, time has really stopped🌟☕

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Pastificio de Filippis: I went here just for a quick lunch but ended up staying longer. Bang in the middle of the busiest street, Pastificio de Filippis serves the yummiest gnocchetti that I paired it with a glass of Barolo and fresh salad.

Via Giuseppe Luigi Lagrange, 39


Where to Eat and Drink in Turin: Pastificio de Filippis

Arsenico e Vecchi Merletti: Another great spot away is Arsenico e Vecchi Merletti-a  quaint place from the crowds. Arsenico’s service is quick and the food is delicious. Try their gnocchi and fresh breads like I did. (Also, Arsenico e Vecchi Merletti is a movie name too)

Via Sant’Agostino, 30/a

Turin has by far some of the best food I've tasted in all of Italy! I ate the gnocchi with parmesan cream, mint and poppy seeds and on the other side was the Focaccia which was enjoyed by @turinepi 😍🍽️ The wine was Bonarda Piemontese. If you haven't read my love letter to Turin yet, do head to @turinepi 😎😊 #Italophilia . . . . . #gnocchi #foodiesofinstagram #italianfood #italygram #turinheart #torinodigitale #igerstorino #iloveitalianfood #italiansdoitbetter #cucina #cibobuono #cucinare #mangiare #onthetable #placesofturin #italyfood #dudeandthefood #pastalover #pastatime #iloveitaly #lovelettertoitaly #thekitchen #foodtalkindia #ilovepasta #piemonte #igerspiemonte #bonarda #focaccia #parmesan

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Pasticceria Gertosio: Another favorite because I went here thrice and tried a different pastry every time. The man behind the counter started recognizing me and every time I went he would say something like, “Dovrebbe provare qualcosa di nuova!” (You should try something new!) Pick anything!

Via Giuseppe Luigi Lagrange, 34


Where to Eat and Drink in Turin: Pasticceria Gertosio

Bar Abrate: Looking for a cool place to hang out?? Possibly with a street view of old trams and hustle of the city?? Consider going to Bar Abrate for a fabulous aperitivo experience. Love their elegant vibe and pastry selection too.

Via Po, 10

Caffè Fiorio: One of those “must try” family run places that is 3 centuries old. You should visit Fiorio only for its marble top tables and impeccably dressed waiters! Try their own selection of ice creams and bicerin. There is a Fiorio in the town of Alba as well.

Via Po, 8

Delper: Looking for fresh bread, pastries, focaccia, pizza, grissini?? Visit Delper, just around the corner at Via Garibaldi. It is packed with locals and why wouldn’t it be…. Delper has been serving since over 75 years. A great place for a quick bite.

Via Tolmino, 50

Apart from the places above, I recommend visiting any of the Gelaterie in the city. My favorites are La Romana and Gelateria Pepino.

Hope you enjoyed this post. If you plan to visit Turin and the region, consider staying at B&B Vibrisse Torino. Also, suggest you to read these great books:

Disclosure: There are “ affiliate links” on my blog. If you click on a picture, it will take you to and if you make a purchase through these links, I will receive a small commission (at no cost to you). Thanks for supporting my blog as always. Keep Reading!

Day Trips from Turin


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Do you love day trips where you can see major sights of a town/city and cross things off your bucket list??? I love them!

From Turin I made three such day trips that I recommend for a great respite from city life.


  • LAGO DI ORTA (Lake Orta): This was my favorite and most comfortable day trip from Turin. I drove with a friend to Orta- a lesser known lake of Italy. With exceptional restaurants and views, Orta is simply magical! Imagine yourself in idyllic medieval lane ways among baroque churches and ancient shops that make you stop for a picture every 5 seconds. If you are looking for a unique day trip in and around Turin, Orta should be on the top.



Bronze statue of an artist in love with Orta


The island of Orta San Giulio

Orta can be reached by car or public transport. Although the train station is a little far from the lake, one can hire a taxi or take a bus to get to the lake. There is another option of walking for about 25 minutes to reach to the lake too. Orta is also very close to Lake Maggiore- another great lake of Piemonte which also forms part of the region of Lombardy and parts of Switzerland.

  • ALBA: Another great day trip from Turin is to visit the town of Alba. Globally known for truffles, Alba is also famous for wine, cheese and it’s medieval historic centre. Every year the town hosts the White Truffle Fair in October- November which is the biggest global fair of it’s kind. There are markets of local products such as cheese, wine, chocolate, porcini, hazelnuts etc which makes it high on my list of events to visit.

Energy fix!


No tourists at 1 p.m.


Everyone’s gone for lunch

Reach Alba in the morning when the Bars were filled with locals and take a short walk in the centre. You will basically have it covered it in about 30 minutes flat. Finish off your day with a hearty lunch of local tajarin and be back in Turin for dinner. Trains run every hour.

  • BARBARESCO: Do you know the King of Wines comes from the region of Piemonte?? (Turin is the capital of Piemonte) Wouldn’t you love to see it?? Piemonte’s area of langhe is a great wine making commune. I was in Barbaresco for a short day trip, another great choice of day trip from Turin.

Not a soul in sight


Winery visit ✔


A drive through Piemonte

🍷🍷I was shown around Piemonte by the lovely @valeriekq who, along with her husband, takes wine and food tours in the region. We went to the winery of @cadelbaio -a family run business that is situated on a beautiful slope overlooking small hilltop towns. After trying 5 different types of wines this is the best picture I could manage 🤣🤣 @foodieandwinelover @constantwining @yogawinetravel @casamiaitalyfoodandwine @winefolly @vinotravels21 @italian_wines @italianwinelover . . – . . #italophilia #winestagram #wineoclock #winerytour #vineyardlife #whatiate #whatidrink #whatitalyis #ilovewine #italianwine #vinorosso #redredwine #amarone #barolo #langhe #suitcasetravels #ig_piemonte #ig_turin #turinheart #volgopiemonte #prettylittletrips #prettylittleitaly #italygram #framesofitaly #girlsgottadrink #girlsborntotravel #travellingthroughtheworld #trottermag

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Valerie Quintanilla, along with her husband, takes wine and food tours in the region and kindly showed me around the winery of Ca’ del BaioThe winery is a family run business situated on a beautiful slope overlooking the hills of Piemonte. After tasting 5 different types of wines I can safely say I am glad Valerie dropped me back to Alba!

For further reading on day trips, check out these Piemonte based blogs:

Villa della Regina by TexasMominTorino

5 Day trips from Turin by Turinepi

How to do a Barolo day trip from Turin by Valerie Quintanilla

Hope you enjoyed this post. If you plan to visit Turin and the region, I suggest you to read these great books:

Disclosure: There are “ affiliate links” on my blog. If you click on a picture, it will take you to and if you make a purchase through these links, I will receive a small commission (at no cost to you). Thanks for supporting my blog as always. Keep Reading!

Caffè al Bicerin dal 1763


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Want a little slice of heaven in Turin?? Consider having “Bicerin” from Caffè al Bicerin.


Caffè al Bicerin

What is Bicerin??

Bicerin is quite simply a drink of espresso, chocolate and cream. This sinful drink topped with a secret ingredient from Caffè al Bicerin is what makes it so special!

This drink was invented by Caffè al Bicerin centuries ago and has since then retained it’s recipe, style and production. The legacy is astounding!


Caffè al Bicerin

On my visit, I was transported to the old times inside an old cafe filled with wood panels, dimly lit candles and white marble table tops. I found myself on the same seat that years ago Italy’s first Prime Minister sat in. It was such a treat!

Accompanying me was Lucia of TurinEPI, a local from Turin who hosts weekend tours and Epicurean events in the city. Ever since she told me that the place is run by women since centuries, I feel that that is probably the secret of it being the best place for Bicerin in the world. What do you think?? 😉

Don’t miss visiting Caffè al Bicerin when you are in Turin and also check their specialty store next door where everything is filled with chocolate! Bicerin comes at a whooping €6 but it is really is worth every penny once in your life (okay more than once!).

Piazza della Consolata, 5


Disclosure: There are “ affiliate links” on my blog. If you click on a picture, it will take you to and if you happen to purchase something through these links, I will receive a small commission (at no cost to you). Thanks for supporting Italophilia! 🙂

10 Reasons to Add Turin to Your Italy List


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There’s more to Italy than just the big cities. Don’t me wrong, I love the modern side of Milan and the bohemian quarters of Rome but a traveler visiting just these cities in Italy is missing a lot. One needs to re-consider and explore the unconventional choices as well and maybe add a few days to make it to Turin (an hour from Milan)

While searching for new places to visit in Italy I found Turin (Torino in Italian) many years ago. However, I couldn’t visit it until this year when I found really cheap deals from Delhi to Rome and Milan via Kuwait Airways. I think that was what pushed me to book my tickets and start my love affair with Italy’s first capital Turin.

Here are my top 10 reasons to add Turin to your Italian Bucket List:

1–>NOT AS CROWDED AS THE BIG 3: Would you like a holiday away from the crowds and for a change not be pushed and shoved at?? Turin is your choice then! It is less crowded and quieter compared to the big 3 (Rome, Venice and Florence) and also more pleasant. I was in Turin in the peak season and could eat, drink and walk around without being shoved at. Exactly how a vacation should be! So visit Turin before the city gets run down by mass tourism.


2–>BICERIN BICERIN BICERIN: I cannot stress this fact enough….Turin=Bicerin and Bicerin=Turin. I refuse to have it anywhere else even if I am offered money! Until you haven’t had this heavenly drink, you won’t know what I’m saying… So go to Turin! And FYI Bicerin is a sinful combination of chocolate, espresso and milk with a touch of Turin magic!


3–>CINEMA MUSEUM, EYGPTIAN MUSEUM AND …A FIAT MUSEUM: Museum and history lovers rejoice! Turin is a haven for all of you. There is so much to see and do in Turin, that you might find time to be short. Apart from the amazing Cinema and Fiat museums, there are also stunning palaces of the Savoy Kings and Queens to be visited.


4–>EATALY: If you ever curious about an Italian food museum, don’t be now. There is one! And in my humble opinion, it’s called Eataly! You will find everything “Italian” under one roof. So imagine those tasty holiday treats that your Italian friends share or those vintage looking candy bars that you always wanted… Hunt no more… Consider going here with an empty stomach and a full credit limit! Don’t say I didn’t tell you.

Excuse me while I sit errr…. have a hot cup of Illy 😉☕

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5–>RIVER PO: Before visiting Turin, I thought the only thing missing in the city was the water…. I was wrong. The river Po flows through the city and makes everything look scenic and romantic as it divides Turin in two. In the evening when the city lights are up, the river gives a misty element and almost make a lovely painting.


“Senza l’Italia, Torino sarebbe più o meno la stessa. Ma senza Torino, l’Italia sarebbe molto diversa”- Umberto Eco

“Without Italy, Torino would be more or less the same, but without Torino, Italy would be very different”- Umberto Eco

6–>HISTORIC SHOPS AND APERITIVO: Vienna and Rome have been my top choices for cities with historic coffee shops. But now there’s one more to the list! Turin not only has excellent historic shops but also has the old fashioned vibe. Imagine furniture from the retro era and waiters serving in old bow ties….. In Turin time really stands still. The city is also the birthplace of Aperitivo. I’m not complaining. Are you??!

7–>GETAWAY TO THE COUNTRYSIDE: In about 30 minutes you can cross Turin’s elegant city life and head to the nearest vineyard or the prettiest side of the country! In about an hour’s drive you can reach the lakes of Maggiore and Orta that make for two stunning day trips. There’s a long list of historic towns such as Alba and Bra famous for truffles, wine and cheese. Mamma mia!


8–>PIAZZE AND PORTICOES: The piazze (public squares) in Turin don’t call for attention…They are elegant, chic and effortless. Add a little drama of art nouveau and baroque and that’s Turin for you. Since the city happens to be very spacious, you can possibly be the only one at a piazza even at 8-9 in the morning.

Oh Turin, you are so royal!😍

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9–>LITERARY LOVE: There is literature surrounding the whole city as writers such as Umberto Eco, Mark Twain, Primo Levi, Italo Calvino, Friedrich Nietzsche have visited and admired the city. It is a celebration of Italian literature to walk the same streets as the writers of the bygone eras. Additionally, Turin has some amazing bookshops. Being an avid reader and bookish traveler, I could not “not” visit Turin’s bookshops. There are plenty on Via Po. And oh did I mention the book fair Salone del Libro?? It happens in May every year!


10–>TRAMS: If historic stores and old world cafés aren’t enough for you, the city is also filled with vintage trams. There is a healthy mix of old and modern as a metro line connects the newer parts of the city. I, born an old soul, avoided the metro and loved hopping in different trams….Sometimes even without a reason.

So are you sold to visit Turin??

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Hope you enjoyed this post. If you plan to visit Turin and the region, I suggest you to read these great books:

Disclosure: There are “ affiliate links” on my blog. If you click on a picture, it will take you to and if you make a purchase through these links, I will receive a small commission (at no cost to you). Thanks for supporting my blog as always. Keep Reading!

From Murano to India with Ikroop


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Do you believe we are meant to meet people for a reason?? So far, in my life, many people have come and gone but there are some for whom I can vouch they came for a very solid reason. Today I will share this story about how I met Ikroop Dhillon -owner and curator of the Glass Art Jewellery brand Ikroop.

While browsing my Instagram feed one day, I came across an article that read how travels to Murano in Italy was a “life changing” event. This was an interview where Ikroop was talking about her glassware business for the Verve magazine. I was immediately enticed and soon contacted her.

Ikroop warmly asked to meet up for a cup of coffee and we chatted about her glass art jewellery and my love for all things Italian. Her story was so dreamy as most of her business inspiration comes from the island of Murano-renowed globally for its glassware.


Ikroop: I picked this for myself.

The best part is that her inspiration got the better of her when she decided to turn her love for glassware to a business! Most of her collection is inspired from her Murano travel where she saw beautiful art created from blown glass. She started the brand “Ikroop” after working with the famous glass artist Atul Bakshi. Once she gained knowledge of the process, she realized her forte and started making minimalist glass art jewellery. Her collection is versatile and classy, making it every woman’s dream!

There are various colours fused together to create every type of pendants, rings, earrings and neck pieces. I felt that there is something for everyone on her website and I myself picked up a beautiful pendant that can be worn for both any kind of event whether a party or a business meeting.

red pendent

Image Credits: Ikroop Dhillon


Image Credits: Ikroop Dhillon


The lovely Ikroop

Owning a glass jewellery isn’t common in India as opposed to Italy and many other European countries. However, I hope that with brands such as Ikroop it becomes part of every woman’s wardrobe. I would have never imagined I’d meet a fellow Italophilie living only 7 kms from my house and inspired from travels to Italy as I am!

Thank You Italy for another fabulous connection!

Follow Ikroop’s stunning collection on her Instagram or Facebook page. Also check these great books on Italy and Venice.

Wine Tasting Inside Piscine Romane


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The Piscine Romane or the Roman cisterns are located in the city of Fermo and form a huge underground archaeological complex. They are close to the main piazza and are built with mind blowing engineering details that makes it possible to use them even today. Thanks to the Mayor of Fermo, DiscoverMarche and the lovely hosts from Vigneti Santa Liberata, I was able not only to see the historic site but also have a specially curated wine tasting inside it.






With our wines in hind inside the cisterns, we walked inside the dimly lit area which is believed to be built around 1 century A.D. It is a commendable feat that these cisterns made thousands of years ago work even today! Can you imagine that even now they are in working condition and almost perfectly preserved??! I am unable to fathom the time, resources and brains gone into making them and having an underground method to provide water to the city till today.





What an experience!

Important Info:

-The entry to the Piscine Romane costs a mere € 6,50 which includes a guided tour along with entries to parts of Palazzo dei Priori, Teatro dell’Aquila and Scientific Museums of Villa Vitali.

-A jacket is highly recommended when visiting the complex as the underground is extremely cold.

-The Piscine Romane are one of the most intriguing places in Le Marche and one that should not be missed if you are crossing by or in Marche.

-For more information visit the town’s official page.

The Literary Town of Recanati


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Recanati in Le Marche is a literary town of/for/by the Italian poet Giacomo Leopardi. I say that not only because Leopardi was born here but also because he spent a majority part of his life writing poems inspired by the town. Even though Leopardi had a conflicting relationship with Recanati, one of his most famous poems L’Infinito” (The Infinite) was written from a solitary hill of this town. Now, a famous vantage point, the hill is called “Hill of the Infinite” and has views that go as far as the Sibillini Mountains.

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Hill of the Infinte


Piazza Leopardi


Palazzo Communale


Leopardi’s statue in the piazza

Giacomo Leopardi wrote many poems in his short lifetime of 38 years but there are a few that stand out. “A Silvia”, published in 1828, shows his sad and tumultuous life state as he describes a girl he is in love with. The girl lives opposite the piazza where Leopardi’s house is but he cannot win her as she is below his stature. Another popular poem “Il Sabato del Villaggio” (Saturday in the Village) describes the same piazza opposite his house and tells the tales of people who come and go.


Silvia’s house (Was her name really Silvia?)


Leopardi’s House a.k.a Palazzo Leopardi


The piazza dividing the two places


Leopardi’s Recanati


The town evokes sadness on a grey day


If this corner could talk….


and this one too..


Chiesa di San Vito

Recanati is a fascinating town that evoked a sense of sadness in me. Even as I write I remember the feeling of walking through the streets and thinking of the story of Leopardi.

In 2014, the popular film “Il Giovane Favoloso” (Leopardi) captured the essence of the poet. Ever since then, the town has been revamped and the streets are decorated with the poems of Leopardi at every bend. It gives Recanati a real picture of being called a Literary city.


I found the Italian of that era extremely difficult. The translations online helped but I don’t know what is really correct.

Giacomo Leopardi: 1798-1837

Disclosure: There are “ affiliate links” on my blog. If you click on a picture, it will take you to and if you purchase something through these links, I will receive a small commission (at no cost to you). Thanks for supporting my blog and keep reading Italophilia! 🙂

The Sleepy Little Town of Castelfidardo


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You know the Italian town that makes the best hand made Accordions?? It is Castelfidardo in Le Marche. I never knew about it until I went there this summer! However, Castelfidardo wasn’t really for me. It does not come in my “must see” sights of Le Marche and can easily be skipped.



Probably the rare time when I saw someone in the centre


There is an International Accordion Museum in Castelfidardo


The view from the main piazza


From my apartment

Accordions available for young and old on Amazon

The only good reason about going to Castelfidardo is its location- close to the sea and also other historic towns of Marche. Otherwise everything in this town is slow and practically closed. There is only one good Bar (usually not crowded) and a few odd shops selling goods such as the Accordion, books or quick service food.


I don’t remember reading the name of this Torre (Tower)




The quaintest corner


They were equally happy to get a picture clicked!


Nothing is open and it was 7 p.m.


There was a bookstore at the corner


On a clear day, you can see the sea

However, there is one place not to be missed while visiting Castelfidardo and that is one of the oldest bread shops in Le Marche! Just at the entrance of the town, this Panetteria Pizzeria is owned by the lady in the picture below who has been making fresh bread for the town since years. Even after her husband’s passing recently, she makes sure the business goes on every day and starts her work at 4 a.m in the morning.

Fresh bread from the oven and a pizza rossa for me please!


The owner of one of the oldest bread shops


Be sure to visit and say hello to the lady!