Detour | My Favourite Tuscany Towns and Villages

Tuscany Towns and Villages
Tuscany Towns and VillagesTuscany Towns and Villages

When you think of Tuscany, you likely conjure up images of never-ending vineyards, medieval towns, wine tastings and endless sunshine.  And you’d be right about all of those things.  Tuscany is one of those dreamy destinations where reality matches your imagination.

This was my third trip to Tuscany, and I was looking forward to revisiting some of my favourite Tuscany towns and villages as well as discovering new ones.  From exploring narrow, cobbled streets that wind through hilltop towns to tasting all sorts of gelato flavours at every stop we made.  And then there’s the local wine of course.

Below I’ve shared all the Tuscany Towns and Villages we visited on this particular trip….

Pisa

Everyone has heard of Pisa, the Tuscan city made famous by the Leaning Tower.   Pisa has often been one of those fly in or fly out points when I’ve been travelling around Italy, and therefore I’ve somehow managed to end up there three times.  Is it a destination place?  In my opinion, no.  However, if you find yourself passing through, it’s worth spending a day, or one night (no more) and ticking the Leaning Tower of Pisa off your bucket list.  It’s a very walkable city, with plenty of bars and restaurants dotted around, and if you love gelato, then I recommend trying the Meringue flavour at La Bottega del Gelato.

Certaldo

Certaldo is the cutest medieval walled town, that feels like a movie set when you walk around.  It’s hard to believe something so charming is a real life, working town.  We accessed the town via a gondola and spent a couple of hours walking around, taking in every inch of how sweet this hilltop spot is.   I’d recommending staying for lunch or dinner as there are plenty of gorgeous restaurants and cafes dotted around.

San Gimingano

San Gimignano is a must-see on nearly every Tuscan tourist’s list.  It therefore makes it almost impossible to find a parking space during the day!  Because of this very reason, we paid two evening visits to San Gimignano for their famous gelato.  It is a magical town, full of buzzing piazza’s, medieval towers, and narrow stone streets.  You’ll be spoilt for choice with restaurants there, but as I already mentioned, it’s the gelato everyone talks about.  Gelateria Dondoli is world famous due to its many awards, and therefore is a necessity to try right?  A highlight there was the gorgonzola gelato, who knew blue cheese ice cream could actually taste good!

Monteriggioni

Monteriggioni, is one of my favourite spots.  A completely walled medieval village located on top of a hill, it is tiny, and a lovely place to visit.  With a large piazza in the centre, the village is filled with cute coffee shops, lovely home decor stores, and restaurants.  The city walls and its 14 towers are still intact, you can even take a walk alongside them on a walkway.  The saying ‘good things come in small packages’ rings true for Monteriggioni.

Volterra

Volterra is a larger town, now made famous by the Twilight novels and movies.  I’ve been pre and post Twilight, and it was good to see that nothing had changed.  High up on a hilltop, you’ll find yourself wandering down alleyways and discovering piazzas at the end of them.  There are basilica’s, delicious deli’s, pretty shops, and plenty to see.  You can easily spend a day in Volterra walking inside the medieval walls.

Happy travels,

Annmaree x

Detour | Relaxing in Tuscany, Our Farmhouse Stay

Croce di Bibbiano

On my recent trip to Italy, the majority of the time was spent relaxing at a farmhouse in Tuscany.  We stayed in a gorgeous place, Croce di Bibbiano, in the Chianti region and it was every bit as dreamy as it sounds.

Choosing a place to stay wasn’t so dreamy.  There are so many options, from super cheap to ridiculously expensive, then you’ve got to decide which region of Tuscany you want to stay in, do you want your room to have a kitchen or not, is it close enough to some of the towns and villages you want to visit, etc etc.  The search began a couple of months before departure, and I would spend hours trawling the internet, only to find somewhere, enquire and then receive a reply that they were fully booked.  STRESSFUL FIRST WORLD PROBLEMS.  By a fantastic stroke of luck, Greg aka The Boy Next Door, came across Croce di Bibbiano on one of his searches, we enquired, and thankfully they had space, our farmhouse in Tuscany was finally booked.

As soon as we pulled into the long cyprus tree lined driveway leading down to the farmhouse, we knew this place was going to be great.  And we were absolutely right.  We were greeted with a warm welcome from the coolest of couples, Esther and Federico, who run the farmhouse.  They showed us to our room, and it was gorgeous!  Our room was very large, with a rustic, farmhouse feel, complete with a bed, sofa, desk, and wardrobe, and a good sized bathroom too.  It was everything we had hoped for and more.

Dropping our bags and wandering around Croce di Bibbiano, we knew we were in for a week of relaxation.  It’s located on a hilltop that looks over the vineyards and out towards San Gimignano, one of my favourite Tuscan towns.  The large pool is lined with plenty of sun loungers, and we often sat poolside to watch the sun go down in the evening, whilst sipping on local wine.

The restaurant is gorgeous.  We dined al fresco, and for the gluten intolerant and coeliac’s amongst us, I cannot sing Croce di Bibbiano’s praises enough.  They go to extreme lengths to make sure you are able to enjoy a lovely gluten free dinner.  The same happens at breakfast each morning, where Esther would bring me my very own plate of meats and cheeses, yoghurts and gluten free cakes.  I love Italy for this, there is no country in the world that caters to us gluten intolerant lot more!

We were lucky to be staying in one evening when Esther and Federico hosted a tomato festival, inviting guests and locals to enjoy everything from bloody mary’s, to tomato salad to tomato sorbet (surprisingly good!), outside on the lawn.  All for ten euro’s.  It was amazing, with everyone milling about, enjoying wine and the never-ending tomato themed buffet.

Our time at this amazing Tuscan farmhouse ended all too soon, but we enjoyed every single minute of our stay there and cannot recommend this place enough.  If you’re looking for pure relaxation, and a location that is in close proximity to some of Tuscany’s bests towns and villages, Croce di Bibbiano is the perfect spot.  I cannot wait to return here for another vacation!

Thank you Esther and Federico for making our vacation so wonderful.  We enjoyed everything from breakfast, to the pool, to our conversations with you both!  You are wonderful hosts.

Annmaree x

Detour | Cinque Terre, Italy

I’d been thinking about it for so long, years in fact.  A return trip to Cinque Terre.  Having visited around 13 years ago, I always had that itch to experience this stunning coastal area of Italy again, to walk the trails between the villages and swim in the turquoise water.

So I made it happen.  I researched, booked flights, planned train journeys and chose our Airbnb.  For those that haven’t heard of the Cinque Terre, the Italian to English translation is ‘Five Lands’, and this is made up of five small villages of Riomaggiore, Manarola, Corniglia, Vernazza and Monterosso located on the west coast of Italy. They are also listed on the UNESCO World Heritage List.  In a nutshell, it’s definitely one for the travel bucket list.

Having stayed in Monterosso on my first visit to Cinque Terre, I decided to try somewhere new, and settled on an Airbnb in Vernazza.  It was perfect.  Vernazza is such a beautiful little village, full of life and colour.  Our accommodation was located on the ‘main street’ – think busy walking path between the train station and the sea, not a road with cars.  It was a lovely place to stay and I highly recommend it, find the listing here.  We booked for two nights, flying into Pisa, then taking a train to Vernazza via La Spezia.  It’s all very straight forward, and train tickets don’t need to be bought ahead of time.

Arriving late on a Friday evening, due to high winds in Pisa and therefore three hour delays leaving the UK, we still managed to drag ourselves out of bed on Saturday morning, wake up with coffee and start our journey on the walking trail towards Corniglia.  The walking trails vary from flat and easy, to uphill stairs that you’ll curse at and swear you’ll never reach the end of.  It’s about taking things at your own pace, so if you’re about easy and breezy, I suggest never coming on a walking trail with us two psycho’s, who walk at the speed of a slow jog.  I think it’s the Londoner in us!  The views you’ll witness are breathtaking, and worth those stair climbs I promise!

The walking trails from Corniglia to Manarola, and then on to Riomaggiore were closed when we visited, so after exploring Corniglia, we jumped on the train to Manarola for a wander around, followed by another train all the way back to Monterosso, the most northern of the five villages.  Monterosso is also the largest village, and the beach is literally packed with sun umbrellas and people.  It’s a beautiful place though, and there’s plenty of restaurants and shops to explore too.

We had one more walking trail to complete, the biggest of all, from Monterosso back to Vernazza.  Gelato was consumed, all in the name of energy (and morale) boosting, and then we set off.  The walking time said around 2.5 hrs, but we managed it in a little over an hour, like I said, we don’t do leisurely strolling!  This walk starts out with a cruel amount of stairs that you must ascend to get on to the trail up high in the mountains.  It is a little brutal, but you’ll have a laugh with other tourists as you’re bent over trying to catch your breath every couple of minutes.

Once you’re up high in the mountains, the brutal parts are few and far between, and it’s a really enjoyable walk, particularly when you finally catch a glimpse of Vernazza from way up high.  It’s a beautiful, colourful sight to see, and the best part of all that hard work walking?  You’re in Italy, so you can reward yourself with pizza and an Aperol Spritz that evening!

On the Sunday morning, we woke very early, and walked back up the hill to the view point over Vernazza.  We may have climbed over a fence that had been built to keep tourists away from the very thing we were there to do, snap some photos of Vernazza from a birds eye view.  Hence the getting up early, before anyone could tell us off.  I take no responsibility for anyone reading this and doing the same thing, the risk is yours!  (It was totally worth it though hah!).

Packing our bags and dropping them off at the train station storage facility, we took a train to Riomaggiore, to explore some more.  We ate our daily store bought lunch of prosciutto, cheese, crackers and tomatoes, and then returned to Vernazza to collect our bags.   As I sat down in my Pisa bound train seat, and the train chugged along the coastline, I felt so pleased I’d returned to this magical place.  It’s a must-see, so do yourself a favour and go!

Annmaree x

Eat | Brunch at Where The Pancakes Are

Where The Pancakes Are

Love Pancakes?  Living in or visiting London?  Then you must head to where the pancakes are in Flat Iron Square.  It was my second visit, when we went for my birthday brunch on August’s Bank Holiday Saturday, and I was so looking forward to it.  I absolutely love pancakes, and the fact that where the pancakes are cater to us gluten free lot (and vegans too!), means I can indulge just like everyone else.

The restaurant itself is beautifully interior decorated, with indoor and outdoor seating.  On this occasion, we decided to sit inside, where I had a view of the chef’s working flat out, creating stacks of delicious pancakes, both sweet and savoury for the diners.

Between four of us eating, two of us settled on the Hummingbird Pancakes with cinnamon poached pineapple, greek cream , lime syrup & zest, pomegranate and toasted coconut and the other two ordered the American Pancakes with smoked streaky bacon, blueberries and maple syrup.  Two orders of gluten free pancakes, two orders of regular pancakes, four happy customers.

From coffee, to green juice, to Aperol spritz, the drinks menu is extensive too.  We stuck with green juice and coffee on this particular visit, the perfect accompaniments for brunch.

It’s a great spot for breakfast, brunch or lunch, because pancakes are definitely a perfectly acceptable meal any time of the day!  With fabulously friendly staff, and mouthwatering food, it’s definitely one to add to your London foodie list.

where the pancakes are….
Arch 35a
85a Southwark Bridge Road,
London SE1 0NQ
0207 407 8408

Birthday Balloons… Another Year Older

birthday
birthday

And just like that, I’m another year older.  39 in fact!  My 12 year old self wouldn’t have been able to comprehend that I’d ever reach such an age.  But alas, here I am, turning 39 years old on August 26th.

Do I feel older?  Do I feel different?  Am I upset to be 39?  No, no and no.  Shit happens.  And I feel better than I did 10 years ago, so there’s that.  I believe as long as you look after yourself, eat well, exercise and laugh a lot, age is just a number, and you’ll always feel young!

I had a lovely birthday, starting with lots of presents, followed by brunch at Where The Pancakes Are.  My parents are in town, so after brunch we took them around one of my favourite foodie markets at Maltby Street, before heading back home to change and make our way to my favourite bar in London, Frank’s, in Peckham.

We arrived at Franks with fingers crossed behind our backs, as the day was sunny and hot (a miracle!), and that usually means a very long line snaking around the Bussey Building to get up to the rooftop bar.  Luck was on our side, and we swanned straight in, ordered drinks and sat down under the scorching sunshine, sipping rose, and gazing at London’s skyline.  More drinks followed at another of my favourite bars, Bar Story, before we wandered along to Pedler for dinner, another London spot I absolutely love.

Before I knew it, the day was over, I was well and truly 39, and life moved on.  Thank you to everyone who sent online messages, gifts, texts and cards, I treasured every single one of those moments.

I’m another year older.  And I’m totally okay with that!

Annmaree x

(Outfit details: Polka Dot top from H&M, Yellow Skirt from Zara, Blue linen wrap dress from Tobi, White shoes from Zara Kids, Black jumpsuit from New Look)

birthday

birthday

Detour | Relaxing Under the Tuscan Sun(set)

Poolside in Tuscany

Poolside in Tuscany

Poolside in Tuscany

Under the Tuscan Sun

Tuscany sunset

Poolside in Tuscany

Poolside in Tuscany

Aperol Spritz

Poolside in Tuscany

Poolside in Tuscany

Under the Tuscan Sun

Hello everyone! I hope you’re all having a good week wherever you are and whatever you’re doing.  I can’t believe my trip to Italy is over already, and I’m back in London.  

I had a lovely ten days in Italy, and I’ll write a bunch more about it soon.   My parents arrive from New Zealand tomorrow, so I thought I’d kick start the first Italy post today before I get sidetracked being official tour guide to my mum and dad.

We saw so much on this trip, Cinque Terre, Pisa, Tuscan villages and Florence.  There were moments of non-stop moving from A to B and other moments of stillness and relaxation.  I had planned our trip this way to take advantage of seeing as much as we could with the time that we had, hence the multiple destinations.

I’d been feeling pretty exhausted before leaving for Italy, it’s in my nature to have a constant overflowing to-do list, both work and personal related.  I rarely relax and just watch a tv show, or read a book.  I’m always thinking, over-thinking, planning, rushing between jobs and starting little personal projects, which by the end of some days, I’m so wired come bedtime that I don’t even have a restful sleep.

By the time we were a couple of days into our Italy trip, the busiest part of the itinerary, I could feel my all too familiar anxiety rising, which had me stressing about things that didn’t need to be stressed about.  Easier said than done when you’re in the throes of anxiety.

When we arrived at our gorgeous farmhouse accommodation, Croce di Bibbiano, near San Gimignano, I was all out of energy and rational thinking (anyone want to come on vacation with me? Hah!).   I discovered the best thing I could do was to let go of what I thought we ‘should’ do, and what we ‘needed’ to tick off our vacation to-do list.  Instead I accepted that it was okay to just do nothing.  What a concept!  Not one that comes naturally to me, but boy did it feel good when I allowed myself to relax under the Tuscan sun.

Looking back on my vacation, I realise my favourite moments were sitting poolside, in the early evening, when it was still warm enough to lounge around in a bikini.  The sun would be setting behind San Gimignano in the distance, and the other guests would have departed for dinner.  There was silence, a sense of calm, a beautiful Tuscan sunset to gaze out at, and usually a glass of rosé to sip on.

I’d no idea that the quiet, still moments in Tuscany would be my favourite memories.  I thought I’d feel complete seeing as many places as I could possibly squeeze into our day.  How wrong I was.  That’s not to say I didn’t love our little road trips, and the gallons of gelato I ate around Italy, but learning to stop, and not feel guilty for doing so, was a huge lesson learned and one I’ll try to keep in mind for future vacations.

I’m already dreaming of stillness under the Tuscan sun on a future trip, sitting poolside, soaking up the Italian rays, and doing absolutely nothing.  Who knew doing nothing could be so fulfilling.

Annmaree x

(Outfit details: Pineapple Bikini from Shein, White Romper Playsuit from Tobi, Necklace and Bracelet from Eden Zoe, Boater Hat from eBay, White Embroidered Dress from Primark).

Under the Tuscan Sun

Poolside in Tuscany

Under the Tuscan Sun

Tuscany Sunset

Under the Tuscan Sun

Poolside in Tuscany

San Gimignano sunset

Detour | Time Out in France

Countryside France

London life can be utterly exhausting.  And lately, I’d felt exactly that.  Exhausted.  Rushing between my various jobs, and keeping up with my personal commitments and projects had me feeling overwhelmed and anxious.  I’d already said no to a wonderful invitation to spend four days in France at my friends country house, trying to be a financially responsible adult and all that.  Yet here I was, sat on a bus one afternoon feeling completely frazzled, and I suddenly thought ‘maybe I should go to France’.  Two hours later, I booked my flight, and four days after that I was standing in Pret at Heathrow Airport, ordering coffee because our flight was super early in the morning, and subsequently spilling half of it down my top as we saw the final boarding call for our plane, and had to make a dash towards our gate.

Less than two hours later, we were in our hire car and on our way to what has become to me, my own little rehab in the French countryside.  It’s my third visit to my friends gorgeous countryside home, 1.5 hours from Lyon, and it’s quickly becoming a place that I know I’ll arrive at and all the worries of the world will leave me.  My shoulders will feel lighter, and I will be able to do the unthinkable and re-laaaaax.

We spent four perfect days in France, and even though the weather didn’t play ball the whole time, we still managed to sunbathe, swim, drink rosé by the pool, and take walks in the countryside.  When the rain and thunder arrived, which it usually did in the afternoon, we’d take a drive to the supermarket, stocking up on every flavour of Lindt chocolate that doesn’t exist in the UK, and more rosé.  The evening was spent eating around the dining table together, sharing stories, and laughing a whole lot.  Other evenings we’d retreat to the upstairs snug, laying out in a total sloth like fashion on the huuuuuge sofa’s and watch comedy shows together.  There was no need to rush and sightsee, this perfect little piece of France was enough.

I was so glad I took the plunge and booked my ticket last minute, so I could forget about work, forget about everything on my to-do list, and just live happily in the moment with my darling friends.

Thank you to my wonderful friend for always welcoming me to your piece of perfection in France! x 

Eat | Frosé Recipe: How to make a frozen rosé cocktail

Frosé

Frosé

As I wrote this post last week, I remember glancing at the weather forecast for London on my BBC weather app, and it showed a high of 19c, with an even worse outcome the following day, a high of 17c!  It’s not exactly what you’d expect during summer.  What happened to those super hot June and July days where we kept hitting the 30’s and we all moaned about how hot and sweaty it was on the London Underground?  I remember uttering the words ‘I hate to say it, but I’m actually too hot’.  I take it back!  I want to be too hot again, and feel like I’m melting, so I can look back at summer 2017 and say ‘wasn’t it amazing!?’.  But let’s be honest, London’s summer hasn’t been amazing since around 2004, so I’m not holding out much hope for a sudden change in Mother Nature’s mood.

Nevertheless, I still insist on sitting outside in our courtyard for Sunday evening dinner, even if I do have to wrap a blanket around me.  I try to take long walks in the beautiful London parks, making sure not to wear white shoes in case I step in any muddy puddles, from the too constant rain.  And I make Frosé.  The frozen rosé cocktail that just screams summer.  It’s the adult equivalent of a slurpee/slushy/whatever you call your favourite childhood icy drink.  One sip and it tastes like the sun is shining (a few glasses in and you’ll likely not care what season it is!).

FroséFrosé takes a little bit of prep, but it’s all very straightforward and as long as you have some sort of blender or food processor (I use a Nutribullet), you’re good to go!  You’ll need to purchase a really full-bodied, dark coloured rosé, as it loses its flavour when it’s frozen.  You’ll also need some white sugar, strawberries and lemons, and that is it!  Oh except for the tortilla’s and guac that are essential to snack on whilst knocking back sipping on your Frosé cocktail.

Happy ‘Summer’ everyone x

Frosé

Eat | Frosé Recipe: How to make a frozen rosé cocktail
Serves: 4-6 servings
 
Ingredients
  • 1 750 ml bottle rosé (such as a Pinot Noir or Merlot rosé - the darker the better
  • 112g caster sugar
  • 230g strawberries, hulled and quartered
  • 70ml freshly squeezed lemon juice
Instructions
  1. Pour the rosé into a 13x9 inch pan (or a bowl if you don't have a pan) and freeze for at least 6 hours, or until almost solid.
  2. Put the sugar and 120ml water in a medium sized saucepan and bring to a boil, stirring constantly, until the sugar dissolves
  3. Remove from the heat and add the strawberries to the saucepan, letting them sit for 30 minutes to infuse the syrup.
  4. Strain the syrup and strawberries through a sieve into a small bowl, making sure not to press on the strawberries. Cover and chill until cold.
  5. Scrape your frozen rosé into a blender. Add the lemon juice, 100ml of the strawberry syrup, and 1 cup of crushed ice, then blend until smooth.
  6. Transfer the blender jar to the freezer and freeze until the frosé has thickened to a milkshake consistency.
  7. Blend again until the frosé looks like a slushy/slurpee.
  8. Grab a straw and sip!

 

Frosé

Detour | Ciao I’m Off to Italy

Ciao Italy

Ciao Italy

Ciao Ragazzi!  I’m finally sat on a train in the direction of Gatwick Airport, hooray!  My flight to Italy leaves in a couple of hours and by 7pm this evening I will be walking the beautiful streets of Vernazza in the Cinque Terre.

I have been much less organised for this trip than I usually am for a summer vacation.  I’ve not bothered with a manicure, pedicure, or eyebrow and eyelash tinting.  My usual essential beauty treatments before I head abroad.  I’ve truly not had time.  My packing for a trip usually starts a good few days before departure, but not this time.  I found myself manically laying clothes out on our bed last night, and having to make some very quick decisions on what was going in my bag, and what was staying behind.

Ciao Italy

I have to say, I’m unbelievably proud at how light my bag feels compared to previous trips to Italy!  I tried my best to pick items from my wardrobe that are summery and light, therefore taking up minimal space.  I have just ONE cardigan to keep me warm in case the unthinkable happens and there’s an actual cool breeze in Italy (I’ve seen the weather forecast, and it’s highly unlikely!).

I packed a few new pieces, including these super cute Tobi shorts (pictured and direct link here), that can be dressed up or dress down.  Some favourite toiletries have been thrown in too – here’s looking at you Aesop and Jo Malone, and of course a Conde Nast Traveller mag to read on the plane and inspire me with more future travel ideas.

I cannot wait to touch down in Italy this afternoon, my favourite European country.  And of course, I will keep you up-to-date on my adventures over on Instagram whilst I’m there.

Have a good weekend everyone,

Arrivederci x

Ciao Italy

(Cos bikini and Accessorize sunglasses, flip flops in top picture by Adidas)

Detour | Four Days in Lake Como

Lake Como

2017 has definitely been a year of travelling to beautiful destinations so far.  It was a goal of mine this year, to take an opportunity when it arose.  So far I’m succeeding I think!  The Boy Next Door and I had planned to go to Morocco, but changed our mind at the last minute and settled on Lake Como.  Now some of you know, that I’ve been to Lake Como before, for a work trip, back in 2010, where I spent five days in disbelief at that famous villa on the lake, Villa Oleandra, sipping coffee with George Clooney.  No I’m not kidding, you can read about it here.

Whilst that trip was one of the most epic moments of my life, I felt I needed to return to Como, as I hadn’t seen anything of it, except George’s stunning villa, the pool, and a short boat trip to get gelato with Uma Thurman.  Yup.  True story.

I was desperate to return to Lake Como and see it through the eyes of a tourist.  Taking in the breathtaking scenery, and eating my weight in pizza and gelato.  So we booked, and found a lovely, affordable hotel right on the lake, Hotel Fioroni for those interested, which is a rarity as most lakeside accommodation is the type that would bankrupt you.

We landed in Milan on a Friday morning, collected our car and head towards Lake Como.  As we approached the mountains that surround the lake, I remember the scenery taking my breath away, even though I’d seen it before.  It is a place of true beauty.  It looks like a scene from Jurassic Park, and in that moment I was so happy that we’d decided to book this trip and really get to know the area.

The weather over the four days we were there was hot, sunny and utterly perfect.  The water temperature of the lake was above average for that time of year too.  We swam each day, right next to George’s villa, with absolutely no tourists, who knew no better than to drive past with their camera poised to get a shot of his villa’s wall.  And here I was glancing up at the window I’d once peered out of back in 2010, soaking in that memory whilst creating new ones as I paddled in the heavy, salt free lake.

We ate gelato once, if not twice a day, trying as many flavours as possible, but always coming back to our favourite, cherry for TBND, and Nutella for myself.  We visited Villa Carlotta which was unbelievably beautiful, and took a ferry over to Bellagio, navigating our way amongst the tourists.

Finding a grassy lido, recommended by our hotel, became a favourite spot to take in the afternoon sun, laying back on our beach towels, sipping an Aperol Spritz, and descending the stairs to the lake for a quick dip.

I have to be honest, Lake Como doesn’t compare to my absolute favourite place in Italy, Amalfi Coast.  I mean, nothing can beat that for me.  But did I enjoy my four days?  Absolutely.  Would I return?  Yes, probably with a group of friends, where I’d book a lakeside villa, stocking the kitchen with good food and Italian wine.

Lake Como is a truly magnificent place, one that everyone should put on their bucket list.  There’s the villa’s that will make you take a lottery ticket in the hopes you can purchase one, the caprese salads and the scenery that will blow your mind.  So book, go, I mean why not right?!