Seven Apps to tackle inflight boredom

After a long flight, the soft hills of Pisa beckon, a glass of wine, a villa terrace.

Found this great article in USA Today – as you know travel these days can get awfully long – especially if you ended up in a seat where the inflight entertainment may not be working (happens more often than you think). Be prepared – read the following and get ready before you leave. Carina of found that the TED talks provided hours of interesting entertainment.

Read on….Seema Dhawan, Special for USA TODAY -

The only thing that makes getting the middle seat on a long flight worse is the realization that the article you were reading has refreshed on your device, promising hours of Internet-less boredom. A long flight can be an entertaining experience with the right apps; they can transform a boring seven-hour journey into an afternoon of good reading, brainstorming, productivity or entertainment. Download these free apps before you’re off on your next trip to avoid begging the flight tracker to get you there faster. Continue reading

Italy – great new book highlights food, farms and markets in a delightful valley in Umbria

Cooking and food in Umbria Do you love Italian food? Would you like to take a cooking class in your villa in Italy? I would love to introduce you all to Elizabeth… I first met Elizabeth when she and her then business partner came to cook at one of our villas in Italy, together they performed, created, cajoled, sang all while teaching us about the wild herbs from the hillside, how to stuff and roast, duck, quail, chicken on a spit in the open kitchen fireplace, how to fill fresh mozzarella bites with homemade fruit mostarda, all accompanied by a ‘few’ glasses of wine.

Dinner on an open fire – Chicken, Quail, turning on a spit in our kitchen fireplace

Her cooking classes in our villas became a ‘must do’ for all our clients, as one lawyer friend who was most reluctant to subject his wife and daughters to a cooking class before leaving for his trip ( as we planned it together), came home a few weeks later from Italy, he phoned me up and said “you know about that cooking class? ( I waited for the shoe to drop), he said…”well it should be mandatory!, it was an amazing experience”… Now Elizabeth has published a book about the food and farmers of this lovely area of Umbria.

Sustenance: Food Traditions in Italy’s Heartland -A new guide to farms, markets, and fairs in the Upper Tiber Valley Continue reading

Cinque Terre – some ideas, things to see and do in Cinque terre

The Telegraph, a great UK based newspaper often has some very good, interesting Travel articles – some ideas for Cinque Terre and the area surrounding La Spezia – should you happen to arrive by cruise ship are provided here – Cinque Terre and Surrounding areas (#cinqueterre)

Vernazza - Cinque terre

Cinque Terre – sun umbrellas in Vernazza

What to do

The classic CinqueTerre activity – and the reason so many visitors come here, even out of season – is the walk along the coast path that connects the five villages (if you’re feeling ambitious, you can extend it as far as La Spezia to the east or Levanto to the west). Continue reading

Italy’s Romance Hotspots…a few alternatives

Found a great article today about some lovely locations in Italy – are you looking for some romance during your trip to Italy, what about Juliet’s balcony in Verona? or a gondola ride in Venice, or standing at the edge of the Trevi fountain on a moonlit evening in Rome…that’s Amore!  read more in this Lonely Planet article republished by Frommer’s – Alternatives to Italy’s romance hotspots

Consider renting an apartment in Rome or Venice, perhaps a charming B&B in Verona?