After zipping up the luggage, obsessively checking and rechecking appliances, doors and windows and catching our first flight from St. Louis to Chicago, we boarded our 9 hour flight to Rome. Upon arrival, we shifted into true transportation mode, taking the Leonardo Express local train to Rome Termini where we caught a second train to Santa Maria Novella train station in Florence. In Florence, we took a cab to the airport to pick up our beyond tiny and extremely under powered Fiat 500 (more to come on its vices and virtues later in the week). One painfully expensive wrong turn on the Autostrada A1 later, we were finally on the last leg of our lengthy journey to Greve in Chianti, Tuscany. Despite being drowsy, hungry and frustrated with the Italian highway system, the Tuscan view out the window as we sped away from Florence was the perfect reward to our almost 24 hours straight of travel.
June 27-July 2: Chianti Country Charm
I've never been so in love with a vacation location. Seriously. I knew it would be good but never expected this level of sheer admiration. Days were spent enjoying time with family (we stayed in a fantastic villa with my cousins from New Jersey), driving the Chiantigana, visiting nearby hill towns (more to come about specific locales), eating extraordinary local food and drinking famous Chianti Classico wine every chance I got. (I could devote a week's worth of posts to this beautiful burgundy beverage.)
July 2- July 4: Roving About Rome
We were typical tourists, but active ones. After being pushed, shoved and stepped on by the flag/flower/ridiculous hat following tour groups at the Vatican Museums, we ventured out on foot for day 2. Walking from the Vatican area to Piazza Navona, the Pantheon, Trevi Fountain, the Colosseum, back up to the Spanish Steps, down Via Condotti, we made it back over to Ponte Sant'Angelo area in time for dinner. Legs thoroughly stretched, we left Rome by car for southern Italy on the 4th of July.
|And one more of us, in Rome|
Pompeii wowed us, an accidental drive through Naples shocked us and Positano welcomed us with warm Italian arms. A world away from Rome, we settled into a leisurely lifestyle amongst the steep hills, hidden beaches and stellar views of the Amalfi Coast.
After hauling our growing luggage collection through Sorrento, and arriving by Hydrofoil to the island of Capri, Casa Mariontonia appeared as a stylish, lemon-scented paradise. A private boat ride, some shopping and a very special ceremony capped off our Capri time.
July 9: Rome, Again
Arriving by train from Naples for our last day in Italy was beyond bittersweet. Walking shoes reinstated, we wandered from our hotel near Termini to Galleria Borghese to Trevi Fountain, proving that the coin toss tradition really does work.
July 10: Home, Again
A wonderful whirlwind came to an end, until the next trip.
Another Italy trip recap next week. More tomorrow and thanks for reading!