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An insider travel guide: travelling with children

posted by Home In Italy on November 24th, 2017

Be it a child-friendly city or a well equipped seaside destination, Italy spoils families with its rich mix of historical sights, wide portfolio of outdoor activities and amazing natural landscapes. An insider suggestion: to get the most out of exploring as a family, do plan ahead!

Best regions for kids:

Rome
: ancient Roman ruins and world-class museums make Rome an interesting destination for older children.

Amalfi coast
: a winning choice for every age. Subterranean ruins in Naples, gladiator battlefields in Pompeii and Herculaneum, and natural jewels like volcanoes, thermal pools and coastal caves.

Puglia
: beautiful seaside towns and an unembellished cuisine most kids love.

Sicily
: volcano climbing for sporty teens and beachside fun for sand-loving tots, alongside ancient ruins, hilltop castles and traditional 18th-century puppet theatre to inspire and entertain all ages.

Sardinia
: alfresco paradise overflowing with dazzling beaches, water-sports action, horse riding and scenic hikes suitable for all ages and abilities.

Italy for Kids

Family travellers can be divided into urban and rural. Cities in Italy are second to none in extraordinary sights and experiences, and with the aid of smart-phone apps and some inventive guided tours, parents can find kid-appeal in almost every museum and monument.

Away from urban areas, families can enjoy sandcastles, sea swimming and easy beachside ambles in the coastal destinations (beach-rich Puglia, the Amalfi Coast, Sardinia and Sicily sizzle with family fun on and off the sand), while interesting farm tours and outdoor activities will make the countryside an appealing family location (Tuscany and Umbria do offer many options for travellers willing to entertain children).

Villa Ada, a child friendly luxury villa in Umbria can be booked through Home in Italy

Accommodation

Staying in a private countryside villa is perfect for families: think self-catering facilities, mountains of green space to play around in and stacks of outdoor activities (swimming, tennis, horse-riding and mountain biking). In southern Italy, kids enjoy accommodation in circular, whitewashed trulli and quiet and luxurious masserias.

When to Go

Travelling in Italy with children involves little extra pre-departure planning. Your most important decisions will be about which region to pick and when to visit (perhaps timing your Italian holiday with one of the country’s vibrant kid-appealing festivals such as Siena’s famous Palio carnival in Venice or Florence’s Easter-time Scoppio del Carro. Beware July and August when the country broils and gets super crowded!

It’s winter time … and time to explore Italy!

posted by Home In Italy on November 22nd, 2017

For those who do not mind low temperature, winter can be a great time to discover Italy! Fewer tourists, less crowded museums and shorter lines: during this season, opera, symphony and theaters are in full swing, meaning lots of opportunities for visitors. So take a sweater, a rain jacket, wear a scarf and a winter hat and enjoy your holiday!

Why travel to Italy in winter time?
Here are just a few of the reasons why it’s worth making a trip during the tourist low-season in Italy. First of all, it will be much less crowded at some of the most popular and historic spots than it is during summer time. Secondly, you will find good prices on airfares to almost all Italian airport.

Winter weather in Italy ranges from relatively mild along the coasts of Sardinia, Sicily and the southern mainland to very cold and snowy inland, especially in the northern mountains. Even popular tourist destinations like Venice, Florence, and the hill towns of Tuscany and Umbria can get a dusting of snow in winter.

Winter is a good time for cultural events and performances in Italy’s elegant historic theaters. Naples is one of the top cities for Christmas nativities and many people visit Rome for the midnight mass on Christmas Eve. Early winter sunsets mean more time to enjoy cities after dark. Many cities light their historic monuments at night so strolling through a city after dark can be beautiful and romantic.

There’s a lot to do on a winter vacation in Italy!
When winter comes around and the crowds die down there are some truly extraordinary things you can see and do.
Spending winter in Italy may not be something you’ve previously considered, but the country is just as spectacular at this time of year as it is over summer. So, take a look at some of the wonderful events and experiences you can attend, making your winter break to Italy unforgettable.

Take a cooking class: Italy is famous for its delicious food and fine wine, and taking an authentic cooking class will open your mind and taste buds to some sensational flavours. Take a cooking class from a local chef and learn how to replicate some of the most exquisite Italian dishes at home. This is a great activity to do if the weather isn’t on your side, as you can escape the harsh weather whilst still enjoying your holiday.

Head to the theatre: purchasing a ticket for the theatre in Italy is one of the smartest moves you can make. You will not only escape the cold but will also get the opportunity to view some of the most unique shows in Europe.

Visit a winery: for the self-proclaimed wine enthusiast, visiting a winery may be the perfect winter activity. The grape harvest would have just finished but the cellars are now full of new-born bottles.

Take your time in a museum: visiting a museum can be an extraordinary experience, even more so when in a country with as much cultural heritage and history as Italy.In winter, crowds are considerably reduced making your visit peaceful and relaxed.

Italy is one place you must visit in your lifetime as it is full of rustic charm, delicious food and a fantastic atmosphere, which can be better enjoyed in the winter months. So, it is definitely time to start planning that last-minute winter break!

Truffle hunting in Umbria

posted by Home In Italy on October 10th, 2017

Truffle Hunting in Umbria is an ancient tradition and the quality truffles in this territory is famous throughout the world. If you are a fan of truffles, you will surely know that the wooded hills of Umbria are an ideal habitat for many kinds of high quality truffles. Today we will try to learn more about these underground and exquisite mushrooms!

Truffle in Umbria: what varieties?
The Nero pregiato, known also as Truffle of Norcia or Spoleto, grows up from November to March and is spread along the territories boarding the Nera river and the mountains around Spoleto and Trevi. These truffles are quite small, their bark is black and wrinkled and the pulp is black-violet. Once picked, the black truffles are divided into several categories depending on the quality and size and their price will vary accordingly (from 350 to 800 Euros per Kg). Among the truffles of Umbria, these are the most famous and appreciated, for their intense aroma and the particular flavour that persists, indeed it is exalted, when cooked.
Tartufo Bianco, which is usually cultivated in Piedmont region, is indeed also present in Umbria and is picked up from October to December. This variety is very rare and valuable and can be recognized by its round shape, the whitish yellow colour and the colour of the pulp, ranging from hazelnut to dark brown with reddish streaks. It is considered a real delicacy and can be priced up to 4.000 Euros per kg, but its scent is unforgettable and its particular flavour is preserved only if served raw.
Scorzone and Bianchetto are less valuable than the previous two varieties, but yet very common and used in the preparation of sauces. The Scorzone is characterized by a less intense scent and is available in summer and autumn seasons, while the Bianchetto is recognized for its small size and reddish colour and is available from January to April. These two “little brothers” have significantly lower prices, ranging from 100 to 250 Euros per Kq.

Truffle Hunting Tour!
The collection of truffles in Umbria is allowed all year around except for May and September: truffles can only be picked when they are ripe, otherwise they will have no scent. The concierge team at Home in Italy will be pleased to help you in organizing a memorable experience of a truffle hunting tour!
Join an expert truffle hunter and his dogs on his daily search for precious truffles before having a lunch of truffle-based dishes. You will see the truffle hunting dogs in action and learn about the history of truffle hunting in Umbria. This experience will bring you back to tradition and will will make your day absolutely special!

Admiring Giotto, Perugino and other Italian art treasures in Perugia

posted by Home In Italy on May 23rd, 2017

From 11th April to 15th September 2017, Vittorio Sgarbi, curator of the exhibition, presents a real temporal museum display entitled “From Giotto to Morandi. Art Treasures of Italian Foundations and Banks “. The exhibition is hosted in Palazzo Baldeschi, a historic building of extraordinary beauty in Perugia.

Visitors will feel as though they were going through the gates of a large national museum, such as visiting the Uffizi Gallery in Florence or the Capodimonte Museum in Naples.

It is a large patrimony, belonging to banks and foundations, which collects paintings of exceptional value, showing the historical and cultural features of the different territories of the Italian peninsula from the ’300s until the’ 900s, despite the variety of its composition.

This particular activity of collection represents an aspect of the more comprehensive cultural commitment of Banks and Foundations in a wider framework of activity and commitment to the community: purchase, recovery, restoration, and thus protection and enhancement of art works that would otherwise be dispersed.
The exhibition in Perugia takes into account the evolution of styles and provides an extensive overview of the subjects chosen by the artists. It ranges from the sacred theme to the allegorical and mythological representations, from the genre of the portrait to the ones of landscape and still life.
An appointment not to be missed if you are in Perugia or in Umbria for a weekly vacation.
For information on stays in Umbria please visit: http://www.homeinitaly.com/luxury-villas-umbria.php