So we went to Italy and oh did I love it. We were only taking a short holiday there, literally 3 nights and 4 days. But it was absolutely wonderful and something I can see myself repeating over and over, mostly because it’s 4 hours driving distance and it’s not super expensive.
For our 4 nights, we stayed at La Betulla, a beautiful estate overlooking the Trentino/ Rovereto villages. It’s on a seriously steep hill and it’s completely confusing to get there the first time, but it’s worth it. It’s quiet, gorgeous, the owners speak Italian, English, German and are charming. Not to mention they make really good cakes for the mornings and their apple juice straight from their orchard is a delight each morning. And if you ever go there, try their homemade jams. YUM.
While we were there, the first night we walked up the hill to this fabulous restaurant also overlooking the villages with dining outside and candlelight on the tables called Locanda D&D. It was positively romantic. The portions were small, but the dessert was AMAZING! Which is a difficult thing for me to say because I’m a tough critic when it comes to desserts, ask The Cranston Herald.
The next day, we went to Venice. It was 2 hours by train comfortably and we arrived right in the center. We walked for the next 6 hours in the summer heat, and to tell you the truth, it was just as beautiful as you imagine it to be. I know that people complain of the incredible amount of tourists running around, which makes sense they are annoying, but looking past that it’s easy to get caught up in the beauty of the place. The little alleys where you can find a tiny yet packed gelateria, and then the sea at every corner. I was in love. Meanwhile, I had no hopes of having a true traditional and fantastic meal in Venice because of the inundation of tourists, but I did love putting my legs off the side of the island, just skimming above the water and carefully enjoying my coconut gelato.
The next day we went to Verona and Lake Garda. I love, LOVE. Verona. No, not because of the Romeo & Juliet balcony, because that was nice yet boring and terribly difficult to see due to the throngs of people all angling in to get a shot, and then refusing to leave when the rain started. I nearly had to elbow people in the head to get out because of their fear of getting wet. Regardless, for shopping and eating purposes, Verona rules. I had one of the best plates of food I’ve had in my entire life at Trattoria al Pompiere. No lie, eat there, you will not regret it. It’s about slow food, good food, basic food and they exceeded my expectations. I had a sampler plate of fresh ham/ or speck from around Italy by the older gentlemen on the side who has the one job of slicing the ham. And he’s been doing it for 35 years.
Lake Garda is another gorgeous spot if not also completely overrun by Europeans on vacation. But I’ll definitely be going back that way because it’s so frickin’ calm and pretty. And because it’s really easy to get to from Germany, which would explain why nearly half of Germany is there on vacation.
Sure there are many places to go in Italy, and I plan on going to those places. But Italy does not disappoint and although it’s no Under the Tuscan Sun kind of experience, it was truly beautiful.
Go to Italy, check it out. Go to the places the masses don’t go and you’ll love it as much as I did.