A Travellerspoint blog

By this Author: Maurizioagos

Back to Gargnano.



Some weeks ago I spent some days in Gargnano (again!).

It is a beautiful village on the western shore of lake Garda


Via Roma is the main street of Gargnano. Here you can find several shops and a hotel.


Gargnano has a small harbour surrounded by some cafes and shops.


There is even a restaurant at the harbour....


Near the harbour there is a short wooden promenade on the lake.


Here you see part of a building overlooking the lake.


There are several buildings on the lake.


The old core of Gargnano is made of several stone houses. It is uphill from the harbour.


There are only a couple of shops in the old core of Gargnano.

Most of the shops are on the lower area of the village.


Osteria lo Zuavo; the restaurant I mentioned before, is located at the harbour.

Here they serve various typical Italian dishes. It is a budget restaurant.

I strongly recommend you this place!


Trofie al pesto is one of the dishes you can have at this restaurant.


One day I took a very long walk to get to Villa Feltrinelli.

This mansion was built at the end of the 1800. From 1943 to 1945 Benito Mussolini lived here.

Today Villa Feltrinelli is a luxury hotel.


It is not allowed to visit this mansion; except for one day a year.

This is the only picture I was able take of Villa Feltrinelli.

Surely you can see this villa from afar if you are on a boat.


Muslone is a village on a mountain. It is some eight kilometers from Gargnano.

It is part of Gargnano.


There are no shops and cafes in Muslone. Here you can only find a small grocery shop.


You can enjoy a great landscape over the lake from Muslone.


Toscolano Maderno is a commune made of two villages.

I used to visit Maderno (one of the two villages) in order to have a cup of coffe or a ice cream.

I didn' t like Maderno.


There is an interesting thing to see in Maderno. It is saint Andrew church.


This church was built at the beginning of the XII century. It was probably built on the remains of another building.


A nice private garden overlooking the lake.



Caffe Centrale is a nice cafe confectionery in Maderno. It is the right place to have an ice cream.


This cafe is located in the main square of Maderno; near saint Andrew church.


Another "not to miss" place to visit in Maderno is the confectionery Carlo. It is in the old core of the village.

Here they have a large selection of cakes and pastries. You can also buy slices of pizza and bread.


I didn' t visit Toscolano; the other village which form Toscolano Maderno.

I only visited the saints Peters' and Paul' s church there.

This is the parish curch in this village. It was built in the XVI century.

It houses several large paintings by a Venetian painter; Andrea Celesti.


When I was in Gargnano I revisited Gardone Riviera a couple of times.

Gardone Riviera is a tourist resort not far from Gargnano.

It is made of two area; Gardone di Sotto (the lower village) and Gardone di Sopra (the upper village).



There is a short lakeside promenade in Gardone Riviera. It is lined by some cafes and restaurants.


The Grand Hotel is one of the many hotels you can find in Gardone Riviera.

It was built in 1884. It is a four stars hotel.

The Grand Hotel is a really large and long building.



It has more than 160 rooms; some gardens and a swimmming pool.


Piazza Guglielmo Marconi is the main square in Gardone Riviera. It is surrounded by a yellow portico on three sides.


There are some shops under the portico and some benches as well.


Just behind the main square there is a street with some cafes and shops. There is also a restaurant there.


It was really a good holiday. It was sunny every day. It seemed to be in summer even if it was october!

Posted by Maurizioagos 18:17 Archived in Italy Tagged lake garda italy. lombardy. gargnano. Comments (7)

Back to Caorle.




After my stay in Portogruaro I spent some days in Caorle. It is a beautiful seaside restort.

Caorle is a island connected by bridges.

It is situated some kilometers from Portogruaro.


This town has two long beaches. Spiaggia di levante (the east beach) and spiaggia di ponente (the west beach).

The beaches are divided by a dam formed by lots of rocks.

Many of these rocks are sculpted every two years by sculptors from various countries.

It is a real contest called Scogliera Viva.


One of the things to do in Caorle is to get lost into its colourful old core.


The old core is made of calli (narrow alleys) and campi (small squares).


A nice small square.


Rio Terrà delle Botteghe is a long street in the old centre of Caorle.

Here you can find a good choice of shops and some cafes and restaurants.


I usually had a spritz around 11 p. m. Spritz is a long drink typical from the Veneto region.

It is made with white wine, sparkling water and a bit of beverage called Bitter or Campari.


This was one of my favourite places to rest in Caorle. It is near the cathedral.

It is a good place to protect oneself from the heat. It was hot when I was in Caorle!



I booked a room at a hotel where they served only breakfast. Hotel Luana.

This hotel is simple, clean and not far from the old centre of Caorle.

I found a good place to have lunch. It is a kind of take away. Its name is Gastronomia da Emilio.

Here I had two kinds of pasticcio (casserole) and cold rice. These dishes were really good.


Pasticcio with fish and sea fruits.


Cold rice.

If you like to know more about Caorle, please, check my previous post about this town.

Posted by Maurizioagos 17:48 Archived in Italy Tagged veneto caorle italy. Comments (4)




I spent four days in Portogruaro and I never got bored of this town.

Portogruaro is situated in the western part of the Veneto region.



The river Lemene crosses Portogruaro.


Several kinds of fowls live by the Lemene river.



Along the Lemene river there is a short promenade. Let' s say it is more than a path.

Here you can also find some benches to rest a bit.


You will not surely miss these old water mills if you visit Portogruaro.

They date to the XIII century. Today they are used for art exibitions.


This is a small wooden oratory dedicated to the Madonna. It was made in 1600.


Here you see the painting of the Madonna that is housed into the oratory.


Piazza della Repubblica; the main square in Portogruaro is bordered by various palaces and with the town hall.

In this picture you see the town hall. Its central part was built in 1265. Probably the side wings date to the 1512.


There are many old palaces in the center of Portogruaro.


Many of these are decorated with beautiful frescoes.



This is one of my favourite spots in Portogruaro. It is a small square right in the old center of the town.


Forno Zani is a cafe bakery. It is a good place to have something to eat as slices of pizza and other savoury food.


Two slices of pizza I had for dinner at Forno Zani.

Forno Zani is situated right in the city center of Portogruaro.


There are lots of porticoes in this town. Under many of these there are shops, cafes and restaurants.


A portico with frescoes.



There is an interesting archaeological museum in Portogruaro. The museo nazionale Concordiese.

This museum houses lots of Roman finds discovered in Concordia Sagittaria and the surronding areas.


Concordia Sagittaria is a town located some three kilometers from Portogruaro.

It was a Roman settlement named Iulia Concordia at the Roman times.



I suppose there are two parks in this town. One of these is quite small. Its name is Giardini dell' Abbazia.

Here you can see a beautiful fountains and some sculptures.

The other park; Parco della Pace is quite large and has various kinds of trees and a cafes.

I didn' t take any pics at this park....



A fairy tale house.


A private garden.

Posted by Maurizioagos 16:18 Archived in Italy Tagged veneto italy. portogruaro Comments (5)

The Buonconsiglio Castle...in Trento.

A very large castle.


The Buonconsiglio Castle is the main sight of Trento. It is the largest castle in Trentino Alto Adige region.

From the 13th century to the end of the 18th century it was the residence of the prince - bishops of Trento.

The castle is made of three buildings. Inside there are many rooms to visit. It has some towers and two gardens.


The oldest part of the castle named Castelvecchio was built between XIII and XV centuries.

Its courtyard is decorated with beautiful frescoes.

Another part of the castle is Magno Palazzo; built between 1528 and 1536.

Giunta Albertiana is the smaller part of the complex. It is a 17th century building and stands in the middle of the two palaces.


You can enjoy a great landscape from the Venetian loggia.


This is the bishops hall.


Another pic taken into the bishops hall


The mirrors hall.


The mirrors hall.


The library.


What we see here it is part of the ceiling of the library.



There are several ancient heaters in some rooms of the castle.


The gardens.


After, or during your visit you could have a rest at the gardens.




Note; one of the most important features of the castle is the "Ciclo dei Mesi" (cycle of the months).

This is a group of 11 frescoes painted around 1400 that shows the activities of the nobles and the working class at the end of the Middle Ages; month after month.

One of the frescoes is missing because of fire. These frescoes are housed inside Torre Aquila (tower of the eagle). Before entering this tower you are given a tool to listen to the story of this paintings in various languages.

I am sorry, but I don' t have any pics of these frescoes.


You could stay into the castle for hours. Explore it at leisure; rest a bit in the gardens and have a good lunch at the restaurant.

Yes, there is a restaurant in the precinct of the castle. They also serve typical food of the Trentino Alto Adige region.

Posted by Maurizioagos 11:11 Archived in Italy Tagged italy trentino trento castle. Comments (4)

Memories of Trieste.


Trieste is a city in northeastern Italy. It is situated between the Adriatic Sea and Slovenia. It is also located near Croatia.

This city is worth a stop of a couple of days or more if you are going to Slovenia or to Croatia. You could even choose it as a base to do explore some towns or villages in the Friuli Venezia Giulia region.

It is possible and easy to go to various destinations in eastern Europe from Trieste, by coach. There are coaches to several places in Croatia, Slovenia, Romania and to other countries departing from the bus station in Trieste.

The bus station is situated at piazza della Libertà . It is just some meters from the railway station. This station is not a nice place, but there is a convenient cafe and some shops inside.

I visited Trieste lots of time and also a week ago.


Piazza dell' Unità d' Italia is the main square in Trieste. It is surrounded by several palaces built mostly in the 19th century.

Among these you can see the town hall; built in 1875. The government palace (1904-1905); with mosaics and a loggia and Palazzo Stratti that houses a historical cafe named Caffe degli Specchi.

This square is very large and opens to the sea.



Opposite the town hall there is a huge fountain; the fountain of the four continents. It was built between 1751 and 1754. Here are represented four continents, because the fifth; Australia wasn' t discovered at that time yet.





When I visit Trieste I like to explore the old town. I mean the area around piazza Cavana which is very near piazza dell' Unità  d' Italia. This is an area with a maze of streets and very old buildings. You can also find some Roman remains there.

Piazza Cavana; the square you see in this picture, was previously named piazza del Sale (i. e. salt square) until 1829, because of a salt storeroom which was situated at the end of this square.


There are various shops, cafes and restaurants in this neighbourhood.



There is even a Roman arch in the old town; the Arco di Riccardo. It was built in the I century B. C.



Here you see another Roman find. It is at Cavana area as well.


Landscape over part of the city. I took this pic from an upper area of the old core.


There are several palaces built in Liberty style in this city.


Here you see part of another palace built in Liberty style.


Borgo Teresiano is a neighbourhood characterized by grid like streets. It was built on the place where the salt pans were situated. This area was built on order by the Austrian emperor Charles VI and completed by her daughter Maria Teresa in the 1800' s.

Here you can see the Canal Grande; built between 1750 and 1756. It is bordered by several palaces; by the church of saint Antonio Nuovo, several cafes, restaurants and shops.

In this picture you see a statue of the Irish writer James Joyce. He lived for some time in Trieste.


I spotted this stone face on the bridge you see in the previous picture.


This is Palazzo Gopcevich. It houses the Civico Museo Teatrale Carlo Shmidl. It is a museum related to the theatre.


The Serbian ortodox church was built on the site of a previous church that was used both by the Greek and the Serbian communities in the '700. It was opened in 1868.

It is surmounted by five light blue domes; one large and four smaller.




Inside the church you can see the iconostasis; that is a group of icons partly covered in gold and silver. This was built in Russia at the beginning of the ' 800.

A silver chandelier that was a present by Paolo Petrovich; (future tsar Paul I) when he visited Trieste in 1772 is another highlight of this church. Many other beautiful work of art will surely catch your attention inside this church.


Here you see another cupola inside the church.


Bar pasticceria Urbanis is a budget restaurant where I usually have lunch when I am in Trieste. It is also a meeting place where people go to have an aperitivo (a drink taken before meals).

Urbanis is an historic cafe, but it is modern furnished.


At Urbanis ' they have a menu. but they also serve a menu of the day. Here food is really cheap. Drinks served at the table are expensive.


There is another restaurant I strongly recommend; "La Vecia Maniera". It is located directly on the canale Ponterosso (see; Borgo teresiano).

Here they serve several typical dishes and also Italian ones.

This restaurant is at n. 5 in via Bellini.


Another church worth a visit in Trieste is the Greek ortodox church of saint Nicholas. It was built between 1784 and 1787 and completed in 1821.


This church has a single nave and its light comes from some small windows and chandeliers. For this reason it is not easy to take picutes inside.

Into this church you can see the iconostasis with several icons and several paintings.

The nave is overlooked by two balconies. The lower one was once set for women; the upper one was reserved for the choir.


There is a good number of museums in Trieste. I' d recommend to visit Museo Revoltella. This is a modern art museum.

The original palace which houses this museum was built between 1854 and 1858. It was owned by the baron Pasquale Revoltella (1795 - 1869) who was an entrepeneur and a financier.

In the 60' s of the last century two other palaces where added to this one to form a modern art museum with around 350 paintings and sculptures. Here many masterpieces by Italian and foreigner artists are on display.



On the ground floor of this palace there is the library. The first floor houses the baron Revoltella' s private aparments. The second floor was used for parties and banquets. Here you can see the dining room, the ball room and some other rooms.


Sircelli is a cafe confectionery I usually visit around 5 p. m. when I visit Trieste. It was opened in 1933 as a bakery. Some years ago it was enlarged and completely refurbished. Unfortunately this cafe is quite small, so sometimes it is not easy to find a seat here.

Here you can find a large selection of pastries, cakes, some savoury food as pizza by the slice and various kinds of bread filled with cold cuts.


A piece of prestniz at Sircelli' s. It is a typical Triestine cake.


I like their apple pie and the pastry with pear and chocolate.


There is a nice long promenade not far from Sircelli' s. Viale XX Settembre. This tree lined street links via Carducci with Il Giulia Shopping Center. It is bordered by lots of cafes, eateries and shops. There are even some cinemas here. Amost all this street is car free.



This is one of the cinemas in viale XX Settembre; the Eden Theater; now Ambasciatori cinema.


If you are in the mood to walk for some miles from this promenade you can get to a beautiful park.


The name of this park is Giardino Pubblico Muzio de Tomasini; also called; Giardino Pubblico.

There is small lake and lots of statues about famous Triestine people.


This park was laid out between 1854 and 1864. There are lots of kinds of trees and a playground area.


One of the main sights in Trieste is saint Justus cathedral. It is located on a hill overlooking Trieste.


Towards the middle of the V century there was a basilica on the site of this cathedral. It replaced a Roman temple.

This church was probably destroyed in the IX century. Between the IX and the X century two churches were built on its site. In the XIV century these were joined to form the cathedral you see today.


There are three mosaics and some frescoes inside this church.


The mosaic on the apse on the left; date to the beginning of the XII century. These depict the Madonna, the angels Gabriel, Michael and apostles.

The mosaic on the apse on the right date around the XIII century. Here you see Christ with saints Justus and saint Servolo. On the central apse there is a mosaic made in 1932.



I like this chapel a lot!


Next to the cathedral you can see the castle. What we see today is a large construction built between 1468 and1636.

It is thought there was an early bronze age hillfort around 2000 BC at the place of this castle.

In the Middle Age the Venetian built another fortress. It was destroyed in the XIV century.

From 1468 to 1471 Fredrick III of Absburg built another constuction on that site. Other works were made by the Venetians between 1508 and 1509. The castle was completed in 1630.

The museum inside the castle is made up of a furnished room and the Casa del Capitano. This is the oldest building in the castle. It houses a collection of weaponry, some furniture and other things.

Temporary exibitions are held at the castle. Inside the castle courtyard various concerts and shows are held.

Once you visited the museum you can stroll on the ramparts on the castle to enjoy a beautiful landscape over the city.


There is also a chapel inside the castle.


Mikeze and Jakeze. These are the original mechanical staues which striked the hours on the top of the town hall in piazza dell' Unità d' Italia. They are stored into the castle.

Posted by Maurizioagos 11:44 Archived in Italy Tagged trieste italy. Comments (2)

Another holiday at the lake Garda.



Almost a week ago I spent some days in Gargnano. I had been to this village last may.

Gargano is a nice village on the western shore of lake Garda; In the Lombardy region.


A visit of the village could start from via Roma. It is the main street in Gargnano.

Via Roma is lined with several shops, some cafes and a hotel.


Almost all the buildings in this street are tall and colourful.



At the end of via Roma there is the harbour. It is by the main square.


I took this picture from a wooden walkway; near the harbour.


Villa di Gargnano is a district of Gargnano. There are some hotels, a couple of shops and some cafes here.

Even this time I booked a room at hotel Lido in Villa di Gargnano.


I explored quite well Villa di Gargnano. I did it in the evening.


Villa has a small and nice harbour.


Another place I revisited was Gardone Riviera. This is a tourist resort not far from Gargnano.

It is made of two areas; Gardone di Sopra (upper Gardone) and Gardone di Sotto (lower Gardone).

In Gardone di Sopra I revisited il Vittoriale degli Italiani.

It is a hillside estate; a monumental complex commissioned by the writer, poet, jounalist Gabriele d' Annunzio.

At Il Vittoriale you can visit various museums, the last residence of d' Annunzio (the Prioria) and the park.

Gabriele d' Annunzio lived in the Prioria from february 1921 until his death in march 1938.


Quite near the entrance of this estate there is a large amphitheatre.

It it still used for performances today. It can hosts around 1500 people.

You can' t surely miss this huge statue of a blue horse at the ampitheatre.





This park is really large. I think it takes a couple of hours to visit it at leisure.


The rose garden.


There is the bow of a ship on the grounds of the estate. It is named Puglia.


This military vessel was donated in 1921 to d' Annunzio by the Italian navy.


On the highest point on the estate there is the Mausoleum.

D' Annunzio and some other people are buried here.


I also visited the Heller garden in Gardone Riviera. It is also known as the Giardino Botanico Arthur Hruska.


This garden was created in 1903 by Arthur Hruska. He was an Austrian dentist and botanic.

In 1988 the Austrian singer Andrè Heller bought it.

He also added a good number of sculptures made by artists as Keith Haring, Roy Lichtenstein and Mimmo Palladino.


Some big koi carps live in one of the lakes of the garden.


There are more than 3000 species of plants into this garden.


A beautiful stilt house. I checked if I could enter, but it isn' t possible.


A nice Buddha.


This statue should represent the god Ganesh.


There are the lavatories at the garden...and a water trick before these.


Almost at the end of the garden there is a cafe.

This garden is opened from march to october.


It was a good holiday.

Posted by Maurizioagos 17:25 Archived in Italy Tagged lake riviera garda gardone gargnano. Comments (6)

Mel. A beautiful little village in the Veneto region.



Mel is a small village located almost halfway between Belluno and Feltre.

It is so small you can explore it in a couple of hours. Small, but beautiful.

The main square in Mel; piazza Papa Luciani is quite large. Papa Luciani was pope Johannes Paulus I. He was pope for a very short time.

This square is surrounded by several palaces built from the 1500.

Here you see the town hall; built in 1510. Besides it you see the Palazzo delle Contesse. It houses an archaeological museum, the tourist office and some halls for meetings.

There is also the parish church in the square. The Santa Maria Annunziata church. It was built in the 1600.


Another palace you see in piazza Papa Luciani is Casa Franceschi. Long ago it was completely covered with frescoes.


Mel has a couple of restaurants as far as I know. One of these is the Antica Locanda (inn) Cappello. It dates to the XVII century.

This restaurant is also in the main square. It is the orange building you see in this picture.

It was closed when I visited Mel.


Here you see another beautiful palace situated in piazza Papa Luciani; Casa Fulcis (and later Zadra).

Today it houses an ice cream parlour. Also this place was closed the day I was in Mel.


In Mel there is a cafe where you can buy newspapers, magazines and cigarettes, a pharmacy and some other shops, but not many.


There is a small bakery some meters from the square. It is also a grocery shop.

Here you can buy a good cake make with jam or Nutella and various other sweet treats.


Palazzo Pivetta is a palace you can find a little downill from piazza Papa Luciani.

As you can see this palace has an arch. Under this arch you will walk on a Roman road that takes to some other villages.

Mel is really a good place to visit as a day trip from where I live; even if it wasn' t easy to get there!

Me and my partner got lost in the countryside! Not for long.

Posted by Maurizioagos 14:54 Archived in Italy Tagged the off northern path italy; veneto place. beaten village. Comments (7)

The Pinè Plateau.



I often do a day trip to the Pinè Plateau. It is only some kilometers far from the village where I live.

This plateau is situated over 900 meters on the sea level., so it is the right place to go to avoid some hot places in the summer; as Trento.

There are several villages on this plateau.

I' ve be in this area lots of times. After some years I decided to re visit some places here.

Baselga di Pinè; one of the main villages at the plateau, is situated at some 960 meters on the sea level.

This village has a good choice of hotels, restaurants, cafes and shops. It is a very popular tourist resort.


One of the sights to see in the old core of Baselga di Pinè is the church of Santa Maria Assunta.

This church was mentioned nel 1220. It was torn down and rebuilt in the XV century.

It was enlarged around 1535 and also between 1729 and 1743.

It is a small church.



There are some beautiful frescoes into the church.


Once you have visited the church you could stroll around the old core of Baselga. It is really nice.



Part of the square in the old core.


There is a lake in Baselga di Pinè; the lake of Serraia.

This lake is of glacial origin.


You can swim or go boating on the lake.

You can also walk around it.

Along the lake there are several cafes and I think some restaurants.

There is a playground area for children near the lake.


Miola is a hamlet of Baselga di Pinè.



In Miola you can find only a couple of restaurants and cafes and a supermarket.



Here you see part of a square in this hamlet.


There are mostly ancient stone houses in Miola.



At Christmas time Miola turns into "el paes dei presepi". Translation; the village of cribs.

Cribs are created at various places in Miola.


Lago delle Piazze is an artificial lake surrounded by some beaches and a large meadow.


Even on this lake you can swim or have a boat trip.

Also at lago delle Piazze there is even a playground area for children.


Hotel Pineta is a hotel overlooking this lake. I usually have a cup of coffee here before my stroll along the lake.


One day I am going to have lunch at this hotel.

Posted by Maurizioagos 10:31 Archived in Italy Tagged italy pine trentino lake. Comments (5)

Pesaro and Urbino.


I did two day trips more when I was in Gabicce Mare. I visited Pesaro and Urbino.

I had already been to these towns some years ago.


Pesaro is a beautiful town situated in the Marche region. It overlooks the Adriatic Sea.

It was the birtplace of Gioacchino Rossini (1792 - 1868); a famous Italian composer.


Piazza del Popolo is the main square in Pesaro. Here you see the Palazzo Ducale (the ducal palace) and a fountain; built in 1593 and restored between 1684 and 1685.

The first structure of the ducal palace was probably commissioned by the Malatesta family (the lords of Pesaro!) between 1285 and 1429.

The present palace was built on the orders; in the 15th century by Alessandro Sforza. It was restored in 1523 .

It is opened to visitors, but I haven' t visited yet.


Every morning inside the two cloisters of the ex monastery of saint Domenico a food and vegetable market is held.


A vist to this market is probably a good opportunity to find some typical Italian food.


The house where Giacomo Rossini was born and spent the first years of his life is not far from piazza del Popolo.

Today its interior is a museum dedicated to the composer.


The cathedral of saint Maria Assunta was originally built joining two churches; one dated to the IV century and the other to the IV century.

This church was remodelled more times trought the centuries.


On the floor of the church there are several Roman mosaics.


This nice buliding is Casetta Vaccari. It dates to the 1400. Today there is a cafe on its ground floor

Not far from Casetta Vaccari there is a palace that houses some museums of art; the Musei Civici.

I think this palace has a section with archaeological artifacts.


It is a pleasure to get lost in the Pesaro backstreets.



This is a shop inside an old building.


Villino Ruggeri is a small palace built in the Art Nouveau style.


It was built from 1902 to 1907.


You can see it on the street that takes to the beaches.


In piazzale della Libertà; a large square not far from the sea, you will surely notice a large sculpture. The Sfera Grande.

It was created by the sculptor Arnaldo Pomodoro in 1998. It is a copy. The original Sfera Grande is on display somewhere.


We can say that Pesaro is a beach resort. It has a long beach.


Orti Giuli is a place I like very much. It is a small park.

It was created between 1827 and 1830.



I spotted these boats from Orti Giuli.


Urbino is a large walled town with a well preserved Medieval and Reinassance center.

It is located at the top of a hill.

Palazzo Ducale is the main sight in Urbino. It was built in various phases. It was finished in the second half of the XV century.

Inside the palace the Galleria Nazionale delle Marche is housed.

This palace was commissioned by Federico da Montefeltro (the leader of Urbino) from 1444.


One of the things I was going to see in Urbino was the botanical gardens. Its name is Orto Botanico.


As in other botanical gardens here there are some conservatories.



These gardens was created in 1809. It is not a large gardens, but there is a large variety of plants and flowers.



Some streets in Urbino are very steep!


Other sights in Urbino are the oratory of saint John the Baptist and the oratory of saint Joseph.

I wrote about these churches in my previous post about Urbino.


If you like to enjoy a great view over a large part of Urbino you could head to the park outside the Albornoz fortress.

This fortress dates to the second half of the XIV century.

Posted by Maurizioagos 18:52 Archived in Italy Tagged marche resort seaside region. pesaro urbino Comments (4)

Gabicce Mare.




Gabicce Mare was the second base for my summer holiday. It was chosen by chance.

I visited this town in order to get to Gabicce Monte. Unfortunately I couldn' t get there due to lack of time. So I thought about looking for a room in Gabicce Mare.

This way I should have had more time to visit Gabicce Monte.


Gabicce Mare is a modern sea side resort. It has not an old core.


Spending some time on the beach is one of the things to do in Gabicce.


At the entrance of some beaches there are some paintings. Some of these are real masterpieces in my opinion.


I booked a room for some nights at hotel Paris. It is a nice two stars hotel; even if it is quite old.


I was given a room with three beds and the bathroom en suite.


At hotel Paris they seved a good buffet breakfast with several home made pastries.


Gabicce Monte is a nice village. It is some kilometers from Gabicce Mare. It is part of Gabicce Mare.

In the old times it was a fortified village.

I went to Gabicce Monte by bus.


From Gabicce Monte you can enjoy the view over Gabicce Mare and on some other places.


There are some cafes and restaurants in Gabicce Monte. I think there are even some hotels here.



Gabicce Monte is a small village. It is possible to visit it in a couple of hours.




Here we can read that Gabicce Monte was the birthplace of Girolamo Lanfranco and his son; Giacomo.

They were potters who lived here in the 1500.


I also did a day trip to Gradara from Gabicce Mare. I went there by bus. The journey took around twenty minutes.

Gradara is a Medieval village situated on a hill. It is only six kilometers from Gabicce Mare.





Gradara is a small village, but there is no shortage of cafes and restaurants here.


There are some churches in Gadara. One of these is the XIV century church of saint John the Baptist.

Its main sight is a crucifix sculpted by a friar in the first half on the XVII century.

If you look at the Christ' s face from three defined spots on the floor, you can see its three expressions on its face. Silence, sufference and relief.


There is a castle in Gradara. It was built between the 11th and the 15th centuries.

I did not visit it because I was in Gradara on monday; the closing day.

The castle is where the tragic story of Paolo and Francesca happened.

It was written in the Divine Comedy by Dante Alighieri. One of our most famous witers.

Francesca was Giovanni (AKA Giangiotto) Malatesta' s wife. She had a love affair with her husband' s brother, Paolo.

One day, when Giangiotto came home and caught the two lovers together in Francesca' s room he killed them.

Probabably this sad story took place between 1283 and 1285.


The street from the main entrance of the village is quite long and steep.


I hope to re visit Gradara quite soon.


The Gabicce Express train is a way to head to Gabicce Monte and to Gradara.

It is not a comfortable mean of transportation but you can use it if you have children.

Posted by Maurizioagos 17:43 Archived in Italy Tagged italy; mare emilia romagna. gabicce monte; Comments (3)

A day trip to Senigallia.




Senigallia is a beautiful seaside restort situated in the Marche region; between Pesaro and Ancona.

It has a fourteen kilometers long beach.

I visited Senigallia as a day trip from Cesena. I got there by train. The journey between these towns took around one hour.

If you come to Senigallia by train, the first thing you could see is the Rocca Roveresca. This huge fortress was started in the 4th century. What we see today dates to 1476 and 1482.

It was used as a prison and also as an orphanage. Today is a venue for music and art festivals.


Part of the fortress faces piazza del Duca. Here stands the Palazzo del Duca; built in the XVI century. This palace is used for expositions of various kind.

In piazza del Duca there is a nice fountain. It is called the fontana dei leoni ( lions' fountain) or fontana delle anatre (ducks' fountain). It was completed in 1602


At a short distance from piazza del Duca there is piazza Roma. It is bordered by some palace and by the palazzo del Governo (the town hall).

Joined to this palace we see the Neptune' s fountain. The statue that stands on the fountain was probably a Roman find.


There are lots of old palace in the old core of Senigallia.


Foro Annonario is a square surrounded by a round structure with twenty four columns. It was built in 1834. Here, every day you can find a fruit and vegetables market.


Under the structure there is a good choice of restaurants, cafes and some small shops.


The book "100 things to know and to do in Senigallia" is really useful to get to know the town. I don' t know if there is an English edition about this.


Portici Ercolani is a row of covered porticoes built along one of the banks of the river Misa. These were designed in the XVIII century on commission of pope Benedetto XIV. These porticoes were meant to host the stalls of the Magdalene' s fair.

Under these porticoes there are several shops and cafes. I had the worst cream coffee in my life under the porticoes!


Rotonda a Mare is perhaps the most popular landmark of Senigallia. It is a round shaped pavillion erected in the 1930' s.

It was used as a ballroom, restaurant, conference hall and wedding location.


I hope to re visit Senigallia quite soon. Unfortunately it is quite far from where I live.

Posted by Maurizioagos 16:37 Archived in Italy Tagged italy seaside resort. senigallia Comments (4)





Cesena is a nice town located in the Emilia Romagna region.

I choose Cesena as a base for my summer holiday. I thought I could do some easy day trips by public transportation from there.

Unfortunately it was difficult to get to some places I was going to visit; due to not convenient timetables.

In short; I could go to some villages from Cesena, but stay there for a short time; being dependent from trains or coaches.


Piazza del Popolo; the main square in Cesena is surrounded by several palaces, by the rocchetta di Piazza and also by some cafes, restaurantsand shops.

Almost in the middle of this square there is a beautiful and elaborate fountain; the fontana Masini. It was designed and created at the end of the 1500.

Every saturday there is a large outdoor market in piazza del Popolo.


Palazzo Comunale; one of the buildings we see in piazza del Popolo was built from 1358. The building we see today was made joining two structures.

Under the loggia of the palace there is the tourist information office and a nice cafe; La Vineria del Popolo.

At La Vineria del Popolo they also serve food.



I like the colors of Cesena!



There are some rows of porticos in Cesena.


One day I discovered some beautiful sculptures walking in the old center. These were created by Leonardo Lucchi.

This sculptor has his studio in in piazza del Popolo; almost opposite La Vineria del Popolo.


Here you see another creation by Mr. Lucchi.


One of the sight in Cesena is the Malatesta library. It was commissioned by the lord of Cesena; Novello Malatesta. This library was built from 1447 to 1452 into the convent of saint Francis.

Inside it looks like a small church.

Here people could come to read or study. It was not a lending library.

Beside the library you can visit the Sala Piana as well. This room was pope' s Pius VII private library. Here you can see several ancient manuscripts.

In this picture you see two very large (and hevy) ancient books.


Look up!


Another thing to do in Cesena is to have a ice cream at Gelateria del Corso.

This small ice cream parlour is situated in corso Sozzi at n. 64. It is not far from the cathedral (duomo).



There is a small park not far from the center of Cesena. The parco pubblico. It is the right place to have a rest.


There is a castle that overlook the town. Rocca Matatestiana. It was built around the 11th century near the remains of two previous defensive fortifications. It was renovated and improved during the 1400' s.


Today the castle houses a museum of agriculture.

I did only a day trip from Cesena. I went to Senigallia...I will tell you something about this beautiful town in my next post.

Posted by Maurizioagos 10:41 Archived in Italy Tagged romagna cesena emilia italy. Comments (4)

A short holiday at the lake Garda.




More than a week ago I spent some days in Gargnano.

Gargnano is a village on the western shore of lake Garda; in the Lombardy region. It if formed of thirteen districts.


There is a nice harbour surrounded by a number of colourful houses in Gargnano.


There is a good choice of shops on the main street in Gargnano. There is also an hotel and a some cafes.


I spent four nights at hotel Lido. It is very near the lake and it is situaed in Villa; a district of Gargnano.

My room was nice; the food served at dinner was good.

In 1912 the English writer D. H. Lawrence lived with his lover Frieda Weekley von Richthofen for six month in Villa.

The house where Lawrence stayed is still there. It is quite near the hotel Lido. It was refurbished and it is used as flats to let.


Bogliaco is a district of Gargnano. Its old core is really beautiful.

Even Bogliaco has a harbour with colourful houses.


Every september the Bogliaco harbour is the starting point of a famous boat race; the Regatta Internazionale della Centomiglia.


I spotted some beautiful frescoes in the old core of Bogliaco.


I liked a lot the old core in Bogliaco.


The old core in Bogliaco is made of a few streets. It doesn' t take long to explore it.


From the harbour in Bogliaco you can see a beautiful ladscape over Gargano.

The main sight in Bogliaco is a very large mansion. Villa Bettoni. It was built between 1764 and 1767.

It is possible to visit it inside only on guided tours. You have to book it beforehand.


Another place I visited was Gardone Riviera. This is a tourist resort not far from Gargnano.

It is made of two areas; Gardone di Sopra (upper Gardone) and Gardone di Sotto (lower Gardone).


In Gardone di Sopra you can find one of the highlights of Gardone Riviera; il Vittoriale degli Italiani.

It is a hillside estate; a monumental complex commissioned by the writer, poet, jounalist and Gabriele d' Annunzio.

At Il Vittoriale you can visit various museums and the last residence of d' Annunzio (the Prioria).

There is also its burial place and a large outdoor theatre here.



Before my visit to the residence of d' Annunzio I took a short stroll in the gardens of the Vittoriale.


La Prioria (the priory) is the mansion where d' Annunzio lived from 1922 until his death in 1938.

Into this dimly lit villa the rooms are crammed with books, art objects, musical instruments and lost of other things.

Into the Prioria you will visit the writer' s workshop, the kichen, the music room, the bathroom and several other rooms.


Unfortunately it is not allowed to take pictures into the Prioria.


Near the Prioria there is a large room; the Auditorium. Inside you can watch a movie about the life of d' Annunzio.

Morever; into this room; hanged to the roof there is a two seated S. V. A. airplane. D' Annunzio reached Vienna on its board in 1918.


Gardone di Sopra (Upper Gardone) is a beautiful old small village.


In Gardone di Sopra there are some small shops.


There is a good choice of restaurants and cafes in Gardone di Sopra.


Most of the hotels and other accomodations in Gardone sul Garda are located in Gardone di Sotto.



This is he Grand Hotel. A old and long palace.


Gardone di Sotto has a nice, but quite short lakeside promenade.


I liked a lot this holiday, even if it was too short!

Posted by Maurizioagos 17:22 Archived in Italy Tagged lake italy garda brescia gargnano lombardy. Comments (7)




I have visited Mantova various times. The last time I was there on a organiized trip. We were taken on a boat journey and a guided tour of the town.

The main sight in this town is a large palace; the Palazzo Ducale. There are also two palaces opened to visitors; Palazzo Tè and Palazzo dei Conti d' Arco.

Mantova is located in the Lombardy region. In northern Italy.


Piazza Sordello; one of the main squares in Mantova was named after Sordello da Goito who was a poet living in Mantova in the XIII century. It is the largest square in Mantova.



This square was built in 1330 after several old houses were demolished.

Here you can see the cathedral (duomo); the bishop' s palace; the ducal palace, Palazzo Acerbi, Palazzo Castiglioni (or Bonacolsi).

The ducal palace is a very large construction built from the XIII to the XVI centuries. It houses more than 500 rooms; some gardens, courtyards, squares and a church.


Piazza delle Erbe is another square surrounded by ancient buildings.

Piazza delle Erbe (herbs' square) is bordered by Palazzo del Podestà; built in the XII century and restored in the 1400. Near this palace you see the Palazzo della Ragione. This was built in the 1300. Beside this you won't miss a tall tower; it is Torre dell' Orologio. It was built in 1473. Another palace on this square is Casa del Mercante it dates around 1455. There is even a church on this square; the church of San Lorenzo. It is a round church. It was built in 1082.


Mantova has three artificial lakes created in 1190. There are lago Inferiore, lago di Mezzo and lago Superiore. The town had another lake that was dried in the 1700; lake Paiolo.


You can do several boat trips on these lakes.

I took a 1. 30 hours boat trip and I liked it much. There are also much longer trips than this.

In july - august you can see lots of lotus flowers on lago Maggiore. I could only see its leaves because I was on the lake in september. Several kinds of birds spend their winters around and on some islets on this lakes. There is also a good number of swans that are local residents of the lake area.

On my boat there was a very interesting commentary by an old man, about what we were seeing during our journey.

The boat had a cafe where you could by some presents; even the typical Mantovan cake sbrisolona was on sale and it was very cheap.


Sbrisolona is a typical cake sold at various shops in Mantova.

It seems its original recipe originates in the countryside near Mantova between the 1500 and 1600. Perhaps it was prepared for special occasions. One of the ingredients of brisolona was lard,

Sbrisolona is made with cornmeal, white flour, butter and hazelnuts. It has to be broken into pieces to eat it; you can' t cut it because it is very crunchy.

It is a budget present to take home.

Posted by Maurizioagos 16:32 Archived in Italy Comments (4)

Liubljana and day trips.



Ljubljana is the capitol city of Slovenia. It is also its bigger city.

I visited it long ago and I liked it much. Its old core is compact and easy to navigate.


The main square in Ljubljana is the Preseren square. Here you can see the Franciscan church. A red - pink church. It was built between 1646 and 1660 on the fundations of a previous church.

From this square you could start to explore Ljubljana.



The Ljubljanjca river flows through the center of of Ljubljana. It is crossed by 17 bridges. The most popular of them are the Triple bridge, the Dragon bridge and the Cobblers' bridge.



The Triple bridge is formed by three bridges. The central one has stood in its place since 1842, It replaced an old Medieval bridge. Between 1929 and 1932 two side bridges were added to the original stone bridge from a design by the architect Joze Plecnik.


The Dragon bridge was constructed in 1901 over a wooden one which was built in 1819. Four green dragons statues stand at its four corners.

The Cobblers' bridge, or shoemaker' s bridge was named for the shoemakers whose booths once occupied the bridge.


There is a large market in this city. The central market. It was designed by Joze Plecnik between 1940 and 1944.

It is made by a covered market and an open one.


Here you can find almost everything you like.


Cruises on the Ljubljanica river are scheduled all the year; even in the winter. The boats used for these trips are heated.


Departures for these boat trips start from Ribji trg pier. If you buy a Ljubljana card you are entitled to a free of charge ride.


The castle is one of the main sights in Ljubljana.

Its first construction began in the 9th century; except the Chapel of S. George that was consecrated in 1489. The other buildings were built or rebuilt in the 16th and 17th centuries.

The castle was used as fortress, garrison, prison and apartments block. Today it is a site of exibitions, weddings and various cultural events.


Entering the castle area is free of charge. You have to pay a fee to climb the lookout tower and to watch the 3D show about the story of the city.

From the top of the lookout tower you will enjoy the landscape over Ljubljana and surroundings.

Inside the castle there is a cafe, toilets and a souvenirs shop.


We travelled to the castle by a tourist train. There is also a funicular to get there.


Restaurant Sokol is one of the most popular places to have a good meal in Ljulbjana. I have been therer some times.

It is situated in the city center.


Tivoli Park is a good place to have a rest. It is a very large park.


There is a small lakem, a playground area for kids and some buildings into the park.


Skofja Loka is one of the most ancient towns in Slovenia. There is a castle here. It was built before 1202 and rebuilt after the earthquake of 1511. Today it hosts an archaeological, ethnological and historical collection of items.


Other things worth a look in this town are; the capuchin' s bridge, Homan' s House ( there is a cafe - restaurant inside) and some churches.

Homan House.


I attended an interesting event some years ago in Skofja Loka; the Venus Trail. It is a Medieval festival with music, stalls and other happenings.


This event is held in seven Slovene towns every year.

The idea about it came from a poem about a 13th century's knight and ministrel who dressed as a woman and travelled 52 towns of what are now located in four countries; Italy, Austria, Slovenia and Czech Republic.



The Venus Trail is usually scheduled the last weekend of june every year in Skofja Loka.


Bled is a village situated in northwestern Slovenia. It is well known for its lake.

On this lake there is the only island in Slovenia. There is a church on it. It dates from the 17th century and it was built on an earlier church from the 9th century.


Bled has also a castle. It is said this is the most ancient castle in Slovenia.


After a long stroll on the path looking on the lake I went to Slastcarna (confectionery) Smon and had a kremna rezina.

This is typical cake from Bled. It is made of a layer of vanilla custard and another of whipped cream between two layers of flaky pastry.

I had lunch at a restaurant opposite the bus stop. I think its name was Pla Princu. I had a very good rice with seafood.

Both Skofja Loka and Bed are easily reachable from Ljubljana by coach.

Posted by Maurizioagos 11:49 Archived in Slovenia Tagged slovenia ljubljana skofja loka bled. Comments (10)

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