Crystal clear sea and picturesque landscapes characterize Cagliari, a city rich in history and traditions. An unmissable destination for those who want to spend a holiday between beaches, nature and the many cultures that influence churches and monuments. The Sardinian capital was in fact founded by the Phoenicians, only to be occupied by the Carthaginians and Romans and finally by the Spanish.
The most famous district is the Castello District, which stands out on a hill about a hundred meters above sea level. It is a small fortress city with white walls and medieval towers inside which there are the Royal Palace, the towers of San Pancrazio and of the Elephant, the Cathedral of Santa Maria, the Bastion of Saint Remy and Porta dei Leoni. Also worth visiting is the Marina District, where, while breathing the atmosphere of the old seaside villages, you can find typical and local shops and boutiques where you can taste Sardinian delicacies. For nature lovers there is the Molentargius park, a naturalistic oasis of 1600 hectares famous for its pink flamingos.
The pride of Cagliari are the eight kilometers of beaches that start from the promontory of Sella del Diavolo up to Quartu Sant’Elena. Costa del Rei is also a well-known tourist destination, considered among the most beautiful in the world, closely resembling the Caribbean beaches; not to forget are Capo Ferrato, Cala Sinzias, Cala Pira and Piscina Rei, so called for its natural pools Costa Rei, considered one of the most beautiful in the world.
For info: www.comune.cagliari.it
History, culture and tradition have always characterized Catania, one of the oldest cities in Sicily, lying under the shadow of the highest active volcano in Europe, Mount Etna.
Catania is packed with things to see and places to go, such as the must-see architectural wonders influenced by the Greek, Roman, Norman, Byzantine, Arab and Spanish culture, the typical markets, like the Pescheria, the old fish market, which represents the heart of ancient Catania and the beautiful beaches, a beloved destination for tourists from all over the world.
Not to be missed are also the trips on Mount Etna on foot or on a jeep and the visits to the picturesque fishing villages of Aci Castello and Aci Trezza, which were also the setting for the novel “I Malavoglia” by the Sicilian writer Giovanni Verga, who has often taken inspiration from these lands for his stories.
Catania’s heartbeat is represented by the main square called Piazza del Duomo: standing in the center of the square, you can admire the city’s symbol named Fontana dell’Elefante, representing an elephant carrying an obelisk. Legend has it that this little elephant called “O Liutru” for centuries defends Catania’s inhabitants from the eruptions of Mount Etna, having the power to placate it.
Straight from the delightful Piazza del Duomo runs up to the foothills below Etna Catania’s main shopping street called Via Etnea, lined with beautiful palaces, traditional shops and luxury stores, bakeries and restaurants.
Another famous street is Via dei Crociferi, a very attractive street of only 200 m, famous for its baroque churches.
Good food lovers will surely appreciate cannoli and arancini, as well as seafood dishes to taste in the markets of Fera o’ Luni held in Piazza Carlo Alberto and Pescaria in Piazza Alonzo di Benedetto. Popular are also horse meat sausages and meatballs.
For more informations: www.comune.catania.it
Lamezia Terme and its coasts are known all over the world, as are the castles and its enchanting landscapes that have always made it one of the most touristic places in Italy. The nearby beaches such as Falerna, Marinella and Gizzeria Lido are holiday destinations for international tourism such as Copanello Lido on the Ionian Sea and Marina dell’Isola in Tropea.
Not to forget is also Pizzo Calabro, known for its famous truffle ice cream and for its crystal clear waters.
In Lamezia Terme you can admire churches such as the Cathedral of Saints Peter and Paul, the tower of the Bastion of Malta, the Norman-Swabian Castle, located in the district of San Teodoro on a hill 300 meters high overlooking the Canne stream, the Rione di San Teodoro and the Lametine Archaeological Museum. Also well known are the Terme di Caronte, which are located in a green park not far from the Gulf of Sant’Eufemia. In addition to the Spa, there is also the ‘gurna’, a pool of sulphurous water where you can benefit from the mud treatment, located outside.
For info www.comune.lamezia-terme.cz.it/it
Olbia and the Costa Smeralda have always been one of the favorite destinations for those seeking dream beaches and natural beauty. In addition to the clear sea, it is also famous for the archaeological site on top of the nuragic complex of Cabu Abbas.
Porto Cervo, Poltu Quatu, Porto Rotondo and Baia Sardinia are the most visited beaches of the Costa Smeralda where the worldly life and the sea life are well combined, offering exclusive boutiques and clubs and enchanted and wild places like Arzachena, where there are monuments and necropolis of the Nuragic civilization. Characteristic is also the Gulf of Aranci, much loved by snorkeling enthusiasts, not to mention the natural park of Capo Figari where you can admire the sea turtles.
To visit is also the Archipelago of La Maddalena, with white sand beaches and stacks: thanks to organized tours you can visit La Maddalena, Budelli, Caprera, Spargi, Santo Stefano, Santa Maria, Razzoli.
A mix of cultures and emotions characterize Palermo, the Sicilian capital, whose history is marked by different colonizations and as many moments of rebirth. The contemporary stands side by side with the classical: walking around the city you can admire wonderful Renaissance palaces close to popular houses, ornate churches next to mosques. Places to visit are the Palazzo Abatellis, a 15th century building, which houses a rich collection of modern and medieval art, and the Palazzo dei Normanni, famous for its marble floors and ceilings decorated with motifs of Arab, Norman and Byzantine culture. To see is also the Pretoria Fountain, known as the Fountain of Shame because of the nudity of the statues, as well as worth a tour in the typical markets of Vucciria, Ballarò and Capo, where sellers reproduce the typical atmosphere of the ancient markets. On the street you can taste the culinary specialties, sold in the kiosks: the crocchè (stuffed panzarotti), the arancine, the panelle (fried crushed chickpea flour), the sandwich with spleen and typical desserts such as cassata and cannoli are a ‘must’ to taste when you go to Palermo. For children, the typical puppet shows held in the Museum of Puppets are not to be missed. Outside Palermo it is also possible to enjoy the enchanting beaches of Mondello and visit the cathedral of the nearby Monreale dedicated to Santa Maria Nuova, which became a UNESCO World Heritage Site in 2015.
For info: www.comune.palermo.it/
Trapani is a small world. Located on the westernmost tip of Sicily, Trapani is a mix of emotions with windmills in the countryside and restaurants with suggestive panoramic views near the sea.
The city center features stone buildings made in Baroque style with churches and monuments, such as the Sanctuary of Maria Santissima Annunziata, dating back to the 15th century. Another unmissable place in the city tour is the Pepoli museum where you can admire works of art in worked coral.
Near the sea there are the salt pans of Trapani and Paceco, where you can see how the salt is extracted, the Torre Ligny, one of the best-known symbols of the city, and the Torre della Colombaia, located on a small island near the coast.
Two of the most famous events organized in Trapani are the Procession of the Mysteries, with statues representing religious figures, celebrated at Easter, and, in September, the Cous Cous Fest, a review that recalls one of the symbolic dishes of Trapani cuisine.
For info: www.comune.trapani.it
Lodz is the third most populated city in Poland and offers a mix of culture and history. The industrial era has left behind neighborhoods with factories and large buildings built with red bricks and, close to these popular neighborhoods, villas and palaces in Art Nouveau, Renaissance and Neo-Baroque styles. Places to visit are the Manufaktura, an imposing factory now become a commercial structure full of stores and entertainment venues where you can admire the MS2, the museum of contemporary art. Another district of former factories is Ksiezy Miyn, which is full of art galleries, concert halls and libraries, where events take place throughout the year: the International Festival of Comics and Games, the Festival of Four Cultures, the International Festival of Design, the International Festival of Photography and the International Graffiti Festival. Thanks to its textile industry, Lodz is also the capital of Polish fashion: in October it organizes Fashion Week, an event that attracts many designers from all over the country. It is the ideal place for shopping, especially in Piotrkowska Street, the longest pedestrian street in Europe, which in its 4 kilometers offers stores, pubs and restaurants. Walking along it you can reach the heart of the city to admire the buildings of the late 19th and early 20th century, built by factory managers.
“I have been walking around London for the last thirty years and every day I have found something new”. This phrase by the English writer Walter Besant is enough to realize how the city of London is a center full of charm and places to discover, to visit on foot, by subway or on the ‘double decker’, the legendary red double-decker bus.
London satisfies all the needs of the tourist who can admire the famous changing of the guard in front of Buckingham Palace, travel on a cruise on the Thames, watch London from the London Eye Ferris wheel or devote himself to culture by visiting the British Museum, the Tate Modern, the National History Museum with its reconstructed dinosaurs and the wax museum of Madame Tussauds.
Other famous places are Trafalgar Square, the square from which the roads to Buckingham Palace start, Westminster (seat of the English Parliament where there is Big Ben) and the center, the London Tower where the crown jewels are kept, and Tower Bridge, the drawbridge that connects the Tower of London with the Southwark area.
Shopping lovers can enjoy the markets of Camden Town, the stores of Bond Street, taking a moment to relax and enjoy a beer in the classic pubs.
Munich is the most important city in southern Germany. It has every year more than 40 million visitors, attracted by the charming royal residences, the fabulous parks, the museums, the baroque and rococo churches and the Bavarian folklore, which has one of its greatest expressions in the Oktoberfest, the most famous beer festival in the world, which takes place every year at the end of September.
Munich’s old town is a harmonious combination of its past and present.
An absolutely must-see attraction is represented by the Old and New Town Hall (German: Altes und Neues Rathaus), both in Gothic style, located in the central square: the first one was built around the 15th century, the other one around the early 20th century.
Another point of interest is the Munich Residence, the former royal palace of the Wittelsbach monarchs of Bavaria, one of the most spectacular palaces in Europe.
In the old town you should absolutely visit the Cathedral of Our Lady (German: Frauenkirche), visible from far and wide, which represents the landmark par excellence. The Gothic cathedral, built between 1468 and 1488 on the remains of an ancient Romanesque basilica, is characterised by its brick façade and two 99 m high towers.
It worth also a visit the Deutsches Museum, the biggest museum of science and technology in the world.
Art lovers should visit the Pinakothek der Moderne, one of the world’s biggest contemporary art galleries.
From a gastronomic point of view, Munich offers delicious food that satisfies all palates: you can taste Brezel, a sort of bread made with wheat flour, malt, brewer’s yeast and water, Knödel, large dumplings made from stale bread, Weisswurst, a sausage made from boiled white meat. You should absolutely taste also the Schweinshaxe, a pork knuckle, served with potatoes and sauerkraut, the traditional Bavarian potato salad named Kartoffelsalat and a slice of Sacher Torte, well known all over the world for its deliciousness, to end the meal on a high note.
Paris has always been the most romantic city in the world, a unique place that attracts millions of tourists from all over the world every year.
The Artworks, the beautiful panorama and the magic that can be breathed in every corner, as well as culture, history and gastronomic traditions are the strengths of a truly unique city.
The most famous place of interest in Paris are the Eiffel Tower and the Louvre Museum.
Other must-see tourist attractions are represented by the Cathedral of Notre-Dame de Paris, an elegant, imposing and mysterious monument built in Gothic style and the Sainte-Chapelle, a royal chapel also in Gothic style, commissioned by Louis IX to house his collection of Passion relics, including a piece of the Holy Cross, one of the nails used during the crucifixion and Christ’s Crown of Thorns.
Strolling through Paris, you should definitely stop in the cursed artists’ quarter of Montmartre and the Latin Quarter, plenty of very characteristic exotic places where you can breathe international cultures.
Absolutely worth seeing, not far from Paris, is the Palace of Versailles, one of the most beautiful and sumptuous palaces in the world.
And at the end the day, you can’t miss to taste an aperitif or a coffee in one of the bars located in the districts crossed by the Canal Saint-Martin or a traditional dinner with French dishes, such as snails or goose liver.
Tirana, the capital of Albania, is one of the most interesting cities in Europe, because it encompasses many cultures and in every corner transmits unique sensations, which show how it has evolved over the years. The brightly colored buildings of the communist period stand side by side with modern art in a mix of cultures: if the Et’hem Bey mosque is an example of Ottoman architecture and Islamic art, in the Deshmoret and Kombit avenues you can see the Italian and communist artistic influences. Ish-Blloku district, called Blloku, is the most modern place of the city full of fashionable boutiques, bars and restaurants, the center of Tirana’s nightlife. Not to be missed is also the visit to the bazaar Pazari Il Ri, where it is possible to taste typical foods and buy local products. Famous are also the seaside resorts near Tirana with avant-garde facilities and beaches with crystal clear water.