Thursday, June 29th, 2017

Autumn in Emilia-Romagna

Of all the times to visit Italy, I always recommend that people visit in the fall. There are a few reasons for that: the weather isn’t as meltingly hot, there aren’t as many tourist crowds, and fall is prime season for enjoying the bountiful harvest. Beyond those obvious reasons, though, there’s something that I love […]

The Immaculate, Bursting Mosaics of Ravenna

Before leaving Emilia-Romagna this time around, I felt like I had seen nearly everything there was to see in this region — but there was one more place that I had to visit. Ravenna, the city of mosaics. After visiting the other UNESCO World Heritage Sites in Emilia-Romagna and nearby San Marino, the Early Christian […]

My Favorite New Destinations of 2013

2013 was a fantastic and exciting travel year — probably my most active year of travel yet! This year I visited a record-breaking 22 countries (UK, USA, Germany, Italy, South Africa, Netherlands, France, Switzerland, San Marino, Austria, Malta, Turkey, Macedonia, Kosovo, Bulgaria, Romania, United Arab Emirates, Japan, South Korea, Australia, Thailand, and Cambodia — though, […]

Modena, Balsamic Vinegar, and the Opposite of Location Independence

It’s a crisp October day in the Emilian town of Modena, and Caroline and I are ringing the bell on a stately white home. Was this really the place? We came here to experience the traditional balsamic vinegar of Modena, one of the greatest delicacies in all of Italy, and I was expecting, well, a […]

25 Best Food Experiences in Emilia-Romagna, Italy

The best food in Italy is in Emilia-Romagna. Period. Long known as the home of parmesan cheese, prosciutto, and traditional aged balsamic vinegar, even Italians from other regions will grudgingly admit that yes, Emilia-Romagna is home to Italy’s best food. Emilia-Romagna, a northern region consisting of the western inland region of Emilia and the eastern seaside […]

SOTM Tour: Month Five of Twelve

It’s been five months on the road for the SOTM Tour. I mentioned to Mario this morning that we were close to the halfway point — so what would his favorite places be so far? Japan, he said. And South Africa. And the Burj al Arab, and the night he proposed to me in Malta. […]

Magical Moments in Emilia-Romagna

Let me tell you about Emilia-Romagna — an Italian region that is so dear to me. It’s not as famous as Tuscany.  There isn’t artwork on every corner like in Florence, nor does it buzz in the way that Rome does, nor is it as picturesque as Venice. But there’s something so warm about Emilia-Romagna. […]

San Marino: The Tiny Nation Surrounded by Italy

I’ve had an ongoing fascination with tiny nations and semi-autonomous regions in Europe — Monaco, Liechtenstein, the Faroe Islands.  How do their citizens define themselves?  What’s it like growing up in a place where you’re one of, say, 30,000 citizens? I learned more about this on a day trip from Bologna to the tiny nation […]

Why I Could Never Be a Secret Agent

Google Maps has never failed me until now. I am in Rimini, Italy, a resort town on the Adriatic Sea and part of the Emilia-Romagna region. After a day of sunshine and hill-climbing in San Marino and Emilia-Romagna, I’m exhausted and decide to grab a train back to Bologna. Google Maps predicts that it will […]

Bologna la Rossa — Scenes from a Red City

I walked into Bologna and felt my heart swell with happiness.  This was the city I loved so much — a part of Italy that is breathtakingly beautiful yet rough around the edges, home to some of Italy’s best food but still pretty cheap, cultural and enthralling and incredibly conveniently located — yet still off […]