Hidden jewels of Italy – Summer 2018

Ten days before my trip I found myself panicking. I felt that my stomach hurt (and I didnt do my abs), anxiety was risen, and then I felt butterflies… Summer in Italy was so close… I was anxious most because of the fact that someone will come up between this “dream come true” vacation, as it happened a year ago just before my summer when I had really bad stomach flu and stayed home instead. ūüôĀ I was simply just not letting myself to experience this all over again. That’s why I was feeling this way… I run from sick people and dive myself into vitamins. Haha, you’ll think I’m crazy, but sometimes I have really bad luck.

Anyway, me 100% healthy on the day of the trip 28th July I flied with AlItalia to Rome. My better part, Italian by blood who lives in London (funny story), was waiting for me in an airport in Rome and was jumping out of joy to see me after 2.5 months of separation. The flight was a disaster, it’s a mild thing to say, I felt like I was flying in a helicopter. With constant leveling and the captain announcing¬†“Benvenuti in Italia” I’ve finally arrived at the worst airport in the world. I hate Rome’s airport… that flock of people running around, those long gates where you need an hour and a half to get there… Of course, this time also happened that I was waiting more than two hours for a passport control because the bunch of Chinese with a bunch of their kids were also waiting in the same queue.

My boyfriend was bitting his naild as he waited for me at the exit. We took the lugagges (lots of them) and started running towards the rent Рa Рcar terminal (1km forward) like a Serbians when they are running to get into the bus.  We lost about hour an a half waiting to get the car, and finally started driving to Pescara.

On this trip we planned to see three Italian regions: Abruzzo, Marche i Molise.

But, my boyfriend had a little surprise for me. We went off the highway, I read on the road sign “Tivoli”. I’ve heard about this town, but probably when I was searching what we should visit for this vacation, and I probably caught the name in the process.

Tivoli  is a small town in Italy, in Lazio region, that is only 30km away from Rome. Historycal data shows that town dates back to the 13th century BC. Town was once called Tibur (by the Tibar river), and some of them call him today Tiburtini or Tivolesi. Tivoli sits on the river Aniene which goes through Sabina mountains.

During the Roman era, Tibur had a special importance because it was the main route that the Romans crossed over the Apennines to the region of Abruzzo (which will be mentioned after). Since the 16th century, the city has bloomed as far as the reconstruction of existing villas which are present in this area. Some of the most famous are: Villa d’Este (under the protection of UNESCO), reconstructed by Pirro Ligorio for Cardinal Ippolit II d’Este and decorated with frescoes of well-known Romanesque painters and beautiful gardens (which we’ve visited); Villa Gregoriana which stretches over the Aniene waterfall and the Hadrian’s first-century villa. The city is decorated with three Roman temples: Tosse from the 4th century BC and Sibila Tiburtine from the 2nd century BC proudly standing on an artificial platform on the acropolis with Ionian columns and Vestine Roman temple (circular shape – Tolos) from the 1st century BC which rises above the waterfall of the river Aniene.

As we came through the narrow streets that looks like the stairs (before the cars, they were actually stairs) and how we almost crashed the wedding, look at the whole video  HERE!

Backpack: Nanna Home

When you step into Villa d’Este, you have the impression that you entered the secret world of the Pan’s labyrinth . What is perhaps most interesting is the fact that this villa is located in the very center of the city and that the city is actually surrounding the villa. This endless spaciousness of gardens, waterfalls, nymphs, fountains combined with the finest aria, tunnels and caves makes this place one of the most beautiful in the world. And when the darkness falls, the lights come down and fountains with their sculptures revive. Do not forget to wait 9pm, because then in the open-air temple there is a symphony of organ that will soften even the hardest cookies. ūüėÄ

We finished this wonderful trip to Tivoli with a traditional sweets – Tiramisu with coffee and strawberries (which I’ve tried for the first time in my life and it’s the best thing) that we found in the center of Tivoli. The whole video from Villa d’Este can be viewed HERE!

Our trip continued to¬†Pescara. I’ve visited Pescara briefly when I’ve been in winter in Italy, but we’ve just went through it on our way to Penne. Pescara is a capital city of the Abruzzo region and the name of this city is not of Serbian origin (as my father love to say and call this city PeŇ°ńćara), but from a word¬†Piscaria which denotes the city rich with fish. Located on the Adriatic sea, this town has really developed port activity. In addition, pedestrian zone is filled with branded shop, and the beaches are one of the most beautiful in this part of Adriatic.

In the pictures I am wearing:

Dress:AmiclubWear

Make up: Deborah Milano

Watch: Daniel Wellington¬†¬†(use code”milicadenicDW” and get 15% off on your order)

We chose Hotel Alba  to stay there for two nights in Pescara. This hotel is fabuluos inside, venetian style with a glimpse of baroque and rococo. Take a look at the pictures, we were really fascinated.

In the pictures I am wearing:

Dress: H&M

Watch: Daniel Wellington¬†(use code”milicadenicDW” and gain 15% discount on every order)

Earrings: Studio 16t The label

The next day, we went to the beach in a small, quiet, Pineto town (full of pines) that is rich of¬†long sandy beaches along the coast of Teramo. With the noice of bird twinkling, we’ve spend a wonderful and relaxing day at the beach. Full video from this beach, you can see HERE!

Since my boyfriend is Italian, and Italians love in the world only three things: food, their mother and fashion (maybe it’s not by the same order, but you get me), we went to Citta Sant’Angelo – outlet village which is similar to one we have near Belgrade, Serbia. I was delighted to be able to buy branded things at extreme discounts (from 70% and more), and most of all I wanted to visit Fracomina and Motives (really famous Italian brands which I love). My bf and I¬† split up, as two normal shopping partners would do, and went on a¬† shopping hunt. I was disappointed at the start because Fracomina did not have the actual store, but some shop had a couple of Fracomina items. The second disappointment was Motives shop (they didnt have 70% discount, and what they had was limited). Also, Liu JO for women had only a Rebel Women line that was also scarce. The only thing I was looking at was Guess, Gaudi and some of their brand named Sleeveles. Everything else had a much more things¬† for men (from my point of view). Guess had a 70% discount, so I bought a pile of clothes for the autumn, as well as a wonderful bag that was 45 eur. My better half bought the whole outlet while I was done shopping and feel asleep in the car. Who am I to blame when I’ve picked an Italian to date? : D

Whole video from this outlet, you can watch HERE!

Filled with new clothes, and full from a good pasta in some outlet restaurant, we continued our ride to the Marche region (from Ancona in the north to Ascoli Piceno in the south). I personally wanted to visit this region because of the cities that are rich in history, as well as because of the sandy beaches where the water is shallow and crystal clear. We chose Grottammare as the seat of our adventure. Grottammare is essentially a village (but it can not be compared to our villages, so please understand this term differently), which boast of its rich medieval history (even during the Neolithic Age, the remains of the city can be found) printed through Borgo Antico (historical center city) surrounded by Peretti Square which overlooks Prior Palace, Orange Theater, elegant Loggiu and beautiful sea views (Belvedere). This city was loved by Franc List, a famous pianist and composer who knew to stay here in 1868, even for six weeks. And if you want to see how I am getting down from the Old town in my slippers, down the stairs which are situated in a 90 degrees angle, see this VIDEO.

In the pictures I’m wearing:

Yellow jumpsuit: AmiclubWear

Necklace: HappinessBtq¬†(use code “milicadenic” and get 10% discount on every order + Free delivery)

Make up: Deborah Milano

Gold bag: Stradivarius

We accommodate ourselves in gorgeous¬†Bric&Brac B&B¬† in¬†¬†Grottammare that is famous by the rooms which are furnished as a: tennis, basketball and bycyle room). And, when it’s time for the breakfast you can smell fresh Nutella or Jam Tart which the owner made and eggs and bacon that she made only for us (because we like big breakfast)… you just fall in love in that place and want to stay there forever.

The first beach we’ve visited is in the town of Cupra Marittima. This little town have not more than 5,000 people living there, it is quite calm and non-tourist like, which means that there are two sun loungers and parasols for a total of 5 euros (all day) and that capuccino is 1.20 eur in a bar on the beach. The water is brilliant, crystal clear, and warm so you can sit in a shoal and enjoy … For someone who wants to spend a quiet holiday in Italy, where prices are very much appreciated, Cupra Marittima is a town for them. Next to this town is Grottammare where we’re staying and also San Benedetto del Tronto.

In the pictures I’m wearing:

Swimsuit brown Рgreen: Lindex  

Swimsuit blue white stripes: Tezenis

San Benedetto del Tronto¬† is a city next to Grottammare (by shore).¬† It’s most famous by the promenade (by the sea) which hosts more than 8.ooo threes planted there. They’ve made mini oasis on the promenade in a form of gardens with ponds and rocks, which is really fascinating. Beside the impressive¬†“lungomare” this city can say that it has one of the biggest harbour on the Adriatic sea. This city is rich with sculptures by the sea, so you can not help but notice an enormous art piece by the Ugo Nespol¬†“Lavorare, lavorare, lavorare, preferisco il rumore del mare” which in translation means “Work, work, I prefer to hear the sound of sea”

And, when you are heading towards the harbour, on the right dont forget to look at the  Museo d’Arte sul Mare , an open Рair museum by the sea which hosts more than 140 sculptures and 14 murals. This is something you really need to visit if you are there, but I recommend you see this thing before the sunset because there is not lights when the sun goes down. A video from this city, you can watch HERE!

In the pictures I’m wearing:

Short jeans with American flag: AmiClubWear 

Sandals: Mubb

Floral dress: AmiClubWear 

Watch:¬†Daniel Wellington (use my discount, just type “milicadenicDW” and get 15% off)

Golden purse: Stradivarius

Hungry for the food and wine, we were headed to¬†Offida,¬†a city located in a mountainous area in the south of the Marche region. This city is medieval (as well as almost every in Italy). The first thing you see when stepping into the city is the church of Santa Maria della Rocca (on the rock), which captivates its beauty and medieval construction. It looks a bit like it comes out of the rock and hence its name. A strange triangular square is one of the main ones in this small town. The Renaissance is present everywhere, in stone, on the facades, in the air. The most famous local wine is Rosso Piceno (because the main district and the city of Ascoli Piceno which will be mentioned later). Unfortunately, the wine event was canceled (due to which we visited the city in the first place), but we did not allow this to disturb us, but we enjoyed the walk down the narrow streets and stone stairs. We finally managed to persuade the waiter in a nearby restaurant to try some local wines with food. ūüôā The plan was successful and we had wine tasting. ūüėÄ Mission accomplished!

In the pictures I’m wearing:

Long skirt: Sleeveles (Italian brend from Citta Sant Angelo outlet)

Bag: Gaudi (also from Citta Sant Angelo)

Earrings: Studio 16 the label

The next day, we went on a daily trip to Ascoli Piceno, which is the capital of the Marche region. The city of Ascoli was completely accidentally discovered by Italians who were called “Piceni” a few centuries before the Romans discovered the “salt path” that connected Latium on the Adriatic coast. The city is really old, dates to 268 BC. During the middle ages, the city was attacked by the Ostrogoths, and Lombards. A lot of buildings in the city are made of a special type of marmot, called “travertine”, a gray stone that is taken from the surrounding mountains. The Renaissance square Piazza del Popolo is one of the most beautiful squares in the region. A couple of streets later, Piazza Arringo was the administrative and religious center of the city. They are surrounded by the Cathedral, the Baptistery and the Palace of the Nations. In my opinion, Piazza Arringo is more beautiful than Piazza del Popolo, and why you will see it in the pics. ūüôā

We went to the info center to pick up leaflets and brochures and realized that something is happening in the city. Everywhere there were posters with the inscription “Quintana” to which I joked how I know what is going on and mentioned as crazy chick couple of times “Quintana Roo is in Mexico – the Spaniards are coming.” However, we did not predict that tomorrow there is a big tournament in the city, inspired by the medieval tradition – Quintana – where six districts of the Marche region compete in ancient war games. We bought tickets without blinking for tomorrow’s event, but we had a small problem … We did not plan to sleep in Ascoli Piceno, nor did we have an accommodation. : D

Since it was already eight o’clock in the evening, I think we called over 30 rooms on Booking and AirBnB¬† and everything was bloody booked because this event attracted a lot of tourists. After two and a half hours of calling, we’ve finally found accommodation for one night, a few kilometers from the city center.

With very few hours of sleep, we got up with the Sun to attend an event that lasted all day. The entire city was on its feet, rushing to the middle aged dressed locals who played trumpets, hitting drums, parading horses across the city, flag-throwers and horsemen who later competed in the stadium. This was a memorable experience. Check out the photos and see for yourself. And if the pics aren’t enough for you, see the entire tournament HERE!

Backed by history and the long tradition that this nation respects even today, we took to road to the region of Molise, Campobasso, where my boyfriend is from. We’ve arrived in Casacalenda, which has population of 2,000 people. Surrounded by mountains, rich in natural and medieval history, this small town was a real refreshment for us in terms of relaxation, because we had already seen a lot and we needed a break. In the city was Molise Cinema, a festival that brought together famous Italian actors and featured premiers of local films. The Old Town took a special place in my heart, perhaps mostly because of the narrow streets (I’m crazy about them), and maybe because when you walk those streets people are near you because they are sitting on their terraces which are practically near the road you are walking. What has thrilled me the most is that in these smaller towns everybody greets everybody, it’s crazy, right? Even if they don’t know you, they say¬†Ciao!¬†¬†What a refreshment from Belgrade where everyone curse and hates everyone; (

We also attended the wine festival in Casacalenda, in the old part of the city and with the sounds of the local band enjoyed a beautiful night. The biggest reason people leave this city and surrounding smaller towns is that this area is very big on earthquakes and you never know when it will hit. Two days after I came home, Casacalenda was hit in another earthquake that was not mild. : / In addition to Casacalenda, we also visited Bonefro for some rock festival and Provvidenti (where about 170 people live). : D For the full video content, click HERE!

Only 40 minutes from Casacalenda, there is a city¬†Termoli¬†¬†¬†which attracts tourist across Italy for spending summer vacations there in beautiful resorts, diving into the blue sea and enjoying city center which comes to life when the Sun goes down. During the day, temperature in the city is really high, and it’s humid, but in the night it’s perfect. In some narrow street you can indulge yourself with sea food specialties and pizzas from Napoli. And after dinner, don’t forget to take a couple of scoops of¬†gelato (ice cream)¬†because that ice cream is damn good! Enjoy the pictures, and whole video you can watch¬†HERE!
In the pictures I’m wearing:
Turkish pants and a shirt from: Bershka
We’ve finished our vacation with a proper Neapolitan pizza! Domestic tomato sauce, mozzarella, basil, rosemary and Ventricino salami. Mmm, I ate three pizzas and I don’t eat much. ūüėÄ

Sad, because this vacation is over and I need to leave my boyfriend and get back to Belgrade, I headed to Rome. We’ve visited so many beautiful places, we share some pretty unbelievable romantic moments, we’ve met good people, ate good food and swam in the warm sea. This will always remain as a wondergul memory of this summer in Italy.Until the next time (which I hope will be soon: D) …

La vita √® bella quando abiti in Italia. Veramente…

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