Matera – Italy’s City of Stones – Day 2

More and more people are discovering Matera each year, or so it seems.  I recommend it to everyone who I talk to, when they express interest in visiting the south of Italy.  But, honestly, this is not the place to just stop by for an hour or two.  One should spend at least a few…

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Matera – Italy’s City of Stones – Day 1 – Part 3

Stone is everywhere in Matera.  It is powerful, and yet, at the same time, one is surrounded by evidence that man has been able to manipulate it, turning it into a means of survival, by making it inhabitable. The Torre Metellana can be found on Via Fiorentini.  Originally built as part of the defensive city…

Matera – Italy’s City of Stones – Day 1 – Part 2

We noticed some statues standing in a courtyard, and went to check it out.  We found a wonderful artist’s studio/shop. The Chiesa di Sant’Antonio Abate al Sasso Barisano, on Via Sant’Antonio Abate, is another of the local churches carved into the rock, like the Sassi that surround it.  While it is no longer used for…

Matera – Italy’s City of Stones – Day 1 – Part 1

Matera is a city that I feel everyone should see at least one time in their lives.  Getting to it is not easy, but once you arrive, and glimpse the city that lays before you, the travel will be forgotten, and instead, you will find yourself wondering why you had never visited the place before! …

Milan – An Italian City Full of Surprises – Day 3

The Monumento a San Francesco d’Assisi, or the Monument to Saint Francis of Assisi, can be found in Piazza Risorgimento.  The large monument, with a bronze statue of the saint on top, dates from 1926, and is the work of the sculptor Domenico Trentacoste. Casa Galimberti, on Via Marcello Malpighi #3, is a beautiful example…

Milan – An Italian City Full of Surprises – Day 2

Nothing could be better than a day spent walking around a beautiful city! On Via Poerio #37, a plaque decorates the facade of Casa Rollier, which is the building where the Federalist European Movement of Italy was born, in 1943.  The plaque pays tribute to Altiero Spinelli and Ernesto Rossi, two Italian politicians who co-wrote…

Milan – An Italian City Full of Surprises – Day 1

For our stay, we had rented a one-bedroom apartment, not far from Milan’s Central Station. This was an area that I had never really taken the time to explore before.  Now that we were staying there, I quickly changed my clothes, and ventured out to see what was around us. The Orthodox Russian Church of…

Rome – A Modern Ancient City – Day 3

A plaque on a building, on Via dei Barbieri, marks the spot where Pasquale Di Pietro and Tommaso Silvestri founded the first school for deaf-mutes, in Rome. Also on Via Barbieri are the headquarters of the Associazione Teatro di Roma. A nearby supermarket kept its wine department, in an underground cave! The Chiesa del Gesù,…

Rome – A Modern Ancient City – Day 2 – Part 2

After we left the Vatican Museums, we decided to take advantage of the fact that we were already in the neighborhood, and visited the Basilica of Saint Peter.  In order to gain access to the basilica, one must join the long line that seems to literally wrap around the Piazza di San Pietro.  While there…

Rome – A Modern Ancient City – Day 2 – Part 1

Our second day in Rome was spent at the Vatican Museums.  Now, this is one of the most popular attractions in Rome, or I should say, in Vatican City, for once you step foot onto the grounds, you are no longer in the city of Rome, but in the territory of the Vatican State.  Most…

Rome – A Modern Ancient City – Day 1 – Part 2

The courtyards of Palazzo Mattei were specifically designed by Carlo Maderno, to hold the statues and ancient fragments that we see there today.  It is truly a magical place, and one that I think anyone visiting Rome should seek out. Directly across the street from Palazzo Mattei, on Via Michelangelo Caetani, you will find the…

Rome – A Modern Ancient City – Day 1 – Part 1

For this stay in Rome, we rented a one-bedroom apartment.  The apartment was located a block away from the Largo di Torre Argentina, in the direction of Piazza Venezia.  It was a penthouse apartment, and was accessible by a small, private elevator. One of the best features of the apartment was the terrace.  It ran…