The month of April in Italy to celebrate my recent retirement was the plan. We had visited the major cities of Italy a couple years back so we were looking for something a bit different this time. Fortunately, we found Zicasso during an internet search and our plan soon began to take shape. Through a series of email exchanges and a few phone calls our Zicasso travel representative, they helped us put together a most marvelous itinerary that had us staying in some of the most beautiful accommodations throughout our stay.
We arrived at the Milan Malpensa Airport, picked up our rental car and we were off. First stop, the cliff side village of Manarola, one of the beautiful villages that makes up the famous Cinque Terra - a rugged portion of the Italian Riviera and a National Park. The scenery was nothin but spectacular as we hiked between the villages. After a week in Manarola we made our way to the Tuscany and Umbria regions of Italy. Our time in Tuscany was spent driving the backroads and visiting hilltop villages and vineyards coming back each night to an exquisite countryside villa. Umbria was every bit as splendid as Tuscany, maybe even more! More backroads, beautiful hilltop villages, splendid dining, but slightly more laidback than Tuscany. A rebuilt 17th century Bishop’s home turned into a beautiful boutique bed and breakfast was a such a treat to come back to each evening. Our month in Italy was soon at its midpoint and it was time to explore some more! We left the countryside to spend a week in Bologna and Verona. While most people might visit Venice, Florence, or Rome. We had visited these cities before and were looking for something slightly different - boy we’re we pleasantly surprised! In each of these wonderful cities we stayed, again, in beautiful boutique hotels in the old town sections of the town where we simply walked out the door and all the sights and superb dining were steps away. I can’t say enough about Bologna and Verona - simply wonderful! We even had the good fortune of attending a Bob Dylan concert in Verona’s ancient Roman Theatre on a starry evening only to walk back to our boutique hotel minutes away. Our month was slipping by... We had one more stop, four nights in Bellagio on Lake Como. Oh my! How could this vacation keep getting better! Our hotel was in town across from the ferry pier which was very handy. We had a room with two large window overlooking Lake Como. Each morning we woke up to beautiful sunrises. One of our Bellagio highlights included a personal water taxi ride with a guide who showed us some of the incredible villas on the lake. When I think of Bellagio, I think of all the beautiful flowers and sidewalk cafes. Well, sadly, it was time to head home.... We will never forget our month in Italy, and we will never forget the great service we received from Zicasso - and our travel agent. We are already talking about another trip!
Spend two months!
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