Posts made in August, 2011

Romantic Rendezvous in Florence, Italy

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In Florence, a city so full of art and beauty, narrowing down the best things to do on a honeymoon trip, can be a bit overwhelming. To help, we’ve compiled a list of magical moments you can experience together. The Top of the City Climbing to the top of Duomo’s Dome will give you a breath-taking view of the heart of Florence. Brunelleschi’s Dome by Ross King is the story of this structure, which was a feat of engineering at the time, and a good book to read on the plane. Gelato in Piazza del Duomo Florence has some of the best gelato in all of Italy. Pick up a couple scoops and take a leisurely walk around this smaller piazza and the Cathedral of Florence. There are plenty of people to watch and the magnificent doors of the Baptistery to see. Horsing...

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Palio Dinners on Google Maps

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It was an interesting discovery to see that Google maps satellite pictures of Siena were shot right on the day before the Palio. How do I know it? I was looking for the terrace where I dine outdoors with my friends in Siena, as I was talking about in the post on Palio’s magic side, when I started seeing unusual stripes on Google maps satellite view of the city. These stripes, I then made out, are the long wood tables set to host the big dinner in the contrada taking place on the day before the Palio, just like today. The dinner is called the “Cena della Prova Generale“, as at 7pm of this day the general test race takes place in the Piazza del Campo. Anyhow, you can tell there are several squares in town that appear “striped”. Some...

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Palio of Siena and Magic

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These are Palio days, and as usual I cannot do without being in Siena visiting some friends of mine at their house in town. It is always a wonderful feeling to dine outdoors at their apartment. They have a nice terrace that overlooks part of Siena, and there we have great fun dining during the warm summer evenings prior to the Palio. It is a fascinating experience to meet other guests at my friends’ table, true Sienese people that are passionate about the Palio and have tons of fun anecdotes to tell. I just learned about one that made me laugh quite a bit and also gave me an unexpected insight about the great amount of superstition involved with the Palio of Siena. You may not know it, but the Palio was born as a religious celebration in honor to the Virgin...

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Firenze Card: 72 Hours of Bonanza

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Maybe Michelangelo, Giotto and Brunelleschi did not have this in mind while they were creating their masterpieces for Florence, but if you are going to be in town for 72 hours, or close to that, now you can take full advantage of the Firenze Card. What is it? The Firenze card is a prepaid entrance to 33 museums in Florence, Tuscany also including exhibits and activities. It can be used within a time frame of 72 hours and costs 50 Euros flat fee. What are the advantages of the Firenze card? You will skip the lines of all museums, including the most awarded Uffizi gallery. You will also save a considerable amount of money, since the cumulative price of all 30 museums is way beyond 50 Euros per person. Even with just ten museums you are already breaking even. Compare...

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