Your Next Postcard Will Be From Bella Italia!

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Cercare, gustare, amare…la dolce vita!

Seeking, savoring and loving…the sweet life!!

Up up and away….off I go and I’m taking YOU with me!

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Victoria’s Italy is YOUR Italy!

Follow me HERE or on Bloglovin, Facebook and Twitter

AND….

On How to Tour Italy with Anthony Capozzoli where I will be doing fun and informative podcasts all along the way!

Let’s stay in touch! Send Me a Postcard! Tell me what you want to hear about…I welcome your comments and questions!

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Posted in Ciao Bella!, Italian Talks Articles, La Dolce Vita!, Tours to Italy!, Travel TipZ | Tagged , , , , , | Leave a comment

La Dolce Vita Countdown!

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Cercare, gustare, amare la dolce vita…con passione!

Seeking, savoring and loving the sweet life….with passion!

La dolce vita…the sweet life…

 In just one week I’ll begin my long-awaited and planned adventure – seeking and sharing all the sweet things in life Italian-style. Well, maybe not all, but all that I can find in 6 weeks!

So,  please accept this invitation to join me!

From the obvious to the unexpected, you’ll be there with me as I explore and experience my Italy.

Won’t you taste the gelato, sip the espresso, walk through the Sistine Chapel, cook and enjoy regional specialties, go wine tasting, find the best chocolate, stand in St. Peter’s Square, visit David (again!), go shopping, get lost, visit the Colosseum and Pompeii, sip limoncello on the Amalfi coast, walk through medieval towns and on the sands of the Adriatic...and so much more…with me?? 

Not only will I be taking oodles of photos and some videos but I will be sharing with you (hopefully) daily right here on my blog as well as on Facebook, Bloglovin, & Twitter.

In addition, I will be featured on How to Tour Italy doing real time live podcasts with Anthony Capozzoli!

Read more about my itinerary and please be sure to FOLLOW ME ** along the way -  I promise you will enjoy yourself!

( **Just sign in with your email where indicated on the right- your privacy is always respected and your email is never shared!)

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Posted in Florence, Gelato, Inspired Travel, Italian Style, La Dolce Vita!, Puglia 2014, Tours to Italy!, Travel TipZ, Tuscany, Umbria 2014 | Tagged , , , , , , , , | 6 Comments

Victoria’s Italy Featured in Italian Talks

Italian Talks is a website/blog site sponsored by the luxurious Baglioni Hotels in Italy.

On a regular basis they publish “Italian stories by true lovers of Italy” and on March 21, 2014,they published a story by this true lover of Italy!

To say I am thrilled and honored is an understatement. And, with two more articles in submission (and approved) and after my upcoming 6 week immersion in Italy, I certainly intend to share more of that love and passion!

Of course, what’s the point of writing if no one reads it? Well, the satisfaction of being recognized and published is not to be underestimated but it is when you, the reader, take the time to click and read (perhaps even comment?) that makes it even more worthwhile and gratifying.

Grazie in advance for your time!

And, that said, I invite you to a small charming hill town in Tuscany:

Pienza: A Pope’s Pride

Continue reading

Posted in Inspired Travel, Italian Talks Articles, La Dolce Vita!, Pienza, Rewarding Sightseeing, Travel TipZ, Tuscany | Tagged , , , , , , , , | 6 Comments

Today’s Travel TidBitz: Don’t Let “What Ifs” Trip Up Your Travel Plans!

Today’s Travel TidBitz:

Don’t Let “What Ifs” Trip Up Your Travel Plans!

“I’ve had a lot of worries in my life, most of which never happened.”

- Mark Twain

Thank you for joining me this morning!  Tidbit is defined as a morsel, snack, bite, treat, a small taste of something…a tiny little bit of information revealed…

Travel TidBitz for March 25, 2014:

Don’t Let “What Ifs” Trip Up Your Travel Plans!

Don’t Worry, Be Prepared!

Do you or anyone you know tend to worry about what “could” happen on your travels? When you share your excitement about going somewhere, do some people tell you all of the horror stories about pick pockets, missed flights, bad weather, rude locals and that one bad food experience they had?

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Don’t let “what ifs” or worries spoil your travel plans!

Yeah, me, too…I’ve been planning a 6-week trip to Italy for months and I’ve lost count of how much “advice” and how many “warnings” I’ve heard about this, that and the other… Gee, thanks for sharing?!? Honestly, if we always listened to the nay-sayers, would we even leave the house?

OK, yes, “stuff” happens - flights get cancelled or changed, weather doesn’t always co-operate, we will occasionally not have an accommodation or meal we want to remember, but that is part of traveling!

There will be high points and not so high - but worrying about it beforehand? My advice is “don’t!”. That said, what I do advise is to be prepared “just in case”.  If you’ve addressed your major concerns in advance, worries won’t shape or affect your experience, peace of mind will!

So, here are 10 Potential What Ifs and Worries and Answers!

Now, go and have a great time!

* * *

travel tidbitzSend Me a Postcard! Please Comment Below (or click on the stamp if you want it to be private)!

What are Your Worries and What Ifs? Please Share!

 

Posted in 10 "What Ifs" and Worries That Can Snag Your Travel Planning (and Shouldn't), Rewarding Sightseeing, S.O.S. - Just in Case..., Safe TravelZ, Solo Travel, The Savvy Traveler, Travel Planning, Travel PointerZ, Travel SmartZ, Travel TidBitZ, Travel TipZ | Tagged , , , , , , , , , , | 2 Comments

Travel TidBitZ Redux: It’s a S-T-R-E-T-C-H!!!

Today’s Travel TidBitZ is a Redux:

It’s a S-T-R-E-T-C-H!!!

Travel requires a lot of stretching…not only our pocketbooks, time, patience, and bodies but our pants! Our pants??

Thank you for joining me this morning!  Tidbit is defined as a morsel, snack, bite, treat, a small taste of something…a tiny little bit of information revealed…

Always room for one more indulgence...

Always room for one more indulgence…

** Travel TidBitZ for March 13, 2014 **

A few months ago I wrote a “Tribute to Spandex” – it was fun to write and I meant every word of it! I do a lot of stretching but it’s when the stretch is in my clothes that I am really grateful!

I swore I was going to lose those infamous 5 pounds (again!) before my next trip (which is in 5 weeks). Well, uh, I said that about 15 weeks ago… Sure, there’s still hope but, even if all else fails, that 2 or 3% of stretchy stuff on the label has my back (yep, and my back side, too!).

Now, I don’t want a label that is 100% anything - no no no! Labels must read washable and some % of one of those magic fibers! Then I have no worries because there will always be room for that extra guilty gastronomic pleasure.

So, here is my tribute, my homage to the blessings of spandex and all of those other wonderful inventions that make our lives (and weak moments of overindulgence) tolerable! I toast and say thank you!

Let’s Hear It for S-T-R-E-T-C-H-Y Stuff!!

travel tidbitzPlease Send Me a Postcard! Just Comment Below (or “Click” on the Stamp if You Want it to be Private).

Please share any times you had to stretch during your travels!

Posted in Art of Packing, Inspired Travel, Travel SmartZ, Travel TidBitZ, Travel TipZ | Tagged , , , , , , | 2 Comments

Celebrating Women – 2014

March is National Women’s History Month

and

Today is International Women’s Day 2014

This year’s theme is

Inspiring Change

I’m all for that! Positive change, of course. Sometimes I can’t believe that we still have to talk about inequality – but the fact remains that inequality exists and, whatever it takes for however long it takes, changing it must be on our agenda.

Thank you to those women who have nurtured & inspired us...

Thank you to those women who have nurtured & inspired us…

Brava to the women around the world who have and continue to inspire us.  I invite and encourage you to appreciate the women in your life - past and present – for it isn’t fame and notoriety, but the every day acts of love and sacrifice that change our world for the better…and that includes YOU!!!

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From the International Women’s Day website:

Women’s equality has made positive gains but the world is still unequal.

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Change…

International Women’s Day celebrates the social, political and economic achievements of women while focusing world attention on areas requiring further action.

Inspiring Change is the 2014 theme for our International Women’s Day global hub and encourages advocacy for women’s advancement everywhere in every way. It calls for challenging the status quo for women’s equality and vigilance inspiring positive change.

* * *

For more about how Women’s Day is celebrated around the world, go to their website:  http://www.internationalwomensday.com/

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Today’s Travel TidBitZ: When in Rome…or Paris…or Tokyo…or…

Today’s Travel TidBitZ: 

When in Rome…

…or Paris…or Tokyo or…

Thank you for joining me this morning!  Tidbit is defined as a morsel, snack, bite, treat, a small taste of something…a tiny little bit of information revealed…

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Watch Your Step!

* Travel TidBitZ  for Thursday, March 6th, 2014 *

When in Rome…

It Might Be a Faux Pas

You arrive a little early or a little late, you bring flowers, you choose and wrap a gift, you bring a bottle of wine to your host, you try to pick up the check, you wear a sleeveless top, you call someone by their first name…all seemingly thoughtful and innocent enough gestures, but in some cases a major social boo-boo or blunder; what is referred to as  a faux pas, literally a false step.

Being aware of customs and behaviors of the country we will be visiting can prevent those awkward and embarrassing moments. With a little research or by simply asking a few questions and simple observation, we can avoid, well, putting our foot in it!

When we travel we’re a guest, and being a thoughtful and considerate guest means taking the time to learn a little bit about our host. After all, don’t we appreciate a good guest and welcome them back? Exactly! Besides, it makes everyone’s experience so much more satisfying!

Just by taking the time to pay attention to a few details, we all have an enriching and wonderful experience as well as demonstrate and communicate a mutual respect for each others way of life. So, with that said, here are some useful tips you’ll thank me for!

Watch Your Step! 10 Faux Pas that Can Trip You Up!

More Good Advice!puglia 2014

About Learning a Few Words

When in Rome…

Be a Savvy Traveler

Travel Lessons = Life Lessons

travel tidbitzSend Me a Postcard! Please comment below or click on the stamp!

Have you ever been guilty of a faux pas? Care to share?

Posted in The Savvy Traveler, Travel Planning, Travel SmartZ, Travel TidBitZ, Travel TipZ, Watch Your Step! 10 Faux Pas that Can Trip You Up! | Tagged , , , , , , , | 4 Comments

TidBitZ Bonus: When IS the Best Time to Travel…to Italy?

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TidBitZ Bonus:

When IS the Best Time to Travel…to Italy?

On Tuesday, we talked about the “best” time to travel. Of course, when planning your next vacation (which can be a headache anyway), there’s the ideal scenario and then…there’s reality.

ItalySome of us simply cannot travel during the most advantageous windows, i.e., what’s known as the shoulder and off seasons. Work, family, budget and other responsibilities have to be taken into consideration and if we want to take that vacation it has to be during high season. But all is not lost – high season as its benefits, too, especially if you plan ahead.

More about what low and high season and how to enjoy both:

The “Best” Time to Travel

As an adjunct I wanted to revisit an article specifically about the best to to travel to my favorite destination, Italy. As with all advice, it all depends on who you listen to, so my best advice is to take all of the factors into consideration and then put your plan together and run with it…now!

The Best Time to Travel to Italy

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Send Me a Postcard! Just Comment Below or Click on the Stamp!travel tidbitz

What factors determine when you can travel?

 

Posted in Ciao Bella!, Is a Tour for You?, La Dolce Vita!, Rewarding Sightseeing, The Best Time to Travel, The Savvy Traveler, Travel Planning, Travel PointerZ, Travel SmartZ, Travel TidBitZ, Travel TipZ | Tagged , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , | 4 Comments

Today’s Travel TidBitZ: When IS the Best Time to Travel?

Today’s Travel TidBitZ for Tuesday, February 25:

Ready to start planning?

Ready to start planning?

When IS the Best Time to Travel?

My short answer: Whenever you can! In other words, sometimes, we simply don’t have a choice, but if we do have a choice, the “shoulder” or “off season” is definitely optimal. And when is that? In the travel business, they’ll tell you it’s in spring and fall.

Although April/May and September/ October or the “shoulder seasons” are generally accepted as the best time to travel, here’s the rub, it’s no secret!

So, if you’re thinking that by choosing “shoulder” or “off season” you don’t have to concern yourself about availability or rates, you’ll be disappointed. You may not like planning ahead, but trust me there are thousands of others (worldwide) who do…

Of course, there are other factors determining when we can or want to travel – family, interests, work, etc….and if you’d like some help…

My best advice is right here!

And because I love giving advice…here’s some more:

Planning that Trip

Packing for that Trip

Making the Most of Your Vacation

Some Fun Travel Trends to Consider

Let Someone Else Do All the Planning!

Come with Me…

travel tidbitzSend Me a Postcard! Please Comment Below or Click on the Stamp!

When do you prefer to travel? What planning tips would help you?

Posted in Art of Packing, Is a Cruise for You?, Is a Tour for You?, Rewarding Sightseeing, The Best Time to Travel, Travel Planning, Travel PointerZ, Travel SmartZ, Travel TidBitZ, Travel TipZ, Travel TrendZ | Tagged , , , , , , , , , , | Leave a comment

Puglia PostZ #9: Andiamo! Let’s Go to Puglia!

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Puglia PostZ #9 -  Andiamo! Let’s Go to Puglia!

This April and September we will be “Kicking Up Our HeelZ” in Puglia, the charming heel of Italy’s boot.

This is the 9th in a series of Puglia PostZ which I have been publishing every few weeks in an effort to inform you about this unique region of Italy and, of course, to entice you into joining us!

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Your Invitation to Say “Si!”

Over the past months I have been inviting you to “Kick Up Your HeelZ in Puglia”, Italy, this year. 13 of you accepted my invitation and we are all so excited and looking forward to enjoying our time together in only 9 weeks!

Several of you have accepted for fall and I know that many of you are still deciding…Well, let me review why joining me in Puglia should be your next vacation destination!

Maybe you hadn’t heard of Puglia?

Maybe you have never heard of Puglia until now? Well, I can promise that you will be hearing a lot more! Puglia is emerging from the shadows of Italy’s more famous regions and is stepping into the spotlight.  Recently recognized and cited as a top destination for 2014 by Lonely Planet and National Geographic Traveler, Puglia is becoming the place to visit.  (However, for now, less famous means less touristy and less pricey – two more excellent reason to come with me!)

Puglia is the heel of Italy’s boot, a peninsula which divides and is blessed by two seas, the Adriatic and the Ionian. Since last summer I’ve been sharing you about this unique region in my Puglia PostZ and, in particular, about the Salento region where our 10 day visit will concentrate.

Puglia 2014

La dolce vita in Puglia!

Our accommodation for our entire stay will be a beautiful family-owned masseria (farmhouse) near Lecce, the capital of the Salento region.

Here we will enjoy and immerse ourselves in la dolce vita Pugliese style! And who better to be our local host and expert than Yle Sambati of YLTour? A native of the area and tour leader/guide for over 10 years, Yle has been singled out in the Huffington Post by Walks of Italy as one of the best tour guides in Italy and she was recently unanimously voted President of the Wine Route “Vigna del Sole”! Her engaging and warm,  enthusiastic personality and obvious passion for her home guarantees a memorable visit.

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Visit the unique & breathtaking Salento region of Puglia.

From its distinctive whitewashed stone huts to the crystal clear beaches…from the charming seaside villages hugging ancient stone cliffs to the palate-pleasing cuisine and wines; whether you’re a foodie, a wine lover, a history or art buff or just an Italophile, the heel of Italy’s boot has it all!

Harkening back thousands of years, this area was ancient before the Greeks settled here! And it’s all of these very influences over the millennia – Greek, Spanish, French and Turkish – that have contributed to it’s rich traditions and allure.

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Cooking & dining together! Perfect!

Whether you’re a foodie or wine lover, you’ll love experiencing the rich varietyof Pugliese cuisine and wines, which are as original as its landscape. You probably didn’t know that Puglia produces 40% of Italy’s olive oil and that it’s Italy’s largest wine producer, boasting 25 D.O.C.’s? And along with the wine and olive oil, we’ll be  partaking in fresh, local specialties (including cheeses and some of the 200 types of pasta exclusive to the region). And we will experience it all first hand – cooking and dining with local experts (local mums) – as well as wine tasting and olive oil tasting at local family run cellars and farms.

Puglia 2014 - Lecce

Lecce’s Baroque Santa Croce

Exploring local sites is also on our agenda. Are you an art or history buff? Well, there’s over 2000 years of it here! In addition to Lecce, the “Florence of the South”, famed for its dazzling Baroque art and architecture (and over 40 churches!), we will visit the Itria Valley characterized by its mysterious and marvelous whitewashed trulli, and wander the narrow streets of the picturesque seaside villages of Gallipolli, Otranto, and Ostuni.

All of this and so much more….all in bucolic surroundings and at a relaxed and leisurely pace designed to allow you the time to just bask in and enjoy la dolce vita!

We will be there in September to savor it all! You will be there with us, won’t you??

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Still undecided? Questions?

Learn More About Puglia 2014 & How You Can Kick Up Your HeelZ with Us!

Everything you need to say “Si” is here:Umbria apron - small no Lulu

Come with Me to Puglia 2014!  – An introduction to our holiday together.

Our Puglia Fall 2014 Itinerary! - Detailed itinerary of our time together in Puglia.

Welcome to Puglia 2014! - Information & photos of all the amazing things we’ll do & see together.

I’m Coming with You to Puglia 2014! -  How to Register! Don’t be disappointd!

Space is LIMITED!!

Find out about the Early Bird Special!
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Be sure to Subscribe and Follow Me to get the latest PostZ! And don’t be shy about Sharing!

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Questions? Contact Victoria

Posted in Ciao Bella!, Food Tourism, Inspired Travel, Is a Tour for You?, La Dolce Vita!, My Trip PickZ, My Trip PickZ - Italian Style!, Puglia 2014, Rewarding Sightseeing, Solo Travel, The Best Time to Travel, The Savvy Traveler, Tours to Italy!, Travel Planning, Travel TipZ | Tagged , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , | Leave a comment