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It’s no secret that Italy is rich with delicious food, ancient history, world-class art and culture, and natural wonders. But even after you’ve seen the Colosseum, the Venetian canals, the David, and Pompeii, there is still so much to discover in Italy.
You won’t want to miss these Italian wonders on your quest to see it all.
Get your fork around the oldest pasta in the world in Minori. Try a taste of ancient Roman cuisine with ndunderi, the precursor of gnocchi once made with spelt flour and rennet. Today, it is made with flour, eggs, and ricotta. The traditional dish is considered by the United Nations to be the oldest in the world, making it a must-try of the region.
Lake Maggiore, which sits on the south side of the Alps touching Switzerland, is the second-largest lake in Italy. The lake makes a perfect retreat, painted by breathtaking scenery. Settled among mountains and foothills, you’ll find exotic Mediterranean wildlife, charming islands, and historic castles. Indulge in the serene Alpine wilderness during your stay at one of Lake Maggiore’s tranquil and luxurious resorts.
Sail from Venice to the storied Murano Island to see the region’s famed glassblowers at work. The island has long been known as Italy’s glass art capital, noted today for exporting glittery glass beads and elegant chandeliers. The community of artisans began to blossom after the glassblowers were required to move there from Venice in 1291, for fear of fires in the city’s wooden buildings. The delicate process of glassblowing has existed for millennia, and these island artisans are keeping the tradition alive.
Get a taste of Greece-away-from-Greece, as a local guide escorts you through the well-preserved ancient Greek temples of the historic city of Paestum. The temples date back to as early as 450 B.C., named after and built to honor Greek gods like: Athena the Goddess of Wisdom and War, Poseidon the God of the Sea, and Hera the Queen of Gods and Goddess of Marriage and Birth.
If you’re on the mission to find the best pizza in Italy, head to the place where it all started. Naples is often credited as the birthplace of pizza. The pizza we know and love today with tomato sauce, cheese, and toppings is said to have been invented by baker Raffaele Esposito in Naples in the late 1800s. The story says that Italian King Umberto I and Queen Margherita visited Naples and asked the baker to make them a pizza with tomatoes, mozzarella, and basil. This pizza is still known today as “pizza margherita.”
On your way from Rome to Naples, visit Montecassino. Discover the renowned Montecassino Abbey, founded by St. Benedict in the 6th century A.D. and occupied by monks for over a dozen centuries. This sacred place houses the relics of St. Benedict and his sister, Saint Scholastica. The abbey is situated among majestic mountains, and overlooks the town below. The abbey has been rebuilt several times throughout its history, most recently after WWII. Montecassino became famous during the battles that took place here during World War II, when the abbey was bombed and destroyed.
Reprinted with permission from - Collette