My new favorite European retreat - Lake Como and the lakes region (in photos)

My new favorite European retreat - Lake Como and the lakes region (in photos)

We visited Lake Como last year in April and loved it so much we went back again in the fall. If you're not familiar with the area, northern Italy is an incredibly beautiful place and quite special to me. I studied abroad in Turin, Italy and have always had a love for Italy and Italian culture.

When I first visited Lake Garda I knew I would be back to that area again. Why? Because it's incredibly stunning. Pictures truly cannot do this place justice, and I am astounded every time we go. I love the drive from Stuttgart; we head south from Germany, down through the Alpine regions in Austria or Switzerland, and descend into a mediterranean climate with palm trees and a completely different scenery.

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Photo Tour of Lake Como - Italy

Photo Tour of Lake Como - Italy

A Weekend Trip to Menaggio, Bellagio, and Varenna

Lake Como is worth the hype. George Clooney, I get it. I would happily live in one of those villas for the rest of my life. I don't know why I go to cities when amazing places like this exist. Combined with the beautiful Italian architecture and with the Mediterranean feel it just doesn't get any better. We drove south from Stuttgart, Germany and drove right through Switzerland and into Italy. It's amazing how much the scenery changes. Going from farmlands and an Alpine type of climate to a more humid and warmer climate with palm trees and completely different landscaping. It's surreal. 

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6 Great Reasons to Visit Florence

6 Great Reasons to Visit Florence

Firenze. It just rolls off the tongue. And what a beautiful city to visit. Churches, art, statues and beautiful facades at every corner. The old town is huge with winding streets and narrow cobblestone alleys unfit for cars.

I love this place. I visited back in 2006 when I studied abroad but don't remember it being so beautiful. Maybe it was because I had been living in Italy for so long at that point that I was immune to the beauty. 

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Bardolino, Italy: Wine, Scenery, and the Laid Back Italian Life

Bardolino, Italy: Wine, Scenery, and the Laid Back Italian Life

Near Verona, Italy is one of Italy's most notoriously stunning lakes; Lake Garda. Seated in the north near the Dolomites and nestled partly in the Alps, the views all around the lake are the type of thing that poet's dream of. We visited for a very short day Bardolino, a small town along the eastern side of the lake and also home to the famous bardolino wines.

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How To Eat Gluten Free In Northern Italy

My parents recently hopped on a nice long flight over from Alaska. My mom has celiac, meaning that she cannot have anything with gluten in it (such as wheat, barley, rye). By now most people have heard of gluten intolerance or celiac so I won't go deeply into the details here. So when my mom mentioned she wanted to go to Italy, I began searching restaurants and places we could go that have gluten free dishes. When I began my search my assumption was that Italy isn't exactly the best place for someone with celiac, but from what I discovered I couldn't be more wrong.

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The Charming Town of Limone in Lake Garda, Italy

The Charming Town of Limone in Lake Garda, Italy

Last year I wrote a post about how much I loved Lake Garda, the northern Italian lake I visited with my sister. This lake is amazing, and although I haven't been to Lake Como I would bet they would be fighting for first place in the amazingly beautiful department. This place is gorgeous in nature, and the towns that dot the lake each have their own charm and uniqueness about them. 

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Looking Back At My Study Abroad Experience In Italy (with photos)

Looking Back At My Study Abroad Experience In Italy (with photos)

I was going through some of my old cd's today to try to find music to add back to my computer (I can't believe I still have all my CD's, hah). I have about a million CD's from when I was a kid that I never labeled so it's always a surprise when I pop in the disc. One of the them ended up having some of my photos from when I studied abroad in Italy in 2006. I thought I had lost all these photos after having my house robbed shortly after I got back from studying abroad. 

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