Readers Tell Readers About Italy
& sleeps in Rome...
Rome we pinched pennies and stayed at a hostel - Gulliver's
House (an old converted house). It's unbelievably
clean and it welcomes all ages (we were a group of friends in
our 40's). We had one room with two bunk beds for four of us.
During the day they gave us a key for the room so we were able
to leave our belongings. This hotel is very close to the train
station (in a quiet area) and walking distance to the Colosseum.
Contact: Via Palermo, 36 00184 Rome
Phone: 064817680 Fax: 0648177007
Here's a couple of restaurants
we enjoyed in Rome and would like to share with other women.
We actually found the food in Italy to be wonderful everywhere.
Can't wait to return!
Al Giubileo Ristorante - Pizzeria
Via Palermo, 7 (angolo Via del Boschetto, 44)
They served great spaghetti, bruschetta, etc. Our bill for 7
was 178,500 lira including cappuccino, a couple of desserts
& a couple of glasses of wine. This place is cozy as well as
Ristotante Pizzeria Magna Roma
Via Milano, 47
These people were so hospitable. When they realized we were
a group of Canadians, they presented us with a complimentary
dessert pizza and rolled in a TV so we could watch our country's
final hockey game. The food was reasonably priced. It's a very
large, comfortable, yet casual place.
Judy, Ottawa, Canada
but not in August...
from missing the Big Heat, another major advantage of visiting
Florence any time other than August is that you have the chance
to visit the delightful Cappella Rucellai.
Located on the corner of Via della Spada and Piazza San Pancrazio,
it looks so much like the rest of the surrounding buildings
that you can walk right past it several times without noticing
(especially as it is only open two hours a day, from 10am to
12noon, Monday to Saturday).
Designed by Leon Battista
Alberti in 1462, the chapel contains a life-size replica of
the Sanctuary of the Holy Sepulchre in Jerusalem. There are
also the remains of a painting by Baldovinetti and a Christ
in varnished terracotta.
Roberta, Milan, Italy
Beware of Women
Carrying Babies in Italy...
travelling in certain areas of Italy such as Pisa or Rome, beware
of women who are lingering by souvenir stands holding babies.
They may be getting ready to rob you. Their babies are not real
babies -- they're dolls which the women will throw to you. You,
of course, will want to stop the (fake) baby from falling and
as you reach out to catch it, the women will snatch your purse.
E. Pessin, Port Washington, USA
Go to Cortona...
Cortona is located half-way
between Florence and Rome, but not on the railway. It's a heavenly
hill town with two good museums, very friendly, and a restaurant
(Il Teatro) where I had the
best meal I had in Italy (tortelloni with ricotta & spinach
in a truffle sauce). Not expensive, very friendly, with old
opera posters on the walls. This is a must-see and must-do experience!
Lyn, Regina, Canada
It is no accident, writes
cross-cultural expert Robert T. Moran, that the two most popular
and common expressions in Italy -- Mamma Mia! and Madonna --
refer to female icons. In Italy the woman is the backbone of
the family. This, combined with the renowned Italian love of
beauty, gives the role of women
a special place in the world of relationships.
(Source: Do's and Taboos Around the World for Women in Business,
ISBN 0 471 14364 2)
This respect for women doesn't always extend to female tourists.
Catcalls and an occasional pinch on the bum are not unheard
of in the big cities. You can usually cut down this unnecessary
attention by dressing like the locals (sunglasses, lots of black,
lots of attitude, shoes not sneakers, etc.) and ignoring the
men who try to get you to respond to them.
When a man just doesn't
get the message, answer loudly with the word, "Basta,"
which means "Enough!". I try to do this only when
lots of bystanders can hear. This shames the silly man and he
usually slinks away. If there is nobody else around I walk purposefully
and quickly trying to put as much distance as possible between
him and me.
in Cinque Terre...
1979 as soon as I get to Vernazza, Cinque Terre I make a bee
line for the beach and Gianni's
which is right on the little piazza, full of colour and life
at the sea. I get there around 12:30 so I get a front row seat.
Under yellow umbrellas, I drink cool, light white wine and order
my usual heavenly meal -- I start with linguine with pesto of
basil, pine nuts, garlic and parmesan cheese and pieces of green
beans and potatoes mixed in, then a casserole with layers of
potatoes, tomatoes and little fish seasoned with herbs all topped
off with a fruit salad or ice cream with Schiacchetra (local
dessert wine) poured over. The waiters are the same every year.
Whether younger or older, they enjoy their work, give good service
and are always charming and fun. Tel: 0187-821003. Closing day
is Wednesday, I think.
Bonus tip ...
Clothing prices tend to
be quite high in Italy. The "Gap" of Italy is, of course, Bennetton,
which has millions of stores in Rome, including two high-tech,
big new branches. One is on Via del Corso and one is on Via
del Tritone. And there's another in the Termini train station.
They sell underwear, kids clothes, as well as women's and men's
clothes. These tend to be hip and cool and more affordable than
most things in Italy.
(Source: Laura Flusche, www.urban-iconography.org
offering exciting women-friendly tour itineraries in Rome)
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