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by Francesca Di Meglio
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Ischia Travel Guide
So, you're thinking about making the trip to Ischia? Here are some of the columns that Francesca Di Meglio, whose family comes from Ischia, has written about her favorite island and its neighbors:
5 Best Beaches in Ischia
Ischia, an island off the coast of Naples and near its more famous neighbor Capri, is a beach lover's paradise. There are fewer things I enjoy more than running my fingers through the sand (which is different depending on which beach you go to) and walking at the edge of the shoreline, so my feet just barely get wet.
5 Best Views in Ischia
There is no argument that Italy's Ischia, an island off the coast of Naples, is a stunner. Known as L'Isola Verde (The Green Island), Ischia is lush with vegetation and its mountainside serves as the perfect backdrop for the ocean.
Best Eats in Ischia
While you can go just about anywhere to get a good meal in Ischia (none better than at one of the native's homes), here are the places to savor some of the best Italian food you'll ever have.
Consider Taking a Trip to an Italian Farm
Agriturismo is the word Italians use to describe bed-and-breakfast-type residences on farms in southern Italy. These hotels are popping up all over the countryside in southern Italy, especially in places like Benevento, and Tuscany. The idea is to give tourists a tranquil setting in which to taste country living.
Daydreaming of Italy in the Spring
At this moment, I'm lying on my boyfriend Antonio's bed in Ischia, a small island off the coast of Naples. And it's a chilly yet sunny February afternoon. I've been coming to Ischia in the winter since I was 2 years old. But a few times I made the trek in April. Nothing is more beautiful than Italy - and especially Ischia - when everyone wakes from hibernation in the springtime.
From Italy with Love
Readers of this column know that I am working from Ischia, Italy, home of my ancestors, while I plan my upcoming wedding to Antonio, a native who I got to know through my cousin Fausto. My main goal with "Our Paesani" is to bridge the gap between Italians and their fellow countrymen spread out in the rest of the world - from Argentina to Africa, from the United States to Australia. Now, that I am in Italy for a bit, I thought I would fill you in on what is going on in the motherland.
Garden of Eden in Italy
In 2004, I was supposed to have my first date with my now boyfriend Antonio Gerenini - and our destination was going to be La Mortella, the lovely public gardens in Forio in Ischia. Having read all about it before traveling to Italy, I could hardly wait. But before I could get there, I had a serious accident that eventually resulted in three surgeries to my knee. I never made it to La Mortella - that is, until now. And I want to take you there, too.
Good Eats in Ischia
I just returned from another spring jaunt in Ischia, the small island off the coast of Napoli and neighboring Capri from which my family originates. I always come back with wonderful memories of my relatives, my boyfriend and his wonderful family and the natural beauty of the island. But it's the food that leaves the best taste. Ischia is after all the island, where "si mangia, si beve, e si fischia." ("one eats, drinks, and whistles"). If you ever get the chance to go to Ischia, here are some restaurants that will have you whistling too.
Greetings From Italy
The rain is falling in Italy, but not in my heart. I arrived in Ischia, an island off the coast of Naples, a few days ago for a month-long stay that will combine business with pleasure. Consider this the first of my postcards to you while I work and vacation in the homeland.
Get the truth about one of Italy's most popular islands - and its people - by reading my new weekly blog installments.
Live the Dolce Vita at Il Mosaico
Too often we eat simply to put fuel in our engine, to keep us going. We should also be eating, as the Italians do, for pleasure. Once in a while, I like to pretend that I have the time for a dolce vita, and I eat for the pure joy of it. When you decide to do this, you have to eat something extra special, something more than wheat toast and an apple. The tasting menu we devoured at Il Mosaico was the most dolce of all the dinners we've ever had.
A Love Letter to Napoli
If Napoli, Italy's southern capital, was a man, it would be the "bad boy" of every woman's dreams. As famous for its relatively high crime rate as for its breathtaking view of the Bay of Naples and the magnificent Vesuvio, Napoli is sensitive with an edge. Much like mischievous men who always get the girl in the end, such a place produces the best sort of contradictions -- fast and slow, sweet and sour.
Ischia invites you to step ashore and discover its luxuriant nature, its sumptuous flavours, its unique place in human hearts.
Tour Ischia from Home
It's that time of year again, when I start planning my next trip to Ischia to be with my fiancÚ Antonio and our friends, and family, who live there. This trip is going to be especially special because Antonio and I will wed in a civil service ahead of our church nuptials in Ischia in October and a vow renewal in the United States in November.
Travel Diary: An Italian American in Ischia, Italy
I've been back in Ischia, home of my ancestors and fiancÚ and the location of my upcoming fall nuptials, for a little more than a week. I thought I'd share my travel diary with you to give you an insider's look at life on a small island off the coast of Naples, Italy.
Travel Log: What Happens If You Get Sick or Hurt When Vacationing in Italy?
This is Francesca's first hand experience on just what happens if you get hurt or sick while on vacation in Italy. This three part article includes "Dark Days on the Green Island", "Live Nude Girls! At the Hospital?" and "My Italian Boyfriends Give Me Lots to Think about".
Visit Italy: A Southern Italian Treasure in Caserta
Just outside of gritty Napoli in Caserta lies Italy's version of Versailles. An emulation of the decadent French palace, La Reggia di Caserta is about the size of three soccer fields with 1,790 windows. Carlo III di Borbone, then-king of the two Sicilies, commissioned architect Luigi Vanvitelli to construct the palace in the mid-1700s.
Visit Italy: Travel like an Italian Celebrity
Practically all of Italy goes on vacation in August - and the country's most glamorous stars are no different. Celebrities have money and need to relax and pamper themselves, so it's always wise to take your travel cues from them. Here are some suggestions for itineraries from the rich and famous.
Where in the World are Antonio and Dante?
Antonio and Dante are having a great time looking for all things Italian. This week they are island hopping once again just off the coast of Naples. Can you figure out where they are?
Wine Making Unlocks Ischia's Culture
When the sun sets on summer, the people of Ischia, a small island off the coast of Naples, begin preparing for the vendemmia or grape harvest. Many families and friends invite each other to their vineyards and host a lunch, often served at long harvest tables or as a picnic. But before breaking bread, the guests and hosts work side by side to cut the grapes off the vines for wine making.
For even more scoop on Ischia (and fun photo albums), visit Di Meglio's Web site.
Next page: Restaurant and Hotel Recommendations
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