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Buon Giorno! (hello!)

Seriously people I have no idea where to start. Italy was an “adventure!” (as my mom would have said).

Mat and I were gone for 12 days to the Northern Italy area, and really the only “touristy” place we went to was Pisa (with the famous leaning tower). We were on our way with a rental car, garmin, and language reference book in hand, traveling to Nesso, Como, Portofino, Santa Margherita Legure, Sestri Levante, Genova, Milan, and Lucca. We had a few challenges…..with our bank, no way to call internationally (we couldn’t get the phone calls to go through), and our garmin took us way out of the way sometimes (and sometimes down one way streets!).

Even so, trip was alot of fun and I was blown away by the beauty! I was definitely visually overwhelmed.
We found grocery stores and were able to read enough (and look at pictures-ha!) to figure out what food to buy. Both places we stayed were condos and had kitchens–eating out was super expensive so this helped alot. When we did eat out the food was awesome!

The people in Italy were very nice and seem to focus alot more on relationships than we do. I literally saw ONE person on a cell phone the whole time I was there. People spent more time with each other in person and not on the phone. I loved that! They also take breaks during the day–from noon to 3:30, many things close. (this is called “reposo”). They have happy hour around 5 in bars and cafes, with wine/beer and pastries, then dinner late. People were very fashion conscious—everyone dresses up. Lots of tall, high heeled boots, black sweaters and coats. Mat and I felt a bit underdressed most of the time. I noticed many people walking and riding bikes, and I think I saw one person who was overweight. The only bad thing…..lots of smokers. That was very sad to me.

The craziest thing to me was that the roads were extremely narrow and had insane curves and sharp turns! People also drive like they are on a speedway–all day! The funniest thing though was we didn’t see accidents like we do here. The ONLY one we saw was in the parking lot of a rest stop.

I’m really excited to share these…it was so hard to choose what to post. There are so many! If you ever go, ask me and I can tell you what we did. 🙂

i-6View of the swiss alps from the airplane…
i-8Mat leaving our first “flat.” This building was built in the 1600’s!
i-2-2Me! Mat is learning to use the camera. Yay!
i-53View of Lake Como.
i-52Waterfalls near our apartment.
i-56A little grocery store we shopped at (Panificio Alimentari). I had these yummy breakfast bars called “fruit and form.”
i-66The roads were so narrow! Can you believe 2 cars fit on this?
i-23Mat helped this fisherman get a fish out of the water. He was super nice and knew a little english. 🙂
i-79I loved the fog here. I thought it was so “dreamy.”
i-99YUMMY pizza here! Our place was in this building above the shops.
i-94Everyone hangs out laundry. No dryers here.
i-142The water was beautiful!
i-147This is someone’s home…can you believe it? Built right into the side of the rock.
i-160Cute little grannies!
i-194Leaning tower….
i-205I love trees….this was to our drive to Lucca. I thought they looked like a painting!
i-213Town of Lucca.
i-267Kitty checking out the action below.
i-298Mat was very nervous with me on the edge! That is the mediterranean sea behind me.
i-329Statue of Saint Margherita.
i-338I was in LOVE with this shop.
i-342How cute is this pup?!
i-399Huge city of Genova….we got lost here alot thanks to my garmin.
I shot this from the car as we were leaving! Notice the bell tower…every town has them to let people know the time. I thought this was cool.

  • Beth Caporaletti - These are stunning. Seriously.

  • Keenan - I want to go to Italy now!!! Your pictures are fantastic. I particularly like the ones of the grannies and the man walking with his hand on a younger mans shoulder. These are wonderful, thank you for sharing!

  • Kathryn - WOW. These are amazing. And beautiful. And fabulous. It looks like a wonderful time.

  • Tara - Your drive to Lucca….AMAZING! You are right, it looked like a painting and not a picture. I love the food shots, the one of you on the edge, you just look happy!, but overall they are incredible! thanks for sharing and yes, Brad and I plan on going next year so we will be using your expertise for sure! 🙂

  • Jennifer Hurst - Just gorgeous, Juliet! Makes me miss Italy even more now! Thanks for sharing, and can’t wait for next weekend!

  • Sarah Bradley - Juliet, you are so lucky to be able to have such beautiful photos for lasting memories! You are inspiring me to get a camera and start!

  • Gina Calvin - I smiled the whole time I was looking at these pictures! God has given you an amazing gift and He has created such a beautiful world for you to photograph! I can’t pick a favorite…too many.

  • Ann - Juliet!! These are INCREDIBLE!!! I honestly got an adrenaline rush of excitement from looking at them. I LOVE Italy so so much and these photos so perfectly capture so many wonderful things about it. BELLISIMO!!!!!

  • Amy Clifton - Gorgeous, gorgeous, gorgeous! Love these…what an amazing trip!

  • Tara - I am incredibly jealous – these are stunning captures of a country that is dear to me and one where we will take our dream vacation one day! The photos are amazing – this is exactly the types of places Rod and I would travel to – little cities off the beaten path…eat in grocery stores, mingle with the locals, etc…you got a wonderful experience and very fulfilling vacation traveling this way. LUCKY!!

  • Amanda Hoeft - i dont know why i even live in the united states any more. i think i love italy!

  • Julie Hayes - These are wonderful pictures Juliet! Thanks for sharing them! My favorite was the kitty looking out the window! The timing needed to capture that! The views and scenery were incredible! I felt like I was right there with you! Glad you had such a good trip!