italy guide



As if it weren’t already enough to become the first Italian woman to travel in space, astronaut Samantha Cristoforetti went ahead and set the record for the longest single space flight by a woman, clocking in with 199 days and 16 hours on Expedition 42/Expedition 43 of the International Space Station in 2014-2015… And as if that still weren’t enough, she also became the first person to brew espresso in space.

Like several other astronauts before her, Cristoforetti has a documented love for science fiction, having openly expressed her fandom with references to Star Trek and The Hitchhiker’s Guide to the Galaxy.

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I am in Italy for three days before I make my way south to the Amalfi Coast. Amalfi. Three syllables that have, for years, occupied a liminal space of longing and romance and beauty in the primordial soup of my mind. I want that mediterranean blue refracting light into sky, onto skin. I want salt crystals drying on my back from long days of submersion. I want cliffs that tumble over themselves in their own hurriedness to make it down to the seduction of the sea. And finally, it’s now. Amalfi and I will meet.

Still, though, it’s with regret that I leave Rome (see my guide to 72 hours in Rome). There should be a name for the pack job I do at 12:30am the night before I depart for Positano: I am a highly focused, micro-efficient dervish, whirling a frenzy of order into my suitcase. I charge all my devices. I try to talk myself down from my pre-Amalfi high. In bed finally, I beg my mind to rest.


At 7am, only four hours of sleep under my belt, I begin the hurtling, winding journey from Rome’s Tiburtina station to Chiesa Nuova in Positano.

Read more and get the full guide here.


The bartender of Belmond Grand Hotel Timeo on how to make an Etna Spritz, best enjoyed with a view of Mt. Etna volcano.


How To Read The Menu In France, Italy And Spain - By Herb Lester

For those of you who like to travel and try out different cuisines, it’s important to know what you’re ordering. Not only that, it would be the best to order it correctly. Herb Lester Associates’ three-book set, “How To Read The Menu In France, Italy And Spain,” will make sure you always order correctly and avoid feeling embarrassed or offending your waiter while traveling.