As summer approaches, we take vacations that create memories. While I watched a chef make mozzarella cheese on a food show recently, I immediately surrendered to my memories when I first learned to make mozzarella cheese on my June Italia trip a few years ago.
I had the chance to go with a group on a tour through Italy. Although I don’t recommend the short 2 week notice of pre-planning before departing like I did, I am glad I went. I am grateful to have many sources available to help me organize my own trip quickly and safely.
|Amalfi Coast, Positano, Italia|
Before the Trip
With two weeks of planning, do we really have the time to read and learn everything about our chosen destination? No worries, it is fun to absorb in-the-moment sights too. I am lucky to know so many people globally who want to help me on my trips. Thank you to these traveling friends.
Two travel tips before my trip departure:
Repeat this: Passport, tickets, and one bag. This is what you really need on your trip.
- One, I keep my passport current.
- Two, I learned to pack light with one small suitcase and personal bag. I take old things of which I don’t care if they should disappear and shop in the $1 aisle of stores for items I don’t have before the trip.
One example of a challenge that I found before this trip was knowing which online airfare specials to steer clear of and how, where, and when to change international air itineraries during the trip. Yes, we do need to be careful. Timing is essential and reduces our anxiety.
Italia Trip Memories
One of my favorite memories is when we were invited to make our own Italian dinner somewhere in the Sorrento countryside after our early evening drive along the Amalfi coast of southern Italy. Yes, I fell in love with this other coast of steep, jagged cliffs!
"Is it the other half to our Highway 1 south of Big Sur?"
I was lucky to be sitting in a motor coach to gaze at the scenery – something I am not able to do on my own self-drive trips.
|Host on the left in the pink t-shirt|
It is time for our Mozzarella party and dinner. We had a guided visit of an Olive Oil mill and a fun cheese demonstration under the direction of our hosts - we saw up-close how to make mozzarella.
We rolled out the dough, and layered it with fresh local ingredients of tomato sauce, cheese, salamis and marinated vegetables and slid the pizzas into the oven to bake. Now off to the large patio area to start drinking Italia wine!
We finished our evening eating our own pizzas that we prepared and with this local regional wine.
|Host on the right|
What really made this a fabulous fun evening for us?
- walking downhill on windy, dark path through the forest to where our hosts were located in this country area in the early evening,
- the up-close demonstration of making cheese while chatting with our hosts, making our own pizzas,
- or perhaps our family-style dinner, with our giggling and laughing sitting around large round wooden tables on a large covered patio where we ate the pizza and drank more Italian red wine
all items listed above ensured a constant laughter throughout the evening.
I met people who came from Australia, Canada, and USA on this trip. Many came on this trip simply to get away for a nice summer vacation while some had plans to meet up with their own Italian family discovering their family roots after our tour.
Each person has their own identity - story. We all had one thing in common, this one Italia trip.
We finished the evening with a shot of homemade limoncello before we returned to our hotel near Sorrento.
Dare I say this was a typical, fun Italian dinner for my new travel family of 30 people creating one of my best memories of Italia culture?
What is your favorite Italia memory? Share with us below...
“They say that there was no train between Venice and Austria. They built the tracks anyway. They built the tracks knowing that the train would come.” (From Under the Tuscan Sun)
Let’s keep building these tracks across the world, to bring the train to all of us to get acquainted locally!
~ The Fun Tour Guru
All images are mine or from another tour participant who forwarded to me - They not to be reproduced without permission.
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