Sunday, April 13, 2008

Memories of Italy

Following on from my 'Memories of France' post; Paul has now scanned all the negatives of our 1990 holiday in Tuscany. I remember waiting for the coach to arrive in Peterborough, the nearest 'pick-up' point to Spalding. It was very late arriving and we still had to travel to London to pick up there and then on to Dover for the ferry crossing. The coach came from Llanberis and our two drivers were Welsh and chatted to each other in their own language. When we arrived at Calais our tour guide joined us, he was from Paris. Throughout the week we were also joined by local tourist guides, all Italian, of course. There was a constant stream of chatter from the front of the coach in three or four languages which was very entertaining if sometimes incomprehensible. We traveled overnight and the first thing I remember is waking up at 5a.m. on the Route Soleil and wondering why the world was suddenly bright yellow; it took me a few second to realise that we were driving by field after field of the most wonderful sunflowers on either side of the road as far as the eye could see. We passed through the border to Switzerland and stopped a while to admire the cool looking mountains including, just visible through the mist, Mont Blanc, then we were into Italy. A bad accident near Turin meant that the coach had to follow a longer route to our destination and we finally arrived at our hotel on the coast at Marina de Massa well after 10pm. the following day; my feet were swollen from the journey. Here are just a few of the photos we took during our 10 days there.

The doors of the Cathedral at Sienna

Palazzo Pubblico - Il Campo, Sienna

The Cathedral, Florence

The Ponte Vecchio, Florence, taken from the top of the Uffizi Gallery

Me, finding a quiet moment away from the crowds on the steps of the Battistero, Campo dei Miracoli, Pisa

The towers of the hill town of San Gimignano

The road from San Gimignano to Sienna in the Chianti region

Anfiteatro Romano, Lucca


  1. I have always wanted to travel to Italy so I have really enjoyed your photos. There is a wonderful movie called "Enchanted April" (1992) which features the transformation that four women go through while taking a retreat in Italy to get away from the challenges in their life. The cinematography was the beginning of my love for Italy.

    The field of sunflowers must have been so beautiful to see!


  2. gillian, Enchanted April is one of my all time favourite films, I just love it. I bought a copy of the novel last year in a cut price bookshop and keep meaning to read it - it has been on my 'to be read' pile for ages. Perhaps I will get round to it soon :)

    The sunflowers were wonderful.

  3. I would love to see Italy someday. Beautiful pictures! Llangollen looks so interesting too along with it`s famous sisters :)


  4. Lovely photos and they brought back some happy memories for me of a wonderful week spent in Florence with my daughter a couple of years ago, Siena was one of the places we visited. I'm another fan of 'Enchanted April' - it's a marvellous film, one of my all time favourites.