23 Dec
Treia, Macerata, Marche Italy

Meandering round Le Marche: Tuscany’s interesting neighbour

Le Marche is a province in east-central Italy with wonderful vineyards and golden grain fields in a rolling landscape topped by crumbling castles. Sheep, undulating ridges into the distance, and old men working in the sunshine, an authentic Italy that’s disappearing from other parts of this land. It is what Tuscany must have felt like thirty years ago, before it was discovered.


 

26 Jul

Three delicious Le Marche local dishes

Unlike the more popular neighbouring regions of Umbria and Tuscany, Le Marche remains much less well-known and tourist free. Comprising of both mountains and the sea, Le Marche is home to a varied cuisine that is as distinct as it is delicious.

Take a look at three delicious Le Marche local dishes.

Crema Fritta

On the outside crema fritta – fried cream – doesn’t sound too appealing. However, crema fritta is the vital ingredient into what makes many a legendary Italian dish so distinct tasting and delicious.

You can even eat crema fritta on its own. The cream is cooked and is stored in the fridge overnight. It is then coated in egg and breadcrumbs and is deep-fried on skewers.

Crema fritta is best eaten alongside a glass of crisp sparkling red wine known as Vernaccia.

Ciauscolo

Ciauscolo is a smoky pork sausage that is given a rich and deep flavour with garlic, fennel and vino cotto. Vino cotto is a non-alcoholic ‘cooked wine’ that possesses a unique flavour that is both sweet and sour.

In Le Marche, ciauscolo is typically served on toast or with a hunk of rustic bread.

Brodetto all’Anconetana

This mouth-watering fish soup is traditionally made with 13 different types of shellfish and fish, each of which supposedly represents each person at the Last Supper. Brodetto all’Anconetana is a tomato-based soup, which is rich with fresh flavours of the sea.

In the autumn the annual Brodetto and Fish Soup Festival takes place in the beach resort of Pesaro.

The perfect accompaniment to Brodetto all’Anconetana is a crisp and tangy glass of Verdicchio, one of the region’s most famous wines.

 


 

09 May

Luxury villa with great views in Le Marche – Casa della Maddalena

Vintage Travel is delighted to announce the arrival of Casa della Maddalena to our Le Marche portfolio of top quality villas all with private pools. This immaculately-restored country home makes the most of its rural setting. Views span out from the lush nearby valley, across the Sibilline Hills and out towards the idyllic rural landscape that makes up central Italy.

Up to six guests can sleep in absolute comfort in Casa della Maddelena’s three bedrooms. A children’s room with bunk beds makes Casa della Maddalena a great choice for families. This fine country house has been recently restored in a stylish way that tastefully clings to traditional features of its 19th century roots.

An open-plan living and dining room emphasises the villa’s uncluttered and spacious interior. Guests can really spread out and relax in Casa della Maddalena and take advantage of WiFi, its enviable location, the terraced gardens and an incredible private pool.

As grand and stylish as Casa della Maddalena might be on the interior, it is equally as desirable outside. A huge swimming pool is the obvious focal point for guests to gather, relax and have fun. Though the house’s beautiful terraced gardens, barbecue area and dining terrace also beckon guests.

With the hilltop village of Gualdo just 4 kilometres from Casa della Maddalena, groceries and other amenities can be purchased conveniently. Being famed for its hilly, verdure and undiscovered landscapes, the countryside surrounding Casa della Maddalena is crying out to be explored. Taking a lazy stroll down a rural track through fields and along the valleys under the azure and cloudless skies is a privilege that is there for the taking in this stunning region of central Italy.

For families wanting a day on the beach and guests yearning to breath in some salty sea air, the Adriatic Sea and its fabulous sandy beaches are just an hour’s drive away.

If discovering medieval Italian architecture is a high priority on your holiday itinerary, then you simply must make visiting the town of Ascoli Piceno part of your agenda.

This beguiling town in southern Le Marche has been cited as being “a place you can see in a day yet never forget.” Asides a main square that has to be one of the most elegant and splendid squares in the whole of Italy, Ascoli Piceno has many historical and architectural-inspiring sites that manage to captivate even the most culturally-blasé of tourists.

Luckily for those staying at Casa della Maddelena, Ascoli Piceno is only 65 kilometres away.

You can stay at Casa della Maddelena from May until September. For more information, prices, availability and booking to stay in this fine country home in the heart of Italy click HERE.

 


 

23 Sep

Why you should visit Tolentino in Le Marche

Tolentino – A humorous art inspired ‘must see’ in the heart of Le Marche. Set within a landscape of lush rolling hills of the valley of the Chienti, the medieval town of Tolentino is one of those ‘must see’ towns of Le Marche.

Here’s why you should visit Tolentino in Le Marche –

One of Tolentino’s most outstanding highlights is its magnificent Basilica, which houses the extravagant Giottoesque frescoes a striking 14th century gothic masterpiece, which has been cited as being on of the most remarkable works of art in Le Marche.

Dating back to the Paleolithic era, this particularly fertile stretch of Italian coastline is home to several ancient tombs that date back to the 8th and 4th centuries BC.

Asides its spectacular basilica, another distinctive pleasure of visiting Tolentino is trying to solve the riddles that lie in the multiple clock faces on one of the most ancient medieval clock towers of the Le Marche region of Italy. This fascinating and highly amusing way to accompany an ice-cold beer in an al fresco bar is located in the grand Piazza della Liberta, Tolentino’s main square.

To continue a mind boggling and intellectually stimulating experience of Tolentino, a visit to the International Museum of Caricature and Humour in Art is wholly recommended. This thought-provoking and highly entertaining museum is situated in the Palazzo Sangallo and houses a collection of more than 3,000 pieces of works from artists around the world.

Augmenting its dedication to be a city known as portraying humorous insight into humour in art, Tolentino holds the International Biennial of Arts Humour each year. What has been dubbed as being one of the most prestigious cultural events in Le March, this truly unique festival is a colourful and playful myriad of cartoon competitions, large and small art exhibitions and many fun and humorous art-related events.

What started off relatively humbly in 1961 is now a huge event that is visited by thousands of people from around the world and has certainly conquered its quest to promote and popularise caricature and humorous art.

To cap it all, Vintage Travel has a wonderful luxury villa in Tolentino, Villa Orizzonti which is pictured above.


 

21 Mar
art courses in Le Marche

Art courses in Le Marche

Nestled in the heart of Italy, the region of Le Marche brags some of the most stunning countryside this beautiful country retains.

With vineyards stretching as far as the eye can see, bordered by a backdrop of the snow-capped Sibillini Mountains, verdurous rolling hillsides, fertile woodlands and pastoral pastures scattered with the cheerful colours of flowers, fruit trees and fauna, Le March has long been a favourite location to inspire and stimulate artists from all over the world.

Given its ageless capabilities of prizing the very best from a painter’s brush, Le Marche is home to plenty of painting holidays and art workshops.

Offering art courses in Le Marche is The Retreat, a family-run business which provides courses for painters of all abilities to relax, take in the sheer beauty of this stunning Italian region and be inspired. Ran by John, a professional English artist and art tutor and Jana, who is an exceptional cook, The Retreat offers art courses in Le Marche for individual painters, couples and groups.

So that artists are inspired to their optimum, The Retreat puts on seasonal themes, and in the spring the landscape theme includes an emphasis on painting the sunflowers, olive groves and vineyards, when they are at their most visually spectacular.

From 7 – 14 April 2012, The Retreat is hosting a seven-day intensive course called ‘Life Drawing: The Human Figure’. The course is aimed at enhancing drawing skills as well as engaging in techniques used by the Renaissance artists.

From 28 April – 5 May 2012, there will be a seven-day ‘Printmaking’ Course, whereby students will be introduced to the process on printmaking, using traditional printing techniques.

From 19 – 26 May there is a seven-day ‘Introduction to Painting’ course available, designed for anyone wishing to take up painting for the first time, or for painters who feel they are a little ‘rusty’. The course will cover many aspects and different painting techniques, including water colour, gouache, oil painting and acrylics.

Although it is during the ‘Painting the Italian Landscape’ course that students will be able to fully appreciate the extent of the beauty of Le Marche. Held from 30 June – 9 July 2012, this ten-day course will provide artists with the opportunity to paint the area’s many romantic, charming and breath-taking assets.

For more information about art courses in Le Marche at The Retreat, visit lemarcheretreat.com. And for some breathtaking luxury villas in Le Marche, just click on the link.

 

 


 

13 Jul

Three of the best campsites in Le Marche

Le Marche is one of the greenest and prettiest corners of Italy, which is blessed with kilometre after kilometre of panoramic hillsides, peaceful valleys and quant and quirky villages.

Because of its enviable natural beauty and and equally enviable climate – particularly in the summer – you are never far away from a campsite in La Marche. Here are three of the best campsites in Le Marche…

Camping Perticara

Situated between verdurous hills laden with wild and fragrant flowers and the wild ocean with sun-baked beaches, Camping Perticara offers a wealth of peace, beauty, nature and culture. Owned and run by a friendly Dutch couple, this three-star, well facilitated campsite stretches over eight hectares and comprises of 70 pitches.

The pretty and interesting village of Perticara, which is plentiful of shops, bars and restaurants, is accessible from the campsite by foot. The service, facilities, views, amenities and activities in close proximity of Camping Perticara are all justifiably worthy of a mention, and visitors to the campsite are rarely disappointed.

For more information and availability about Camping Perticara visit campingperticara.com.

Camping Girasole

Situated on the waterfront of the Costa del Mar Adriatico near to the town of Ancona, the vibrant and cheerful Camping Girasole can be found. This popular campsite consists of 60 square metre pitches and includes all the facilities associated with modern campsites, including showers, laundry services, a children’s playground and a shop and restaurant. But where this campsite really excels is its large terrace that overlooks the sea, for evenings dedicated to discos, shows, theatre, cinema and music. There is also a Mini Club held at Camping Girasole that is organised by professional entertainment personnel, which can entertain the kids with shows, activities and sports events.

In fact, so well equipped and entertaining is this campsite for all the family that you won’t need to leave the Camping Girasole during your stay there. For more information visit campinggirasole.it.

Camping and Club Internazionale

Known as the ‘last oasis in the centre of the Adriatic Coast’, this four star campsite is located amongst a warren of pine, oak, beech and oleander trees. Amongst this natural beauty lies a feast of modern features and facilities, including a swimming pool, pizzeria, snack bar, news vendor, cyber café, video games room, fruit and vegetable market and tobacconist.

Camping and Club Internazionale is not given its four stars for no reason and one of the many features that gives the campsite that ;extra edge’ is the walking excursions the campsite puts on that provides visitors with walks across this breath-taking area with an official Conero Nature Reserve guide, for no extra cost.

For more information about Camping and Club Internazionale in Le Marche visit campinginternazionale.com.

If you don’t fancy ‘roughing it’, but want all the delights of Le Marche, why not consider Casale Urbania? This luxury 4 bedroom villa in Le Marche is perched on a hillside and offers stunning 360° views of the Metauro valley below.


 

20 Dec

Rimini Italian Food Festival 2011

Without waiting for the onset of spring and summer, a trip to the popular seaside resort of Rimini on Italy’s Adriatic coast in mid-February may be just the destination to wane those late-Winter blues. Aside from its many impressive Roman ruins, a 15 kilometre long, sandy beach and a seaside promenade lined with bars, restaurants and nightclubs, Rimini is home to one of the most spectacular and renowned festivals dedicated to the food and drink industry in Italy.

Make sure you visit Rimini when next in Italy

From 19 – 22 February 2011 the Italian town of Rimini will blend traditional Italian gastronomic tastes, rites, trends and eating out round the clock. This huge event devoted to representing the entire food, beverage and seafood market requires a whopping 85,000 square metres of exhibition space. Although with more than 1,000 food and drink companies exhibiting their wares, it is no wonder this simply delicious food festival requires such vast expanse of exposition space.


 

04 Oct

What to do in Le Marche – A tumultuous history amidst a peaceful landscape

Lying to the east of central Italy in between the Adriatic Sea and the tall Apennine mountains is the area of Le Marche, translated into English as “The Marches”. Unlike many coastal resorts in mainland Italy, La Marche is rarely overcrowded and has managed to retain a tradition, culture and heritage that has stood halted for years, unaltered by the insatiability of tourism and development.

Sunflowers in Le Marche

Late summer and early autumn is a good time to visit Le Marche as the relentless heat of high summer has passed replaced by a refreshing breeze and a landscape bathed in the first tinges of autumn.


 

28 Sep

The Best Tourist Attractions in Kefalonia

The famous Myrtos beach of Kefalonia
Captain Corelli’s Mandolin Sites

Being the setting for Louis De Bernieres’s famous book Captain Corelli’s Mandolin, the island of Kefalonia witnessed a flood of renewed interest from Captain Corelli fans. It is of little surprise, with its splendid scenery and impressive historical buildings, that when a film was made of the book in 2001, John Madden, the producer, chose Kefalonia to shoot much of the movie. Most of the filming of the Captain Corelli’s Mandolin movie took place around the towns of Argostoli and Sami, making these particularly historical locations some of Kefalonia’s most sought-after tourist hotspots