Spectacular Capri – Southern Italy’s Isola Bella

Statue of Caesar Augustus at Monte Solaro. Photo, Paris + Plus

Lying at the southern edge of the Bay of Naples, beyond the Sorrentine peninsula, the rocky island of Capri has been renowned as a holiday destination for about two thousand years.  It’s an island of myths, Roman emperors and their infamous orgies, luxury yachts and the occasional A-list celebrity, but above all, the most spectacular vistas imaginable.

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BELLA BELLAGIO, THE JEWEL OF LAKE COMO

Beautiful Lake Como. Photo, TripHobo

Northern Italy offers a wonderful series of lakes, and Lake Como is generally regarded as the most spectacular of them all.  Its unmistakable upturned Y shape was carved out of a glacier that was forced to split into two by the mountain that stood in its path.  Today, the dramatic Dolomites surround the lake, with often a dusting of snow at the highest peaks visible even in high summer.

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A NIGHT AT THE OPERA—AT THE ROMAN ARENA, VERONA

‘Aida’. Photo, Paris + Plus

This year was the 96th season of opera to be held in the spectacular Roman Arena at Verona.  A little older than Rome’s Coliseum, it was built around 30AD during the reign of the Emperor Caligula, and was said to be capable of holding more than 30,000 spectators.  Its outstanding acoustics has ensured its popularity for centuries, with the first operatic performances taking place in the 1850s. 

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SIRMIONE, LAKE GARDA—HOME TO A MOATED CASTLE AND AN ENORMOUS ROMAN VILLA

Scaglieri Castle, the entrance into Sirmione. Photo, Paris + Plus

‘The pearl of islands!’ wrote the Roman poet Catullus in the 1st century BCE, describing the town of Sirmione, on the southern shore of beautiful Lake Garda in northern Italy.  Less than 40 kms from Verona and 150 kms from Venice, Lake Garda is ideally placed to visit one of the loveliest parts of northern Italy.

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