Italy is always a good excuse! I grew up watching Italian television and so I learnt the language, their culture, the love for food and it grew on me. I’ve always liked Italy.
Visited Italy several times already and this time it was a road trip in the Emilia-Romagna region (East side of the country), where San Marino is situated. We landed in Ancona and went for about an hour in the city. Next, we decided to see Rimini, which is about a hour away. For dinner we drove to my friend in San Marino and spent 2 nights there. Last on the list was Bologna, as it’s just 1h30 from San Marino. It was full and fun week-end.
Ancona was slightly disappointing, so we only drove around for about a hour, took some picture, had divine gelato and head off to Rimini.
Getting into Rimini was more refreshing as it has cooler vibe and it was quite pleasant to walk around. It’s known for being a tourist destination, being at the sea and knowing how to party. But we left a bit sad, as we couldn’t get pasta at the time we were there (6pm). So, we ended up with a slice of pizza.
One thing should be clear, pasta and food in general in Italy is something holy. It must be prepared in a specific way, eat at a precise hour and simple is best. You can’t just have pasta at 6 pm. First, around 7pm, you have “aperitivo”, a cocktail and some Italian pastas and then around 9-10 pm you have your pasta.
San Marino is the first and still standing republic in the world. Yes, you got that right, the first one ever. It’s run independently from Italy, but as it’s surrounded by Italy, so it clearly has some dependency. It has around 60 square meters comprising about 8 villages, with an estimated population of over 30,000. There are plenty of tourists in the summer and they mainly visit the old city center.
It’s also one of the wealthiest countries in the world in terms of GDP (per capita). Nonetheless, there was no sign of opulent richness, as you have in Monte Carlo, for example.
What stroke me the most was how calm it is, extremely green, non-pretentious and down to earth. We had a great time relaxing and soaking in the peaceful atmosphere. It’s worth knowing that you have a completely different experience if you go around with a local. We were lucky to have my good San Marinese friend to take care of us.
Last on the list was Bologna. I was excited to visit it and to eat some real ragu. I wasn’t disappointed, the city is beautiful and surprising. Most charming part was how old and very well kept the city is. I felt as if I was walking on the set of a movie. I was happy to be in the place where the first university was opened and soak in the culture and hot sun 🙂 I loved the city and the atmosphere and I think it’s a great city to see for a week-end.
- Best ever cappuccinos
- Best ever pastas
- Bets ever gelatos
- Best ever croissant ever had: nocciola in San Marino
- Bar Ristorante Savioli in the middle of no where, but in that area 🙂 is divine!
- Italians have a feel for design and are not afraid to use it
- The new Fiat 500 is pretty cool
- No research done, just walked around and it was great
- Going around with a local is pretty cool