Greetings from Sunny Rome!

We just got some news from our colleague Andrew, who is back in Europe visiting his family and enjoying sites without the crowds.

“After 2 weeks of quarantine, we are now free to wander. The 2 weeks were not hard to pass when you have relatives and friends coming to visit you all the time, delicious food cooked by your family, and a lovely pool to kill the heat of the day.

The flight experience was curious and very emotional. It was a shock to see empty terminals and planes. Despite all my years in the industry, I have never experienced something like this.Empty terminals, empty flights, it was not hard at all to maintain social distancing. My family and I felt very safe as a result of the precaution taken by airport authorities to limit contact with strangers. I would actually say that I have never traveled in such a clean environment.

We flew Calgary to Toronto, on WestJet with 90 people on board. We connected Toronto to Rome with Air Canada and the flight had only 50 people onboard. Clearly passenger volumes have dropped.

We spent our first day outside of quarantine eating a lot of ice-cream and visiting the St. Callisto Catacombs, a fantastic archaeological site dating back to the 3rd century AD. It has been an eye-opener to see sites without the usual crowds of people.

We are now resting and spending time inside, eating fish at my father’s place. We will soon be out again walking through the romantic and narrow streets of the eternal city. We plan to go out for dinner tonight to a nearby Pizzeria. We shall drink a glass of fresh Prosecco thinking about you.

Now that we are out of quarantine, finally, our vacation can start. On our agenda, some shopping tomorrow, Sardinia island for a week, a weekend in Naples, and Ischia Island (Capri’s sister island, google it you will be amazed).

Happy sunny days to everyone! I will be back in August and will be happy to help you plan your future travels.

Ciao for now”


Zafferana Etnea’s Volcanic Past

Departing early we made our way to Zafferana Etnea to find our local mountain and naturalist guides. This town has frequently been rebuilt after the volcanic activity in the region and the latest threat was in 1992 when the volcano threatened to erupt yet again. We began our journey through this incredible landscape in the lava cave and continued up the 2500 meter cable car ride to reach the summit craters and the big caldera of Valle del Bove.

After lunch, we were lead to the scenic Monte Serra vineyard, nestled on the slope of an extinct volcanic crater located at about 500 mt (1,640 feet), a true landmark for the area. Back at the bottom of the vineyard, we headed into the traditional “palmento”, a spectacular lava stone vinification hall dating back to the 18th century, one of the best preserved on Etna. What an incredible day!

Siracusa Gastronomic Walking Tour

We started our evening with gastronomic and cultural discoveries as our guide walked us through the secrets of ancient Siracusa. We visited authentic family Tavernas hidden in little streets of Ortigia. This perfectly combined wine and food as we walked through the most breath-taking monuments of old city. Piazza San Rocco, Piazza Duomo, Santa Lucia church, Piazza San Giuseppe, Jewish district, Piazza Archimede and many more. We stopped for dishes from traditionally cooked fresh fish and typical Sicilian appetizers to unrepeatable homemade Sicilian pastries accompanied by fragrant Siracusa wine and liquors!


The streets of this ancient city are so narrow I can hold up the walls on both sides. This made it easier to defend the city as tanks were too large to drive in. The cathedral is the main gathering point and markets, restaurants and shops surround it. We stopped at one of these restaurants for Andrew’s daily treat!

We’ve been swimming in the Mediterranean, making new friends and enjoying great wine and cuisine, can’t wait to see what tomorrow brings.