Villa Palagonia: the enchanted mansion of monsters

At a first glance, Villa Palagonia in Bagheria, to the east of Palermo, could be a villa like any other. But walk further into its gardens, and you will enter into the strange and mysterious world of Francesco Ferdinando Gravina II, the eccentric 18th century Prince of Palagonia. The villa was constructed on behalf of … More Villa Palagonia: the enchanted mansion of monsters

Benevento’s jewels: The Holy Wisdom Church and its cloister

(This blog was originally posted by ItalianGems. If you are interested in reading more like it, follow me at https://italiangems.wordpress.com/ ) I had a free weekend in August so I was planning to book a few nights near the seaside in Puglia or southern Lazio. However, after discovering that nearly all the hotels along the coast … More Benevento’s jewels: The Holy Wisdom Church and its cloister

Villa Farnesina: a small but perfect Renaissance gem

Villa Farnesina is one of my favourite spots in Rome. Visitors I take there are always enchanted, but never overwhelmed, because it is relatively small yet truly stunning. I would recommend this Renaissance villa along the Tiber as the perfect way to start a relaxing or romantic weekend. Be careful though– it is only open from … More Villa Farnesina: a small but perfect Renaissance gem