The prestigious Hanoi Museum of Vietnam is hosting a revolutionary exhibition centred on Raphael, the great Italian renaissance artist until the 31st October 2020. “Magister Raffaello”, is the latest project realised by Magister Art, PMI Innovativa (which aims to introduce Italian culture in an innovative virtual form to venues not normally accessible for exhibition of the original works of art).

The high technological results achieved in virtual reality, in fact, allow masterpieces that would not normally be available to a worldwide public to be viewed in all their complexity, as near as possible to the real thing. The development of this technology, in fact, means that great Italian art can be enjoyed and appreciated in ways that were not previously possible.

The initiative to exhibit at Hanoi has been backed by the Italian Ministry of Foreign Affairs and International Cooperation, the city council of Hanoi and the Italian business community operating in Vietnam. The Hanoi Museum was designed by German architectural firm GMP Architekten, and was inaugurated in 2010 as part of the celebrations of the city's 1,000th millenary.

The six exhibition rooms dedicated to Raphael will take visitors through “a living theatre”, recounting the the “Raphael story”, the places where he lived and worked and the artists, writers and philosophers of his era.

Visitors will be equipped with an APP in four languages (including Vietnamese) and there will also be a section dedicated to children.


Posted on 10 Sep 2020 by Editor

Restrictions and fears due to the epidemic have curtailed Italy's usual summer festivals, according to research carried out by the Trovafestival organization. Since the cautious re-opening of the 15th June, the summer festivals in programme this year have been reduced by a third.

However, according to Trovafestival, 101 cultural festivals have confirmed their plans to go ahead with live events. Four have announced they will hold their events in streaming and 90 festivals normally held in the spring will now hold their 2020 edition in September.

In normal times, thousands of cultural events involving art, literature, cinema, dance, music and theatre are held all over Italy, not only in the cities, but also in small towns, all followed by an enthusiastic and appreciative public.


Posted on 06 Sep 2020 by Editor

The results have been published of the annual election of Italy's 10 “Most Beautiful Borghi (historic villages)”. The Apennine town of Bobbio in Emilia Romagna, with its ancient Abbey of St. Colombanus, founded by the 7th century Irish monk, scooped this year's gold medal.

Second came Venzone in Friuli Venezia Giulia. This town, declared a National Monument in 1965, was tragically destroyed in the Friuli earthquake of 1976. However, thanks to the determination of the local administration, it was totally reconstructed exactly as it was before during the eight years immediately following the catastrophe.

Arquà Petrarca in Veneto, where the poet Petrarch spent the last years of his life was third.

Runners up were: Conca dei Marini (Campania) on the Amalfi Coast, Castiglione di Sicilia on the slopes of Etna, Castelmezzano in the Dolomites of Basilicata, Orta San Giulio on Lake Orta (Piemonte), Tellaro in Liguria and Panicale (Umbria).

The “Borghi Piu Belli d'Italia” organization was founded in 2001 by the Tourism Council of the Association of National Italian Municipalities to unite the collective forces of the numerous artistic and historic small towns with less than 15,000 inhabitants. It now counts 289 members.


Posted on 04 Sep 2020 by Editor

Most Italians have chosen to stay in their home country during the strangest summer holiday season in living memory, due to the Coronavirus emergency, according to data collected by Coldiretti (the national association of farmers).

This has been good news for many seaside and mountain resorts, which had lain empty through much of the spring. However, Italy's celebrated art cities, large and small, have suffered greatly from the drop in foreign tourists.

The Coldiretti poll revealed that 25% Italians stayed in their home region. Many took the opportunity to explore the many little known borghi (historic villages) and sample the local food products and wine. Italy is the uncontested world leader in wine and gastronomic tourism with over 5,000 certified local gastronomic specialities, 415 listed certified wines and 60,000 organic food producers, spread throughout the entire peninsula. The 24,000 farm holiday structures (agriturismo) have had a popularity boom, thanks to the fact that they are small units, surrounded by countryside, where social distancing can be easily maintained.

There has also been a boom of Italians returning to their roots. Small out-of-the-way villages have been unexpectedly revived by an influx of visitors returning to stay with their families of origin and rediscovering the attractions of a traditional “home-to-home holiday” with small speciality shops and traffic-free streets and piazzas, where children can play in safety.


Posted on 01 Sep 2020 by Editor



Posted on 14 Aug 2020 by Editor



A special trek to discover little known villages and beauty spots around Lake Bolsena (Lazio), Europe's largest volcanic lake, is programmed for the 20th August 2020. The route takes in several charming old villages and Etruscan archaeological sites, with accommodation in local b&bs.

Lake Bolsena itself contains fascinating archaeological remains. The submerged prehistoric village of Gran Carro, dating back to the 9th century BC, has produced a great number of antiquities and revealed what are believed to be the foundations of temples and other buildings. Underwater exploratory tours with guide are available from time to time for divers with certification.


Posted on 13 Aug 2020 by Editor


Despite the momentary drop in visitor numbers due to the present Coronavirus restrictions, the “Village Hotel” (Albergo Diffuso) complex of Borgotufi in Castel del Giudice, Isernia (Molise) can count itself as one of the most successful recovery programmes of an Italian village on the brink of abandonment.

In 2016, the villagers and the town council got together with a local entrepreneur to transform the many empty stone built houses and barns into modern accommodation for nature-lovers and visitors looking for a peaceful retreat. Preserving the authentic characteristics of the traditional village, some 25 accommodation units with all mod cons and facilities have been created, offering a total 100 beds, as well as a spa and wellness centre.

Activities include rafting on the Sarno River, guided tours of the nearby Samnite Theatre of Pietroabbondanza and the “Apple Museum” - the 35 hectares of abandoned fields surrounding the village which has been replanted as an organic apple orchard with 60 different varieties of apples.

Right now, it is an unparalleled open air astronomical observatory for viewing the night sky, with the help of a specially developed “Sky Map” to help identify the constellations.

Info: Tel. +39.0865. 946820

Posted on 10 Aug 2020 by Editor

The feast day of San Lorenzo (St. Lawrence) on the 10th August is traditionally the night for wishing on a star, as it coincides with the period of the annual meteor showers known as the Perseides, when “falling stars” can frequently be seen.

The ideal place for observing the phenomenon must be the Astrovillaggio (Star Village) in Val d'Ega, near Bolzano, claimed to have the “finest night skies” by Astronomitaly, an organization aimed at promoting tourism linked to astronomical observations.

The Astrovillaggio claims to be the first of its kind in Europe. Situated high in the unpolluted regions of the Dolomites, it offers visitors a unique experience of familiarizing with our neighbours in the solar system and the universe beyond. The “village” includes the Astronomic Observatory Max Valier di San Valentino in Campo di Sopra, the Peter Anich Solar Observatory and the Sentiero dei Pianeti (Trek of the Planets), with guided outdoor excursions for direct viewings of the night sky.

Info: Tel. +39.0471.610020/619560

Posted on 07 Aug 2020 by Editor

During the Covid19 lockdown work has continued on many of Italy's most famous archaeological sites. When Herculaneum re-opened in June 2020, visitor experience was enhanced by the re-opening of the House of the Deer, with important restoration work completed on the previously crumbling facade and the cryptoporticus decorated with brightly coloured still lifes of fruit and vegetables.s The domus takes its name from two sculptures of deer attacked by dogs which decorated the garden area.

Francesco Sirano, Director of the Park of Herculaneum, can also vaunt the re-opening of the 3-storey House of the Bicentenary, which was opened last year after a 35-year closure. The 600 sqm building, decorated with frescos of mythological scenes, is one of the most important Roman residences in the ancient city.

Info: Tel. +39.081.7777008/7324321

Posted on 03 Aug 2020 by Editor


The last word in thrills for “immersion travellers” are helicopter flights over the crater of Vesuvius and the lost cities of Pompeii and Herculaneum. So-called “immersion travel” is becoming ever more popular with independent tourists looking for unusual and in-depth experiences.

The growing request for more specialized travel experiences in Italy has been picked up by a number of tour operators, including Italian startup operation -, which offers independent travellers a wide range of exclusive tours to lesser known beauty spots and treasures of the Italian peninsula. They include tours in the iconic vintage Fiat 600, motor yacht tours of the Amalfi Coast, taste trips among Umbria truffles and SuperTuscan wines, exclusive visits of lesser known destinations such as Vinci, Chiavari, the wine hills of the Langhe, the medieval San Fruttuoso Abbey, the Barbagia Mountain park in Sardinia and many others.

Info: Tel. +39.0656567418

Posted on 30 Jul 2020 by Editor

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