Japan is the first cultural destination in the world

The Japan won the first prize as the favorite foreign destination for the cultural offer on the occasion of the Italian Travel Awards 2018 , the third edition of the Italian Tourism Oscar who has just held in Rome.

“In 2017 the Italians in the Rising Sun were 125,864, a great result that pushes us to aim higher and higher with the aim of making it a ‘must-to-do’ destination” , commented the Director of the tourism authority Japanese in Italy, Miyuki Iyoda. ” Surely Japan, with its fascinating and mystical allure, diversified landscapes, its living traditions – not least the culinary one – and the contrast with modernity and finally, the seasonal variety, entice us to return and discover its numerous characteristics ” .

Japan has for years been one of the first destinations chosen by tourists and is present in all the popular rankings drawn up by the most prestigious magazines and travel sites.

Its culture is undoubted. So different from the western one to fascinate anyone. To convey their cultural heritage even more to visitors, the Japanese have devised a program to involve foreigners in the first person, immersing them completely in the Japanese environment and lifestyle, a veritable Japan Experience that goes beyond the classic itineraries , offering cultural visits and unusual destinations.

Japanese culture is not just visiting a temple, but it is a cooking class, a whiskey tasting or a night walk. The traveler becomes the protagonist and discovers in an active and personal way the particularities and wonders of Japan. These “local” experiences also have extremely affordable prices, starting at 30 euros. And to say that Japan has the reputation of being an expensive country.

But that is not all. Culture also means living in the environments of the Japanese. The choice of accommodation can therefore make the difference. No hotels, but traditional houses that can be rented also in the big cities like Tokyo , Kyoto, Kanazawa and Fukuoka. A decidedly more economical as well as authentic solution.

To make the experience even more real in Japan there is a unique service, offered by Travel Angels . These “guardian angels”, whether they are Japanese or foreigners living in the country for years, are a real point of reference for the foreign traveler who does not know the language (one of the biggest obstacles for Japan for us Westerners).

Deep connoisseurs of the destination, they make themselves available to visitors to facilitate their travel experience, thanks to the precious suggestions and their support, acting as intermediaries with the Japanese world and culture. The language will therefore no longer be a problem, you will no longer lose yourself in the streets and you will not miss the train or the subway line, you will order the right dish at the restaurant without surprises and you can go deeper into any topic related to Japanese culture.

Giulianova, the sea of ​​Abruzzo with the Blue Flag

Giulianova is one of the most popular seaside destinations in Abruzzo . Moreover, for almost ten years it has continuously obtained the Blue Flag of the Fee for the purity of its waters.

The beaches of this destination on the Teramo coast are very busy in summer. The area where several hotels have risen over the last few years is the Lido area. Visitors to this resort come to us for its long equipped beaches and for the entertainment it offers. It is an excellent summer destination for those with families . There are hotels, residences and even campsites.

The sand is white, the blue sea. The beach is very large and protected by palm trees, it seems to be in some exotic locations.

But Giulianova also has a beautiful historic center to attract tourists. In 1400 the city played a very important role because, due to its strategic position, it was considered the border of Christianity and became a real fortress dedicated to the Virgin.

Today Giulianova Alta dominates from the top of its hill (less than 70 meters) the sea. It can be reached along the Salita Monte Grappa. Among the places of greatest interest there is the round tower called “Il Bianco”, the largest remaining of the remains of the ancient walls that surrounded the city. Since 2001, it has been the site of the archaeological section of the Civic Museum Pole, where the testimonies of the life of the Roman city of Castrum Novum Piceni, founded by the Romans around 290 BC at the mouth of the Batinus river, the today’s Tordino south of the city are preserved .

In the historic center there is also the Church of Santa Maria a Mare, whose dome is clearly visible in every corner of the city, the sanctuary of the Madonna dello Splendore, the Church of Sant’Antonio and the Chapel of the Bartolomei.

The tourist season in Giulianova kicks off with the International Festival of Music Bands and Majorettes , the most important festival of band groups in Italy and among the most successful in Europe, this year at its 19th edition, and which takes place at the end May and early June.

Italy of the “White Nights”: here are the small hours

Imagine a lot of people celebrating, live music in the squares, always open shops and museums, street food, exhibitions, shows and much more. In this ideal place some Italian cities are transformed at least once a year with ad hoc events and special evenings that allow residents and tourists to enjoy dozens of themed events under the stars .

These are the so-called ” White Nights “, free cultural events that usually take place between the beginning of summer and autumn, enlivening the evenings of our cities.

It starts on the first Saturday of July when the historic center of Udine hosts music, readings and shows combined with proposals and meetings in craft shops and shops. An opportunity to experience the Friulian capital on the first day of sales.

It is not white, but ” pink ” the most “busy” night of the summer, that of early July, between Rimini and Riccione . In the ” Summer New Year ” the Adriatic coast spreads the festive atmosphere thanks to concerts by Italian and international artists, street artists, parades, theater, music, puppets, fireworks on the sea, parties and disco parties.

In the month of August they are traditionally the holiday or art resorts to host huge open-air stages: from Champoluc in Valle d’Aosta (10 August) to Varazze (18 August), from Celle Ligure (21 August) to Ascoli Piceno (10 August). Worth noting is the ” Children’s White Night ” in Otranto on August 26th: until midnight in the square, educational workshops, shows, music, fairy tales, wooden toys and traditional toys will cheer up the hours of children.

Before organizing them in Italy, Rome usually has its “White Night” at the beginning of September: film shows, concerts, sporting events, plastic arts, music and theater with the streets of the capital enchanted by a magical atmosphere, a perfect blend of art and modernity.

From Rome to Milan , the city of fashion, where the “White Night” turns into ” Fashion Night “. In September, inside the famous boutiques of the Milanese city, musical and artistic events are organized, as well as DJ sets and cocktail parties.

The “Notte Bianca” of Lecce is famous in Puglia , between September and October. Inside the Baroque area there are exhibitions, markets and scattered tastings, shows, presentations and theatrical works. The initiatives are not concentrated in the heart of the city alone but also in the streets of the Salento nightlife , with shops open after sunset and shopping until late at night.

In each city its color, because in October Ravenna hosts its ” Notte Oro ” (inspired by the mosaics that made it famous) characterized by thematic routes, guided tours, museums and monuments open even in the evening.

A series of events that enhance the historical, cultural, social and artisan soul of the area animate the Sanità district of Naples in January . The streets are filled with good music with local artists, performances by Neapolitan comedians, guided tours and good food to learn about and appreciate the ancient neighborhood.

The green spirit is instead the essence of the ” Green Night ” that at the end of May-beginning of June invades the historic center of Rovereto with entertainment, installations, conferences and workshops and meetings dedicated to the environment, sustainability and innovation .

Do flight attendants observe you? Here is the reason

A cordial greeting accompanied by a welcoming smile and that rapid “photograph” from head to toe: did you too happen to get on a plane and feel squared by the flight staff ? Sorry to belittle our ego, but hostesses and stewards do not find us particularly attractive (or at least that is not the time to eventually express their interest …) nor are they looking for inspiration from our look. None of this. So why are they looking at us so carefully as soon as they get on the airplane ladder?

This is explained by the British newspaper ” The Sun “, publishing an interview with some members of a crew. The ritual requires that the crew is present to welcome us, wishing us a safe journey. But this custom conceals something quite different. There are in fact three features that stewards and assistants immediately notice by taking a look at the passengers.

The first, identifiable by movements and behaviors, is to find out if anyone who aboard has abused alcohol or taken illegal substances . It is not difficult to notice if someone is drunk at take-off and the staff must be prepared because the passenger could become aggressive at any moment. In this regard, Sjaak Schulteis, an assistant of Lufthansa Airlines , states: “If a passenger gets under the influence of alcohol or drugs, he may not even be allowed to fly.”

Another detail not negligible by the assistants is your physical form . In this case, it is essential to understand if during an emergency situation you might be able to help evacuate. “If I see someone muscular and physically fit I memorize their face and seat – declares a hostess in the interview with the Sun -. Then I ask in all discretion one of these people if she is ready to help us, if necessary “.

Third and final step is to identify the nationality of each passenger . In the event of an emergency, the crew must ensure that they speak their own language. “If someone does not understand English, they will not be able to understand the instructions,” says Sjaak. But how to recognize the origin of travelers? The glance is not enough, then the experience of the on-board team comes into play: listening to conversations and observing read newspapers.

How to find cheap flights

How are cheap flights ? This is the question that my friends often ask me and that’s why I decided to write this article. 
In fact, since I took advantage of the offer for Japan A / R at 285 euros , the way I search for flights and the most convenient airfares has changed a lot, since until recently it was limited only to enter the destination and the dates of departure and arrival in a search engine and to buy the first price that was shown to me.

Patience, constancy and above all flexibility

The password is patience. There is no magic potion to find low-cost flights, but first of all you have to try to look patiently from day to day: you do not get much research. 
If instead you have the constancy of devoting a few moments of your day to search for flights, sooner or later you will be rewarded. Try first of all to look directly on the websites of the companies, often come out very interesting rates. 
Another option are the flight search engines, which are now wasted on the web. 
My favorites are:

  • skyscanner
  • ITA matrix
  • Kayak

I’ll tell you right away: if you’re hoping to find an intercontinental flight at mid-August or Christmas holidays, starting from the nearest possible airport, with fewer stopovers and spending less than 300 euros, then do not try it either. 
It can happen to find it, in life everything is possible, but the probabiblities are close to zero. 
Instead, look for dates that are not fixed but flexible, preferring periods of low season, flexible airports and, why not, also flexible destinations. So try, try, try various combinations of routes, dates and airports.

In fact, a way to find lower fares is to look for airports different from those that we usually use. For example, often to buy a flight to South America, it is much cheaper to search the flight from Madrid than from Rome or Milan: prices often turn out to be lower than hundreds of euros, you can then, for example, reach Madrid with a low-cost.

Often I am asked how I choose the destinations for my travels and I answer that are the goals to choose me: the choice falls in fact largely based on the rates that I find for a particular destination. Why do not you try? It’s fun, do a search and eventually choose the one with the cheapest ticket you can find 🙂

Error-Making and Open Jaw

Let’s start with one at a time. 
What is an error-do ? Airlines to calculate the price of their airline tickets use algorithms that are not perfect, but are subject to errors. Here then, because of these errors sometimes come out extremely interesting rates, rates to be taken “on the fly”.
Keep in mind, however, that the errors-making, being real errors, are corrected by the airlines when they realize it: it is essential to be quick in buying, given that often these rates, just because of their nature, last a few hours . Then the company notices them, corrects them and goodbye tattered price. In any case, when we bought the ticket, this is a real contract, so even if it was a mistake, the airline is still obliged to respect it .

Where to sleep in Tel Aviv, the best neighborhoods to stay

This article is intended as a practical guide on where to sleep in Tel Aviv , providing a clear view of the best areas to stay , depending on what you are looking for.

Meanwhile, keep in mind that Tel Aviv is a small city, founded just outside the borders of the ancient port city of Jaffa, and most hotels are in an area that can easily be crossed by a short 30-minute bike ride.

This is to say that almost all hotels are located near the various points of interest for this reason I chose to divide the neighborhoods not only by geographical area, but also depending on the needs and pleasures of everyone.

Each aerial of Tel Aviv in fact has different characteristics , its advantages and disadvantages and this guide aims to make the choice a little easier.


If you do not want to read all this guide (if not go on reading), I stayed at ‘ Abraham Hostel Tel Aviv , which thanks to the friendly staff and the excellent location near many shops and bars is in my opinion one of the choices best !

Ideal for families (children love it) Tayelet is the seafront of Tel Aviv which stretches for about 5 km between the city’s port and Jaffa, the old city.

Ideal for those who love sports or for those who love to wake up looking at the sea, Tayelet is full of high-end hotels and media as it is based on tourists.

Among the eclectic style buildings and the “bauhaus” buildings, the Neve Tzedek Quarter , first abandoned and then returned to the limelight, is one of the districts where the artists moved in the 80s and is located just outside Jaffa. It is the ideal area for those visiting Tel Aviv for the first time.

Neve Tzedek is a quiet suburb whose historic charm is enhanced by colorful houses and skyscrapers in the distance where you will not be able to avoid being attracted by the pretty and quaint boutiques selling traditional products and local art galleries.

Here are also some points of interest in Tel Aviv: the Suzanne Dellal dance center , the Nachum Gutman Museum and the Rokach House where you can learn something about the history of the neighborhood, once an enclave of the Jewish population.

What to See in Cairo and 3 Unmissable Tours in the Surroundings

The Capital of Egypt is a chaotic city, with a lot of traffic, but cheerful and full of life, and despite the considerations that can be done on security, there are many things to see and do in Cairo .

Yet, many tourists who arrive or leave for the cruise on the Nile have little time in this fascinating city: believe me, you could not make a mistake worse!

The whole region around the city has been continuously occupied for over 6,000 years and is rich in history and culture (both modern and ancient). For this reason it is worth taking at least 3 days for all things to see in Cairo: 2 to devote to the city and one for a trip around!

Foreword: is Cairo a dangerous city?

If you are wondering if Cairo is a dangerous city , do not worry, I asked myself before leaving.

Moreover, on our media, it seems that the news from Egypt come only and always when something bad happens: bombs, terrorist attacks and so on.

Just in 2017, not long ago, on Palm Sunday there were two simultaneous attacks in Tanta and Alexandria, and 44 people lost their lives.

So to the question: is Cairo a dangerous city ? In conscience, as a person writing on the web, I could not answer: on one hand saying “no, it is strasicura” would be a little simplistic, on the other to say that “yes it is” would be at least unreal.

On the other hand I would say that nobody could ever answer this question in an absolutistic way.

If I have to base myself on my experience as a traveler who visited Egypt in July 2018 (so not so long ago) I would be tempted to say that in Cairo it is more dangerous to cross the road than to die swept away by a bomb: the roads and tourist sites are guarded day and night by the police and in general, walking the streets you never have the feeling that something dangerous is about to happen.

As usual, the only recommendation I have is to use common sense, keep away from potential trouble and demonstrations, check the recent notices from the government embassy and the foreign ministry and make absolutely no travel insurance.

Spoiler : from the news that comes to me, it seems that 2019 will again be the year of this country’s tourist boom .

The Best Things to See at Aswan in 2 Days

What are the things to see in Aswan ? From the Nubian Museum to the Great Dam, from the magnificent Abu Simbel Temples and File to the islands on the placid waters of the Nile, from the relaxed mega atmosphere to the romantic spice market, here are the things not to be missed in Aswan that will make you fall in love with this destination how they made me fall in love.

Aswan is a calm and warm city, full of incredible things to see and do.

When I come back from a trip, with the thousand emotions in turmoil, it is always very difficult to think about what were in a country, my favorite destinations.

Egypt is an amazing country, full of history, traditions and culture but the winner’s palm definitely goes to Aswan. From the absolutely hypnotic temples of Abu Simbel and File to peaceful boat trips to the islands of Elefantina and Kitchener, Assuan is filled with historical riches, peaceful Nubian villages and beautiful views of the Nile.


If you travel in Egypt do it yourself or with a tour, however in Aswan you arrive sooner or later, it is one of the crucial points of every Nile cruise : here’s what to see in Aswan , which you really can not miss.

Virtually every night, while Massi slept in the hotel with air conditioning, I, as a good “spice hunter”, took the boat, crossed the Nile and went for a ride to Sharia al-Souq , or in the market of Aswan , for fill my pockets with cinnamon, saffron, karkade , cloves, bergamot, pepper and nutmeg.

Located in the center of the town, a stone’s throw from the train station and the Nile bank, the Aswan market is a shopper’s paradise: the stalls are full of spices, traditional galebeyas (long robes) and fabrics, silverware and souvenirs of all kinds are wasted in a rainbow of colors and perfumes.

It is a fun place to explore and in general the sellers are more lovable and less aggressive than in other markets such as Khan el Khalili in Cairo .

Pay attention to the perfumes (Aswan is famous for the perfumes) and to the Nubian embroideries of the peoples of Upper Egypt. And if like me you are addicted to the karkade, you will be spoiled for choice among the huge buckets of dark red hibiscus petals that you can buy by weight to recreate the drink at home (or to make a gift).

Abu Simbel: What to know and how to visit it

Built to stand the test of time, to pay tribute to the pharaoh as a god and to impress anyone in front of them, the Abu Simbel temples still perform their task today, 3,000 years after their construction.

The Great Temple of Ramses II at Abu Simbel, with the 4 giants at the entrance representing the pharaoh

Strongly wanted by Ramses II , the Abu Simbel temples are one of the unmissable things of every trip to Egypt .

After my two visits here (at a distance of 9 years one from the other!) I wrote the things we need to know . At the end of this post you also find how to visit it, so you can avoid the cheats that unfortunately do not say it, but in Egypt they are always lurking around the corner.

In any case, the first moment in which you will see the statues of the pharaoh will be a moment that will remain engraved in your life forever.

The temple of Abu Simbel  was strongly desired and built by Ramses II to celebrate his victory against the Hittites at the Battle of Kadesh in 1274 BC. 
The temple was dedicated to a series of ancient Egyptian deities such as Ra-Horakhty , Ptah and Amon.

Abu Simbel was designed by the pharaoh also to be a testimony of his power that should never be affected by time.

That’s why the impressive statues and the temple itself were built of solid stone.

Ramses, also (ok was also a bit ‘megalomaniac, let’s face it), did not want his temple could be destroyed by future kings and wanted to make his position of true god eternal . This is also one of the reasons why the temples to him and his queen Nefertari were so far away, about 280 km south of Aswan , near the border with present Sudan.

And the Abu Simbel temples remained intact , even though the sand eventually covered them, erasing their memory until in 1813 the Swiss archaeologist Burckhardt (the same who discovered Petra in Jordan , just to understand), found it under the sand. The work to bring Abu Simbel back to light began until the Italian archaeologist Giovanni Battista Belzoni entered the complex for the first time in 1817.

Even today the Abu Simbel temples fully meet Ramses’ goal of living 
forever .

Hotel Advice: Ikos Dassia Resort in Corfu

Because of its proximity and history with continental Europe, the island of Corfu was actually one of the first Greek islands to experience mass tourism.

For this reason, Corfu has numerous accommodation options, many restaurants and bars and a more cosmopolitan atmosphere than the neighboring islands.

When I thought about organizing my trip, I decided to opt for a resort that lived up to the expectations of this wonderful island: after reading many reviews on hotels and resorts in Corfu, the choice was to try, for once , an all-inclusive open last May: the choice fell on ‘ Ikos Dassia Resort .

I admit, the choice was a little risky: it is known that the new structures are beautiful but that you can incur the usual difficulties of a resort without running-in.

The expectations were however very high and, believe me, I could not have made a better choice: it is no coincidence that Ikos Resorts have dominated the scene of the last year in the panorama of luxury all-inclusive resorts winning the “2018 Trip Advisor Travelers’ Choice awards “ .

The Ikos Dassia is about a 30-minute drive from Corfu Airport (CFU) on the east coast of the island, in a beautiful bay, where you can admire breathtaking sunrises and incredible views of the mainland. It is also strategically located for visiting the island.

As soon as we set foot outside the airport of Corfu we were greeted by the representative of Ikos Dassia, who very kindly took us to the car to take us to the Resort where we are given some refreshing towels and we are invited to sit on the terrace.

Waiting for the room (our choice fell on a Panorama Junior Suite ) we are given all the information regarding the stay: activities, restaurants, theme nights. So we are invited to have breakfast.

Since the wait for the room is prolonged, we decide to make a first round to discover the Resort just to confirm our first impression: the rooms are beautifully furnished with class and elegance , nothing is left to chance. In particular, the Hall is bright and composed of several lounges where guests can read, relax and have a drink.