Traveling to Capri, Italy?

This hidden gem is a surreal experience! A beautiful old building at the top of the Anacapri cliffs with stunning views and excellent service. The restaurant’s food and wine selection make it so that you never need to leave the hotel. The infinity pool is unbelievable as it looks over the entire Gulf of Naples! Not in the mood to swim? Lounge pool-side with a good book, and make sure you order one of their many salads with a nice cold glass of wine. This hotel is perfect it’s private, off the beaten path, quiet, and truly an authentic Italian experience!

Hotel Caesar Augustus is a luxury hotel nestled on the cliffs of Capri and has definitely one of the most breathtaking views in the world. From almost every room and place in this spectacularly designed hotel, guests can enjoy views of the Bay of Naples. This hotel is perfect for weddings, honeymoon, family reunions and vacations. The suites and rooms of Caesar Augustus are extremely luxurious and elegant, skillfully designed to provide comfort and satisfaction to each guest. A stay in this luxurious cliffside hotel in Capri, Italy would definitely be one exceptional travel experience one traveler can have in this lifetime!

 

Address: Hotel Caesar Augustus, Via Giuseppe Orlandi, 4, 80071 Anacapri Naples, Italy 

Rome and Florence

I am currently working on a scrapbook of all of my trips I’ve made to Europe and I am really enjoying looking through all of my pictures again. I can’t wait to go back to Italy again someday! It was by far one of my favorite countries that I have traveled to. Here are some of my favorite shots that I took of Rome, Vatican City, and Florence. I’ll post up more pictures of Verona, Venice, and Pisa later on :)

Our cute tour guide :)

Ghost Towns

I have always been afarid of ghost towns, but at the same time, I was interested in learning more about them. I have never been to one, but I do hope that one day I can visit one. There are so many ghost towns in the world that it is hard to name them all. I found this article that narrows down the top 10 abandoned towns. 

1. St. Elmo, Colorado

Once a booming mining town and trading post along railroad routes running through central Colorado, St. Elmo was abandoned when the railroad shut down in 1922. Many of the buildings including stores, houses, and the church were left intact, filled with the belongings of their former residents.

2. Chaco Canyon, New Mexico

The Chaco civilization thrived from roughly a.d. 800 to 1100. During this period, the canyon served as a ceremonial, civic, and commercial center. Residents built clusters of dwellings and circular ceremonial structures, called kivas, from mud brick, sandstone, and wood, many of which remain intact today.

3. Bodie, California

In 1879, Bodie was a bustling gold-mining town and home to 8,500 residents known for gunfighting and brawling. Within a decade, the mines had been largely depleted and the population had begun a steady decline that ended in total abandonment. The 150 remaining buildings are much as their residents left them.

4. Humberstone and Santa Laura, Atacama Desert, Chile

Home to saltpeter mines, these two company towns in northern Chile were abandoned in 1958. The well reserved buildings include a theater with its original chairs, houses, a cast-iron swimming pool made from the hull of a ship, a hotel, and grocers’ shops complete with price lists.

5. Bhangarh, Rajasthan, India

When Bhangarh, a local capital in northwest India, was conquered by the raja of Jaipur in the 1720s, the city was quickly deserted. Dating from the 17th century and before, the ruins including crumbling temples and pavilions, a fort, and a medieval bazaarare said to be haunted, and eerie legends surround the city’s rise and rapid decline.

6. Kayaköy, Anatolia, Turkey

When the Greco-Turkish war ended in 1923, roughly a million Greeks living in Turkey were repatriated, and Kayaköy, a Greek village of roughly 2,000 residents in western Turkey, was abandoned. The remains of the village, including hundreds of ruined homes and two Greek Orthodox churches are preserved as a historic site.

7. Pyramiden, Svalbard, Norway

This Arctic coal-mining town, owned by the U.S.S.R. since 1927, was an ideal Soviet settlement complete with workers’ barracks, a sports center, and a bust of Lenin. The mine is now exhausted, but the buildings, including a library full of books, a theater, and a music hall with the world’s northernmost grand piano, have been left as they were when the town was abandoned in 1998.

8. Herculaneum, Naples, Italy

In the summer of 79a.d., Mount Vesuvius erupted and buried the small, wealthy Roman seaside resort of Herculaneum in searing ash and rock. Archaeological excavations have uncovered private villas, shops, bathhouses, and a fascinating range of everyday objects.

9. Belchite, Zaragoza Province, Spain

Belchite was the site of a particularly brutal battle during the Spanish Civil War (1936-39). Occupied by Franco’s forces in 1937, the town was attacked by the Republican Army. The siege destroyed Belchite, but its ruined buildings serve as a ghostly memento of the intense violence they witnessed.

10. Kolmanskop, Namibia

Located among the sand dunes of the Namib Desert, Kolmanskop was built to house workers at a nearby diamond mine. The town was abandoned by the mid-1950s and since then the desert has consumed it, almost filling many once grand houses with sand. The interiors of a few buildings, however, are in good condition.

Venice Masks

I always wondered who makes these masks? What is their history? Why do they look scary? When I went to Venice with my family a few years back, we went inside a store that had all kinds of Venice masks. As I saw them up close, I realized that they were not as scary as I thought they were. They had a lot of interesting designs and a lot of work put into them. The owner of the store let me try one on and you totally see yourself as a different person. I always wanted to go to a masquerade and wear one, maybe one day I can go back to Venice and go to their festival! I thought I would share with everyone an article that I found that gives a brief history of these interesting masks: 

The Venice Carnival is the most largest Venetian festival, a sparkling cocktail of tradition, entertainment, history and transgression in this unique city and a festival that attracts thousands of people from all around the world every year. The Carnival has very old origins, in fact it celebrates the passage from winter into spring, a time when seemingly anything is possible, including the illusion where the most humble of classes become the most powerful by wearing masks on their faces. The official start of the Venice Carnival dates back to 1296, when the Senate of the Republic made the Carnival official with an edict declaring the day before Lent a public holiday. After an interruption lasting almost two centuries, the tradition of Carnival was rediscovered by the Municipality in 1980 and since then it has taken place every year with huge success.

Parts of the carnival traditions reach back to pre-Christian times. The ancient Roman festival of the Saturnalia is a probable origin of the Italian Carnival. The Saturnalia may be based on the Greek Dionysia and Oriental festivals. While medieval pageants and festivals such as Corpus Christi were church sanctioned celebrations, carnival was a representation of medieval folk culture. Many local carnival customs are also based on local pre-Christian rituals, for example the elaborate rites involving masked figures in the Swabian-Alemannic carnival. In Christianity, the most famous traditions, including parades and masquerading, are first attested from medieval Italy. The carnival of Venice was for a long time the most famous carnival. From Italy, carnival traditions spread to Spain, Portugal, and France. From France, they spread to the Rhineland of Germany, and to New Orleans. From Spain and Portugal, they spread to Latin America. Many other areas have developed their own traditions.

The original Venetian masks were rather simple in design and decoration and they often had a symbolic and practical function. Venetian masks were used to hide and protect their wearer’s identity during promiscuous or decadent activities, but they became also the symbol of transgression and freedom from the severe social rules imposed by the Serenissima Republic. Venetian masks were often used to protect gamblers from giving away indiscrete looks, especially to avoid their creditors, or by “barnaboti” noblemen who went banrupt, begging on street corners.

Masks were allowed from the day after Christmas, which marked the beginning of the Venetian Carnival, to Shrove Tuesday which marked its end, but were forbidden during religious feasts. As well as during the Carnival period, Venetians wore masks during the fortnight of the Ascension, and ended up wearing it, with a few exceptions, half-way through June. During all major events, such as official banquets or other celebrations of the Serenissima Republic, was permitted  to wear a mask and a cloak.