I recently had the opportunity to explore Italy while attending meetings and the opening of our new office in Parma, Italy. Italy is a beautiful country full of gorgeous scenery, delicious food, and historic landmarks. The best way to see the country was to take a road trip. I packed a lot into the trip, such as climbing a mountain and visiting ruins as well as eating at a pizzeria that accepted Ducatus coin. Below are some of the places visited that made my trip memorable.
Sicily — It is the largest Mediterranean island off the “boot” of Italy. Sicily dates back to 8,000 B.C.E, so there is no shortage of historic sites. I was able to explore the many attractions, such as the Valley of the Temples in Agrigento and the Cappella Palatina. The Valley of the Temples is in a valley full of almond trees. There are several temples, including the Temple of Olympian Zeus and the Temple of Castor and Pollux (Dioscuri). The Cappella Palatina is famous for its architecture and gold mosaics. It is a chapel built for the Norman Palace in 1132 and is one of the UNESCO World Heritage sites. The geography of Sicily is one of wonder since it is full of hills and rugged terrain. In fact, the island is home to Mount Etna, the highest point on the island and the largest of the three volcanoes in Italy. I climbed to the summit and got quite a workout!
Naples — This is another part of Italy that should be on your bucket list. Naples is located north of Sicily on the west coast of the Italian peninsula between two areas of volcanic activity — Mount Vesuvius and Campi Flegrei. There are many palaces and churches to explore along the beautiful hills and the bay. One of the many interesting attractions is the underground city. Located 40 meters below street-level, this maze of narrow tunnels takes you under the city. It was built by the Greeks in the fourth century and later the Romans built aqueducts to bring water to the town. However, as the centuries passed, buildings were built on top of the underground city. It was even used as a WWII bomb shelter.
My road trip in Italy was one I will never forget. The opening of our office Parma was the crowning moment; an achievement made possible by everyone at Ducatus. There is much more of Italy to see and I hope to go back very soon.