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Vicarious travels [Oct. 8th, 2016|10:06 pm]
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This time last year, we were just home from our holiday in (mostly) France; in the intervening year we have spent a couple of weeks in the west of Scotland, and - and that's it. Not our usual allocation of holiday, and people still ask us about our travels as if they expected more of us, but there you go. We've been otherwise occupied.

I continue to study the Guardian's the Travel supplements. I've been feeling a bit self-conscious about this, but right now I'm feeling vindicated, since I've just booked a cottage on Lindisfarne for next midsummer - on the basis of the Guardian's recommendation of cosy cottages for Christmas.

Otherwise, it's mostly Italy. In order of publication:

A curious piece in the 'why I love a place I know' series by a doctor working in the Barolo wine country, who appears to be living about a century ago - not because he reaches his patients on horseback through the vineyards, but this is surely a voice from the past: "Farmers have always worshipped barolo, the king of wines, like a god with healing powers. In the past, rich noble families from Turin came for 'wine-therapy' to cure anaemia and treat low blood pressure. I prescribe four glasses of barolo a day to pregnant women: it works miracles, giving them the energy to face labour and delivery. We have a saying: 'Wine makes good, healthy blood.'" Italy is another country; they do things differently there. (He recommends B & B in an organic flour mill).

I don't suppose I would really construct a trip to Italy around a (food) festival, but here's the link just in case - it's the chestnut festivals that particularly appeal, and they list two: Sagra della Castagna, Soriano nel Cimino, Lazio, which looks very grand and cultural, and the Fiera nazionale del Marrone which looks altogether more food focussed. Their website is a bit sluggish, so here, have some chestnut porn:

This reminded me of staying somewhere in France, on a walking holiday, a week or two too early for the chestnut festival - but where? I thought it would be easy to search out, but it seems that everywhere in France has its chestnut festival: was it Quarrŕ-les-Tombes? or somewhere, anywhere in the Ardèche?

I really would like to visit Friuli (capital: Trieste), so these suggestions might actually be of use.

(My earlier posts with links for Italy, including wine tourism in Collio and the wetlands of the Veneto, which must be in the same sort of area.)