The Nagasawa family trip to Italy and France:  June 12 - 30, 2008




June 12  Fly to Rome June 21 Fly to Marseilles
June 13 Arrive in Rome June 22 Drive to Les Barcares
June 14 Rome June 23 Sigean Animal Reserve
June 15 Assisi, drive to Venice June 24 Priory of Serrabona
June 16 Venice June 25 Collioure
June 17 Drive to Florence June 26 Relax in Claira
June 18 Florence, drive to Siena & Orvieto June 27 Drive to Barcelona
June 19 Orvieto, drive to Rome June 28 Relax in Claira
June 20 Rome June 29 Drive to Marseilles
    June 30 Fly back to Boston

(the links are the days in purple; click on them to see pictures)


June 18, 2008:


In the morning, we went to Florence's Uffizi Gallery, the museum housing the greatest Italian paintings and sculptures, especially from the Renaissance.  Here's the entrance.



Here are some of the great sculptures.  We had approximately 90 minutes in the greatest Italian museum because ... John and Zoe's patience ran out.


I snagged this aerial picture of Siena, a smaller city in sun-drenched Tuscany.  We drove a couple of hours from Florence to Siena, the home of Catherine of Siena (who I admire and appreciate in many ways, except that she was pro-Crusades).  One tour guide book said that Siena still feels medieval because it hasn't done as well economically.  Apparently, this goes back to a medieval war between Siena and Florence when they were city-states.


You can kind of get the flavor that the city is older and less colorful.  But it has a lot of charm.


We ate lunch at this restaurant.  The outdoor seating was in a narrow street without any physical distinction between driving lane and sidewalk.  It was weird to have people walking by and a few cars driving by us while we ate.


I ate roasted Tuscan wild boar with polenta along with a Chianti wine native to the Tuscany region.  This was one of my favorite Italian dishes ever!  Ah....  :) 


Then we drove in the evening to another of the "hill towns" - Orvieto.  Check out someone else's magnificent pictures, below! 


Apparently a pope fled here during a controversial time for the papacy.  You can see why!  Being on a hill with cliffs was a good advantage militarily. 


One of the main streets in Orvieto.


One of the central places in town. 


We walked around to the western side.  Here's Orvieto at sunset.


Here's the Nagasawa family in an Orvieto sunset.


As the sunlight dimmed, the city took on a beautiful quietness.



We spent one night in a flat owned by some restaurant owners.  Notice how new and nice the interior is!


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