Not your little fishing boats
If you are looking for a European tourist destination, consider the Marche region of central Italy. Depending on your interests, it is an ideal vacation spot. You can get classic Italian food, and wash it down with fine local wine. And the Marche region hasn’t yet been discovered by tourists. There’s a tradeoff; you won’t have to fight the crowds to see what you want to see. On the other hand, you’ll have a hard time finding fancy hotels. And the roads are not always the best, not much of a surprise when you consider the region’s hilly terrain. We’ll start our tour of this region in the north and work our way south.
The little town of Urbino is a UNESCO World Heritage Site that was once a great center of learning. The University has about twenty thousand students, considerably more than Urbino’s resident population of approximately fifteen thousand. You’ll also find the Galleria Nazionale delle Marche (National Gallery of The Marche) with Titian’s Resurrection and Last Supper. The city also contains several Renaissance churches worth visiting.
Ancona is a port city that was largely destroyed during World War II. Among its sights are the Twelfth Century Duomo di San Ciriaco (Saint Ciriaco Cathedral) and the Romanesque Santa Maria della Piazza.
Ascoli Piceno is a valley town of about fifty thousand people. You’ll want to see the Piazza del Populo (Square of the People) and the Thirteenth Century Palazzo dei Capitani del Populo (Palace of the People’s Captains) and several other historic churches. Try to get to Ascoli Piceno for the first Sunday in August to enjoy Renaissance costume parade and jousting tournament.
The Marches has many regional specialties, for example brodetto (fish soup) with thirteen kinds of fish and seafood. See our companion article I Love Touring Italy – The Marche Region for a sample menu and more information on Marche wines as well as an in-depth examination of its tourist attractions. The region is home to two DOCG (the G stands for Guarantita) red wines, the Montepulciano-Sangiovese based Rosso Conero Riserva and the Vernaccia di Serrapetrona based on a local grape.
Levi Reiss has authored or co-authored ten books on computers and the Internet, but to be honest, he would rather just drink fine Italian or other wine, accompanied by the right foods. He teaches classes in computers at an Ontario French-language community college. Visit his website www.travelitalytravel.com devoted to Italian travel with an accent on fine Italian wine and food. Visit his central wine website www.theworldwidewine.com with weekly reviews of $10 wine and columns devoted to various aspects of wine including wine and food, humor, trivia, organic and kosher wine and lots more.Click to access the original, longer article on this Italian tourist location.
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