Romance and pasta: a match made in heaven?
By Martin McAllister
With Valentine's Day just around the corner, hopeless romantics all over the world are racking their brains for something spectacular with which to surprise that special person this year. But what many don't realize is that this amorous task is easier than it seems. If you're looking for something that emits a bit more ingenuity than flowers and chocolates, why not opt to give someone the experience of a lifetime with a trip?
One of the best gifts anyone can give another person is the gift of good memories. And what better time is there for such a gift than Valentine's Day? After all, it's an opportunity for you and that special person to build those memories together. However, in planning this spectacular getaway, you'll carefully want to consider your destination options: where can you go that emanates true romance in the best way possible? Think wine, pasta and gelato - think Italy.
Often referred to as "il Belpaese" - "the beautiful country" - Italy is a top destination for romantic getaways. This is accredited just as much to the country's tranquil pace of life as it is to its stunning surroundings. So if you're looking for a holiday destination which will allow you and that one special person to enjoy each others' company to the fullest, pack your bags and begin practicing your Italian.
One of the most popular destinations for romantic getaways in Italy is Florence - and it's no surprise why. Although Florence is a city of considerable size, it boasts much of the charm of a small and intimate town. Couples can take a horse-drawn carriage ride through the city centre, stroll in the Boboli Gardens - a grandiose sixteenth century garden built by the Medici family - or head to Piazza Michelangelo - a landmark romantic viewpoint over the city. And apart from exquisite sightseeing opportunities, the city affords spectacular shopping in districts such as San Lorenzo or Santa Croce. Tuscan wine-tasting excursions also depart daily from the city - so you and your loved one can truly experience one of the gems of Italian culture. And as each day comes to an end, you can choose to watch the sunset from Ponte Trinita, walk along the moon-lit River Arno, or dine in one of the city's countless gourmet restaurants.
Alternatively, why not visit Rome? Appropriately called "The City of Love", Rome has a great deal to offer couples who are on a romantic getaway. Visit the Villa Borghese, which once belonged to the royal family and is now a beautiful park; or visit the Monte Mario, which offers breathtaking panoramic views of the city. Alternatively, sit on the Spanish Steps with a picnic while taking in the beauty of the city, or visit one of Rome's most romantic spots, Piazza Navona, which bustles with life once the sun goes down. From sightseeing to simply unwinding together in the city's charming cafes, a couple in Rome will never have a dull moment.
If you're thinking about surprising that one special person with a Valentine's Day getaway in Italy, you'll find plenty of hotels - like Hilton Garden Inn - that offer spectacular accommodation, no matter which city you choose to visit. So make this Valentine's Day the best you've ever had and head for "the beautiful country" - you may just find that romance and Italian pasta is a match made in heaven.
About the Author
If you're thinking about surprising that one special person with a Valentine's Day getaway in Italy, you'll find plenty of hotels - like Hilton Garden Inn - that offer spectacular accommodation, no matter which city you choose to visit.
Martin McAllister is an online freelance journalist. He lives in Scotland.
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