Posts in Fashion
CIao Bella- Fashion, Food, and Travel through Northern italy
This is in Torbole on Lake Garda. It's known for it's wind surfing. Was super fun to watch everyone out on the lake. 

This is in Torbole on Lake Garda. It's known for it's wind surfing. Was super fun to watch everyone out on the lake. 

"You may have the universe if I may have Italy"

- Giuseppe Verdi

I have to agree Guiseppe, I have to agree. There are so many incredible places in this world and every time I go to a new place I think this may be my new favorite place and this Italy trip was no different.

When people think of Italy they perhaps think of Rome, Florence, The Leaning Tower of Pisa, pasta, wine but most don’t think about mountains, lakes, german, YES German. We spent this trip in northern Italy, the lakes area of Italy. Lake Como, Lake Garda, and Lake Maggiore are the 3 largest lakes in Italy and are all in the northern region that butts up to the Alps. For this trip we stayed on the northern tip of Lake Garda in Torbole for 4 days and then drove up further north to a small village called Caldaro near Bolzano for another 4 days.

Day 1- Travel Day to Torbole

The temperatures for this trip were going to be far above average so I was doing my best to dress for the heat! Comfy, cute sandals are a must! These rose gold numbers were great finds from Office and perfect for this trip!

Crop Top- Nordstrom Rack, Wedge Sandals- The Office, Pants- Zara, Watch- Kate Spade, Sunglasses- Kate Spade, Earrings- Lilac Rose, Lipgloss- Neutrogena

Crop Top- Nordstrom Rack, Wedge Sandals- The Office, Pants- Zara, Watch- Kate Spade, Sunglasses- Kate Spade, Earrings- Lilac Rose, Lipgloss- Neutrogena

We stayed in a Hotel Benaco right near the water. It's the little green building to the right side of pic. It was straight out of the 70's with a bed with the firmness of a rock but location couldn't be beat!

We stayed in a Hotel Benaco right near the water. It's the little green building to the right side of pic. It was straight out of the 70's with a bed with the firmness of a rock but location couldn't be beat!

Day 2- Torbole- sun and food!

I was very eager to paddle board on this trip but sadly the winds were too high for me to get out on the water. Instead we chilled on the rocky beach and watched the windsurfers do their thing. 

Gorgeous water set with a rocky backdrop. Perfection!

Gorgeous water set with a rocky backdrop. Perfection!

One Piece Swimsuit- H&M, Sandals- Target, Sunglasses- Kate Spade, Scarf Coverup- Zara, Nuetragena SPF 50- A MUST

One Piece Swimsuit- H&M, Sandals- Target, Sunglasses- Kate Spade, Scarf Coverup- Zara, Nuetragena SPF 50- A MUST

I am loving one pieces right now!

I am loving one pieces right now!

We had an amazing restaurant just across the street from us called Ristorante Pizzeria Al Porto Torbole sul Garda. We normally don't eat more than once at a place but we ate here twice because we enjoyed it so much. Amazing pizza and salads!

Top- H&M, Pants- Zara, Sandals- Office, Choker- River Island, Watch- Kate Spade

Top- H&M, Pants- Zara, Sandals- Office, Choker- River Island, Watch- Kate Spade

Day 3- Canyoning and Fancy Dinner!

Lake Garda is the more active of all the lakes in Italy. Cycling, windsurfing, kayaking, and canyoning are HUGE. It was ungodly hot so the idea of biking didn't really appeal to either of us. Not to mention I am not much of a cyclist in general. Windsurfing takes at least a week's worth of lessons to pick up on, so that was out. Canyoning was perfect for us because it was a day long excursion that required no additional training and it was higher up the mountain where it was cooler. 

If you are not familiar with canyoning, it's basically starting at the top of the canyon and working your way down by jumping, repelling, sliding, and swimming down. I have a slight issue with heights but I am all about conquering your fears! Jumping was no problem, the repelling was more challenging for me as you go backwards down and are trusting someone to hoist you down... All and all it was a fun experience and I highly recommend!

Nevermind that my mouth is open in every picture :)

Nevermind that my mouth is open in every picture :)

SUPERWOMAN!! So graceful :)

SUPERWOMAN!! So graceful :)

Dinner Time!

We had actually been to Torbole before. We spent 4 days there for our honeymoon. Last time we were there we went to this amazing Osteria called Osteria Le Servite outside of town that grows the ingredients they use in a giant garden out back. They have an incredible wine selection, amazing food, and great customer service. We just had to go back. 

Dress- Banana Republic, Sandals- Office, Watch- Kate Spade, Earrings- Lilac Rose

Dress- Banana Republic, Sandals- Office, Watch- Kate Spade, Earrings- Lilac Rose

Day 4- Fairy Ride to Malcesine and cable car ride up the mountain

Hat- H&M, Crop Top- Nordstrom Rack, Denim Skirt- H&M, Sandals- Office, Watch- Kate Spade, Earrings- Lilac Rose, Lip Gloss- Nuetragena

Hat- H&M, Crop Top- Nordstrom Rack, Denim Skirt- H&M, Sandals- Office, Watch- Kate Spade, Earrings- Lilac Rose, Lip Gloss- Nuetragena

We decided to explore other towns on the lake on Day 4. There is a fairy that runs about every 30 minutes that will take you to different towns on the lake. We decided to go to Malcesine because it has a cable car that takes you up the mountain where you can see over the whole lake. There is also a restaurant, bar and kite sailors running off the cliffs so really worth the trip! It feels like you stepped into the "Sound of Music" when you reached the top. Oddly enough, the hills are alive with the sound of music because cattle that are grazing on the open pasture are wearing bells. It was truly breathtaking! Just make sure you either get up really early or do what we did and go around 3. The cable car stops running at 6 so we didn't have to worry about as much of a line on the way up or down. If you go middle of day, expect a wait fo 45 minutes for car on both ends. 

Fairy from Torbole to Malcesine 

Fairy from Torbole to Malcesine 

While we were in Malcesine we decided we needed a snack and some wine before we headed up the mountain. We wandered through the old streets until we wandered into a Venetian style eatery called Ciao Bei with cichetti tapas. While on our honeymoon in Venice we fell in love with this style food so were very excited! It did not disappoint. If you aren't familiar with cicchetti it's more or less Venetian Tapas. 

Sounds of Music RIGHT?!!?

Sounds of Music RIGHT?!!?

Places to sit and enjoy some wine or a Spritz

Places to sit and enjoy some wine or a Spritz

We are going all the way  up to the very top!

We are going all the way  up to the very top!

Day 5- Drive to Caldaro and my 31st BDAY :)

Our time had come to an end in Torbole. We had a wonderful time and feel we could still go back for another trip to explore even more! But it was onto another beautiful place. Further North we go! So as you may remember at the beginning of this post I mentioned Italy and it's relation to German. I am sure that confused many of you. Well let me expain- the area of Caldaro is very Northern Italy. The area that butts up to the Alps and Austria. This is where German comes into play. German is the first language spoken in this area, then Italian, and them MAYBE English. Unfortunately the small amount of German I had learned in elementary school was of no help. It was a bit more difficult to communicate here but still a good amount of people speak English or enough to roughly communicate. All the signs, roads, and towns have both a German name and then an Italian name. It's quite interesting really. 

So we drive about an hour and a half and arrive in Caldaro. It is a STUNNING little village. Best part is they have what they call WINE ROAD. There are 20 wineries in this little town of 7,000. It's beautiful!  

Sweater- Macy's, Santuary, Shorts- Banana Republic, Bralette- H&M, Sandales- Target, Watch- Kate Spade, 

Sweater- Macy's, Santuary, Shorts- Banana Republic, Bralette- H&M, Sandales- Target, Watch- Kate Spade, 

Our accomodation was a hotel called Bruhl. It had just opened the year prior and was stunning. It is run by a very sweet couple that are a two person show minus the house keepers. They are running drinks and food out to the pool for guests while answering the phones, while checking in new guests, while answering questions. They were fabulous and so was the hotel!

View from our balcony

View from our balcony

The room is very modern and open

The room is very modern and open

Day 6- Paddle Boating on Lake Caldaro and Wine Tasting

So about 6 minutes outside of Caldaro there is Lake Caldaro. It is the warmest alpine lake in the world. It's not very big but it's gorgeous! The waters a crystal clear and so blue! There are opportunities to rent paddle boards, wind surfing, paddle boats or just hang out on the grassy beach. I always thought a beach had to have sand but I acutally prefer the grass. It doesn't get hot and it's not a mess!

Pictures just don't dot it justice!

Pictures just don't dot it justice!

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One of my favorite days! The water was perfect!

One of my favorite days! The water was perfect!

Time for some wine tasting! We hit up 3 different places in one day. The great thing is that they are all walking distance!

Day 7- Relaxing by the pool and dinner

The final full day in Caldaro was a sleepy one. Just relaxing by the pool and napping. We wanted to take it easy before traveling back home. Our amaxing hosts made sure we were taken care of with delicous snacks by the pool. If only this were only considered a snack :)

Our trip was an amazing one! We think that Caldaro will be an annual trip for us. It was just so beautiful and relaxing, not to mention the wine! If you are traveling to Italy I highly recommend looking into the smaller towns outside of Florence or Rome. It all depends on how you like to travel and what you like to see but my husband and I are all about food, wine, scenic outdoors and relaxing. Northern Italy is our idea of heaven. The landscape, weather, food, people. It has everything we love! Below are the places I would recommend if you decide to take a trip to Torbole and Caldaro.

 

Recommendations

Restaurant -

Ciao Bei (Malcesine)- Cicchetti and tapas

Osteria le Servite (Torbole)- great menu, steak was delicious!

Ristorante Pizzeria Al Porto Torbole sul Garda (Torbole)- good menu overall

Rottenburger Keller (Caldaro)- Good Pizza

Torggkeller (Caldaro)- Meats, cheeses, antipasti

Hotel-

Bruhl in Caldaro

Wineries-

Ritterhoff (ask for Doris )

Manincor

Erste & Neue (more of a large company, not as personal but good wine)

 

 

I hope that you found this blog post interesting and helpful. Feel free to leave comments and forward it on to friends and family!

CHEERS!

The Food Fanantic & Exercise Enthusiast

Scotch and Scotts- Fashion, food and travel in Scotland
Edinborugh-15.jpg

This was just outside Edinburgh in St. Andrews. So much more than just a golf course in this adorable little town. 

I just got back from spending a long weekend in Edinburgh, Scotland. What an amazing city. The moment you step into the Edinburgh you feel part of something grand. It's like stepping back in time. Surrounded by castles, beautiful architecture, and hundreds of years of history.  

As I was getting ready to pack I of course had to think about the elements. Scotland is not known for it’s bright sunny days. When I looked at the forecast the week before it was at least 60% chance of rain everyday with 20 mph winds. Needless to say I was a bit nervous about being wet and cold the whole time. I realized that we were going to see the sights and make some memories but is it so bad that I want to look back at pictures and think “That was a great trip” AND “ I looked good”? So I strategically packed outfits that I thought would be not only practical but cute. So here they are!

Day 1- Travel Day

So when deciding what to wear on a travel day I always do my best to layer. This allows me to fit more into my bag (I was only bringing a carry on for this trip). If I am packing heels for the trip I tend to wear them to the airport, again allowing more room in my bag.  I decided to stick with a neutral pallet. This allows me to mix and match various pieces. I of course had to pack my plaid scarf! I wanted to fit in with the local Scot's. 

 

White Linen Shirt (Banana Republic), Denim Skinnies (Banana Republic), Minus the Leather Jacket (Express), Plaid Blanket Scarf, Chunky Heeled Booties (Kenneth Cole Reaction), Watch (Kate Spade)

White Linen Shirt (Banana Republic), Denim Skinnies (Banana Republic), Minus the Leather Jacket (Express), Plaid Blanket Scarf, Chunky Heeled Booties (Kenneth Cole Reaction), Watch (Kate Spade)

After arriving in Edinburgh. Out for a nice dinner with a great view of the castle!

After arriving in Edinburgh. Out for a nice dinner with a great view of the castle!

Day 2- Arthur's Seat and Scotch Tasting

Arthur's Seat is an incredible hike up a large rock formation that has a great view overlooking the city. I of course wore my workout clothes for this part of trip. If you are going to Edinburgh definitely take this hike!

You can see for miles! Gorgeous!

You can see for miles! Gorgeous!

After we finished up with the Arthur's Seat hike we did the Scotch Experience. Even if you are not a big Scotch drinker this is a tour worth doing. You learn a lot and it's quite a production. You start the tour by getting in a cart that is shaped like a whiskey barrel. It's a ride that takes your through the different steps of the scotch process. At the end you get out and are given a Scratch and Sniff Sticker card that will give you the different scents you might experience when smelling/tasting a scotch. You learn how each region's climate plays into the final taste and smell of the Scotch. 

You wrap up the end of the tour by walking through the largest collection of scotch on the planet. It is quite something. Extremely old bottles to collector edition bottles and everything in between (see pic below). 

Ok so what did I wear for this? Again not knowing what the weather had in store for us it was important that I wore my hair in a way that if the elements got to it I wouldn't look like that girl from The Ring. Stringy, flat, nasty hair. So I chose to wear a scarf, one of my favorite hair accesories! Of course another must was comfortable shoes. It's important to have a great pair of cute  and comfortable shoes when on vacation as chances are you will be walking a great deal. We easily walked over 12,000 steps each day. Cole Haan makes the most comfortable and trendy wing tips. The soles are more like a tennis shoe while the top is a more formal wing tip. A MUST!

Fringe Top (Anthropologie), Jeans (Levi- Wedgie Fit), Shoes (Cole Haan), Head Scarf (Zara)

Fringe Top (Anthropologie), Jeans (Levi- Wedgie Fit), Shoes (Cole Haan), Head Scarf (Zara)

Enjoying Scotch sample in front of the world's largest collection of Scotch. 

Enjoying Scotch sample in front of the world's largest collection of Scotch. 

Day 3- Road Trip to Stirling Castle and St. Andrews

Day 3 we ventured out of Edinburgh. We rented a car to drive up the coast to see Stirling Castle and St. Andrews Golf Course. Believe it or not up to this point we still had not seen rain. We had gorgeous weather from start to finish of each day. Day 3 was no different. We drove an hour and a half to Stirling Castle. Very much recommend if you are able to get outside of city. I again chose to wear something comfortable and layer up. 

Chambray Shirt (GAP), Jewel Top (Banana Republic), Leather Pants (Anthropologie- Pilcro), Shoes (Cole Haan), Side Satchel (Target), Sunglasses (Target)

Chambray Shirt (GAP), Jewel Top (Banana Republic), Leather Pants (Anthropologie- Pilcro), Shoes (Cole Haan), Side Satchel (Target), Sunglasses (Target)

Having a little fun with the props :)

Having a little fun with the props :)

The famous bridge on St. Andrews Golf Course.

The famous bridge on St. Andrews Golf Course.

Day 4- Edinburgh Castle

This was our final day in Edinburgh. We did a walking food tour and a tour of Edinburgh Castle. This day our weather luck ran out and we ran into some serious ran. But It's ok as I had packed for that. A baseball cap was another way for me to ensure I wasn't going to have to deal with nastly hair should the weather turn wet. Of course a rain jacket is a must if you are traveling to this part of the world as the weather is extremely unpredictable. One moment it's sunny and warm and then 30 min later it's raining, then sunny, then windy, then hot. Needless to say you have to prepare for just about anything. This day was quite a bit cooler than the rest, so the warm sweater I packed came in handy. 

Sweater (Anthropologie), Jeans (Banana Republic), Shoes (Cole Haan), Rain Jacket (Super Dry), Hat (H&M), Watch (Kate Spade)

Sweater (Anthropologie), Jeans (Banana Republic), Shoes (Cole Haan), Rain Jacket (Super Dry), Hat (H&M), Watch (Kate Spade)

Could not escape the rain today. 

Could not escape the rain today. 

As I said, Edinburgh is an incredible city and I highly recommend visiting if you have the opportunity. When packing remember- wear comfortable shoes, bring a rain jacket (umbrella's may not cut it with the wind), hats and other hair accessories are a must to deal with the rain and wind, and layers are always recommended as it can go from cold to hot in an instant. 

The next trip will be Northern Italy. Stay tuned! 

CHEERS-

The Food Fanantic & Exercise Enthusiast