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mtaussig's picture

Under the Tuscan Sun; the book and the movie

on Wed, 02/20/2013 - 12:42
under the tuscan sun
Under the Tuscan Sun is  well-known as a book and a movie.  In our recent poll, readers rated Under the Tuscan Sun, the movie, as one they'd like to hear more about.  Since Wednesdays will be our book and movie review day on the blog,today, we thought we'd review both, Under the Tuscan Sun, the book and the movie.  Here are our observations:

About the Book:

1.  The book is NOTHING like the movie.  You could very easily hate one and love the other.  Except for the fact that love of Italy is the central theme, the plot and characters of the movie and book are nearly unrecognizable.

AndiC's picture

La Serenissima...the most serene

on Mon, 02/18/2013 - 10:43
Gondolas as far as the eye can see!
This is the final of 6 posts in a series covering my 5 weeks in Greece, Istanbul and Italy. The other posts are linked at the bottom of this post.

On a rather dreary Monday morning in early October I packed up the car, stopped for a coffee with a friend and then took my leave from Bologna. The Fiat 500 handled well in the rain along the highway and I arrived in a more pleasant Venice around 3pm. I turned in the car, sadly giving up the freedom of four wheels, and allowed myself to be enveloped in the beauty of riding along the canals of Venice.

I was met at Piazzale Roma by our agents Paolo

AndiC's picture

Firenze, la bella

on Tue, 01/29/2013 - 16:54
Here's Harriet, Mary Jane and then me!
This is post number 5 of 6 in a series covering my 5 weeks in Greece, Istanbul and Italy. The other posts are linked at the bottom of this post.

Florence has always been one of my favorite stops when in Italy, even before we had an Untour there, even before I started working at Untours. Its beauty, art, architecture and life are compared to no other city in Italy or elsewhere. There is constant movement, always something “on,” always something new. And though this was a brief, three-day stop for me, I had a lot to see and do, as usual.

I arrived on a Thursday, but due to my appointments in

mtaussig's picture

Dawna Warren and Jim Moore, Untourists of the Week

on Tue, 01/29/2013 - 14:24
Untourists, Untours, Greece, apartment rental

How is taking an Untour different from other ways of traveling?

"It is traveling without traveling--you have a home for a week or two. Time to get to know the locals at the little store, smile at the waitress in the local eating place, and try out a few words with the landlord’s family. And when you don’t feel like seeing the next site’s sights, you can take a day off, stay at home, read a book, or really get to know your local area by walking right out your door."

AndiC's picture

My Tuscany

on Thu, 01/17/2013 - 11:12
Untours staffer Andi Cancelliere gets a great shot of the rolling hills of Torrenieri, Tuscany, Italy

I was so excited to return to Tuscany. It had been two years since my last visit and this time I was staying on an Untours farm (La Canonica) that I’d never had the opportunity to call home. I started the day early, getting a taxi out to the Rome airport to pick up my car. That in and of itself was fun. It all went smoothly, don’t get me wrong, but the cars were parked so tightly at the Avis garage at the airport that I had to climb in from the passenger’s side, shimmy over the center console and then get settled in the driver’s seat in order to back out and get going. Hahaha! At least I’m pretty limber.

AndiC's picture

Finalmente in Italia!

on Thu, 01/10/2013 - 10:18
Untours Italy staffer Andi Cancelliere in front of Rome's Trevi Fountain

Touching down at 7:45 am in Rome meant that I had a full day to work and explore despite the exhaustion of having gotten up at 2 am local time. And work and explore I did for the whole two and a half weeks I had in Italy. My mantra “I’ll sleep when I get back to Philadelphia” is what kept me going. I wanted to be able to get as much work done as possible, but also have some time to explore my destination, catch up with old friends, visit with family and just have some good, old-fashioned fun.

mtaussig's picture

Jerry and Deena Koffler: Untourists of the Week again....

on Mon, 10/08/2012 - 09:46
Holland, Untour< Koffler

We couldn't resist.  After last weeks profile of Jerry and Deena we realized we didn't have room for any of the photos that they always come home with and post on Untours Cafe

So this Monday, we wanted to share with you their photos from Holland.  There's something for everybody, from stunning fields of flowers, to stunning glasses of beer, to a lovely shot of one of Leiden's canal with the old Fish Market Bridge at night, and the biggest bubble blower we've even seen!  No need to drive you can see, the natives favor bikes, to put it mildly.

And while we're speaking of places

Andrea Szyper's picture

Italy, myth and reality

on Wed, 09/26/2012 - 11:36
Untourist and photographer Glenn McClure took this photo of a man while on an Italian Untour

Italy is so alive in American media. We are a culture obsessed with the Italians, whether in the reality of in-depth cooking and travel shows or the stereotypes of wildly gesticulating movie characters, sexy sirens, mafia dons or Italian mamas insisting we "mangia, mangia!" The name Tuscany is used to brand everything from furniture to processed foods to housing subdivisions. Where does the myth end and the reality begin?

While I dare not speak for the Italians, I would like to take a moment to further examine some of our flawed and romantic notions of Italy and Italians...

mtaussig's picture

Untourist of the Week: Wendell & Celia Rogers

on Mon, 09/24/2012 - 12:36
Amalfi, Umbria, Untours, Untourist of the Week

I have a theory that the Untour way of travel changes how you see things.  Pulled out of your routine and placed into a setting of beauty, with some friendly, knowledgeable people to set you out on the right foot, many of us find that this way of travel  is not just a good trip.  It engenders another way of seeing. 

Nothing makes us happier that knowing that, when we send people on Untours, they are often able to look at the place they visit through more appreciative eyes.

Andrea Szyper's picture

So You Thought Italians Only Drank Wine: Italian Microbrews

on Wed, 09/19/2012 - 12:04
Who goes to Italy to drink beer? Those in the know.

Italians have long enjoyed beer with their pizza, but refined and complex micro brews have replaced the old Peroni. Indeed birra artiginale (Italian craft beer) is putting Italy on the world brewing map.

Unlike their northern European counterparts, Italian brewers are not bound by an old world beer making tradition. So they can borrow the best from the Germans or Belgians but add their own unconventional twist or look to America for inspiration.