A handy little book, Victoria’s Travel Tipz – Italian Style was written by Victoria De Maio. I met Victoria for the first time in Venice a few weeks ago, when she was on a visit to Italy from her home in California, and we immediately hit it off.
Over lunch in a back-alley Venetian bacara, frequented by Casanova back in the day, where we ate delicious cicchetti and had an ombra or two, she presented me with a copy of her book to review. Taking it home and settling down to read, I found it highly practical and written in a light-hearted style; much like the charming Victoria herself! On reading it, I felt that Travel Tipz actually covers most of the information required by first time tourists visiting, not just Italy, but other Mediterranean countries too.
Small and light, this book is easy to slip into your backpack or handbag. It is crammed with most of the details you will require to simplify your first trip to Italy and give you more time to enjoy the experience without too much stress.
The back cover tells us that this little book will help you to “Enjoy la dolce vita, the sweet life, not frustration, disappointment or culture shock. Short, sweet and to the point, this is your essential and perfect companion for your next trip to bella Italia.”
Victoria has a lively travel blog called Postcards from Victoria which covers her own experiences of travel, mainly in Italy.
Travel Tipz covers such subjects as eating; where to stay; shopping; communicating; sight-seeing and personal safety.
Victoria also covers getting around and recommends the use of public transport over renting a car. Personally, prior to moving to Italy when I visited as a solo tourist, I also espoused the use of the excellent rail and bus networks which are highly efficient, most of the time. However, now that I actually live here, I realise that there is a great deal one misses when not enjoying the freedom of the open road. It really depends on how you feel about driving in Italy – the cities can be tricky – but I personally think that, unless you are on a simple city break, it is impossible to experience the country at its best without a car.
Victoria rounds off her chapters of practical advice with a reminder of why one travels to Italy in the first place, and that is to experience La Dolce Vita, enjoying the wonderful food, wine, climate, culture and – of course – the wonderful Italian people who make us all feel so welcome in their beautiful country.
This handy 78 page book is available on Amazon.com Travel Tipz at a price of US$7.99
I would highly recommend this little book for all first time travellers to Italy.
Orna O’Reilly, Veneto, Italy