Hello folks, let me take you with me to a trip of Europe today. There are some very beautiful countries in Europe to explore, where there is real art, culture and history. Some countries are very prosperous but very small. That makes us realize, size is no guarantee of beauty, prosperity and peace. So come along, let Aarttee Kaul Dhar be your tour guide today!

for-Travel

 

Italy

We begin our journey with Rome, called ‘Roma,’the capital of Italy. Here history greets you at every step. There is the Colosseum, on our ‘must visit’ list. It was the largest Amphitheatre of the entire Roman Empire where the lions and gladiators, criminals and brave hearts fought, to prove their strength and courage. You will surely notice the latest hi-end motorcycles and cars on the roads of the Italian capital which are a real delight. Let go of that deep sigh! The second most important monument is Fontana-de-Trevi or the Trevi Fountain! There are myths and legends associated with it; one says if you throw some coins in the water over your left shoulder your return to ‘Roma’ is assured. You could also visit Castel Sant Angelo, a mesmerizing sight originally a tomb, Musei Capitolini, a museum of artifacts;pyramid of Cestius, wondering what is a pyramid doing in Rome? Do visit the Vatican City, the smallest country and the residence of the Pope. Make time to see the monument to Victor Emmanuel II, who was the first to rule a unified Italy;it’s a beautiful and magnificent structure. St. Sebastian’s catacombs fascinate all visitors and indicate an older civilization in Rome dead and gone before it was discovered by modern man. St.Peter’s Basilica is also a very impressive structure and so is Santa Maria Degli Angeli Dei Martiri Michelangelo, a church, built from structures of ancient baths. Proceed to Pisa now for the Leaning Tower, Field of Miracles, the Baptistery and the Bell Tower. The next city on our itinerary is Florence, the house of art and culture. Located on river Arno it has the Duomo, Piazza Signoria Square (an open air museum) and Piazza Michelangelo, which gives a breath taking view of the city. The piazza Signoria treasures all statues and famous sculptures from history and myth, and you can also see artists painting amazing caricatures. It is a matter of real pride to be in Florence. Get going to Maranello now, where if you visit the multi-storied Ferrari museum you will be at a loss for words at man’s mastery over an automobile. Powerful, shining and resplendent models of Ferrari, classic and novel, greet you and uplift your mood. Time to go to Venice now the scenic city of waters and the Adrian Sea, which is an archipelago of 118 islands, 170 canals and about 400 bridges. Driving over Mussolini’s bridge of Liberty you take a water taxi to reach St. Mark’s Square via the Giudecca canal. This square is the heart of Venice, where you see the Ducal Palace, the infamous Prison, the Bridge of Sighs, the exquisite Clock Tower and the baroque splendor of St. Mark’s Basilica. You can see George Clooney’s 7 star hotel across the water, the city’s first such hotel. Take a gondola ride in Venice where you would definitely hear a boatman singing an emotional melodious Italian love song simultaneously playing on an instrument, which would make you feel great to be alive. Mama Mia!

 

Austria

Enroute to Innsbruck comes Wattens in Tyrol where you have the Swarovski museum. The label is a global giant with breath taking displays of its unique creations in 60 rooms, a huge display hall and sales counters on the ground floor. The world of crystals opens up for you. A happy discovery is the Chetak horse made in crystal. Go crazy shopping while you can. Innsbruck the second Austrian city is as beautiful as its wallpaper. Dotted with colorful buildings, attractive piazzas and Indian restaurants, the three spots worth seeing are the golden roof/Dahl, an ornate gothic balcony, a building called the wedding cake-Heiblinghaus and a 17th century fountain with the statue of King Leopold V. Enjoy the cool weather and the drizzle it is known for.

Liechtenstein

A country bordering Austria and Switzerland it is very tiny. Its capital is Vaduz a rich prosperous and most scenic city. The ride in the toy train is a must and if you can go around 62 square miles, you could see the entire country. The total population is 37000. It is a tax haven, with more number of companies registered here than people. Liechtenstein is a princely state with the prince living in a majestic castle, a popular tourist destination along with the beautiful and cozy piazzas, vineyards and street cafes. Get your passport stamped for fun that you came to Liechtenstein. All the above countries are blessed by nature and are abundant in scenic beauty and cleanliness. The currency is Euro equal to `78 for 1 Euro. Discipline, rules and laws are abided by. Trams, trains and coaches are popular modes of transport that run punctually, the police are very efficient and quick. Crime is less, so is the population. For miles there is no one in sight. It is slightly costlier than the rest of Europe, so is Innsbruck.
Hope you enjoyed, happy touring! We continue our European journey in the next issue.