Winner of the Lowell Thomas Travel Journalism Award.
The world's favorite expert on la dolce vita, Under the Tuscan Sun author Frances Mayes guides readers through Italy's iconic regions, in a book replete with lavish National Geographic images.
This lush guide, featuring more than 350 glorious photographs from National Geographic, showcases the best Italy has to offer from the perspective of two women who have spent their lives reveling in its unique joys. In these illuminating pages, Frances Mayes, the author of Under the Tuscan Sun and many other bestsellers, and New York Times travel writer Ondine Cohane reveal an Italy that only the locals know, filled with top destinations and unforgettable travel experiences in every region. From the colorful coastline of Cinque Terre and the quiet ports of the Aeolian Islands to the Renaissance architecture of Florence and the best pizza in Rome, every section features insider secrets and off-the-beaten-path recommendations (for example, a little restaurant in Piedmont known for its tajarin, a pasta that is the perfect bed for the region's celebrated truffles). Here are the best places to stay, eat, and tour, paired with the rich history of each city, hillside town, and unique terrain. Along the way, you'll make stops at the country's hidden gems--art galleries, local restaurants, little-known hiking trails, spas, and premier spots for R&R. Inspiring and utterly unique, this vivid treasury is a must-have for anyone who wants to experience the best of Italy.
About the Author
Frances Mayes is the author of four bestsellers, Under the Tuscan Sun, Bella Tuscany, Everyday in Tuscany, and In Tuscany. All four are about taking chances, living in Italy, and the "voluptuousness of Italian life." She was awarded the Premio Casato Prime Donne for a major contribution in the field of letters in 2009. A widely published poet and essayist, she has written numerous memoirs, books of poetry, and novels. Formerly a professor of creative writing at San Francisco State University, she now devotes herself full-time to writing, traveling, and restoring an historic garden. She and her husband divide their time between North Carolina and Cortona, Italy.
Ondine Cohane, a contributing editor at Conde Nast Traveler, writes regularly for the New York Times travel section, among many other publications. She has appeared on CNN and Good Morning America, and co-hosts Conde Nast Traveler's Insider Guide series on PBS. Cohane lives in the town of Pienza in Southern Tuscany and owns two boutique hotels.
"A sparkling and irresistible view of Italy... Mayes has a wonderful eye for detail as she lyrically describes her surroundings... Readers will want to take their time, savoring this poetic travelogue like a smooth wine."—Publishers Weekly (starred)
"Here, we are off the beaten track, soaking in the distinctive sunlight, traditional cuisines, architecture, and geographical features of each area...providing delightful trattoria recipes, poetry and anecdotes. Readers will definitely eat well by staying by her whimsical and conversational side."—Library Journal (starred)
"Mayes has arranged her memoir geographically from north to south, rather than chronologically, to allow readers to peruse the sections randomly, perhaps using the book as a companion guide to their own trip. Her descriptions are painterly and alluring, and she includes recipes for memorable dishes-grilled prawns with fennel and olives, sea bream poached in special seasoned broth, lemon ricotta tart, gnocchi with wild hare, and crispy octopus-that are likely to whet the prospective traveler's appetite. A charming homage to upscale travel through Italy."—Kirkus Reviews