Why Travel to a Small Village in Italy?

Margie in Italy

Your Guide to Bella Italia

Savoca, Sicily Photo by Margie MiklasWhile traveling in Italy, I discovered the magic of visiting a small village. This travel off the beaten path allowed me to have a real feel for the people and to experience the local flavor of an area. With no crowds, I was able to see how the people live, listen to the stories they shared, and have incredible photo opportunities.

photo by Margie Miklas

While visiting the village of Colle d’Anchise, a small town of 900 in the hills of Molise, I felt like I was stepping back in time.

Italy Molise Photo by Margie MiklasA woman was carrying greens wrapped in a scarf on her head, a man was sweeping his doorstep with a hand­made broom, and a woman was outside cleaning fava beans, freshly picked from her garden.

For me this travel experience had no price tag, as I was able to see first­hand how real people live today in a place without all the modern conveniences.

Italy. Photo by Margie MiklasIn the nearby smaller village of Longano, the people shared stories of their lives, mostly in Italian and sometimes a little English. In fact I was surprised to learn that some of them actually knew any English. They were especially determined to tell me about any relatives in America, or about any of their own travels to other countries.

To outsiders, life may seem harder, despite being simple, yet the people I met seemed happy, and nobody was complaining or acting rude. Within minutes of arriving in the piazza in Longano, I could see that all the local residents who were outside, knew immediately that I was from someplace else.

They were very curious, asking questions about where I was from, and were eager to continue a conversation. I learned a lot from the local people regarding the simplicity of life and its relationship to happiness.

Italy. Photo by Margie Miklas
The value of these interactions was priceless and I wished I could stay longer. The more we talked the more they seemed to want me to stay. One man invited me and my family to return and stay for a month, promising a home­ cooked meal of pigeon.

Visiting a small non­ touristy village guarantees no crowds, the photo opportunities are endless. Around every corner there was another scene more interesting than the last.

Photo by MArgie MiklasThe men sitting on the church steps were pleased when I asked to photograph them. When I asked an older woman for permission to photograph her, she seemed surprised and asked “perche,” why, then smiled and allowed me to capture the magic of the moment.

Photo by Margie MiklasA visit to a little known place is full of surprises and never disappointing. The memories of the experiences with the people I met will remain with me for a lifetime.

Photo by Margie Miklas ItalyWhat are your experiences with visiting small villages? I’d like to hear your stories so please leave a  comment.

Grazie and Ciao

If you like this post you may be interested to read more about the many small towns and villages I visited during my 3-month solo travel adventure in Italy. Memoirs of a Solo Traveler – My Love Affair with Italy is available on Amazon.comin paperback and Kindle editions, and also Amazon.UK.

Memoirs of a Solo Traveler - My Love Affair with Italy


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