Italy’s Mt Etna erupts
Mt. Etna on the island of Sicily is the largest and most active volcano in Europe, so news of an eruption aren't as rare as you might think – but still, to see lava flowing down the sides of the mountain (so close to populated areas) would be a little disconcerting, I think. (via @spunkygirllogue on Twitter)
John Paul II’s Body to Be Placed in Vatican Basilica
In anticipation of his beatification on May 1, Pope John Paul II's tomb will be moved from the Grotto underneath St. Peter's Basilica to a chapel inside the cathedral. The Vatican is making arrangements to move the tomb now, but the tomb won't even be opened during the process.
As much as I love following a great tour guide around a city, I also dearly love aimless wandering – and these suggested "Saturday strolls" through Naples are an excellent way to add a little bit of structure to your wander without adding anything remotely related to a schedule.
Trevi Fountain Photo Cost Couple 500 Euro
So, umm, yeah – how many times do people need to be fined for climbing on the Trevi Fountain for it to be common knowledge that you really ought not climb onto famous sculptures? Yeesh… (via @MyMelange on Twitter)
Italy’s Legendary Butcher Comes to New York and Boston
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If you live in New York or Boston, will be around at the end of January, & like Italian food… Well, these events should definitely be on your radar. The famous Dante-quoting butcher from Tuscany, Dario Cecchini, is coming your way! (via @NoReservations on Twitter)
Pope John Paul II to be beatified May 1
Whenever a new saint is beatified it's big news, but when the saint in question is the much-loved Pope John Paul II it's exponentially larger. If you'll be in Rome on May 1, expect big crowds at the Vatican. (via @dreamofitaly on Twitter)
Silvio Berlusconi in probe over teenage dancer Ruby
If you haven't been following along with the latest Berlusconi/prostitute/dancer scandals, here's a good recap (with some new information) from the BBC. (via @newsfromitaly on Twitter)
Rome’s busiest train station in chaos after copper theft
Theft of copper wire and cables from a train station in Rome caused a power outage at Termini station (among others) and meant many trains weren't able to get into their stations or up to their platforms.
Rome Hotels Furious Over Tax On Tourists
This is interesting – I'd heard some tourists were upset about the new hotel tax in Rome, but I hadn't heard that the hoteliers themselves were upset. You have to click on the audio link to listen to this NPR story, but it's worth it.
Nightlife in Palermo
The Italian south is known for its love of the night – and Palermo is no exception. Here are a few suggestions for things to do in Palermo in the evening, from concerts and theater performances to live music to dancing.
Italian man shot in head sneezes out bullet
Umm, there's really nothing I can say about this article that isn't in the subtitle: "An Italian man who was struck in the head by a stray bullet during New Year's Eve celebrations is recovering after sneezing the projectile out of his nose." Yeah. Just wow.
Mona Lisa landscape location mystery ‘solved’
An art historian in Italy claims she knows the location that served as the backdrop for one of the world's most famous portraits – and that for many years has been a mystery.