One of my goals of this year was to travel more sustainably and today, I want to share with you some tips and what I have learned in my trip to Italy (definitely one of my favorite places on earth)!
Let's start with the essentials: the packing
We have decided to travel by train during the two week vacation. And since we will be hoping from one train to another, it's key to have a minimalistic packing. And of course trying to use only environmentally-friendly products.
I selected a small sample of clothes and neutral colors that can be easily combined. The good thing of not having a huge luggage is that the decisions on 'what to wear today' were quick and simple. I limited also the amount of shoes I took: I took my running shoes; comfy and elegant sandals, lightweight flip flops for the beach and casual white sneakers for our intense walking tours!
I also prepare my eco-friendly travel kit: I took solid products to avoid any type of plastic: a nettle & white clay based solid shampoo & oat milk based solid conditioner from Cha. Cosmétiques, a creamy and nourishing soap bar and coconut scented organic shea butter body lotion bar from Mido Made. They are the best. They take less space and they have no packaging. I also love to pack products that have multiple uses such as the Brocoli Oil from Cha Cosmetics to nourish my hair and moisturize my skin.
Now that I am ready with the packing, let the journey begin!
First stop by train: Italian speaking SwitzerlandBefore arriving to Italy, we did a stop in Lugano which is approximately 4 hours from Lausanne, where I live nowadays. This is the Swiss canton of dolce vita where you start already to feel Italian vibes. 100% recommended.
On that weekend, there was an event in the city: StraLugano. Basically, it is a sports event of 21KM, 10KM, 5KM, Kids Run and a Charity Run.
This event motivated me even more to continue my training of the 10KM I will run by the end of October. We always mention the importance of taking care of ourselves and even during vacations, we recommend you to keep yourself active, even 10 min can be enough!
It's not simple to fit it in your agenda, my tip is to wake up early and do your sport session before the breakfast so you're done for the day.
During the day we visited different places like the historical centre and we had a nice walk. The walk by the lake is stunning! The blue water and fresh air you can breath makes the experience totally worth it.
I love to bring with me refreshing drinks to these walking tours such as Kombucha, which is my favorite.
Check our selection of Kombucha drinks from Nycha, that have a delicious taste, are Swiss made and they are 100% organic.
Second stop by train: BolognaOr La "Rossa" (the red) one of the nicknames of this city. Originally it referred to the red rooftops and reddish buildings of the historical center of Bologna.
We arrived to our destination around lunch time and the weather was just perfect! Sunny and warm.
The foods, the wine the people: it is a city full of life. The fact that it is home of many universities and more importantly the oldest university in the world (University of Bologna), make it even more interesting.
Bologna is the capital and largest city of the Emilia-Romagna region in Northern Italy. The Porticoes of Bologna or the arches are an important cultural and architectural heritage of Bologna and represent a symbol of the city together with the numerous towers.
With the sightseeing, for me it's key to put some comfy clothes, such as leggings or a crop top that goes with my jeans, Labisk.ot has many options. And since I have a lot of hair, the hot weather can be intense for me if my hair is not tight up. The sustainable scrunchies are my way to go!
We spent 4 days there and we did not get enough :)
A must have: We spend one afternoon at le serre dei giardini in the Giardini Margherita :) It is a place that respects sustainability and offer local products and a nice atmosphere. Go there for a drink, for lunch or dinner.
Third stop by train: Pisa and it's infamous leaning tower!So, from Bologna, it is about 2 hours train ride to arrive and the train station is really close to the centre.
We spent two days there and walked around the city. We never needed to take a bus or a taxi. Walking is so nice when it is possible, it makes you discover the many tiny streets and hidden gems of any city.
Pisa is cute and apart from the infamous leaning tower, we liked the open air bars all around the streets.
One tip: go to the Pisa leaning tower in the evening. It is less crowded and you can enjoy the view with calmness🙃
When you are out for a whole day, make sure to keep your skin protected with sunscreen and moisturized with the one and only Broccoli Oil from Cha. Cosmétiques. It is the perfect size to travel and can be used for both hair and face.
Fourth stop by Train: Isola d'Elba
We went from Pisa to Piombino Marittima where we took the Ferry and in only one hour arrived to Portoferrario in Isola d'Elba.
We spent 5 days on the island, we enjoyed few days at Ottone beach. it is on the eastern side of the gulf of Portoferraio and from there you have a beautiful view of the old part of the town with its lighthouse. Then, we went to another part of the island: Capo Sant’Andrea. It is situated on the western headland of Elba, it is the most mountainous part of the island. The beaches were amazing and we enjoyed some walks and swims there.
We basically did not need any car to reach the beaches, everything was done by foot :) we made sure to choose our hotels close to the sea. A blog will follow with more details on these 5 amazing days spent on the island of Elba. It was amazing and worth the stay for sure!
Fifht stop by Train: FlorenceFrom Portoferrario we took the ferry back to Piombino Marittima and then the train to Florence. It was around 3 hours.
In Florence, the capital city of the Tuscany region, we spent two days :) It is the 2nd time I visit this beautiful and romantic city. I love it.
The Duomo of the Cathedral of Santa Maria del Fiore, Uffizi Gallery, Ponte Vecchio, The world-famous Renaissance statue "David" of Michelangelo and the Basilica of Santa Croce are the main places to visit. Again, everything by foot is doable.
One tip from me to you: If you love focaccia, there is one address that you will love: All'Antico Vinaio, we went once per day :) haha
Everything is super fresh, sourced locally and made in front of your eyes. There are also many options, from vegetarian, to ham or the truffle specialities, you will love it!
Time to come back home by TrainAs I am writing these last words, I am in the train back to Lausanne. It was really nice to have such vacation and travel by train. It's a different experience but I recommended.
We can make the difference, and every action counts. Don't stop travelling, but start changing the way you travel, if possible of course. It is something.
Hope you enjoyed reading!