Friday, October 1, 2010


With the hopes of finding folks on their terrace flinging free prosciutto di Parma to passersby near and far, we headed to Parma.

What did we find?

You might be surprised*!

Suggested Stay:

A day trip. But make it a solid day.

Getting To Parma:

We eagerly jumped in our rental car and made the brief 2-hour drive from our home base stay in Monte-
rosso (Liguria). The drive proved a rewarding and relaxing treat of the Italian countryside. Wide and rocky riverbeds... mountain-top villages... fascinating farmlands. The views were part of the experience, so what's not to love?

Must See & Do:

La Filoma ~
Our native Italian hosts named this ristorante their favorite place to eat when in Parma. So when we arrived and saw La Filoma was not yet open for dinner, our hearts sank. Twice.

Our amichi Italiano heart-swear La Filoma's ham is molto bene. So, if you treat your belly to La Filoma... drop us an email at and let us know what you experienced.

The Fidenza Outlet Malls ~

If you miss shopping large outlet malls while in Italy, you can get your "fix" on at the grandiose Fidenza Village. Located just outside Parma, the Fidenza outdoor mall looks a lot like Texas shopping set in the backdrop of a large parking lot sprouting up-and-coming trees. One inside, you'll be treated some some great shopping in a centralized "shop-till-you-drop" location.

favorite finds?

Camper ~ For unique, hip and quirky shoe wear. Believe it or not, I left with a pair of flip-flops where the left "flip" and right "flop" designs were different from one another.

Gallo ~ For colorful clothing including ties, beachwear and bags. Here at Gallo I dropped a few Euros for an irresistible multi-striped one-piece bathing suit for my Texas friends' little girl. Oh, the Italian flair!

Lindt ~ This place is a must stop for luscious chocolates, candies and anything sweet. Wearing stretch pants in advance of entering Lindt is highly recommended. You'll need them for the ride home. The cioccolato fondente gelato was like a super-soft frozen chocolate. I wrote O.M.G. in my journal on the drive back, which loosely translates to "Oh, My Gelato!"

Obikà ~ For Mozzarella di Bufala Campana (DOC) set in spirit of a Japanese sushi bar, why not enjoy some fried mozzarella and wine in between segments of extreme shopping?! What's the rush?

Traditional shopper? No worries! If you're looking for brands familiar to the US, you'll also find Fossil, Puma and Calvin Klein (just to name a few).

Explore more Fidenza Village online here.

Other must-see stops include the Baptistery of Parma and The University of Parma, one of the oldest universities in the world.

* While we didn't find the folks flinging ham from their balconies, we did find a few things that showed us the "charma di Parma." Check out more pictures from Parma on my Flickr stream and learn an amazing story about the two trees shown above.

Our Next Adventure:

Experience Italian life to the fullest in the fast lane!

We're headed to Maranello, home of fabulous Ferrari factory. Strap yourselves in for one awesome ride!

for the love of : italy

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