Archive - July 2015

8 picture-postcard European villages taken out of a fairy tale
European sweet charm: Yummy desserts from Rome to Paris

8 picture-postcard European villages taken out of a fairy tale

We think you need something rare to find, well-preserved, charming, traditional but also with a modern twist while it maintains it’s old-European charm…. Something inviting, both for nature/mountain lovers and romantic souls too!

Purple Travel wanderers have been hopping up from town to town to bring you the most charming European villages taken out of a fairy tale, postcard-like gems; your imagination travels miles away, it’s like they’ve been taken out of a magnificent canvas or a historic-mystery story to put a spell on us, captivating our mind and soul long time after our journey! We present you some of the most worldly, post-card destinations hidden away somewhere in Europe, encircled with beguiling lush gardens and majestic waterfalls or standing as if they were ”royal kings” upon sylvan hillsides…. All worth adding them to your travel bucket list!

1. Cinque Terre, Italy
The 5 Lands of Nothern Italy

Cinque Terre

Cinque Terre

The picturesque fishing towns of Cinque Terre, frankly, will capture our soul! It’s a dramatic coastal scenery, amidst sheer cliffsides, where winding paths are surrounded by colorful Venetian buildings, the rugged shoreline is washed by crystal-clear blue while these imposing mountains are looming over magical vineyards… Some cobblestone foothpaths are the only way to get from one hamlet to the other. Rest assured, that these jaw-dropping views of the sunset where pieces of the shoreline are tumbling into the deep blue, will surely leave you spellbound!

2. Santorini, Greece
The romantic gem of Aegean

Santorini by night

Santorini by night

The treasured volcanic-gem of the Aegean is calling you and you should definitely answer immediately!
This island is a a geological gallery set amid the deep blue of the Aegean… You can’t resist to its’ mythical charm, high craggy cliffs and white-washed sugarcube houses spilling down to the azure blue of Aegean Sea… The most famous thing about Santorini, though, it’s these magical jaw-dropping, wine-colored sunsets! The island is one of the most popular wedding destinations, there is a reason the title ‘’Greek Romance’’ features every year on travel magazines around the world! Experience the ultimate romantic journey as you explore one of Santorini’s ‘’painting-lands’’: Imerovigli, Fira, Oia & Firostefani are usually called the ‘’Caldera’s eyebrow’’, it’s easy to figure out why, as all these marvellous hamlets offer the most dramatic, stunning views of the volcano!

However, it would be a crime not to share with you the 3rd main reason that you have to visit Santorini. The ultimate gastronomic oasis is here! A real haven of culinary delights along with its’ aromatic fine wines such as the popular sweet Vinsanto or dry Athyri and Assyrtiko; it’s the perfect romantic dinner for two, while you’re plunging into these eye-watering sea views!

Purple Secret Tip:
1. Head to Oia for the most out-of-this-world sunset of your lifetime!
2. Don’t forget to explore one of the smaller traditional villages and soak up their lovely atmosphere; whether you seek pure tranquility or cosmopolitan aura, Santorini can offer you both!

3. Sintra
The mysterious Portuguese beauty

Tower Palace Quinta Da Regaleira

Tower Palace Quinta Da Regaleira

Here, there is an array of wild forests soaked by small lakes and exotic grassy mountains embrace gleaming Medieval castles,  palaces and royal retreats… We present you Sintra, a well-preserved and Unesco’s World Heritage town of Portugal!

The whole place is dotted with enchanting mansions set on hillsides spilling down to the deep blue of the Atlantic ocean, it’s like a fairytale taken out of a romantic-historic story…. A jagged 18th-century-Portuguese castle built by Celts (or Moors) waiting for you to explore it’s majestic historical charm!
Filled with a romantic aura sheltering every corner, it’s the place to be with your sweetheart! Don’t leave Sintra without visiting the magnificent, beautifully mysterious‘’ Castelo dos Mouros’’, which was finished by King Ferninard II in 1830, it’s out-of-this-world!

4. Albarracín, Spain
The uncommon side of Spain



The scenic village of Albarracin lies in the Aragon region. It’s  encopassed by flagged hillsides and a rugged scenery along with half wood-covered houses with a dusky-red color. Stroll around rocky pathways, winding routes and let yourself to capture the essence of its ancient maze-like charm through magnificent castles and lovely chapels. Towering above this rugged spooky landscape lies a Mudejar-style cathedral based on Islamic art…

5. Portofino, Italy
Cosmopolitan and glamour tunes in Italian Riviera



Are you fancy seeing celebrities passing by your side while you’re taking a walk on the promenade? Then look no further to our favorite Italian marvel, Portofino! Stroll around the Liliputian gleaming harbor or head to the popular Punta del Capo, visit the castle and unwind while sipping your delicious espresso, all sound absolutely inviting right? Portofino make us imagine a famous writer weaving a novel of romance and mystery and there’s a reason you’ll capture this kind of mood… Picture-perfect lush gardens at the edge of steep cliffs and white-grey shades of luxury yachts mirrored at the cerulean waters of Ligurian Sea! What not to love in Portofino?

Purple Secret Tip: Escape the hustle and bustle of the city centre and dive into Lavagna, Paraggi or Camogli
* Portofino may be a bit pricey but you should definitely visit it once in your lifetime!

6. Lugano, southern Switzerland
‘’Atemberaubende Ausblicke’’ ( stunning vistas)



“Those who dwell among the beauties and mysteries of the Earth are never alone or weary of life.”
– Rachel Carson –

Natural-worshippers get ready! We present you the Swiss paradise where Italians meet-up on their weekend breaks… Except for its’ natural treasures, Lugano is the 3rd most important banking centre in the country!  A blessed place filled with blooming parks, mansions, boutiques and lovely bistros cuddling the maze of these cobblestone alleys that unscramble at the end of Ticino’s mountain-based lake…

7. Ronda, Spain
A two-faced tale in Spain



It’s one of the oldest town of Spain which has been declared as Property of Cultural Interest! Set in a dramatic location on El Tago canyon, surrounded by imposing towering sierras, Ronda will hypnotize you …The town is Malaga’s province and frankly, one of most charming! Welcome to Ronda! Its’ old town dates back to Islamic Era and the whole town is halved into two areas, the Arab-aged with its medieval beauty and the other area, with a modern twist, which poped up after the 16th century… Rocky bridges unite the two pieces of the town which is a great part of the famous ‘’Whitewashed Villages’’.

Purple Secret Tip: Ronda was once Ernest Heminway’s secret place to unwind; it was one of his favorite source of inspiration…

8. Hallstatt, Austria
The most pictured European village with 7000y of history



Nature-worshippers and landlubbers will surely fell in love with Hallstatt… We are sure that you’ve already seen thousands of travel posters featuring this fairy-tale austrian town! The whole town is a storybook spilling down to the Hallstätter See, between a crystal-clear lake and imposing mountains providing the ultimate dazzling backdrop – Now you know why thousands of wanderers are extremely passionate to take countless of photos here! – The collection of beautiful pastel-coloured houses dotted with blooming gardens, creating amazing shimmering reflections into the stained-glass waters of the lake, this fabled beauty would be enough to guarantee its’ fame around the world…

Purple Secret Tip: A stroll away from the centre, Mühlbach waterfall vie for your attention, you’ll be under its’s spell for a long long time!




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Our Purple Foodie buff explores the world-class sweet treats in a flavorful journey from ancient Rome to classy Paris!

Savory cornerstones of Italian Bliss

There are many reasons why you’ve been captivated by this city: It’s snacking alleys, enchanting piazzas, glorious ancient history, unbeatable style, but, come one, between us, we know why you could fell in love with Rome! These luscious goodies are torturing and torturing sweetly your mind…Is there any excuse not to be captivated with a flavorful tiramisu, a crispy creamy cannoli, a cornetti along with a tasty cappuccino, a fluffy millefoglie cake or a delicious frozen treat as the Italian gelato? Of course not!

Our ”Purple Wanderers”  have put together a list of  dazzling treats…The ”Eternal City” is calling you and it’s time for you to answer!


Pana Cotta: Holy Grail of Italian Creamy Puddings


Place: Ristorante alla Rampa

This amazing lightly sweetened cream can truly blown your mind away! In Rome, every Ristorante serves the ”Italian Holy Grail”,  the creamy lady ”panna cotta”! Drizzled by everything from blueberries to fresh strawberries, raspberries or caramel sauce, it will be your perfect friend for a memorable experience after your dinner…


Tiramissu: Keep Calm and Espresso yourself

Place: Bar Pompi

Visit the famous ”Bar Pompi” and you’ll see why its the best in Rome! Some espresso layers with soaked ”lady fingers”- little sponge cakes looking like a cookie – and creamy mascarpone, you will be swooning with joy by its unique taste! Spoil yourself trying one of these amazing non-classic flavors of tiramissu such as strawberry, pistachio, banana and Nutella!


Cannoli: The crispy Sicilian

Italian Sicilian Cannoli

Crispy yummilicious!


Place: Ciuri Ciuri

Piped with ricotta cheese, this combination of light sweetness and crispy feeling , its unbeatable! This one sounds to you a bit ”decadent”? If, yes, grab a bite from a smaller version, a lovely cannolini!


Cornetti: Wake-up calling from the ”Vienna-style” pastry




Place: Barberini
As walking in Barberini’s cafe, you’ll be charmed in a flash by this savory work of art. Buttery and so ”wacky”, the cornetti it’s the perfect buddy for your morning cappuccino!

Purple Tip: Frankly, you should try the cornetti con crema!


Millefoglie: The creamy Italian 


Mille-feuille a la Italia

Italian can do it too!


Place: Cavaletti
You’ve already taste this touthsome cream-layered dessert in reams of versions around the world, but, surely, Italy, has been gifted at making pastry miracles so delightful! The millefoglie here will bowl you over!


Gelato: The frosty Italian miracle

Frosty Italian Treats - Gelato

Italian Gelato rocks!


Place: Gelateria I Caruso
We have shared with you the sweet tooth treasures in Rome, honestly, if we don’t tell you about Gelateria I Caruso, this mini guide would be imperfect! You can’t leave from Rome without seeing live the master gelato maker…Grab some scoops and don’t forget to spice it up with the famed zabaglione (marsala-famous sweet wine made in Sicily).

Purple Tip: Definitely give a try to pistachio & fiordipanna flavor



Délicieux treasures

Paris will always be a gastronomic destination full of surprises! There are so many sweet delicacies that you’ll not guess which one mesmerized you! Its truly hard to resist on those unbeatable pastries, delightful chocolate truffles, lovable macaroons, heavenly mini lemon pies or the splendid mouth-jolt eclairs! We have to remind you what Oscar Wilde wrote once about the world of desserts: “The only way to get rid of a temptation is to yield to it” and we are utterly agreeable to it! So, sit back and get a load of our mouthwatering list, let’s explore the Parisian delights to die for!


Viennoiseries: Epicure Honoree on our breakfast

French Croissant for breakfast

Mini Chocolate Croissant


Place: Le Moulin de la Vierge, Blanquet Claude



Who wouldn’t be fond of these amazing cute pastries, known as ‘‘viennoiseries” such as the chocolate croissant or the favored ”crème de la crème”, ideal to hang out with our morning espresso! Heading to Le Moulin de la Vierge or to Blanquet Claude, both, claim to be the finest paths to our Parisian goodies!

Purple Tip: Pierre Hermé or as the Parisian call it ”The Picasso of pastry” is the top-notch place to start tasting the sweet side of life!


Cannelés: Little flavorful thieves




Place: Baillardran & Eric Kayser



A sweet tooth in Bordeaux region is surely a must and we assure you that these little custardie cakes will be quite ”deleterious”, so tempting! Canneles are small with spongy custard centre and a caramelised crust, agreeing with everything from your breakfast to dinner, coffee to champagne!


Mille-feuille: Oldie Grand Napoleon



Place: La Pâtisserie des Rêves (“The Bakery of Dreams”)



The well-known creamy treasure has captivated our taste buds from the 17th century! Mille-feuille, also known as the ”Napoleon”, translates to a ”sea” of crispy layers, which have been folded many times. A gooey Puff pastry and a lovely creamy filling  glazed with fondant/icing will dazzle your palate, leaving you absolutely speechless! It’s ideal to go with a summer brunch or a romantic elegant dinner!


Lemon tart/pie: A sunny gentle Princess



Place: L’heure Gourande Cafe & Au Thé Gourmand Tea-House



Don’t you dare to leave the ”City of Lights” without tasting a savoring slice of a lemon pie! With silky meringue or sweetened lemon curd is a Paleo twist in the classic version of the Parisian dessert.


Macaroon: Colorful Liliputian Goodies




Place: Pierre Herme



We’ve been hooked by these babyish round delicacies, a rainbow-gaudy dessert, which is emblematic for the French pastry art.
Pierre Herme is famed for its delicious picture-perfect macaroons known for their unusual flavors! What not to love: rose, macha marron -reminding us mont blanc flavor-, chocolat, mogador -which is passionfruit milk choc-, cafe & montebello -which combines raspberry with pistachio ganache-, just irresistible!


Eclair:  Mr McDreamy’s Charm



Place: Traditional bakeries such as La Pâtisserie de l’Eglise, Le Moulin de la Vierge, La Pâtisserie des Rêves & L’Éclair de Génie

We came across with the latest pastry ”Queen” in Paris and that’s the ”wordéclair” (meaning lightning). Why they’ve translated it like that? Because this yummy French delicacy can be eaten in a ”flash of light”! The most revolutionary place to taste the French bonbon is at L’Éclair de Génie! Adam, the owner, features sweet masterpieces of art, a visual standout like never before! They transformed this classic dessert into a modern canvas with a high-end quality! Clingy high-gloss finishes with pop-art colors adorned with well-known digital images from famous paintings like ”Mona Lisa”, ”The Creation of Adam” or ”The Vitruvian Man”. The flavors ara enlivened with offbeat ingredients like fresh strawberries, salted caramel, popcorn
and much more!


+Must Visit in Paris:

Angelina, where Coco Chanel ate once, try this scandal amazing Mont Blanc

Ladurée, taste all these incredible desserts appeared on ‘’Marie Antoinette’’

Glacier Berthillon for a caramel-ginger gelato


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