Book Giveaway: 100 Places In Italy Every Woman Should Go

July 31, 2012

The fabulous Susan Van Allen has updated her 100 Places In Italy Every Woman Should Goadding budget tips, maps, and online resources to a wonderful list of must-see spots.

You can win this book! To have your name tossed into the hat, just drop a comment on this post before midnight on August 3 EST. You can just say hi, or you can tell us what your favorite place is in Italy (or if you’ve never been to Italy, tell us where you wanna go). Or explain why you must have this book. The contest is open to everyone; if your name is picked from the hat, Susan will send the book to you even if you live at the ends of the Earth.

Grazie Susan, and complimenti!!!


Cover, 100 Places in Italy Every Woman Should Go, by Susan Van Allen


Advice from Susan Van Allen…

Go Solo. Italy is a fantastic place to wander solo, following your very own desires. As Italians are such wonderfully social people, you’ll rarely find yourself feeling lonely….If you are on your own and would like to break up your solo time, log on to Lonely Planet’s Thorntree (, CouchSurfing ( or Connecting Solo Travelers Network ( to find out who else is around that you could meet up with. Or you could join a group tour that’s focused on an active adventure, sightseeing, or a workshop that focuses on your interests. In other words, “I have no one to go with,” doesn’t have to be an obstacle to your Italian travel dreams.

Flirting. There’s a shrink in New York who prescribes a trip to Italy for women who need a boost to their self-esteem. Italian men have mastered the art of flirting—it’s one of the country’s masterpieces. Females of all ages are adored here. Enjoy, without taking it too seriously. It’s all in the spirit of: You are women, we are men. We are alive! And what a fun game we play! If you get harassment rather than flirting, a loud “Vai Via” (”Go Away”) is the age-old stopper, and it usually works.


PS. Susan is offering a “Golden Week in Tuscany” for women only from November 3-10. Check it out here.


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65 comments to Book Giveaway: 100 Places In Italy Every Woman Should Go

  • Margo

    I WANT this book because I love Italy and want to go to all those places and I really love Sicily and miss my time there, and Jann’s blog reminds me of all that’s wonderful about those places!

  • Ciao Jann! Just spent 2 wonderful days wandering the streets of Rome…….. 🙂 Hope you are having a good trip too! It was HOT today!!! Off to Tuscany on Saturday.. This looks like a wonderful book! xoxoxo

  • Tom Russo

    Sicily is such a wonderful place! My wife and sister-in-law are there right now visiting family! Looks like a really interesting book!!

  • Jo Ann Gargano Sparrow

    Please let me win this book! I will be taking the time to visit Italy soon and i really need to know the 100 places in italy every women should go. I want to visit each region so i know the book will be of great value to me. thanks for the opportunity to win this fantastic book.

  • Jill

    So true about the flirting! But also cool to read the comments and see that many of you are planning trips to your ancestral hometowns. I went last year for that purpose and it was great!!

  • My favourite place in Italy so far is Tropea and the area of Calabria, but maybe that’s because it’s the only region I’ve experienced there (as an adult; travelling as an 11 year old doesn’t really count, does it?). Obviously I need to see other cities and regions to ascertain whether or not it really is my favourite place!

  • Lorna LoPrinzo

    Jann, I always look forward to your wonderful posts about Sicily….My grandparents came over on the boat from Mistretta, so it’s my life long dream to be able to live there for a season…to walk in their footsteps. What a great concept for a book this is!! I look forward to using it to plan my escape (!!) before too much more time gets wasted!!!! Thanks for sharing this opportunity!

  • Ella

    A very special place for me in Italy is the Santuario Nostra Signora di Soviore at Monterosso al Mare, Cinqueterre. From here the views are breathtaking, the area is serene and spiritual and this is where my husband I got married.

  • Mimi Loutrel

    San Galgano is one of my favorite places!

  • amy

    I left my heart in Italy. What a great book for any Italy obsessed ladies such as myself!

  • suzanne

    I have been to Italy twice, but wish I could go twice a year!

  • Anitre

    My favourite place in Sicily has to be my little garden in Santa Maria del Focallo. I have a lemon tree, fig tree and I can hear the sea. Bliss! I highly recommend the south eastern tip of the island. The beaches are the best.
    I would love to win the book. Italy has so much to offer! x

    • Jann

      Ciao Anitre–it’s really the little things in life that make for happiness: a lemon tree, a fig tree, and the sound of the sea. I love how you find bliss in that. For me it would be looking over my cupola and hearing the bells ring as I’m sipping a cup of coffee… Bliss…

  • Loretta

    I loved visiting my father’s home town in San Donato Val di Comino about an hour outside rome towards Abruzzo National Park. Beautiful local train ride up the mountains on our first trip and the second trip we took a car from an agriturisomo in Sora. Please visit the monestary there which is a hotel now called Villa Grand Casa. Very beautiful and up to date. Wonderful views of the Comino valley below. I loved Largo Largo the little piazza where my father’s family lives so many years ago.

  • Berenice

    My new favourite place in Italy is Ravello, up in the hills behind Amalfi. Wonderful views, calm and peaceful and the best square to sit in and while the day away, just watching.

  • Lisa

    I can be packed in an Italian minute….Thanks for this offer!!!!! xoxo

  • Italy is a great place to visit any time of the year and Sicily has something for everyone in any season. Its history, its art and its cuisine fully enjoyed by the most sophisticated traveller.
    My readers (5500) are passionate about Italy and they enjoy reading what is about Italy.
    I welcome your stories if you wish to publish them.

  • Tina Peluso

    Read read read its what I love of course in addition to the Puglia region

  • Natalia Coco/Demetre

    I met the love of my life travelling solo,the rest is history,I have been here in Sicily almost 2 years and it has been the best move I ever made. Italian men, you can’t get past the romance,passion and love they have for their girlfriends, wives, children and mothers. They love women in all shapes and sizes. I have never felt as attractive,sexy,confident as I have felt here in Italy. From my first trip to Italy in 1998..Italy has and forever will own my dreams.

    • Jann

      Wow, Natalia. This is quite an endorsement for traveling sola to Italy!!!! Thank you for this comment.

  • Em Renna

    Love your posts and YES would love to win the book.

  • I am so inspired by all these comments–how wonderful to be connected with all of you who love Italy as I do! Grazie to Jann for bringing us all together on her beautiful blog!

  • Grace Polichar

    Thanks you Susan, for sponsoring this lovely flight of fancy… one of my favorite spots is in Sicilia, in the Archeological Park in Siricusa… It’s where the spring exits.. not a gorgeous spot, but very historical… you can see the amphitheater from there, and feel the thousands of souls who’ve stopped by over the centuries… then it’s always nice to cool off in the rope maker’s cave…

    My dream is a road trip to Italy, taking several weeks or months… and many miles..
    Wouldn’t that be fun? Magari…


  • My gf and I started hunting for airlines seat sale last weekend. We plan to visit four countries before the year ends.

    Budget permits, we will visit more countries next year. Hoping to visit Italy soon (Rome, Florence, Venice – our dream destinations).

    If I win this book, I’ll give this to my gf to inspire her more (and will borrow it to her after).

    Thanks a lot in advance. 🙂

  • Susan

    Hi my bags are paked and I totally Imagine myself leaving tomorrow and staying a loooong time! God I wish!!!!!

  • Joan

    I’d love to visit Sicilia!! Of the places I’ve visited so far in Italy I would have to choose either Venice or the Amalfi Coast as my favorites.

  • Toni

    I would love to win this book! My maternal grandparents were from Sicily. I would love to visit all of Italy one of these days. But until then….wouldn’t it be nice to have a book that could take you there.

  • How fun! Great picture of Vernazza on the front cover of the book. Of course, my favorite place is Rome. A no brainer for me. Best place in Rome – 6 or 7am sitting in the Piazza Rotonda looking at the Pantheon while it’s quiet, cool, and most picturesque. That place brings me peace everytime. Love it.

    • Jann

      6 or 7am in Rome–especially summer–is fantastic! Sono d’accordo con te. There’s a great, funky coffee bar just off the main piazza in Trastevere that opens at 5:30 or 6:00 am in the summer, and it’s my favorite. The street sweepers hang out there too, in between picking up the mounds of garbage left from the wildness the night before. But other than the street cleaners, you’ve got Rome to yourself at that hour.

  • Hi Jann, Susan is spot on about Italy as the perfect destination for a woman’s solo travel. I especially enjoyed my time in Florence, Lucca and Siena…meandering from one art- and food-centric place to the next, with time-out in Lucca ( Would love to go again!

  • Anne Begnaud

    Wow! Grazie mille, Susan and Jann! This book has been on my “to read” list as soon as I found out about it. In October, I will be fulfilling my dream of a lifetime, taking a trip to Italy and Sicily! My grandparents were born in the small village of Tusa, on the northeastern coast of Sicily, not far from Cefalu, and I cannot wait to go there.

    My favorite reading genres are travel journals, and all things Italian and Sicilian. Jann, I have a link to your blog in my google homepage, and I enjoy all of your updates and archived photoessays. They are so soulful.

    Thanks for this wonderful opportunity to win what I know is a wonderful book.


  • I’ve wanted to visit Italy all my life. Perhaps I was born with this need to see, hear, touch and taste all things Italian

  • I have been to Rome and Brindisi ( briefly ) and am off to Sicily at the end of summer, and would love this book to decide which part to visit next……


    I would like to win this book so i can greet all the arriving women.

  • Barbara Valenti

    Anxious to read Susan’s book and also to re-visit the land of my dreams! I’ve been to Rome and Sicily, but, there is so much more and I am ready for it! Dreaming of those warm Italian nights and a little passagiata in the piazza. Ciao bella principessa!

  • Lise

    My favorite place in Italy… in the arms of my love. He is Italian, from the south but now living in the north. I plan to move there in 15 months.

    Ciao a tutti!

  • Wow, Jann, I certainly would love to win this book. I visited Sicily for the first time last year, and was profoundly moved by its beauty and ancient wisdom. I visited the villages from where my grandparents emigrated.
    I would love to revisit Sicily and learn about other trips to take in Italy.
    Thank you!

  • Laurie

    A generous contest. Italy was a great experience, loved all of Venice and Rome and like everyone fantasizes about living the dolce vita. I would love to spend the second half of my life explore g Italy- and your book would be a great place to start.

  • What a cool contest! I would love to win this book! I love all of Sicily (guess it’s in my blood), but my 2 favorite places were Cefalu because of its beauty and Taormina because of the joy of just living day to day. The cobblestone streets, the shops where pets are in abundance and everyone closes down mid day, the art of making a meal into an unforgettable experience, this is what made me fall in love with Italy, and especially Sicily.

  • Nancy Hersch

    I love reading about Italy, anything. I have an entire bookcase of books. Anyplace in Italy will do, not sure I have a favorite place. Love visiting family and friends but also enjoy going to cities and villages where I don’t know anyone. I guess I just love Italy.

  • When you know that you can not make a trip to Italy within the next few years, you reward yourself by assimilation of the lifestyle, books, receipes, faces of the country, TV shows of the regions and artwork of the Masters, anything that will take you on your journey to your soul’s home. Walking the streets and seeing the sites through Susan’s eyes will allow me to plan for that eventual sojourn to the land of my heart.

    Vicki Carol

    • Jann

      Vicki–thank you. Such a lovely comment. If this drawing were not random, but based on pulling my heartstrings, you’d already be a winner!

  • I LOVE this book! I’d add the Sassi caves and Matera, but that’s also because I’m biased to the South. 🙂

  • Em

    How fun! I’d love to read this book! My favorite place in Italy is Cortona.

  • Carolyn Rovere

    My favorite place in Italy is Basaldella di Vivaro….my father’s hometown. I haven’t been in over 30 years but would love to set foot there again. And I would LOVE to win this book!

  • Maria

    I am off to Sicilia in 2 weeks

  • –Have I told you lately that “I Looooooooooooooove you, Jann?

    Xxx I do! I do!

  • Jeannie Hardie

    Of course, I must have this book. I have been in love with Italy since I first saw Michaelangelo’s David at age 15 in Florence I hope to explore Le Marche and Abruzzo next year by train and bus and off the beaten track as I want to find a place to live in peace. I am learning the language at Santa Fe Public library and am in love with Il Volo (my family says I am cradle-snatching) and BTW, thank you Jann for Men in Speedos, one of my all time favorites that made this expat Brit miss Europe!

  • Brenda

    I would love to win this book. I have been an Italophile since I was in junior high. I have yet to make it to Italy, but I say YET, as I will. One day, I will!!! I am obsessed with Italians and all things Italy! I’m sure I’d get a lot out of the book being a single female. Thanks!!!

  • Bonnie

    Jann, this would be a great gift to have before arriving this October!!! Thanks for sharing!
    ciao bella~

  • BK

    I would definitely recommend going to Italy solo. I went 8 years ago and it was a life changing experience. I would love to go again. The book looks like a great read. Possibly it will be what I need to inspire me to book a trip! Ciao!

  • I have been wanting to read this!

  • lucy

    Cool…I would love this book! I have tweeted and liked this post. And I love flirting!!! now off to check websites!!

  • Cathy

    Oh Jann I’d LOVE to win this book! There is sooo much more that I want to see in Italy (Sicily being one area for sure!)…and perhaps spend more REAL time (as opposed to trailing around 60+ teens)in a few of the places I have been, like Venice for one. I am definitely checking out Susan’s tours also!

    Buona fortuna a tutti!

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