I've got serious wanderlust at the moment. I'm probably not going to get to leave the country this year due to saving to buy a house, and of course, there's literally nothing I want to do more right now. When it's so miserable outside, the thought of a little sunshine in your future can make everything seem a little better.
I've been to Italy twice in the past few years, and I'd really love to sneak in a trip this year. It's hard to talk myself out of it because I know that it's really easy to do on a budget - there are some great hotel deals on Venere, and along with Easyjet flights, Florence is calling my name. I'm having to chant savings, savings, savings to myself... but, you know. Maybe NEXT year.
If you can get away this year though, I do SO recommend Florence. It's beautiful, and the shopping is fantastic. There is a huge market that sells beautifully made leather bags like this one (not to mention this one!) and every place we ate at was amazing. So while you jet off (and I explode with jealousy), I will give you my top 5 things to do in Florence:
1. Grab a slice at Totos. It doesn't look like much from the outside, but it was the best pizza I ever had.
2. Visit the markets - there are some great bargains to be had! I wish I'd bought a mask.
3. Eat Gelato from Caffe delle Carrozze. The peanut butter one is out of this WORLD.
4. Explore the jewellery stores on the Pontevecchio.
5. Walk! Take it all in. Although it's a fairly touristy place, it still feels very authentically Italian and it's beautiful to look at.
There's also a really good train service to other parts of Italy, so if you're there for a little bit, why not explore further and visit Lucca, or Pisa?
SIIIIIGH. Oh well. Instead of jetsetting abroad this year, instead I'm planning lots of minibreaks around the UK to visit friends - free accommodation, and bonus awesome company. It pays to have friends scattered about the place, you know.