Things to do, Places to See.
Written by Megan February 9, 2015
Three weeks have gone by in the blink of an eye since my arrival here in Paderno and I am finding it difficult to wrap my head around this concept. In a way it feels as though I have been living here for much longer due to how comfortable and at home I feel, but, like I said, it has only been a few weeks. One major factor contributing factor to the time illusion is the relationships with the other Cimbians I have had the opportunity to develop. I know it might sound crazy, but I feel pretty confident saying that I have gotten to know my CIMBA friends as well as, if not better, than my friends from home. Although it is still many weeks away, just the thought of saying goodbye to these new faces gives me goose bumps! Thank heavens we still have 10 weeks, and many more adventures ahead of us this semester. I have not only had the chance to form new bonds with my fellow classmates, I have also had the opportunity to get out and explore some of the neighboring cities of Paderno during some of the down time I have had. So, what have I been up to, eh?
Well in my book, the front runner of the nearby towns is Bassano del Grappa. Hands down. In these past few weeks I have been to Bassano three times and am planning to head that way this Friday evening to see what else can be discovered there. Its seems as though every time I visit this charming town, I find something new that causes me to love it even more than I already do. Located just south west of Paderno, Bassano is super easy to get to. It is so convenient to just hop on the bus after class and head for town for a change of scenery, to find a quiet study spot, grab some dinner or just wander around. We first discovered Bassano by accident on our way back from Venice, little did we know we would find such a charming little town so close by!
One of my favorite things to do there is jump on the bus after class and watch the sunset from one of the highest point of town. The view is stunning. When we first visited, we stumbled upon a rocky ledge that provides the perfect view of the sunset overlooking the river, bridge and the rest of the city. This hidden spot is excellent due to the fact that it is tucked up in a quiet corner away from all the hustle and bustle, making for a perfect little escape. Another hidden gem of Bassano is Augustiner BrauMuchen, a very small German bar just off the river. This is another place that we just so happened to come across during my inaugural trip to Bassano. It is the perfect place to spend the evening people watching from the porch or testing your Italian on some of the locals; and the people that work there make the experience even better. All in all, from the unique shops, bars and restaurants to the little surprises I encounter every time I wander the streets, I must say I have a soft spot for Bassano del Grappa.
Next up is the picturesque little town of Asolo. When strolling the cobblestone streets of this adorable little place, it is hard not to be amazed by the constant views and the authentic Italian charm. In addition, Asolo is on the list of 1,000 places to see before you die. So obviously it is a must-see kind of place. Not only did THE Ernest Hemmingway live and write here back in the day, but this gorgeous little town is home to a few CIMBA professors. Who, coming from experience, would be delighted to show you around town. Simone Bigolin, my Operations Management professor, is one of those kind-hearted souls. One Sunday afternoon, Simone led a group of students on a hike to Asolo and acted as our private tour guide showing us his favorite spots in his home town. What a day.
Upon arrival, we followed our noses and discovered some of the most amazing fresh pastries and hot wine I have ever tasted. Ever. It’s safe to say that is was not long before the rest of the group came flocking in search of these mouthwatering treats.
As we snacked we waited for our table at Simone’s favorite restaurant, where I had some of the most amazing gnocchi I have ever tastes. It was unreal. The fact that we had just hiked five miles to get there might have played into the fact that it was so good, but if you have the chance to go to Asolo, this is certainly where it’s at. At CIMBA, Asolo is also famous for the Picasso Pizza – a pie that was crafted by a student many years ago that was so well liked that the owners of the restaurant made the wise decision to add it to their menu! Other than the phenomenal food we indulged in, Asolo is a wonderful little place to just stroll around. It sits up on a hill, so it seems as though no matter where you go there is a spectacular view. Just do it.
Crespano del Grappa, a short 15 minute walk from campus is also a noteworthy little town. It is the home of Pizza Billy’s, a tiny pizza joint that does what every American wishes all restaurants do, delivers. On a moped of all vehicles. They are rather popular here at CIMBA, as they pay a visit or ten to campus almost every day. Crespano is about twice the size of Paderno equipped with a few restaurants, a grocery store, a few bars, a couple places to get gelato and countless stores. Some days I like to wander over there to do homework in a quiet café or for a break from the cafeteria food.
But what Crespano is most famous for is their Sunday market. Clothes, knick-knacks, fresh produce, food trucks, souvenirs and much more, they have it all. The market is set up every Sunday morning for a few hours from approximately 8:00-1:00. It is definitely a cool experience seeing the usual empty streets flooded with vendors and hundreds of locals. This an excellent place to snag something to bring back for mom and dad to prove you actually went to Italy.
I could go on and on discussing all of the countless places and things to do around campus, but it would be impossible to fit them all into this blog post. These are just to name a few. I have been here for three weeks and I am still walking around in awe of all of the views, and experiences I have had. I certainly hope this effect never wears off in the remaining weeks here. I have many more things to discover and places to see! Next up Athens and Santorini, Greece next weekend. Ciao for now!