Wednesday, July 26, 2017

8 things you can't miss to visit in the elegant Vienna!

If you have followed last week my Instagram story and Facebook page, you should know that I have been in Vienna (and not only) for holidays. And as I promised, here it is a new #TravelNote about my stay in the Austrian capital city!
So I prepared a list of “8 things you can’t miss to visit in Vienna”. HERE WE GO!

1) The huge St. Stephan’s Cathedral

Situated in the heart of the city, when you get out from the subway stop Stephansdom, you will see it in front of you! It became through the years the city’s symbol and its spire, one of the highest in the world, can be seen almost from every corner of Vienna.

2) Have a walk in Wonderland!

I am just kidding, but doesn’t it seem a place from a storybook? It is actually the Hundertwasser village, an alternative neighborhood projected by the homonym artist and architecture. Its goal was to “make happy” a not so wealthy neighborhood of Vienna. And I think he succeed with his idea. It is absolutely my favourite area of the city! 
Have a look at the public toilets!!! 

3) Visit Hofburg … what?
Hofburg, situated not so far from the center of the city, was for many centuries the heart of the Austrian power. Today it is the current Presidential residence. Not bad. 

4) Go back to the past with Sisi museum
Have you ever heard about the beautiful princess Sisi with very long hair? Well, if you entered inside the Hofburg there’s a big museum dedicated to her and to silverware used by the Royal family. This in the picture is only the centerpiece (and I did not manage to photograph all of it!) 

5) Schönbrunn: Sisi's house
Schönbrunn castle is the famous Vienna’s imperial palace. The queue to enter can be sometimes very long, so I suggest to book from your sofa at home. (click here to book)

6) Be kissed by art!
Did you recognize it? It is the famous painting The Kiss by Gustav Klimt. The real one! You find it inside the huge Galerie Belvedere and there you will find many other Austrian/German and other famous artists such as Monet. 

7) It’s time to have fun!

I love so much amusement parks! So I couldn’t miss to visit this one! Its name is Prater and is well known for the panoramic wheel. A ride is highly recommended! 

8) Have a sacher cake 

After have visited all the main places of the city, sit in a typical café, relax and have a delicious piece of cake. The one I suggest, and perhaps the most famous, is the sachertorte, which is a chocolate cake served with cream.

See you next Wednesday with a new #TravelPost about Prague! And Friday, too, with a new video on YouTube!

And to finish, I want to congratulate with arianna.michi and fedegattolini who guessed where I had to go through my Instagram stories :D

If you have any question about Vienna, send me a tweet at @itsphilworld with the hashtag #TravelPost. Bye!!!

Monday, July 24, 2017

A hot and weird summer day

In these days, it is particularly hot, for not talking the high percentage of humidity that does not let you breath.
Yesterday evening I felt a bit weird, so I went to sleep at around 9 pm, a little bit early, isn’t it? And before going to bed a switched off my mobile and put it inside my bedside table. It was like I didn’t want hear anybody, I didn’t want to see anyone, I didn’t want to do something, I wanted to be seen. So I slept, slept, and slept till this morning. You know when I woke up? It was 12 am!!! Like I slept for almost 15 hours?!? It’s not me! I mean, yes, I like sleeping, but not that so long. In the afternoon my mood was the same, perhaps even worst. My mind was like exploding, and the only things I did was laying on my bed or eating, not because I was hungry, but because I had a sort of “mental block”.

It sometimes happens. It sometimes happens that I have this “mental block”. It’s not the first time that happens. Other times it lasted for days, or even a pair of weeks. But now I said I have enough of it. I must say STOP to this fucking sick state of mind. Do I really want to reach my dreams? If so, how can I reach them if I lay the whole time on my bed? Wait! Today is Monday! I have to write my #PhilsDiary post! Yes, yes. I know nobody reads what I write. But I don’t care! Because I love so much my blog and it is one of the things I do I love most. Probably I will never have a big blog of success, but at least when I will be old I can say “at least I tried!”. And then, I write also for myself. It will be nice to read what I wrote in this personal public diary (who really knows me, knows that I am somewhat addicted to diaries).

What I wanted to tell you with this post, if you’re reading it, is that sometimes it is ok to be a little bit sad or to have troubles, because you know that the sun does not shine every day, some days it rains and the poor gypsy street cats get all wet. Nevertheless, the most important thing is that you ALWAYS rise from that dark pit and that you will NEVER GIVE UP on your dreams.

Love you,
your Phil

If you missed, watch on my YouTube channel my first episode of #PhilTries, where I try sweets from my last trip :D

See you this Wednesday with a new #TravelNote post! 

Wednesday, July 12, 2017

8 things you absolutely need when you travel

Sometimes even the most desired journey can be wearisome. That long travel that never ends, the hot weather that does not help you or being sit in the small chair of the airplane can be exhausting. This “Travel Note” is different from the others because I am not going to talk about a specific place, but this time I am going to give you a list of tips to make the tiring trip a little bit more enjoyable, all thought but Phil, obviously! Here we go with the “8 things you absolutely need when you travel”.

1) a camera

It’s true that the best memories are kept in your heart, but wouldn’t it be a pity to go to New York and not even have a picture in Times Square? Bring with you a camera, not obligatory a big and expensive one, but just a little digital one which is perfect to keep it in your purse.
I use my Nikon waterproof camera which takes discrete pictures. I suggest a camera rather than the cell phone because you are not distracted with the various applications, and besides it makes you a real traveler!

2) Happy and catchy music
As I said before sometimes a trip can be very long, maybe even endless. So why not to listen to your favourite songs, and sing along with your travel companions? For instance, I love to listen to my favourite pop stars such as Lady Gaga, Katy Perry or Madonna, while I fly above the clouds.

3) A book

In the frenetic everyday life can be hard to have time to read a good book, so why not to take the chance to do it while you’re waiting your number gate at the airport? I personally do not read so much, but I think that life is too short to waste time, so when I travel I like to bring something to read.

4) A good rucksack

 When you have arrived at your destination, you will probably walk a lot, buy many souvenirs for friends and family, and then you get thirsty and need to drink. And where do you keep all these things? I usually use this green Eastpack rucksack, which is big enough to keep all my things.

5) Comfortable shoes

Do not attempt to travel or go sightseeing with high heels or with sandals. You will regret it so badly! Instead, wear a pair of shoes that are comfortable, you are used to walk with. On my luggage I bring both my beloved converses and my sneakers.

6) A power bank for your cell phone

You have a lot of missing calls because your friends want to know in which part of the world you are, but your cell phone is out of charge and can’t contact anyone? My biggest suggestion is to buy a good power bank (because there are also the cheap ones and do not work). For this one I paid 10 euros, so it is not that big deal.

7) Sunglasses is always a good idea

Whether you are at Maldives or in Island, I believe sunglasses need to be always in your travel rucksack. Why? Well, when you bought a low cost flight, but it’s at 2 am, your eyes will look like the panda’s ones!

8) Happiness and enthusiasm
To travel is always an exciting experience, so be motivated, and curious as a little child. When I visit a new country I take pictures without interruption and say all the time “Wow!!! Look that!”.

Indeed, I am very excited because tomorrow I am gone for my vacations!!! Where do I go? GUESS! If you say exactly where I am going, you will be mentioned in my next post.

I beg you pardon if this Friday, next Monday and next Wednesday there will be no posts on my blog because I will be the whole day taking pictures. However, I will still post something on my Facebook page and on my Instagram story!

Monday, July 10, 2017

What it means to be Sicilian

Though I always write posts in English, I was not born in any of Anglophone country you may think. I am Italian. But I am not just Italian. I am also Sicilian. You know that island in South Italy that has a triangle shape. Yes, that’s it Sicily. I am writing this post because since it’s two weeks I came back from Venice, and honestly in these days I felt very sad (now not anymore), so I reflected a lot about what being Sicilian, to be born in this land actually means. I may sound a bit drama queen, but I truly believe that it is not the same as being born in Rome or Milan.


Being Sicilian means to be an islander. It means to take the airplane every time you want to go to the other part of Italy, because you live in the far South. It means that when you speak with someone from another region, especially from North, they can recognize you are Sicilian because you’ve got an accent. It also mean that when you go abroad and when someone asks where you from are, they reply: “Oh, I know Sicily, the mafia island”. Being Sicilian is basically wanting to go out from that fucking island because you think people have small minds, but when you’re actually out from hell, you start being nostalgic because you belong psychologically to its traditions, way to live. It means to gesture animatedly. Or it means to find inside your car a piece of paper full of bad words because you are considered the “good loser guy who respects rules”. I could make an endless list. I am honest. It is very hard for me to be Sicilian. Sometimes I think that do not belong to this island, sometimes I do not see myself in this island.

However, I must also say that it’s not all that bad. Being Sicilian means to have a very long summer, to go to the beach, have fun with friends. Being Sicilian is going every Sunday to the grandma and eating her homemade cookies. It means to capture the best moment to take a nice photo at the sunset. It also means to have secular traditions, to eat fresh food from the greengrocer. It means to breathe unpolluted air. It means to live in a land full of history, which has been a crossroads of peoples for years.

I am still working on it. It is still a very heavy weight. Nevertheless, I am learning to appreciate who I am, and especially my origins because it is important to see the world, but not less to be pride from where you come from.

I hope you liked this post, I really felt I needed to write about this before talking about other amazing places around the world. Thank you if you read till here.

See you Wednesday with a new #TravelNote and Friday with a new video on YouTube. Here there is my first one, in case you missed it!

Wednesday, July 5, 2017

Bologna and its leaning towers

During my absence in my blog, in April, I went to visit the beautiful city of Bologna with my dear friend I did not see for months. Even though I am Italian, I had never visited it before. Bologna is one of the most famous cities in Italy, also famous for its ancient universities and its towers. It is one of the Italian cities with the largest and most-well preserved historic center. Therefore, if you are in the neighborhood I recommend going to a visit.
Obviously, as mentioned before, one of the most important monuments is its towers. There are three, but the most famous is the "Torre degli Asinelli" (Tower of little donkeys), and next to it there is the "Torre Prendiparte", which is just like the Pisa Tower, a leaning tower. You can also climb to the top of the tower with only three euros. However, be careful, the stairs inside are very narrow, so if you are suffering from clustering phobia, perhaps it is better you do not enter.
Even though it is not that easy to get to the top, when you arrive, you see a heartbreaking view of the city. It feels like flying over the city and see all the cute red roofs of the houses. The tower is height 97,20 meters and inside there are 498 steps!!!

Here it is a picture that shows the very narrow (and dangerous) stairs to get to the top of the tower.

Besides its towers, in Bologna, there are also many ancient churches and one of the most famous is Basilica di San Petronio in Piazza Maggiore, the main square of the city. The church was built between 1390 and 1659 and it is said it is the largest church of world built by bricks.
If at the end of your day, you still have a little bit of time, I suggest you a ride to the “tourist train”, a very friendly train that makes you a little tour of the city while you comfortably sit down and take some pictures.

Phil hopes you like this brief article. See you next Wednesday with a new "Travel Note". Ciao! :D 

Monday, July 3, 2017






What happened to Phil?

Halløj! Phil’s back to his world! I know I have been very absent in this period, but I’ve been very very busy. So, what happened in this period? What did I do? Now I am going to tell you …
As you might know, last time I wrote here on my blog was about Venice because in September I entered to university. It was not that easy because there was an entry test, but fortunately, I did it. Now I study Japanese language and culture at Ca’ Foscari University. Initially, I was a bit nervous because I did not know what to expect, but then I get used to that “university life” and I love it! I made new friends that now become very important people to me, I now know the narrow streets of Venice and don’t get lost anymore (because I did it for the whole first two months) and now I can read and write Japanese, which for me it is a great achievement!

Now I finished my first academic year. I can’t really believe how fast time flew. Currently I am in Sicily, and I already miss to see all those tourist crowds in Venice, but I know I will come soon there. In Sicily I enjoy the summer, my family and friends, and perhaps relax a little bit. Though, I must be honest that every time I come back to my hometown I always feel a weird emotion, like saying “I don’t want to come back home”, but on the other side “Yes, I want to come back and relax”. I think sometimes summer is very sad because you interrupt what you were used to do, all your friends disappear because some of them are on vacations, or others have already made other friends and probably have forgotten about you. Just some random gloomy thoughts. 

Anyway, now that I am officially back, I will try my best to keep my blog alive and promise this time I will not abandon it for a very long time.

Every Monday I am going to a post a “Phil’s Diary” page like this one, where I express just random thoughts.
Every Wednesday I am going to post a “Travel Note” page, which is a brief article about travel tips based on my experiences.
In “日本語で” section, I am going to post some of my articles translated into Japanese, so I can practice it and hope to get in touch with some nice Japanese people.

See you next time, またね!(Matane!)