Posted by: Debra Kolkka | December 31, 2012

My favourite places in 2012

2012 has been a great travelling year. I went twice to Italy and spent about 7 months away from my Brisbane home. It has been fun going back through the photos to revisit my favourite places…come with me to see them.

I have to start with Bagni di Lucca. Buying our apartment there is the best thing we have ever done. It has opened up a whole new world. We have made new friends and feel completely at home in the village. It is so beautiful, it sometimes takes my breath away.



I love to stop over in Hong Kong to visit my friends Anup and Poorna. The view from their living room is amazing. They are high above the city and eagles fly past the window looking for prey. I think this is incredible in such a populated place.


I love Helsinki…in any weather. I have been 4 times this year, and can’t wait to get back there in January for some lovely snow. Go to Beautiful Helsinki for more on this gorgoeus city.


Rome is a place I never tire of. There is always something new to discover…day or night.



We visited Sardinia in April. It is a gorgeous rocky island not far from the Italian mainland. We stayed at La Maddelena at the north of Sardinia and visited nearby Porto Cervo, where we found the prettiest church.





We also met delightful Jennifer from “My Sardinian life


From Sardinia we went to Corsica, where Bonifacio was a wonderful surprise. I had no idea what to expect…it is a gorgeous place….even the cemetery is spectacular.



We had a week in Amsterdam and loved it…what a vibrant, exciting city.





From Amsterdam we did a day trip to Antwerp and were very impressed with the city, the chocolate and the chips.



I did a couple of day trips within Italy, to …Orvieto….


…and Pitigliano, where we had the most amazing meal. Thank you Domenico and Valeria from Osteria Il Tufo Allegro.




Saturnia was amazing with its hot spring…I am going back in winter to have it to myself.


Roberto Alborghetti’s art exhibition took us to the delightful southern Tuscan town of Piancastagnaio.




Near Bagni di Lucca there was the chestnut festival in Colognora.




There were more chestnuts with delightful Bruno.



And I have had a great time discovering the villages of Bagni di Lucca for my other blog, Bella Bagni di Lucca.







Portovenere is a favourite day trip. We had a memorable lunch there with our friends Anup and Poorna.




There were so many wonderful places visited in 2012…Lucca, Florence, Milan,

Forte dei Marmi, San Gimignano……

I look forward to more adventures in 2013.


  1. briliant photos !

    • Thank you…it has been a good year.

  2. Reblogged this on allcelebritiesworld's Blog.

  3. Lovely places, great photos, fabulois stories. Debra, wishing you a fabulous year of travels and good health

  4. Hi
    That last comment was from me. Not sure why it says annonymous. Lyn

    • Thank you Lyn, I hope we meet somewhere wonderful in 2013.

  5. Marvelous way to round out 2012 Debra — have an extra glass on me , at “our” drinking hole in Ponte.

    • I will most certainly do that Richard…Aperol spritz, Campari soda or a glass of red wine for you?

  6. Beautiful places, people and food. You’ve had a great year Debra and here’s to many more! Thank you for sharing your beautiful base in BdL with me in May. I can’t wait to see you over the border in Umbria one day!

    • I am looking forward top getting together in Perugia for an Umbrian cappuccino.

  7. Reblogged this on vienaqui and commented:
    Breathtaking views

  8. world is the place of us to relax and spend the best during the day of life….
    it was so beautiful…
    LOVE To Travel to the world.

    • I love traveling the world…I will be off again soon.

  9. What an amazing year you have had!

    • I know, I have been very lucky, and there is so much more to see.

  10. You’ve been to so many fabulous places this year. I wonder what 2013 will bring! Happy New Year

    • I have New York in my sights…I haven’t been there for a few years and I love it.

  11. No wonder you had trouble choosing! Congratulations and best wishes for 2013 🙂

    • Let’s hope we all do some fabulous travelling in 2013.

  12. Thank you so much Debra for including my exhibition at Aldobrandesca Fortress in Tuscany (Piancastagnaio). It was really an honour for me to meet you… A surprising and compelling consequence of blogging with people all around the world! Thanks again for your visit!!! I wish to meet you again, here or there. Have a wonderful 2013!

    • Helen and I had a lovely afternoon with you and look forward to meeting you again.

  13. Wow, what a busy year of travel! I love your opening shot. Here’s to 2013!

    • I am sure 2013 is going to be a great year.

  14. Happy New Year Deb, your blog gets more amazing by the year!
    All the best for the new year!

    • Happy New Year Mirella, perhaps I will see you in Italy one day soon.

  15. Such beautiful places and memories for you – Happy New Year Debra!

    • Writing a blog is a great way to keep tack of all the wonderful places we have been. I am looking forward to another year going to fascinating places.

  16. What a wonderful year and superb photos to go with it – I hope 2013 is as good a year for you 🙂

    • I think this year is going to be fun…I can’t wait to get back out there.

  17. Lovely images – what a great year. Happy New Year Debra.

    • 2012 was a good year and I am expecting wonderful things in 2013 as well.

  18. That’s quite the travel year. Having visited Helsinki and Amsterdam this year, it was fun to see those … but great views of Bagni! Happy New Year!

    • I love that first photo of Bagni di Lucca. It is such a beautiful place. The trees will be bare when I go back in a couple of weeks, but that is beautiful too.

  19. Stunning, as always!

    • Thank you, I have been to some great places in the last year.

  20. Thanks for loving Hong Kong :3
    It’s a great place to me as I grew up there…
    So lucky that you travel a lot..wish I can travel to different places too 🙂

    • Hong Kong is a wonderful city. I will be there again in a couple of weeks.

  21. You had me on your pictures of the weavers during the chestnut festival, and the whiteness in Sardinia. More power and have a fun and creative blogging year ahead. Happy New Year!

    • I hope you have a 2013 full of adventure and fun.

  22. You’ve taken us to some really beautiful places Debra-thank you! I hope 2013 brings with it more wonderful travel 🙂

  23. wow you certainly have been to some spectacular places, but like you most of all i love Italy.. you have some gorgeous shots of people in this collection too.. great work.. lovely faces.. have a fab day debra.. c

  24. I love the picture of the church in Sardinia, such a beautiful place. I love too the faces of the basket makers, the pasta, Amsterdam and the chips!

  25. Happy New Year, Debra! See you in Bagni soon, I hope. and thank you for so many wonderful stories and photos.

  26. Beautiful so beautiful places… but your photographs too. I can go everywhere if you are being my guide 🙂 Thank you, Happy New Year, love, nia

  27. Great write up! I hope 2013 is half as exciting for me this year! 😀

  28. What a great year you had Debra with so many beautiful pictures!!! I look forward to seeing your posts in 2013! 🙂

  29. You have certainly had a wonderful year, hope 2013 is a good for you. Thanks for your request to read News From Italy, it is available to follow only via blogger at the moment. Hope this will be of interest.

  30. That’s an impressive line up! May 2013 be equally as exciting!

  31. Reading some of your old posts on a cool evening here in Delhi and thinking how time flies. I have been subscribed to your blog for only 2 years but I was reading even before that. Lot of nostalgia!

    • I have been writing my blog for 8 years now. Time certainly flies. I sometimes look back to remember where I have been. It is a good record of my travels for me regardless of whether anyone follows or not.
      It is getting more difficult to get blog posts out there.

      • It is really commendable. True, its an amazing journey. By difficult you mean, difficult to keep writing?? Or to make a mark??

      • I can easily find things to write about, but it seems more difficult to attract an audience. 6 years ago I had 1,000 followers and got 500 hits a day. Now I have more than 6,000 and the hits are around 300. I have given up trying to work out why. Why do people bother to sign up if they are never going to look at posts? I think WordPress no longer does much to help and google constantly changes things. It is all smoke and mirrors.
        I now just write because I want to. If someone reads my posts, great, if not it really doesn’t bother me.

      • That is because it has become way more competitive. And it is changing every minute every day. I too have much more followers compared to 2 years back and my readership has slowed down. I don’t know why people sign up! No one wants to read, everyone wants good visuals only.

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