Adventure Awaits: Palmero Italiano

Life with Joel & Amber

Sep 10, 2018

We’re packing our bags!

We’ve got an adventure coming up, and today we’re giving our blog readers the inside scoop on our next wanderlust destination.

In just a few hours, we’ll be on a plane to Italy! Land of gelato, ancient architecture, tuscan villages, the Dolomites, and all the carbs we can eat.

“It’s tradition.”

Every September, we block off 2 weeks to go on an adventure. No business agenda, no work travel for Joel. Not even our professional camera – just our favorite mini Canon. It shoots in RAW and fits in our pockets. Win-win all around right there! This all started with a trip to Europe a few years ago. That’s when the wanderlust bug bit us for real and September became our favorite month to travel. That Europe trip also launched our idea to blog our travels.

{You can still find our very first Wanderlust on the blog: Part 1 (Germany, France, Belgium) and Part 2 (England and Ireland). Fair warning: they’re vintage!}

After Europe came our September Wild West Adventure through Colorado, Montana, Idaho, Utah, and all the national parks that came with it. Next up was Prince Edward Island, Nova Scotia, New Brunswick, and Maine last September.

You know we have a story of how this trip came to be.

If you talked to us a few months ago, you thought we were going to the Pacific Northwest. (We did, too). We figured it was high time we visited the mecca of amazing coffee and hip shop vibes. In between all the coffee shops, we had scheduled in days for Mt Rainier, Olympic National Park, Mt St Helens, 2 more state capitals, and a drive along the Oregon Coast.

How do I know all this? I already bought the guide book months ago. I read them like novels and love every second! We literally had our trip planned out on paper, AirBnB options saved, and it was on our to-do list to start booking everything.

But then…

Then 3 things happened that made us completely change our destination and decide to plan a European trip in less than 2 months.

The first precursor to the change was our June trip to British Columbia and Alaska. It was a last minute decision of a trip (I’m starting to see a pattern here…) to head to the great white North instead of Caribbean waters. After that, it felt like the PNW was a little bit of a repeat.

And then!! We found out Baby Palmer was joining our team in January. While we couldn’t be happier, we also know our traveling will start looking a little different for a few years. We decided to make our last kid-free trip something that we would be less likely to do with a stroller in hand.

The third thing? Huntsville Traveler. I’m just a little obsessed with them, even though we can only buy but so many plane tickets at a time… We had just had a conversation about looking for a different destination when they started posting all these great European travel deals from Google Flights. Trust me, it was hard narrowing it down between places like Amsterdam, Italy, and Spain.

Italy won the vote (and we could work in the dates between weddings), and Palmero Italiano became a reality!

Joel and Amber Travel

Fast Forward

Jumping ahead 2 months: we’ve now officially booked some super cute AirBnBs, read (most of) Rick Steve’s guide book (that thing is a beast and one of the best guide books ever), and dreaming of spaghetti.

If you know us, you also know we probably added in a couple extra stops! We also scheduled in just a little time for a taste of Switzerland, Lichtenstein, and Austria.

Follow along on our Instagram stories (@joelandamber) to come along as we explore the culture, sights, and food of Italy!

If you have any Italy travel tips for us, we want to hear about them! We’ll be exploring northern Italy: Milan, Cinque Terre, Florence, Verona, the Bolzano region, and Lake Como.



  1. Amy Hendrixson says:

    So excited for you! We went to Germany, Austria and Italy 5 years ago. I absolutely love Italy. Cinque Terre was one of my most favorite places ever. When you are in Vernazza, you need to eat at the restaurant right by the shore where the boats are docked under the bright umbrellas. It is wonderful!

    • Joel and Amber says:

      We loved Cinque Terre! We visited 3 of the towns, and they were all incredible. Vernazza was my favorite one, I think. That’s another place I’d love to go back and visit again someday! There’s so much character.

  2. Amy Hendrixson says:

    Also, I am in love with Florence. Such a lovely city. A favorite restaurant there is ZaZa’s.

    • Joel and Amber says:

      Florence was amazing! We had only one day there, and that’s the city we’d love to go back to someday! There was still so much to see. Thank you for the recommendation!! We ended up in another part of the city at dinner, but I want to try it out next time we’re there! I saw the menu online and it looked really yummy. :)

  3. Betsie Zuck says:

    We were just in Verona, Mantua, Padua and Venice in February…amazing! Be sure to see the Colosseum, as it’s larger than the one in Rome! You will love it all! Safe and healthy travels to you! ❤ Betsie Zuck

    • Joel and Amber says:

      The colosseum was incredible! We had such an amazing time in Italy. We totally fell in love with Verona! It was our favorite city of the trip, although Joel would maybe tie it with Siena. :)

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