Warning: Trying to access array offset on value of type null in /home/acpaqzsg/public_html/rw_common/plugins/stacks/armadillo/core/displayContent.php on line 598

Warning: Trying to access array offset on value of type null in /home/acpaqzsg/public_html/rw_common/plugins/stacks/armadillo/core/displayContent.php on line 598

Travel Thought for the Week

“Streets flooded. Please advise.”
– Robert Benchley (1899 - 1945), American humorist, from a telegram sent to a friend upon arriving in Venice the first time

Memorable moments come like a thief in the night

“The true delight of travel, the one that is going to print itself unaccountably and indelibly on you, seems to prefer to come as a thief in the night, and not at the hours you specifically fix for its entertainment.”
– C.E. Montague, The Right Place

Secret Michelangelo room to open in Florence

The church of San Lorenzo in Florence was the 'home church' of the powerful Medici family. Located just across the square from their palace, the family lavished huge amounts of money on the church (though it's hard to tell from the plain stone and brick exterior), creating the Medici Chapel, an elaborately decorated space covered in marbles and semi-precious stones. Off to one side of the chapel is the New Sacristy, final resting place of some of the family's most illustrious members.

A favorite of Lorenzo de Medici, Michelangelo spent a good part of his youth living in the Medici family palace, and created four statues for the New Sacristy known as Night, Day, Dawn, and Dusk. The Medici Chapel and New Sacristy opened to the public as a museum more than 100 years ago, but it wasn't until the 1970's that the director of the museum discovered a trap door that had been covered by a large cabinet. Beneath the trap door was a bare, small room. The walls were covered with charcoal drawings, almost certainly made by Michelangelo.

The room has remained off limits to the public since then, but finally plans are afoot to allow limited access to the site. Don't hold your breath – the planned opening isn't until 2020 – but something to look forward to for fans of Michelangelo's work.

Travel Thought for the Week

“You know more of a road by having traveled it than by all the conjectures and descriptions in the world.”

– William Hazlitt (1778 - 1830), English writer

View the St. Gallen manuscripts on-line

The Abbey Library of St. Gallen contains more than 2000 manuscripts, making it one of the oldest and most significant manuscript libraries in the world. Half of the manuscripts were produced in the Middle Ages – around 400 of them before the year 1000.

Thanks to the Codices Electronici Sangallenses (Digital Library of St. Gallen) scholars around the world (and you) can view more than 600 of these beautiful manuscripts via high-resolution digital images.

It's no coincidence that many of the early scientific theories and discoveries were made by monks and priests. Before the invention of the printing press, books had to be copied by hand – a painstakingly laborious and expensive process. The vast majority of this work took place at monasteries. Their libraries became the repositories for knowledge, and monks and priests – often the only literate people – had relatively easy access to that knowledge. Europe's earliest universities were founded by, and often connected to monasteries, a natural outgrowth of the church as the center of knowledge.

Show more posts

Compare Rental Cars

Find great deals on hotels


Eurailpasses and Train Tickets

A Single Stop for European Rail Travel

Hand Crafted Travel's Blog Archives

With over 40 years of travel experience, we are experts in many areas

Hand Crafted Travel respects your privacy. Learn more about our Privacy Policy.


Some offers that appear on this website are from companies from which Hand Crafted Travel® LLC may receive compensation. This compensation may impact how and where products appear on this site (including, for example, the order in which they appear). Please view the Privacy Policy for more information.

Opinions expressed here are the author’s alone, not those of any advertiser or affiliated company. Any product claims, statistics, quotes or other representations should be verified with the manufacturer or service provider.

All content © 1992 – 2022 Hand Crafted Travel LLC

We love cookies. Most cookies are delicious, but those aren't the kind of cookies we're talking about. We use little files called "cookies" to make our website awesome for you. By using our website you consent to our Terms of Use and our Privacy Policy.