Within Italy it is a small part, but will always be a large piece of my heart ❤
Welcome back wanderlusters!
After taking a few weeks off of travel blogging, I am starting back up with the small town of Reggio Emilia! Many people (including myself) have probably never heard of this place before so it might seem insignificant…boring even. Let me ya, you and I are WRONG. This place which occupies such a small part on the map has played a huge role in my love for Italy and I’m here to convince you to love it as much as I do.
Reggio Emilia was where the main part of our studies took place (yeah I was actually studying abroad — it wasn’t all fun and games! :P). Reggio Emilia is located in the Emilia-Romagna region right above Tuscany which is most famous for the major city, Bologna. We spent time in Reggio Emilia because we were studying the Italian approach to early childhood education. Reggio Emilia was ideal because it is renowned for its “Reggio Emilia Approach” for early childhood education. To be short and simple, the Reggio Emilia approach places a strong emphasis on guiding children’s interests during the pre-school age. Children are seen as capable of constructing their own learning, teachers and parents are only there to observe the child, provide resources, and ask thoughtful questions, the environment is a third teacher, and documentation of children’s development is crucial. This approach is actually pretty complex and we spent a good few days diving into the origin and methods that makes this approach successful and famous. I’ll keep it short and simple but basically this town is known as the “City of Children” 🙂
Okay! Now onto sharing my thoughts about this beautiful and quaint town! Everything here is within walking distance. This town is also (get ready fashionistas) full of shops!! From children’s clothes to the largest H&M I’ve seen, there is endless shopping all down Emilia street all walking distance from our hotel. It is such a cute and adorable city. Basically everyone goes out during the evening to eat and during the day people walk around. The town is always full of people (except for Sundays when everything is closed), and the piazzas are always full of kids playing and eating gelato. Of course, the beauty of this city cannot be put into words so here are a few pictures to describe wha tI’m talking about.
In this city, there are three churches all around the corner from each other! There is Basilica di San Prospero (Patron saint of the city; they have parades every year to celebrate) and the Duomo. I actually went to Mass in Basilica di San Prospero and it was an amazing experience being inside this beautiful church. In the piazzas of these churches, there are restaurants where people sit outside, fruit shops, and gelato shops! It is always fun to sit and people watch 🙂
Finally, if you ever go to Reggio Emilia, you HAVE to visit the BEST GELATO shop ever! We stumbled upon it on our first day of wandering the town. It is a cute little shop with abundant flavors to choose from all at a decent price! I probably went five times during our week here and I have no ragrets.
My greatest adventure in this town was trying to find a grocery store! The grocery store was actually located underneath a shopping center called OVS and was difficult to find. Luckily we saw the sign for it outside, and decided to go into OVS and found the stairs leading down to the grocery store. They had everything I needed to make sandwiches for lunch from fruits to small entrees. I felt so accomplished after finding the grocery store I thought I could practically live here!! Alas, I only had a week to make this place home but will definitely return one day 🙂
Well that is all for today! I hope I have enlightened you on the fact that small towns holds the greatest treasures here in Italy! I miss this place incredibly, and hope to find my way back. I actually wouldn’t mind living here at all because of the tranquility, ease of access to everything, and beautiful scenery. I’m so glad my study abroad program exposed me to this place and I hope one day you will have the time to stop by Reggio Emilia to experience all the feels I had!