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MC Travel Special | Chasing Italian sunsets with singer Akriti Kakar

The world's second-best pizza at Castelfalfi, Venchi Gelatos and souvenir shopping across the Italian countryside.

August 28, 2022 / 03:00 PM IST
Akriti Kakar (centre) with her sisters in Italy. (Image source: Instagram/@akritikakar)

Akriti Kakar (centre) with her sisters in Italy. (Image source: Instagram/@akritikakar)


Bollywood singer Akrit Kakar just came back home after a work-vacay in Tuscany, Italy. While the singer, also a foodie, had some of the best Italian food at a Michelin star restaurant there, she also fell in love with the gelatos, despite not having a sweet tooth!

Akriti celebrated her birthday in Italy earlier this month, and told us about how she saw the best sunset of her life in Venice. Here's our quick Q&A with Akriti on her holiday:

Why Tuscany?

Because I had a gig there, and what better opportunity to explore the gorgeous countryside of Italy. It’s absolutely surreal and peaceful. Also it was my birthday so it made perfect sense to make a holiday out of it. It’s literally a birthday tradition to be on a vacation with family. This time it was my husband and my sisters.

What’s the first thing you pack?

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Always my sneakers, as I love to walk around. And then clothes, according to the weather. Packing clothes takes the most amount of time!

Are you a light or heavy packer?

I’m a light and logical packer. Especially since I know I shall be shopping there as well.

What will you be reading on the trip?

I rarely read. I listen to music and watch content more, if I do have the time.

What's on your travel playlist?

For this trip, I listened to a lot of Andrea Bocelli’s music. Kept me in the Tuscan vibe! Also Coke Studio 14 - all songs have been on my mind.

What do you like to eat on holiday?

I stick to eating local food. I am usually off gluten and dairy, but I went for it big time this time around. When in Rome, do as the Romans do. So it was all pastas, pizzas, all kinds of cheese, cold cuts, fresh fruits, balsamic dressings, ravioli, risottos and tiramisu! No Indian food outside of India is a rule I always follow.

Any must-visit restaurants on your list?

We tried a Michelin star restaurant at Castelfalfi named La Rocca. It was fabulous. The location and views were a million bucks. The world’s second best pizza is at Rosmarino in Castelfalfi.

Even better was this little hidden gem named La Giostra in Florence city that my brother Saurabh recommended! Unreal food and such a cute cozy vibe in there. They have a Burrata boat that drove us all crazy! Really hard to get a table, so advance reservation is highly recommended.

What else?

I don’t drink alcohol so it was fresh fruit mocktails for me. Though what I did like was a drink named Hugo this time. I experimented thanks to some friends we made in Florence at a cute Bistro.

Desserts?

I don't have much of a sweet tooth, but I think the gelatos at Venchi, Grome and even the local stores were to die for in Italy.

Adventure holiday or laid-back sunsets - what do you prefer?

I’m a sucker for laid-back sunsets. Any day. In fact, I think I saw the best sunset of my life in Venice at the end of our holiday! The sky and the buildings looked illuminated like 24 carat gold.

How do you pay when you travel?

Cash, local currency, for local shops. Card for branded shopping.

 

Do you use any travel apps?

We used the services of a travel agent “Traveller’s Club” for our trip but also used Booking.com to make some hotel reservations.

Have you ever gotten lost while travelling?

Thankfully never! Sounds like a nightmare.

One thing that's common to all your travels?

A lot of walking, a lot of no agenda, free-flowing days, no Indian food, exploring the lesser explored places and less use of phone and social media.

Do you keep a journal while travelling?

Nope. But I do make notes on my phone. Random music ideas keep popping while I’m travelling.

You said you shop when you travel - what’s the strangest souvenir you’ve ever picked up?

I most certainly pick magnets from each city I visit. And some local souvenirs of that place. This time from Venice we met a legendary mask maker named Sergio Boldrin and picked up two beautiful handcrafted masks for our home. They’re huge and are symbolic for us personally. Carrying them back was a task but totally worth it. Also expensive but then art is priceless.

Lastly, your experience of meeting Sadhguru there…

I was so fortunate to be in the same place as Sadhguru himself. His aura is something else. I was stammering out of nervousness even speaking to him. But his zen and calm is infectious. He was too kind to invite me to the MahaShivratri celebrations at his Ashram in Coimbatore. I’m so overwhelmed and humbled and I can’t wait for it to happen.
Debarati S. Sen is a Mumbai-based independent journalist and consultant content creator. Instagram: @DebaratiSSen
first published: Aug 28, 2022 02:58 pm
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