Summer is a time for slowing down, living in the moment, and enjoying La Dolce Vita. When the weather gets hot you don’t have to travel to the Mediterranean to enjoy a fun summer vacation. Here are five summer ways to chill out like an Italian right here at home.

1. Have a Spritz

Get yourself a bottle of Aperol, a liqueur made of bitter orange and other fruits. You’ll find the perfect summer Spritz recipe right on the back label. The Spritz is practically the national summer drink of Italy.

Aperol Spritz
3 parts Prosecco
2 parts Aperol
Splash of soda water
4-5 ice cubes
Garnish with a slice of orange.

2. Lounge on a Beach

Take some time out to visit the sea. While you may not be able to fly to the Mediterranean on a whim, there are many beautiful beaches right here in the United States. Take advantage of them.

Relax and enjoy the ocean breeze. Soak up some much-needed vitamin D. Exfoliate your feet by walking in the sand. Let the sound of the waves wash over you and cleanse your spirit. Don’t forget to wear sun cream and your most fabulous pair of sunglasses.

3. Take a Passeggiata

As the sun sets and the air cools slightly, take a pre- or after-dinner stroll around your neighborhood. Leisurely burn off some calories, hold hands with your loved ones, stop and have a little chat with your neighbors. This feeling of connection is what life is all about.

4. Dine al Fresco

Take advantage of the mild weather and enjoy a meal outside. If you have a patio or a backyard, the summer is a perfect time to dine al fresco. Or you could go to a park or a barbecue, or even a restaurant with outdoor seating.

Pasta salads travel well. Or try a cool Caprese salad, which consists of tomato and fresh mozzarella cheese, drizzled with olive oil and sprinkled with fresh basil and salt. Yum.

Coffee drinks are also lovely to sip outdoors. Order your favorite caffè latte or make a cup of coffee at home. Watch the sunset. Life is good.

5. Enjoy Some Gelato

Italian gelato is lighter, creamier, and less fattening than most of the traditional ice-creams we have in the U.S. Enjoy this cold, creamy treat to cool off in the heat. Gelato comes in many flavors and a variety of beautiful colors. Mix and match two or three flavors in one sitting.

Or try an Affogato, which is vanilla gelato with a shot of espresso poured over and a crumbled cookie topping.


I hope you enjoy these five summer ways to chill out like an Italian. Let me know which ones you try.