Monday, May 9, 2011

Italian Cat Sanctuary Is A Tourist's Dream

Image by a_wilson

While traveling to St. Louis on Thursday morning, I passed the time reading Hemispheres, the Continental Airlines in-flight magazine I was determined to pour through before tackling the ubiquitous, and always amusing SkyMall catalog.

There I was, furiously chewing my gum (to prevent my ears from popping) and enjoying an article called "Three Perfect Days: Rome" by Joe Koehane, when once again the universe proved to me that even when I'm doing something that has nothing to do with cats, kitties always seem to make their way into my random activities.

Among the article's suggestions of stuffing yourself with chocolate filled croissants, and taking in more obvious sights, such as the Colosseum and Trevi Fountain, part of the must-see, three day itinerary included of all things, a visit to cat sanctuary located amongst the ruins!

Photograph by Mark Read for Hemispheres Magazine

Koehane reports: "Next, you stroll to the Largo di Torre Argentina, a ruin that once contained the steps on which Julius Caesar was assassinated. Now it's a cat sanctuary. Rome is full of cats, and it's full of aggressive drivers, so the sanctuary was established to give animals a safe place to live. You stroll down a flight of stairs, past felines napping on the ruins. The volunteers introduce you to some of the residents, including a blind cat named Lucky Luciano, who wanders up, attaches himself to your leg, and has to be pried off by a volunteer. He may has well have attached himself to your wallet. You make a donation on your way out."

A website for Torre Argentina, the no-kill shelter, reveals that it is home to 250 "feline friends," who are cared for seven days a week by volunteers from different countries. The sanctuary is open every day from noon to 6 p.m., and visitors are always welcome to meet the cats, browse the gift shop, or adopt one of the cats "from a distance," to help support the colony.

Image by a_wilson

If I ever make it to Italy, a dream destination of mine, I guarantee that the sanctuary will be one of my stops! Have any of you ever visited there, or can you recommend any other cat friendly tourist destinations throughout the world? I'm thinking of putting together a list!



The Monkeys said...

That is definitely a place I'd like to visit too! I've never heard of it.

Angel, Kirby and Max said...

I would love to see that! Too bad I probably never wilL!

Marg said...

That is so great that those kitties are being taken care of. It is so great to see something like that happening. Wish that would happen on that scale here in the U.S.

Cat and DOG Chat With Caren said...

that was so interesting! I say when you are doing something totally unrelated to cats and a kitty jumps into the picture...then you KNOW you have to write about it (as you already did!)

LeCrosse said...

All the more reason to go! :)

Unknown said...

What smart kitties they have in Italy, to pick such a great place to live. How great are the Italians to let the kitties live there! It's a purrfect match.

Clooney said...

Wow, thanks for posting this. If I ever get Rome, I would go to the Sanctuary for sure.

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