Home to innumerable works of art, an instantly recognizable culture, as well as the most popular cuisine in the world, Italy is a destination for the ages.
Found in the middle of the Mediterranean Sea, Italy is immediately recognizable on the map thanks to its unique shape in the form of a boot. Surrounded by seas from all sides except the north, the landscape is mostly craggy, yet flat. Its northern region it's occupied by the Alps which makes Italy a photographer's dream. With one of the best climates in Europe, the scenery in Italy is stunning and is one of the largest reasons why it has constantly remained on the list of most popular countries.
Italian food is arguably the most popular in the entire world. There is no corner of the world that doesn’t serve pizza – one of Italy’s largest gifts to the world – or a person that doesn’t know what pasta is. This peculiar cuisine came to be because of Italy’s rough past, so its inhabitant had to get creative in order to survive. This led to the creation of the pizza as a poor-man’s-meal, but in the modern age, Italian food began to be viewed as food for everyone and at any time.
To say that Rome – Italy’s capital – is the largest pillar upon which western civilization has been built would be a massive understatement. Since its founding, Rome – and later by extension Italy – has spread culture and art everywhere across the world. From the Ancient Age to the Renaissance, and later to the modern age, Italian culture and art are some of the most influential in the entire world. Italian culture is fascinating and very alluring, and Italy today stands as one of the bastions of modern culture, art, and fashion.
Rome is called the Eternal City for a reason. It’s stood in the same location for millennia and has survived many catastrophic events, and yet it still remains as one of the liveliest, and most popular, cities in the entire world. Many of the cities in Italy share the same fate to at least some extent – cities like Venice, Milano, Florence, Naples, and many more have seen their own share of ups and downs but have yet to show signs of slowing down. They remain some of the most popular and well-known cities in the world, and deservedly so.
Italy is a destination for everyone. It offers just about everything and in the right doses, so nobody should skip on a visit if they have the chance to see it up close and personally.
Know Before You Go
Many cities in Italy have clean drinking water spritzing freshly from fountains in the street. Fill up your water bottle on the go or freshen up your tastebuds after trying all that gelato.
Dinner in Italy is always relaxed and often turns into quite the social affair. In the summer, it's common practice to 'take a spritz' every afternoon. Usually made with Aperol, it's a refreshing drink on a summer day. Salut your neighbours with a cocktail, or two, or three.
In Italy, travelling between cities couldn't be prettier, and it's the perfect opportunity to take the train. Most of Italy's landscape is flat, and you can enjoy impressive views of the countryside and surrounding mountains. Italy's main cities can be easily reached by the high-speed railway. Remember to stamp your ticket when you board trains and buses. Forget and you may get a fine.
Italy is not just enchanting cities and quaint seaside towns. The far North presents the alluring peaks of the Italian Alps. Italy has exceptional ski results that rival the best in the world. Ski season is virtually a guarantee from December to late April. Even in summer, the colourful mountain towns are worth a visit if you have the time. Those formidable glaciers are worth the wait.
Best Time To Visit
The North and South of Italy are so different they could be confused for different countries. Head for Northern charm and you're met with charming architecture, and fascinating history. The South has more rugged coastlines and towns that evoke the Meditteranean dream.
The best seasons to enjoy Italy are spring (April to June) and fall (September to October). The weather is delightfully cooler, fewer tourists, and everything becomes cheaper. Avoiding summer also means escaping the hoards of mosquitos.
What To Expect
Panning your trip to Italy? Here are a few tips to help you start.
Currency - The official currency in Italy is the Euro
Language - The official language is Italian.
ATMs - ATM's are abundant across Italy and are named Bancomat. The withdrawal limit is 250 Euros. it's a good idea to bring two cards in case of emergency.
Plugs & Sockets - Italy uses three plugs. Typical Europlug, or Type C with two pins. Type F with two pins and two earth clips. Also Type L with three round pins. Italy uses a 230V supply voltage and 50Hz.
Safety - As with most popular countries in Europe, Italy is safe to travel and sees few instances of crime.
Climate - Italy has a range of climates due to its iconic shape. The inland North sees a subtropical climate with hot and humid summers. Most of the mainland and coastal areas enjoy a Mediterranean climate.
At the height of summer, temperatures can soar above 30 degrees celsius across the country. Winter can see drastic contrasts across the country. The East coast is wetter and suffers cold winds. Snow could turn Milan into a winter wonderland whilst Rome enjoys a pleasing 20 degrees.