Italy is a truly magical country. We think that everyone should visit the country at least once in their lifetime. Still not convinced? Here are ten reasons why Italy is one of the most fascinating places on earth.
Italy’s Unrivaled Lakes
Did you know Italy has over 1000 lakes? All of which are characterized by distinct features. From small Alpine lakes surrounded by breathtaking landscape to large world-renowned lakes such as Lake Trasimeno, Como and Garda, which have become synonymous with romantic holidays and family getaways.
In addition to relaxing, there are a variety of watersports and outdoor activities to engage in during your lakeside holiday.
There is something for everyone—from thrill-seekers who enjoy windsurfing or waterskiing to more laid back folks who prefer sunbathing all day at the beach next to the cool, pristine waters.
Italian Architecture Lasting Impact
If you have ever been to Rome, the expression “Rome wasn’t built in a day” takes on a whole new meaning. The architecture in the city and throughout Italy has definitely had a significant influence on today’s modern architectural styles.
For example, some of the most classic architectural elements: columns, domes, and arches came from Italian designs and are now integral parts of some of the most important buildings across the world.
To this very day, it is hard to believe that thousands of years ago, Romans were able to build incredible structures like the famous Roman Baths, the aqueducts of Rome, Temples of Agrigento, the magnificent Cathedral of Monreale in Sicily, and of course, the Roman Colosseum!
Italian Cuisines are Loved the World Over
There's no way we could compile a list of reasons why Italy is so awesome without mentioning the food! Starting off with the most important Italian culinary inventions: pizza and pasta. You can find the two in almost every city in the world. Italian cuisine has influenced food culture worldwide and is viewed as a form of art by many.
But this is only the beginning. Italian food culture is so diverse! Though each region in Italy has its own flavors and foods with ingredients of all kinds, there is one thing they all have in common— the food always tastes amazing.
It goes without saying that everyone must try real, authentic Italian food once in their life. And in case you didn’t know, the oldest cookbook in the world dates back to the Roman Empire.
Beautiful and Diverse Landscapes
Enchanting views across the cypress-topped hillsides, endless olive groves, staggering views over the deep blue Mediterranean, Italy has it all. Looking for breathtaking landscapes to visit on your next trip? Here are a few:
Scala Dei Turchi on the island of Sicily- These cliffs of sparkling white rocks rise above the sea in layer upon layer. Carved out by the erosion of wind and sea, these marl rock formation is popularly referred to as the Staircase of the Turks.
The Amalfi Coast-towering cliffs alongside arguably Europe’s most beautiful stretch of coast
The Grotta Azzurra on the island of Capri-a sea cave in which, due to the unusual refraction of sunlight entering it, the water appears an incredible blue.
We can spend the whole day and probably we still wouldn’t be able to list all the beautiful places in Italy.
Today, Italian culture is represented by a love of music, art, fashion, good food, great wine and the enjoyment of life’s finer things. And don’t forget Italy’s ancient heritage, which is intertwined with its modern-day culture.
The country’s cultural heritage boasts extraordinary stories of bravery, betrayal, conquest and tragedy. The eruption of Mount Vesuvius 79 AD that wiped out the entire town of Pompeii and the fall of the West Roman Empire are two examples of the many stories that have shaped Italy’s rich history.
Since the 16th century, Renaissance era, Italy saw great advancements in instrumental music and brought about the first printed sheet music. Did you know that the musical stave, piano and opera were all invented in Italy?
Centuries long before these inventions, music was a big part of the lives of people who lived in present-day Italy back then. For example, texts of hymns written more than 1500 years ago during the Roman Empire existed to date.
The country has also given birth to many of the world’s greatest composers, conductors and singers. This includes the likes of Ennio Morricone, Laura Pausini and Claudio Abbado. Music, whether classical or modern, is definitely an integral part of life in Italy, and the nation’s impact on the contemporary global music scene is undeniable.
Family solidarity is an extremely important value within the Italian culture. Unlike in the West, where the focus is mainly on the “the nuclear family” of just a mom, dad, and kids, Italians view encompasses the extended family.
That’s why Italians have frequent family gatherings and enjoy spending time with those in their family. Children from a young age are encouraged to remain close to the family and incorporate their future families into the larger network of relatives.
Home to A Lot of the World’s Art
Italian cities like Florence, Venice and Rome are home to many museums that boast extensive collections of Italian Gothic, Renaissance, and modern art. For example, the Vatican Museums, a tourist favorite, house Michelangelo’s Sistine Chapel and galleries of tapestries and maps dating as far back as the 15th century.
But art is not limited to museums only and can be found all over the country in churches and public buildings. Italy is truly a country famous for its art, and many of the world’s most renowned artists are Italian.
World’s Most Famous Vineyards
In our post, Old World Wine vs. New World Wine, we shared how Italy is one of the world’s major Old Wine regions. In fact, Italy is home to one of the most ancient wine-producing region, dating back to the 8th century BC.
From the rolling hills of Tuscany to the Mediterranean island of Sicily (home to the most vineyards in Italy), the countries wine regions are home to some of the most scenic vineyards in the world. Many Italian wines such as
Sassicaia, Nebbiolo di Barbaresco, and Chianti Classico have achieved global icon status and are loved by millions of wine enthusiasts across the world.
Sometimes Italians get a bad rap for their impatience with tourists. Then there’s Rome’s notoriety as the pickpocket capital of the world. But these unscrupulous characters are a few and far between.
To help in conversing with the locals on your next visit, learn a little Italian, even if it’s just a few key phrases to help you engage in conversation. Remember, a majority of Italians are honest, warm, and hospitable.