Italy is definitely one of the most popular tourist destinations in the world. With its excellent climate, wonderful landscapes, warm and passionate people, magnificent cooking and unsurpassable culture, there can be few better places to live or have a holiday home. As modern travel and communications make life in Italy ever more desirable and attainable, non-Italian speakers are increasingly looking for assistance to help them realise their dream of living La Dolce Vita in Italy.
According to UNESCO, Italy is home to 40% of the art in the world! This is the birthplace of the Renaissance, the home of Leonardo da Vinci, Michelangelo, Raphael, Botticelli, Titian, Donatello, Giotto—the list goes on and on...and that's just the Renaissance! Then there are the Byzantine mosaics in Ravenna and glittering mosaics in St. Mark’s Basilica in Venice, the baroque churches of Lecce in Apulia, the Bernini statues in Rome… There is the lure of the Caesars, the ruins of ancient Rome: the Colosseum, the Forum, the ancient Roman ghost cities of Pompeii, Herculaneum and Ostia Antica. And who would have guessed that some of the best-preserved Greek temples in the world are actually in Sicily, which was once part of the Ancient Greek Empire?
Italy is a place where you can enjoy some of the world’s most fabulous food, wines and pastries at every stop along the way from north to south. Must tries are dough and tomato sauce pizza in Naples, especially Piazza Magherita, or risotto alla Milanese in Milan, dining in a fine Tuscan osteria, or a porchetta sandwich at an Umbrian market. Bologna is home to many of the world’s favorite pasta dishes and also the famous tortellini, tagliatelle al ragu. Parma is famous for Parma ham and tangy parmesan cheese. You can also taste the wine in wine bars and restaurants throughout Italy. Last but not the least: do not miss an opportunity to drink coffee like Italians do, standing at the counter or sitting at an outdoor table of a corner bar.
Let’s be honest: although Italy boasts numerous museums, castles, churches and natural beauties, one thing is for sure, Italy is one of the best shopping destinations in the world. Iconic designer names like Fendi, Armani, Prada and Dolce&Gabbana and many more originate from this stylish country. There are fine craftsmen everywhere, and the opportunities to pick up luxurious goods are literally around every corner. Get your wallet ready!
Italy is a perfect destination for sports enthusiasts in all seasons of the year. Pleasant weather and beautiful scenery is ideal for hiking and cycling in warmer months, while numerous mountainous areas invite you to ski at some of the best skiing destinations in the world. The fabulous coastline is perfect for sailing and the crystal-clear sea invites you to try snorkeling or diving. Apart from this, Italy is a popular equestrian destination, and there are only a few areas in the world with more spectacular golf courses than in Italy.
Venezia – La Serenissima, Queen of the Adriatic, city of canals and palaces...or a tawdry sewer alive with crowds and charlatans? Venice’s nature is dual: water and land, a long history and doubtful future, airy delicacy and dim melancholy. If this precious place does sink, the world will lose a lot. For a thousand years the city was one of the most enduring mercantile sea powers on the face of the earth. Today, the brilliance and influence have long since faded, leaving a town of tarnished glories, out of time and out of place, so achingly beautiful that it’s hard not to look for the back of the set.
Quanto sei bella Roma! Italy’s capital has been an important city – not just for Italy but worldwide – for millennia. Once the epicentre of the vast Roman Empire, Rome still contains some of that era’s most important structures as well the historic buildings of the empires that followed. Many have succumbed to Rome’s irresistible charms and remains, unable to pull themselves away. Busy everyday life continues at a frenetic pace, encircled by an unrivalled concentration of monuments, history and legend. Filled with medieval, Renaissance and baroque buildings, Rome is a showcase of the two great titans of the western world: the Roman Empire and the Catholic Church.
Tuscany is a perfect mixture of gorgeous scenery, charming medieval hilltop towns and villages with numerous artistic masterpieces and superb food and wine. The region’s main art towns are Florence, Pisa, Arezzo, and Siena, while the smaller medieval villages dotted around the area, such as San Gimignano, Pienza and Volterra, do not lag behind in terms of architectural and art treasures. Tuscany is not just hills and art towns; its coastline is enchanting as well, especially the southern part: the Uccellina National Park, Alberese, Talamone, Monte Argentario, the Laguna di Orbetello, and Castiglion della Pescaia are just some of its gems by the sea. Not to mention Tuscany’s exceptional islands, like Elba, Giglio, and Pianosa. Tuscany is simply wonderful.
Mount Vesuvius, located on the west coast of Italy, is the only active volcano in mainland Europe. A hike to the top reveals breathtaking panoramic views of the Bay of Naples. The volcano is best known because it wiped out the city of Pompeii in A.D. 79. The ghostly ruins of ancient Pompeii make for one of Europe's most compelling archaeological sites. Much of its value lies in the fact that the town wasn't simply blown away by Vesuvius in AD 79, but buried under a layer of lapilli (burning fragments of pumice stone). The result is a remarkably well-preserved slice of ancient life, where visitors can walk down Roman streets and explore millennia-old houses, temples, shops, cafes, amphitheatres, and even a house of pleasure.
Venice and Dubrovnik are among the most beautiful cities in the world, sometimes called »the pearls« of the Adriatic. Did you know that the coastal road between them is one of the most beautiful roads to ride in Europe?
“In 2011 I joined a party of 12 and rode this amazing tour throughout Tuscany, Sardinia and Corsica. Organization, diversity of scenery, incredible food and Europe's best roads are combined to make this the best 16 days I have ever experienced.” - D. Blizzard. Australia
Switzerland is the essance of Europe with german, french and italian part, yet not a member of the Union nevertheless. Nestled in the heart of the Alps and spanned between the tradition and the modernity.
A tourism super-power, Spain has everything: from sunny beaches to beautiful cities, culture, museums and arts, festivals, food and wine, football and more. And not to forget the paella, flamenco, spanish language and siesta, of course.