Many tourists are under the impression that Italy is expensive and therefore the prospect of living in Italy seems unrealistic. But believe me its not so !! Read on 🙂
Prices can vary considerably depending on where you live. All the tourist areas and the main cities, especially in the North of Italy are more expensive than smaller towns.
Italians are warm, welcoming people who love to relax, celebrate and socialise with family and friends. And celebration and relaxation usually take place around the table either at home or in a restaurant, where they can enjoy the traditions of the Italian cuisine.
Italians have a passion for eating but also for talking.
In Italy conversation is an art form. As you walk in the streets or stop at a café in one of the many squares, you will notice Italians of all ages engaged in intense and animated discussions on a wide variety of topics ranging from family, work, politics, gossip, food, wine and sports, especially soccer.
From the largest cities to the most rural of villages, there is one place that remains the central meeting point of Italian culture – the piazza (square). No matter how big or small a piazza may be, you can be sure there will always be a people sitting, strolling, walking, talking and interacting with one another. Piazzas are also the main focal points for festivals, gatherings, celebrations and political events.
Moving away from the box of Dominoes Pizza, get yourself into Italian Hand-tossed pizza.
Italy is full of lively pizzerias, always popular with students, tourists, professionals and locals alike. They are also great destinations for family outings since the atmosphere is relaxed and they are generally cheaper than restaurants. Consequently, pizzerias are busy all year round and especially at the weekends.
Italians are very proud of their cuisine and rightly so, for their food is renowned throughout the world. Italian cooking is still very regional with the different towns and regions having their own traditions and specialties.
You should take the time to travel and discover their origins and taste the different dishes and delicacies in the many restaurants and taverns all around Italy.
Whether it is an espresso coffee, a cappuccino or one of the many other versions of coffee in Italy, it is generally consumed standing at the bar rather than sitting down at a table.
Many of these bars also provide snacks and simple meals at lunch time and have become a cheap alternative to restaurants. If you are just popping in for a coffee or a drink, remember that it costs more if you sit down at a table. Most Italians consume at the bar. Remember that you need to go to the cash desk first and purchase the food or drink you intend to consume. You then take your receipt to the bar to collect your order.
Italy offers a great range of wines famous all over the world and many people will still enjoy a glass of wine with their meal although there is a tendency to drink wine only on special occasions rather than as an everyday drink.
You will discover a much wider variety of food compared to the dishes often offered in Italian restaurants abroad
To the real Italian, lunch is a 1 to 2 hour affair with traditionally a two to three course meal, which explains why most things halt for two hours during the day. Stores shut down, banks close, and the streets are empty.
Italy is known as the “Bel Paese” and it is a truly beautiful country that creates lasting memories for everyone who visits it. There is so much to see from the famous cities to the many beautiful villages, from the beaches and the countryside to the mountain regions and the lakes.
It is impossible to mention all there is to see in Italy since each region has so much to discover and explore, each beautiful in a very different way.
Hotels can be quite expensive in Italy especially in the towns or holiday resorts.
The local tourist board will be able to provide a list of accommodation and even make bookings for you but it might be worth your while to check out availability on the Internet and look for special deals. Any of the tourist guides on Italy will also list hotels according to category and price range.
Many young people choose to stay in hostels while travelling. There are many different websites offering hostel accommodation in Italy and Europe; you may find them useful if you are travelling around on a small budget.
Italian towns are still full of many small specialised shops although there is a growing number of supermarkets and shopping centres appearing in and outside towns.
If you are shopping for food, find out which day is market day in your town when you can have a real Italian experience of buying your fresh fruit and vegetables, meat, cheese, groceries as well as a wide range of household products at reasonable prices.
You will no doubt enjoy buying Italian food but if you sometimes crave for food from home, large supermarkets now carry a range of non Italian food and some specialised shops exist in the cities.
If you are shopping for clothes, accessories or other articles, large towns will have department stores but most Italians still prefer to shop in small speciality stores and boutiques where they receive greater attention and a more personalised service.
Thomas Mann, German novelist: “This was Venice, the flattering and suspect beauty this city, half fairy tale and half tourist trap, in whose insalubrious air the arts once rankly and voluptuously blossomed, where composers have been inspired to lulling tones of somniferous eroticism.”
“visitare l’Italia una volta nella vita” (Visit Italy, once in a lifetime)