I have never met anyone who said that they’ve never wanted to visit Italy. With so many places to go and so many things to do, Italy is one of the most interesting places in the world to visit. Whatever you want to do, Italy has it.
As someone who is studying abroad in Florence, I can tell you that there are so many things to do that people wouldn’t have even thought about.
I have developed such an appreciation for this country. It was love at first sight, like it is for many people who travel here. Here are the top three reasons you should visit Italy.
1. The food
I cannot even begin to tell you how fresh the food is in Italy. Hardly anything in Italy is processed besides the food they have for Americans.
With laws banning most of the preservatives we put in our food, even the junk food isn’t as terrible for your health.
Yes, you will mostly eat pasta and pizza every day. Why are Italians not all overweight, then? Everything is made by hand.
Another huge aspect of the food here is that the proportions aren’t huge. You have to order a pizza for one person, which seems like it would be overwhelming, but it’s not.
The pizza is so fresh that it fills you up without making you feel stuffed. A pizza is the perfect size for one person, giving you an excuse to eat an entire pizza by yourself.
It’s not uncommon for people here to spend two or three hours eating dinner, either. It’s actually really fun to do. The waiters will never rush you, and you always have to ask for your bill. What could be better?
Have a taste of gelato here and you will realize that it’s what you’ve been missing your entire life. Like everything else, the gelato is fresh. One thing though, do NOT buy gelato in mounds. You’ll know what I mean when you see it.
The gelato in mounds means that it’s a tourist trap and the gelato won’t be as fresh or good. The best gelato shops are the little places that are almost hidden. You can eat gelato at 8 am and no one would bat an eye.
The biggest thing to take away is that the best places to eat in Italy are places where you see actual Italians eating, not tourists. Remember, you don’t tip in Italy!
2. The sights
Studying in Florence, I have a bias when it comes to the best cities to visit. What I can tell you is that I have not seen an ugly place in Italy.
In Florence, you have everything from the David statue (and his copy) to the Ponte Vecchio, medieval palaces, the Duomo and Piazza Michelangelo to keep you from getting bored. The history in the city is amazing.
Another place you have to visit is the Amalfi Coast. It’s basically Italy’s paradise with beaches you only dream about. Any beach you go to is amazing, but these are spectacular.
If you haven’t heard of Cinque Terre, then you need to look it up. It is possibly the most beautiful place I’ve ever seen in my life. There are five towns build on the side of the coast on a mountain.
Rome and Venice are places you need to visit while you’re here, but I wouldn’t spend all of my time there. Rome is incredible for the tourist attractions like the Coliseum and the Roman Forum, but you can get through everything in about two days while Venice you can really do as a day trip.
The city is beautiful, there is no doubt about that. Look around the city, go to Rainbow Island to see some glass-blowing, get on a gondola and then you’re good.
3. The wine
Go. To. Tuscany. Italy is known for its wine. If you aren’t a wine-drinker, like I wasn’t, Italy will change you.
Going on wine tours will let you experience the most beautiful parts of the countryside that you wouldn’t otherwise see, as well as taste some of the most amazing wine you’ll ever have in your life.
Wine is a such a big part of the culture here that it is not uncommon to find people drinking it in the middle of the day and with almost every meal. They are proud of their wine, and they are proud of it for a reason. They know what they’re doing.
In Italy, it isn’t a thing to get drunk. In many cities, it is actually illegal to be drunk. People here drink just for the sake of tasting the wine or other drinks.
Italians do something before dinner called aperitivo. It’s where they meet up with their friends, or even a date, to have a drink before they go out to eat.
The typical drink at an aperitivo is called a Spritz, which originated in Venice. I still could not tell you what’s in it, but it’s amazing.
Usually, the aperitivo eventually becomes the dinner because of all the food that is available. Being a part of an aperitivo was one of my favorite things in Italy. It may sound odd, but it’s so much fun.
There is nothing in the world that could compare to life in Italy. The culture is so laidback and different. They want you to spend your time slowly and enjoy every moment.
In the beginning, it’s hard to get used to, but it becomes much easier. Italy teaches you how to enjoy the world around you and how to be more in the moment. It’s truly an incredible place to be!
If you liked this article, then please like and share it! If you have any thoughts about Italy that you would like to share, then please leave a comment below!