Travelling in Italy
Every description of Italy contains so many adjectives and superlatives that finding the actual facts is a secondary part of the description. This truly stunning country boasts more UNESCO World Heritage Sites than any other country on the planet, some of the most exported and well loved foods, art that inspires more art and a landscape that has been inspiring, artists, poets, authors, fashion designers and tourists for centuries.
So just where do you start? You cannot begin to see even a tenth of this country in just a week long holiday, however, in just seven days you can taste the many delights of this country and its culture that will wet your appetite for more next year, and the year after.
Italy has some of Europe’s, if not the world’s, greatest cities. It makes sense therefore to explore and spend time in at least one. You are spoiled for choice however. From art lover’s Florence to the romantic haven of Venice or the history buff’s delight of Rome you will find it hard to pick just one. Which one you choose will depend on what else you want to do on your holiday.
Venice and the Italian mountains
Venice is one of the world’s most well known cities. This sinking island city is one of decadence, extravagance and drama. From the grand Piazza San Marco and its accompanying basilica to the Gallerie dell’Accademia, this is a city that is bold and daring but looks to the future as well as revelling in its glorious past.
A couple of hours’ drive from Venice are the mighty Dolomite Mountains. The region is made up of towering snow-capped peaks, sprawling national parks and thick alpine forests. During the winter this is Italy’s premier skiing region and during the summer walkers take over the Germanic villages and rolling, green peaks that the Von Trapps would be proud of.
Florence and Tuscany
Florence is the cream of the crop in terms of Renaissance Italy. It is mesmerizingly beautiful and although much of the art is locked away indoors, the stuff found along the city streets is just as remarkable. Some of the world’s best artists have works in Florence and the Uffizi, Pitti and Accademia galleries house pieces from Michelangelo, Leonardo, Donatello, Giotto, Masaccio and Botticelli to name but just a few.
Hilltop villages, acres of vineyards, olive, lemon and pine groves and Cyprus trees cover the landscape. The mirror-like rivers crossed by worryingly ramshackle bridges to the Mediterranean lapped fishing villages via green and yellow fields separated by poppies, Tuscany is a sight for soar eyes and the region of Italy described with the most adjectives.