'Understanding Italy' is full of information to help you find out all about Italy, the Italian people and Italian life.
Finding out about Italy will provide a lifetime of interest and entertainment. It is a journey that will examine the history of Italy, its complex politics and the whole spectrum of italian culture. It will explore the wonderful, contrasting landscapes of the Italian countryside, the unique pleasures of Italian food and Italian wine, and the extraordinary warmth and hospitality of the Italian people.
The Italian people are extremely attractive, open, warm-hearted and welcoming. They are sincere, sensitive and value style over fashion. They are extremely hard-working and very concientious, and they work hard to maintain the traditions and values that they were brought up with.
The most important thing to Italians is their family and they will meet up with their extended family as often as they can. They are very animated, energetic and talkative, often carrying on several conversations at the same time. They are also extremely tactile and very affectionate with little concept of personal space.
Italians are deeply loyal to the comune, province and region in which they live. Often to the extent of dismissing any good qualities belonging to other regions. There is a phrase for it in Italy: 'Campanilismo' (the love of one's own bell-tower). This loyalty seems to last forever, passing on through the generations, even when the family emmigrated many years before.
Finding out about the history of Italy includes many of the most significant and memorable events of European history such as: the rise and fall of the Roman Empire; the birth of Christianity; the destruction of Pompei and Herculaneum by Mount Vesuvius; the emergence of the Venetian superpower; Napoleon Bonaparte; Garibaldi's unification of Italy and the rise of Fascism under Mussolini.
Finding out about the culture of italy is very rewarding. Italian culture is extraordinarily rich and is recognised and celebrated around the world with the writings of Virgil, Plutarch and Dante, the great paintings, sculptures and architecture of the Renaissance masters, the unique genius of Leonardo da Vinci, Michelangelo and Galileo and the sublime music of Rossini, Verdi and Puccini. But Italian culture is not all in the past... Today, Italy has a vibrant, home-grown music industry and is a world leader in cinema, fashion design and engineering.
For tourists wanting to find out about Italy, Rome, with the wonderful sites of the Colosseum, the Basilica of St Peter and the Trevi fountain guarantees an unforgettable holiday. Visitors going further afield to Lake Como, Venice, Siena, Amalfi, Naples and Sicily will experience the stunning variety of scenery, and the many unique cultural sites that Italy has to offer. Italy has more UNESCO World Heritage Sites than any other country in the world! You will find plenty of information about italian tourist sites in our pages.
For people interested in moving to Italy and enjoying 'La Dolce Vita', there are many options available. Houses in many parts of Italy are very affordable and can be set in some stunning locations. If moving to a rural location it is important to learn Italian and get involved in Italian life as much as possible as few Italians will speak English outside of the larger centres. As with all other aspects of Italian life, the style of houses will vary considerably from region to region. A farmhouse in Tuscany is very different from a converted Trullo in Puglia or a Masseria in Sicily. Prospective buyers need to do their homework when choosing a property and should also take advantage of professional legal advice to navigate the complex and unfamiliar purchasing process. Having made the move, life in Italy is very rewarding and living among the Italian people is a constant pleasure.
Traditional Italian food is an important part of Italian life and includes pasta, salami, pizza and ice cream, olives, pesto and Sicilian Caponata as well as fresh fish and meat. Italian fruit and vegetables are bursting with freshness, taste and smell, and the famous wines of Italy: Chianti, Valpolicella and Barolo glow deep red in the Italian sunshine.
Italy is a land rich in culture, history and beauty. From the majestic mountains of Aosta, to the sublime beaches of Calabria, it is an unmatchable experience that once experienced, will never be forgotten. Explore our site and find out about the wonderful country of Italy!
American citizens can apply for Italian dual citizenship by descent or marriage.
The currency used in Italy is the Euro. You can transfer money to Italy through an overseas SWIFT transfer, but if you are moving large quantities of money, you should consider the rates provided to you by banks for wire transfers are normally sub-par. There are alternative methods of transferring money abroad available on moneytransfercomparison.com
Where is Italy? Italy is located in southern Europe. To the north, Italy is bordered by France, Switzerland, Austria and Slovenia. To the south, the famous, boot-shaped Italian peninsular extends out into the Mediterranean sea.