Italy by Europe Express | TravelResearchOnline

Italy by Europe Express

This week’s 60-Second Geography article is all about the home of la dolce vita. So when the moon hits your eye like a big…well, you know. Remember, you can use 60-Second Geography articles in your own agency newsletters and on your websites.

60-Second Geography

Italy

It has been said that you cannot be all things to all people. Perhaps that is not true about Italy. To some Italy means sunshine, music, food and romance. To others it is history, art, culture or religion. Italy has inspired generations of writers, painters and musicians. At one time, Italy was the focal point of the “Grand Tour” – the rite of passage for young, wealthy Europeans and Americans to experience the culture of Europe. Today, Italy is one of the top 5 destinations for North Americans. Whether it is a seaside holiday, summer lakes and mountains in the Alps, winter-skiing, fashion shopping or religious pilgrimages, Italy remains the wellspring for la dolce vita.
  • Separated from Northern Europe by the Alps and surrounded by the waters of the Mediterranean, the fertile land of Italy is one of the finest and most important agricultural settings in the world.
  • The Italian lifestyle is a huge attraction for visitors, contrasted with the more reserved attitudes of Northern Europe.
  • Italy became a unified country only in the 19th century and still today great regional differences in cuisine, dialects and culture are evident.
  • Italy has an excellent rail and road system and is easily accessible from the rest of Europe. The rail fares are some of the lowest in Europe and a terrific way to travel the country.
  • Italian ports have become important to the cruise industry and represent major ports of call on Mediterranean itineraries.
  • There are more than 4 million hotel beds in the country of all types. Many Italian hotels are small, family run operations. Italian villas, some costing many thousands of dollars a night, are in high demand.
  • It is easiest to think of the country as broken into three regions: the North which includes the Alps and the North Italian Plain, Central Italy encompassing Tuscany, Rome and Umbria and Southern Italy.
  • To the north, the Italian Alps are a favorite destination for world-class skiers from Europe and elsewhere. Large lakes dot the area and provide a summer resort setting.
  • Venice is one of the most unique cities in the world. Build on a lagoon, there is no vehicular traffic in the city. The canal system is not for tourists only – it is an important transportation option. At times, the city floods as merchants and hotels calmly pick up furniture and rugs, moving them to a higher floor until the ground level water recedes hours later.
  • Some of the finest art collections in the world are housed in Italy and the architecture of its major monuments are immediately recognizable and iconic, from the Roman Coliseum to the Leaning Tower of Pisa.
  • Rome, the “Eternal City”, has been a center of Western civilization for more than 3000 years. Enveloped in the city is a country – Vatican City – home of the Roman Catholic Church and St Peter’s Square.
© Copyright 2009 Travmarket. LLC.

 

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