Italy is famous for it's history, architecture, culture, and food, of course! In March of 2013, I was lucky enough to travel to Italy through EF Tours (Joey will be going this July! Stay tuned!) and I immediately fell in love with the country.
We flew into Venice and from there went to Florence, Assisi, Rome, and then Pompeii. Venice is exactly what you would imagine! Turquoise-blue water, gelato shops on every corner, and bustling people everywhere. When in Venice, there are two things I believe should be mandatory: taking a gondola ride and going into a tiny, family owned restaurant and ordering something that you don’t know how to pronounce. I promise you won’t be disappointed! I also suggest bringing a detailed map with you if you plan on going, it is VERY easy to get lost and I’m speaking from experience.
Now for my all-time favorite city in Italy… Florence! Florence has the perfect balance between urban, city-life, and historical beauty. The buildings are gorgeous, the locals are welcoming, the history is abundant, and the food is to die for! While Rome is much more touristy and similar to other European cities, Florence has unique qualities that truly make it one-of-a-kind. If and when I return to Italy, Florence will be my first stop!
And although Rome wasn’t my favorite city, it still absolutely worth visiting! The Colosseum is a magnificent part of history and seeing it in person just gives you a whole new perspective and appreciation for past civilizations.
A few tips for traveling to Italy…
1. March was very cold/rainy, so try and go between the months of May-August. Those are supposed to be the best months to go.
2. Get Euros at your local bank before you go! The exchange rate is more expensive when you get there.
3. There are beggars/gypsies everywhere! Make sure you have a secure place, on your person, for your money and other important things.
4. Try at least three flavors of gelato, before you decide on your favorite (it’ll be a tough decision)