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Italy Guide

A quick guide to Italy to read before you set off

Language: Italian
Currency: Euro
Government: Parliamentary democratic republic
Population: 58.5 million
Timezone: GMT + 1

Florence architecture, FlorenceView from Rome
Italy is famous for its passion and its incredible beauty. But it is so much more than just this; it is also chaotic, colourful, noisy, full of history and rich in art.

Besides its well-known, big cities like Rome or Pisa, Italy also offers stunning landscapes – from the sunny beaches of Sicily and Sardinia to the snowy Dolomites – the whole country is full of a certain flair that you simply have to discover yourself.

Italians are generally seen as charming, stylish and uninhibited and you could say all of that is true in some way. For a lot of people in Italy, maintaining la bella figura (face) is the most important thing.

At the same time, Italians can be quite traditional; family ties for example still play an enormous role in the country’s culture. Three generations living together under one roof is quite common. Italians love football – the major teams are Juventus Turin and AC Milan. Motor Sports is also really big, the Italian Grand Prix held at Monza and the San Marino grand Prix at Imola are real mass spectacles.

Regarding food, it is not only pesto, pizza and Bolognese sauce that Italy is famous for. There is a wide range of regional specialities you might discover during your stay. Make sure you have some wine- Italy produces some great wines like Barolo or Chianti. Also, try Peroni, the national beer.

Where to go in Italy

We currently have detailed rail travel city guides for the following places in Italy

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