When it comes to choosing where you would like to go on holiday next, there are a lot of things to consider. We each have our own list of influences which could include anything from budget and weather to food and things to do, and each and every destination will satisfy different variations of these components.
So, having never set foot in a country before, how do you know if you would enjoy a trip there? Well, our ‘5 Reasons To Visit…’ series is here to help. And we’re starting with holidays to Italy…
Delicious Mediterranean cuisine is definitely one of the highlights of any trip to Italy. Each region has its own specialities – all of which fall into the category of being healthy and a treat for the taste buds. Whether it’s trying as many different types of pasta as you can or searching for the best seafood, there is so much to satisfy the hunger of even the fussiest eater. And if you thought that Margherita pizza from your local takeaway was fantastic, wait until you try the real deal in Naples.
We couldn’t talk about the food in Italy without also mentioning the wine. Italy is one of the largest producers of wine in the world and is known for its full-bodied reds and dry whites. Regions such as Tuscany, Piemonte and Sardinia have all grown to be recognised around the world. Add to this the popularity of Prosecco, overtaking Champagne in many places, and you have plenty of tipples to try during your trip.
Like many countries, Italy offers a diverse range of holiday experiences. There are numerous spots for relaxing beach breaks, adventurous city breaks and high-energy ski trips, but if you are looking for breathtaking landscapes then look no further than the lakes. Situated in the north of the country, Lakes Garda, Como and Maggiore (along with smaller ones too) offer a laid back and luxurious retreat amongst stunning surroundings.
Full of secluded towns and villages that feature great hiking opportunities or the chance to simply soak up the scenery, you can be as active as you like. Plus, the breeze off the lakes and mountains all around help to take the edge off those soaring temperatures.
If it’s a beach holiday that you’re after, maybe one of Italy’s many islands will offer the perfect backdrop for your time away. From well-known places such as Sicily and Sardinia to smaller isles like Elba, Ischia and Capri, there are so many to choose from and each has its own charm and attraction. One of the best things about these islands is that they are home to fantastic beaches, but they also offer their fair share of history too.
You can choose to stay in one of these destinations for the entirety of your holiday or decide to base yourself somewhere like Naples or Genoa and take day trips across the Tyrrhenian or Ligurian Sea via ferry.
Roman ruins, and the history they hold, are scattered all over Europe and the Middle East, but Italy certainly has the highest concentration of major sights. Eminent places such as Pompeii and Herculaneum, along with iconic attractions like the Colosseum and the Roman Forum, provide so much for fans of history and culture to discover.
Obviously, with it being the centre of the Empire, Rome is the best place to visit for these important sites. However, Naples is another great choice as it will put you just a short journey away from Pompeii, Herculaneum and Paestum.
Although there are some fantastic beaches around the coastline of Italy, there are two main coastal areas that offer much more than just a place to soak up the sun. Both Cinque Terre and the Amalfi Coast have earned attention from tourists for being home to quintessential Italian fishing towns with charm and beauty in abundance. These days, some travellers are put off by the sheer number of visitors these regions receive every year, but systems to limit the amount of people are in place to ensure these breathtaking areas are preserved.
Whether you are looking for unique walking opportunities, jaw-dropping vistas or just more of that delicious food we mentioned earlier, these coastal destinations can provide it in abundance. Travelling outside of peak season will help you avoid the larger crowds too, so don’t let that put you off.
So there you have it, five fantastic reasons to visit the beautiful country of Italy. And there’s plenty more besides these too. If you would like more information about the range of different holidays we can offer here, call us on 0800 021 3237 or visit your local branch of TravelQuest.