An Overview of Italy
My view of Italy
I’ve been to Italy a total of three times, in 2009, 2011 and 2014. I hope to write to you about some little experiences I had there, and about its little towns and villages, and to give you some advice on what to see, where and what to eat. But, for this first Hub I decided to give you an overview of Italy:
You fall in love with it. Day by day you learn to love it a little bit more.
The first time you see it you like the landscapes, the buildings and how the Italian language sounds. You feel it is a good place to spend the holidays... but, as time goes by, you find yourself completely in love with it.
Italians are nice, typical, and they know how to welcome people to their country. And when you are that welcomed, you start to feel that you belong, and that’s a great feeling. As time goes by you wish you could stay there forever. That’s one of the many “magic aspects” of Italy and the Italians.
If you come from Portugal or France, you should have no problems driving there, because you will already be used to that kind of driving. But Italians may come as a little aggressive if you are not used to it, but you will not have much problems getting use to it. Anyway, and please take this warning seriously: Avoid driving in the Naples area, NEVER DRIVE IN THE NAPLES AREA – That’s the only area I had problems—THERE ARE NO RULES IN NAPLES, seriously. Besides Naples they are pretty much average in driving matters (can't tell about the south (south of Amafi Coast), never went there...).
The great Italian food!
It’s great! A bit expensive for me (I’m Portuguese). If you come from Spain you will also find it expensive. It's cheaper than in France or the UK (I'm only comparing to countries I visited recently). An average meal, in a restaurant or "trattoria" will be 12 to 15 euros per person (2014 prices). They have great wine, but I guess anyone knows that, delicious cold meats (oh! the prosciutto!) and cheese and great espresso, and the best ice scream shops in the world, but don't buy ice cream in places that don't have the words "gelato artigianale" on the door (“gelato artigianale” means it’s hand made ice cream – sometimes you can see them making it).
Cleaning, care and general cost
Cleaning and Care
Italy is, normally, clean. They have a great pride in their heritage, so they try to keep it with a good presentation.
If you buy things in a supermarket, they are quite affordable. I already told that restaurants are a bit expensive. But there are a lot of other affordable ways to eat, like hot-dog kiosks, traditional food counters, and the normal fast food. Gas (gasoline) this summer was extremely expensive. It was more expensive than in France. It was 1,8 euros per litre (probably the same price as the UK).
Attractiveness and Interest
It’s absolutely wonderful. The most beautiful country I've ever seen. When driving or walking you can expect to be pleasantly surprised by what you find. And after a while you find yourself having higher standards to what you consider beautiful. No matter where you go, you will always find something interesting.
And that’s all for now. I hope to write a lot more about Italy (and other countries) in future Hubs. And I sure hope you enjoyed reading this one.