Nestled in the Euganean Hills (formed of 80 extinct volcanoes outside Padua and just visible from Venice) is the small town of Arqua Petrarca. Established since Roman times it settled into its final look and shape in the 14th century and is today a great example of a medieval town to which noble families from Venice and Padua retreated.
Italy may be at its tourism peak in the summer, but the country is open for business year-round. No, you aren’t likely to be lying on the beach or frolicking in the Tuscan hills when it’s cold outside, but visiting Italy in the winter offers a chance to see and do some things that aren’t available in the summer months. Here are just a few suggestions for things to do in Italy in the winter.
So much time is spent extolling the virtues of Italy‘s beautiful beaches, rolling hills, and Roman ruins that it might be easy to forget it’s an incredibly mountainous country. And what do mountains mean in the winter? Skiing, of course. Italy has some of Europe‘s most popular ski resorts, as well as some excellent places to ski that are a little more off the tourist radar.
Italians will take advantage of just about any excuse to celebrate. Couple that with their insane love of fireworks, and you’ve got the makings of a great place to spend New Year’s Eve. Some areas have more interesting New Year’s Eve events than others, though, so if you’re still looking for the best places to spend New Year’s in Italy, this list may help you narrow your options.
It’s that time of the year – a frenzy of gift buying for family and friends and if you’re in Italy it just gives you more of an excuse to shop in the world’s top style destination. Not surprisingly many cities and towns turn on special Christmas markets (Mercatino di Natale) from the end of November through to early January, so here’s a few of them
For visitors to Italy who are interested in getting beyond the usual Venice-Florence-Rome itinerary without an hour-long train ride, a stop in Bologna is an excellent option. This city has everything you’re looking for – grand piazzas, historic attractions and exceptional food – without many of the trappings of a tourist city. What’s more, Bologna is on Italy’s high-speed train line, making it easy to include it on an itinerary in the northern part of the country.