Italian Travel and Holidays

If you have never had the pleasure of taking a romantic gondola ride around Venice, now might be the time. Italy has always been one of the more affordable destinations in Europe despite its incredible charm, ancient landmarks, and vibrant culture. I have often heard it said—and agree—that Italy is one of those countries that people want to visit time and time again. Each city has a distinctly different flavor, so visiting Venice is an entirely different experience, for example, than touring Rome. Everything looks and feels unique from city to city –the architecture, natural surroundings, cuisine, music, and people. While Italy is known for its leisurely pace and a culture where enjoying a fine meal, strolling to the market, and chatting along the way, are not hurried—some cities like Rome are more prone to hustle and bustle of tourism and business than, say, the region of Tuscany, home to cultural centers like Florence, home of the Italian Renaissance.

Tourists visiting to Italy should keep the pace of life in mind—especially if you are planning to go during an Italian holiday. Italians love holidays, and nothing is more important than relaxing, celebrating, and being with family and friends. Tourists quickly learn that this means organizations cease to operate—this includes banks, galleries, and shops! Here is a list of Italian holidays visitors should note:

  • January 1–Capodanno (New Year’s Day)
  • January 5 and 6–Befana (Epiphany)
  • Lune di Pasqua—date changes yearly–(Easter Monday)
  • April 25–Fiesta della Liberazione (Liberation Day)
  • May 1–Fiesta del Lavoro (Labor Day)
  • August 15–Ferragosto (Assumption Day)
  • November 1 and 2–Ognissanti (All Saints’ Day)
  • December 8–L’Immacolata Concezione (Immaculate Conception)
  • December 25–Natale (Christmas Day)
  • December 26–Santo Stefano (St. Stephen’s Day)

Also note that when a holiday falls on a Thursday or Tuesday, it often carries over to Monday or Friday! If you have local friends to spend time with, these days are some of the best for visiting Italy. If not, just remember that you may not be able to enter some of the landmarks on your list of must-sees (though many monuments are amazing to view from the outside alone). One more recommendation for visitors to Italy is to consider renting an Italian villa versus staying in a hotel. This will keep you in a real neighborhood where you can really get a taste of the local culture in each city you visit.

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