“La dolce vita” as they say in Italy – the sweet life. Italy has always been a popular destination for tourists, who flock here to experience the sweet life for themselves.
Italy’s thousands of years of history and culture are evident everywhere, with ancient Roman ruins littered around the countryside (and the major cities too, for that matter). Besides the Coliseum and other fantastic artifacts, Italy offers travelers plenty of other enjoyable places and pastimes.
If you want to go on a driving holiday in Italy, there are literally thousands of things you could choose to see and do. Let’s take a look!
Vineyards of Italy
Italy is known for food and drink. This is the place to be if you like pasta, pizza, olive oil, sun-dried tomatoes, and wine. Going for a driving tour around the many vineyards of Tuscany is enlightening, entertaining, and delicious! Driving through the hills lets you experience the countryside and small towns in a way you can’t do without a car.
One important note on a wine tasting trip is to book accommodations near the vineyards you’re visiting. Almost every winery offers tasting experiences, and once you have sampled a bit of Chianti or Pinot Grigio, you’ll probably want to polish off the bottle. Driving drunk is a very bad idea in Italy, as it is elsewhere. You can also take turns driving, but you may be jealous when your friend is raving about a wine you can’t taste. Staying near the wineries is a good plan.
Shopping in Italy
If you’re more interested in design than food and wine, a shopping trip may be for you. Some of the world’s most famous clothing designers are from Italy or have their base here. Milan is, of course, one of the fashion capitals of the world, and the Milan Fashion Week is a major event for top designers.
If you have a significant shopping muscle (and a hefty credit limit on your credit cards), cities like Rome, Milan and Florence are for you. These cities aren’t just for the big designers, however, so if Dolce & Gabbana price tags freak you out, you will be happy to know you have options. You can also shop in quaint little backstreet stores, and often find some real jewels.
Art in Italy
Another thing that Italians are famous for is art. You could go on a driving holiday through Italy and visit some of the world’s most important works of art. The Uffizzi Museum in Florence is full of Renaissance masterpieces, but the greatest museum of all is probably the Vatican.
Though it’s located in the center of Rome, Vatican City is officially a separate country. It’s the one place you can’t drive – you need to enter the Vatican on foot. Once you do, you can see the Sistine Chapel with its ceiling painted by Michelangelo – one of the most recognized works of art in the world.
In art, Italians have found a way to release their inner passion in a way that’s unrivaled by other cultures. Of course there have been great artists from France, Spain, Britain and elsewhere. But Italian art has been influential, controversial and beautiful in a way that goes beyond other places.
When you visit Italy and drive around the country, take the time to savor your trip instead of constantly rushing around. When you discover the Italian love for good food and wine, fine fashion, and beautiful art, you’ll understand the country a little better. This is why Italians love life so much. It’s what La dolce vita is all about.