What Is Italy Famous For

There is a reason why the aristocrats visited Italy for tourist reasons during the Grand Tour in the 17th Century. Italy has the largest number of world heritage sites, making it one of the most visited countries by tourists. But what is Italy famous for? Keep reading to learn more including our recommendations for what to eat and drink when traveling to Italy.

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Why Travel To Italy

Italy is a popular tourist destination because of its culture, history, art, fashion, and cuisine. In addition, Italy is famous for its mountains, ancient monuments, and beautiful beaches and coastlines. Italy is one of those destinations where a single visit is not enough.

Italy is famous for its history, which dates back millennia. Among the famous things in Italy are ancient historical sites and the traces of the Papal kingdom, the mighty ancient empire.  

Italy has a rich legacy of architecture and art, which have seduced a lot of tourists. Italy’s famous buildings and architecture stretch back to before Roman times. Venice, Bolzano, and Rome are among the top famous places in Italy.

Planning a trip to Italy? Get our ultimate Italy travel checklist.

How To Book Hotels In Italy

In the 20+ years of traveling to Italy, we’ve learned a thing or two about booking a hotel in Italy. We’ve stayed at some stunning hotels like the Westin Excelsior Rome and St. Regis in Florence. And we’ve stayed at some not-so-great hotels mainly around train stations in Italy. Do yourself a favor and avoid hotels near train stations at all costs.

When planning a trip to Italy, we use Booking.com for our accommodations. In addition to booking hotels, we’ve used them for booking apartments for longer stays or booking villas in Italy when we want something special. We’ve even found some charming and less expensive guest houses in Italy on Booking.com.

What Is Italy Known For – 5 Famous Italian Foods & Drinks

What Is Italy Famous For?
What Is Italy Famous For?

Italy is famous for its cuisine, which is a favorite for many people around the world. Italy’s foods and dishes have developed through the centuries. Italy’s famous dishes include pasta and pizza, which are associated with traditional Italian foods.  

The smooth taste of cold gelato, hot pizza with melting cheese, and tiramisu with a velvety texture will make you fall in love with Italy. Authentic Italian foods will be a paradise for your mouth.

Every region of Italy offers unique ingredients, flavors, and recipes. Italy also has a variety of drinks to offer. Italian coffee with bold and rich flavors is perfect after dinner. Alternatively, you can perfectly pair your meal with Italian wine. So what is Italy famous for in terms of foods and drinks?

It’s no surprise that our advice on traveling to Italy starts with food!

Authentic Italian Pizza

Italy is famous for pizza

Pizza is a famous food from Italy. The southwestern Campania region, which is the home to Naples city, is the modern birthplace of pizza. Pizza is, therefore, among the famous things about Italy.

You will definitely find the best pizza in Naples, Italy. Pizza could be one of the answers to the question, what is Italy famous for. There is a belief that Italy, specifically Naples, makes the best pizza.

However, this is not to say that you can only find delicious pizza in Naples. You can definitely find pizza in other regions of Italy. But what makes Italian pizza so unique?

Authentic Italian pizza has a sprinkle of flavorful and fresh Fior di Latte, which means milk’s flavor. Alternatively, authentic Italian pizza could contain buffalo cheese. Buffalo cheese or Fior di Latte gives the pizza a distinctive texture that contrasts against the crispy crust, genuinely delighting the taste buds.

Fresh Hand-Made Pasta

Italy is known for pasta

Fresh hand-made pasta is among the most popular and best dishes in Italy. Fresh pasta is a symbol of Italianism and a spokesman for Italian values. You will also have a wide variety of pasta dishes to choose from.

Like all Italian cuisine, pasta is also a regional cuisine. Pasta from the North will differ from pasta from the South. Fresh pasta made from durum wheat flour is more widespread in the South. The North prefers fresh pasta made from soft wheat flour.

Bologna, the capital of Emilia-Romagna in northern Italy, is the home to lasagna. The lasagna in Bologna will most definitely differ from the lasagna you know. There are a lot of unique pasta dishes from the northern region of Italy.

Likewise, pasta dishes from Southern Italy differ from the northern. For example, the ingredients in a Napoletana lasagna are different from those in a lasagna Bolognese. The wide variety of Italian pasta and pasta sauces makes Italy a great travel and food destination.

Italian Coffee

Drinking coffee in Italy

Italians have deeply protected the country’s reputation as the world’s coffee capital. A lot of people also try to replicate Italian espresso. But what is Italy known for in terms of coffee?

Italians have developed their own coffee culture, starting with drinking coffee at a coffee bar or cafeteria. Visiting an Italian coffee bar is different from visiting the local Starbucks. Rather than queuing at the register, you just walk into a coffee bar in Italy and find a space. The server will then get to you.

In Italy, coffee rituals define a day. Italians drink specific coffee at specific times. Italians, for example, drink cappuccino in the morning, Caffe macchiato in the afternoon, and espresso after dinner. However, when ordering an espresso in Italy, call it caffe instead of espresso.

Furthermore, Italian coffee comes with mysterious laws. When you order a latte, you receive a glass of milk. You order a cappuccino in the evening, and you are labeled a tourist.  

Italian Wine

Italian Wine

Italy is the world’s largest wine producer and home to some of the oldest regions that produce wine. Furthermore, Italian wine is regional, and it would be great to find what is local to the area you are visiting. With 20 regions, you will have an expansive wine variety to choose from.

Emilia-Romagna is not only Italy’s food capital but also a prolific wine region. This wine region is best known for a sparkling red wine known as Lambrusco. Trebbiano, white grape wine, is also popular in the region.

Sicily, the Mediterranean’s largest island, offers good red and white wine brands. The climate is dry and warm with abundant sunshine, making it perfect for growing grapes for wine production.

Italian Cured Meats

Italian cured meats

Italy has different methods of curing and flavoring meat, depending on the region. Some of the most popular Italian meats include Prosciutto di Parma, Pancetta, Soppressata, Prosciutto Cotto, and Mortadella.

Italian meats are the flagship of Italian cuisine. Pork is the most commonly used cured meat. However, you will also find other products, including chicken, beef, turkey, or game meat. Though meat curing is an ancient technique, the Italian meat curing process has improved; thanks to better farming techniques, raw materials, and animal feeding.

Italian cured meat undergoes a process that does not alter the organoleptic properties, making it a natural fit. Furthermore, the cured meat is excellent for savoring your taste buds and paying homage to Italian culture and history.

Famous Italian Pastries

Krapfen Con Panna Genoa

No trip to Italy is complete without enjoying a breakfast or snack in a cafe complete with Italian coffee and, of course, pastries. There’s loads of famous Italian snacks to enjoy at every local cafe.

There are so many options for tasty Italian pastries and sweets. Some of the most famous are cannoli or biscotti. But, because Italy has a regional cuisine, each Italian state or region has its own unique specialities.

Famous Landmarks In Italy

Italy has many beautiful landmarks that will provide you with memories that will last forever. Additionally, Italy’s famous landmarks are spread all over the country.

There are so many places Italy is famous for, and it is not possible to cover all of them. However, here are a few famous Italy landmarks. 

The Colosseum

The Colosseum is one of Italy’s famous landmarks. You can find this landmark in Rome, the capital city of Italy. It is one of Italy’s famous places and is known as the main symbol of Rome. Construction of the enormous oval amphitheater began in 70 AD and was completed in 80 AD.

Once you visit this landmark, you can walk through underground tunnels, stand where the gladiators fought, see where animals were kept, and enjoy a spectacular view from the top tier. It would be best to get a tour guide to help you make the best out of your visit.  

The best time to visit the Colosseum is 8:30 am, just after opening. Alternatively, you can choose to visit an hour or two before closing time. You will be able to avoid much human traffic during these times.

Amalfi Coast

The Amalfi Coast is a stretch along the Tyrrhenian Sea, located in Southern Italy in Campania. You can quickly get to Amalfi from Naples by taking a ferry. The coast is 34 miles long and will provide you with a spectacular view of 500-foot tall cliffs. In addition, the coast has 13 adorable seaside towns and 100 beaches.

The spring and fall, May and September, to be specific, are the best times to visit Amalfi Coast. During these months, there are comfortable temperatures of between 70 and 80 degrees Fahrenheit.

Cathedral of Santa Maria del Fiore

The Cathedral of Santa Maria del Fiore is one of Italy’s famous buildings and was completed in 1434. You can find this Cathedral in Florence. It is a religious center, the most recognized building in Florence, and a great tourist attraction.

When you visit this landmark, expect to strain your neck to have a view of the Cathedral’s massive iconic dome. The exterior is intricately designed with breathtaking features. However, you will be surprised to find out that the interior is just plain. Therefore, you will understand why many people say the gigantic church was designed inside-out. 

The Cathedral is open from 10.00 am to 4.30 pm, while other Duomo attractions are open from 8.15 am to 7.00 pm. However, it is better to arrive as early as 8.30 am to beat the crowds.

Leaning Tower Of Pisa

The Leaning Tower of Pisa is 60 meters tall and leans at approximately 60 degrees. This tower is a free-standing bell tower or the campanile of the Cathedral of Pisa. The tower is located in the city of Pisa, west-central Italy.

There isn’t much inside the tower of Pisa. It is hollow and surrounded by a smooth marble wall. A 300-step stairway will allow you to get to the top of the tower. However, there are other seven towers along the way.

The best time to visit the leaning tower of Pisa is in the morning before crowds arrive. The tower is mostly crowded from 10 am to midafternoon.

Mark’s Square – Piazza San Marco.

St. Mark’s Square is in the heart of Venice and is the main public square in the city. The square is home to Italy’s famous buildings such as the Doge’s place, the Basilica’s campanile, the Museo Correr, and the St. Marks Basilica. Napoleon himself referred to it as the most beautiful drawing room.

St. Mark’s square is bustling and crowded during the day. Therefore the best time to visit is early morning before crowds arrive. The square is also the lowest point in Venice and is flooded mostly from October to January.

Italy is a country that has a rich history and culture. The best way to learn about this country is to visit and know what Italy is famous for. Visiting this beautiful land will allow you to experience all of the beautiful things it has to offer, from fantastic food and wine to stunning architecture.

FAQs – Famous Italy

Is Italy a friendly country?

100% Yes. Overall, Italy is a very friendly country. Italians are proud of their country, their food, and are happy to welcome visitors. That said, there are plenty of people in Italy, and in every country, that don’t want outsiders. Thankfully, these are a minority of Italians.

Is there a lot of crime in Italy?

Italy has crime like every other country in the world. Is there a lot of crime in Italy, no? You will have to be more mindful when in larger cities like Rome and Naples. Crime, especially targeted towards tourists, is always higher in big cities.

Do you tip in Italy?

Unlike in places like the US, tipping is not expected in Italy. If you feel that you received great service, you are more than welcome to learn a tip. The tips shouldn’t be more than one or two Euros.

Culinary Travel To Italy

Food Traveler's Guide To Emilia Romagna

Our Italy Travel Experience

Our first trip to Italy was in 2000, and since then, we’ve taken dozens of trips to Italy to almost every region. Our most recent trip was in 2022.

This is easier for us as we live in Europe. We’ve taken food tours, cooking classes, visited wineries, and dined at some of the best restaurants in Italy. We are experts at Italy travel and, more importantly, eating in Italy.

Check out Amber’s book, the Food Traveler’s Guide To Emilia Romagna, which is available on Amazon. In addition to being a culinary travel guide to the region, it walks through how many of the typical Italian food products are made, like mortadella, prosciutto, and Parmigiano Reggiano.

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