italy

San Marino

Because of San Marino’s high altitude, the view when walking around this enclave of central Italy is a bit like looking out of an aeroplane window onto endless clouds and the spectacular snow-capped Apennines. Founded in AD 301 by a stonemason named Marino, the rugged city-state claims to be the world’s oldest republic. Steeped in medieval history, a visit here is not complete without trekking up to the three imposing tower-fortresses perched along the cliff tops, the oldest of which, the Rocca Guaita, dates back to the 10th century. Also check out the infamous torture museum, which uses diagrams to explain how the gruesome instruments were used.

The tourist sector contributes over 2.2% of San Marino’s GDP, with approximately 2 million tourists visiting in a year. Be respectful when having photos taken with the guards, a smile will do, hand gestures/funny faces are not received well. It would be considered very offensive to call them “Italians” - not that they don’t like Italians, but they are just extremely proud of their independence.

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Positano, Italy

Positano is a small picturesque town with splendid coastal views, on the famous Amalfi Coast in Campania, Italy. The town itself is perched on an enclave on the face of a hill and winds down towards the waters of the Amalfi Coast. Naturally beautiful, Positano attracts thousands of visitors every year. All year long, the town is always full of people, but if you are planning to visit Positano, it would be best to schedule your trip during the spring season.

There are loads of little stairs leading from everywhere to everywhere straight. Alternatively there is the one road meandering down to the harbor. But while speaking on getting around you can also consider a bus that goes down and - especially - up the hill following the meandering always congested road.

While here you should definitely visit Collegiata di Santa Maria Assunta. This is one of the most famous attractions in Positano. The old church, boasting of a majestic dome, was built in the 1920s and is the location of the famous 13th century Byzantine icon, the Madonna di Positano. Also seeing the harbor is a great way to spend part of the day. You can also take ferry trips to Paestum or Ischia and Capri (including the Blue Grotto) during summer months.

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Florence, Italy

Florence is the capital of the region of Tuscany in Italy, with a population of about 366,500. The city is considered a cultural, artistic and architectural gem. When you get in Florence we recommend you get The Firenze Card, which is a 72 hour pass for Florence allowing access to about 30 museums and free use of the public transport system. In some museums you can queue jump the reservations procedure with the pass but it is best to check with individual museums. The cost of the card is €50 per person.

You shouldn’t miss out on the many museums Florence has to offer, including the world famous Galleria degli Uffizi - a fine art museum with collections of Renaissance paintings and sculptures from classical antiquity. Other notable museums are
Bargello - The museum houses one of the best examples of Renaissance and Mannerist sculpture. The works of many great Renaissance sculptors are on display here, including Michelangelo, Donatello, Ammannati, and Bandinelli.
Accademia Gallery, Pitti Palace and Institute and Museum of the History of Science. Other than museums you also have a lot to see, such as Santa Maria del Fiore (the city’s beautiful cathedral), Giotto’s Tower, Palazzo Vecchio, Ponte Vecchio, and Santa Croce.

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Capri, Italy

A truly wonderful place to be in. The small Italian island of Capri is situated 5 km from the mainland in the Bay of Naples, a celebrated beauty spot and coastal resort since the days of the Roman Republic until now. Capri, known in Greek mythology as the isle of the sirens, was a favored resort of the Roman emperors. Capri is reachable by boat only, while you can get around by foot, bus, funicolare or taxi.

There are a lot of things that you can see here, from the beautiful sunrise most choose to see to Blue Grotto (a beautiful cave at the water’s edge with a tiny opening to the sea that opens and closes with the tide, used as a bath since the Roman times). People also often choose to visit Villa San Michele and Villa Jovis.

Also, you might want to keep in mind that there are several festivals so that you can time your trip making sure you get to see one of the few great festival Capri has to offer.
Festival of San Costanzo On May 14th every year, the patron saint of the town of Capri, San Costanzo, is celebrated.
Festival of Sant’Antonio On June 13th every year, the patron saint of the town of Anacapri is celebrated with a large rustic festival.
International Folklore Festival During the 1st week of August, Anacapri plays host to a range of events in its squares, featuring musical bands and folk dance companies.
Settembrata Anacaprese in September is a large rustic festival for celebrating the grape harvest: 10 days of celebration dedicated to the island’s typical produce, including shows, competitions and games.

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Isola Bella

Located in the waters of Italy, Isola Bella is one of Borromean islands. This is a small place that will leave you out of breath, like its name says Isola Bella - ‘beautiful island‘. You will feel like in heaven just walking through its beauty. Isola Bella is 320 meters long by 400 meters wide and is entirely occupied by the Palace and its Italianate garden. It is such a pleasure enjoying the sights of this island, and learning about the interesting history this place hides. So if you ever choose to spend a romantic time within a luxurious accommodation, then this will be perfect for you.

Until 1632 the island was a rocky crag occupied by a tiny fishing village. The island achieved its highest level of social success during the period of Giberto V Borromeo when guests included Edward Gibbon, Napoleon and his wife Joséphine de Beauharnais, and Caroline of Brunswick, the Princess of Wales. It is said that Caroline, having fallen in love with the place, did her best to convince the Borromeo family to sell her Isola Madre. Nowadays Isola Bella is a popular tourist attraction, with a regular ferry service from Stresa, Laveno, Pallanza and Intra. It plays host to the annual Stresa music festival.

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Colosseum, Rome

If you ever thought about visiting a beautiful place within a beautiful constructions and history, then Rome is perfect for you. One of the best Roman sights is the Colosseum. It has a very powerful story behind it, from creating the construction over wars and entertainment to it still standing today. This sight is attractive to people from the entire world, it is just a must see.

The Colosseum, originally the Flavian Amphitheatre is an elliptical amphitheatre in the center of the city of Rome, Italy, the largest ever built in the Roman Empire. It is considered one of the greatest works of Roman architecture and Roman engineering. The Colosseum can accommodate 50,000 spectators who were seated according to rank and used to watch gladiatorial contests and public spectacles such as mock sea battles, animal hunts, executions, re-enactments of famous battles, and dramas based on Classical mythology. The building has been used for entertainment, but those entertainments were sanctioned in medieval era. It was later reused for such purposes as housing, workshops, quarters for a religious order, a fortress, a quarry, and a Christian shrine.

Colosseum prices:
Full ticket - €15.50
EU reduced ticket - €10.50 (available only for European citizens aged between 18 and 25)
EU complimentary ticket- €4.50 (available only for EU citizens aged above 65 and under 18)

Opening hours:
Mid February - mid March: 9 AM - 4.30 PM
Mid March - end March: 9 AM - 5.00 PM
End March - end August: 9 AM - 7.00 PM
End August - end Sept.: 9 AM - 6.30 PM
End Sept. - end October: 9 AM - 6.00 PM
End October - mid March: 9 AM - 4.00 PM
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