Here’s a quick post on 10 handy things you might want to know before you visit Italy for the first time…..
1. Italy uses the metric system for weights and measurements.
2. Everywhere is shut on Sundays, but shops are open late into the day ready for the evening passeggiata.
3. Some basic Italian language is almost essential, Even if you can’t put a sentence together its an idea to know the basics so you at least know when someone says good morning to you or you can say you’re welcome (Prego) if someone holds a door open for you.
4. When in large tourist areas head down the side roads and alleyways food and drinks are usually cheaper and you may just discover some hidden gem tucked away.
5. Good walking shoes are a must, spending all day scouring the cities and strolling round galleries can be tiring and your back and feet will thank you for having on a comfy pair of shoes.
6. Cash is used almost everywhere, although credit and debit cards are accepted Italians like to use cash and its better to have money when paying for anything. Plus you wont be getting any nasty shocks from you banks for using your cards abroad!
7. Italians eat late, if you’re looking for somewhere nice to have a meal and the place is deserted it doesn’t mean its bad or “not where the locals eat” it just may be that your too early most italians don’t eat till very late (8 or 9 pm) in the evening.
8. When visiting any churches or religious buildings dress appropriately, shorts and sleeveless tops are frowned upon in places of worship and its a good idea to have a cardigan or something to cover your bare shoulders for respect.
9. Validate your tickets, If travelling by bus or train you will need to stamp your ticket at one of the yellow machines (either as you get on the bus or at train station platforms), the little hole it punches into the ticket will stop you getting a hefty fine.
10. Dont forget you passport and your euros, and most of all have fun and explore!
Please feel free to add anything to the list in the comments box below……