Savor a Gastronomic Adventure With Michelin Kitchens, Fine Wines, and Majestic Coastlines Brimming With History
Our Expert Opinion
Spend a couple of days in trendy and sophisticated island of Capri enjoying its chic boutiques, spas, and fine dining, and don’t miss the hillside village of Anacapri. Escape to tranquility on the island of Ischia, and stroll the winding alleys of Amalfi savoring its cultural treasures. A side trip to ruins of Pompeii is a must for history buffs.
Majestic mountainous coastline, villages perched on cliffs, beautiful beaches, boutique shopping, UNESCO heritage sites, luxury resorts, Michelin star chefs, exquisite olive oils and wines, and jet setting
Location and Size
Italy is a mountainous peninsula located in southern Europe. With an area of 116,304 square miles (301,230 square kilometers), Italy is the fifth-most populous country of the continent and has the eighth-largest economy in the world. Its 4,722 miles (7,600 kilometers) coastline is bound by the Mediterranean Sea on the west and the Adriatic Sea on the east. They, along with the Ionian Sea, Tyrrhenian Sea and the Ligurian Sea, consist of around 70 small islands besides Sicily and Sardinia, located in the Strait of Sicily and the Sea of Sardinia respectively that together constitute the Italian nation.
The history of Italy can be dated back to 500 BC when a number of ethnic groups cohabited in this region including the Greeks, the Gauls and the Etruscans – who laid the foundation of the Roman Civilization.
Rome is theorized to be founded on April 21, 753 BC by Romulus and Remus, after whom it was named. Legend has it that these twin brothers were the sons of Mars – the God of War and were raised by a she-wolf.
Romulus killed his brother Remus to become the first king of Italy and after the reigns of seven kings, the Roman Republic was formed in 509 BC. The bloodshed-marred Roman Empire was pushed into the Dark Ages until the 14th Century. Around that time, states like Florence, Pisa, Milan, Genoa, Venice and great names like Leonardo Da Vinci, Michelangelo, Dante and Galileo revolutionized this region in the fields of commerce, art, literature, politics and science. Meanwhile, explorers like Marco Polo and Christopher Columbus highlighted Italy on the world map.
In the 19th Century, Napoleon allied with Giuseppe Garibaldi to unite Italy and accomplish the descent of Rome. In 1919, Benito Mussolini professed that Italy, despite being victorious in World War I, had not gained from it and waged a war to restore Italy as a
superpower. Mussolini manifested his ambitions with the conquest of Ethiopia and Albania. In World War II, the Fascist Italians joined the Nazis. The alliance failed. Mussolini was abandoned by Hitler, and he and his aides were killed by the Italian partisans.
After the Second World War, Italy underwent a complete political and economic makeover. Italy adopted a republican form of government in exchange for the pre-existing monarchy.
A member of the European Union, Italy is today a major tourism hub. At 50, Italy has more UNESCO world heritage sites than any other nation.
BY AIR: Italy's main intercontinental gateway for yacht charter excursions is Naples International Airport (NAP), which transports visitors to Naples - the home of Pizza, the ancient city of Pompeii and the glorious Amalfi Coast. Major Italian cities are connected to the rest of the world with an enormous network of flights. Since Italy is a popular international destination, there is often a huge rush for air-tickets whose prices vary with the season and the time of booking.
BY SEA: Italy is well connected with all other Mediterranean countries as well as some other parts of Europe with a plethora of ferry services. Some routes are operational only in summer.
Best Time to Go
Late April to mid-October is the yacht charter season. May and June are the best months to witness the flora and fauna, especially of southern Italy which generally experiences a very pleasant climate during this period. The shores are most visited during the month of August. From late September through early October, the beaches are less crowded while the temperatures still remain suitable for a plunge.
Local Customs to Observe
The traditional handshake is the ritual of introduction in Italy too. Italians are very fashion-conscious and renowned for their adherence to latest trends. Italians don't consider it appropriate to walk the streets in bathing costumes and flip flops. They don't choose to wear jeans while going to a classy restaurant or church.
Helpful Fast Facts
TIME ZONE: Central European Time (UTC+01:00)
LOCAL LANGUAGE: Around 93% of the population use Italian as their native language. English is often spoken and understood by those engaged in the tourism industry; however, a little knowledge of Italian can be a big advantage
POPULATION: Italy has a population of 59,799,922 as of March 3, 2016
AIRPORT: Naples International Airport (NAP) for an Amalfi Coast itinerary
ENTRY REQUIREMENTS: U.K., U.S., Irish, Canadian, Australian and New Zealand citizens holding a valid passport and on a less than 90 days stay are exempt from needing a visa to enter Italy. Documents pertaining to relationship and permission may be required for children to travel.
DEPARTURE TAX: None
LEGAL DRINKING AGE: 18 years old
SMOKING REGULATIONS: Smoking is prohibited in enclosed and public spaces
STAYING IN TOUCH: Various networks of cellular service providers keep you in touch with home and beyond
MEDICAL INFORMATION: A large number of English speaking doctors and nurses are available throughout Italy. Dial 118 for ambulance
PUBLIC HOLIDAYS: New Year's Day Capuano (Jan 1), Epiphany Epifania (Jan 6), Pasqua (Easter Sunday), Lunedì di Pasqua (Easter Monday), Anniversary of Liberation Liberazione 1945 (April 25), Labour day Festa del Lavoro (May 1), Republic Day Festa della Repubblica 1946 (June 2), Assumption Day Assunzione (Aug 15), All Saints Tutti i Santi (Nov 1), Immaculate Conception Immacolata (Dec 8), Christmas Natale (Dec 25), St. Stephen's Day Santo Stefano (Dec 26), New Year's Eve San Silvestro (Dec 31).
SHOPPING INFORMATION: Italy is a premier shopping destination offering the best of art, fashion, jewelry, craftwork, clothing and fashion accessories. Ask in store for a Premier Tax Free form while buying goods in Italy for personal use. Fill the form completely and have it signed by a store/shop employee. The Italian Sales Tax or IVA is refundable for foreign visitors at the airport or train stations. It is advised to keep all your purchase receipts and have a legal ID document as proof of foreign citizenship.
Top Ten "Must Do's"
Cast off on a guided rowboat tour of the shimmering and infamous Blue Grotto
Enjoy the fresh flavors of Campania at Ristorante Quattro Passi in Nerano with 2-star Michelin chef Anthony Mellino
Hire a vintage convertible with driver and tour Capri and Anacapri or take the furnuicular
Have your charter specialist arrange a private Bulgari viewing on your yacht
Celebrate that special someone in your life with a private dinner at the Medieval Castle on the Sorrento Coast
Relax in a thermal spa on Ischia
Enjoy lunch under the lemon trees at DaPaolino Restaurant in Capri and don’t miss their gelato!
A tryst with nature at the picturesque hillside village of Ravello and the Villa Cimbrone Gardens
Turn the pages of history at the Roman ruins in Pompeii
Reserve a table at the historic Michelin star La Caravella Restaurant in Amalfi and be sure to tuck into their ceramics art gallery beforehand
Major Local and Regional Events
Opera Season in Verona (July-September); indulge yourself in an evening of great music and entertainment
Spoleto Festival dei Due Mondi (June/July) in the appealing Umbrian hilltown Spoleto, showcasing numerous concerts, dramas, operas, dance and visual arts
Puccini Festival (July-August) at Torre del Lago (near Lucca), featuring the operas of the famous Italian composer Giacomo Puccini
Rossini Opera Festival (August) in seaside Pesaro - birthplace of the opera composer Gioachino Rossini
Venice Carnival (January-February), renowned for its elaborate masks, ends with the Christian celebration of Lent, 40 days before Easter.
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