- Be Prepared for Public Transportation
- Have reasonable expectations on where you can go and what you can see
- Get off the Tourist Trail
- Know busy times from slow times
- Learn a little about Italian regions
- Pack appropriately
- Shop at Markets
- Pick up some Italian
Read the above BLOG for more information on each of the eight topics listed. Italy is a place to enjoy and have fun. It is not a place to be hidden in a tour group with a bunch of other Americans. Leave the bus behind! Get out on your own and experience the real Italy. Not being part of a formal tour means:
- Better food! The tours go to places that specialize in feeding a lot of people quickly and giving a kick back to the tour company. Italians do nor prepare or eat their food quickly.
- Better time at the tourist attractions. You can spend as much or as little time as you want at each attraction. Get a guide-book. They all list the top ten things you must do. You won’t miss anything and you probably will see much more.
- When you are tired sit at an outside table at a trattoria and have something to eat with some wine. Watch the Italians around you. This is so much better than sitting on a bus looking at Italy through a window.
- Take side trips to towns nearby that interest you. The train system in Italy is fast, efficient and easy to use. Check schedules for last train back.
- Don’t shop at obvious tourist shops. They are selling junk that may not even be made in Italy. Look for small Italian stores off the turist streets.
- Eat in small Italian trattorias, never in tourist restaurants. Don’t eat hot dogs and hamburgers! Eat real Italian food. You can get the American junk food when you return but you can not get the type and quality of Italian food in America. It is different!
- Walk if you are able or take Metros (they are safe, fast and efficient) or a taxi.
Remember one thing, Italy is to be enjoyed! So enjoy it!
George & Jo Anne