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Travel to Italy to:

One of the reasons for Italy’s regionality is that today’s Repubblica Italiana is a relatively new invention. Relative to the nearly three millennia that have passed since the Etruscans founded the first farming city-states on the Apennine Peninsula, that is. One of them, named after the king-slash-demigod Romulus, had bigger plans. By the 1st century BC, Rome ruled Peninsular Italy and soon enough, much of the known world, from north-western Europe to the Near East. The ancient superpower’s legacy has long outlived the empire itself and has only been enriched during the centuries that followed after its fall in 476 AD. Until the 19th century, Italy was a playground (and battleground) of rich and famous city-states, such as Florence, Venice and Genoa. Art history, and Europe as a whole, came out as winners of this fierce rivalry, which led to the birth of the Renaissance and the rise of Leonardo Da Vinci, Michelangelo, Dante, Machiavelli, Galileo, Marco Polo and Christopher Columbus – and has changed the course of history once again.

Milan, the capital of fashion



Travel to Rome, Italy



Catania, a city reborn from lava



Food actually

You’ve guessed it: Italian cuisine is more like an umbrella term, too. But let’s see what a pan-Italian menu would look like, shall we? It would probably start with a light and simple insalata caprese. Originally from the Campania region’s Isle of Capri, this well-loved tricolour antipasto is made with fresh mozzarella, ripe tomatoes and sweet basil. Talk about a patriotic dish! For primo (first course), choose a Lombard classic: the bright yellow, rich risotto alla milanese is a staple on every menu in Milan as it should be on any foodie’s must-taste list. Or taste the rich and satisfying spaghetti alla carbonara, Rome’s invaluable contribution to the country’s gastro map. In the mood for something heavier? The Emilia-Romagna-native ragù a la Bolognese should be your order then, in any form available. Eat it with tagliatelle, if pasta is your thing, or oven-baked and generously layered into a besciamella-heavy lasagne. Still have room for dessert? Have some soft and smooth tiramisú wherever you are but especially in the Veneto region, where it was originally invented. Or so Venetians say.

Bari, down-to-earth and delicious



Alghero, the heart of Sardinia



Naples, grand dame of Campania



One country, many histories

The history of Italy is the history of many other nations, with chapters that delight, startle and stay with you forever. Visit the Eternal City where it all began. Queue at the Musei Capitolini and walk among Rome’s most precious artistic and archaeological treasures, most notably Lupa Capitolina, the iconic bronze statue of the she-wolf that nursed Rome-founder Romulus and Remus. Go to Venice to see what came next: get lost in the lavish, Venetian Gothic-style Palazzo Ducale (Doge’s Palace), from where the doges ruled the Venetian Republic and the most powerful navy of the Adriatic for over a thousand years. Descend to Pompeii, where, in 79 AD, it all went terribly wrong. Be a guest in the eerie villas of ill-fated locals whose bodies, homes, livestock, possessions and last moments are frozen in 2,000-year old Volcanic tephra. Then head to Milan to get a glimpse of where it’s all headed. Italy’s economic engine and most cosmopolitan city blends an incredibly rich heritage (The Last Supper, anyone?) with strong futurist vibes and the best and latest in Italian fashion and design.



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