• Basic things to know about Italy for travelers

    2010-12-03

    Many travelers to Italy know of its history, culture and cuisine, but there may be some small practical details about Italian life that tourists would benefit from knowing before embarking on their vacation.

    Travelers who come to Italy in August should be prepared to find cities like Rome, Venice and Florence largely abandoned, with the exception of certain shopkeepers and tourists, AOL Travel reports. This is because like in France, Italians primarily go on vacation in August. Many businesses are closed, but those that cater to tourism may remain open.

    Another timing-related issue to consider when traveling to Italy is that the country's restaurants often close for a period of several hours shortly after lunch. Not only do they do this because of decreased business during those hours, but also to provide their employees with the chance to eat and take a break during this time.

    Cuisine-related peculiarities and traditions abound in a culture so well-known for its food, but there are nevertheless a few basic things to remember that may help a tourist make the most of his meals. Italian restaurants typically serve an appetizer, followed by a first course of pasta, which is followed by a second course of meat or fish. Salad is eaten after all these courses, as it is reportedly believed to facilitate digestion. 

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