Discover Italy travel guide 

Tourists love Italy, a vibrant and modern country where the food and wine connoisseur can drive around the countryside and history buffs can explore ancient cities.

Often referred to as ‘The Boot’ due to its unique shape, Italy is a great country to explore on its own or as a central point to Europe. 

Italy’s neigbouring countries are Austria, France, Vatican City, Slovenia, and Switzerland. Italy is on Central European Time (CET) UTC+1 but also participates in daylight savings known as ‘Summer Time’, which is UTC+2.

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Emergency Numbers

Emergency dial 112
Police dial 113
Fire dial 115
Ambulance dial 118

Main Ethnic Groups

95% Italian

Main Religion

83% Roman Catholicism
12% Atheism
4% Islam

Geographic Facts Capital and largest city: Rome (2.8 million people)

Italian culture has flourished for centuries and is heavily infused with family, food, art and music.

  • It’s customary to say ‘good day’ or ‘good evening’ (buonasera) on entering a small shop, café or lift.
  • If visiting a local home for a meal, always accept a small amount first as you will be persuaded to accept a second helping.
  • You must have your shoulders and knees covered to enter a church, so dress appropriately even if it’s hot.
  • The locals drink in moderation and it is considered embarrassing to be drunk in public.
  • Ciao = Hello
  • Grazie = Thank you
  • Quanto costa? = How much is this?
  • Buona giornata = Have a nice day
  • Mi scusi = Excuse me
Image of the Grand Canal and Basilica di Santa Maria della Salute
Italy is a country that can be visited all year round depending on your preference. If you  are looking for a beach holiday, avoid August as this is when most locals head to the beaches and they can become overcrowded. Spring is a good time for mild weather and fewer crowds.
Italy has four main seasons throughout the year. In summer, the days can get very humid meaning that it may feel hotter than it actually is. Temperatures below are averages for Rome:
Jul to Sep
16° / 31°
Oct to Dec
7° / 17°
Jan to Mar
3° / 15°
Apr to Jun
11° / 24°
Transport across Italy is excellent. Most major cities have good metro systems and the bus networks across the country are extensive. In small towns, public transport timetables can be affected on Sundays and holidays.
Dialing code +39

Visas - A visa is not required for tourists or business travellers up to 90 days.
The drinking age in Turkey is 16 or over.
Tipping - Not expected. Rounding up your bill is fine. A service charge is sometimes added to the bill, which must be indicated on the menu.
Language is Italian.
Currency Euro
(CAD$1 = €0.66)
*average rate, 2017-2021.
Drive on the right side of the road.
Electrical / device: 220/240 V - Type C, F and L plug. 
  • Longest pizza was 1.5km long at Milan’s Expo 2015.
  • Largest cup of cappuccino contained 4,250 litres in 2013.
  • Largest Tiramisu at 3,015kg was prepared in Gemona del Friuli in 2015.
National icons are the Italian Flag, the Colosseum, the Stella d’Italia (Italian star) and Vespas.
DISCLAIMER: While every effort has been made to ensure the accuracy of all information as of the date of publishing, Allianz Global Assistance does not accept liability for any errors or omissions. Allianz Global Assistance strongly recommends seeking the guidance of a professional travel agent/agency for further information on a specific destination. On your next trip, whether to another province or country, ensure you have travel insurance as it may assist you in cases of unforeseen medical emergencies and other types of mishaps that can happen while you travel. Travel insurance does not cover everything, please always refer to the policy document for full terms and conditions, including limitations and exclusions. Travel insurance is underwritten by CUMIS General Insurance Company, a member of The Co-operators Group of Companies, administered by Allianz Global Assistance, which is a registered business name of AZGA Service Canada Inc.
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