While many people tend to think that traveling in Italy means a lot of lazing on sunny beaches and soaking in crystal blue waters, those who study abroad in Rome will find that winter is actually a great time for travel, – especially if you’re a fan of winter sports! So what makes Italy in the winter so enticing?
Wandering around the beautiful city of Rome and scoping out popular attractions, such as the Coliseum or the Roman Forum, is far more mellow and enjoyable in the winter without all the hustle and bustle of hundreds of tourists. Lines are shorter or non-existent and you can just sit back, relax and take in all of the beauty of these sublime ancient wonders. So if you’ve been avoiding them the whole time you’ve been in the country because of the massive lines, now’s your chance!
Skiing and Snowboarding
The fact that six Italian regions overlook the world famous Alps should be the first thing to tip you off to the news that Italy is one of the premiere destinations in the world for winter sports. The other fact that should alert you to Italy’s great slopes is that it’s also home to the Dolomites – which are equally beautiful. So all you enthusiasts of skiing, both downhill and cross country, snowboarding and snowshoeing take note, because Italy’s ski hills are some of the finest in the world. International students in Italy who are missing their downhill rush should be sure to check them out and get a little taste of home.
The winter festival of Carnevale in Italy is an absolute ball – a snowball that is! Like other festivals around the world celebrating “carnival,” Italy’s is held in the winter months during the 40 days before Easter in many cities. Carnevale festivities in Venice, Viareggio and Acireale are especially lively. The dates vary from city to city, but activities include intricate mask making and lavish parades with floats and dancing. The city of Ivrea is also home to the famous “Battle of the Oranges”, in which combatants playfully pelt each other with the citrus fruit.
Explore at a Discount
In Italy in the winter, because of the lower influx of tourists, most usually pricey accommodations are vastly reduced in price, as is transportation, meaning you can explore the far reaches of the country for pennies on the dollar – or centesimi on the Euro, as it were. It’s important to see as much of Italian culture as you can if you study abroad in Italy and this is a more affordable way of doing it. From the splendor of Sicily to the canals of Venice, you can explore to your heart’s content.
So, as you can see, there’s no need for the winter blues when you’re in such a diverse and exciting country. Italy has a wealth of cultural and scenic offerings for every season; all you have to do is look for them!