A year ago, we went back to Italy on vacation with our two kids. We arrived at the Venice airport with plenty of suitcases, strollers and backpacks. After claiming all our baggage, I looked for a cart. To my surprise, carts could only be unlocked from the rack using an Euro coin. But there was no coin dispenser available nor currency change bureau.
How do travelers from other countries get Euro coins before their trips? Banks only dispense paper notes.
While we managed eventually to get an unlocked cart, Francesca was puzzled by this episode and decided that during that trip she would have paid more attention to such details and took note of them. Before not long, we ended up with more than 80 topics that we thought were deserving some sort of explanation to first time travelers to Italy. And that was the time when we decided to create Italy from Inside.
Both my wife and I grew up in Italy and moved to US in 1996. I recall myself during the first 2-3 years of living abroad to continously making comparisons between my new and old lifestyles. I missed the good food, friends and walking to some places without the need of driving.
Then I started to get used to the comfortable living in the States, the large roads, the grocery shops always open and the efficiency of the public services. During my trips back to Italy I became more and more aware of differences that I didn’t notice when I was living there, because they were part of my everyday life, if I liked them or not.
Part of the fun of travel is discovering new cultures on your own. But knowing ahead of time some of those cultural differences may save you some time, possibly money and disappointments.
We expect to cover key topics such as driving, transportations, calling home, food, accommodation, but feel free to let us know if you’d like us to blog on something specific.
Welcome to our blog Italy From The Inside. My name is Paolo Tosolini and with my wife Francesca have decided to start publishing a series of useful tips for travelers planning to visit Italy for the first time.
Bookstores already offer a variety of travel guides about Italy, but they mostly focus on places to see and things to do. There is very little about introducing you to the real Italian culture, the way people do things in Italy, from driving to shopping to eating. And the more you’ll learn about it before your trip, the better prepared you’ll be to appreciate your sojourn.
Please enjoy the reading and please send us your comments on specific topics you’d like us to cover.