Summer in Italy (Ideal place for your holidays)
Summer in Italy, Stay in Italy for vacation and Holidays, the best beaches of mediterranean
Italy, with plenty of sun and 8,500 km [5,345 miles] of coastline, is one of Europe's prime destinations for beach holidays though many of the beaches - especially on the mainland - are rocky or composed of shingle and packed with local people, especially at the weekends.
Popular resorts lie along the Italian Riviera in Liguria, stretching from France to Tuscany, or around the Adriatic and Amalfi coasts. Though beaches can be a far from peaceful, they are often quite enchanting - young and old in bikinis, packed like sardines into small free beach areas, or cruising up and down the sands nattering to the neighbours like a busy Italian market day.
Some of the most beautiful beaches can be found on the islands such as Sicily, which has large sandy beaches on the southern coast, while arguably the best are in Sardinia, many of which are still unspoilt. See the Sardinia Travel.
Although it is not as rich in local colour as Sicily, Sardinia has the charming old town of Cágliari, the capital, and also some prehistoric wonders of native civilizations. For example Nuraghe Su Nuraxi, near the village of Barúmini, is a well preserved circular fortified stone structure, while Nora is the ruins of an ancient Phoenician city with a theatre and mosaic baths.
The Sartiglia Festival in Oristano is a colourful three day costumed play, with horseback parade.
Sardinia Beaches guide:
The Costa Smeralda, in northeast Sardinia, is the best-known upmarket beach area, while on the northwest coast is the popular package tourist town of Alghero.
Cágliari has the popular 6 mile white sand stretch of Poetto Beach, or try the turquoise sea and fairly unspoilt, laid-back beach of La Pelosa, near Stintino on the northwestern tip of the island.
Some excellent beaches can also be found along the Costa Verde in the southwest, at the exclusive resort complex of Torre dei Corsar, and Piscinas Beach - just south of Mariana di Arbus - has 3,000 acre of sand dunes known as the 'Sahara of Italy', while further south the huge, deserted Scivu Beach has great natural beauty but no facilities.
Diving is a well-established activity here, especially around the Maddalena Islands off the town of Palau in north.
Transport? Some direct international flights are available as well as frequent daily domestic flights, or time-rich tourists have the cheaper option of ferries.
About 75% of Italy is mountainous or hilly, and roughly 20% of the country is forested. There are narrow strips of low-lying land along the Adriatic coast and parts of the Tyrrhenian coast. In addition to Rome, other important cities include Milan, Naples, Turin, Genoa, Palermo, Bologna, Florence, Catania, Venice, Bari, Trieste, Messina, Verona, Padua, Cagliari, Taranto, Brescia, and Livorno.
Northern Italy, made up largely of a vast plain that is contained by the Alps in the north and drained by the Po River and its tributaries, comprises the regions of Liguria, Piedmont, Valle d'Aosta (see Aosta, Valle d'), Lombardy, Trentino–Alto Adige, Venetia, Friuli–Venezia Giulia, and part of Emilia-Romagna (which extends into central Italy). It is the richest part of the country, with the best farmland, the chief port (Genoa), and the largest industrial centers. Northern Italy also has a flourishing tourist trade on the Italian Riviera, in the Alps (including the Dolomites), on the shores of its beautiful lakes (Lago Maggiore, Lake Como, and Lake Garda), and in Venice. Gran Paradiso (13,323 ft/4,061 m), the highest peak wholly situated within Italy, rises in Valle d'Aosta.
The Italian peninsula, bootlike in shape and traversed in its entire length by the Apennines (which continue on into Sicily), comprises central Italy (Marche, Tuscany, Umbria, and Latium regions) and southern Italy (Campania, Basilicata, Abruzzi, Molise, Calabria, and Apulia regions). Central Italy contains great historic and cultural centers such as Rome, Florence, Pisa, Siena, Perugia, Assisi, Urbino, Bologna, Ravenna, Rimini, Ferrara, and Parma. The major cities of S Italy, generally the poorest and least developed part of the country, include Naples, Bari, Brindisi, Foggia, and Taranto.
Except for the Po and Adige, Italy has only short rivers, among which the Arno and the Tiber are the best known. Most of Italy enjoys a Mediterranean climate; however, that of Sicily is subtropical, and in the Alps there are long and severe winters. The country has great scenic beauty—the majestic Alps in the north, the soft and undulating hills of Umbria and Tuscany, and the romantically rugged landscape of the S Apennines. The Bay of Naples, dominated by Mt. Vesuvius, is one of the world's most famous sights.
The great majority of the population speaks Italian (including several dialects); there are small German-, French-, and Slavic-speaking minorities. Nearly all Italians are Roman Catholic. There are numerous universities in Italy, including ones at Bari, Bologna, Genoa, Milan, Naples, Turin, Padua, Palermo, an