Italy began as a collection of city-states. Today each of its many cities still feels like its own little world with its own set of world-famous treasures: beautiful cathedrals and important da Vinci paintings. Move from city to city, investigating relics from the Roman Empire, some of the world’s largest and most spectacular churches and some of the best-known pieces of Renaissance art. Travellers have been falling under Italy's spell ever since the days of the 18th-century Grand Tour, enticed by its sun-kissed landscape, delectable cuisine and extraordinary art.
It is also famous worldwide for its delicious cuisine, its trendy fashion industry, luxury sports cars and motorcycles, diverse regional cultures and dialects, as well as for its beautiful coast, alpine lakes and mountain ranges. No wonder it is often nicknamed the 'Bel Paese' (the Beautiful Country).