Travel Tip Tuesday: Things You Should Know Before Visiting Southern Italy

Southern Italy has it all. There are ancient Medieval towns, peaceful fishermen villages, stretching beaches and swooping mountains. There are even Roman and Greek ruins. We learned about some of the most famous places in southern Italy as children and some of us grew up dreaming of the day we’d visit our grandparents’ homeland. But that doesn’t mean we know it all.

My then-boyfriend/now-husband grew up here in southern Italy and I was still surprised at some of the assumptions I made that were downright wrong!

With that in mind, here are three things I wish I’d known before I traveled to southern Italy.

(c) Leanne (pictured above) of From Australia to Italy

1. It Gets Brrr … Cold

Calabria has this fabulous reputation of being a hot, steamy, tropical getaway for northern Italians and other Europeans. Unfortunately, it’s crap. It gets downright cold here in southern Italy and depending on when and where you visit, you might see a lot of snow.

It’s true. Laura at Ciao Amalfi! recently posted some videos of a thunder snowstorm on the Amalfi Coast and Leanne of From Australia to Italy was recently snowed in near Cosenza (Calabria.)

2. All Restaurants/Trattorie/Pizzerie Were Created Equally

Regardless of what you may have heard, you *can* get a bad meal in southern Italy. I know. I’ve done it. Still, it is surprising to me when I hear people proclaim sweeping generalizations like, “It doesn’t matter where you eat-you are in Italy,” or “You can’t get a bad meal there!”

Trust me. You can.

If you are traveling to southern Italy and don’t want to be victim to an overcooked pizza or tasteless ragu, then search the Internet for recommendations made by locals or consider hiring a travel consultant who can help with the details.

3. Don’t Assume Anything



For example, many restaurants in the US offer free soda refills, in Italy, you will pay full price. Also, don’t assume that just because opening hours are posted on a museum’s website that they are correct, or that the museum is even open. Oh yea, and don’t assume that your hotel will have washcloths. In fact, they probably won’t. Italians don’t use them.

What other things do you wish you’d have known before you visited Italy?

Until next time … Buon Viaggio!

Traveling to southern Italy? Click here to see how I can help you plan the trip of a lifetime.

8 Responses
  1. Ciao Cherrye!
    Did you get any snow this year? I’m glad I didn’t miss the crazy little snowstorm we had on the Amalfi Coast. And, yes, it certainly does get cold! Where I am, it’s that cold, damp wind blowing off the sea that chills you to the bone. This is a fun post & I love that photo of Leanne! 🙂

    Isn’t that pic precious? And no, we didn’t get snow here, but they got a lot in the mountains! We just got RAIN!

    .-= Laura from Ciao Amalfi´s last blog ..Sugar Snow on the Amalfi Coast =-.

  2. Glad you wrote these tips as so, so many people think that it does not get cold here. But IT DOES!!! It’s the same as Australia – I am from Melbourne which is in the south and people think it’s hot all year round – and it’s not!

    Yea, too bad it isn’t year-round warmness here, right? Thanks again for letting me use your pic! I LOVE it!

    .-= Leanne in Calabria´s last blog ..Winter again… =-.

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