12 Facts About Italy

12 Facts About Italy

Italy is full of intriguing history, breath-taking sights and beyond incredible food.

Extending out into the Mediterranean Sea, Italy is home to many famous landmarks including the Colosseum and the Leaning Tower of Pisa.

We’ve compiled 12 interesting facts about this boot-shaped peninsula that you might be surprised to learn.

  1. Italy is derived from the word ‘Italia’ which means calf land. It is thought to have been adopted because the bull was a symbol that was used by southern tribes.
  2. The formal name for Italy is actually Repúbblica Italiana which translates to the Italian Republic.
  3. Almost 80% of the Italian landscape is made of hills and mountains
  4. Founded by the Catholic Church in 1303 AD, the University of Rome is one of the oldest universities in the world and the largest in Europe with 150,000 students.
  5. Including the isles of Sicily and Sardinia, Italy is about the same size as the state of Arizona at 116,400 square miles.
  6. With such a rich history of famous artists and architecture, Italy is believed to be home to more art and masterpieces per square mile, than any other country in the world!
  7. The children’s story Pinocchio, made famous by Walt Disney Productions, was based on the novel ‘The Adventures of Pinocchio’ which was written by Italian author Carlo Collodi. He was born and died in Florence.
  8. The highest mountain peak in Europe is in Italy. The White Mountain also known as Monte Bianco or Mont Blanc, forms part of the Alps mountain range and stands at 15,771 feet.
  9. The Vatican City and the Republic of San Marino are both completely independent countries within Italy.
  10. Situated along a fault line, Italy is home to more volcanoes than any other country in Europe.
  11. The region of Abruzzo in central Italy is home to a drinking fountain that flows with red wine. Created by a local vineyard the ‘fontana del vino’ offers hikers and tourists the revitalising wine for free, 24 hours a day, 7 days a week.
  12. The first Italian McDonald’s was opened in Rome in 1986, Italian food purists protested by handing out free spaghetti outside the restaurant in order to remind people of Italy’s culinary heritage.

    Whether you fancy some tasty authentic Italian spaghetti or something from the grill, our new menu’s cater for all tastes and appetites. Make a reservation online today or call 01565 632 576 if you would prefer to discuss your booking with a member of the Giovanni’s team.

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