First Impressions of Italy and Italians

Una BaufalaDestinations, Europe, Italy, Travels and Adventures Comments

In Milan

One day in Bergamo – city we have already been to a couple of years ago. Walking in familiar streets, walking up to Citta Alta, enjoying peacefulness of this small and medieval city. Two days in busy and stylish Milan. Walking around, visiting famous and spectacular Duomo. Longing for Asian atmosphere, wandering around in China Town.


Now, for more than a week, we are living with Italian family. In their property in rural part of Italy, surrounded by high hills. It is located 100 km south from Milan. We are helping this family with daily tasks in their property (Workaway volunteering).

rural part of italy

Today I want to share with you our first impressions about Italy. 

You can’t escape winter in Italy

Yes, it is warmer than in Northern Europe. Rarely it is under 0 *C degrees. But, you know what, these some degrees above zero could be even worse than real winter with snow, especially when combined with rain, fog and chilly wind.

There are some parts in Italy where it is warmer, but it is nothing compared to warmth for instance in Canary Islands. 

Italians are very kind and helpful

Mostly Italians don’t speak English, but as we have experienced, both in the city and here, in rural part, – if they know some words they will try to speak English with you. Or will help you in another way – using signs or showing with their hands, for example, without making you feel guilty or stupid that you don’t know something, either it’s language, or something like – where to buy tickets, where to go!

And they don’t seem too loud at all as they show it in movies. Indians beat them, for sure. 

Eating is important for Italians

Italians eat a lot. And they do it carefully, finishing all the food, in the end using bread to clean the plate. Meals ususally are long, one hour is nothing. When we feel that we have eaten a lot, Italian places more food on the plate, and then one more time! And red wine is used to wash it all down. Wine is usually homemade and tasty (yes, we, wine-not-drinkers, just said it).

After the meal Italians drink coffee. It is not a standard sized “Nescafe mug”, but really small cup, half filled with bitter and strong coffee.


Long pasta, short pasta, round pasta, thin pasta, thick pasta, grey pasta, white pasta, pasta with tomatoe sauce, pasta with cheese sauce, pasta made from potatoes, pasta in salad, pasta in soup, pasta in stew… Different pasta for different life situations, haha. And in different kind of sauces. Many regions and even cities have their own pasta.

And the same for cheese, it is used everywhere. On pasta, as a starter. We already know which is the tasty one, which is the super-smelly one, which is the bitter one,…


Have you been to Italy? What are your thoughts about Italy and Italians?

Author: Una Baufala

Una is a traveler and travel blogger from Latvia. Apart from traveling and exploring new places she loves to read books. And she adores cats. Together with Kaspars they have been traveling – volunteering – working abroad since October 2013. is where she shares her travel experiences.

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