Italy at its very best - When?
During Winter - Bella Italia
Italy is beautiful"Bella Italia" in all seasons even during the very hot summer of August, the traditional Italian holiday month, when depending on your destination it can be uncomfortable due to the crowds.

Especially in Rome, where a monk friend of mine, a resident of Rome, would describe the crowds as"masses of humanity".

Sicily in Winter
However look at the beautiful winter countryside in Sicily. Winter is certainly cooler and there is a little more rain in some months, but it is a wonderful time to enjoy Bella Italia.

Fewer people travelling means less queuing and less hassle - better offers to tourists - less crowding in public places and better attention to your needs from those serving you.
Why Sicily in Winter?

SIC109 in Cefalu, Sicily
Winter is a time of generally mild weather as the weather charts attest.

Milan in the north has an average temperature of 40 f and 2.9 inches of rain in the period November to March.

Rome is slightly warmer and wetter at 49 F and 3.4 inches of rain.
Palmero in Sicily is beautiful, 57 F and only 1.9 inches of rain. Not much chance of getting wet here.

This is why so many people enjoy Italy - off peak. Italy has, and is the classical Mediterranean climate - it is just wonderful.
Winter in Italy
Winter in Italy is completely under-rated and not understood.

The writer has travelled extensively in Italy at all times of the year and if on holiday avoids the peak popular tourist times - Spring, Autumn and Summer.

Cafes are still busy, coffee great...
It is not as wet or as cold as in many parts of the world
During winter in Italy there are clearly less tourists in Rome than at other times of the year
Travelling off peak brings rewards with the lower air-fares to and from Italy

St Marks square in Venice in Winter, notice the tourists?

Lines are not as long at the Vatican in Winter!
Significant are the opportunities from being able to move around more easily - with less hassle and be able to see and enjoy more - the public transport system is so easy to navigate during winter
Queues are much shorter and reservations to visit icons are more readily available - many of these icons are only accessible by making a reservation by phone to an automated ticketing system
Monastery lodgings are heated.

Winter is a great time to visit Italy if you are seeking a quality visit amongst the Italian population not masked by the veneer of commercial tourism and the tourist crowds. Bella Italia!! Enjoy!!!

About Monastery Stays
Monastery Stays Pty is a typical innovative small company established to provide a superior service for people wanting an authentic experience in Italy of staying in unique and value for money lodgings conducted by religious orders, showing warm hospitality to all travellers.

Monastery Stays Pty Ltd
Angela Hoban
VP Customer Relations

Email: info@monasterystays.com
Website: www.monasterystays.com

Note: The author is David Hoban, a director of Monastery Stays Pty Ltd. This article may be freely reproduced if acknowledgement is given to Monastery Stays Pty Ltd or a link to our website provided.