Italy is the kind of place where the food and culture are just as memorable as the experience. There are so many notable attractions that make Italy such a great place to live.
The “Bel Paese” (Beautiful Country) is home to many of the most famous works of art, cuisine and architecture in the world. In fact, the sheer variety of these attractions is astounding with the ability to witness multiple centuries of architecture without leaving the same city.
That being said, maybe you want something more laid-back and away from these busy places?
Well, the Italian countryside is a stunning place to live and far more affordable than most people think.
Let’s be honest, we all like to think that we “live for the moment” but this is increasingly hard in such a busy and complicated modern world. In fact, the rise of the online world is a good example of how most people are looking down (at a cell phone) rather than looking up at what is actually in front of them. Now, that’s not to say there is anything wrong with spending time online but rather to explain the importance of what the locals refer to as “La Dolce Vita”.
You see, Italians know that everyday life is just a moment in time and one that should be cherished at every opportunity. For locals, spending time with friends and family is most important, while good food and conversation usually accounts for this quality time. On the other hand, La Dolce Vita is reflected in many more ways than one and you will find the overall objective is to slow down and smell the roses.
It’s true, life is supposed to be slow and mindful. Family and friends are here to be cherished. And the everyday pleasures in life should be treated with gratitude – something which is ingrained in the Italian lifestyle.
As you know, Italy was the epicenter of the Renaissance, the birthplace of the Roman Empire and the home of many of the most famous works of art on the planet. For this reason, you can find unique architecture everywhere you go and iconic landmarks such as the Roman Forum, Cinque Torre and the Leaning Tower of Pisa. Moreover, whether its da Vinci and Michaelangelo or the unmistakable ceiling in the Sistine Chapel, you will find stunning art at every turn.
And then there is the sublime food, from tagliatelle and pizza to cannoli, beef-steak and local dishes with fresh seafood. As if that’s not enough, Italy is one of the best known wine producing countries in Europe and the variety of blends is nothing less than mouth-watering.
While you may not be coming to live in Italy for tourist destinations or famous landmarks, it must be said that these attractions offer the perfect excuse to get out and explore this fascinating country.
With the last point in mind, you can surely appreciate that Italy is an exciting place to travel. While Florence, Rome and Venice stand out as the more colorful cities, there is arguably much more to see in the countryside. In other words, taking a trip away from these busy areas will bring you face to face with idyllic villages, winding country roads, rolling hills and places that seem far removed from modern day Europe.
If you visit the north, there is also the icy Alp’s where glacial lakes and immense peaks provide the perfect playground for outdoor enthusiasts. Meanwhile, Cinque Terre is arguably the most colorful stretch of coastline in Europe and when it comes to stretches of sand, Italy has no less than 248 beaches!
Now, let’s not assume that you have children and plan on having children but just so you know, Italy is home to four of the oldest universities in the world. More importantly, these are outstanding examples of the education system in Italy and something you can likely access upon arrival.
You see, EU citizens are entitled to free education all the way up until the end of high school. What’s more, university fees are extremely small compared to what you will find elsewhere in Europe. If you qualify for dual citizenship you can enjoy this benefit as well as a host of others.
If you have no intention of taking advantage of such benefits, at least you know that you are moving to a highly educated part of the world where the locals truly value the importance of knowledge.
Yes, if you want to settle down in the tourists districts of Rome or Florence, you can expect to pay a rather extortionate premium. However, most locals want to avoid these busy areas and you will most likely feel the same after a few weeks of living in Italy.
The truth is, renting elsewhere in Italian cities is much more affordable and aside from accommodation, the cost of living is surprisingly low. What’s more, if you decide to settle in rural areas such as the northern territories, these costs are also significantly lower.
For example, you might end up paying $10 for a glass of red wine near the Colosseum but just a few miles from here, the very same glass is going for less than $4. Needless to say, you can expect the same with meals and grocery stores are priced in a similar bracket to the rest of Western Europe. As for the accommodation, you can find apartments on the outskirts of the city for less than $700 per month and in rural areas this figure can be as little as $400/$500.
In case you might be asking yourself, an annual income of $30k should be enough to maintain a reasonably comfortable lifestyle in the city but this figure can quite easily drop below $20k in rural parts of the country.
Locals are Friendly - Many locals have a reasonable grasp on the English language, but we should also assume that you also at least plan on learning some Italian. Either way, you should find that the locals are super friendly and always very hospitable toward visitors.
The Weather is Reliable – Can you believe that we managed to cover reasons to live in Italy without mentioning the climate? Italy is home to fantastic weather conditions all-year-round.
Diverse Landscapes – In Venice you have the canals, in the north you will find the mountains and all around you will see the ocean. Indeed, the landscapes in Italy are incredibly diverse.
Fashion is Everywhere – You don’t need to be materialistic to appreciate the incredible sense of fashion in Italy. As you know, this is the birthplace and home of many celebrated designers.
Romance is Easy – No matter your age or status, Italy is a haven for romance and somewhere that you will most definitely feel the love! As you can see, there are more than just a few reasons to live in Italy and in spite of popular belief, the cost of this privilege is surprisingly low. Believe it or not, the Italian language is also relatively easy to pick up and when it comes to climate, attractions and lifestyle in general, there are few places in Europe which can offer the same rewards as living la Dolce Vita!
There are more than just a few reasons to live in Italy and in spite of popular belief, the cost of this privilege is surprisingly low. Believe it or not, the Italian language is also relatively easy to pick up and when it comes to climate, attractions and lifestyle in general, there are few places in Europe which can offer the same rewards as living la Dolce Vita!