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Old 10-18-2011, 04:14 AM
 
Location: on an island
13,382 posts, read 40,911,924 times
Reputation: 13245

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Quote:
Originally Posted by Charles in PGI View Post
Croatia will be a "cliché" soon.
If it isn't already. But I (who did not make it there until '06) loved it.
Turkey is similar. Both are EU candidates.

I don't think of Italy when I think of Europe. I'm not sure what I think of, other than my kids, who both live there. But I understand that people seek hospitality, warmth, interesting scenery and delicious food, and Italy has all that.

Quote:
Same as London, Paris, Southern France, Amsterdam, Madrid, Berlin, Dublin, Athens, Santorini, etc. The OP must have forgotten about other "cliché" destinations in the world.
Yes. And as you agreed with Mr. Rational, clichés develop for reason.
There is only one Venice, only one Berlin Wall, and there is no other place where you can find the treasures in the Prado.

Still, some people strive to find that unbeaten path and/or be a part of the vanguard at the frontier. That way they (supposedly) hang out with locals, have a more "authentic" experience, and do not rub shoulders so much with other tourists. To some degree, I can understand this, I do not seek a sanitized Disney experience. But the posturing can be funny: I'm sure that Burgler is right in that some folks do not want to appear predictable.

On a backpacking forum I go to, there was once an older guy from Fodor's who hung out there, trying to detect the next trendy backpacking spot.
Backpackers often tend to be just as much of a herd as the stereotypical loud, overfed tourist.
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Old 10-18-2011, 10:02 AM
 
229 posts, read 170,374 times
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So much history there whether its religiously, politically, or fine arts. That and so much beautiful architecture. Italy is right up there with France if I ever get the chance to go to Europe.
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Old 10-18-2011, 10:12 AM
 
Location: Louisiana and Pennsylvania
2,755 posts, read 5,321,126 times
Reputation: 2685
Quote:
Originally Posted by destroycreate View Post
There's so much more to Europe than just Italy...it almost seems like the cliche American tourist destination.

Scandinavia, Eastern Europe, Greece, etc., have so much to see as well. Does anybody else also think Italy is uber predictable?
My wife and I had a great trip to Italy and intend to return. Many, including myself enjoy the Italian culture, and it being a so-called "cliche" tourist destination has nothing to do with that. I saw or encountered nothing predicatable. Just some beautiful scenery, architechture and friendly people. Additionally, I have ancestral ties there.

We also visited France and Spain and I like the fact that Italy is in a Location that makes travel to both countries accessible. We do intend to visit Northern and Eastern Europe at some point.
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Old 10-18-2011, 10:22 AM
 
Location: The western periphery of Terra Australis
24,683 posts, read 45,361,353 times
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France is the most visited European nation, though I'm not sure of the stats for American visitor's. It seems places like Paris or London and the UK are just as 'cliched' as Italy. Personally if I had to choose one country to visit in Europe it would be Italy because it has the history, culture.etc, nothing to do with what other's think is popular.
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Old 10-18-2011, 11:49 AM
 
Location: on an island
13,382 posts, read 40,911,924 times
Reputation: 13245
Quote:
Originally Posted by Trimac20 View Post
France is the most visited European nation, though I'm not sure of the stats for American visitor's. It seems places like Paris or London and the UK are just as 'cliched' as Italy. Personally if I had to choose one country to visit in Europe it would be Italy because it has the history, culture.etc, nothing to do with what other's think is popular.
The thing about Italian history is the way, because of the Romans and then later the traders, it is all over Europe (and other places, including north Africa.)
The Pont du Gard in France, the winged lion of Venice's San Marco in Croatia--those guys really got around.
But I understand how a person would want to get the full historical spectrum in Italy itself. We have visited several times.
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Old 10-18-2011, 12:39 PM
 
Location: California Mountains
1,448 posts, read 2,587,252 times
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We lived in Central Italy for 7 years (April 2000 - Nov 2007). Bought a house, fixed it up, received residency permits, paid in to national health care, participated in local activities, joined civic clubs, hiked mountains with regional and national hiking clubs, etc. We had seen and learned a lot, but when comparing ourselves with a friend who lives in CT, we knew very little. She has been taking trips to Italy twice a year for 41 years. In her early 80s now, still she rents a car with each trip to explore the country, and still she says there is so much she has yet to see.

Another friend, a cyclist who lives in WA, also in his 80s, has been to Italy at least three dozens times, so often that he brought his favourite bicycle over many years ago and stored it with a local so he could use it during the visits.

I doubt the word cliché would apply to those two friends of mine, who first visited Italy decades before it became popular, and the reason they continue to return is that Italy is no longer a travel destination but a country of their hearts.
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Old 10-18-2011, 12:50 PM
 
Location: New Hampshire
2,257 posts, read 6,969,738 times
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I think one of the main reasons why Italy is so heavily visited by Americans is because it has several large, cosmopolitan cities in close proximity to each other (Venice, Milan, Florence, Rome), all of which have an exceptional amount of historical interest. Large cities are easier for American tourists to visit and navigate, particularly since they are less likely to brave driving on Italian roads.

In my opinion, the touristiness of these major cities in northern Italy is a huge turn-off. It's too bad that American visitors rarely get a chance to go off the beaten path, but I understand the desire to see those cities when the opportunity arises.

Let's not forget that Italy is also generally cheaper than France, Germany, the UK and northern Europe, while not associated with the archaic stigma of a "developing" eastern Europe.
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Old 10-18-2011, 04:05 PM
 
Location: SW France
14,247 posts, read 14,134,918 times
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Okay, so the data is a few years old but it shows that Italy is not the first or even the second primary destination in Europe for American tourists;

Countries American Visit Most
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Old 10-18-2011, 04:10 PM
 
Location: on an island
13,382 posts, read 40,911,924 times
Reputation: 13245
Quote:
Originally Posted by Charles in PGI View Post
We lived in Central Italy for 7 years (April 2000 - Nov 2007).
I doubt the word cliché would apply to those two friends of mine, who first visited Italy decades before it became popular, and the reason they continue to return is that Italy is no longer a travel destination but a country of their hearts.
That's really cool that you lived there for awhile. My aunt and uncle did the same thing in the 60's, and their kids grew up fluent in Italian but later lost it.

Italy has been a popular travel destination for many, many years.

In those Grand Tour days it was the wealthier class who took such trips, and after deregulation of the airlines fares became cheaper and the world became smaller.

Verseau, very good point about the large cities in close proximity. The touristiness has never turned me off that much, partly because I tend to wake up early and walk around when it is much quieter, also because we usually rented a car and were able to get off the beaten path. If I ever began to feel grouchy about a crowd of people, I would remind myself that I was one of them.

I understand how Italy can resonate with people, the language itself is beautiful and there is much to love about the country. Fresh mozzarella bufala alone is enough to tempt me.
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Old 10-18-2011, 04:27 PM
 
Location: Mammoth Lakes, CA
3,160 posts, read 6,938,188 times
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I visit Europe every year and rarely return to Italy. The only part of Italy I find beautiful are the Dolomites, in the north. I find Bavaria, Austria and Switzerland FAR more beautiful than Italy.

I disagree that most Americans only want to visit Italy if they travel to Europe. I've found most Americans go to the UK because English is spoken there. American tourists are generally pretty obnoxious and intolerant.
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