lo STIVALE (the BOOT)
The Apennine Peninsula of Italy has varied climates and geography. Flanked by the Alps and its neighbors of France, Switzerland, Austria, and Slovenia to the north, the remaining sides are surrounded by seas connected to the greater Mediterranean Sea.
Integral to the culture is a rich depth of history and architecture, along with an affinity for fresh quality ingredients in its cuisine and a relaxed lifestyle. Italian is the official language with several distinct regional dialects, although French is spoken in parts of the northwest, German in the northeast.
Departments and Regions of Italy
♦ Northwest Italy
Lombardy — Piedmont — Liguria — Acosta
♦ Northeast Italy
Trentino-Alto Adige — Veneto — Frulio-Venezia-Guilia — Emilia-Romagna
♦ Central Italy
Tuscany — Lazio — Umbria — Marche — Abruzzo
♦ Southern Italy
Campania — Molise — Apulia — Basilicata — Calabria