You have not truly experienced the Christmas spirit until you have gone to the Christmas Markets in Italy’s northern region of Trentino Alto Adige. From November 22nd through January 6th, the main plazas of towns like Merano, Brunico, Bolzano, Trento and many others, come alive with the true charm of the holiday season.
Travel to the Northern part of the Tuscan coast and you will find a beautiful town called Viareggio. As it sits on the coast, this charming seaside town began as a medieval fishing village, and later became known for its shipbuilding. One of the main attractions of Viareggio occurs during Carnival, which is the period of fun and feasting before Lent.
Italians have a knack for celebrating traditions with festive meals and, as the year comes to a close, there is none so delicious as Cotechino with Lentils on New Year’s Eve.The tradition behind eating a hearty meal of Cotechino with Lentils on New Year’s Eve is based upon an old Italian custom. Since Lentils are somewhat flat like coins, the idea is that if, at the stroke of midnight, you start the New Year by eating lentils, it will bring you fortune. The more lentils you eat, the richer you will be.