Italians are like Armenians with their traditions and customs. For example Italians kiss each other when they meet. It isn’t usually really a kiss, more a delicate brushing of the cheeks accompanied by kissing noises.
There are usually two kisses – first on the right cheek, then on the left. It’s also common in Italy for male relatives and close male friends to embrace each other.
For us and for Italians family is very important value. Their family solidarity is focused on extended family rather than the west's idea of "the nuclear family" of just a mom, dad and kids. Italians have frequent family gatherings and enjoy spending time with their family. Children are reared to remain close to the family upon adulthood and incorporate their future family into the larger network.
Family gatherings are frequent and often centered around food.
Italian cuisine has influenced food culture around the world and is viewed as a form of art by many. Wine, cheese and pasta are important part of Italian meals. Pasta comes in a wide range of shapes, widths and lengths, including penne, spaghetti, linguine, fusilli and lasagna.
No one area of Italy eats the same things as the next. Each region has its own spin on "Italian food," according to CNN. For example, most of the foods that people view as Italian, such as spaghetti and pizza, come from central Italy. In the North of Italy, fish, potatoes, rice, sausages, pork and different types of cheeses are the most common ingredients. Pasta dishes with tomatoes are popular, as are many kinds of stuffed pasta, polenta and risotto. In the South, dishes are dominated by tomatoes, either served fresh or cooked into sauce, and also includes capers, peppers, olives and olive oil, garlic, artichokes, eggplant and ricotta cheese.
Italians say ‘good appetite’ (buon appetito) before starting a meal and if you’re invited to dinner by an Italian family, and they offer you a glass of wine, you must wait until your host has made a toast (salute!) before drinking. Besides when you’re invited by them, you should take along a small present of flowers, pastries or chocolates. Gifts of foreign food or drink aren’t generally well received.
Besides food art Italy is famous with other kind of art too. Italy has given rise to a number of architectural styles, including classical Roman, Renaissance, Baroque and Neoclassical. Italy is home to some of the most famous structures in the world, including Coliseum and the Leaning Tower of Pisa.
The concept of a basilica — which was originally used to describe an open public court building and evolved to mean a Catholic pilgrimage site — was born in Italy.
Florence, Venice and Rome are home to many museums, but art can be viewed in churches and public buildings. Most notable is the ceiling of the Sistine Chapel of the Vatican, painted by Michelangelo sometime between 1508 and 1512.
Opera has its roots in Italy and many famous operas — including "Aida" and "La Traviata," both by Giuseppe Verdi, and "Pagliacci" by Ruggero Leoncavallo — were written in Italian and are still performed in the native language. More recently, Italian tenor Luciano Pavarotti made opera more accessible to the masses as part of the Three Tenors.
And so Italia is a country, which traditions become art and source of inspiration for many people.