Well into the nineteenth century, the important Austrian statesman Klemens von Metternich called Italy no more than a mere geographical expression. Indeed, Italy is a very modern country in terms of political unity, and its 20 regions did not unite under a central government until 1870.

It does not matter. This has not prevented conquerors, scholars, artists, saints and curious travelers from being attracted to the region for centuries.

From ancient times they traveled to Italy, sometimes even risking their lives through turbulent seas and stormy mountains. Some people were fascinated, like the British writer E. M. Forster, who wrote that the Italians were even more wonderful than their land.

Discover Italy.

Others were attracted by artistic treasures, ranging from the Greek ruins of Sicily to the legacy of geniuses such as Leonardo da Vinci or Michelangelo. Others were attracted to its landscapes: hills dotted with cypresses, coves, cut-off peaks, paths on precipices, beaches and picturesque villages.Abruzzo - Maiella: mountains, hermitages, and D'Annunzio.

North.


Aosta Valley.
Emilia Romagna.
Friuli Venezia Giulia.
Liguria.
Lombardy.
Piedmont.
Trentino Alto Adige.
Veneto.
Read also: Italian biodiversity, the reasons for biological wealth and the causes of its reduction.

Center.

Lazio.
The Marches.
Tuscany.
Umbria.
Discover Italia: off the beaten path, wine and food itineraries and naturalistic routes.Click to Tweet

South.

Abruzzo.
Apulia.
Basilicata.
Calabria.
Campania.
Molise.




Islands.

Sardinia.
Sicily.
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Italy counts 22 national parks covering an overall surface of 1 million ha, corresponding to 5% of national territory. Furthermore, 50 Italian sites have been recognized as internationally relevant wetlands worth to be included in the Ramsar Convention on Wetlands' list. Areas included in Nature 2000 Network cover 20.5% of the national surface.

The Italian forests are very important for the landscape, the biodiversity, the balance of the environment, and for the economy. It occupies about 10 millions of hectares (30% of national area) and represents 5% of total European forested area. This forested area was gradually increased, at a rate of about 100,000 hectares per year, in the period 2000-2005 through a progressive change from agriculture land use form.


Biodiversity Italy, Biodiversity in numbers.

Around the Italian peninsula 23 protected marine areas and 2 marine parks safeguard about 200432 ha of sea and more than 700 km of coastline.

Vulnerabilities - Marine, estuarine and intertidal biodiversity.


The combined action of anthropic effects and climate change negatively affects the entire ecosystem, causing seashore regression and decrease of marine life.


Vulnerabilities - Freshwater ecosystems.

Italian biodiversity, the reasons for biological wealth and the causes of its reduction.Click to Tweet

Freshwater ecosystems are expected to experience alterations, like:

phenology changes, northward movements and development of invasive alien species, leading to reduced species richness, which could represent a special vulnerability in Alpine freshwater ecosystems;

salt water intrusion into coastal fresh-water beds and loss of wetlands, causing severe imbalances in the wetlands of the coastal zone with changes in salinity and hence in the related biotic communities.

The Mediterranean ecohydrology is vulnerable to climate change, and can affect flora and fauna of the region. In arid and semi-arid parts of the region, the biggest danger facing the lakes is the expected decrease in water input resulting from increasing evapotranspiration with increasing temperature and decreasing precipitation. This process can lead to conversion of existing freshwater to saltwater.

Glacier-fed rivers.


As a result of the apparent `low' biodiversity, and minimal knowledge regarding the distribution of alpine aquatic species, glacier-fed rivers have received negligible attention from conservationists (10). The rapid shrinking of glaciers results in a reduction in glacial meltwater contribution to river flow in many glacierized catchments. These changes potentially affect the biodiversity of specialized glacier-fed river communities.

Research has shown that 11–38% of the regional species pools in study regions in Ecuador, the Alps and Alaska, including endemics, can be expected to be lost following complete disappearance of glaciers in a catchment, and steady shrinkage is likely to reduce local richness at downstream reaches where glacial cover in the catchment is less than 5–30. Extinction will probably greatly exceed the few known endemic species in glacier-fed rivers.

Read also: Italy is considered the birthplace of Western civilization and a cultural superpower.

Vulnerabilities - Terrestrial biodiversity.


The Paris Agreement of December 2015 aims to maintain the global average warming well below 2°C above the preindustrial level. Ecosystem variability during the past 10,000 years was reconstructed from pollen analysis. Only a 1.5°C warming scenario permits Mediterranean land ecosystems to remain within this Holocene variability. At or above 2°C of warming, climatic change will generate land ecosystem changes that are unmatched in the Holocene.





In fact, regional temperatures in the Mediterranean basin are now ~1.3°C higher than during 1880-1920, compared with an increase of ~0.85°C worldwide. Climate model projections indicate that the projected warming in the Mediterranean basin this century continues to exceed the global trend. Without ambitious mitigation policies anthropogenic climate change will likely alter ecosystems in the Mediterranean this century in a way that is without precedent during the past 10,000 years. The highly ambitious low-end scenario of climate change (the so-called RCP2.6 scenario) seems to be the only possible pathway toward more limited impacts. Under a high-end scenario of climate change (the RCP8.5 scenario), all of southern Spain turns into desert, deciduous forests invade most of the mountains, and Mediterranean vegetation replaces most of the deciduous forests in a large part of the Mediterranean basin.



In addition to climate change, other human impacts affect ecosystems, such as land-use change, urbanization, and soil degradation. Many of these effects are likely to become even stronger in the future because of the expanding human population and economic activity. Without ambitious climate targets, the potential for future managed or unmanaged ecosystems to host biodiversity or deliver services to society is likely to be greatly reduced by climate change and direct local effects (23).

Climate change projections suggest that the share of stable plant species in 2100, compared with 1990, might range between 60-80% in northern Italy and Apennines, 20-40% in the Mediterranean area, and 40-60% in southern Italy.

Vulnerabilities - Alpine regions and mountain ecosystems.


Mountain ecosystems are particularly vulnerable to climate change. The following major impacts are expected:

exceptional warming in Alpine zones, especially during summer and at high altitudes, and particularly for western Alps;

increasing intensity and frequency of precipitation events (rainfall) in winter and decreasing in summer;

possible significant changes in the structure of mountain plant communities induced by a 1-2 °C temperature increase;

shift of plant and animal species towards higher elevations - the upward and northward movements of ecosystems induced by temperature increase could involve a potential increase in animal and plant species richness in the Alps, assuming that movements through habitats are possible; however, such shifts generally put mountain flora and fauna at high risk of extinction (8);

glaciers retreat and permafrost reduction - small glaciers are expected to disappear, while larger ones are projected to suffer a volume reduction between 30% and 70% by 2050; the European Alps could lose about 80% of their average ice cover for the period 1971–1990 against a summer air temperatures increase of 3°C, involving nival ecosystem loss.

Extinction debt of high-mountain plants.


The extremes of possible climate-change-driven habitat range size reductions are commonly based on two assumptions: either species instantaneously adapt their ranges to any change in the distribution of suitable sites (`unlimited dispersal' scenario), or they are unable to move beyond the initially occupied sites (`no dispersal' scenario). In addition to these static, niche-based model predictions, a so-called hybrid model was used that couples niche-based projections of geographical habitat shifts with mechanistic simulations of local demography and seed dispersal (based on regional circulation model projections and the A1B climate change scenario).

Averaged across 150 species in the Alps, the hybrid model simulations indicate that by the end of the twenty-first century these high mountain plants will have lost 44-50% of their present alpine habitat ranges under high and low values of demographic and dispersal parameters, respectively.

The hybrid model indicates that the opposing effects of delayed local population extinctions and lagged migration rates will result in less severe twenty-first-century range reductions of alpine plants than expected from static, niche-based model predictions. However, these apparently `optimistic' forecasts include a large proportion of remnant populations under already unsuitable climatic conditions . The persistence of such remnant populations creates an extinction debt that will have to be paid later unless species manage to adapt phenotypically or genetically to the changing climate  and to the likely associated alterations in their biotic environments .

Most importantly, the hybrid model results consistently caution against drawing overoptimistic conclusions from relatively modest range contractions observed during the coming decades, as these are likely to mask more severe longer-term warming effects on mountain plant distribution (.


Benefits from climate change.


An opposite trend caused by the lengthening of the growing period is recorded in central-northern Italy where a forest expansion is observed. Moreover, even if no data regarding forest ecosystem productivity are available, the negative effects determined by deterioration, and the positive effects caused by the lengthening of the growing period can be observed .

Adaptation strategies.


The adaptation capacity of natural systems to climate change will have to be strengthened through the adoption of adaptation measures promoting.



Labels.


BIODIVERSITY.
The Italian forests are very important for the landscape, the biodiversity, the balance of the environment, and for the economy. It occupies about 10 millions of hectares (30% of national area) and represents 5% of total European forested area. This forested area was gradually increased, at a rate of about 100,000 hectares per year, in the period 2000-2005 through a progressive change from agriculture land use form.
Areas included in Nature 2000 Network cover 20.5% of the national surface.

FAUNA.

The Sanctuary includes marine areas within both inland waters and territorial waters (twelve mile zone) of France, Italy and the Principality of Monaco. It also includes the neighbouring high seas. The Italian regions involved are: Liguria, Sardinia and Tuscany.
The portion of basin between Liguria and Provence have been known since the ancient time to be the home for many species of whales and other marine fauna. The protected area accounts for about 100.000 km2.



To find a treasure must be sought if you want to see the Natural Reserve of Lake Preola and Gorghi Tondi, you need to bring. When you least expect it, nestled in a valley that subtracts from prying eyes, here it looks like: a series of small lakes which together cover an area of ​​335 hectares from Mazara del Vallo goes towards Tower Granitola remaining parallel to the coast for about 1 km.
Coming from Mazara, you'll see the first lake Murana, unfortunately dry for a time, and only after the lake Preola, the largest, and the three lakes of circular form, the so-called eddies (High, Medium and Low) surrounded by a dense marsh vegetation typical of the Mediterranean coastal ponds, slightly salty, and on the southern slope topped by limestone ridges partly covered by Mediterranean scrub.




Lake Maggiore is a large lake located on the south side of the Alps. It is the second largest lake in Italy and largest lake of the canton of Ticino, Switzerland. Lake Maggiore is the most westerly of the three great prealpine lakes of Italy, it extends for about 70 km between Locarno and Arona. The climate is mild in both summer and winter, producing Mediterranean vegetation, with beautiful gardens growing rare and exotic plants. 



The Dolomites are a mountain range located in north-eastern Italy. It is a part of Southern Limestone Alps and extends from the River Adige in the west to the Piave Valley (Pieve di Cadore) in the east. The northern and southern borders are defined by the Puster Valley and the Sugana Valley (Val Sugana). The Dolomites are nearly equally shared between the provinces of Belluno, South Tyrol and Trentino.


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Italy is considered the birthplace of Western civilization and a cultural superpower. Italy has been the starting point of phenomena of international impact such as the Magna Graecia, the Roman Empire, the Roman Catholic Church, the Renaissance, the Risorgimento and the European integration. During its history, the nation gave birth to an enormous number of notable people.

Both the internal and external faces of Western culture were born on the Italian peninsula, whether one looks at the history of the Christian faith, civil institutions (such as the Senate), philosophy, law, art, science, or social customs and culture.

Italy was home to many well-known and influential civilizations, including the Etruscans, Samnites and the Romans, while also hosting colonies from important foreign civilizations like the Phoenicians and Greeks, whose influence and culture had a large impact through the peninsula.


Italian Culture: Facts, Customs & Traditions.

Etruscan and Samnite cultures flourished in Italy before the emergence of the Roman Republic, which conquered and incorporated them. Phoenicians and Greeks established settlements in Italy beginning several centuries before the birth of Christ, and the Greek settlements in particular developed into thriving classical civilizations.

The Greek ruins in southern Italy are perhaps the most spectacular and best preserved anywhere.

For more than 2,000 years Italy experienced migrations, invasions and was divided into many independent states until 1861 when it became a nation-state. Due to this comparatively late unification, and the historical autonomy of the regions that comprise the Italian peninsula, many traditions and customs that are now recognized as distinctly Italian can be identified by their regions of origin.

Despite the political and social isolation of these regions, Italy's contributions to the cultural and historical heritage of Europe and the world remain immense.
Read also: Basilica of Santa Maria Novella, chronologically it is the first great basilica in Florence.

The famous elements of Italian culture.

The famous elements of Italian culture are its art, music, style, and iconic food. Italy was the birthplace of opera, and for generations the language of opera was Italian, irrespective of the nationality of the composer.

Popular tastes in drama in Italy have long favored comedy; the improvisational style known as the Commedia dell'arte began in Italy in the mid-16th century and is still performed today. Before being exported to France, the famous Ballet dance genre also originated in Italy.

The country boasts several world-famous cities. 

Rome was the ancient capital of the Roman Empire and seat of the Pope of the Catholic Church. Florence was the heart of the Renaissance, a period of great achievements in the arts at the end of the Middle Ages.
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Other important cities include Turin, which used to be the capital of Italy, and is now one of the world's great centers of automobile engineering.

Milan is the industrial, financial and fashion capital of Italy. Venice, with its intricate canal system, attracts tourists from all over the world especially during the Venetian Carnival and the Biennale.

Italy is home to the greatest number of UNESCO World Heritage Sites to date,and according to one estimate the country is home to half the world's great art treasures.

Overall, the nation has an estimated 100,000 monuments of any sort (churches, cathedrals, archaeological sites, houses and statues.


Labels.

ART & CULTURE.
So what have Leonardo and Shakespeare got that other Renaissance artists and writers have not? Why don’t we get similarly excited about Raphael or Edmund Spenser? The answer is that they are artists of the people. Neither went to university; both were in many ways self-taught, their capacious minds not limited by the elitist culture of Renaissance humanism. They embraced popular culture, popular ways of thought, and that speaks to our democratic age.
The Renaissance was an intellectual revolution kickstarted by scholars rediscovering the classic texts of ancient Greece and Rome. The wisdom of these pagan authors gave a licence to explore the human condition in a new and richer way. 

BOTANICAL GARDENS.
The Royal Palace of Caserta is a former royal residence in Caserta, southern Italy, constructed for the Bourbon kings of Naples. It is one of the largest palaces erected in Europe during the 18th century. In 1997, the palace was designated a UNESCO World Heritage Site. Its nomination described it as "the swan song of the spectacular art of the Baroque, from which it adopted all the features needed to create the illusions of multidirectional space".

CASTLES.
The Castle De Cesaris of Spoltore (Abruzzo) is an ancient building, whose foundation is shrouded in mystery. It is now a private residence.
It consists of a courtyard, a stable for twelve horses, the cellar, the barn and the dungeons.
Some properties are due to the restructuring of the '500 and '700 presuppose an existing structure, probably related to the fortress on top of the hill on which the village stands. 


Santa Maria Novella is a church in Florence, Italy, situated just across from the main railway station which shares its name. Chronologically, it is the first great basilica in Florence, and is the city's principal Dominican church. 
The church, the adjoining cloister, and chapterhouse contain a store of art treasures and funerary monuments. Especially famous are frescoes by masters of Gothic and early Renaissance. 
They were financed through the generosity of the most important Florentine families, who ensured themselves of funerary chapels on consecrated ground.

In the heart of Apulia more beautiful, suspended between the blue Adriatic and the green hills of olive trees.
Ostuni the White City famous in the world, is home to the "White City Resort" incomparable setting for relaxation, entertainment and quality restaurants.
Words are a pretext to peek at the photos, which are an excuse to talk of Ostuni. Because of Ostuni the author might say, the White City.
Under the faces, in the porticoes, in the shadow of clothes hanging. 

Venice is a city in northeastern Italy sited on a group of 118 small islands separated by canals and linked by bridges.
It is located in the marshy Venetian Lagoon which stretches along the shoreline, between the mouths of the Po and the Piave Rivers.
Venice is renowned for the beauty of its setting, its architecture and its artworks. The city in its entirety is listed as a World Heritage Site, along with its lagoon.



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Campania (Italian pronunciation is a region in Southern Italy.

The region at the end of 2014 had a population of around 5,869,000 people, making it the third-most-populous region of Italy; its total area of 13,590 km2 (5,247 sq mi) makes it the most densely populated region in the country.

Located on the Italian Peninsula, with the Mediterranean Sea to the west, it includes the small Phlegraean Islands and Capri for administration as part of the region.
Campania-PositanodiGiorno

Inside Campania.

Campania was colonised by Ancient Greeks and was part of Magna Græcia. During the Roman era, the area maintained a Greco-Roman culture.

Campania is rich in culture.

The capital city of Campania is Naples. Campania is rich in culture, especially in regard to gastronomy, music, architecture, archeological and ancient sites such as Pompeii, Herculaneum, Paestum and Velia. The name of Campania itself is derived from Latin, as the Romans knew the region as Campania felix, which translates into English as "fertile countryside".

Amalfi Coast, Mount Vesuvius and the island of Capri.

The rich natural sights of Campania make it highly important in the tourism industry, especially along the Amalfi Coast, Mount Vesuvius and the island of Capri.





Read also: Procida archaic beauty always wonderfully the same.

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The Royal Palace of Caserta is a former royal residence in Caserta, southern Italy, constructed for the Bourbon kings of Naples.

 It is one of the largest palaces erected in Europe during the 18th century. In 1997, the palace was designated a UNESCO World Heritage Site.

Its nomination described it as "the swan song of the spectacular art of the Baroque, from which it adopted all the features needed to create the illusions of multidirectional space".

In terms of volume, the Royal Palace of Caserta is the largest royal residence in the world with over 2 million m³ and covering an area of about 235,000 m².

Main façade of the palace.

The Royal Palace of Caserta.

The garden, a typical example of the baroque extension of formal vistas, stretches for 120 ha, partly on hilly terrain. It is also inspired by the park of Versailles. The park starts from the back façade of the palace, flanking a long alley with artificial fountains and cascades.
Grand Staircase of Honour.

Botanical Garden.

There is a botanical garden, called "The English Garden", in the upper part designed in the 1780s by Carlo Vanvitelli and the German-born botanist, nurseryman, plantsman-designer, John Graefer, trained in London and recommended to Sir William Hamilton by Sir Joseph Banks. It is an early Continental example of an "English garden" in the svelte naturalistic taste of Capability Brown.
The throne room.



The Palace.

The palace was listed as a world heritage site in 1997. According to the rationale, the palace, "whilst cast in the same mould as other 18th century royal establishments, is exceptional for the broad sweep of its design, incorporating not only an imposing palace and park, but also much of the surrounding natural landscape and an ambitious new town laid out according to the urban planning precepts of its time."
The Diana and Actaeon Fountain at the feet of the Grand Cascade.
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Others Images.

Caserta_jardín
Caserta-Troonzaal
Caserta_-_Palatine_Chapel Caserta_Fuente_de_Eolo

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Manarola is a small town, a frazione of the comune (municipality) of Riomaggiore, in the province of La Spezia, Liguria, northern Italy. It is the second smallest of the famous Cinque Terre towns frequented by tourists.

The large wheel which can be at the origine of the name of the village.

Manarola may be the oldest of the towns in the Cinque Terre, with the cornerstone of the church, San Lorenzo, dating from 1338. The local dialect is Manarolese, which is marginally different from the dialects in the nearby area.

The name "Manarola" is probably a dialectical evolution of the Latin, "magna rota". In the Manarolese dialect this was changed to "magna roea" which means "large wheel", in reference to the mill wheel in the town.


Manarola's primary industries have traditionally been fishing and wine-making. The local wine, called Sciacchetrà, is especially renowned; references from Roman writings mention the high quality of the wine produced in the region. In recent years, Manarola and its neighboring towns have become popular tourist destinations, particularly in the summer months.


Tourist attractions in the region include a famous walking trail between Manarola and Riomaggiore (called Via dell'Amore, "Love's Trail") and hiking trails in the hills and vineyards above the town. Manarola is one of the five villages of the Cinque Terre.


Mostly all of the houses are bright and colourful. Manarola was celebrated in paintings by Antonio Discovolo (1874-1956).





Manarola (CinqueTerre, Liguria, Italy)

CinqueTerre, Liguria (Italy)

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