Do you prefer Italy or France?

Old Sep 17th, 2012, 01:09 PM
  #101  
 
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Interesting, foodor, I did not know that. Thanks. And yes, when hub and I visited the older Greek museum, there were some rather annoyed docents particularly about the marbles and de Milo!

And I should have said above, it's easier to schlep water bottles to outside cafes than sloshing glasses of water.
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Old Sep 17th, 2012, 02:37 PM
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We did get charged for bread in Rome twice, once we just missed the charge entirely and the other time the card had been scanned before I saw it. (one of the offenders was Dal Toscana, which we hated and hope no one will bother to go to). We were not at extremely touristy places. While it is supposed to now be illegal, it is still done. (and it is very stale bread and often packaged bread sticks) . We also got fabulous bread for free at other places.

Have always gotten free tap water in Paris, no problem, but you do have to specify tap water or you will get bottled water.
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Old Sep 17th, 2012, 10:39 PM
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I should have phrased my post differently . I should not have ade it so personal, but I still stand by my opinion , that it is the height of ego centricity to assume everyone who works in a service job in France ( or Italy ) should speak english. And I really don't believe you when you say they "could" speak english but chose not to,, I have always found that those who could speak english always have tried. How did you KNOW they could speak english, remember, just because someone can say "hello" and a few other phrases does not mean they can speak the language.

Yes, tap water is free and easy to obtain in France.

And I do not know how often you have been to Paris, but I have been many times, and I have never seen an 8 euro bottle of water in a "simple restaurant" , perhaps your idea of simple is different then mine. Thats like saying all coffees in Paris cost 5 euros because you had one.

As for learning languages in school sorry it is not the same, you did very well, most don't , its mostly book work, so speaking skills can be poor. I know, I did well( good grades) with 5 years of french in school, but, I can barely speak it , I however read it much better. So perhaps many europeons are like me, they may be able to croak out a little english, but unless it is spoken regularily they do not feel they do well and refrain from trying because they don't want to sound confident.
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Old Sep 18th, 2012, 03:57 AM
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Just returned from Italy and I discovered a new thing. I gave up trying to order tap water in restaurants in Italy long ago, but twice on this trip I encountered something new. When asked "gas or no gas" and replying "no gas", we were presented with carafes of tap water -- just like in France, except that both times they were warm, not cold. And we were charged for them --1.50 euros for one, 2 euros for the other. So it's a new thing, apparently. Give them the tap water you used to refuse to serve, but now charge them for it.

But back to the original question -- I still find it so hard to choose. This Italy trip was the consistently best food ever, even compared to many trips to France. But overall, it's still a toss up which country I prefer.
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Old Mar 1st, 2013, 02:24 PM
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This is an interesting thread. Like so many of you, I'm really torn as well. These are my two favorite countries I've visited. I've been to France three times and Italy twice. I prefer Rome to Paris. I strongly prefer Florence over Rouen or Tours, the two mid-size French cities I've been to. I strongly prefer Italian food over French food, even though I really love French food. For my tastes, the food in Italy, especially in Rome, is beyond anything else I've had.

That being said, I strongly prefer French architecture and French castles to their Italian counterparts. And there is nothing in this world like a small French village that has been perfectly preserved with lush, green scenery like what we found on our last trip to the Pays d'Auge. I haven't been north of Bologna in Italy and from the pictures I've seen, it looks like I would enjoy the scenery more up there. But I have a strong feeling I wouldn't like the food as much in Northern Italy.

So I'm completely torn on where my next trip will be. I wish I had the time to visit both!
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Old Mar 1st, 2013, 04:23 PM
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Italy and it isn't even close. Both a have a lot sights, good food, etc. But what makes the differences is the Italians are all about enjoying the good things of life. The French take everything, food, culture, far too seriously.
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Old Mar 1st, 2013, 04:54 PM
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Well thats not completely true ImHornet, try entering a church in Rome in your shorts ,,you sure can in France but in Italy they take their religion far far more seriuosly..
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Old Mar 1st, 2013, 05:49 PM
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France.
That said, I agree with Imhornet the French take things far more seriously than the Italians, that's why they don't have a buffoon like Berlusconi running the country for 20 years.
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Old Mar 1st, 2013, 05:53 PM
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My vote is for Italy. Better food, beautiful countryside, wonderful people. France has many things to offer, but the people are nicer to Americans in Italy!
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Old Mar 1st, 2013, 06:04 PM
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Adding it up so far :
France 27, Italy 29, Can't decide/ 24
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Old Mar 19th, 2013, 10:22 AM
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After thinking more about this over the last few weeks, I'm changing my vote from undecided to France. I love to rank things, so I put together a quick ranking of European countries based on several different criteria that are interesting to me in the order they interest me. And this is strictly my opinion, but it would be interesting to get others' takes on these as well:

Scenery: 1. France, 2. Switzerland, 3. UK
Architecture Style: 1. France, 2. Italy, 3. Austria
Food: 1. Italy, 2. Spain, 3. France
Castles: 1. France, 2. UK, 3. Spain
Cathedrals: 1. France, 2. Italy, 3. UK
Museums-Painting: 1. Spain, 2. France, 3. Netherlands
Gardens: 1. France, 2. UK, 3. Italy
Music: 1. Germany, 2. Austria, 3. Russia
Literature: 1. Russia, 2. UK, 3. France
Museums-Sculpture: 1. Italy, 2. France, 3. ?
Antiquity Sites: 1. Italy, 2. France, 3. Spain
Friendly People: 1. Ireland, 2. Italy, 3. Spain

There are a ton of other categories you could add that are important to many people but don't at all interest me, like beaches. But it would be interesting for those that are interested to add other categories and rank those as well.
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Old Mar 19th, 2013, 10:33 AM
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danon--why do you say Italy for men and France for women? My spouse, who is of Italian heritage, absolutely hates Italian men.

I think Italian women are more beautiful, but French women are more stylish, and are more attractive longer in life. You're right about Italian shoes, though.

I, too, think this not so easy, but I'll vote for Italy.
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Old Mar 20th, 2013, 01:53 PM
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"Well thats not completely true ImHornet, try entering a church in Rome in your shorts ,,you sure can in France but in Italy they take their religion far far more seriuosly."

You are right there. Italy is one of the last places in Europe where religion is big deal. We'll, no place is perfect.
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Old Jun 20th, 2013, 09:33 AM
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Italy.


Italy - Football, Culture, Food (By far) Girls, beaches, cars, people's personalities.

Although Italy is the most disorganised country I've ever been to, it's still good. Everywhere you go, whether it be on a ferry or a bus, at a restaurant or a hotel, everything seems to be disorganised and slow. However if you look for the beaches in Carloforte (Isola di San Pietro) Santa Teresa di Gallura, Capo Malfatano, Cagliari etc then you'll see how nice it is. I myself prefer the tomato based dishes.

France is a nice country, but the Parisians are very rude and I just don't prefer it in all honesty.
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Old Jun 20th, 2013, 09:53 AM
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I'll add my vote for Italy. One of my very charming male Italian friends is in my company right now, and I have to say that Italian men are much preferred IMO. I also prefer Italian food over French. Not sure what I'll be eating in Paris, come July 9th. I ended up in the hospital with antiphylactic (SP) shock the last time I was there, from an allergic reaction to food. Must be careful!! I never have problems with pasta.
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Old Jun 20th, 2013, 10:20 AM
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Having been eight times to both France and Italy they are both wonderful places to visit.

Each country is different and we adjust to the food or people.

We visit France again in 2015, with family at this villa. www.niceholidayvilla.com

Love the French. Love the Italians.
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