Italy is a country that needs no introductions. Its ancient but lucrative history, incredible landscapes, world-renowned cuisine, and vibrant culture personifies the essence of “La Dolce Vita” (the sweet life).

Italians (like their European neighbors) value leisure time and work-life balance. Do you know some of the best Italian hobbies? Care to find out?

Italy at a Glance

Italy, the peninsular distinguished for its boot-shaped, shares a border with four countries and two territories (France, Switzerland, Austria, Slovenia, San Marino, and Vatican City). Italy has a few hundred islands, including the famous Sardinia and Sicily.

Italians treasure their free time and frequently occupy it with hobbies that cater to creativity, relaxation, and specifically; social connection. Here are some of the most beloved Italian hobbies.

Italy’s Flavorful Cuisine: Cooking and Gastronomy

Italian cuisine

Italians consider cooking more than a necessity; more like a cultural ritual and an art form. An Italian survey (from Coldiretti, Italy´s top farmer’s association) revealed that 82% of Italians cook at home regularly, which is no surprise considering Italy’s fantastic food culture passed on from generations.

Is there anyone on the planet who has never enjoyed a slice of pizza or two? Italy is known for its pasta (spaghetti, tortellini), cheeses (formaggio-parmesan and mozzarella), truffles, soups (minestrone), and of course, desserts like tiramisu.

Most Italians appreciate home-cooked meals with fresh, high-quality ingredients. The Italian diet is a testament to the longevity of the Italians. Families usually cook together, fostering and deepening the family bond.

Italian cooking also emphasizes regional diversity and uniqueness. Each region has its specialties. Northerners enjoy light dishes, and Southerners enjoy Mediterranean flavors. Italians consider cooking a venue to express their love and hospitality, a big part of Italian social life.

Wine tasting

 Italy is home to some of the best-tasting wines. Some Italians make the most out of wine-tasting tours. Popular regions for wine-tasting tours are Tuscany (home of Chianti), Alba near Piedmont (Barolo), Veneto (iconic sparkling wine, prosecco), Sicily (Nero d’ Avola, Umbria and Puglia (also known for its olive groves).

Almost 40% of Italians participate in wine-related activities (professional wine courses or casual tastings). Wine is a fundamental part of the Italian culture. Each region specializes in distinctive varieties that make up the Italian wine culture.

Crafting Exceptional Espresso

Some Italians relish the rich aroma and distinctive taste of brewed espresso. Besides its delicious taste, expresso can help elevate your mood, awaken your senses, help increase your concentration, and more. La Pavoni, Gaggia, and Faema help make espresso more spectacular. These machines are common staples in many homes.

Italy’s Fitness Creed

Fitness is dear to the hearts of many, not only in Italy but in Europe. Being active and spending extensive time outdoors for fresh air is beneficial to maintaining wellness. From cycling to soccer, Italians find many ways to engage to stay fit, healthy, and vibrant.

Soccer: Italy’s National Pastime

Football is a national treasure in Italy. It is more than just a sport it is a fabric of Italian society. Italy won the World Cup four times (1934, 1938, 1982, and 2006) and the European Championships twice (1968 and 2020). Soccer generates substantial revenue for the country.

Italy offers several local soccer teams for adults and soccer camps for youths. The goal is to encourage widespread participation, especially in youth, to sustain the sport’s popularity. It’s incredible how this sport has such an influence outside the field, pouring into inspiring art, music, and even politics.


What better way to explore and appreciate Italy’s famous pristine landscape than by cycling? Scenic routes make cycling a beloved activity. Some of the best cycling routes are

  • in the Dolomites (magnificent mountain views),
  • Sicily (stunning coastal views),
  • Veneto (lovely lake views),
  • and Tuscany (breathtaking rolling hills and more).

Hiking Enjoying Various landscapes

Another way to enjoy Italy’s scenic beauty is hiking. Italians love the outdoors, and as beautiful as Italy is, who can blame them? Hiking is an excellent way to destress, enjoy nature’s beauty, discover new and exciting places, and even meet new people on longer group hikes.

Some memorable hikes are along the Italian Riviera to enjoy the lovely landscape, along the Mediterranean Sea are fantastic for ocean lovers to stare at and admire the deep blue sea, or for those who delight in the view of olives, lemon, and grapes vineyards.

Skiing & Snowboarding: Embracing the beauty of the Northern Regions

Skiing and snowboarding are popular ways to stay in shape, enjoy the outdoors and fresh air, and have fun. Italy’s Alps and Dolomites are excellent for most winter sports.

Boating/Sailing Discovering Italy’s Exquisite Coastline

What better way to explore Italy’s spectacular views than boating/sailing? Tuscany, the Italian Riviera, Sicily, and Sardinia are beloved boating sites.

Fashion Expressing Italian Style and Trends

Italy is home to the world’s leading fashion houses and schools. Many Italians place a high value on stylish looks. Italians dress to impress. From the choice of fabric, fashion design, sewing, and tailoring, many Italians love expressing themselves and enriching their creativity through fashion.


Gardening: Cultivating Beauty

Italy is blessed with a Mediterranean climate that allows a vast array of plants, fragrant herbs, and vibrant flowers to grow and thrive. Gardening is beloved in Italy, with more than 36% of Italians engaging in it regularly.

Gardening is a way to emphasize the importance of nature in their daily lives for example, the lush gardens of Tuscany are a testimony to that.

Other Interesting Hobbies

Italy has a thriving motorcycling culture and incredible manufacturers like Ducati, Aprilia, and Guzzi. Traveling, engaging in theater and performing arts (opera), photography, painting and art, music, learning to play musical instruments, dancing, and reading are all beloved hobbies.

Many Italians engage in learning new languages approximately 62% of Italians think learning another language is necessary, especially English. Other popular languages Italians learn are French, Spanish, and German.


These popular hobbies offer a peek into Italy’s soul, which reveals a culture that appreciates community, cherishes tradition, and embraces the simple pleasures of life.

From creating delicious homemade meals and desserts to being active and enjoying the great outdoors, Italians use hobbies to immerse themselves in passions with a tendency to enrich and fulfill their lives.


1) What is ‘La Dolce Vita’?

“La Dolce Vita” means “the sweet life” and refers to the Italian way of enjoying life through simple pleasures and passionate hobbies.

2) Why do Italians place a strong emphasis on cooking and family time?

For many Italians, cooking is a way to express love, preserve traditions, and unite families.

3) Why is soccer so significant in Italy?

Soccer encourages a community spirit and regional pride. It is a beloved sport enjoyed by millions across the country.

What about you? Share your favorite hobbies with us.

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