Little country, big world: San Marino
Today, we again have the pleasure to talk about a little country, big world: San Marino.
Perched high on steep hills, surrounded by the proud Apennine Mountains, at the heart of Italy, yet independent of it, the Most Serene Republic of San Marino is one of the smallest countries in the world and one of the most interesting. San Marino claims to be the oldest surviving sovereign country in the world, its original foundation having been recorded in the year 301. Nevertheless, in more recent times, San Marino was recognized by the Papacy as an independent state in 1631.
Geographically speaking, as we have explained, San Marino is an enclave of Italy. But in the 19th century, when Italy was unified, Giuseppe Garibaldi honored the wish of the locals for the tiny state not to be incorporated in the Italian state, as a recognition of the help rendered by San Marino to refugees during the war.
Located in a spectacular landscape, San Marino functions as a parliamentary representative democratic republic and is known as a fiscal paradise. Its taxation system is special, levying taxes. Thus, it attracts many tourists who come here to shop for quality products at accessible prices.
Though Italian in style, speaking the Italian language and living in the happy auspices of the Mediterranean, San Marino has a special air about it.
Culturally speaking, it is relevant, having a university and several important historical monuments and museums. In San Marino, you can visit churches: the Basilica or the St. Francis Church, the Government Palace, but also Cesta Fortress and a Torture Museum.
The famous Formula One contest, the San Marino Grand Prix, takes place here. Music is also a great part of the local culture and the Eurovision Song Contest is popular.
The little country also has a special cake, the Torta Di Tre Monti (“Cake of the Three Towers”), which is a chocolate-covered wafer with layers.
If you dare navigate the winding, spectacular roads of San Marino, this little country in the big world is worth a day’s visit!