San Marino is one of the smallest states in the world. It is situated in Southern Europe, on the northeastern side of the Apennines Peninsula. San Marino is acknowledged as the most ancient modern states in Europe. The country is surrounded all around by the Italian territory. The capital city is San Marino.
The climate of the country is Mediterranean and subtropical. The average temperature in summer is +24°C and in winter is +4°C. It rarely snows in San Marino. The best time for spending the holidays in San Marino is from July to September.
The majority of the population are the Catholics. The official language is Italian.
For city entertainments, go to the capital city. We recommend visiting a famous complex consisting of three towers: the Guaita Fortress, the Cesta Fortress and the Montale Fortress. These Towers are depicted on the state emblem. From the top of the Guaita Fortress, you will enjoy a fantastic view of Italy and San Marino. The Cesta Fortress was built in the 13th century and it is located on the highest point of the Monte Titano Mount. The tourists can also visit the Museum of ancient arms, see Palazzo Publico, Basilica of St. Marino and the Liberty Square. Those who like active sports and car races should come to San Marino in April when in the city of Imola, which is to the north-west from San Marino, Formula 1 Grand Prix takes place.
A community Serravalle is also of great interest. There is a fortress and a stadium where international contests are held. The tourists visit the Maranello Rosso Automobile Museum which is devoted to the history of a legendary car Ferrari.
There is no airport in San Marino. The tourists from CIS and EU can travel to Rimini and then reach San Marino.
There are regular flights from Moscow and some other Russian cities to Rimini. Take a bus or a taxi to get from Rimini to San Marino.
There are also trips from Milan, Rome and Venice. The companies Aeroflot and Alitalia offer everyday flights from Moscow to these Italian cities. Rossiya Airlines offers flights from St. Petersburg to Milan and Rome.
There are charter flights from Minsk, Kiev and Almaty with a stop in Turin, Verona, Brescia, Bergamo and Ancona.
Trains run every day to Rimini from Italian cities.
The citizens of Russia and other countries can travel to Rimini with a stop in Germany and Italy.
The citizens of Russia, CIS and other non-Schengen states must obtain an Italian Schengen visa to travel to San Marino. San Marino is included into an Italian visa area and the tourists need to submit a valid Italian visa and an international passport (in this case, a visa is issued for free).
If the travelers come to San Marino for a short period of time, the registration is not needed. To obtain a visa, the tourists need to submit the documents confirming their financial sufficiency (traveler's checks, a statement of currency purchase or account verification letter). A Schengen visa is usually ready within five working days.
An urgent visa can be issued within 3 days provided that there is a demonstrable need.
In San Marino there are no restrictions concerning foreign currency import and export. The tourists from non-EU countries must declare the sums exceeding 10.000 Euros (or equivalent).
The travelers can import:
- tobacco and alcohol;
- not more than 100g of tea;
- not more than 250ml of perfume;
- not more than 500g of coffee;
- personal belongings and gifts for a total of 175 Euros for each adult and 90 Euros for each child.
It is prohibited to export from San Marino:
- plants and flowers and soil;
- birds and animals (from the countries where the avian flu was discovered);
- poultry meat from all the countries of Southeastern Asia;
- skins and fur of rare animals and any souvenirs made of such animals.
The authentic cuisine of San Marino is greatly influenced by the culinary traditions of Italy. Almost all local dishes have an Italian origin.
The tourists can try classical Italian dishes such as lasagna with spinach Lasagne verdi, local pasta with meat and cheese Strozzapreti, Cappelletti in Brodo, cannelloni and ravioli. We highly recommend trying pasta with broth and spices Passatelli in brodo, and Tortellini with Bologna sausage stuffing. You will surely like the sauce which is served with pasta Ragu alla Bolognese. The sauce is prepared from minced meat (beef, veal and pork) with spices and red wine.
If you like meat, you should try delicious Coniglio in porchetta al Sangiovese (stuffed rabbit with lard and herbs) and Bollito (mixed boiled meat with herbs and spices). Bolognese and veal escallops hold a special place in the cuisine of San Marino.
Poultry is very popular among the chefs in San Marino. Special attention shall be given to roasted ptarmigan, roasted chicken with zest and spices and Mutfuls, a mix of three kinds of meat.
The foodies will surely enjoy a thick fish soup Brodetto di pesce and Minestra dei Poveri with beans, lard and pasta.
In San Marino, they always serve bread Piada, traditional Italian Polenta and delicious local cheeses with the meals.
San Marino is a paradise for those who like sweets. We highly recommend trying a caramel desert Caciatello, a cake San Marino and fluffy pastry Ciambella. We are sure that you will be under great impression after trying Bustrengo (sweet bread with Parmesan, figs and fruits). This bread is served with the wines Passito and Albana dolce.
San Marino is world famous with its wines. Do not leave the country without trying such red wines as Reserva, Brugneto, and Tessano; and white wines such as Caldese, Biancale, and Roncale. Local liqueurs have a wonderful bouquet: anise liqueur Mistra, herbal liqueur Duca di Galdo and Tilus with a truffle aroma.
The national currency in San Marino is Euro. We recommend exchanging the currency at banks, exchange offices and post offices. Try not to exchange the currency at airports because the currency exchange rate is much higher there.
In San Marino, there are many ATMs working with US dollars and Euro.
International credit cards are accepted in large stores, hotels and restaurants. The cards Visa, Carte Blanche, Diner's Club, MasterCard and American Express are valid in San Marino.
You can cash a traveler's check at any bank and in some hotels.
The tax-free system is available in San Marino. To get VAT refunds in San Marino, the travelers need to:
- make a purchase for the sum exceeding 155 Euros;
- get a slip for tax-free;
- send the slip with the customs stamp to the store to receive the check with the sum of the refund.
Details of interest
Sightseeing in San Marino
- In the capital city, the tourists will visit a famous complex consisting of three towers: the Guaita Fortress, the Cesta Fortress and the Montale Fortress. These Towers became a symbol of the country. In Guaita, there is the Guard Museum and the Artillery Museum.
- An interesting place to visit is the Statue of Liberty, the Government Palace and the Church of St. Quirinus in the Capuchin monastery. Go to the sightseeing platform and do not miss an excursion to the San Marino Fortress. In San Marino, there is the highest point in the country. If you like your holidays to be useful, visit the State Museum of San Marino, Pinacoteca San Francesco where you will see the religious objects of the Franciscan orden and the Gallery of Modern Art with the works by contemporary artists. You will be impressed by the collection in the Wax Museum in San Marino. Tickle your nerves and visit the Torture Museum. A visit to Museum of Emigration will be a good experience.
- The Historical Center of San Marino and the Mount Titano in the region of Borgo Maggiore are inscribed in the UNESCO World Heritage List.
- In the community Serravalle, the tourists can see the First Tower, the Liberty Square, the People's Palace, the Second Tower Cesta and the local stadium. Enjoy your walk to the Malatesta Castle.
- The museum of rare automobiles Museo di Auto d'Epoka and car collection Maranello Rosso will leave an unforgettable impression.
- The Church of St. Francesco within the famous Basilica of San Marino is the oldest building in the country. Visit the Art Gallery and the Museum of the Religious Art.
- The city of Borgo Maggiore is linked with San Marino by a ropeway, the total length of which is 1.500km. Have a trip to a local church the Abbey of Sant'Antimo, the Basilica and National Shrine of Our Lady of Consolation and the Vaglioni Oratorio Chapel.
- In July, the major sailing regatta Ore di San Marino takes place in San Marino.
Souvenirs in San Marino
- The tourists buy glass and wooden crafts, pottery, embroidery, commemorate coins with the depiction of animals, golden coins scudi from the State Agency for Philately and Numismatics.
- Towels, napkins and bed linen with hand painted floral pattern and a wooden toy of Pinocchio are sold in Borgo Maggiore.
- In Serravalle buy the liqueurs Mistra, Duca di Galdo and Tilus and wonderful red wine Fragolino.