Modern Italy is a democratic republic. It has been ranked the world’s twenty-third most-developed country, with its capital in Rome. It is one of the fastest growing tourist attractions in the world, contributing significantly to its national economy: with 43.7 million international tourist arrivals and total receipts estimated at $42.7 billion, Italy is the fourth highest tourism earner and the fifth most visited country in the world. Top attractions include the Colosseum and St. Peterâ€™s Basilica.
From folk to classical, music plays an important role in Italian culture. Instruments associated with classical music, like the piano and violin, were invented in Italy, and many of the prevailing classical music forms, such as the symphony, concerto, and sonata, can trace their roots back to innovations of sixteenth- and seventeenth-century Italian music.
Another prominent link to Italy is fashion. Italian fashion is regarded as one of the most important in the world and Milan, Florence and Rome are Italy’s main fashion capitals. Major Italian fashion labels, such as Gucci, Prada, Versace, Valentino, Armani, Dolce & Gabbana, Missoni, Fendi, Moschino, Max Mara and Ferragamo, to name a few, are regarded as amongst the finest fashion houses in the world. Also, the fashion magazine Vogue Italia, is considered the most important and prestigious fashion magazine in the world.