Rimini in Italy is one of my favorite resorts of all times. The water is warm and clear, sandy beaches are wide and shallow with lots of seashells. You can walk for miles and enjoy the views. Of course, there is also fantastic Italian cuisine and hospitality. Rimini is a great base for many reasons – you can visit Venice, Ravenna, Bologna, Florence and of course – San Marino.
In this post, I am going to write about my own experience going on San Marino Holidays on a day trip from Rimini, Italy. It was one of the highlights of my Italy trip and very memorable trip due to a number of reasons. Even though I visited San Marino with a tour bus, you can easily do the same with public transport.
What is San Marino?
Did you know, that San Marino is the world’s oldest surviving republic? It is also one of the smallest countries in the world. It’s only neighbor is Italy and this tiny country has a lot in common with it’s neighbor, for example both countries have the same currency (Euro). Tourism is one of the main sources of income here. The town does feel touristy, especially during high season. However, it still has an ancient charm and is truly well preserved. That’s why we highly recommend taking San Marino day trip from Rimini!
How to go on San Marino Holidays from Rimini
The only way to reach San Marino with public transport is by bus from Rimini (TIMETABLE 2017-2018 HERE). Return ticket price is 10€ and the buses leave fairly regularly. Trip duration is 50 minutes. You can reach Rimini by train from anywhere in Italy if you are not staying there. Closest airport is also in Rimini and Ryanair is operating flights to and from the UK.
We recommend arriving early due to high amount of great activities and things to do. One day should be enough to explore the tiny country and shop for souvenirs.
Must see and do
Today, most of San Marino is a huge tourist trap. Every now and there you bump into masses looking for cheap booze and tax free items. So how to see some of San Marino and not get stuck with the masses? Head to one of the three defensive towers for great views of the nearby villages and fortresses. If you are lucky and its sunny, you may easily see the Adriatic coast (its just 10 km away). Fortifications were restored thanks to Twentieth Century Fox. The company used them later as film set for Prince of Foxes.
A bit touristy, but certainly worth seeing is a guard changing ceremony in Piazza della Libertà. It takes place once an hour on the half-hour.
Souvenirs from San Marino
Today, San Marino is an open-air museum and stamp collector’s paradise. Every other shop is selling either stamps, coins or other collectibles of some sort. Lot’s of shops are also selling replica weaponry and different liqueurs. San Marino is tax free zone, so you may find good deals on brand watches and sun glasses. The quality is great – I still wear Ray Bans that I bought there over 5 years ago!
What to eat in San Marino?
It should come as no surprise that Italian cuisine and wines are dominant here. You will see lots of pizza and pasta offers everywhere you go along with Gelato (Italian ice cream). Look for wine cellars to buy exclusive local wines and spirits. I had the best tiramisu dessert in my life in San Marino. It tasted heavenly and the view from the cafe was making things even better! If you come here during Medieval Days, you may get lucky to taste some of the local specialties, too.
It might be a good idea if you have time on your hands. Here is why – at daytime, the city is polluted with tourists. Mostly it’s the people who hardly care for the charm of this little town, looking for tax free stuff. So if you decide to stay overnight, you might be lucky to have the town for yourself, at last. Neighboring villages, beautiful panoramas and empty streets – it will be like time travel few centuries back. The prices are not too bad, even in summer!
Quick Facts about San Marino
- Most Serene Republic of San Marino is one of the oldest Republics on Earth
- S.M. Founded in 301 A.D.
- Italian is an official language
- The standard of living is similar to that of Denmark
- One-bedroom apartment will cost you 600-800€ to rent
- 50% of its income comes from tourism
- Today, San Marino’s type of government is similar to the one of ancient Rome
- San Marino has its own tiny army including crossbow corps
Have you been to San Marino?