Her name is Befana, she is a witch, rides on her broom and she is ugly. But the Befana usually smiles and brings presents to the kids if they have been nice. Naughty kids only get a lump of coal. This strange Italian tradition takes place on January 6th. The Befana is a mixture between Helloween, Christmas and the Magi. January 6th is the day when according to Christian tradition the Magi – the three kings – brought their presents to Jesus. The origin of the Befana is definitely not Christian, maybe Roman. An old tradition to greet the new year.
No other country in Europe has as many volcanoes as Italy. This is because the Italian peninsula stands on a fault line. Three major volcanoes (Etna, Stromboli, and Vesuvius) have erupted in the last hundred years.