If you are researching where to go in Italy, without a doubt you are finding gorgeous, vibrant photos of Italy’s top destinations. Would you like to know how to get these same gorgeous views of Italy?
In this post, find out how to get a bird’s eye view over Venice, where to get one of the best views of the Dolomites, and where to snap the best photos of the Cinque Terre. All of these spots are easy to get to and no special camera equipment is required. And whether or not you just want to take in a beautiful view or capture the moment forever in a photograph, these are very simple spots to add into your tour of Italy.
Best Views of Italy
Overlooking Rome from St. Peter’s Basilica
For this iconic view over St. Mark’s Square and Rome, climb the dome of St. Peter’s Basilica.
Where: The Dome of St. Peter’s Basilica
How To Do It: Climb 551 steps to the top for €6 or take an elevator to the terrace and then climb 320 steps to the top for €8
The Colors of Vernazza
This view of Vernazza is one of the most photographed and gorgeous spots on the Cinque Terre. Getting here requires a short walk on the hiking trail but it’s worth it…this still remains one of my favorite photos of Italy.
Where: From the Cinque Terre hiking trail, GPS coordinates: 44.136594, 9.681343
How To Do It: From the harbor of Vernazza, walk past Chiesa di Santa Margherita to hiking trail. Roughly 200 meters down this trail, in the direction of Monterosso, is an overlook where you can get this same view.
LEARN MORE: Hiking the Cinque Terre, What You Need to Know
Positano from the Mediterranean Sea
If you want a unique view of Positano, see it from the Mediterranean Sea. We rented kayaks for an hour, the perfect way to cool off in the hot summer weather and get this stunning view of Positano. If you don’t feel like kayaking, you can get a similar view from the ferries that cruise up and down the coast.
Where: Positano, GPS Coordinates: 40°37’35” N 14°29’13” E
How To Do It: We rented kayaks right on the beach in Positano for a price of €30 (2 kayaks for one hour). Enjoy paddling along the coastline!
The Dolomites don’t usually make it onto the must-see list for most travelers to Italy, especially if this is your first time in Italy. But what if I told you that you could have this view with just a tiny bit of hiking?
Simply hop on a cable car, walk a half mile, and enjoy this jaw dropping view of the Dolomites. If you are looking to add some adventure to your Italian holiday, hike the entire Puez-Odle Altopiano for a truly memorable experience.
Where: On the Puez-Odle Altopiano trail near Selva di Val Gardena, GPS Coordinates: 46°33’27” N 11°48’47” E
How To Do It: From the town of Selva di Val Gardena, take the Dantercepies gondola up into the mountains (already the views are amazing!). From the gondola, walk east on the wide, gravel trail until you get to Rifugio Jimmy. From here, take trail No. 2 up into the mountains. You will have to hike up a rocky trail for 500 feet to get this view. If you are willing to go a little higher, the view gets even better.
LEARN MORE: Hiking the Puez-Odle Altopiano
The Grand Canal of Venice
You can get some of the best views of Venice from the small bridges that criss cross over the canals. But my favorite view of Venice is here, on Ponte dell’Accademia, overlooking the Grand Canal.
Where: Ponte dell’Accademia
How To Do It: Simply walk to the top of the bridge to get this view of Venice. Midday, this can be a very crowded spot, but in our experience, at twilight it is surprisingly quiet and uncrowded.
The town of San Gimignano in Tuscany is famous for its fifteen medieval towers. From the top of Torre Grossa, the largest tower in town, overlook the rolling hills of Tuscany and the stone buildings of San Gimignano.
Where: Torre Grossa, San Gimignano
How To Do It: The Torre Grossa is part of the civic museum, located in Piazza del Duomo. It costs €9 to tour the museum and climb the tower (10 am – 7:30 pm during the summer months, reduced hours remainder of the year).
Riomaggiore makes a great spot to watch the sunset in the Cinque Terre. Find a spot on the rocks in the harbor and enjoy the view as the sun sets and town lights up.
Where: Harbor of Riomaggiore, GPS Coordinates: 44°5’53” N 9°44’15” E
How To Do It: The harbor of Riomaggiore is very small. Walk out onto the rocks and do your best to find a comfortable spot to sit.
LEARN MORE: The Cinque Terre for Budget Travelers
The Amalfi Coast
As you journey down the Amalfi Coast, you will be treated to numerous views of the stunning coastline. This photo was taken on the drive between Positano and Amalfi.
Where: On Amalfi Drive in Conca dei Marini, GPS Coordinates: 40.616960, 14.575165
How To Do It: I snapped this photo while on the bus between Positano and Amalfi. This part of the road is very narrow with very few pull-offs for cars. If you have a car, you may be able to park at Hotel Le Terazze and walk the short distance to this viewpoint.
A Bird’s Eye View of Venice
From the top of the Campanile you can have this panoramic view of Venice. An elevator whisks you to the top, so climbing stairs is not necessary.
Where: St. Mark’s Campanile
How To Do It: For €10, take the elevator to the top of the Campanile.
LEARN MORE: 9 Must-Have Experiences in Venice
Watch the Sunset in Florence
It’s a magical experience to watch the sunset over Florence and the best spot to do so is at Piazzale Michelangelo.
Where: Piazzale Michelangelo
How To Do It: To get here it’s just a short walk from the Ponte Vecchio. We stopped at a market on the way and made a picnic dinner, which we ate as we watched the sunset. To get these sunset photos, we spent about an hour and a half here.
LEARN MORE: 10 Things to do on Your First Visit to Florence
If you want to learn more about travel photography, check out our Photography page. Learn how to take better photos while traveling, find out what photography gear we use, and get inspired with photos from around the world.
More Information about Italy
ITALY ITINERARY: 14 Day Italy Itinerary: The Best Way to Spend Two Weeks in Italy
ITALY ITINERARY: 10 Day Italy Itinerary: Rome, Florence, Venice & the Cinque Terre
VERONA: 12 Best Things to Do in Verona, Italy
BELLAGIO: 8 Amazing Things to Do in Bellagio
CAPRI: How to Visit the Blue Grotto (& is It Worth It?)
SAN MARINO: San Marino: Europe’s Most Underrated Destination?
Planning a trip to Italy? Read all of our articles in our Italy Travel Guide.
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