Italy Travel Guide
Italy is home to some of the world's best food, wine, and art. Add in gorgeous coastlines, beautiful beaches, world-class fashion, phenomenal hiking trails, villas in Tuscany, and gelato, and you have the ingredients for an epic vacation. Italy is a favorite destination for many travelers for a very good reason. Come live "la dolce vita," the sweet life.

Italy Itineraries

If you are planning a trip to Italy, here are a few travel itineraries to help get you started.
If you have 10 days in Italy, we have four great ideas for how you can spend your time. Spend 10 days visiting Rome, Florence, and Venice, a classic trip for first-timers. Or, take your pick from itineraries that include other great destinations, such as the Amalfi Coast, the Dolomites, and San Marino.
For first timers to Italy, Rome, Florence and Venice typically top the “must-see” list. On this 10 day Italy itinerary, you have enough time to visit these three cities and add in another spectacular destination, the coastal towns of the Cinque Terre.
For those who want to combine a few Italian cities with some of the most beautiful scenery in Europe, you’ll love this northern Italy itinerary. After a few days in Venice, you’ll spend four days exploring the Dolomites, a world-class hiking destination filled with some of the best outdoor scenery in all of Europe. From the Dolomites, visit lovely Verona, Milan, and then spend a day at Lake Como.
With two weeks in Italy, you can visit the highlights…Rome, Florence, Venice, the Amalfi Coast, Tuscany, and the Cinque Terre. Visit ancient historical sites, cruise the canals in Venice, dine on Italian food, go wine tasting in Tuscany, relax on the beach, walk through the heart of Rome, and watch the sunset from the Cinque Terre. It’s the trip of a lifetime.

Rome

Rome is one of the world’s great cities. Full of historical treasures such as the Colosseum, the Roman Forum, and the Pantheon, this city is well worth a few days of your time, even on the fastest visits to Italy.

In September 2022, we spent four days in Rome and we have plans to add a lot more information to this section of our Italy Travel Guide in the upcoming weeks.

Tuscany

The list of things to do in Tuscany is wonderfully long. Visit Florence, go wine tasting, tour the vineyards and hill towns, photograph the leaning tower of Pisa, and hike the five colorful towns of the Cinque Terre.

We recently spent 10 days exploring Florence and Tuscany and we will have a lot more information to share in the upcoming months. If you are planning a trip to Tuscany, bookmark this page and refer back to it for more updates.

Featured image for “10 Best Things To Do On Your First Visit To Florence”

10 Best Things To Do On Your First Visit To Florence

Florence is one of Italy’s most popular cities to visit, especially for first-timers. Not only is Florence the art capital…
Featured image for “15 Best Things to Do in Cortona, Italy (+ HELPFUL Tips & Photos)”

15 Best Things to Do in Cortona, Italy (+ HELPFUL Tips & Photos)

Made famous by the movie Under the Tuscan Sun, Cortona is a small, Tuscan hill town with a short to…
Featured image for “5 Wonderful Things to Do in Montalcino, Italy”

5 Wonderful Things to Do in Montalcino, Italy

Montalcino is one of our favorite hill towns in Tuscany. Perched on a hilltop, overlooking the Sangiovese vineyards and stunning…
Featured image for “8 Best Rooftop Bars in Florence (RANKED!)”

8 Best Rooftop Bars in Florence (RANKED!)

Visiting a rooftop bar or two (or three!) is one of the best things to do in Florence. If you…
Featured image for “Best Views of Florence, Italy”

Best Views of Florence, Italy

Are you planning a trip to Florence? Sure, you can’t miss Michelangelo’s David, the Ponte Vecchio, Italian food and gelato, and the galleries…
Featured image for “Day Trip to the Leaning Tower of Pisa”

Day Trip to the Leaning Tower of Pisa

The Leaning Tower of Pisa, overrated tourist attraction or worthwhile destination? Regardless if you think Pisa is overrated or worthwhile,…
Featured image for “One Perfect Day in Siena, Italy”

One Perfect Day in Siena, Italy

Siena is easy to visit if you only have one day since it is a compact city with just a…
Featured image for “Pienza, Italy: Best Things to Do, Tours & Helpful Tips”

Pienza, Italy: Best Things to Do, Tours & Helpful Tips

Stroll the picturesque streets, dine on pecorino cheese, walk the city walls, and tour a Renaissance palace…these are all things…
Featured image for “San Gimignano: Photo Tour & the Best Things to Do”

San Gimignano: Photo Tour & the Best Things to Do

Tuscany, Italy is known for its wine and splendid scenery, and we loved the time we spent here.  The hill…
Featured image for “Top 10 Things to Do in Montepulciano, Italy”

Top 10 Things to Do in Montepulciano, Italy

Perched on a hilltop, overlooking the rolling hills of Tuscany, sits Montepulciano. This medieval town, with its underground wine cellars,…
Featured image for “Touring the Hill Towns of Tuscany”

Touring the Hill Towns of Tuscany

We spent five days in Tuscany, staying in the town of Siena. We picked Siena as our home base because…
Featured image for “Volterra, Italy: Best Things to Do, Map & HELPFUL Tips”

Volterra, Italy: Best Things to Do, Map & HELPFUL Tips

Volterra is a hilltop town that is located in Tuscany, Italy. It’s one of the larger hill towns to visit…

Cinque Terre

The Cinque Terre, a UNESCO World Heritage Site, is a group of five towns perched on the dramatic coastline of Italy, just north of Pisa.

Venice

Venice is one of Italy’s most beautiful and romantic cities. Spend a few days here, wandering the canals, hopping between cafes, and visiting the historical sites.

Northern Italy

Northern Italy is a wonderland of mountains and lakes. Explore Lake Garda and Lake Como, visit Milan, and spend a day or two in lovely Verona. The Dolomites are also located in northern Italy and we have so much information to share that the Dolomites gets its own section (next in this travel guide).

The Dolomites

The Dolomites of Italy are one of our favorite places in the world to go hiking. But you don't have to be a big hiker to enjoy a visit here. There are plenty of things to do that don't involve hiking, from scenic drives, riding the cable cars to spectacular viewpoints, and skiing in the winter.
Dolomites Travel Guide

In our Dolomites Travel Guide, we have links to all of our articles about the Dolomites. We cover the top hiking trails, the best things to do, how to plan your visit, how to get around, and have lots of suggestions for how to plan your time.

Below are links to a portion of our guides on the Dolomites. You can see all of them in our Dolomites Travel Guide.

Featured image for “15 Epic Day Hikes in the Dolomites (RANKED!!)”

15 Epic Day Hikes in the Dolomites (RANKED!!)

The Dolomites are one of our favorite places in the world to go hiking. This area is truly a hiker’s…
Featured image for “Best Things to Do in the Dolomites (With Little to No Hiking)”

Best Things to Do in the Dolomites (With Little to No Hiking)

The Dolomites are one of the best places in the world to go hiking. But what if you don’t want…
Featured image for “Best Way to Visit Seceda (with Little to No Hiking)”

Best Way to Visit Seceda (with Little to No Hiking)

Seceda is one of the most popular viewpoints in the Dolomites. From the summit of Seceda, you can look out…
Featured image for “Croda da Lago Circuit Hike (+ Lago Federa & Forcella Ambrizzola)”

Croda da Lago Circuit Hike (+ Lago Federa & Forcella Ambrizzola)

The Croda da Lago Circuit is one of the most underrated hikes that we did in the Dolomites. With a…
Featured image for “How to Hike the Cinque Torri (Map, Photos & Best Viewpoints)”

How to Hike the Cinque Torri (Map, Photos & Best Viewpoints)

The Cinque Torri is one of the most recognizable rock formations in the Dolomites. It is a popular hiking and…
Featured image for “How to Hike the Puez-Odle Altopiano Trail in the Dolomites”

How to Hike the Puez-Odle Altopiano Trail in the Dolomites

The Puez-Odle Altopiano is a spectacular hike from start to finish. With jaw-dropping views of the Dolomites, fields of wildflowers,…
Featured image for “How to Hike to Rifugio Averau and Rifugio Nuvolau”

How to Hike to Rifugio Averau and Rifugio Nuvolau

For jaw-dropping views of the Dolomites, and drinks (or a meal) with a view, it’s hard to beat Rifugio Nuvolau.…
Featured image for “How to Hike to the Cadini di Misurina Viewpoint (Map, Photos & Helpful Tips)”

How to Hike to the Cadini di Misurina Viewpoint (Map, Photos & Helpful Tips)

The hike to the Cadini di Misurina viewpoint is one of our favorite short hikes in the Dolomites. This is…
Featured image for “How to Plan a Trip to the Dolomites: Things to Know Before You Go”

How to Plan a Trip to the Dolomites: Things to Know Before You Go

The Dolomites. This is where jagged pinnacles of rock soar into the sky, mountain huts and cabins dot the green,…
Featured image for “How to Visit Lago di Braies (HELPFUL Tips & Photos)”

How to Visit Lago di Braies (HELPFUL Tips & Photos)

Lago di Braies (Pragser Wildsee) is one of the most popular places to visit in the Dolomites. This crystal-clear aquamarine…
Featured image for “Tofana-Cortina Cable Car to Cima Tofana & Tofana di Mezzo”

Tofana-Cortina Cable Car to Cima Tofana & Tofana di Mezzo

For one of the best views of the Dolomites, put the Tofana-Freccia nel Cielo Cable Car on your to-do list.…
Featured image for “Tre Cime di Lavaredo Loop: The Complete Hiking Guide”

Tre Cime di Lavaredo Loop: The Complete Hiking Guide

Tre Cime di Lavaredo is one of the Dolomites’ iconic hikes. Three massive rocky prominences rise up from the rolling…
Featured image for “Ultimate Dolomites Itinerary: Best of the Dolomites from 1 to 10 Days”

Ultimate Dolomites Itinerary: Best of the Dolomites from 1 to 10 Days

If you are planning your Dolomites itinerary, there is an overwhelming amount of information to process…both on the internet and…
Featured image for “Ultimate Guide to Lago di Sorapis: Trail Routes, Helpful Tips, & Photos”

Ultimate Guide to Lago di Sorapis: Trail Routes, Helpful Tips, & Photos

Lago di Sorapis (Lake Sorapis) is one of the most popular hikes in the Dolomites. Located just outside of Cortina…
Featured image for “Where to Stay in the Dolomites 2023: Best Locations & Hotels”

Where to Stay in the Dolomites 2023: Best Locations & Hotels

One of the most important (and sometimes the most challenging) things to decide when planning a trip to the Dolomites…

Campania (Amalfi Coast & Sorrento)

Campania is the region that is home to Naples, Mount Vesuvius and Pompeii, Sorrento, Capri, and the Amalfi Coast. This area can be visited on a very long day trip from Rome but for the best experience, plan on spending a few nights here.

Like Tuscany and Rome, we spent quite a bit of time in Sorrento and on the Amalfi Coast in 2022 and we will be adding a lot more information to this section in the upcoming months.

Featured image for “10 Epic Things to Do in Capri (+ Map, Photos, Tips)”

10 Epic Things to Do in Capri (+ Map, Photos, Tips)

The island of Capri is one of Italy’s most popular coastal destinations. Taking a boat tour around the island, visiting…
Featured image for “15 Best Things to Do on the Amalfi Coast of Italy”

15 Best Things to Do on the Amalfi Coast of Italy

What do you look for when picking the perfect vacation spot? Beautiful beaches? Charming towns to explore? Shopping? Restaurants with…
Featured image for “17 Beautiful Towns on the Amalfi Coast (+Map & Photos)”

17 Beautiful Towns on the Amalfi Coast (+Map & Photos)

Dotting the dramatic coastal cliffs of the Amalfi Coast are small, colorful towns that are a delight to explore. Positano,…
Featured image for “7 Wonderful Things to Do in Ravello, Italy”

7 Wonderful Things to Do in Ravello, Italy

Ravello is a cliffside town on the Amalfi Coast. With its villas, beautiful gardens, and extraordinary views along the coast,…
Featured image for “Best Way to Get Around the Amalfi Coast: Car, Bus, Boat, or Tour”

Best Way to Get Around the Amalfi Coast: Car, Bus, Boat, or Tour

If you are planning a visit to the Amalfi Coast, one of the biggest questions you may have is “what…
Featured image for “Driving the Amalfi Coast: What’s It Like & Is It a Good Idea?”

Driving the Amalfi Coast: What’s It Like & Is It a Good Idea?

Driving the Amalfi Coast is popular bucket list experience. To drive this winding road, past dramatic coastal cliffs, some of…
Featured image for “How to Travel from Rome to Sorrento, Capri & the Amalfi Coast”

How to Travel from Rome to Sorrento, Capri & the Amalfi Coast

How to travel from Rome to Sorrento and the Amalfi Coast can be a little confusing. You can’t simply hop…
Featured image for “How to Visit Pompeii when Traveling Between Rome and Sorrento”

How to Visit Pompeii when Traveling Between Rome and Sorrento

A visit to Pompeii is one of Italy’s most fascinating history lessons. Pompeii can be visited as a day trip…
Featured image for “How to Visit the Blue Grotto (and is It Worth It?)”

How to Visit the Blue Grotto (and is It Worth It?)

While in Italy, we spent three days in Sorrento and devoted one of these days to visiting the island of…
Featured image for “Path of the Gods Hike: Photos, Map, Stats & Helpful Tips”

Path of the Gods Hike: Photos, Map, Stats & Helpful Tips

Located high above the coastal towns of Positano and Praiano is one of the most beautiful walks in Italy, the…
Featured image for “Sorrento & the Amalfi Coast in October | Weather & What to Expect”

Sorrento & the Amalfi Coast in October | Weather & What to Expect

What is it like to visit Sorrento and the Amalfi Coast in October? We have the answer in this guide.…
Featured image for “Three Days in Sorrento, Italy”

Three Days in Sorrento, Italy

During our tour of Italy we had three days to spend in Sorrento. Sorrento is a great home base for…
Featured image for “Top 10 Things to do in Positano, Amalfi Coast, Italy”

Top 10 Things to do in Positano, Amalfi Coast, Italy

Positano is an essential town to visit on the Amalfi Coast. The most popular way to visit Positano is to…

Umbria

The region of Umbria is centrally located in Italy. With rolling hills and river valleys, vineyards and hill towns, Umbria shares some similarities with Tuscany, its neighbor to the northwest. Top things to do in Umbria include visiting the cities of Perugia, Assisi and Orvieto.

Puglia

Puglia, also called Apulia, geographically is the “heel” of Italy. Explore coastal towns such as Vieste, Polignano a Mare, and Gallipoli, take a boat tour of the coastal cliffs, and stroll among the trulli in Alberobello.

Basilicata

Basilicata is a region in southern Italy that sits between Puglia, Campania, and Calabria. Much of this region covers the southern portion of the Apennine Mountains and this is where you will find Matera and Castelmezzano.

Italy Inspiration

Here are a few more articles about things to see and do in and around Italy.

Europe Travel Inspiration & Practical Info

Do you dream of visiting world-class cities like Paris, Barcelona, or Venice? Or would you rather hike the Alps, go on a scenic train ride, explore the beautiful beaches and coastal towns in southern Europe, visit fairytale towns and castles, island hop in Greece, or go on an unforgettable road trip in northern Europe?

In this article we list 25 ways to spend one week in Europe. 

Top Experiences in Italy

Renaissance Art.  See the works of Leonardo DaVinci, Michelangelo, and Raphael. With world-class art museums such as the Uffizi Gallery in Florence and the Borghese Museum in Rome, getting at least a peak at some of these masterpieces is not to be missed. A word of advice: during the high season, book your tickets in advance.

Cruise the Canals of Venice. Whether by gondola or vaporetto, drifting through the canals of Venice is an iconic Italian experience.

Hike the Cinque Terre. Spend one day hiking through the five towns of the Cinque Terre. It is a fabulous hike and what's better than refueling at each town with fresh fruit, gelato, pasta, and wine?

Visit the Blue Grotto in Capri.  We weren't sure if this one was worth it, but once we did it, we loved it.

Visit the Vatican. The Vatican Museum is another "must-see" when visiting Italy. Definitely book your tickets in advance (this can literally save waiting in line for hours) and expect HUGE crowds during the summer months.

Climb the towers in Florence. The Duomo is the most popular tower to climb in Florence, but the Campanile was our favorite. Florence is a gorgeous city and the towers give some of the best vantage points.

Lake Como.  Located in northern Italy, come here for alpine vistas and to visit the villas on the water. Lake Como is virtually deserted during the winter months, so plan to visit between March and October.

Verona. This underrated city is one of our favorite spots in Italy. What a gorgeous city to explore.

Pompeii. This ancient city was destroyed by the eruption of Mt. Vesuvius in 79 A.D.  Pompeii is one of Italy's most visited sights. The ash that covered the city preserved the streets, buildings, and even the bodies of those people unable to flee the eruption. Walking through Pompeii is like walking through history.

The Dolomites.  The Dolomites were our favorite part of Italy. The hiking was epic, the scenery was stunning, and we loved the Austria meets Italy vibe.

Tour the Hill Towns of Tuscany.  Tuscany is packed with quaint, hillside towns. Walk the cobblestoned lanes, dine on delicious Italian food, go on wine tastings, and go shopping. You could spend a week in Tuscany, visiting a new town every day.

See DaVinci's "Last Supper" in Milan. Tickets for a 15 minute viewing sell out weeks in advance, so this is an activity that needs to be planned ahead of time, but it's worth it. Visiting Milan can be done as a day trip and seeing the "Last Supper" can easily fit into your itinerary.

Visit the Greek Ruins in Sicily. Some of the best Greek temples in the world, even better than those found in Greece, can be found in Sicily. Some of these ruins date back to the 5th century  B.C.!

The Amalfi Coast. The Amalfi Coast is labeled as one of the most scenic drives in the world.   It's beautiful, it's filled with hair pin turns, and some people call it a "white-knuckle" ride. Come see for yourself.

The Leaning Tower of Pisa.  Do you think the Leaning Tower of Pisa is too touristy? Maybe. But it's a quick visit and it can easily be seen as a day trip from Florence or on your way to the Cinque Terre.

Visit Sardinia. This rugged island is home to long, sandy beaches, prehistoric sites, and colorful coastal towns. The mountainous interior of the island is a hiking paradise, where you can visit one of the deepest gorges in Europe and the highest sand dunes in Europe.

Visit Puglia. Puglia, also called Apulia, geographically is the “heel” of Italy. What brings most visitors to this part of Italy is the town of Alberobello and its white-washed conical huts. But you can also find colorful coastal towns, national parks, and stunning coastal cliffs.

How Many Days Do You Need in Italy?

At minimum, plan on spending 7 days in Italy. This gives you just enough time to visit two cities and do a day trip or two.

For the best experience, plan on spending 10 days in Italy. This gives you enough time to visit three cities (Rome, Florence and Venice) or several regions of Italy (Amalfi Coast, Rome, and Tuscany).

With even more time, you can tour Italy’s highlights or immerse yourself in one or two regions.

If you only have a few days in Italy, we recommend choosing one city and doing day trips from here.

Best Time to Visit Italy

Spring and fall are generally the best times to visit Italy. During these two seasons, the weather is great for sightseeing and crowds can be a little lower than the summer months.

July and August are the hottest months of the year and visitation is at its highest. During this time, the weather is generally warm/hot with sunny skies, but expect big crowds and higher prices for hotels.

Rainfall picks up in the fall, especially around Rome, the Amalfi Coast, and southern Italy. But crowds also lessen at this time.

Winter can be cold, especially in northern Italy, but if you want to visit Italy without the crowds, this is the best time go (aside from holidays such as Christmas and New Years).

Spring is a beautiful time to visit Italy, with warming weather and blooming flowers. May is one of the best months to visit Italy, with great weather for sightseeing and crowds not yet at peak levels.

Italy Travel Guide with Itineraries