The Best Way to See Italy

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Phelipe Cardoso Sekai

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  • Arts & Culture

  • City Travel

  • Couples Travel

  • Food & Wine

  • Luxury Travel

  • Venice

  • Rome

  • Florence

  • Italy

  • Local Culture

  • Local Food

  • Shopping

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Curator’s statement

Exploring Italy is a dream for many travelers, and the country offers a rich tapestry of history, culture, cuisine and stunning landscapes. Here's a detailed guide on the best way to see Italy, covering major cities, attractions and travel tips.

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Where to stay in Italy

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J.K. Place Roma

Housed in Rome’s former school of architecture, J.K. Place Roma is a boutique hotel with an abundance of chic style and warm hospitality.

Fora Perks
  • $100 food / beverage credit.

  • Breakfast daily.

  • Upgrade & extended check-in/out whenever possible.

Four Seasons Hotel Firenze

An oasis in the city center, home to an Old World style, a Michelin-starred restaurant and Florence’s largest private garden.


Fora Perks
  • When you book Four Seasons through Fora, you will enjoy exclusive Four Seasons Preferred Partner benefits. Your advisor will be pleased to give you more details.

Portrait Milano

Portrait Milano: Where artistry and sophistication blend seamlessly, creating an unforgettable canvas of hospitality.

Fora Perks
  • $100 spa credit.

  • Breakfast daily.

  • Upgrade & extended check-in/out whenever possible.

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Unlock perks by contacting Phelipe to book your trip.

Things to do in Italy

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  • Duration

Ideally, plan to spend at least 2-3 weeks in Italy to fully immerse yourself in its diverse offerings. However, if you have less time, focus on specific regions or cities to make the most of your visit.

  • Best Time to Visit

Spring (April to June) and early Autumn (September to October) are the best times to visit, with pleasant weather, fewer crowds and blooming landscapes. Summers (July and August) can be hot and crowded, especially in popular tourist destinations.

Arrival in Rome

  • Day 1: Arrive in Rome, check into your accommodation, and get oriented. Consider staying in the historic center to easily access major attractions.

  • Day 2: Start your exploration with a visit to the Colosseum, Roman Forum, and Palatine Hill. Consider booking skip-the-line tickets in advance to save time.

  • Day 3: Explore the Vatican City, including St. Peter's Basilica, the Vatican Museums, and the Sistine Chapel. Plan to spend the morning here and enjoy the afternoon in Castel Sant'Angelo and Piazza Navona.

Florence - Renaissance Wonders

  • Day 4: Travel to Florence by train (about 1.5-2 hours). Spend your first day exploring the historic center, including Piazza del Duomo, Florence Cathedral (Duomo) and the Baptistry.

  • Day 5: Visit the renowned Uffizi Gallery, home to masterpieces by Botticelli, Leonardo da Vinci and Michelangelo. Reserve tickets in advance.

  • Day 6: Take a day trip to Siena, known for its medieval architecture and the stunning Siena Cathedral. Enjoy a leisurely dinner in Florence.

Venice - Canals and Romance

  • Day 7: Travel to Venice by train (about 2.5-3 hours). Explore St. Mark's Square, St. Mark's Basilica and the Doge's Palace.

  • Day 8: Wander through the charming neighborhoods of Venice, such as Dorsoduro and Cannaregio. Enjoy a gondola ride in the early evening.

  • Day 9: Visit the islands of Murano and Burano for glassblowing and colorful houses. In the evening, dine at a canal-side restaurant.

Cinque Terre - Coastal Beauty

  • Day 10: Travel to the Cinque Terre region (about four-five hours by train), a coastal gem. Begin in Monterosso al Mare and relax on the beach.

  • Day 11: Explore the colorful villages of Vernazza, Corniglia, Manarola, and Riomaggiore. Hike between some of them or take the train.

  • Day 12: Spend the morning hiking or relaxing in the villages. In the afternoon, travel to Pisa (about one hour by train) to see the Leaning Tower of Pisa.

Tuscany's Countryside

  • Day 13: Head to the Tuscan countryside by train and car. Stay in an agriturismo, a charming farmhouse.

  • Day 14: Explore the picturesque town of San Gimignano and its famous medieval towers.

  • Day 15: Take a wine tour through the Chianti region, tasting local wines and enjoying Tuscan cuisine.

  • Day 16: Visit the historic city of Florence once more or explore more Tuscan towns at your own pace.

Amalfi Coast - Coastal Elegance

  • Day 17: Travel to the Amalfi Coast by train and bus or car. Stay in Positano, known for its dramatic cliffs and charming streets.

  • Day 18: Explore Positano and enjoy the beach. Take a scenic drive along the Amalfi Coast and visit Amalfi.

  • Day 19: Visit Ravello for its stunning gardens and panoramic views. Explore nearby villages like Furore and Atrani.

  • Day 20: Consider taking a day trip to the historic city of Naples to savor Neapolitan pizza and explore Pompeii or Herculaneum.

Sicily - Island Adventure

  • Day 21: Fly to Catania, Sicily. Explore the historic center and enjoy local cuisine.

  • Day 22: Visit the ancient city of Syracuse, known for its Greek ruins, and then explore the charming town of Ortigia.

  • Day 23: Explore Mount Etna, Europe's most active volcano. Consider taking a guided tour to learn about its geology.

Back to the Mainland - Italian Lakes and Milan

  • Day 24: Travel back to the mainland and visit the Italian Lakes region, starting with Lake Como.

  • Day 25: Explore Lake Como and take a boat ride to Bellagio.

  • Day 26: Travel to Lake Garda and enjoy water activities or a visit to the town of Sirmione.

  • Day 27: Head to Milan, Italy's fashion capital. Explore the historic Duomo, shop in the Quadrilatero della Moda and visit museums.

  • Day 28: Depart from Milan, concluding your Italian adventure.

Travel Tips:

  • Use Italy's efficient train system for intercity travel.

  • Savor regional cuisines and specialties unique to each city and region.

  • Learn basic Italian phrases for smoother interactions with locals.

  • Be mindful of dress codes when visiting religious sites.

  • Purchase skip-the-line tickets for popular attractions in advance.

  • Embrace responsible tourism by respecting local customs and the environment.

Places to eat & drink in Italy

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Ristorante Da Pancrazio in Rome

Enjoy traditional Roman cuisine in a charming, historic setting. Try classics like Cacio e Pepe, Carbonara and Roman-style artichokes. The restaurant's cellar, dating back to Ancient Rome, is must-see.

Trattoria Sostanza in Florence

This unassuming trattoria is renowned for its classic Tuscan comfort food. Don't miss their buttery chicken dish, known as "Bistecca alla Fiorentina," and their famous tortellini in brodo (tortellini in broth).

Osteria Bancogiro in Venice

Located along the Grand Canal, this osteria offers a delightful seafood-focused menu. Savor fresh catches of the day, like squid ink pasta or seafood risotto, while enjoying the picturesque view.

Lo Scoglio in Amalfi Coast

Experience Mediterranean cuisine at its best with a visit to Lo Scoglio. This seaside restaurant in Marina del Cantone offers incredibly fresh seafood and pasta dishes. Be sure to try their famous spaghetti with zucchini flowers.

Al Porticciolo 84 in Lake Como

This charming lakeside restaurant serves delectable Italian cuisine with a focus on fresh ingredients. Enjoy pasta, risotto and lake fish while taking in beautiful views of Lake Como.

Antica Trattoria Della Pesa in Milan

Savor Milanese specialties like Osso Buco and Risotto alla Milanese at Antica Trattoria. The cozy and elegant atmosphere provides a perfect backdrop for indulging in northern Italian cuisine.

Need to Know

Looking for more travel inspiration? Check out my guide, Rio Carnival: Choose the Perfect Hotel for the Festivities

Phelipe wearing glasses, a suit and a hat while smiling and standing outside in front of a city street.

Travel Advisor

Phelipe Cardoso Sekai

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This guide is part of our ongoing series on travel to Italy.