Italy Trip Recommendations

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Things to Do and See in Italy

Italy has really only been a unified nation since the nineteenth century. As such, it is much more a conglomeration of regional attitudes, cuisines, and cultures than it is a unified culture. Because of this, it is very difficult to see “Italy.” You can easily immerse yourself in the history and culture of several of Italy’s former kingdoms while on a vacation, but to see all of Italy might take a lifetime’s worth of trips.

That said, if you only have one Italian vacation and you want to make the most of it, then you’ll want to eat your way through the country from big site to big site. The highlights of a general Italian vacation include the Roman ruins at the Forum and Coliseum in Rome; the Spanish Steps and Trevi Fountain (also in Rome); the art of Michelangelo in the Sistine Chapel and other parts of the Vatican (as well as in Florence); the leaning tower of Pisa; the flooded canals of Venice; the rolling countryside of Tuscany and Emilia-Romagna; and the Phlegraean Fields, Amalfi Coast, and Pompeii. 

Weather in Italy

Italy is in the Northern hemisphere and far enough from the equator to have a full four seasons, just as we do in most of North America. That said, Italy does have several different microclimates. In the North and in the Dolomites, the winters are as harsh as they can be in the Alps.

In the South, the summers can be as hot as they are in North Africa. If you are traveling in the summer and plan to hit sites throughout the peninsula, be sure to pack for multiple climates and temperature zones.

Italy’s Transportation Options

All of the major and minor Italian cities have mass transit and taxi service available. Italy has two excellent train systems, one publicly owned and the other privately owned. Italy also has an extensive modern road system, and in some cases, renting a car or purchasing a motorcycle or scooter may be your best bet for getting off the beaten tourist path. 

Hotels & Resorts in Italy

Italy is full of excellent hotels, inns, pensions, hostels, and campgrounds. There is something in nearly every town across the countryside, and options in many, if not every, price range.

Tourism makes up an extensive portion of the Italian economy, and the nation is equipped to handle the many tourists that it attracts. Luxury and spa accommodations are available in all of the major cities and major tourist areas. There are also home stay and home rental options available for travelers.

Unique Adventures and Experiences in Italy

The trick for some when visiting Italy for the second or third time can be in finding things to experience that aren’t on the standard punch list for the country. For others, a first trip to Italy may require some traveling beyond the well-rutted path between Rome and Venice. Italy is really a nation made of kingdoms, and getting to some of the lesser-known areas can yield tremendous rewards.

Take a trip to the southeastern-most region of Italy, Puglia, and tour the Unesco World Heritage site, Alberobello. Book a night or two in a Trullo house (stone architecture that dates back to before Italy was Italy) and spend your days picnicking on the shore of the Adriatic Sea.

Take a ferry to Sicily and experience the unique food culture of the island, along with its regional dialect and a history that’s independent of the peninsula.

Travel the pastel fishing villages of the Italian Riviera through Liguria, sampling local seafood delicacies while trying not to die because everything is so beautiful and less crowded than either the South of France or the Amalfi Coast.

More About Italy

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