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Italy Travel Guide

Looking for an in-depth Italy travel guide?

Then you’re in the right place!

Italy consistently ranks high on the list of most-visited countries in the world, and for good reason. Between its incredible Italian food, rich history and culture, and gorgeous environment, Italy has so much to offer travelers.

Whether you’re looking to sail the Italian lakes and hike through the Tuscan countryside or just enjoy as much Italian cuisine as your stomach will allow, this guide can help you design the perfect adventure in Italy.

Now, there are a few destinations in Italy that you simply can’t miss.

The capital of Rome has been a hub for urban life for thousands of years. Where else can you enjoy a gelato right across from ancient Roman ruins like the Colosseum?

Additionally, the city has plenty of hidden gems to explore beyond the big-name attractions, like Museum Missionario di Propaganda Fide and other little churches and shops hidden in back alleys. You just have to know where to look!

The city of Florence, located in the heart of Tuscany, is renowned for both classic and modern art — including plenty of street art you can enjoy free of charge. You can even make some art of your own at a fresco workshop!

Up north in Milan, wander through a city that is a true mix of old and new. Roman ruins share space with Gothic cathedrals and modern architecture in this fashionable city.

There are also plenty of ways to enjoy Italy while getting a little off-the-beaten path.

In the small walled Tuscan town of San Gimignano, explore Medieval architecture and climb up the bell tower at Torre Grossa for a truly incredible view. The town is also home to plenty of boutique hotels with a local vibe.

From there, you can explore the rest of the region of Tuscany by bike or car, taste some local wines, and get a true feel for Italian life.

Oh, and you can’t miss the Amalfi Coast, one of the most gorgeous seaside regions in the world! Pro tip: If you enjoy being active, hike the Path Of The Gods and then end the day with some beach time and an Aperol Spritz in Positano.

After your Amalfi Coast adventure, spend time in the nearby city of Naples to explore the still-active Mount Vesuvius and savor a slice in the birthplace of pizza before taking a ferry to visit the island of Ischia for a few days of hiking, beaches, castles, and seafood.

Or, if you’re looking for a truly picturesque destination, head to Cinque Terre on the northwest coast. Go beyond the guidebook and visit the little seaside villages along the coast by hiking or by taking a boat — you’ll be glad you did!

Keep reading to dive into resources that will help you with planning a trip to Italy in Europe.

Note: This ultimate guide to Italy travel contains affiliate links to trusted partners!

Italy Map

Use this Italy travel map to begin planning your trip to this incredible country!

Italy map

Click here for an interactive Google Map version of the above graphic.

Top Italy Destinations

Looking for the best vacation places in Italy? These travel guides to Italy can help!

Tips About Italy

This Italy travel advice will help you plan the perfect trip!

Tuscany Travel Guide

You can’t go to Italy without visiting Tuscany. Learn why through these Italy travel guides.

Florence Travel Guide

Looking for a city guide to Florence as well as to learn about the best day trips from Florence? Check out:

Cinque Terre Travel Guide

If you’re looking for the best Italy places to visit you can’t miss Cinque Terre. Here’s why.

Rome Travel Guide

Rome is home to some of the best sights to see in Italy, which you’ll discover in these guides.

Best Italy Tours

Explore local culture with an Italy tour guide through these unique excursions:

  • Skip-The-Line Rome Colosseum Tour with Roman Forum & Palatine with 45′ Guided Tour
  • Ancient Rome City Tour
  • Cooking Class and Lunch at a Tuscan Farmhouse with Local Market Tour from Florence
  • Cinque Terre Day Trip from Florence with Optional Hiking
  • Capri and Blue Grotto Day Tour from Naples or Sorrento
  • Full-Day Prosecco Wine Tasting from Venice

Renting A Car In Italy

Need a rental car for your Italy trip?

Use Discover Cars to quickly compare your car rental options.

Their comparison tool does the homework for you, so there’s no need to have up 10+ tabs trying to figure out which company is the most affordable. Actually, you can save up to 70% using their tool!

Italy Train Travel

Getting around Italy by train, bus, or ferry?

Omio is a must! I use this tool for all of my public transportation needs, especially when traveling through Europe.

The site is straightforward and user-friendly — and you can pre-book your tickets in advance at a discount.

They even offer flight and car deals!

Italy Hotels

Click here to browse the best Italy travel hotels!

Prefer self-contained stays?

Click here to check out unique local rentals!

You can also use this map to search for local stays:

Italy Travel Insurance

It doesn’t matter if you’re traveling solo or with a group on an Italy tour. When visiting Italy — or any other country in the world — make sure to get travel insurance to protect your health and safety.

In my opinion, the best travel medical insurance for travelers is SafetyWing as they’ve got a large network and offer both short-term and long-term coverage — including coverage if you’re traveling for months as well as limited coverage in your home country).

Additionally, SafetyWing is budget-friendly and offers $250,000 worth of coverage with just one low overall deductible of $250.

With coverage, you’ll have peace of mind as you embark on your Italy travel itinerary.

Click my referral link here to price out travel insurance for your trip in just a few clicks.

Italy Travel Guide FAQ

Below, find answers to frequently asked questions about traveling in Italy.

Q: How much money do you need per day in Italy?

The average traveler spends about $150 USD per day in Italy on accommodations, food, transportation, activities, and more.

Italy is fairly backpacker-friendly and there are plenty of ways to save money on food and other travel expenses. Hostels abound in most cities and many offer free walking tours, which are also a great way to get oriented upon arriving in a city.

Tip: Since many restaurants charge an extra fee if you choose to sit and eat inside, consider grabbing some food to go and having a picnic. With all the delicious food available in Italy, you won’t miss out on the cuisine by eating al fresco.

Q: What are some travel tips for Italy?

There are lots of things to consider when visiting Italy, particularly for the first time.

For one, many cities and towns have been around for centuries and can be tough to navigate without a map. Make sure to download some offline maps before you head out. This is particularly helpful in cities like Venice, where the combination of twisty streets and less-than-stellar navigational service can leave you walking around in circles for hours.

There’s no need to buy water in most major Italian cities. Cities like Rome and Florence have clean drinking water fountains throughout where you can fill up a reusable bottle for free. There are even some natural sparkling water fountains around for those who need their fix of bubbles.

While English is widely spoken in major cities, you’ll want to learn at least a few Italian phrases, particularly if you’re visiting smaller towns. Not only will it help you communicate with the locals but it shows your respect for the people of Italy and their culture.

You will also probably visit at least a few churches during your time in Italy. Note that women are expected to cover their shoulders and legs inside churches, particularly at major religious sites like the Vatican. All visitors are expected to remove their hats, as well.

Covering up can be a challenge in the hot summer months, so packing a shawl or hoodie in your day bag to throw over your shorts or tank top is a smart idea.

Hungry? Make sure to spend some time trying traditional food in Bologna, the food capital of Italy!

Q: Is it safe to travel in Italy?

Italy is generally quite safe for visitors. Though crime rates are on the higher side than other European destinations, they have declined in recent years, and most tourist cities are even safe for those traveling alone (solo trip to Rome, anyone?).

The main thing to be aware of is petty crime. Pickpocketing does happen, particularly in tourist-heavy areas, so be aware of your surroundings, keep any valuables close to you and out of sight, and learn how to avoid pickpockets by wearing hidden-pocket clothing.

It’s also important to be aware of local laws. For example, drinking alcohol on the street is common in many Italian cities but public drunkenness can come with major fines.

Also, don’t forget to validate your bus, train, or metro ticket before you board. If you get caught without a validated ticket, you can face an on-the-spot fine.

Q: How many days do you need in Italy?

Most experts recommend spending at least 10 days in Italy to enjoy the major cities and top destinations like Tuscany and the coast.

You’ll need at least three days just to explore Rome since the city is chock full of historic sites, including the Vatican.

A two-week trip will allow you to visit a few more places like Pompeii and spend a bit of time on the Amalfi Coast. The length of your trip certainly depends on your priorities — and is the perfect amount of time for a fun-filled Italy road trip!

Q: When is the best time to visit Italy?

While the summer season (from July to early September) is a popular time for tourists to visit Italy, the weather is very hot.

Springtime (April through June) and early fall (mid-September through October) are a bit more pleasant and much less crowded. You’ll also find some better deals if you visit off-season.

Of course, Italy is lovely any time of year, and visiting in the winter has its perks, particularly if you’re looking to do some skiing in the Alps.

Q: How long can a tourist stay in Italy?

Most tourist visas will allow you to stay in Italy for up to 90 days without engaging in any professional activity during your stay.

Q: Do I need an Italy travel visa?

Travelers from the United States, the United Kingdom, Australia, Canada, Schengen Area member countries, and several other countries do not need a visa to visit Italy for a period of fewer than 90 days.

It’s recommended to view your country’s Italy International Travel Information page for the most up-to-date information on entry and exit requirements. You can also contact the Consulate General of Italy.

Q: Where is Italy?

Italy is located in southern Europe and is bordered by France, Switzerland, Austria, and Slovenia to the north as well as the Adriatic Sea, Tyrrhenian Sea, Ionian Sea, and the Mediterranean Sea.

Q: Are credit cards accepted in Italy?

Credit cards — particularly Visa and Mastercard — are widely accepted around Italy, though it is always wise to carry some cash for smaller establishments and in case of emergency.

Q: Can you drink the tap water in Italy?

Yes, it is safe to drink tap water in Italy unless otherwise noted in just a few areas of the country.

Q: What is the local currency in Italy?

The local currency in italy is the Euro (€).

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