Italy Travel Guide

Italy’s great food, long history, beautiful architecture, and stunning countryside make it an irresistible destination for any traveler.

Cities in Italy run offer everything from ancient history and ruins in Rome, to Renaissance art and architecture of Florence, to intrigue and romance in the canals of Venice. 

Beyond its cities, Italy is also home to some of the most beautiful natural scenery in the world, from the rolling hills of Tuscany’s wine country to the clear alpine lakes in the north like Lake Como, Lake Garda, and Lake Maggiore.

Italy quick facts

  • Population: 60.5 million
  • Language: Italian
  • Currency: Euro (EUR)
  • Capital city: Rome
  • Country size: 116,000 square miles
  • High season: Summer (June through September)

Top 10 things to do in Italy

  1. Explore Rome’s ancient ruins like the Colosseum
  2. Toss a coin into the Trevi Fountain (it means you’ll return to Rome someday!)
  3. Get lost exploring the canals of Venice
  4. Attend the famous Carnevale festival in Venice
  5. Visit the colorful cliffside villages of Cinque Terre on the Ligurian Coast
  6. Eat and drink your way through the towns of Tuscany 
  7. See the ruins of Pompeii, preserved after the eruption of Mount Vesuvius
  8. Enjoy Italy’s food capital Bologna in the Emilia-Romagna region
  9. Hit the beach at Positano on the Amalfi Coast
  10. Relax on the shores of Lake Como in the foothills of the Alps

Getting around Italy

The best way to get around Italy is via its extensive train network. The main train operators are Trenitalia and Italo. Trenitalia operates the high-speed Frecciarossa train, which connects most major cities in Italy. Both train lines operate slower regional trains as well.

Within cities, public transportation is widely available – even in Venice, which operates the vaporetto water bus system throughout the city’s canals! In more rural areas, public transportation (usually buses) is also a viable option.

Another way to get around Italy is by renting a car, although this is typically a more expensive option than taking the train, and Italian drivers are notoriously aggressive. 

Where to stay

Rome

Venice

Florence

Posts about Italy

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  1. […] was a common complaint I heard from people who were traveling in Italy the same time that I was. And it’s true — the Vatican Museums are massive, and have a […]

    Photos are awesome! I just found your blog today. I read your blog about The Rocky Mountaineer Train.