There are so many great things to do on a trip to Italy. So when you visit, you need a bucket list! Italy is one of the most culturally influential European nations and a must visit destination. Florence has Renaissance masterpieces; Milan is one of the main fashion hubs of the world and Venice is the floating city. Whether you prefer to explore beautiful Italian cities or lose yourself in the stunning scenery of Lake Como, Italy has something for everyone, especially the foodies among us (hello pizza, pasta and gelato). So without further ado, here is what we consider to be the top things to do on a trip to Italy, certainly worthy of a place on your Italy Bucket List anyway.
Here’s our pick of the top things to do on a trip to Italy
Cinque Terre (“Five Lands”) is a string of five centuries-old seaside villages on the rugged coastline of the Italian Riviera. These five villages are Vernazza, Manarola, Corniglia, Monterosso, and Riomaggiore. Monterosso, the most Northern of the Cinque Terre villages is the most visited, mainly due to its sand beach. Vernazza is one of the most picturesque. Corniglia is the quietest village mainly because it’s the most difficult to access. The stunning scenery and laid-back lifestyle of Italy’s Cinque Terre has made this small area a must-visit destination.
Set against the foothills of the Alps in northern Italy, Lake Como (aka Lake Lario) has a reputation as a playground for the wealthy. The beautiful scenery of Lake Como has enchanted artists and travelers for centuries. If you love dramatic Alpine views, opulent villas, romantic bougainvillea and lake side cafes, visit Lake Como!
The Grand Canal
There’s only one legendary canal in Venice: the Grand Canal! One of the most famous waterways in the world. The Grand Canal not only connects most of Venice’s top tourist attractions, it is one of its top attractions. Experience this stunning canal by foot or by boat. Take a Vaporetto (a water bus) and travel to the different parts of the canal or take a gondola for a more romantic ride.
Leaning Tower of Pisa
The Leaning Tower of Pisa is the freestanding bell tower of the cathedral in the city of Pisa and one of the seven wonders of the world. The Leaning Tower of Pisa is one of the most recognizable buildings on earth however it’s actually an architectural fluke and the result of an unstable foundation. The tower has been opened and closed several times to the public as it has been a struggle to assess whether it is safe or not. When the tower is open, you can climb up the viewing platform and see the city of Pisa.
An integral part of any trip to Rome is a visit to the Trevi Fountain and much selfie taking! Designed by Italian architect Nicola Salvi and completed by Giuseppe Pannini and several others Trevi Fountain is the largest Baroque fountain in the city and one of the most famous fountains in the world. Millions of people visit it every year to make a wish because legend has it, if you toss a coin into the fountain, good luck will come your way… which means you will return to Rome one day.
Pompeii was a large Roman town in the Italian region of Campania that was completely buried in volcanic ash following the eruption of nearby Mt. Vesuvius in 79 CE. This ancient city is located in the modern commune of Pompei near Naples in the Campania region of southern Italy. Explore the preserved site featuring the excavated ruins of streets and houses that were once part of a sophisticated Roman city.
Vatican City, a city-state surrounded by Rome, Italy, is the headquarters of the Roman Catholic Church. It’s home to the Pope and a trove of iconic art and architecture and is world famous as the centre of the Roman Catholic Church. Its Vatican Museums house ancient Roman sculptures such as the famed “Laocoön and His Sons” as well as Renaissance frescoes in the Raphael Rooms and the Sistine Chapel, famous for Michelangelo’s ceiling.
Valley of Temples
The Valle dei Templi is an archaeological site in Agrigento, Sicily. The Valley of the Temples (The Valle dei Templi) is certainly the most important testimony of the ancient, classical culture of Sicily. Visit this archaeological site to see one of the most outstanding examples of Greater Greece art and architecture and great views over the town.
Climb Mount Vesuvius
Mount Vesuvius is a somma-strato volcano located on the Gulf of Naples in Campania, Italy, about 9 km east of Naples and a short distance from the shore. It is one of several volcanoes that form the Campanian volcanic arc. Today, it is safe to climb the mountain, and you can even consider trekking to the crater which somewhat resembles the surface of the moon. You don’t need to be extremely fit to hike Mount Vesuvius, and the view from the top will make it all worth it.
The Coliseum is one of the most popular tourist attractions in the world, and a visit to Rome is incomplete without a stop here. Located just east of the Roman Forum, the massive stone amphitheater was commissioned around A.D. 70-72 by Emperor Vespasian of the Flavian dynasty as a gift to the Roman people. The highlights of the amphitheater were the gladiator matches that used to take place here and you can still sit in the stands and imagine being a part of the crowd and enjoying the barbaric acts that were once considered entertainment.
Other cool things to do on a trip to Italy
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There is so much more to see and experience in this amazing country. Plan ahead so that you can take your time exploring and be prepared to be flexible because sometimes travelers you meet along the way will have the best suggestions for undiscovered gems and awesome things to do on a trip to Italy.
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