Here’s a list of the most amazing places to visit in Italy. It’s a great way to begin planning your perfect vacation here. And once you’ve finished reading this guide, we’ll provide you with different travel plans in Italy. That way, you can connect several of these fantastic places to create a truly unforgettable trip.
Here are some Best Places to Visit in Italy
When you think of Rome, you imagine famous places like the Colosseum, the Sistine Chapel, and the Vatican. This city has a history that goes back 28 centuries, which means it’s one of the oldest cities in Europe and one of the top destinations to explore in Italy.
This city has a great mix of old places, lovely squares and neighborhoods, amazing museums, and famous sites. If you’re visiting for the first time, Rome should be one of the top spots you visit. It’s a big and lively city, but most of the important places are close together in the historic city center.
The view of Rome from the Altar of the Fatherland | Best places to visit in Italy.
Must-See Things: The Colosseum, the Pantheon, Trevi Fountain, the Vatican Museums, and the Sistine Chapel, as well as the Borghese Museum. Take a stroll in the old part of Rome, check out Piazza Navona and Campo de’Fiori, and enjoy a nice dinner in Trastevere.
How Long Should You Stay in Rome?
If you’re in a hurry, you can see the main attractions in just one day, but it might feel a bit rushed. With two full days, you can visit the popular highlights we mentioned earlier. If you have more time, you can really delve into the lesser-known parts of Rome, try a food tour, and explore off-the-beaten-path areas.
Without a doubt, Florence (also called Firenze) is definitely one of the best places to visit in Italy. It’s known for its beautiful sights, such as the Duomo, the Ponte Vecchio, and the Uffizi Gallery. You’ll also find delicious food and great shopping here.
This city is where the Renaissance began, and the art museums here show how incredible it was. You can see famous things like Michelangelo’s David, the incredible Uffizi Gallery, the beautiful frescoes on the dome of the Duomo, and the statues in the historic city center. There are also towers to climb, delicious gelato to eat, and shops to explore, so you won’t feel overwhelmed by just museums when you visit Florence.
Florence | Best places to visit in Italy.
Must-See Things: Check out Michelangelo’s David, climb up the Duomo, take a tour of the Uffizi Gallery, walk on Ponte Vecchio, indulge in plenty of gelato, visit the rooftop bars and restaurants, and catch the sunset over Florence from Piazzale Michelangelo.
How Long Should You Stay in Florence?
You can see the main attractions of Florence in just one day if you rush, but it might be better to spend two to three days. That way, you can take your time and explore some interesting places that are not as crowded. Florence is also a great starting point for day trips to other beautiful parts of Tuscany.
Tuscany is one of the best places to visit in Italy, known for its beautiful hillside towns nestled among vineyards and rolling hills. It’s a stunning region that you’ll love exploring. You can plan to spend about a week in Tuscany. Staying in a lovely Tuscan villa and taking day trips to nearby towns. It’s a wonderful way to experience the charm and beauty of the region.
San Gimignano | Best places to visit in Italy.
Must-See Things: Explore the hill towns of Tuscany. Siena, which we’ll talk about later, is one of the bigger towns and a great place to start your Tuscany adventure. The top hill towns to visit include San Gimignano, Pienza, Montalcino, Montepulciano, and Volterra. These places are full of charm and offer unique experiences.
How Long Should You Stay in Tuscany?
If you have just one day, you can take a day trip from Florence and visit a few of the smaller towns in Tuscany. However, it’s better to have more time, ideally three to five days. So, you can truly enjoy and appreciate this beautiful region. You can stay in Siena or one of the smaller hill towns and take your time exploring Tuscany, including its wineries. It’s a great way to relax and immerse yourself in the charm of the area.
Siena is not just any hill town in Tuscany; it’s one of the best places to visit in Italy. It’s a wonderful city that deserves special recognition. Siena is like Florence but quieter and smaller. In fact, we liked Siena even more than Florence. There’s something about this town that captured our hearts, and maybe it will capture yours too.
Must-See Things: Take a stroll along the cobblestone streets, enjoy the view of Siena from the Torre del Mangia, explore the Siena Cathedral, and spend some time in Il Campo. These are the top experiences that you shouldn’t miss while visiting Siena.
How Much Time Should You Spend in Siena?
You can easily visit Siena in a day from Florence or Tuscany. However, if you have more time, it’s recommended to spend at least one night in Siena. This way, you can truly immerse yourself in the charm of one of the best places to visit in Italy.
5. CINQUE TERRE
The Cinque Terre is a really beautiful place in Italy. It’s known for five colorful and stunning towns that sit on the hills, right by the Mediterranean Sea. You can choose to hike or take a train to visit each town. It’s a truly gorgeous spot that you must explore while in Italy.
Riomaggiore | Best places to visit in Italy.
Must-See Things: Discover the five towns of the Cinque Terre: Riomaggiore, Vernazza, Monterosso al Mare, Manarola, and Corniglia. If you enjoy hiking, you can hike between all five towns in a single day. The more you hike, the more gelato you get to enjoy along the way. Finish your adventure in Monterosso and cool off with a quick swim in the Mediterranean Sea. It’s an incredible experience you won’t want to miss.
How Much Time Should You Spend in the Cinque Terre?
You can visit the Cinque Terre in a long day trip from Florence. But for the best experience, it’s recommended to stay at least one night (two or three nights is even better) in one of the five towns. With one full day, you can hike or take the train to visit all five towns. If you have more time, you can relax on the beautiful beaches or take a day trip to Portofino. It’s a fantastic destination and one of the best places to visit in Italy.
The Leaning Tower of Pisa is known all over the world. But is it worth visiting? We believe it is, but only if you are already in the area. Pisa is worth a short visit if you are traveling from Florence to the Cinque Terre. Take about two hours to take pictures (along with many other tourists) and maybe even climb the tower. It’s a quick and enjoyable stop to make on your journey. Plus, it’s considered one of the best places to visit in Italy.
Leaning Tower of Pisa | Best places to visit in Italy.
Must-See Things: If you’re not afraid of heights or feeling dizzy, one of the top experiences is to climb the tower. It’s an opportunity to enjoy a unique perspective and take in the view.
How Much Time Should You Spend in Pisa?
If you’re traveling between cities like Florence and the Cinque Terre, you can visit Pisa and explore it in about two hours. It’s a quick stop along your journey where you can see the famous sights and enjoy the atmosphere of the city.
Milan has some really cool things to see, like the Duomo, amazing museums, fashionable shopping areas, and even Leonardo da Vinci’s “Last Supper.” The city is going through a period of architectural rebirth, so it’s worth visiting, even if you only have a few hours to spare on your trip.
Must-See Things: Experience walking on the roof of the Duomo, admire Da Vinci’s famous “Last Supper,” and enjoy some shopping at Galleria Vittorio Emanuele II. These are the top experiences that you shouldn’t miss while in Milan.
How Much Time Should You Spend in Milan?
You can visit Milan for just one day or stay longer if you like. It’s a great city for a day trip if you’re traveling between other cities like Florence, Venice, Lake Como, or the Cinque Terre. Plus, from Milan, you can easily take a day trip to Lake Como. So, whether you have a day or more, Milan offers plenty to explore and enjoy.
8. LAKE COMO
Located at the bottom of the Alps, Lake Como is one of the most romantic places in Italy. It’s a serene spot where you can escape from the busy cities of Italy and enjoy a peaceful and romantic atmosphere.
Must-See Things: Make sure to visit the elegant town of Bellagio, explore the charming town of Varenna, take a scenic cruise on Lake Como to admire the beautiful villas, and don’t miss the chance to visit Villa Carlotta and Villa del Balbianello. These are the top experiences that you shouldn’t miss while exploring Lake Como.
Fun Ideas for Traveling with Kids: Rent a boat and take a fun cruise to see the villas on Lake Como. It’s an enjoyable experience for both kids and adults. Another exciting activity is riding the Funicolare Como-Brunate, which offers amazing views of Lake Como. Kids will love it!
How Much Time Should You Spend in Lake Como?
Lake Como is a perfect day trip from Milan. However, if you have more time, it’s recommended to spend the night in Bellagio. Once the day trippers leave, you can have a great time exploring the charming streets and enjoying the picturesque atmosphere.
Venice is one of the places we love the most in Italy. Why? Because it’s small and easy to explore in just a few days. Venice is romantic, rich in history, and absolutely beautiful. The canals, the gondolas, the unique architecture, and the colorful towns of Murano and Burano… there’s so much to love about it!
Venice is one of the best places to visit in Italy, and it’s often at the top of the list for many people who visit Italy for the first time.
Must-See Things: Take a leisurely stroll along the canals, enjoy a gondola ride through the city, visit St. Mark’s Square, cross the famous Rialto Bridge, and explore the Doges’ Palace and Saint Mark’s Basilica. These are the top experiences that you shouldn’t miss while in Venice.
How Much Time Do You Need in Venice?
It’s a good idea to spend at least one full day exploring the main attractions in Venice. If you have two to three days, you’ll have more time to visit places like Murano, Burano, and Lido, and also explore the quieter neighborhoods away from the busy tourist areas. This will allow you to have a more relaxed and comprehensive experience in Venice.
10. THE DOLOMITES
The Dolomites are sometimes forgotten by travelers visiting Italy. But guess what? The Dolomites are incredibly beautiful, and you can enjoy the stunning views even without hiking. Doesn’t that sound tempt?
We think the Dolomites are one of the best places to visit in Italy, and there are a couple of reasons for that. Firstly, it’s a paradise for hikers, offering amazing opportunities to explore. Secondly, the scenery there is absolutely breathtaking. So, if you love hiking and appreciate stunning landscapes, the Dolomites should definitely be on your list.
You don’t have to be a hiker to enjoy the beauty of the Dolomites. However, if you are a hiker, you’re in for a treat because the Dolomites are known worldwide for their fantastic hiking opportunities. Get ready to be amazed by the breathtaking scenery you’ll encounter here.
How Much Time Do You Need in the Dolomites?
If you want to go on scenic drives, take cable car rides, and do some hiking, two to three days would be a good amount of time. But if you really love mountain scenery and want to soak up the mix of Italian and Austrian vibes, you could easily spend a whole week here. We’ve personally spent 12 days in the Dolomites and can’t wait to go back—it’s our favorite spot in Italy. Take a look at our Dolomites Itinerary for some ideas on how to plan your time there.
11. LAKE GARDA
Lake Garda is the biggest lake in Italy. It has colorful towns, castles, and ancient Roman ruins. You can enjoy the beaches, visit vineyards, explore historical sites, and even have fun at amusement parks. There’s so much to do here that you can easily stay occupied for days.
Lake Garda is situated in the northern part of Italy, not far from Milan and Venice. It’s also close to the beautiful city of Verona, which is worth a visit.
Make sure to check out the charming small towns along the lake, go hiking in the area, take a boat tour, visit some castles, and don’t miss the cable car ride to Monte Baldo for breathtaking views of the surroundings.
Here are some must-try experiences at Lake Garda: Visit the town of Sirmione, where you can explore Scaligero Castle. Take a boat trip to Isola del Garda, a beautiful island on the lake. Spend an afternoon in Riva del Garda, another lovely lakeside town. Don’t forget to also visit the towns of Malcesine and Limone sul Garda, located right by the lake. These places offer unique sights and experiences that you won’t want to miss.
How long should you stay at Lake Garda?
If you want to see and experience everything this beautiful lake has to offer, it’s best to plan for at least three days. Lake Garda is quite large and there’s so much to do and see, so giving yourself a few days will allow you to explore it thoroughly and make the most of your visit.
12. EMILIA ROMAGNA & BOLOGNA
Emilia Romagna is a region in Italy, specifically in the northeastern part. It’s one of the 20 regions that make up the country. This region is known for being one of the richest places in Europe. It’s home to famous car brands like Ferrari, Lamborghini, Maserati, and Ducati.
But there’s a lot more to discover in Emilia Romagna than just fancy cars. You can enjoy the beautiful coastal resorts along the Adriatic Sea, explore eleven special places recognized by UNESCO as being important to the world, visit the historic city of Ravenna that was once the capital of the Roman Empire, and check out the University of Bologna, which is the oldest university in the world. Emilia Romagna is also known for hosting Ironman Italy, a big triathlon event.
Bologna is the main city of Emilia Romagna and it’s famous worldwide for its delicious food. Bolognese sauce, which you might know as spaghetti sauce, actually comes from here. They also have other special foods like mortadella, a type of sausage that started in Bologna, and tasty dishes like lasagna, tortellini, and tagliatelle. If you love food, Bologna is definitely one of the best places to visit in Italy.
Top Experiences: Enjoy lots of delicious food in Bologna, have fun at the coastal resorts, explore Ravenna, and go on a food tour in Parma.
Ideas for Traveling with Kids: Bring your kids to the fun coastal resort towns of Cervia, Rimini, and Cesenatico.
How much time do you need in Emilia Romagna?
It depends on what you want to do. If you have one day, you can visit Bologna and enjoy a food tour. If you have more time, you can relax on the beaches of the coastal resorts. To fully explore this region, plan to spend 5 to 7 days.
Sicily is the biggest island in the Mediterranean Sea. It’s a great place to visit in Italy because it has many wonderful attractions. You can see Mount Etna, which is one of the most active volcanoes in the world. There are also other smaller active volcanoes to explore. Sicily is known for its ancient ruins from the Greek and Roman times, stunning beaches, charming towns, and lots of castles to discover. Whether you’re looking for a relaxing beach vacation, a cultural experience, historical sites to explore, delicious food, or beautiful cities and towns to visit, Sicily has it all.
Top Things to Do: Go to the Greek Theatre in Taormina, climb Mount Etna, explore the Aeolian Islands, see the Temple of Concordia in the Valley of the Temples, visit Palermo (the capital of Sicily), and enjoy relaxing on the beautiful beaches.
Traveling with Kids: Kids will have a great time playing in the clear water of the beaches. If you have younger kids, you can take a cable car and bus to reach the top of Mount Etna. Older kids might enjoy hiking up Mount Etna, which is the highest active volcano in Europe.
How Long Should You Spend in Sicily?
At the very least, plan for three days to get a glimpse of what Sicily has to offer. In three days, you can explore the important historical sites, enjoy some beach time, and visit Mount Etna. However, if you have more time, it’s even better. Sicily has so much to see and do that you could easily spend 7 to 10 days exploring the island.