Vacation in Italy: "Do you know the land where the lemon trees bloom?"
Italy is worth a visit, and not just for the blossoming lemon trees—Italy has a lot to offer at any time of the year. Whether you're traveling to Venice for Carnival, hiking through Cinque Terre in the spring, taking a summer trip to the beaches of Calabria, or spending the fall grape harvesting in Tuscany, you'll find Italy to be rich in worthwhile destinations.
It's no wonder Italy is a top European destination for so many Americans. World renowned for its fine wines, incomparable cuisine, action-packed cities like Rome and Florence, and gorgeous paradise island lke Sardinia, Italy packs a punch. With so many places to choose from, it can be hard to decide where to start your Italian vacation. To help you out, we've gathered our latest offers for your next trip to this Mediterranean wonderland.
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Beach vacations in Italy
Bordering the Mediterranean and the Adriatic, it's no wonder Italy's vast coastline offers some of the world's most idyllic beaches.
- Located in Sardinia, Cala Goloritzé is one of the region's most beautiful beaches and known for its limestone cliffs and soft sand. With crystal-clear water, the beach is excellent for snorkeling.
- Enjoy a canoe ride across the water, take a leisurely walk along the beach, or scuba dive when you visit Campus Beach in southeast Sardinia. The beach is also great for families because of its clean, warm, and shallow water.
- Acquafredda di Maratea Beach, on the coast of Maratea, features turquoise waters, dark gray sand, and rugged cliffs. Here, you can indulge in swimming, snorkeling, and exploring the area’s remarkable caves.
Holidays in Italy: General Information
Italy has almost 60 million inhabitants. The south and the Apennine mountain range, however, are much less densely populated than the Po Valley or the metropolitan areas of major cities such as Milan, Rome, and Naples.
The Italian territory stretches approximately 1,200 meters long and includes many different areas and vegetation zones. In the north, Italy is bordered by the mountain ranges of the Alps, in the west by the Adriatic Sea, in the south by the Ionian Sea, and in the west by the Tyrrhenian Sea. Italy includes the islands of Sicily and Sardinia, Ischia and Capri in the Gulf of Naples, as well as the Aeolian Islands and Elba Island off the Tuscan coast.
Top travel destinations in Italy
"The Boot" is full of sights from north to south - here is a small selection ofdestinations that you should not miss.
- The Cinque Terre ("Five Villages") in Liguria is a stretch of coast south of Genoa known for its cliffs and tranquil, car-free villages. Especially in the off-season, the villages between Riomaggiore and Monterosso are worth a visit. In peak season, however, it can be very crowded on the romantic paths between the villages.
- Tuscany is one of the top areas for a vacation in Italy. The Renaissance cities of Pisa and Florence draw in thousands of tourists every year.
- Calm, but still worth seeing is Umbria. The center is the university city of Perugia.
- "La Rossa, La Grassa, La Dotta": Bologna is still an under-the-radar destination, but it likely won't stay that way for long. "The Red" (for its red-tiled roofs), "The Fat" (for it's famed cuisine), and "The Learned" (for its university) city has Renaissance palaces, art collections and amazing food.
- The shallow beaches of Veneto attract mainly families. From Bibione and Grado you can combine beach trips with a visit to Venice.
- Venice! If you have never been there before, you should get there soon—gorgeous Venice is slowly sinking. Our pirate tip : Venice is beautiful even in winter, perhaps more beautiful than in summer. On the main island, there are 17th-century palaces that have been converted into hotels that are not unreasonably expensive, like the Hotel Marconi on the Grand Canal. You should try to get up early and discover Venice before the rest of the city awakens.
- Rome, the eternal city! There is so much to see here, including the Vatican, the Roman Forum, and the Colosseum, that its impossible to produce an exhaustive list.
- The Italian south begins with Naples, the islands of Ischia, Capri, and the Amalfi Coast. Here is where the lemons bloom!
- The picturesque bays and shores of Calabria are among the most interesting views Italy has to offer. Here the beaches are not overcrowded and trattorias offer authentic cuisine.
And then there are Bari and Puglia, Palermo and Sicily, Cagliari and Sardinia...the list goes on forever!
Holidays in Italy: The best times to travel
If you want to experience the warmest weather in Italy, summer is the obvious time to travel. However, the weather is arguably even better in the spring and autumn, when the reduced heat makes sightseeing more pleasant. Winter is the only time one should be more wary: although the weather is still beautiful in the south, simpler accommodations may not be as well-heated as those in the north. Many holiday areas empty out and the hotels shut down during the coldest months. At the same time, a city trip to Naples or Palermo is particularly attractive in winter.