It may seem daunting, but we have tools to make your travel planning as smooth as an old Barolo. A timeline tells you what to do when, Cost gives you tools to determine the current prices of lodging, fuel, airline tickets, and food. And don't plan too much or you'll miss the unplanned pleasures of Italy.
Use the drop down list on the right in the toolbar to see maps and travel guides to each region of Italy we cover. Our hand drawn maps clear the clutter to let you focus on the best destinations in Italy. Interactive maps like our distance map let you calculate how far apart the things you just have to see are.
Italy offers a variety of options for spending a day or a week or more. Some prefer hotels for the level of service. Others like a vacation rental to test what it's like to live like an Italian or to accommodate family and friends. You might also like a farm stay in an agriturismo.
La Cucina Povera gives insight into the clever cooking of Italy's rural poor, and the Industrial Crap Food trying to displace it.
Here we present little-known bits of Italy to explore, not "how to spend a week in Rome". You can discover the valley that forms Italy's first UNESCO World Heritage Site, for example, the Valcamonica, with Italy's largest collection of rock engravings--or you can discover the treasures along a Roman road in Puglia.
If you're the curious type you'd want to know about Italian culture and history and how it differs from yours before you take that Italian vacation. Along the way you might wonder how art and cucina povera go together, or what glorious festivals Sardinia offers, or how Padua brought medicine into the modern age.
I've spent 40 years wandering Italy and I still can't tell you the "best" place to go. But I can tell you what's popular on the site. In the number one position is the Cinque Terre and the hiking trails, second is Rome, and for the moment the regions of Puglia and Tuscany follow as you might expect.
There are things you can do in Italy that you might never imagine you can do. Ever think about getting your donkey driving license? Did you know you can ride old rail tunnels along the Italian Riviera coast? Are you aware of the Cultural Anthropology of gleaming white Italian tablecloths?
Everyone's heard of "Italian food" but in reality it's all a regional and local cuisine. We've never tired of the many variations. Did you know the food you're offered can get better if you order the local grub and interact with the waiter? Have you ever tasted REAL artisan olive oil? The taste may floor you.