Experience Italy: 8-Day Robust Itinerary For You!
It’s no secret: I LOVE ITALY! Having traveled the world far and wide, it still remains my favourite country on earth. So it’s only fitting that I create a post that walks you through some of the incredible experiences this country has to offer!
Having spent the last 3 summers in Italy, it is slowly feeling like home. Because of this familiarity, I planned a family vacation to Italy. I was thrilled to invite my mom, aunt and uncle to enjoy the amazing places that make it my favourite country in the world. It was also awesome playing tourist for 8 days, revisiting all of the sites that helped me to fall in love with this country 3 years ago.
A necessary disclaimer: While I share our specific itinerary, there is still so much more to see in Italy. If you have more time… my suggestion is to definitely visit the South, as well!
My incredible assistant, Andie, specializes in travel and helped me find the most amazing accommodations and lovely tours for our trip. She worked within our preferences and budget and gave us great options. We LOVED all the places we stayed in and I have linked them, along with our itinerary outline below. If you need support in planning your next vacation, feel free to email her at: firstname.lastname@example.org.
DAY 1 - ROME
We started our adventure in Rome as it was an easy flight for my family to get to! Our Apartment in Rome was just breathtaking. It was a 2 bedroom, 2 bathroom Airbnb and had a kitchen so we were able to save money and make breakfast! The host was lovely and gave us complimentary wine and treats.
We had only had the second half of the day to explore Rome so we decide to head right to the Colosseum for a tour. Now while tours aren’t really my thing, it was important that my family learned the rich history of the Romans! And this tour provided just that.
We made our way to my favorite area in Rome (and where I often base myself there) and had Dinner in Trastevere. Trastevere is incredible as it has nightlife, bars, awesome gelato and a beautiful summer night market- all of which we enjoyed after dinner!
DAY 2 - ROME/ VENICE
We enjoyed breakfast at our amazing Airbnb the next day (which is something I always recommend you do in order to save on costs and remain healthy.) Then we opted for a free walking tour to learn more about Rome (where all you have to do is tip your guide). The free/tip walking tour requires reservation!
After our walking tour, we headed to the train to check out our second city... Venice! My family just loved going on the train in Italy, it was a joy to see! I love the Italo Train while being in Italy, so I often choose it for transportation between cities. When we arrived to Venice, we took the water bus to our incredible Venetian Apartment found on Airbnb and then enjoyed dinner by the water.
DAY 3 - VENIcE
Because we booked another Airbnb, we enjoyed breakfast at our place. Then, made our way to our first tour .... A walking tour followed by a gondola ride.
I find Venice so incredibly fascinating, the history, the architecture, the infrastructure (the entire city is on water).... so I found it necessary to do another tour with my family so they could learn about it. This tour is long, but so worth it!
We then wasted the rest of the day shopping and ended with another glorious dinner by the water... followed by gelato :)
DAY 4 - VENICE/FLORENCE
While Venice is BEAUTIFUL and everyone should definitely experience it, it is very expensive-ha! So we opted for only a few days in this glorious town and then packed our bags and headed to my favourite region - Tuscany! Tuscany is where I often choose to base myself when in Italy. It’s the region I’m most familiar with - so it was important to me that I showed my family an incredible time here. We had also been on the go quite a bit, so this would be an opportunity for some downtime!
We had lunch at the train station and headed on a a quick train ride to Florence. Our Airbnb was MAGICAL! Modern sleek designs, right in the heart of Florence, and had a lift (very uncommon in Italian apartments).
It was important to be central so my family could go off and explore and feel safe and secure while doing so! I warn you though, if you choose to stay central it can get noisy at night. So I was sure to pick up earplugs in the event people got rowdy and I wanted to sleep!
The first day in Florence we just got familiar with the city, walked around and of course... shopped! So much shopping in Florence, and my family loooves to shop. So much of our time here was to get them goods!
Day 5 - Florence
You may have noticed that one of my passions is wine, haha! So it was imperative I showed my family the wine region of Tuscany. This Tuscany Tour with lunch in the Chianti region was one of the best I’d done yet! So much wine, great food, and good variety of options including a big popular winery and then a more local intimate winery to enjoy.
We also got to stop at a beautiful village which was great for my family to experience. Very local and charming! This day was full! And we got a little tipsy with all of the wine tastings, so after this long tour, we just headed back to our apartment and slept the night away.
*Mini Disclaimer - Now, we only had one day to explore greater Tuscany. But given it’s my favourite region, I’d be remiss not to share with you some of my other favourite towns I’ve visited over the years. So if you have extra time in your schedule, I highly recommend:
Montepulciano (for wine and food)
Siena (for wine)
Sansepolcro/Afghani (just the cutest villages)
Saturnia (hot springs!)
DAY 6 - FLORENCE
We had planned a full Day 6, filled with museums, and more exploring.... But my family was pretty exhausted so we opted to stay in, watch movies, and just enjoyed a nice dinner (and gelato) in the area. Honestly, I have learned that a vacation doesn’t feel like a vacation unless you have some truly quiet days, so, I am happy to just go with the flow and rest when I feel the need.
However, for your reference, the plan *was* to visit Giardino delle Rose & Piazzale Michelangelo for the view (which is free). And then we were to get a combo ticket for Uffizi, Boboli Gardens, Pitti Palace. We had also set intention to visit the Florence Museums.
Day 7 - Florence
This is where I empowered my family to get out and explore on their own (and to be honest, I had to work! Haha.) So they just walked around Florence, enjoyed shopping in the local markets, had the world’s greatest panini, and enjoyed some of the local street statues and installations.
They aren’t huge travelers and aren’t very comfortable in foreign places... so it was nice to encourage them to get out and challenge their fears. So awesome to see! This is another reason why I was adamant in staying central so they would feel super comfortable.
If this is too much free time for you, I’d recommend filling this space with a free walking tour to learn more about Florence’s history. I’d done this in the past, but at this point my family was so “toured out”... they preferred to just explore on their own! And I don’t blame them, Florence is massive and robust so there was no shortage of things to do!
DAY 8 - FLORENCE/ROME
It was our last morning in Florence, so we got up early, made breakfast and took a train back to Rome where they were flying out the next day.
We enjoyed a quick lunch in Rome, the. Dropped our bags at our Suite. This was more hotel style - not fabulous - but did the job and matched our budget. We really just needed a place to rest our heads given we had a full day ahead of us!
One of the most epic things to do in Rome is to explore Vatican City. We did a Tour- Vatican, Sistine Chapel, and the Basilica. Now, I warn you - it’s TOURISTY. I’ve been twice and I’m not sure there’s a way to avoid it - but it’s a must In my eyes - especially if you’re religious/spiritual. You learn this history and the beauty is just... breathtaking. But bring your deep breathing techniques because the crowd alone can be frustrating! And in the summer it is HOT - so bring a fan! We wrapped up this day by packing and eating a local dinner.
This concludes our time in magical Italy. There is really no place like Italy, even with this robust itinerary, there is still so much I could share, which I why I love this country! Each city/region has its own personality, cuisine, culture, and vibe; so much so, it feels like a new country!
Perhaps my next post on Italy will be about the South, because I love it there and have so much to share! So stay tuned!!
For the last 3 years, I’ve spent a portion of my summers in Italy. It grounds me and just makes me so happy. In a hyper-focused, overachieving world, Italy constantly reminds me to slow down and simply enjoy life - To eat the pasta, have the gelato, drink the wine, and take the siesta.
Each summer I spend here, I’m reminded of this - I highly recommend adding it to your list