Italy Travel Itinerary from a Destination Wedding Photographer
If you’ve been following me for a while then you know how much I absolutely love Italy; from the food, to the language, and the diverse landscape, what’s not to love?
Here’s the full itinerary for the 21 days I spent in Italy and keep scrolling for all the details:
- Florence (6 nights)
- Venice (2 nights)
- Verona (1 night)
- Parma (1 night)
- Cinque Terre (Monterosso) (2 nights)
- Florence (4 nights)
- Siena, San Gimignano, & Pisa (1 day)
- Rome (4 nights)
FLORENCE (Part 1)
Florence in my opinion has the perfect blend of history and museums, great restaurants, shopping and right in the heart of Tuscany for great wine. It feels like a city but not as massive as Rome. It has beautiful streets and neighborhoods but also great nightlife if you want to party. It really does have it all! I think you can easily spend a week in Florence and take some day trips to wineries in the Tuscan countryside.
Where we stayed:
I literally cannot say enough amazing things about this hotel. The staff were so sweet and accommodating, the breakfast was seriously a feast every morning and our room had a beautiful balcony and view. Its walking distance to the train station and right near Piazza Santa Maria Novella which has lots of great restaurants.
Osteria Belle Donne – Via delle Belle Donne 16R, 50123 Firenze (they have a wine window!)
Gustavino – Bisteccheria Fiorentina – Via della Condotta, 37 R 50122 Florence (get a Florentine steak)
Fontana Gelateria – Via delle Belle Donne, 41, 50123 Firenze FI, Italy
L’Osteria Dell’OK – via dei servo 97, Florence, Italy
Gelateria La Carraia – Piazza Nazario Sauro, 25/r, 50124 Firenze FI, Italy
There are so many amazing restaurants but these were some of the standouts!
Hike to Piazzale Michelangelo (especially around sunset)
Take a stroll through the Boboli Gardens
Pasta making class – booked through airbnb: PASTAMANIA
Tour of the Accademia (David) & Uffizi Gallery- booked through airbnb TOUR
This was my second time in Venice and I definitely think Venice is such a magical place that I think everyone should experience at least once. While most people do a day trip to Venice or only spend one night, we stayed for 2 nights and could have easily stayed for a few more. There are other islands to explore!
Where we stayed:
I didn’t love this room, it was big but felt very old and outdated. Honestly a little dusty too, but the breakfast was pretty incredible and the location was great. It was on a quiet street but really close to everything.
Hostaria da Franz (fish, gourmet)- Salizada S. Antonin, 3499, 30122 Venezia VE, Italy
L’Osteria di Santa Marina (fish, gourmet) – Campo Santa Marina, 5911, 30122 Venezia VE, Italy
Ristorante Casa Bonita (fish) – Cannaregio, 492, 30121 Venezia VE, Italy
Antico Gatoleto (pizza) – Cannaregio, 6055, 30121 Venezia VE, Italy
Birraria La Corte (pizza and more..) – S. Polo, 2168, 30125 Venezia VE, Italy
While you are in Venice I highly recommend that you try the seafood! It was especially nice coming from the heavy pastas of Tuscany to the fresh seafood of venice!
Took a boat to the Island of Murano known for its blown glass
Take a ride in a gondola
Wander the streets
Verona was absolutely so beautiful, it was the gem of our trip. I wanted to stay longer, probably next time I will stay at least 3-4 days and also go to Lake Garda. Lago di Garda is Italy’s largest lake and its full of beach towns. I will definitely go next time! a medieval old town built between the meandering Adige River. It’s famous for being the setting of Shakespeare’s “Romeo and Juliet.” A 14th-century residence with a tiny balcony overlooking a courtyard is said be “Juliet’s House.” The Verona Arena is a huge 1st-century Roman amphitheater, which currently hosts concerts and large-scale opera performances.
Where we stayed:
Residenza Bonifacio (we booked on Booking.com)
I almost don’t want to share this hotel, it is such a hidden gem. It was MY FAVORITE stay of the trip. This location was literally perfect, right in the center of everything and the room was so beautiful and comfortable. It was a medieval building but fully modernized, the building is from the 1820s. We stayed in the Romeo room.
Locandina Cappello – Via Cappello, 16, 37121 Verona VR, Italy
Gelato: Gelateria ballini – Via Santa Maria Rocca Maggiore, 4/A, 37129 Verona VR, Italy
Hike to Castel San Pietro
Visit Juliet’s balcony
Tour the Verona Arena
If Verona isn’t on your list, please I hope this encourages you to go ASAP!
Parma was such a random stop on this trip. Parma is a university city in Italy’s Emilia-Romagna region, famed for Parmesan cheese and Parma ham. So I think staying for one day is actually perfect especially if you’re really into food, if not then you can skip it!
Where we stayed:
The host for this bed and breakfast were so amazing, they even picked us up from the train station so we didn’t have to get a taxi. Seriously so sweet! Plus they had a great breakfast to send us off in the morning.
Ristorante La Greppia – Str. Giuseppe Garibaldi, 39, 43121 Parma PR, Italy
Ristorante La Forchetta – Borgo S. Biagio, 6/D, 43121 Parma PR, Italy
Ristorante Angiol d’Or – Via Scutellari, 1, 43121 Parma PR, Italy
Parma ham and Parmigiano Reggiano cheese Tour: Booked on Viator
CINQUE TERRE (MONTEROSSO)
Cinque Terre is considered part of the Italian Riviera. It literally means “five lands” and it makes up five small towns. Cinque Terre is a string of centuries-old seaside villages on the rugged Italian Riviera coastline. In each of the 5 towns, colorful houses and vineyards cling to steep terraces, harbors are filled with fishing boats and trattorias turn out seafood specialties along with the Liguria regions famous sauce, pesto. The five towns that make up the Cinque Terre – Riomaggiore, Manarola, Corniglia, Vernazza and Monterosso. For this trip we stayed in Monterosso because it is the only town that has an actual beach.
Where we stayed:
Manuel’s Guest House (we booked it on Airbnb)
This was seriously such a magical place, watching the sunset from this view with a glass of wine was something I’ll always remember. There was a lot of stairs to get to these views, but that is ANY place you stay in Cinque Terre. This place is family owned and I highly suggest you visit and stay here.
Torre Aurora – Via Bastioni 5, 19016 Monterosso al Mare SP, Italy (must make reservations)
Ristorante Miky – Via Fegina, 104, 19016 Monterosso al Mare SP, Italy
San Martino Gastronomia – Via San Martino, 3, 19106 Monterosso al Mare SP, Italy
In this region of Italy pesto, focaccia, anchovies, lemon in everything, and fresh seafood is the speciality, so try it all! We pretty much only stayed in Monterosso but I wish we would have went to more places!
Beach day at Monterosso
Take the train and go see each of the five towns
Aquamarina Boat Tour to see the towns by the water and go swimming
FLORENCE (Part 2)
We wanted to explore more of Tuscany so we went back to Florence. This time around we spent less time seeing museums and spent more time just exploring nearby Tuscan towns. Also during this time of the year it was a holiday. June 24th in Florence celebrates the feast of its patron San Giovanni with a series of events that include a parade and fireworks in the evening. It was so amazing and I’m really glad we spent so much time in Florence.
Where we stayed:
Alfani 2 on Airbnb
This airbnb was a cute one bedroom apartment right down the street from the Duomo, we literally could see it from our window. This was my husband’s favorite place of our stay, he said it felt like coming home everyday. I highly recommend this place, it was a little rough getting to the train station but still worth it for the perfect location.
Scroll back up to see Florence Part 1
Ebikes Florence Via S. Gallo, 97R, 50129 Firenze, FI (Highlight of our trip!)
Easily one of our top experiences was renting bikes and exploring the tuscan countryside in the picturesque town of Fiesole. Since the fourteenth century, the city has always been considered a getaway for members of the upper class of Florence and, up to this day, Fiesole remains noted for its very expensive residential properties, just as well as its centuries-old villas and their formal gardens. The city is generally considered to be the wealthiest and most affluent suburb of Florence. We are definitely planning to return the next time we come to Florence.
Siena, San Gimignano and Pisa Tuscany Day Tour and Winery visit booked on Viator
I’ve been to Rome before and while it’s not my favorite place to visit in Italy (there’s so much to explore), I think Rome is a MUST at least once in your life. So I wasn’t excited at first but I absolutely loved this visit to Rome! It really is a special city and you can pretty much walk everywhere.
Where we stayed:
Stylish in center Apartment booked on Airbnb
This one is hard for me to describe and give a full review. This airbnb was huge, especially for Italy standards. It even had a whole living room and kitchen. I absolutely loved the street and nearby restaurants. It just felt…weird like I just didn’t like the vibe. But that could just be me and if you go you might love it. The location was AMAZING.
Roma Sparita – Piazza di Santa Cecilia, 24, 00153 Roma RM, Italy (MAKE RESERVATIONS)
Ristorante i Vascellari – Via dei Vascellari, 21, 00153 Roma RM, Italy
Walk everywhere! We walked to the Vatican, Castel Sant’angelo, the Pantheon, Trevi Fountain, and the Spanish Steps
Colosseum, Roman Forum & Palatine Hill Guided Tour booked on Viator
If you’re wondering, am I going back to Italy? Absolutely! I try to get to Italy as often as I can with the next trip coming in July 2023. Would you like to get married in Italy? I’ll post some of my favorite wedding venues soon!
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