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Two Days in Florence Itinerary: San Lorenzo Market

2 Weeks in Italy: The Perfect 14 Day Itinerary

Italy

Italy is one of those countries that we just can’t quit–and we think after 2 weeks in Italy, you’ll agree.

After three (update: make that five) visits there, including a six-week stint this fall, our desire to return to Italy just keeps growing: there will always be more villages to explore, natural beauty to marvel at, and, of course, pasta and wine to enjoy.

For first time visitors, 2 weeks in Italy is the perfect amount of time to hit the country’s most famous and classic spots, see which ones you love, and (if you’re anything like us) fall head-over-heels in love with the country to the point that you’ll leave planning your next trip back.

Since this 2 week Italy itinerary is focused on first-time visitors, we won’t be straying off the beaten path much here. These first 14 days in Italy will be all about the classics–follow this trip and you’ll be spending a lot of time watching postcards come to life!

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The Perfect 2 Weeks in Italy Itinerary for First Timers

Rome: 2 Days

The Highlights of Rome

Rome’s highlights rank among the most famous sights in the world: who hasn’t dreamed of seeing the Colosseum in person, of walking across St. Peter’s Square, and of admiring the masterpiece that is the Sistine Chapel?

Two days in Rome will give you plenty of time to see the best of what Rome has to offer, while also leaving plenty of time in your 2 weeks in Italy itinerary for all of the other destinations along the way!

Things to Consider in Rome

Rome has two major downsides as a tourist: crowds and heat.

You can beat the bulk of both by traveling in the shoulder season (we went in the fall and loved it), and/or waking up extra early to enjoy the city before everyone else gets out of bed. For example, some of the best photos of the Trevi Fountain I have seen were taken around dawn!

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2 Days in Rome: Trevi Fountain

Where to Stay in Rome:

La Cornice Guesthouse — We loved this little guesthouse! It was extremely clean and comfortable, and VERY affordable for Rome.

La Cornice is set slightly outside the main tourist areas, but an easy 5-minute walk to the metro and 20-minute ride got us to the Colosseum and other major sights.

Our favorite part of La Cornice? Eating a nearby Joseph Ristorante for lunch, which we ate at several times on recommendation from the clerk at La Cornice. Just a 5 minute walk away, their lunch special offered a choice of about 10 main courses plus bread, wine, and one of several desserts for 8 Euros/person–it’s hard to beat that! The food wasn’t anything fancy, but it was very tasty and an amazing deal for the price.

We loved our time at La Cornice Guesthouse (and its reasonable cost in notoriously pricey Rome), and we would definitely stay here again.

Check rates & book your stay at La Cornice Guesthouse!

2 Days in Rome: Couple Inside Colosseum

2 Days in Rome: Vatican Museums Spiral Staircase

Cinque Terre: 2 Days

The Highlights of Cinque Terre

No first trip to Italy would be complete without a visit to this beautiful coastline!

After leaving Rome, head north to Cinque Terre for coastal views, hiking, adorable fishing villages, and plenty of fresh seafood.

Since five of the Cinque Terre villages are easily connected by train (or ferry during the summer!), feel free to stay in whichever one appeals the most, or even in nearby Levanto to save a tiny bit of cash.

Things to Consider in Cinque Terre

While it would be tempting to bring a car to Cinque Terre to have access to your own transportation and a more direct way to get to Cinque Terre from Rome and to Florence after your visit, the roads do not make for an easy drive.

Parking can also be a challenge around the villages–if possible, we’d recommend relying on the train or the’s famous trail to get around in Cinque Terre.

Keep an eye on closures to both the trains and the trails between the villages, however. Strikes can happen, shutting down the train (happened to us in May 2016!), and the trails can sometimes be washed out and therefore closed.

2 Weeks in Italy Itinerary: Vernazza, Cinque Terre

Where to Stay in Cinque Terre:

Of the five villages, the only one we would recommend not staying in is Corniglia, as it’s the most difficult to get in and out of. Other than that, all the villages have their perks–Monterosso al Mare has the biggest beach, Manarola has the most insta-famous viewpoint, and Vernazza and Riomaggiore are simply drop-dead gorgeous.

Here are a few very well-reviewed properties to consider during your time in Cinque Terre:

Scorci di Mare (Riomaggiore) — Want to stay a 3-minute walk from the beach and see the sea from your window? Scorci di Mare is the perfect spot for you. Riomaggiore is the smallest village in Cinque Terre, making it the perfect reprieve from busy days (and all the other villages are a short train ride away).

Check rates and book your stay at Scorci di Mare!

Da Baranin (Manarola) — Cinque Terre is expensive, there’s no getting around it. For a budget option, consider Da Baranin–you’ll need to climb up and down a steep hill as a trade off, but you’ll get to stay in Manarola for a very affordable price tag!

Check rates and book your stay at Da Baranin!

Ca de Lelio (Manarola) — With cozy, modern rooms and a great location in Manarola, Ca de Lelio will have you perfectly situated to explore the villages.

Check rates and book your stay at Ca de Lelio!

2 Weeks in Italy Itinerary: Monterosso al Mare, Cinque Terre

2 Weeks in Italy Itinerary: Beach at Monterosso al Mare, Cinque Terre

Florence/Tuscany: 3 Days

Highlights of Tuscany

Tuscany is one of our favorite regions in Italy–and not just because we could spend a lifetime eating and drinking there (though we could). The towns are beautiful and distinct, Florence is a dream of a city, the history is interesting, and the golden tinge to the light that you see in pictures of Tuscany isn’t photoshop–it just really looks like that.

While there’s no such thing as too much time in Tuscany, 3 days in Tuscany will give you a chance to explore the best of Florence in about 1.5-2 days, and also give you time to visit at least one other Tuscan city.

Pisa is a popular choice that is close to Florence, but unless you’re truly dying to see the leaning tower, we’d recommend Volterra, San Gimignano, Lucca, or Siena instead.

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Things to Consider in Tuscany

Three days in Tuscany gives you a couple of options as far as lodging: you can either stay in Florence the whole time and take day trips out, you can stay in a smaller city the whole time and simply take a day trip to Florence, or you can split it up–two nights in one city, and one in another.

Personally, we’d recommend sticking with one place to stay–this itinerary is already fast-paced, there’s no reason to take up extra time moving hotels.

We’ve visited Tuscany both ways: by staying in Florence and commuting out, and by staying near Lucca and commuting into Florence for a day trip. You truly can’t go wrong with either option–I’d stay in Florence if you’re more of a city person, and in a surrounding Tuscan town if you’re more interested in the countryside.

If you stay in the countryside, you will definitely want to rent a car for this portion of the trip.

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Where to Stay in Florence:

We have stayed in several places in and around Florence, most memorably the excellent Airbnb Apartment in the Heart of Florence during our month-long stay (if you’ve never used Airbnb, sign up with our link for a discount on your firsty stay!)

For shorter visits to Florence, we recommend staying a hotel.

Here are a couple Florence hotels that are similar to what we usually stay in (budget-to-mid-priced, in a solid-to-excellent location, well reviewed, and with wifi)t:

Bargello Guest House (9.1 rating on Booking.com) — Located in the heart of Florence, this property is only a short (read: less than 5-minute) walk away from some of Florence’s highlights like the Palazzo Vecchio. Staying here, you’ll be within easy walking distance of the best of what Florence has to offer.

Check rates and book your stay at Bargello Guest House!

Ghirlandaio Firenze Guesthouse (9.0 rating on Booking.com) — Housed in a 19th century building, this guesthouse is tucked away a bit further from the action than the other–which in Florence means that you’re still just a 15-minute walk from the Duomo!

Check rates and book your stay at Ghirlandaio Firenze Guesthouse!

Two Days in Florence Itinerary: View from Bell Tower

Romantic Things to Do in Tuscany: Tuscan streets in rain

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Venice: 2 Days

Highlights of Venice

Canals, canals, and more canals: Venice is simply a ridiculously beautiful place, and we loved every second of our time there.

Definitely make sure that you climb St. Marco’s Bell Tower for an amazing view of the city, check out Libreria Acqua Alta (one of our favorite bookstores in the world!), walk across the Rialto Bridge, and spend ridiculous amounts of time wandering aimlessly around the small streets and lesser-known canals–that is truly Venice at its best.

If you have good weather while in Venice, also consider a day trip out to the island of Murano or Burano for another view on Venetian life!

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3 Days in Venice in November: Grand Canal

Things to Consider in Venice

Especially if you’re visiting during the summer, Venice will be both crowded and expensive. It’s still absolutely worth it to go, but like in Rome, consider early wake up calls to get the most out of your experience. Some of our best memories of Venice are of walking through the city before the shops had even started opening–and we got some of our best photos then, too.

Keep in mind that if you want to take an iconic gondola ride, you’ll be paying a pretty penny–about $100 USD/gondola worth. We opted to skip the gondola ride and simply ride a waterbus through the Grand Canal for about $8 USD/person, which was more than enough time on the water for us.

If you have your heart set on a gondola ride, though, be sure to budget for it!

Where to Stay in Venice:

Hotel Casa Boccassini — This cute hotel easily met our needs in Venice! The room was simple but clean, and the shared bathroom a fair trade in exchange for their competitive prices in a great location. The bathroom was clean and we had a sink in our room, both of which always make shared bathroom situations much easier. The courtyard of the hotel was beautiful!

The hotel was a simple and beautiful 10-minute walk from the Rialto Bridge, and just a 5 minute walk to the airport water bus. We would definitely stay here again!

Check rates and book your stay at Hotel Casa Boccassini!

3 Days in Venice in November: Canal View

3 Days in Venice in November: Venice from San Marco Bell Tower

3 Days in Venice in November: Rialto Bridge Gondola

More time in Italy?

Italy has an endless amount of places to see, and no 2 weeks in Italy could dream of covering the whole country.

If you find yourself with more time in Italy, consider heading to the South Tyrol region to experience the Dolomites (also known as the Italian Alps). You could also head to Lake Como and stop off at Milan along the way.

Bologna, which is known as one of Italy’s great foodie cities, is another wonderful choice, and also includes the option of a day trip to the microstate of San Marino.

South of Rome, you could head to the incredible Amalfi Coast, and stop off for a day along the way to eat pizza in Naples.

Even with all that, you’re still barely scratching the surface of Italy (and of course every single one of the destinations included on this 2 week Italy itinerary could easily take up more time as well)–but that’s ultimately a good thing. There is always a reason to come back.

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Getting Around Italy

Trains rule on-the-ground travel in Italy: if you’re not going to rent a car, it’s likely you’ll be getting around Italy by train.

Every train we have taken in Italy has been comfortable and pleasant, but keep in mind that strikes can sometimes interfere with travel.

We definitely recommend booking your train tickets in advance–they do go up in price as the departure time gets closer.

For longer distances, you can also consider flights. Discount airlines operate throughout Italy–look for flights to and from Rome, Pisa, Bologna, Milan, and Venice.

2 Weeks in Italy Itinerary

When to Visit Italy

There’s no such thing as a bad time to spend 2 weeks in Italy–but some seasons are definitely more convenient to travel in than others.

Summer is the most popular season and will bring warm weather, lots of sunshine, and lots of tourists. Prices will be at their highest, but the beaches will be at their best–if you’re hoping to swim at Cinque Terre, you’ll want to plan a summer trip.

Winter is the offseason and will bring colder temperatures, rain, and gray skies. Prices will be at their lowest, and crowds will be as small as they ever get. The Christmas season can bring some increased crowds (particularly in Rome), but also the benefit of experiencing Christmas decor and markets.

Personally, our favorite times to travel to Italy are the spring and the fall: the crowds are less than in the summer, spring brings beautiful blooms, and fall brings the olive harvest (after tasting fresh olive oil in Tuscany this past year, I don’t know how we ever lived without it).

The weather is a bit riskier during the spring and fall than during the summer, but we have never had much of an issue with it–the occasional rainy or cool day is worth it to us for the tradeoff of not being hot and crowded.

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2 Weeks in Italy Itinerary: #rome #florence #tuscany #cinqueterre #venice #italy #travel

50 Comments Write a comment
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50 Comments

  • Lisa January 13, 2018

    I’m in Veneto, and so am biased about what I write about Italy. You covered some great places like CInque Terre and beautiful Toscana. I totally agree about heading to see the Alps, the Dolomiti is a must too. Beautiful photos to accompany the post too!

    • Kate Storm January 15, 2018

      Thanks, Lisa! We’re hoping to make it back to see even more of Italy in 2018–maybe we’ll make it to Veneto this time!

  • Jenn and Ed Coleman January 13, 2018

    Italy, why can’t I quit you… I have been reading about how dreary Italy can be in the winters. I think you are right that fall would be the best time to visit. I loved how clear all of your photography was.

    • Kate Storm January 15, 2018

      Thanks, guys! I know what you mean–we can’t quit Italy, either.

  • Nicole Anderson January 14, 2018

    A great article for first timer to Italy. I have sent this to my partner and I hope he reads it, I have dreamed of coming to Italy since I was a young girl. My parents went to Italy and always spoke of Venice and Muranos Island and of course glassware. Your photos are spectacular.

    • Kate Storm January 15, 2018

      Hope you get to make that trip happen soon, Nicole! Italy is as amazing as advertised. 😀

  • Neha January 14, 2018

    Italy is such a cool destination and this is the perfect guide to plan a trip in two weeks. I have been to Rome once and your pictures of Trivi Fountain is amazing as during my visit it was mainly crowded. Did you explore the islands near Venice too ?

    • Kate Storm January 15, 2018

      No chance to go to the islands, sadly–the weather didn’t cooperate with us too well in Venice. Hopefully next time! We’d especially love to go to Burano.

  • Iulia January 14, 2018

    I was actually wondering where you were off next, after reading your Rome post 🙂 although not a big fan of Italy overall, I am a huge fan of Tuscany… I only got to spend 2 days in Florence a few years back, so it is definitely on my travel list! Love your pics!

    • Kate Storm January 15, 2018

      Florence is definitely worth a return visit–the food alone would be, in our opinion! 😉

  • Lottie January 14, 2018

    I visited Italy for the first time last year, travelling to Rome and it was magical. The amount of culture is unbelievable, I would love to travel to Florence or Naples next time!

    Lottie

    • Kate Storm January 15, 2018

      I hope you get that return trip, Lottie! Italy never gets dull, that’s for sure.

  • Aditi January 14, 2018

    Your pictures are really enticing. A trip to Italy would be incomplete without taking up a culinary class or 2 in Tuscany. Cinque Terre looks particularly interesting too. Will get back to you for travel-planning. 🙂 Cheers!!

    • Kate Storm January 15, 2018

      You’re totally right, Aditi–our cooking class in Tuscany was one of our highlights of our month there this year! Food in general is such a big part of traveling in Italy, it really adds something to the whole experience.

  • Dada January 15, 2018

    I agree with you that one cant get enough of Italy…and this time I really mean it! So much cosy villages and site to explore…and not to mention the food! I have been to Italy many times before living in the country next to so I think you have chosen a great destinations for a two weeks itinerary for a first-timer! I hope to visit the northern and souther part of Italy this summer!

    • Kate Storm January 15, 2018

      Oh, it must be so much fun to live in Italy! I’m sure it comes with its challenges as well, like any destination, but if we could pick somewhere to live for a year, Italy would be VERY high on the list!

  • Archana Singh January 15, 2018

    Eat, Pray, love put Italy on my map. And, I am so glad it did. I really enjoyed my time in Italy. And, without knowing I almost followed your first-time visitor itinerary. The country is so beautiful that one time is not enough. I am aching to go back. Maybe this year it will happen.

    • Kate Storm January 15, 2018

      Hope you get to go back, Archana! No such thing as too many trips to Italy, right?!

  • Ami January 19, 2018

    A nice itinerary that you have suggested. Did all these except for cinque Terre. Wish someone had advised me then to do that. I hope to go back to Italy again to see this. Cheers

    • Kate Storm January 19, 2018

      Agreed–we hope we get to go again soon, too! 🙂

  • James February 20, 2018

    Hi Kate,

    Curious, how did you decide the order of your destinations? We’re doing 15 days in Italy and flying into Rome. We’re trying to visit Venice, Florence, Cinque Terre, Tuscany then Amalfi Coast before returning to Rome for our flight home. Any advice on the best order?

    Thanks!

    • Kate Storm February 20, 2018

      Hi James!

      We actually put this itinerary together based on a couple of months worth of travel in Italy, so we didn’t follow these steps exactly in order (though we’ve visited all of these destinations, some more than once!).For your trip, assuming you’re flying out of Rome as well, I’d personally probably structure it as: Rome to Cinque Terre, Cinque Terre to Florence/Tuscany, Florence/Tuscany to Venice, and Venice to the Amalfi Coast (you’ll need to stop by Rome again) before returning home.

      No matter what way you do it, you’re going to have a lot of travel time in there–you’re covering quite a bit of the country.Honestly, I’m tempted to say you should skip either Cinque Terre or the Amalfi Coast (the Amalfi Coast would make more sense to cut geographically, hence why it didn’t make this itinerary) and slow the pace a bit, but I know that’s much easier said than done–when you have a limited number of days, you want to see it all!

      Not sure how you’re planning on getting around, but I’d consider saving some time and flying from Venice back to Rome–budget airlines (including Ryanair) fly in/out of both those cities, and if you plan in advance, you may be able to get very low fares. Also consider booking any train tickets you need in advance–fares go up dramatically the closer your dates get.

      Hope you guys have an amazing trip! Italy is absolutely incredible. 🙂

  • AKSHAY March 5, 2018

    Hi Jeremy and Kate,
    Warm greetings from India. I discovered your blogsite recently and this is really amazing 🙂
    I wanted a favor from you guys, I will be travelling to Italy soon, for some office work in mid march. I will stay at Siena for 14 days. Can you please please please recommend me a travel plan or at least help me with details of rail travel?
    I intend to see Rome on one weekend, Venice and Milan on other weekend. I intend to travel Florence and Pisa during weekdays, when we get time off.
    I wish to hear from you guys…
    Love from India <3

    • Kate Storm March 7, 2018

      Hi, Akshay! That’s not a service that we offer, but I can say that we used Trenitalia for our train tickets and were very satisfied with them. I recommend booking as soon as you know your dates, because prices do get more expensive over time. I think seeing Venice and Milan in a single weekend will likely be too much–unless you’re dying to see Milan in particular, I’d recommend skipping it and heading right to Venice. Good luck!! Hope you have an incredible trip.

  • Christine Fieser March 6, 2018

    We leave for our first Italy trip next week! I am so excited! When we were first planning our trip we were trying to pack too much into 14 days. We settled on flying into Venice for two days, heading to Modena for two days, traveling to the Umbria region for 5 and ending in Rome where we fly out.

    • Kate Storm March 7, 2018

      Oh, that is so exciting! It’s definitely tempting to try to stuff too many destinations into too few days, but your trip sounds wonderful. I hope it helps you fall in love with Italy!!

  • Vicki K April 14, 2018

    Hello- We are traveling to Italy for first time in August 2018. Flying in to Venice and staying for 3 nights. Then to Florence for 4 nights, and on to Rome for 6. Flying back to US from Rome. Question– Should we decrease time in Rome to add 1-2 nights in Naples or Sorrento to see Amalfi Coast? We will do day trip from Rome –> Naples –> Pompeii, but just curious if we should try to squeeze in Amalfi Coast. Thank you!

    • Kate Storm April 14, 2018

      Hi Vicki! It’s hard to say without knowing your general travel style (how badly do you want to see the beach?), but our recommendation would be to stick with Rome for 6 nights, or to add on an additional night onto Florence and potentially use that as a day trip to Cinque Terre (you’ll need a car to do that, but it’s a shorter drive than Rome –> Sorrento). Good luck with your planning–your trip sounds fabulous!

      • Vicki K April 15, 2018

        Thanks so much Kate! The attraction to Amalfi Coast is b/c we have heard how beautiful it is- but it does does sound far for a day trip from Rome. I keep reading about Cinque Terre but we are not big hikers (knee issues…!). Would Cinque Terre be worth a day trip (train?) on the way to Florence from Venice? Thank you so much for your help! Vicki

        • Kate Storm April 19, 2018

          A day in Cinque Terre on the way to Florence, perhaps… but you’d need a whole day, and likely need to spend a night. There’s no direct train from Florence to Levanto (the larger village near the Cinque Terre villages), unfortunately, so traveling by train between the two without a car is harder than it appears looking at a map. Travel from Venice to Cinque Terre will likely take an entire day as well, but you could add one Cinque Terre day in between two travel days if you’d like! 🙂

          • Vicki April 27, 2018

            Kate, Thank you so much– this has been enormously helpful!
            I think we’ve decided to take the train from Venice to Florence, spend 4 full days in Florence and just explore that beautiful area. We know we need at least two full days in Florence, but welcome any/all suggestions about surrounding area day trips. Grazie!!

          • Kate Storm April 30, 2018

            Hi Vicki! Some of our favorite Florence towns include San Gimignano, Volterra, and Lucca–all great day trips. 🙂 Siena is also popular. If you have a car, there are natural hot springs in Tuscany that are supposed to be beautiful, but we haven’t made it there ourselves yet. Our “Romantic Things to Do in Tuscany” post has some great ideas as well–you don’t necessarily need to be traveling with a partner for them, either! 😉

    • LUcy giorgio-Pirkey July 7, 2018

      Vicki- who are you booking with. This is the exact trip myhusband wants but couldn’t find it.
      flying to venice for 3 nights, florence for 4 nights, then Rome.

      • Kate Storm July 10, 2018

        I’m not sure what Vicki is planning, but if you guys are planning the trip yourselves, I’d fly to Venice, take the train to Florence, and then the train to Rome before flying home. I’m not sure of any group tours that follow that route, though I’m sure they exist!

  • Dylan Wright May 3, 2018

    This post is a great guide for traveling through Italy. My friends and I traveled to Italy on a rented car and visited some of these places. I advise everyone to visit here!

    • Kate Storm May 5, 2018

      Thanks, Dylan! So glad you guys had a great time.

  • Maria May 10, 2018

    Parking can also be a challenge around the villages–if possible, we’d recommend relying on the train or Cinque Terre’s famous trail to get between the villages. And it is very good, because in Ukraine it is big problem!^(

    • Kate Storm May 14, 2018

      Yes, absolutely, but it can be convenient to drive to La Spezia and take the train into the 5 villages from there. 🙂 Easier than taking the train all the way from Florence for sure!

  • Natalie May 12, 2018

    This is amazing blog! My husband and I are traveling to Italy for our honeymoon in June. Could you guys shed some light on car rental and driving in Italy? Is it driver friendly with interpretable directions? My husband wants to bring a GPS – is this too ridiculous? Thank you!! Also, have you been to Capri?

    • Kate Storm May 14, 2018

      Hey Natalie! Congrats on your wedding–we got married 5 years ago this June. 🙂 🙂 Italy is reasonably simple to drive in when you consider the quality of the roads (decent) and navigation (decent). That being said, drivers are aggressive and driving in cities is a headache–at the very least, I’d ditch the car in major cities. Depending on your itinerary, I doubt you’ll need a car for your whole trip–I’d consider where it would be more of a hindrance than a help (basically any large city and any surrounding smaller cities/towns that you can connect to by train) and go from there.

  • Amanda Meyer May 23, 2018

    I am so happy I came across your blog! We leave 9/8/18 from California and arrive in Rome on Sun. 9/9 @ 6pm My initial thought was to take the fast train to Venice on Mon. 9/10 and then work our way down to Florence, CT, Rome.. but now i am wondering if i should fly to Venice on 9/10 after a good nights rest instead of train to save time.. its the same price! Or do you suggest head straight to CT from Rome, then on to Florence, Venice and fly back to Rome to finish our trip there?? I saw you suggested above to go to CT from Rome..

    I am trying to not overwhelm ourselves as i really don’t want to spend all my time on a train or stressed out.. But i feel like these are the 4 places we want to see this time around.. (i had to talk myself out of Amalfi, Lake Garda, etc.!.. i want to see it all!) Also, this will be our honeymoon! We will be there for a total of 13 nights.

    • Kate Storm May 24, 2018

      Hey Amanda! Congrats on your upcoming wedding!!

      September is the perfect time for a honeymoon in Italy, it’s one of our favorite months here. 🙂 I definitely understand the difficulty of cutting things down, lol–there’s never enough time!

      As far as starting in Rome or Venice, it’s mostly personal preference. I wrote the itinerary this way for two reasons: 1) most people fly into Rome, and 2) If I had to choose, I think Venice makes a better last destination than first. They’re both crowded and touristy, of course, but seeing the best of Rome requires a lot of effort and activities–the Colosseum, touring the Vatican, etc.

      Venice definitely has some great sights, but you could also spend a couple of days strolling aimlessly around the city while eating endless gelatos and still come away feeling like you “saw Venice”–in other words, it’s not as demanding as Rome IMO.

      Plus… after flying all the way from California, I’m guessing you’ll be ready to see Italy once you get here, not jump on another train/plane! But ultimately, it’s your call–I don’t think either direction would be a mistake.

      I do definitely recommend flying over train travel for the Rome to Venice route, as it’ll definitely save you time–anything that saves you time and stress on a honeymoon is a good idea. 🙂

  • Jeremy Stubson May 24, 2018

    Hi there, I am taking my wife for 2 weeks coming up next month. We are staying in Cortona, Italy in Tuscancy and making day excursions to Florence, Pisa and other towns within a day of Cortona. For the second week, would it be better to start off in Venice and make our way to Rome and/or Cinque Terre or do I see about a last minute cruise from Venice through the Mediterranean. Downside would be that we wouldn’t see as much of Italy. We don’t want to be on the go 24-7 but we do want to experience Italy. Your comments are appreciated!

    • Kate Storm May 25, 2018

      Hi Jeremy,

      Both of those options sound amazing, so it’ll really just be down to personal preference!

      I don’t know the cruise itinerary, but I would imagine that the cruise will focus more on natural beauty + beaches, and a a trip to Rome would be more focused on history (with still a sprinkling of beaches in that week if you hit up Cinque Terre).

      If this is your first trip to Italy, I personally would forgo the cruise to focus on Italy itself, but there is definitely no right or wrong answer to that!

  • Steve Frechette July 12, 2018

    Hi, Kate,

    Great advice and itineraries, thanks so much! We’re planning an 8-10 day trip to Italy during the last 2 weeks of August and are thinking Venice, Florence and Rome (not necessarily in that order). I’m wondering if it would be a better plan to split the time between Venice and Florence and plan to see Rome during a trip during a shoulder season (we also have 2 weeks available to travel after Christmas ). Your thoughts on whether to cut the itinerary to 2 vs 3 cities during the hotter “touristy” time of year? Thanks!

    • Kate Storm July 13, 2018

      That’s a tough question! Knowing you have another opportunity to travel after Christmas, I would probably lean toward cutting one city and sticking to two–it’ll be a more relaxing trip that way, and there’s more than enough to do in any two of those cities to keep you entertained for 8-10 days. I know it’s a hard call, though!

  • Roberta Berlin July 13, 2018

    Hello, it was nice reading your and other people’s ideas. We are going to be 71 and 72 this coming April-May when I am planning our trip to Italy. I have been before and love the trains and agree with all. But, dealing with luggage on trains is not the easiest especially as we get older. I need to book lodging before the flights and we have enough miles. If we take the train, are there taxis at all the stations to get us and luggage to where we stay? And, any idea how much or if they take credit cards like I know they do in NYC? He suggested driving for that reason, but I think finding parking with the lodging, or at the sights, would be the worse problem. Do you agree? I was thinking of mid May, but have read that May is pricey. Do you think late April is warm? I don’t want to lug jackets. My idea for 2 weeks: fly to Rome, 3 days; to Assisi, Perugio, Siena- find a place in either area for a day or 2; Florence, 3 days;Pisa 1 day; Cinque Terre/LaSpezia, 2 days; Venice -maybe drive thru Verona, 2 days.

    • Kate Storm July 15, 2018

      Hi Roberta! Yes, I can definitely see how the luggage on and off trains can be difficult. There are taxis at most of the stations, but they don’t tend to take credit cards. Uber is available in Rome, but no other city on your itinerary. I would say that driving is definitely more trouble than it is worth for larger cities like Florence, Rome, and Venice–you could consider driving to Cinque Terre, but you’ll likely just be leaving the car at the hotel the whole time.

      I’m not sure what your budget is, but some hotels will also offer an airport (and possibly train station?) pick up service–for a fee, of course, but they would be able to help with the luggage.

      Late April is a bit unpredictable with the weather–it may already be getting warm in Rome, but Venice will almost certainly still be jacket weather. You never know, though! We were in central Italy during late April this year (Bologna/Emila-Romagna) and we still wanted light jackets until around the beginning of May.

      Hope this helps! 🙂

  • David August 2, 2018

    Hey! Came across your blog and this is super helpful. Even reading through all the comments.

    My wife and I are flying into and out of Rome in September and have 14 days in Italy. We were thinking after arriving in Rome hopping on a train to Venice and staying there for about 3 and a half days then taking the high speed train to Naples and spending some time in Sorrento and that area for about 4 days and ending in a Rome for about 4-5 days. I’m not counting the days where it’s mostly traveling.

    Do you think this is feasible? Should we add a city worth seeing or is it too spread out to really enjoy it? We want to make the best of it since we may not get back there soon but I also don’t want us running around so much that it becomes in enjoyable.

    I appreciate your feedback!

    • Kate Storm August 3, 2018

      Hey David!

      It is feasible! You’ll be tired, but it looks like you have enough time to work with. If you have your heart set on those destinations, I’d look at a budget flight instead of a train for Rome/Venice and back–round trip fares can be quite inexpensive on discount airlines like Ryanair, and I know they have lots of flights between both cities.

      With a 14 day trip, I would personally be tempted to trim a day from each of those destinations and add in another city (Florence/Tuscany would be my personal first pick), but you certainly don’t need to, and you guys know your pace best.

      If you’re 100% sure on dates, I’d check on flight and train prices *now*–the high-speed trains that go between multiple regions of Italy (ie, the Rome–>Venice and Venice–>Naples trains) can be pricey, and the prices do increase as the dates get closer. With regional trains that stay in one area (just Lazio or just Veneto, for example), the prices are fixed and you can just buy whenever. 🙂

      Have fun!! September is a magical time to be in Italy, I’m sure your trip will be wonderful.

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