As an Italy Trip Planner for The Roman Guy, I receive a lot of questions about planning a trip to Italy. As well as questions, I get an insight into our clients worries and fears when organizing a trip abroad. We’ve collected the top questions and paired it with information and recommendations to make sure your trip to Italy is a success!
What are the top destinations in Italy and how many days should I visit for?
Our clients top destinations are Rome, Florence and Venice – The holy trinity! For people staying longer than a week, usually we add the Amalfi Coast in there too.
You can come to Italy multiple times in your life and still find yourself discovering new places, seeing completely different landscapes and trying new local specialities. For a first timer wanting to see a good variety of Italy, I would say 10 days is a good amount of time to appreciate the highlights. For second timers, I would say even longer, maybe 2-3 weeks. There are so many off the beaten track things to do and see in Italy, that there there will never be enough time to see it all!
What time of year is best to visit Italy?
This depends on what you want to do; if you like to relax on the beaches of Amalfi, Sardinia or Sicily, than June/July would be best. If you want to do more city sightseeing, I wouldn’t suggest July or August as the cities get awfully hot. Stick to Spring or Autumn.
In my personal opinion, I like April and October. I would recommend these two months to explore Italy as the temperature is usually very nice without rain. Blue skies mostly all month, perfect for sightseeing!
Is Italy expensive?
The Bel Paese is usually considered as being expensive (especially compared to nearby European countries) but as Italy trip planners, we know the best ways to stay within a certain budget, big or small. There are many ways to experience this beautiful country on a budget. Here are some tips:
- If you want to save money on accommodation, it’s worth staying a little out of the city center. When I visited Venice, I stayed in Mestre, a 10 minute tram ride away from the Island of Venice.
- In Rome, if you want to spend more of your budget on experiences rather than transport, there are regular trains from the center of Rome to the airport that take around 30 minutes, with a single ticket costing you less than 15€.
- By living in Rome and exploring Italy for many years, we have found the best restaurants to recommend and even book for you! But that doesn’t mean you’ll have to spend a lot of money. We know some great places to get some amazing food to keep you going. Usually Romans eat “Pizza Al Taglio” which is pizza by the slice and you pay by the weight. We also know a great little place that offers 100 different types of Tiramisu!
Is Italy safe?
Like any country, there are parts that are less-safe than others but on the most part, Italy is a safe country. Venice is usually very safe, even for solo travelers. I would say the same thing for Florence too, just be careful while in and around the train stations. Rome used to be safer than it is nowadays. I would say there are more opportunists now, so keep your belongings safe and you should be fine.
- Keep your cameras and phones hidden away
- Keep your bag close to you and in front of you, especially on the train, metro and tram.
- Be aware of pickpockets in crowded places.
Do Italians speak English?
They try. Meaning overall, not many people speak good English like other European countries but they do get by! Many Italians understand and speak basic English, especially around key tourist sights.
It’s always good to learn some Italian phrases to get by during your holiday. We’ve got a series of Italian Language tips coming soon… Stay tuned!
Where is the best food in Italy?
Obviously Italy is famous worldwide for great food. Italians really do cook and eat very seasonal foods, but no matter what time of the year, you will always be fully satisfied…if you go to the right places of course!
Every region you go to will have completely different specialties – some are not well known internationally but are equally as delicious. Many worldwide favorites such as Lasagna come from the region of Emilia Romagna whereas the most famous of all, Pizza, originates from Naples. Rome also has some great food like Carbonara and the extra special snack, Suppli!
Many Italians say that Sicily has the best food of Italy, and I must say, I agree!
Should I get a bus, taxi or private transfer to/from the airport?
Firstly, I would always suggest booking a private transfer. Why? Well with a private transfer, you don’t have to worry about trying to speak Italian or being overcharged.
Our drivers, will wait for you at your accommodation, ready to take you to the airport in style. Your arrival and departure days are usually the most stressful days of the trip, so eliminating this is a big plus!
If cost is an issue, taking a coach service or direct train will save you money but not necessarily time. If you’re running late, the fastest way to get to Fiumicino airport from Roma Termini is the Leonardo express train. It runs every 15 minutes, the train ride is only 32 minutes and a single ticket costs 14 euros.
Is it a good idea to rent a car in Italy?
If you feel comfortable driving, we would definitely recommend driving in the Tuscan countryside as it’s a great way to get around, exploring small villages along the way while enjoying the scenic views. However, if you want to sip a few glasses of local wine, we’d say leave the car and book a private transfer.
I wouldn’t recommend renting a car or scooter around Rome. The city is full of drivers, of which many do not drive in the law abiding way! It’s also hard to find a parking space. Instead, you can walk around most of Rome’s center and for further distances you can use the tram, metro or bus.
Do you recommend staying in a hotel or apartment?
We work with some great hotels around Italy and they have all been tried and tested by at least one Italy trip planner. However, if your group is of 5 people or more, we would suggest you book an apartment, as it usually works out more cost-effective.
Trip Planning Services
Our Trip Planning department at The Roman Guy , offers the chance to experience things the usual tourist wouldn’t even think possible! We take away the stress and worry and replace it with an organized trip of a lifetime.
When we asked our previous clients their favorite part of the trip, this is what they said:
“Rome and the Vatican tour. Also the hotel in Rome was terrific – really 1st class-location, rooftop bar and restaurant, breakfast spread, our hotel room and their staff.”
“Far too many to list. We enjoyed seeing all the places we visited. Easier to answer is where would we return to! Assisi, Rome, Pompeii and Herculaneum.”
The Limoncello day in Sorrento was the best. The family, the cooking class and the farm tour were terrific.
- We hope our FAQ has helped you with planning your Italy vacation, if you have any more questions, feel free to comment below.
- If you want help planning the ultimate Italy vacation, check out our Italy Trip planning page here or get in touch by sending us an email to [email protected]
- For more Italy Travel Tips, check out our Facebook, Instagram and YouTube.