Italy is the perfect place for a romantic trip and is one of the top romantic destinations most people think of.The country is synonymous with romance, delicious food, luxury hotels, spectacular views of the Mediterranean sea and lush hillsides, ancient ruins of the Roman empire, and small towns with lots of history.
Planning a honeymoon or romantic getaway? There are so many romantic places in Italy it’s hard to know where to start. Here is a look at a few of them to get you started.
Venice Is The Perfect Location For Couples To Start
No list of the most romantic cities in Italy would be complete without Venice. With its small canals, winding streets, and picturesque squares and churches, the city is absolutely magical.
Venice is filled with countless sightseeing options — from historic buildings to learning the Italian art of Murano glass-blowing – ir offers a lot for a city built on the water. The sidewalk cafes are ideal for long, romantic meals. The canals in Venice, along with its famous bridges, have long and storied romantic history. While the Grand Canal is certainly impressive, there are plenty of smaller canals and streets worth exploring, s don’t be afraid to wander away from the city’s historic center.
And, after a long day of sightseeing, the perfect romantic end to your day is a moonlit gondola ride along the Venetian canals. Touristy? Sure. But it’s a quintessential Venice experience.
Note: Venice is suffering from major over-tourism issues. Consider how your visit can be done in a sustainable way.
Positano On The Amalfi Coast For Incredible Views
Celebrities and the elite flock to the Amalfi Coast for weddings and romantic getaways. That’s a telling sign.
The small town of Positano is built on the hillside of the Amalfi Coast and the sleepy fishing village is a wonderful choice for a romantic getaway. You may recognize it from the romantic movie, Under the Tuscan Sun (2003) as well. While Positano may be the best known of the towns on the Amalfi Coast, don’t overlook the others.
A few suggestions.
- Tramonti is quiet and rural, and has plenty of vineyards to visit.
- Ravello is located in the hills and offers beautify views of the coastline.
- Atrani is a small coastal town known for its beautiful beaches.
- Amalfi is home to the Duomo complex (cloisters, crypt, museum, cathedral) and claims to be the birthplace of limoncello.
- Praiano is located on a cliff overlooking the Tyrrhenian Sea, and it’s exclusive beach hotels and resorts make it popular with the rich and famous.
- Sorrento is the gateway to the Amalfi Coast and makes a good home base for visits to Capri and Pompeii.
Positano is also located relatively close to popular sightseeing destinations like Naples and Pompeii, giving you the ability to take in some historical sights. Of course you may want to just wander the narrow streets, sip a limoncello, or lounge on the beach. There’s nothing wrong with that!
The best time to visit the Amalfi Coast is just out of the main tourist season. High season, the summer months, are packed and chaotic, but the shoulder season (May and June in the spring, September and October in the fall) are much more enjoyable.
Bellagio And Lake Como For A Romantic Vacation
Lake Como is another retreat for celebrities and other wealthy people. While it can definitely be expensive and upscale, it doesn’t have to be beyond the reach of an aver. It is the third largest lake in Italy and features countless villas dotting the panoramic views of the shoreline. There is a ferry service between the small villages, including the popular town of Bellagio, which is called “the pearl of Lake Como.”
For outdoor activities, Lake Como is popular for kitesurfing, windsurfing, or just leisurely sailing with a glass of wine and enjoying the romantic views. You may also want to day trip to one of the other lakes, Lake Garda or Lake Maggiore.
The climate is fairly mild, but you will want to avoid May as it is the month with the highest average rainfall. The lowest rainfall is found during the winter months.
Verona Is A Romantic Setting
Located in northern Italy, the city has earned UNESCO World Heritage status. Verona inherits its romance factor from William Shakespeare as the setting for one of the best-known fictional love stories – Romeo and Juliet.
Since the city is often overlooked by many tourists, it is not overrun like many of the larger cities in Italy. The romantic city attracts Shakespeare fans, keeping it a bit of a hidden gem, but they also have a lovely medieval old town, and an impressive Roman amphitheater.
Florence Is Beautiful
Tuscany, often considered the birthplace of the Renaissance, features a number of beautiful towns and romantic villages. Florence (Firenze) is the capital of Tuscany and attracts millions of visitors each year. Many of the Renaissance masters were either born or lived in Florence at some point in their lives — names like Da Vinci, Botticelli, Michelangelo, and Galileo. Not surprisingly, then, that Florence is well known for its art, and its art museums and galleries house many of the world’s great art masterpieces.
Couples could easily spend weeks here touring the seemingly endless number of palaces, churches, cathedrals, piazzas, villas, and museums. Or enjoy a romantic walk along the Arno.
Like Verona, the historic walled center of Florence is also a UNESCO world heritage site.It has long been considered one of the most beautiful cities in the world.
Rome Is The Perfect Destination For A Day Trip
Cold water gushes from lions’ mouths. Streets are maddening lanes thronged with people. Piazzas are full of conversations or pigeons bed by locals. All roads lead to Rome.
Visit the Pantheon early enough in the day to see a beam of sunlight shining through the hole in the dome. Throw a coin in Trevi Fountain. Meander to Vatican City, a separate city-state totally surrounded by Rome, and often assumed to be part of Italy. Catch a mass at St Peter’s or marvel at the thunderous brow of God in the Sistine Chapel
Rome has more layers than any city on earth. And while many visitors don’t want to stay in the city, it’s a great place for a day trip.
Palermo Is Full Of Amazing Things To Do And See
No city better encapsulates the fusion of cultures and the romance of modern Italy than Palermo, the capital of the island of Sicily.
The city is well-known for its history, culture, architecture and food. Not surprising since the city is over 2,700 years old.
The chapel of Roger II is bathed in Byzantine gold while the wooden stalactite carvings on its ceiling are a tribute to the Islamic legacy the city still bears. The Capuchin Catacombs, lined with centuries-dead Palermitans arrayed in their Sunday best, is the most disturbingly bizarre site you will find in all of Italy.
Milan Is One Of The Best Places To Visit
It’s monochrome and many consider it dingy, but this Italian city shouldn’t be missed.
In Milano, Augustus went to college and Hemingway fell in love. Strolling through the Galleria, the grand Victorian concoction of stone, glass, and steel, browsing Louis Vuitton and Bulgari, and sipping a latte will make you feel like a rock star or at least one of those anonymous European billionaires that has a mansion on Lake Como.
Check out that monument to fascist grandiosity, Milano Centrale, at rush hour and you’ll see Italy at its horn-rimmed-glasses-flamboyant-scarf-fancy-luggage best. The city is rivaled by only Paris and New York for pure edginess.
Trapani For Star-Crossed Lovers
The western corner of Sicily, composed of Trapani and Marsala, is the most Arab region in the whole country (make sure you try the local couscous).
The whole region is dominated by Mount Erice, originally home to a temple to the Phoenician Goddess of Love where the priestesses practiced sacred acts of prostitution. The gondola ride up the grassy hillside takes in cities, farms, and the sea in three directions. The Egadi Islands boast white sand beaches equipped with gelato stands and trattorias that serve the best blue fin tuna in Europe.
Although Trapani has become popular with American ex-pats looking to buy property, it’s still possible to spend hours lazing in the sun and never here anyone speaking English
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Mary Jo Manzanares is a founder and the editor-in-chief of The Traveler’s Way, an online travel magazine proving informational and inspirational travel recommendations for curious Baby Boomer travelers. She has been a speaker at various industry events and has a personal travel blog at Traveling with MJ. When she’s not traveling, Mary Jo likes lingering over a cup of coffee, wandering in a museum, sipping wine at a cafe, and sharing it all with friends and readers. Mary Jo’s top travel destinations are Italy, Portugal, and the Caribbean.