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Hands Down, This Is The Only 10 Days In Italy Itinerary You Need

If you are searching for the perfect 10 days in Italy itinerary, you have come to the right place! Planning your Italy itinerary should be fun and exciting, not stressful, which is why we put together this detailed post to show you how to spend 10 days in Italy! We have visited Italy multiple times over the years so this travel itinerary for Italy includes some of Italy’s most famous things to do as well as some lesser-known suggestions that may not be recommended by others. We want you to see the best of what Italy has to offer on your first trip and that includes seeing the highlights as well as seeing some mountain towns and seaside villages.

For this 10 days in Italy itinerary, we will provide you with a breakdown of the stops we recommend and the best sites to see. Since everyone is different, we won’t tell you how long you should stay at each stop but will provide our recommendations. If you have always wanted to see the Italian Riviera but never had much interest in Venice, feel free to spend more of your 10 days in Italy doing the things you love and breezing by things that don’t interest you as much. Instead of planning out every moment of every day of your 10 days in Italy, we provide you with a structured yet loose itinerary to follow for your first trip to Italy!

Before you go, make sure you aren’t forgetting any of these 10 things on your Italy packing list! We just want to make sure you are prepared for this wonderful itinerary! 

Experience Italy like a local by staying at an Airbnb! Get a FREE $40 Airbnb Coupon by using our code when you book! 

The Ultimate 10 Days In Italy Itinerary For Any Time Of Year


The Ultimate 10 Days In Italy Itinerary For Any Time Of Year

Begin Your 10 Days In Italy Itinerary By Flying Into Rome

For the purpose of this 10 day in Italy itinerary, you are going to be flying into Rome. Rome is one of Italy’s major airports so flights come to Rome from all around the world. You will not be flying out of Rome at the end of your Italy itinerary, but this will most likely save you money by booking two one way flights out of Italy’s biggest airports!

We recommend checking out Skyscanner to find the best and most affordable flights into Italy. We use this tool to discover the best flights for our trip because you can easily compare rates. We also suggest booking your Italy Itinerary on a travel credit card so you can earn points towards future travel! These are the travel credit cards we personally use! 

Rome has two airports that you may fly into depending on where you are coming from. Rome’s Fiumicino Airport is the larger international airport so if you are coming from the Americas or Asia, you will be flying into this airport. Rome’s Ciampino Airport is used by smaller budget airlines such as Ryanair and Easyjet. You will fly into this airport if you are flying in for your 10 days in Italy itinerary from other parts of Europe. The airport is quite tiny while Fiumicino is the larger and more “main” airport in Rome.

The most affordable way to travel between Fiumicino Airport and Rome is by a shuttle bus that stops at both Termini Station and Piazza Cavour which is near the Vatican. This shuttle takes around an hour. There are also trains and taxi services that run into Rome as well. The bus costs 6 Euros.

Book Your Shuttle Bus To/From Fiumicino Airport Here

Book Your Ciampino Airport Transfer Shuttle Here

The Ultimate 10 Days In Italy Itinerary For Any Time Of Year

Getting Around During Your 10 Days In Italy Itinerary

You are probably wondering how you will get around the country during your Italy itinerary in 10 days and this is a great question! Luckily, you have options depending on how you want to spend 10 days in Italy! You can choose to take public transportation during your entire Italy itinerary and use some of the wonderful high-speed trains Italy has to offer. We have gone this route before and it is very easy and Italy’s train system is wonderful. This is our recommended course of action for this itinerary but you choose what is best for you!

You can also choose to rent a car or Vespa if you want to drive your 10 day Italy itinerary. We have also rented a car in Italy but it will be a more expensive route than taking the trains. You will also not be dropping the car off at the same place you picked it up, which will include an added cost. If you decide to rent a car, keep in mind that tolls in Italy can be pricey 20-30 Euros a pop and that parking is often hard to find in larger cities. We have driven in Italy and it is a great way to see the country if you hate waiting on trains and busses. You can also hire a private driver to take you all around on this 10 days in Italy itinerary if it works with your financial position.

Read more: Pros And Cons Of Renting A Car In Italy

The Ultimate 10 Days In Italy Itinerary For Any Time Of Year

Stop 1: Spend Time Exploring Rome To Begin Your 10 Days In Italy Itinerary 

Your 10 days in Italy itinerary will begin in the Eternal City of Rome! When most people think of Italy, their minds immediately wander to Rome and it is easy to see why! During our first trip to Italy, we spent 4 days in Rome which was a little much. Depending on your interest, we recommend spending 2 days in Rome but you are free to add more or less time as you see fit. If you have already been to Rome before but not the rest of Italy, feel free to modify this part of the Italy itinerary as you see fit!

Noteworthy Things To Do In Rome:

Throw A Coin In The Fontana di Trevi

Rome’s Trevi Fountain is one of her most famous landmarks! During your Italy itinerary, make sure to stop here and throw a coin into the fountain. This means that one day you will return to Rome! If you are looking to visit the Fontana di Trevi without other tourists, go early in the morning or late at night!

Explore The Coliseum

Rome’s Coliseum will be one of the most memorable things to do during your 10 days in Italy itinerary! This is a place you have heard about in history books and now it is your turn to explore it all on your own! We highly recommend booking a Coliseum Tour to get the most out of the experience. During the summer, they even have sunset tickets so you can visit after hours! No matter when you visit Rome, make sure the Coliseum is on your Italy itinerary!

Skip The Line With This Coliseum Tour! 

Wander Through The Roman Forum

The Roman Forum is not as popular as the Coliseum but it is worth seeing during your 10 days in Italy because it is very impressive and close by! The Roman Forum is just steps away from the Coliseum and is a wonderful place to walk around. You can just imagine the Romans here many years ago!

Book Your Roman Forum And Coliseum Tour Here!

Visit Piazza Navona

Piazza Navona is one of Rome’s most famous public squares. It was built in the 15th century and is now filled with cafes, shops, and places to get a delicious bite to eat!

Climb The Spanish Steps

You have probably seen the Spanish Steps in a movie or two! They are another famous landmark in Rome you should see during your 10 days in Italy itinerary. There are 135 steps so bring your walking shoes!

Take A Cooking Class

For many people, taking a cooking class in Rome is the highlight of their Italy itinerary! You can work with a traditional Italian cook to learn how to create some fantastic Roman-Italian dishes!

Cooking class recommendations:

Authentic Roman Cooking Class

Gelato Cooking Class In Rome

From Market To Table: 4 Hour Cooking Class In Rome

Visit The Pantheon

The Pantheon is a former Roman temple that is now a church. You should check it out during your 10 days in Italy itinerary because it is a famous historical building and another piece of history to admire! You can reserve a super affordable Pantheon audio guide here! 

The Ultimate 10 Days In Italy Itinerary For Any Time Of Year

Visiting The Vatican During Your Time In Rome

You may have wondered why visiting the Vatican wasn’t included on our things to do in Rome! Visiting the Vatican on your 10 days in Italy itinerary is such an experience that it deserves its own entire section! We highly recommend spending an entire day exploring Vatican City when in Rome. If this isn’t for you, then see what you wish, but we highly recommend devoting a whole day to this fabulous place!

There are two main things to do in the Vatican and that is see Saint Peter’s Basilica and tour the Vatican Museums. If you only have time to do one of these things, we hands down recommend visiting Saint Peter’s Basilica. It is truly the best thing we have ever seen during all of our years of travel. It is impressive and architecturally stunning!

The Vatican Museums are where you will find lots of art and history as well as the famous Sistine Chapel. You are going to want to buy tickets in advance for the Vatican Museums and you should try to get skip-the-line tickets if possible! The Vatican Museums take about 3 hours to tour and Saint Peter’s Basilica takes at least one hour maybe three, depending on what you want to see and do! This is why we highly recommend taking a whole day to explore the Vatican when in Rome and then for your other day(s) spend time seeing what else there is to see in the city. If you don’t have a full day to devote, go early in the morning and make it a half day!

Recommended Vatican Tours And Resources:

Vatican Museums And Sistine Chapel Fast Track Entry

Reserved Entrance For Saint Peter’s Basilica [highly recommend as we waited over an hour!]

Sistine Chapel, Vatican Museums, And Saint Peter’s Guided Tour

The Ultimate 10 Days In Italy Itinerary For Any Time Of Year

Where To Stay In Rome:

We love staying near Vatican City while in Rome. This way, you can walk to Vatican Square at night when it is all lit up and it is a peaceful getaway from the hustle and bustle of the city. We highly recommend taking a look at our detailed guide on Exactly Where To Stay In Rome! There are also lots of shops around! If you want to stay at an Airbnb, there are plenty of Airbnb options in Rome from budget to affordable depending on your funds for your Italy itinerary. 

Near Vatican: Relais Vatican View Hotel Check Rates: Booking.com | Hotels.com

Authentic Guesthouse: Viale Giulio Cesare Guest House Check Rates: Hotels.com

Mid-Range: Radisson Blu Roma. Check Rates: Booking.com | Hotels.com

Upscale: The Westin Excelsior Rome. Check Rates: Booking.com | Hotels.com

How Long To Spend In Rome During Your Italy Itinerary 

We recommend spending 2 days in Rome during your 10 days in Italy itinerary. Feel free to modify this and spend your time in Italy in 10 days how you see fit! We recommend 3 days at the most if you feel like 2 days isn’t enough.

The Ultimate 10 Days In Italy Itinerary For Any Time Of Year

Stop 2: Visit Florence And Tuscany On Your 10 Day Italy Itinerary

After you have finished exploring Rome, your 10 day Italy itinerary will continue in Florence, the birthplace of the Renaissance and jewel of Tuscany! We personally loved Florence more than Rome because it is a bit more laid back while still being an all-Italian city! It is very easy to take the train from Rome to Florence and you will arrive in this beautiful city in a flash! Florence is an extremely walkable city so there is no need to rely on public transport unless you want to head out of town to explore other villages.

For the best option, take the high-speed train from Roma Termini station to Firenze S M Novella in Florence. This will take 1 hour and 30 minutes. Book your train here: http://www.trenitalia.com/tcom-en

Top Things To Do In Florence: 

Explore Boboli Gardens

Boboli Gardens are a 16th-century garden overlooking the city of Florence! They are up a steep hill so if you are walking, come prepared with some sturdy shoes! Boboli Gardens cover quite a large expanse and are full with Italian sculptures and beautiful plants and flowers. Budget 1-2 hours for Boboli Gardens. Cost is 3-4 Euros.

Book here: Boboli Gardens Skip The Line Tour

Visit The Duomo

When visiting Florence on your 10 days in Italy itinerary, it is hard to miss the stunning Duomo. This Catholic Church soars over Florence and is the centerpiece for the whole town. There is a dress code for entering the Duomo and ladies and men must cover their knees and shoulders. Lines may be long but you can skip them by taking a tour. Complete silence is necessary when visiting the Duomo during your Italy itinerary.

Book here: Duomo Skip The Line Tickets And Dome Tour

Walk Across The Ponte Vecchio

The Ponte Vecchio is a picture perfect bridge in Florence and the perfect place to catch the sunset with a gelato during your 10 days in Italy itinerary. Make sure to bring your camera! It is one of the top things to do in Florence and shouldn’t be missed! 

See David At Galleria dell’Accademia During Your Italy Itinerary

Looking to see Michaelangelo’s greatest works? Check out the Galleria dell’Accademia during your 10 days in Italy itinerary! If you want to visit the famous “David” statue, this is the time and place to see him with your very own eyes! The Galleria dell’Accademia gets very busy so if you don’t want to waste time during your 10 days in Italy, book a timed entrance ticket before you arrive or book a guided tour.

Save Time here: Timed Entrance Ticket For Michaelangelo’s David

Marvel At Rennisance Artwork At Palazzo Pitti

Palazzo Pitti is Florence’s biggest art museum! It is full of stunning Rennisance works of art! If you are art lovers like we are, this is a must-see stop to include when visiting Italy in 10 days! There are so many beautiful works of art to discover!

The Ultimate 10 Days In Italy Itinerary For Any Time Of Year

Where To Stay In Florence:

Florence is much smaller than Rome so if you are staying in the city center there really are no bad places to stay! Hotels in Florence range from affordable to luxury options. You can get a really nice hotel in the city center of Florence for a very reasonable price. This is why Florence is one of our favorite places to stay in Italy! 

Affordable: Hotel Bavaria. Check Rates: Booking.com 

Mid-Range: Globus Urban Hotel. Check Rates: Booking.com | Hotels.com

Upscale: Hotel Garibaldi Blu Check Rates: Booking.comHotels.com

How Long To Spend In Florence During Your 10 Days In Italy:

Depending on how you decide to divide up the days on your 10 days in Italy itinerary, we recommend spending between 1-2 days in Florence. You can easily do everything in Florence in a day if you arrive early and stay out late in the event you want to spend more time elsewhere on this Italy itinerary. If you want to spend more time in Florence, 2 days is the perfect amount of time to explore all that this city has to offer without feeling totally rushed.

The Ultimate 10 Days In Italy Itinerary For Any Time Of Year

Stop 3: Check Venice Off Your Italy Itinerary Bucket List

Venice is the capital of Italy’s Vento region and is made up of over 100 tiny islands! Depending on who you ask, Venice is known as one of the most romantic cities in the world and when you visit on this 10 days in Italy itinerary, you will see why. Venice is just a train ride away from Florence and most train trips actually stop in Florence anyway on their way from Rome to Venice.

The best route to go from Florence is to get on your train at Santa Maria Novela station in Florence and head to Venezia Santa LuciaIf in Venice. This train trip takes a little over 2 hours and is a nice easy ride. Book in advance here: http://www.trenitalia.com/tcom-en

Recommended Things To Do In Venice During Your 10 Day Italy Itinerary

Explore The Famed Piazza San Marco

Piazza San Marco is also known as Saint Mark’s Square and is the most popular square in Venice, and maybe all of Italy! This iconic square was built in the 12 century and the centerpiece of the square is Saint Mark’s Basilica which you can also tour. This is where people feed the pigeons so if you love birds, this is your time to get up close and personal with them during your 10 days in Italy itinerary! Make sure to pack appropriately for Italy as you will be doing a lot of walking on this itinerary!

Book here: Saint Mark’s Basilica Skip The Line Entrance Ticket

Climb The Companile di San Marco Bell Tower

The Companile di San Marco is the bell tower that stands tall over Saint Mark’s Square. You have seen it in many photos and a replica is even at Walt Disney World! When climbing the Companile di San Marco you will get one of the best views in all of Venice! This is a wonderful spot for photography during your 10 days in Italy itinerary.

Book here: Saint Mark’s Bell Tower Skip The Line Ticket

Go On A Gondola Ride

What trip to Venice is complete without going on a Gondola Ride? This is such a fun thing to do during your 10 days in Italy itinerary and we highly recommend splurging on one! These tours provide a unique view of Venice that you wouldn’t get walking the streets or from other boat tours! The Venetian Canals are a world of their own!

Reserve Here: 20 Minute Gondola Ride

Marvel At Doge’s Palace

Doge’s Palace is an ornate gothic place right on the canals of Venice! It is a museum and show room and one of the most impressive palaces you will see during your 10 days in Italy itinerary! Doge’s Palace holds lacework, paintings, sculptures and more and is a real treat for architecture lovers!

Book here: Doge’s Palace Timed Admission Ticket

Take A Tour Of The Venetian Islands

Another great way to see Venice is to get out of the canals and to explore the Venetian lagoon! You will visit the small towns of Murano, Burano, and Torcello, depending on what tour you take. Since Venice isn’t exactly a walkable city, the best way to see these islands and the lagoon is to take a guided tour. You will also learn lots of great information about Venice!

Book here: Boat Tour Of Venice Lagoon And Islands

Walk Over The Rialto Bridge

The Rialto Bridge in Venice is the most iconic bridge you will see on your 10 days in Italy itinerary! While walking across this 16th century stone footbridge is an experience, it is even better to stand back and marvel at its beauty from afar! If you are a photographer, the Rialto Bridge in Venice will be a real treat when visiting Italy in 10 days!

The Ultimate 10 Days In Italy Itinerary For Any Time Of Year

Where To Stay In Venice:

When staying in Venice during your 10 day Italy itinerary, we highly recommend staying in the city center! There are a variety of hotel and Airbnb options in Venice ranging from the budget $70 a night places to luxury $300 a night hotels. Please don’t forget to check out our VERY detailed guide on Exactly Where To Stay In Venice Italy!  There is something for everyone when planning your stay during 10 days in Italy so choose the accommodation that feels right to you. We recommend staying near Saint Mark’s Basilica or the Rialto Bridge. No matter where you decide to stay, you are in Venice and that is something to celebrate!

City Center: Hotel Casanova. Check Rates: Booking.com | Hotels.com

Mid-Range: Hotel Al Nuovo Teson. Check Rates: Hotels.com

4-Star: Royal San Marco Hotel. Check Rates: Booking.com | Hotels.com 

How Long To Stay In Venice During Your Italy Itinerary:

When choosing how many of your 10 days in Italy you should spare for Venice, take into account that the city can be seen relatively quickly. We recommend spending 1-2 days in Venice. If Venice is your dream city or you want to celebrate a special occasion there, then spend a little bit longer and cut down on another location. If you want to see Venice, experience it, and then move on, 1-2 days tops should be plenty of time to budget on your Italy itinerary!

Discover where to stay in Venice Italy

Stop 4: Explore The Italian Alps And Dolomites In Bolzano 

The Italian Alps/Dolomites are rarely included on 10 day Italy itineraries and we always wonder why! The Dolomites are some of the most spectacular and impressive mountains in the whole entire world and they are so easy to get to/from from other parts of Italy! Bolzano is known as the Gateway To The Dolomites and it should certainly be a stop on your 10 days in Italy itinerary. Bolzano is much less touristy than Rome, Florence, Or Venice, which is why we included it on your Italy itinerary for 10 days. You will love leaving the hustle and bustle of the city for the mountains!

You can take the train from Stazione di Venezia Santa Lucia in Florence to Bolzano Bolzen station in Bolzano. The journey takes between 3:15 minutes to 3:45 minutes depending on which train you book. As always, book these tickets well in advance of your 10 day Italy vacation! Book train tickets here: http://www.trenitalia.com/tcom-en

Things To Do In Bolzano/The Dolomites:

Take A Cable Car Up The Mountainside

Take in the beautiful Alpine countryside and mountains by taking a cabe car ride high above Bolzano! The Renon Cable Car starts from Bolzano and heads up a nearby mountain. The cable car takes 11 minutes to reach from bottom to top and you are treated with stunning and memorable views of the surrounding countryside! The Italian Alps will be so different than anything else you see on your 10 days in Italy itinerary and a cable car ride is a wonderful introduction!

Explore Puez-Geisler Nature Park For Something Different During Your 10 Days In Italy

Looking for something different than the rest of your 10 days in Italy itinerary? Rent a car in Bolzano and escape the city with a 1 hour and 35-minute drive up to the Puez-Geisler Nature Park. This nature park is home to some of the most stunning natural landscapes that Italy has to offer! The Dolomites are truly at their best here and we highly recommend visiting during your Italy itinerary!

Book here: Great Dolomites Road Trip Private Tour From Bolzano (6 Hours)

Visit The Duomo di Bolzano

Located in the heart of Bolzano, the Duomo di Bolzano is a 4th-century church located on a lovely little square! The Duomo di Bolzano is an architectural masterpiece and has a stunning tiled roof. The white and green tiles on the roof are striking and interesting compared to other churches you will find in Italy and Europe. The inside is just as lovely as the outside with columns and a stunning main altar.

Pretend You Are Royalty At Castel Roncolo

Castel Roncolo is an impressive castle fortress located just a bit outside of Bolzano! If you love castles and mountain scenes, make sure this stop goes on your 10 days in Italy itinerary! Although Castel Roncolo is located a bit outside of Bolzano, regular buses travel to the castle from Piazza Walther in town. The Castle is a sight to behold and the mountain vistas don’t disappoint!

Go On A Beautiful Nature Walk

The Guntschna Walk is one of the most well-known nature walks in Bolzano. It is an easy and enjoyable way to explore nature without hiking for long distances. The walk starts near the Griest church and the walking trail winds up the side of the mountain. Along the way, you will come across lovely flowers and trees. During the nature walk, you will see beautiful views of Bolzano and the surrounding countryside. This is the perfect way to cap off a long day of exploring during your 10 days in Italy itinerary!

The Ultimate 10 Days In Italy Itinerary For Any Time Of Year

Where To Stay In Bolzano:

We recommend staying in the city center of Bolzano during your 10 day Italy itinerary. Bolzano is a much smaller town than the first three you visited during your Italian itinerary, but there are still plenty of options for you to stay in! There are four-star hotels and boutique hotels and affordable inns, depending on your budgetary requirements for lodging when visiting Italy in 10 days.

Affordable: Residence Fink. Check Rates: Booking.com | Hotels.com 

Mid-Range: Gardenhotel Premstaller. Check Rates: Booking.com | Hotels.com

Upscale: Parkhotel Laurin. Check Rates: Booking.comHotels.com

How Long To Spend In Bolzano During Your 10 Days In Italy:

It is hard to describe how unique and stunning Bolzano and the Italian Dolomites are! We highly recommend spending a minimum of two days in Bolzano and the Italian Alps. One day just isn’t enough to see the nature park and to explore the city. If you rent a car, which we highly recommend, you should spend one day exploring Bolzano and the castles and one day visiting the nature park since the drive is a bit long. Either way, we know you are going to love seeing the Dolomites on your 10 day Italy itinerary!

The Ultimate 10 Days In Italy Itinerary For Any Time Of Year

Stop 5: Visit The Mediterranean Coast At Genoa, Portofino, And Cinque Terre

The next part of your 10 days in Italy itinerary will take you from the Alps to the calming waters of the Mediterranian coast! This will be the longest train or bus journey of your Italy itinerary, but it is worth taking one for the team to see both of these amazing and impressive stops! You will visit the Mediterranian Coast in the Liguria region. The capital is Genoa, and this is where you will arrive and possibly stay if you should choose, but you will be also visiting the nearby Portofino and Cinque Terre villages. The Ligurian Coast is relaxing and rejuvenating and the perfect way to continue your 10 days in Italy itinerary!

To get to Genoa from Bolzano, you will take between 2-3 trains or busses. The journey takes about 5 hours but you get a great tour of the Italian countryside. You will pick up your train or bus at Bolzano Bolzen station and will take it [with a few transfers in between] to the Genova Piazza Principle Station in Genoa. Get your train tickets here: http://www.trenitalia.com/tcom-en

Visiting Genoa And Top Things To Do

Genoa is where your train from Bolzano will arrive into and is your gateway to visiting the Ligurian Coast during your 10 day Italy itinerary. Genoa is also where you will find the widest variety and most affordable hotel and lodging options during your trip.

Genoa Aquarium

The Aquarium Of Genoa is stunning and totally worth the trip. If you are looking to do something a little different during your 10 days in Italy or if the weather is hot or rainy, the Genoa Aquarium is a wonderful thing to include on your itinerary!

Reserve here: Genoa Aquarium Skip The Line Ticket

Hop-On-Hop-Off Bus Tour

Taking a hop-on-hop-off bus tour is a great way to see what Genoa has to offer! Tickets are valid for 48 hours so you can easily explore Genoa at your own pace with all the transportation included in your price!

Book here: 48 Hour Hop-On-Hop-Off-Bus-Tour

Historical Center Walking Tour

Genoa’s historic downtown city center is wonderful to explore and steeped in history! From lovely squares to hidden alleyways, taking a walking tour of Genoa will give you a locals look at this wonderful coastal city!

Reserve here: 2 Hour Genoa Walking Tour

The Ultimate 10 Days In Italy Itinerary For Any Time Of Year

Visiting Portofino And Top Things To Do

Portofino is a wonderful place to visit and quite near Genoa! You have two options to get to Portofino, either renting a car or Vespa, or taking the train/bus. Both are easy options and Portofino is a lovely town. We recommend making it a day stop as it is a playground for the rich and famous and prices are quite high for hotels!

Explore Castello Brown

Castello Brown is a house museum located high above the harbor at Portofino. It has been in use since the 15th century and provides sweeping views of the landscape below. You can easily see how Castello Brown would have been used in days past to protect Portofino from invaders!

Go Snorkeling Or Diving

The Ligurian Coast is a haven for snorkeling and diving! The clear water makes Portofino the perfect place to cool off after exploring Italy in 10 days! There are a variety of snorkeling and diving trips you can take depending on your comfort level! Make sure to check that the tours are still running depending on what time of year you take your Italy itinerary!

Reserve here: 1 Hour Portofino Snorkeling Tour

Visit San Fruttuoso Abbey

San Fruttuoso Abbey is a 10th Century Roman Catholic abbey in Portofino. It is located tucked away in a cove and is a wonderful history museum and location to tour. If you love architecture, this is the perfect place for you!

Eat Gelato On The Streets Of Portofino

Portofino is quite a small town and the shopping streets are all very close together. While you are in Portofino, make sure to slow down and take in the Italian Riviera by having a bite to eat or grabbing a Gelato while walking around and marveling at all the luxury yachts moored in the harbor!

The Ultimate 10 Days In Italy Itinerary For Any Time Of Year

Visiting Cinque Terre And Top Things To Do

Cinque Terre is actually a collection of 5 towns, Monterosso, Vernazza, Corniglia, Manarola, and Riomaggiore. You can choose to visit all 5 during your 10 days in Italy itinerary, or you can choose your top picks and save the rest for next time. If you want to explore all of the towns, we recommend budgeting an entire day to do so! Otherwise, you can make 1-2 a quick stop during a full day touring the Ligurian Coast!

You can choose to drive or take the train if you want to add Cinque Terre to your Italy itinerary. If you choose to take the train from Genoa, take a local train toward La Spezia and get off at your desired Cinque Terre destination. Alternatively, you can take an express train directly to La Spezia and a local train back to your Cinque Terre town of choice.

Hike The Monterosso Footpath

The Monterosso footpath connects the towns of Monterosso and Vernazza and provides stunning views of the towns! This hike is a bit challenging as you are going up the coastal cliffs, so budget at least 1-2 hours to complete it. The views are worth the effort, but bring plenty of water, especially if you visit during the summer!

Explore The Church of San Francesco

The Church of San Francesco overlooks the Mediterranian Sea and provides breathtaking views of the stunning blue water below! The Church of San Francesco was built in the 17th century and is a wonderful stop when touring Cinque Terre on your Italy itinerary.

Visit Parco Nazionale Cinque Terre

This National Park is one of the smallest in Italy at only 15 square miles but one of the most popular and most beautiful! Parco Nazionale Cinque Terre is one of the most heavily inhabited national parks in Italy and it is easy to see why! A one day pass costs $9 per person to enter the National Park. Parco Nazionale Cinque Terre is also a UNESCO World Heritage Site.

Book here: Cinque Terre Tour And National Park Card

Take A Boat Tour Of Cinque Terre During Your Italy Itinerary

If you are short on time during your 10 days in Italy, consider taking a boat tour of the Cinque Terre villages. A boat tour will allow you to see all of the towns with ease and speed and you won’t feel like you missed a thing! A boat tour is an easy and affordable way to add Cinque Terre to your Italy itinerary even if you are short on time because you can see everything by water!

Learn more: Cinque Terre Boat Tour With Lunch 

The Ultimate 10 Days In Italy Itinerary For Any Time Of Year

Where To Stay On The Ligurian Coast

Depending on the amount of time you allot to the Ligurian Coast out of your 10 days in Italy, we recommend staying in Genoa, the nearby town of Bogliasco, or one of the Cinque Terre villages. We even put this guide together of Best Places To Stay In Cinque Terre! If you are short on time, we recommend making Genoa your home base since it is close to the main train up to Milan. If you have more time to spend or are allotting more than one day to the Italian Riviera, you can consider staying in the Cinque Terre Village of your choice. We personally loved staying at a local Italian home in Bogliasco as it was quiet and relaxing with coastal views!

Affordable: B&B Hotel Genova. Check Rates: Booking.com | Hotels.com

Upscale: The First – Manarola 5 Terre. Check rates: Booking.com | Hotels.com

Beach Location: Locanda Il Maestrale. Check Rates: Booking.comHotels.com

Upscale: Bristol Palace Hotel. Check Rates: Booking.com | Hotels.com

How Long To Spend On The Ligurian Coast During Your 10 Days In Italy

We recommend spending 2 days on the Ligurian Coast during your Italy itinerary. If you can swing it and change up your itinerary elsewhere, you may even choose to spend three wonderful days along the coast! If you made changes elsewhere but still don’t want to sacrifice seeing the Mediterranean Coast, this part of your Italy Itinerary can be done in 1 day and 1 night if you must. We highly recommend staying the night in Genoa if you only have one night to spend and taking the train and a Cinque Terre boat tour to save time while still allowing you to experience the best of what the Ligurian Coast has to offer!

The Ultimate 10 Days In Italy Itinerary For Any Time Of Year

Stop 6: End Your 10 Days In Italy Itinerary By Flying Out Of Milan

You will end your 10 days in Italy itinerary by flying out of Milan. Milan is home to a very large international airport and many affordable flight options fly in from all over the world. Beginning your trip in Rome and ending it in Milan is perfect, especially if you want to spend the majority of your Italy itinerary exploring! If you must fly roundtrip from Rome, you can shorten the itinerary a bit to leave room for flying back to Rome from the Milan Airport which should be a quick puddle jump. Overall, we do recommend purchasing two one-way flights to give you the max amount of time to explore 10 days in Italy!

Book here: Milan VIP Airport Transfer For Up To 3 People

Getting to Milan from Genoa is quite easy! Simply take the train from Genova Piazza Principe to the Milano Central Rail Station. The train journey should take about 1 hour and 40 minutes and is quite easy to navigate. Book tickets in advance here: http://www.trenitalia.com/tcom-en

Suggested Things To Do In Milan To End Your Italy Itinerary:

Take In The Breathtaking Milan Cathedral

The Milan Cathedral is an architectural wonder and a breathtaking masterpiece! It is so much bigger in real life than it looks in photos, and you must make it a stop during your 10 day Italy itinerary, even if you are short on time! The Milan Cathedral is also a popular place to feed the pigeons!

Book here: Milan Cathedral And Rooftop Entrance Tickets

Go Shopping At Galleria Vittorio Emanuele II

Galleria Vittorio Emanuele II is Italy’s oldest shopping mall and a hallmark thing to do when visiting Milan! The Galleria Vittorio Emanuele II is housed in a 19th-century glass-covered arcade and is quite the site to behold! If you haven’t had time to do much shopping during your 10 days in Italy, now is the time to take advantage!

Visit Sforza Castle In Milan

Sforza Castle in Milan is a 15th-century castle located right in the city. It is also home to various artistic works, including those from Leonardo Da Vinci! If you are looking to add another museum and art gallery to your Italy itinerary, make sure to put Sforza Castle on your list of things to do in Milan.

Explore The City On A Bus Tour

If you are short on time but still want to explore Milan during your 10 day Italy itinerary, a hop-on-hop-off bus tour is the perfect way to quickly see the city! Even if you aren’t into doing super touristy things, you will still enjoy this bus tour of Milan. It will provide insider information to some of the most famous sites in Milan and you will easily be able to get off the bus should you want to explore more! This is perfect if you only have one day to tour Milan.

Reserve here: 1-2 day Hop On Hop Off Tickets

The Ultimate 10 Days In Italy Itinerary For Any Time Of Year

Where To Stay In Milan:

If you are catching your flight out of the Milan Airport the next day, we highly recommend spending your last night in Italy somewhere close to the Milan Airport. This will allow you to explore on the last day of your 10 day Italy itinerary without worrying about waking up early and taking a long transfer taxi or bus to the airport to catch your flight the next day.

Mid-Range: Sheraton Milan Airport Hotel. Check Rates: Booking.com | Hotels.com

Affordable: First Hotel Malpensa. Check Rates: Booking.com | Hotels.com 

How Long To Spend In Milan On Your Italy Itinerary:

We recommend spending one day in Milan during your 10 days In Italy itinerary at the most. Compared to other Italian cities on this itinerary, Milan can be done very quickly or maybe not at all. If you are looking for how to save time and budget days for elsewhere in this 10-day Itinerary for Italy, we recommend spending as little time as possible in Milan! Use Milan as your gateway to the airport, stop off and see a thing or two, and then be on your way home!

The Ultimate 10 Days In Italy Itinerary For Any Time Of Year

10 Day Italy Itinerary Map

If you are a visual person, not to worry! We have included our 10 day Italy itinerary in a map version below for you to see exactly where you will be going during your trip! Feel free to bookmark or screenshot during your planning stages! All places recommended on this Italy itinerary are very easy to find by simply plugging the name into your GPS! The places will pop right up. You can even download the maps offline if you use Google Maps! 

Getting A Sim Card In Italy

If you are planning your 10 days in Italy but don’t want to break the bank with international cell phone coverage, we HIGHLY recommend investing in a local SIM card. A local SIM card will give you access to local Italian cell phone networks and you will be able to use your phone just like a local!  Spending too much money on a pricey international cell phone plan is one of the biggest mistakes people make when planning a trip to Italy in 10 days and we want you to avoid it!  We love using sim cards from local countries as they allow you fast, easy, and affordable network connection. When buying a sim card, you can usually purchase one in the airport or in any downtown metro area. 

The best network for sim cards in Italy is TIM. This sim card costs around $25 for 30 days of usage and comes with 4G speeds and 15GB of data usage. This is a WONDERFUL deal and oftentimes much cheaper [and way faster!] than using your own plans international data. Plans such as Verizon don’t really exist in Italy which will cause your experience to be frustrating and slow. Plans such as TIM do exist and are the main network used in the country so you can be sure to have an enjoyable and affordable experience. We highly recommend looking into a TIM SIM [heehee] when planning your 10 day Italy itinerary. 

woman using a sim card in Italy

Do I Have To Drive In Italy?

If we were to answer this question simply, the answer is NO! You do NOT have to drive in Italy to experience this 10 day itinerary. In fact, this entire itinerary can be done by using public transportation. The public transportation in Italy is fantastic and affordable and trains run between all the popular destinations on this list. The moment you arrive in town, there is more public transportation to take you throughout the city. 

That being said,  renting a car will provide you with so much freedom. If a tour is more your style then that is totally fine and there are some great tours in Italy that will take you around with ease if you are only in Italy for a few days. As we mentioned above, Italy has some FANTASTIC public transportation that you should 100% use. But great public transportation can only take you so far. We have traveled to Italy both by renting a car AND by only relying on public transportation. The choice is truly yours. Driving in Italian cities can be a bit stressful if it is busy or during rush hour, but otherwise, the experience is quite nice! 

For example, when we rented a car in Trentino in the Italian Alps/Dolomites, we spent 5-6 hours a day driving up to the tip-top of the mountains, seeing quaint villages, driving past cliff-side vineyards, finding random castle ruins and more. When we rented a car in Milan, we drove down the coast and spent days exploring small Italian seaside villages. Although there are indeed trains and buses that go to these places, a car provides us with way more freedom and it is a really fantastic way to see Italy if you are up for it. 

A WORD FROM THE WISE: While renting a car in Italy can be affordable, some tolls are steep! We are talking $25 a pop. If you choose to rent a car while planning a trip to Italy [and we highly recommend it] budget at least $200 for tolls, especially if you are driving anywhere out of Milan. Some parts of Italy have more expensive toll roads while others are much more affordable. 

Please keep in mind that YOU DO NOT HAVE TO DRIVE IN ITALY! It all depends on what you are comfortable with doing and we just wanted to let you know about all your choices as well as what we personally recommend! 

car in Rome Italy during sunset

Understanding The Italian Public Transit System

If you want to do this 10 day Italy itinerary with just public transportation, then this section is for you! Even if you are renting a car in Italy, you will still need to rely on public transport in Italy. We receive A LOT of questions regarding utilizing the public transit system in Italy and we are here to tell you that it is wonderful! If you are from the USA and are reading this, it is very easy to understand and very affordable! 

Let’s say you fly into Rome to begin your 10 days in Italy. There are affordable public transportation options to get you from the Rome airport into the city center [which we have personally used!] When you are in Rome you can either take the bus or the metro [underground/subway] around the city. When it is time to head to say, Florence, the next stop on this Italy itinerary, don’t worry! You will catch a local bus/metro to the larger train station. You will find your train and ride it to your destination. Once you arrive in that destination such as Florence, you will walk out of the station and there will be local public transportation HERE for you too! It really is that simple! 

Even the smaller towns in Italy such as Bolzano or Cinque Terre have great local transportation options and are very affordable. There is a train that runs through Cinque Terre multiple times an hour, for example. When you are planning your 10 days in Italy, keep this in the back of your mind, especially if you live somewhere that doesn’t rely on public transportation for transit. You will not show up at a train station and then be left with no option to connect you to your hotel or the city center. Italy isn’t like North America and this country is well-connected to the max! It was an easy, affordable, and enjoyable experience. Please do not worry if you choose to utilize public transportation when planning your 10 days in Italy itinerary. 

train tracks through Tuscany Italy


Our 10 days in Italy itinerary will help you plan your trip to Italy any time of year. Whether this is your first time visiting Italy or you are a seasoned traveler, this Italy itinerary will point you in the right direction to get started planning your trip! When planning your 10 day Italy itinerary, remember that you can budget the days of the trip any way you like, but we do provide our recommended suggestions!

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12 thoughts on “Hands Down, This Is The Only 10 Days In Italy Itinerary You Need

  1. Christine Russo

    All your suggestions sound wonderful. I’m planning a trip there soon, I’ll use your itinerary body. Thanks.

  2. Anshula

    First of all, I love how comprehensive this post is! I think I’ve added a hundred things to my Italy bucket list – Doge’s Palace being number one (how have I never heard of this place before?). I was also a little worried that ten days wasn’t enough time to see Italy but this sounds like such a wonderful itinerary that has just the right amount of things to do and isn’t too jam packed.

  3. Esh

    Thank you for the great tips.. Looking forward to my trip to Italy. Am planning a trip end Nov – beginning Dec. If anyone’s interested in joining, would love to explore the place together!

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  7. Lori Wertz

    Thank you for this wonderful itinerary. Best I’ve seen because it includes the Dolomites. We plan on visiting Italy the spring of 2020.

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