Trevi Fountain in Rome
Trevi Fountain in Rome

Rome

The Trevi Fountain is one of the oldest water sources in Rome. The fountain dates back to ancient Roman times, since the construction of the Aqua Virgo Aqueduct in 19 B.C. that provided water to the Roman baths and the fountains of central Rome.
Photo by Cristina Gottardi

ITALY

Europe

Italy Travel Information

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Key facts

Capital:

Rome

Location:

Southern Europe, a peninsula extending into the central Mediterranean Sea, northeast of Tunisia

Currency:

euros (EUR)

Area:

301,340 sq km

Population:

62,390,364 (July 2021 est.)

Languages:

Italian (official), German (parts of Trentino-Alto Adige region are predominantly German speaking), French (small French-speaking minority in Valle d'Aosta region), Slovene (Slovene-speaking minority in the Trieste-Gorizia area)

Religion:

Christian 80.8% (overwhelmingly Roman Catholic with very small groups of Jehovah's Witnesses and Protestants), Muslim 4.9%, unaffiliated 13.4%, other 0.9% (2020 est.)

TimeZone:

UTC+1

Tel Code:

+39

Weather

Climate

Italy has a diverse climate due to its varied topography. The northern part of the country tends to have a cooler, more temperate climate, while the southern part of the country is generally warmer. The coastal areas of Italy tend to be milder, while the interior of the country can be quite hot in the summer.

Best time to visit

The best time to visit Italy depends on what you want to do and where you want to go.

  • Spring (April to June) is a great time to visit as the weather is mild and the crowds are not as heavy as in the summer. Also, it is the perfect time to see the blooming flowers and the countryside.
  • Summer (July to September) is the peak tourist season in Italy, with warm weather and long days. However, it can also be quite hot and crowded, especially in popular tourist destinations like Rome and Florence.
  • Fall (October to November) is a great time to visit, with milder weather and fewer crowds. It is also the perfect time to visit the vineyards in Tuscany and the wine harvest season.
  • Winter (December to March) can be quite cold and damp in many parts of Italy, but it is also the low season, which means fewer crowds and lower prices. Overall, the best time to visit Italy depends on your personal preferences and what you want to do during your trip. Keep in mind that peak travel season is usually in the summer months and it can be quite hot and crowded. If you're looking for milder weather and fewer crowds, spring or fall would be a great time to visit.

Transportation

Train

Italy has an extensive and reliable train system that connects major cities and tourist destinations. The trains are comfortable, and most offer first and second class seating options. A high-speed train called the "Frecciarossa" connects Rome to Milan, Florence, Venice, and other cities in less time. Train travel is generally considered one of the most efficient and cost-effective ways to get around Italy.

Bus

Bus travel is also a popular option in Italy, especially for shorter trips and to reach smaller towns. Buses are generally less expensive than trains, but the journey can be longer and less comfortable.

Car

Renting a car is a great option for travelers who want to explore the Italian countryside and visit smaller towns and villages that are not easily accessible by public transportation. Keep in mind that traffic in Italy can be heavy and chaotic, and parking can be difficult in some cities.

Air

Italy has several major airports that connect the country to destinations around the world. Flying is a good option for travelers who are looking to cover long distances quickly and efficiently.

Boat

Taking a boat is a great way to see some of Italy's coastal towns and islands. Ferries connect the mainland to the island of Sardinia, Sicily, and the Aeolian islands. Additionally, there are hydrofoils and speedboats that connect the mainland to the Amalfi Coast, Capri, and the island of Ischia.

Taxi and Ridesharing

Taxis and ridesharing services such as Uber are also available in Italy. However, they tend to be more expensive than other transportation options and may be more difficult to find in smaller towns and villages.

Ultimately, the best transportation option for you will depend on your itinerary, budget, and personal preferences. Keep in mind that public transportation options are generally more affordable and efficient, while rental cars and taxis offer more flexibility.

Accommodation

Hotel

Italy has a wide variety of hotel options to suit every budget and preference. From luxury 5-star hotels to budget-friendly 2-star hotels, you can find accommodations in every major city and tourist destination in Italy. Many hotels offer amenities such as a gym, pool, and spa, while others may have a restaurant or bar on-site.

Bed and Breakfast

Bed and Breakfast (B&B) is a great option for travelers who want a more personal and intimate experience. Many B&Bs are located in charming and historic buildings, and the owners are often happy to provide local tips and recommendations.

Apartment and Vacation Rentals

Another popular accommodation option in Italy is renting an apartment or vacation rental. This is a great option for travelers who want the comforts of home, such as a kitchen and living room, and also for those who want to stay in a specific area for longer periods.

Hostel

Hostels are a great budget-friendly option for backpackers and budget travelers. They offer dormitory-style rooms and shared facilities such as bathrooms and kitchens. They also tend to have a social atmosphere and can be a great way to meet other travelers.

Agriturismo

Agriturismo is a type of accommodation that is becoming increasingly popular in Italy. It is a farmhouse or rural property that offers rooms or apartments for rent. This type of accommodation is a great way to experience the Italian countryside and learn about local food and culture.

Camping

Camping is another popular option for travelers who want to explore Italy's beautiful countryside. Italy has a wide variety of campsites, from basic to luxurious, and many of them offer amenities such as bathrooms, showers, and swimming pools.

Ultimately, the best accommodation option for you will depend on your personal preferences, budget and the purpose of your trip. Keep in mind that the peak travel season is usually in the summer months and prices tend to be higher during that period.

Money

Money Tips for Travel

  • Research the currency and exchange rates of your destination before you depart.
  • Notify your bank and credit card companies of your travel plans to avoid any potential issues with international transactions.
  • Bring a mix of cash, credit, and debit cards--and possibly a travel money card.
  • Be aware of the fees associated with withdrawing money from ATMs and using credit cards abroad.
  • Make sure to have a backup option for accessing money in case your primary method doesn't work.
  • Consider using a card with no foreign transaction fees.
  • Be aware of the local customs and etiquette when it comes to paying.
  • Keep an eye on the exchange rate throughout your trip and try to make large purchases or withdraw large sums of money when the rate is favorable.
  • NEVER accept currency conversion at ATMs! Always get your home bank to convert at much better rates.
  • Think about getting a Wise or other travel debit card; these can provide much better rates and some free ATM withdrawals.

ATM and Credit Cards

  • Research the availability of ATMs and credit card acceptance at your destination before you depart.
  • Keep your ATM card in a safe place and be mindful of your surroundings when using it.
  • Try to stick to using ATMs that are affiliated with major banks.
  • Keep your credit card information safe and secure, and be aware of potential scams.
  • Make sure your cards have the necessary security features, such as chip and pin.
  • Be aware of the fees associated with withdrawing money from ATMs and using credit cards abroad.

Exchange Rates

  • Research the currency and exchange rates of your destination before you depart.
  • Consider using a card with no foreign transaction fees.
  • Be aware of the local customs and etiquette when it comes to paying.
  • Keep an eye on the exchange rate throughout your trip and try to make large purchases or withdraw large sums of money when the rate is favorable.
  • Be careful of places that may offer to exchange money at rates that seem too good to be true.

Mobile

When traveling, getting mobile access is very important these days. If you are working remotely, wanting to update social media, or need to access your banks SMS authentication messages having a reliable service is a must. At WhereNext we recommend:

eSIM

Services such as those offered by our partner, Airalo, allow you to easily order and install an eSIM for different countries or regions that you are traveling in.

Dual SIM phone

If you have a phone that supports dual SIM's then you can get a SIM on arrival for each country, this is probably better done at a telco store rather than at the airport.

Extend your home plan

Depending on where you live and your mobile service provider you may be able to extend your plan to cover mobile roaming at reasonable rates.

Keep your primary SIM

With the amount of accounts we all have that require two factor authentication via SMS, keeping a constant number for these accounts is a must.

Community

There are several online communities and platforms that you can use to meet people while traveling, both for making new friends or for networking professionally. Some popular options include:

Facebook groups

There are many Facebook groups dedicated to connecting people while traveling, from expat groups and travel communities to groups specific to certain cities or regions of the country. You can search for groups based on your interests or location and connect with others who share similar interests.

Meetup

Meetup is a platform that allows you to find groups of people that share your interests in your local area. There are Meetup groups all around the world, and they cover a wide range of topics, such as language exchange, sports, and cultural activities.

Internations

Internations is a social network for people who live or work abroad. It has a large community of expats and organizes regular events, activities and gatherings that allow members to connect and socialize.

Couchsurfing

Couchsurfing is a platform that connects travelers with local hosts, who offer free accommodation and a chance to experience the local culture. It's a great way to meet locals and make friends!

Reddit

Reddit has a large community, and there are several subreddits dedicated to connecting expats and travelers. You can use it to ask questions, get advice, and connect with others who are also living or traveling in the country.

Linkedin

LinkedIn is primarily a professional network, but you can also use it to connect with people who work in the same industry or have similar backgrounds. It can be useful to connect with people before you arrive and establish a few professional contacts to help you get started.

At WhereNext, we use Nomad List as a global community and then research more local ones for our destination. These are just a few examples of online communities you can use to meet people; please suggest any others that you think are appropriate for this destination.

Insurance

Travel insurance can provide financial protection and peace of mind for travellers in the event of unexpected situations or emergencies. It covers a wide range of needs--even some you might not expect!

Medical Coverage

Travel insurance can provide coverage for medical expenses if you become ill or injured while traveling. This can include coverage for doctor visits, hospital stays, and emergency medical transportation. It's also a good idea to ensure that your travel insurance covers COVID-19 related illness and delays!

Trip Cancellation and Interruption

Travel insurance can provide coverage if you need to cancel or interrupt your trip due to unexpected events such as illness, weather, or travel bans. It can also provide coverage if your trip is delayed or if your travel provider goes out of business.

Lost or Stolen Luggage

Travel insurance can provide coverage for lost or stolen luggage, as well as personal items such as passports and electronic devices.

Emergency Assistance and Evacuation

Many travel insurance plans offer emergency assistance services, such as providing information on local hospitals and doctors, assistance with replacing lost or stolen documents, and help with arranging transportation in the event of an emergency. At WhereNext we have partnered with Global Rescue for evacuation services, which are highly recommended if you are undertaking dangerous activities or are travelling to dangerous parts of the world.

Liability coverage

Travel insurance can also provide liability coverage in case you cause an accident or harm someone while you are traveling.

Travel insurance can provide financial protection and peace of mind for travellers in the event of unexpected situations or emergencies. It can help cover the costs of medical expenses, trip cancellations, lost or stolen luggage, and more. It's always a good idea to review the coverage and compare the different options available before making a decision. At WhereNext we both use and have partnered with Safety Wing for general travel insurance.

Entry Requirements

Here are some general travel tips regarding entry requirements that apply across all countries:

Passport

Make sure that your passport is valid for at least six months from the date of your arrival in the country you are visiting. Some countries will not allow you to enter if your passport is set to expire within a certain period of time.

Visa

Check with the embassy or consulate of the country you are visiting to see if you need a visa. Some countries require a visa for entry, while others do not. Make sure to apply for a visa well in advance of your trip as the process can take several weeks. Check the latest Visa requirements and if necessary get an online Visa with our partner iVisa.

Health Requirements and COVID-19 Rules

Check with the embassy or consulate of the country you are visiting to see if there are any health requirements for entry. Some countries require vaccinations or proof of medical insurance. Check the latest health requirements and if necessary get an online Visa with our partner iVisa.

Travel Insurance

Consider purchasing travel insurance, especially if you are traveling internationally. Travel insurance can cover you in the event of trip cancellation, medical emergencies, and other unexpected events. Our travel insurance partner is SafetyWing. For dangerous activities and/or countries consider a rescue service like those offered by our partner, Global Rescue.

Customs

Be familiar with the customs and laws of the country you are visiting. Some countries have strict laws regarding drug possession, alcohol consumption, and dress codes.

Currency

Check the currency exchange rate and make sure you have enough local currency for your trip. Some countries may not accept credit cards or travelers cheques, so it is always good to have some cash on hand. At WhereNext we recommend use a Wise debit card, which provides low cost currency conversions and ATM withdrawals.

Research the country

Research about the culture, customs and laws of the country you are visiting. It will help you to understand the place more and also prepare you better for the trip.

Contact Information

Make a copy of your passport and keep it in a separate place from your passport. Also, leave a copy of your itinerary and contact information with a friend or family member at home.

COVID Status

I am vaccinated 
Italy Open
Test
Not required
Quarantine
Not required

Check Visa Requirements

      Things to Do

      Italy is a country filled with art, architecture, history, culture, and natural beauty. Whether you're an art lover, a history buff, or just looking for a relaxing vacation, there's something for everyone in Italy. Here are the top 10 things to do in Italy:

      1. Visit the Colosseum in Rome

      The Colosseum is one of the most iconic and recognizable landmarks in the world. Built in 80 AD, this ancient amphitheater was once used for gladiatorial contests and public spectacles.

      2. Explore the canals of Venice

      Venice is a city like no other, with its winding canals, colorful buildings, and gondolas gliding through the water. Take a gondola ride through the city's picturesque waterways and admire the beautiful architecture.

      3. See the Leaning Tower of Pisa

      The Leaning Tower of Pisa is one of the most famous landmarks in Italy, and for good reason. The tower has been leaning since it was built in the 12th century and is a great spot to take photos.

      4. Take a day trip to Pompeii

      Pompeii offers a unique glimpse into the past, as this ancient Roman city was buried in ash and pumice after the eruption of Mount Vesuvius in AD 79. The well-preserved ruins of the city give visitors a sense of what life was like in ancient Rome.

      5. Visit the Vatican Museums in Rome

      The Vatican Museums are home to some of the world's most famous works of art, including the Sistine Chapel. The museums are also home to the Vatican Library, which contains one of the world's most extensive collections of books and manuscripts.

      6. Walk along the Amalfi Coast

      The Amalfi Coast is known for its stunning views and charming villages. The coastline is a great place to relax and enjoy the Mediterranean Sea.

      The Uffizi Gallery is one of the most famous art museums in the world and is home to a vast collection of masterpieces from the Italian Renaissance.

      8. See the Trevi Fountain in Rome

      The Trevi Fountain is one of the most famous fountains in the world and is a popular spot for visitors to toss coins and make wishes.

      9. Explore the ruins of Herculaneum

      Herculaneum was another Roman city buried by the eruption of Mount Vesuvius in AD 79. The ruins of the city offer a glimpse into the past and are well-preserved.

      10. Take a cooking class in Tuscany

      Tuscany is known for its delicious food, and taking a cooking class is a great way to learn about the region's culinary traditions.

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