Italy

Things to do in Italy

There are endless possibilities for things to do in Italy. As the seat of Western Civilization, there are many museums and historical sites that are not to be missed. The ruins from the Roman Empire can be seen across the land, but nowhere as well as in Rome itself. Standing inside the Coliseum as the sun sets over the City of Seven Hills is an experience not soon forgotten. There are many beautiful ecclesiastical sites—the foremost being the illustrious Vatican, seat of power for the Catholic Church and former Holy Roman Empire. It’s worth a visit to admire St. Peter’s Basilica and gaze at the frescoed ceiling of the Sistine Chapel.

If you are wondering what to do in Italy for shopping—look no further than the cobblestone streets of Via de' Tornabuoni in Florence. Stroll through the designer shops and save an hour for a turn through the Ferragamo Museum before hitting the picturesque Ponte Vecchio. For high fashion, Milan is the go-to city, especially during fashion week when models and designers arrive in droves to roam the streets in their seasonal finery.

There are many outdoor things to do in Italy, from stunning beaches to gorgeous hikes and bike rides through vineyards and olive groves. Check out the Travel + Leisure guide to discover what to do in Italy.

Since 1909, Villa Aurelia has been the property of the American Academy in Rome. In 2002, the property reopened with much fanfare.

The tiny store, overflowing with silk- and cashmere-lined kidskin gloves in jewel colors, keeps the dying art of glove-making alive. Look for driving gloves with contrasting stitching and tiny buttons.

In a former church, the museum houses 183 sculptures by mid-20th-century Tuscan artist Marino Marini, famous for stylized equestrian works.

Serving some of the best gelato in the city for more than three decades, this tiny artisanal chocolate shop is situated behind a narrow glass storefront in the Santa Croce neighborhood.

To avoid one of Italy’s most dangerous, curvy, congested roads along the jagged Amalfi coastline during the summer months, this regularly scheduled ferry service connects 13 towns from Naples to Sapri.

Opened in November 2006 by young gastronome Alessandro Frassica, this rustic-chic foodies’ paradise is piled high with artisan-made Italian goodies—from local wines, salumi, and cheeses (try the runny goat cheese wrapped in chestnut leaves, or the steam-cooked, spiced tuna fish porchetta

Red travel guides guests on Ferrari tour throughout Italy.

The Madonna and Child Enthroned is housed here; t’s reportedly the only work by 15th-century Greek artist Antonio Falier da Negroponte.

Nearly 20,000 people stream through the Vatican every day, clueless and adrift, and end up dismissing the Sistine Chapel before they even get there. It’s almost impossible to appreciate the Vatican without an experienced guide.