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.

The power of St. Peter’s Basilica has influenced world history for the past 700 years and is plainly visible in the lavishly decorated interior, which includes gold, marble, and statuary, including Michelangelo’s Pieta. All of it, however, directs visitors to the bronze statue of St.

The weaving studio is located in a small workshop in Perugia's San Francesco delle Donne, a deconsecrated 13th-century church. Founded by Giuditta Brozzetti in 1921 to showcase the handwork of village women, it's now managed by her daughter and granddaughter.

At the eight-room hotel, made up of two country-style houses, you can take art classes on the lawn.

The museum houses an impressive collection of African and Asian art.

On a 12-day Italian voyage on Oceania’s Regatta, you can sample bottles in Rome and Sicily and spend a day at Tenuta dell’Ornellaia, a 240-acre estate in Tuscany.

Carved horse heads and Roman gods crowd the studio’s shelves. But collector-worthy contemporary pieces, such as transparent spiral candleholders and striped vases, also abound.

The shop makes Tuscany's most exclusive, sought-after cheeses.

Watch artisans craft music boxes and elaborate inlaid tables in their ateliers. You can often buy direct from the craftsmen; otherwise comb the stores on the Via San Cesareo for a wider choice.

This storied 1960s disco installed in a sea cavern—complete with a glass floor for viewing the fish swimming below—plays up its offbeat vibe: at the height of the evening, local fishermen arrive to pull fish out of the sinkhole at the edge of the dance floor with a net.

Bibliophiles will bask in the variety of reading materials: everything from rare and used books about Venice to contemporary mysteries autographed by local writer Donna Leon.