Planning a first trip to Italy

Italy attracts visitors with irresistible food, fascinating architecture, a diverse scenery and stunning art. It offers so many possibilities it can be overwhelming. Consequently it gets obvious that Italy is a must-see when traveling Europe. So what should you not miss out when on your first trip in Italy?

I only had about one week to explore Italy so I went visiting Italy´s most famous places: Rome, Florence and Venice. It is definetely recommendable to take a few days for Rome. There are so many places to see: the spectacular Colosseum, the 2000-year-old Pantheon, the palace ruins of Palatino, sacred St Peter’s and the art-filled Vatican Museums. Trotting up the Spanish Steps and tossing a coin in the Trevi Fountain are things you should definetely do when exploring in Rome. After I spent a few days in Rome I went two days to Florence witnessing incomparable art in the Uffizi gallery, the delighting frescoes in the Duomo and being amazed by the anatomy of Michelangelo’s David.

The last stop during my trip to Italy was Venice. It was super touristic but I understand why. It is absolutely fascinating. Unfortunately liding down the Grand Canal by gondola or vaporetto (water bus) was too expensive for me but it was nice watching others on the water and it was totally enough to just walk around and explore Venice by getting lost within the 150 canals and 400 bridges. Touring around the grand Palazzo Ducale and gaping at the treasure-filled Basilica di San Marco are things you should definetely do in Venice. Furthermore I have to admit to have rarely seen such unique and fascinating architecture like in Venice. In Venice (but also in Rome and Florence of course) they also offer many classical concerts. Listening to Albinoni, Verdi, Puccini or Vivaldi in the evening in one of these old italian churches is a beautiful way to absorb italian culture. ­

I have been told already before that Italy is really beautiful but I was still surprised by how BEAUTIFUL it actually is and also the food was crazy good. To be honest I found Rome and Florence even more romantic than Paris.

In Rome I rented a little apartment for me and my friends which was great because that way we could save some money by preparing breakfast, snacks and sometimes have dinner (I always try doing that when traveling to save money and also to eat healthier). In Florence my friend and I did couchsurfing with an italian host which was also really nice. We took a car sharing from Rome to Florence and that way also got in contact with local people.

If you want to learn more about how I manage to travel on budget read here.

Next time I travel to Italy (and there will be definetely a next time) I would like to rent a car and that way be able to explore the little ancient villages that I have seen on my way between Rome and Florence. I have seen Orvieto for example that was already amazing to watch just from far away. I guess renting a car and exploring Italy that way would be awesome!

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