10 Days in Italy: 4 Incredible 10 Day Italy Itineraries for Any Travelers

10 Days in Italy: 4 Incredible 10 Day Italy Itineraries for Any Travelers

Spending 10 Days in Italy and wondering where in Italy you should visit? This 10 day Italy itinerary will give you 4 amazing itineraries from first time in Italy to Italy honeymoon itinerary to adventures in Dolomites or Sicily.

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Italy is one of my favorite countries to visit in Europe. In fact I have been to Italy 5 times on different occasions and had a chance to visit different regions of Italy every time.

From the beautiful lakes in Northern Italy to the stunning coasts in the South, Italy simply has too much to offer. It really is hard to choose what to see in 10 days in Italy since there are so much to see and do there.

Therefore, I will provide 4 different incredible Italy itineraries for you to plan your 10 days in Italy trip. These 4 different Italy itineraries will cover different parts of Italy and different interests you may have whether you are visiting Italy for the first time or looking for a romantic getaway or honeymoon in Italy.

pinterest pin: 10 days in Italy 4 amazing itineraries with recommendations on the best things to do and see in Italy

Is 10 days enough for Italy or do you need more time?

Your first question is probably whether 10 days is sufficient for Italy or if you should spend 2 weeks or more.

10 Days in Italy is actually perfect because you get enough time to fully explore a region or you can hop around a couple of different regions in Italy to experience everything. With 10 days in Italy you don’t need to feel rushed either!

But of course if you have time for a 2 or 3 week trip to Italy, you can probably combine a couple of the itineraries below to explore more. Have this 10 day Italy itinerary in mind, feel free to add a city or two to make it a 2 week itinerary if you have more time.

When to Visit Italy

Italy is a very diverse country in terms of culture, food, and weather. Since the country is very “long”, the weather in Northern Italy can be very different from Southern Italy. The difference in weather and temperature also means you can do very different activities in each region all year round.

Southern Italy is generally much warmer than Northern Italy, so it’s better to visit during shoulder season (May/ September or October) to avoid the melting heat. But if you are thinking about going to the islands (Sardinia, Sicily) then perhaps June or July would be better to ensure hot sunny days and beach weather.

If you are thinking about visiting places like Rome, Florence and Venice then do yourself a favor and avoid visiting in the summer.

Summer in Italy is generally very hot, humid and crowded. Since Italy is one of the most popular destinations in the world, many parents take their kids to Italy during summer break so you should try to avoid that.

I visited Rome and Florence once in July and I almost fainted from the humidity and the hot temperature. Therefore, try to go to Italy in May or late September/ October and avoid the summer momths.

If you are visiting Northern Italy like the Dolomites, you can either do it in the summer/ September to hike and see the beautiful lakes or in the winter for skiing and snowboarding. The mountainous regions will offer different experiences during different times of the year.

This is a photo of buildings at Lake Como | 10 Day Italy Itinerary

What is the best way to see Italy in 10 days?

In this itinerary for Italy I am going to cover 4 different Italy itineraries for your 10 day Italy trip. However this is by no means the only places you should visit in Italy since there are so much to see in Italy.

If It’s your first time in Italy, follow itinerary #1 to see the “classic” Italian cities including Rome, Florence & Tuscany Towns, and Venice.

If you are looking for a romantic vacation or honeymoon in Italy, then follow Italy itinerary #2 to first spend some time in Rome then go south to the Amalfi Coast.

If you have been to the most popular cities in Italy and are looking for something unique in Italy, then head down south to Sicily and follow Italy itinerary #3.

Lastly if you are looking to see pristine nature and hike in Italy, then follow Italy itinerary #4 in Northern Italy for all the beautiful lakes and hikes in the Dolomites.

10 Days in Italy – Itinerary #1: Classic Italy (Rome, Florence, Tuscany, Venice)

Rome Colosseum photo for a classic first time in Italy itinerary

If this is your first time in Italy then you should do the “classic” Italy itinerary where you visit the most famous cities and touristy sites in Italy: Rome, Florence (along with other towns in Tuscany) and Venice. With this classic first timer Italy itinerary, you can transport yourself back to ancient Rome, discover arts and architecture in Florence and stroll the streets and see the canals in Venice.

This “classic Italy route” is also what I did the first time I was in Italy and after all these other visits I still think it’s the best 10 Days in Italy for your first time in Italy.

Day 1 – 3: Rome & the Vatican 
Day 4 – 5: Florence & Pisa
Day 6-8: Tuscany day trip from Florence
Day 9: Venice
Day 10: Fly home

For this first timer Italy itinerary, you will want to fly into Rome and out of Venice. Don’t book a round trip flight to/ out of Rome to save time since it takes over 3 hours to get to Rome from Venice.

Day 1 to 3 in Rome & Vatican

Below is the map of Rome with colored pins to show you what you can do each day in Rome (yellow is for Day 1, red is for Day 2, purple is for Day 3)

For your 3 days in Rome in this Italy Itinerary, you should consider getting the Rome Pass to skip the line save money on attractions and transportation.

Start your Rome adventure with some of the most famous spots in the city.

Depending on when you fly into Rome, you may not be able to do everything under “day 1” in Rome, and that’s ok! You can always pick and choose things that interest you the most.

During your first day in Rome (and in Italy), you should see the most famous attractions in Rome such as the Roman Colosseum, The Roman Forum, and Musei Capitolini (with the ruin of the statue of Constantine).

Roman-Colosseum things to see in Rome, Italy

Roman Forum: 10 days in Italy Itinerary
The Roman Forum
What to do in Rome during 10 days in Italy | ruin of the statue of Constantine

As you explore Rome, be sure to stop by the famous Altare della Patria (Altar of the Fatherland), which is a beautiful monument built for Vittorio Emanuele II, the first king of the unified Italy. You can buy a ticket to go up the elevator to enjoy a 360 degree sweeping view of Rome. From the altar you can see the Colosseum, Roman Forum, Palatine hill and even Trevi Fountain.

Altare-della-Patria mocument in Rome, Italy

If you have the Rome Explorer Pass this is included withe pass, as well as the Colosseum and Roman Forum.

Another interesting place to visit in Rome is the Mouth of Truth (Bocca della Verita). This was featured in the famous movie Roman Holiday. Legend has it if you are a liar and you put your hand inside the Mouth of Truth, you will lose your hand (of course it is not real).

Mouth of Truth in Rome | Best things to do in Rome on a Italy itinerary

During your second day in Rome, you can visit famous sites include the beautiful Trevi Fountain (suggest you go early in the morning to avoid crowd), Pantheon, and Piazza della Rotonda, the Spanish Steps.

Keep in mind that the Trevi Fountain gets cleaned 3 times a week, on Monday, Wednesday and Friday between 8 to 9am. The water is turned off during the cleaning hours, so do not visit during that time.

Trevi Fountain in Rome during the day
Trevi Fountain
Pantheon in Rome
The Pantheon

How to spend 10 days in Italy for a first time visitor | The Spanish Steps in the early morning hours in Rome with flowers
The Spanish Steps

Another stop to make is to see the Spanish Steps, a set of famous steps located in the Spanish Square in Rome. Fun fact: our hostel in Rome during our first visit was located very close to the Spanish Steps, so we got to see this everyday!

If you have time, pay a visit to the beautiful Villa Borghese, a public park and green space. There are museums, galleries and other buildings in the garden. It’s a nice getaway from the crowded touristy center of Rome.

Best things to do and see in Rome | Villa Borghese

If you are not too tired, then check out the neighborhood of Trastevere, one of the cutest neighborhoods in Rome with a ton of restaurants and bars.

On your last day in Rome, you will visit the Vatican, which is NOT in Italy, and Castel Sant’Angelo.

Keep in mind that the Rome Explorer Pass covers all of the attractions on this day.

The two most noteworthy places to visit in the Vatican is the St. Peter’s Basilica and the Vatican Museum (along with Sistine Chapel).

St. Peter's Basilica in the Vatican view from the top | Itinerary for Italy in 10 days

The Vatican Museum is a must see in the Vatican and the line sometimes is even longer than the one at St. Peter’s Basilica. That’s why it’s better to go during off season when the line is shorter (imagine waiting in line for an hour in 40C weather).

If you are in the Vatican Museum then you have to stop by Sistine Chapel, one of the most famous chapels in the world. The interior of Sistine Chapel has the famous painting by Michelangelo.

Sistine Chapel Michelangelo's Painting on Ceiling | Best things to do in Rome Italy

If you have more time after visiting the Vatican then you can stop by Castel Sant’Angelo, a beautiful museum that used to be a fortress and castle. Even if you decide not to go inside, the outside of the museum is a beautiful site and attracts numerous instagrammers and photographers every year.

Castel Sant'Angelo in Rome

Wondering what else you can do in Rome? Check out the 10 best things to do in Rome for first time visitors.

Day 4 – 5: Florence

After 3 days in Rome and Vatican, it is time to travel north to the birth place of the Renaissance, Florence.

Florence is actually my favorite city in Italy and from what I have heard from other people, most people prefer Florence over Rome. The reason I like Florence is because the historical center is a lot more artsy and cuter compare to Rome. I also love all the architecture and the red roofs in Florence, making me feel like I am walking inside a history book when I am in Florence.

You can take a train to from Rome to Florence and it takes about 2 hours direct. To book train tickets in Italy, I’ve always used https://www.italiarail.com/ .

Duomo di Siena | The best tourist attraction in Florence during your 10 days trip to Italy
Duomo di Siena

Generally if this is your first time in Florence I would suggest 1.5 days to 2 days to explore Florence. Some of the timing is affected by how long you need to wait in line to get into different attractions and museums in Florence (since you know, Florence is super popular).

Read Next: See my detailed Florence itinerary.

I highly highly recommend that you book all the tickets for attractions in Florence online ahead of time during peak travel season to avoid disappointments. The map below shows the major sights of Florence with the yellow pins as things you can visit if you have extra time.

Some of the must-see places in Florence for a first time visitor include the famous Duomo (Florence Cathedral), Uffizi Gallery, Accademia Gallery, Ponte Vecchio, and Piazzale Michelangelo.

Florence sculptures as you explore the city | how to see Italy in ten days as a first time traveler

It would be very helpful to read up on the history of Florence a little bit before you visit so you can enjoy your trip to Florence even more. If I were to be honest, if you can only visit one place in Florence, it would be the Duomo. The interior will amaze you and the view from the top is simply jaw dropping.

Dress code for the Duomo: similar to St. Peter’s Basilica in the Vatican, you should be aware that to enter the Duomo you should not wear short shorts, sandals, sunglasses, hats. Basically cover your shoulders and knees or you risk not getting into the Duomo.

top of the Duomo in Florence
View of Giotto’s Bell Tower From the Duomo

If you are an art lover then you definitely would love Uffizi Gallery and may need a whole day to explore this huge gallery.

You may have never heard of Accademia Gallery but I bet you have seen the famous sculpture of David. In fact most people who visit Accademia Gallery go to see the naked David.

David Statue at Accademia Gallery

If you are looking for the best panoramic view of Florence that is free, then head over to Piazzale Michelangelo for sunset. Most of the postcard image of Florence were probably taken at this location.

View of Florence from Piazzale-Michelangelo
View from PIazzale Michelangelo

Lastly if you are into designer brands there is a shopping outlet called The Mall in Tuscany. The Mall is a must-see for those who are into designer brands and want to get a good deal. There is a bus to the outlet from Florence that takes about an hour. Most of my friends have been to The Mall and got amazing deals on designer bags and shoes.

Day 5: Day Trip from Florence: Pisa

Pisa is a very nice day trip (or half day) from Florence since it’s close and easy to get to. There is direct train from Florence to Pisa that takes about an hour and the train runs very frequently. There is no need to pre-book this ticket because there are frequent trains and buses.

You can spend as little as two hours in Pisa or as long as a day, depending on what you like and how much of Pisa you want to explore.

If you just want to take a look at the Leaning tower of Pisa and the surrounding area then a couple of hours is more than enough. I’ve been twice but never went up the tower but it’s hilarious to see everyone posing against the towers pretending they are pushing it or leaning against it.

If you want to learn more about Pisa including where to eat and where to stay, check out this blog on what to do in Pisa.

Pisa, Italy with tourists looking at the iconic buildings | First time Italy itinerary

Leaning Tower of Pisa is one of the best day trips from Florence during 10 days in Italy trip

Day 6 – 8: Tuscany: Siena, San Gimignano, Chianti, Cinque Terre

The great thing about Florence is that it’s not only a great city oh its own, but it is in the Tuscany region which has other amazing towns to visit and things to do. I’ll name a few that I visited personally as day trips but definitely change around the suggested itinerary to fit your own interest.

Siena

Siena is a famous city in Tuscany known for the medieval architecture, cuisine, art, and the Palio, a bi-annual horse race. Most people come to Siena as a day trip from Florence which is what I did with a tour, but you can certainly stay overnight if you have enough time.

One of the main sights of Siena is Piazza del Campo, the central square where the horse race is held. It’s also part of the UNESCO world heritage site in the historical center of Siena. Main buildings in Piazza del Campo include Tower of Mangia and the Palazzo Pubblico.

Tower of Mangia in Siena
Tower of Mangia

The Siena Cathedral and Basilica of San Domenico are also important religious sights in Siena. The interior of Siena Cathedral is very pretty and worth a tour inside.

If you want to see the local market in Siena then remember that Wednesday is the market day.

Duomo di Siena
Duomo di Siena
Interior of Duomo di Siena
Interior of Duomo di Siena

One thing unique about Siena is the preservation of the ward culture, otherwise known as Contrada. There are 17 contradas in Siena and each of them has their own emblem and symbol, which is displayed during the Palio horse race, taking place in July 2 and August 16 every year. Therefore if you were to visit Siena those dates will be the most festive (although hot and crowded).

San Gimignano

San Gimignano is another stop on the tour I took from Florence along with Siena. San Gimignano is a really cute small medieval hill town known for its gelato, wine, city walls and medieval architecture including the well preserved 14 towers.

It’s most famous gelato shop, Gelataria Dondoli, actually won the world champion Gelato award and named the best gelato in the world. There of course will be a long line at this place and there are nearby gelato shops that will claim they are the best gelato, don’t fall for it. But honestly you can’t go wrong with any gelato in Italy.

Gelataria Dondoli in San Gimignano during a day trip from Florence | Best Italy itinerary

Other things to do in San Gimignano includes exploring its city walls, walk around Piazza Della Cisterna, Piazza Duomo, the towers and get lost in the little streets. But note that if you are visiting with a tour, you will most likely be in San Gimignano in the afternoon and it will be pretty crowded with all the other tour buses.

San Gimignano

Chianti

When you think about the rolling hills of Tuscany and all the wineries then Chianti is the place to be. You can either rent a car from Florence and drive here for a day to explore the country side and the wine farms or you can take a day tour from Florence.

The tour I took included Sienna and San Gimignano along the way and we stopped for lunch at one of the wineries in Tuscany. Totally depend on how much freedom and time you want to spend in each town before deciding whether to self drive in Tuscany or take an organized tour.

wineries in Chianti Tuscany | Visit Tuscany during Italy vacation

Cinque Terre

Cinque Terre is somewhere I had always wanted to visit after seeing photos of it online. The colorful houses on the hill with the water in front make Cinque Terre the most post card perfect place.

Best Florence day trip to Cinque Terre during a 10 day to 2 week Italy trip

There are 5 villages in Cinque Terre and they are connected by train, boats, and hiking trails. The most famous villages (and the ones in post cards) in Cinque Terre are Manarola, Riomaggiore and Vernazza. But if you have time you should visit all five villages as they are all different and have their own uniqueness.

Many people hike between the towns of Monterosso, Vernazza and Corniglia for the best view of Cinque Terre but you can also access these view points without doing the full hike.

You can visit Cinque Terre either as a day trip from Florence or spend a couple of days there. I do wish I had spent at least one night in Cinque Terre to fully explore and enjoy the five villages. But the day trip we took was also very nice.

Day 9-10: Venice

The last stop of your classic 10 Day Italy itinerary will be Venice, the famous water town in Italy made of canals and bridges. Many people dream of riding in the gondola in Venice and I do admit mornings in Venice can be romantic (gets too hot and humid later on during the day in the summer).

Grand Canal Venice

Venice is about a two hour train ride from Florence. To get to Venice from Cinque Terre you will first need to take the train from La Spezia to Florence or Milan then take another train to Venice. It will take you at least half a day or more to travel between Cinque Terre to Venice so keep that in mind.

st. Mark's Square Venice
St. Mark’s Square

Venice is not a big place and it’s generally more expensive than Florence or Rome in terms of accommodation and food. The most famous things to see in Venice include St. Mark’s Square, St. Mark’s Basilica, Doge’s Palace, Rialto Bridge and the Grand Canal.

If you are looking for a more detailed 2 days in Venice itinerary check out the awesome post I linked.

Ponte di Rialto
Rialto Bridge

If you have time you can take a day trip to Burano, a colorful island near Venice that’s all the rage on Instagram now. Another island you can visit is Murano, known for its glass making.

Burano, italy

Venice has an international airport you can fly out of Venice to go back home after your classic 10 day Italy itinerary.


10 Days in Italy Itinerary #2: Romantic Holiday/ Honeymoon in Italy: Rome, Naples, Amalfi Coast

Day 1-3: Rome
Day 4: Naples/ Day Trip from Naples
Day 5: Ischia Island
Day 6: Sorrento
Day 7: Ravello/ Amalfi: 1 day
Day 8: Positano: 1 day
Day 9: Capri
Day 10: Fly out

The Amalfi Coast is a region in Italy that I had seen so many photos of. The beautiful coast plus the colorful houses on the hill gave me so much wanderlust that I had to pay a visit one day.

After visiting the Amalfi Coast I finally understood why people would go there for honeymoon. The entire area is just so beautiful and each town has its own uniqueness and beauty. You can spend all 10 days in the Amalfi Coast and not get bored. However if you just want to have a taste of the Amalfi Coast, then follow this romantic 10 Day Italy itinerary.

Day 1 – 3: Rome/ Vatican

For the romantic trip to Amalfi Coast, you can either fly into Naples or Rome. For simplicity, I will just assume you are initially flying into Rome to see some of the most famous sights of Italy. Again, I recommend 3 days to see Rome and the Vatican. See the classic 10 day Italy itinerary above on what to do in Rome and the Vatican.

Day 4: Naples & Day Trip

You can take the train from Rome to Naples. There are a total of 13 trains per day from Rome to Naples and the journey takes less than 1.5 hours.

Naples is one of the largest cities in Italy after Rome and Milan and it’s an important city in Southern Italy. Situated at Naples Bay, Naples is a diverse city and a good base to travel in Southern Italy. Naples is known for its pizza among other Italian cuisines.

Naples is a big city itself, so if you decide to skip Rome, you can spend two days in Naples to see Castle Nuovo, Naples National Archaeological Museum, Royal Palace of Naples, Museo Cappella Sansevero, etc. I personally didn’t really spend too much time in Naples because I only had 10 days in Italy. Instead I opted for a day trip out of Naples the same day I arrived.

There are several day trip options from Naples and all of them are wonderful. If you are into history and ruins, then be sure to take the day trip to Pompeii, which is easily reachable by train from Naples. You can also take a tour from Naples to both Pompeii Ruins and Mount Vesuvius (or visit Vesuvius with a guide by itself without Pompeii).

A wonderful day trip from Naples is to visit the Royal Palace of Caserta, which is a former royal residence that was modeled after the Palace of Versailles. Caserta is not that well known so if you want to avoid crowds and see a beautiful place I would highly recommend this.

Royal Palace of Caserta Italy

Day 5 of 10: Ischia Island

Compare to its neighbor Capri, Ischia Island is less visited and lesser known but nevertheless beautiful.

Ischia Island is a large volcanic island about 1-1.5 hour ferry ride from Naples and is known for its hot springs, beach, and its medieval Aragonese Castle.

Aragonese Castle, Ischia Italy | Romantic trip to Italy

Other famous places to visit on Ischia include the Gardens of La Mortella, the Gardens of Villa Ravino, Villa La Colombaia, Maronti Beach, Bay of Sorgeto (hot springs), Citara Beach, etc. Again, you can spend as little as a day or as long as 2-3 days on Ischia.

Italy Ischia Island Southern Italy

There is another island in Naples Bay called Procida. I personally didn’t get to visit this island but it has many colorful houses along with a nice view of the water.

Day 6: Sorrento

After a couple of days in the Naples area it is time to travel south by train to Sorrento, the base to explore Amalfi Coast.

The train ride between Naples and Sorrento is about an hour but the feel of the two cities is completely different.

Sorrento Italy dinner by the water and boat | best place to stay when visiting the Amalfi Coast in Italy

While Sorrento is still not really considered the Amalfi Coast, many people (myself included) use Sorrento as a base to explore the Amalfi Coast because the town is larger and cheaper than the towns in Amalfi coast, and there are many daily buses connecting Sorrento to the various towns of the Amalfi Coast.

Depending on when you arrive in Sorrento, you can walk around the town especially on Via San Cesareo, have dinner by the water. You will also use Sorrento as a base to travel to Capri later.

Day 7: Ravello & Amalfi

Ravello is one of my favorite towns on the Amalfi Coast. It’s less popular than the town of Amalfi and Positano but it’s quaint and pretty.

Villa Fufolo Ravello Italy Amalfi Coast is one of the prettiest towns on the Amalfi Coast
Villa Fufolo

Some of my favorite places to visit in Ravello include Villa Cimbrone (famous for the Terrace of Infinity) and Villa Fufolo, another beautiful garden to visit and relax in.

The bus that takes you from Sorrento to Ravello actually would stop by Amalfi first. Since Ravello is not a huge town, you can get there early, spend 3-4 hours and then take the bus down to Amalfi.

Villa Cimbrone Ravello Italy
Villa Cimbrone

Amalfi is where the name Amalfi Coast came from so you know it’s an important town to visit. Being one of the largest towns on the Amalfi Coast, the town of Amalfi has a large cathedral which is the most popular attraction.

Amalfi Cathedral Amalfi Coast Italy
Amalfi Cathedral

Besides visiting the Amalfi Cathedral, you can also take a look at the Museum of Paper, or take a stroll along the beach. If you have time and want to visit an emerald grotto, check out Grotta dello Smeraldo. You can take a boat tour from Amalfi to visit this Grotto.

Day 8: Positano

When you see a post card of Amalfi Coast most likely you’d be staring at the colorful houses on the hills of Positano. Positano is one of the most beautiful and visited towns on the Amalfi Coast and there is a direct bus from Sorrento to Positano. If you are short on time, take a day trip to Positano to visit the beach, get lost in the alleys of Positano or hike up the hills.

Positano Italy Amalfi Coast is the best place to have a honeymoon in Italy

Many couples spend their honeymoon in Positano when they visit the Amalfi Coast and I can totally see why. I do wish that I spent the night in Positano and see it from the water. One popular thing to do in Positano is to take a boat out to the water during sunset. But be warned hotels and restaurants are not cheap in Positano.

Positano Italy the classic view of Positano from a parking lot

If you are spending the night in Positano, you can also potentially do the famous hike Path of the Gods between villages along the Amalfi Coast for some stunning views.

Day 9: Capri

Ah Capri, such a scenic and beautiful island! There are regular ferry services between Sorrento and Capri and I do suggest that you get to Capri early in the morning when the sea is calmer.

One reason for that is that one of the most famous attractions in Capri is the Blue Grotto, but since the cave opening is quite small, if the water is rough, boats will not be able to get inside.

But honestly most time of the year the Blue Grotto is closed due to choppy water so don’t be too disappointed if you don’t get to see it (there is another one in Croatia off the coast of Hvar if you miss the one in Capri).

I recommend spend the night in Capri since the island is not small and there are a lot of things you can do. A few other things besides the Blue Grotto that you can do in Capri during one day:

  • Mount Solaro Chairlift: Get on a bus from the dock area and ride to Piazza Vittoria in Anacapri to access the Mount Solaro Chairlift. The view during the chairlift is amazing and relaxing and the top of chairlift is amazing.
Capri View after chairlift with famous statue raising his hand
View after getting off the Chair lift
  • Walk down to Marina Grande from Villa San Michele (~30 min walking)
Capri Boat Tour
  • Get a boat tour around Capri and see the famous Natural Arches and other more!

Day 10: Departure from Amalfi Coast

After visiting all the famous towns in the Amalfi Coast it’s time to finish the Romantic 10 days in Italy itinerary. The best way to travel back is to either go back to Naples or go directly to Rome to fly out.


10 Days in Italy Itinerary #3: Adventure in Sicily

Day 1-2: Rome & the Vatican
Day 3-4: Syracuse
Day 5: Syracuse to Agrigento
Day 6: Agrigento
Day 7-8: Marsala/ Trapani
Day 9-10: Palermo & fly out

Located in the Mediterranean Sea, Sicily is one of the largest islands in Italy. With its diverse landscape and the different towns, Sicily itself can take as much as 2 weeks to fully explore.

In Sicily you can do a range of things, from visiting the historical ruins to chilling on the beach to hiking Mount Etna, the tallest and most active volcano in Italy.

For the purpose of this Sicilian Adventure 10 Day Italy itinerary, we will allocate 7-8 days to see the highlights of Sicily plus 2 days in Rome/ Vatican.

Day 1 – 2: Rome & the Vatican

Similar to the previous itineraries, start your 10 days in Italy in Rome, where most likely your international flights will land. I have shortened the time you spend in Rome to just 2 days in this sample Italy itinerary so you have more time to explore Sicily.

Day 3: Syracuse (Yellow Pins)

There are a number of different airports in Sicily since it is a big island. The two major airports in Sicily you will be flying into will either be Catania Airport on the east side of Sicily or Palermo Airport in western Sicily.

If you want to visit eastern Sicily such as Taormina, Messina, Syracuse, Enna, etc, you will want to fly into Catania Airport. If you want to visit Palermo, Cafalu, Trapani (Marsala), or Agrigento, you should fly to Palermo Airport.

Syracuse (Siracusa) is a city on eastern Sicily, known for its rich Greek architecture, history and Greek influenced cuisine. This city was one of the most important cities in ancient times as it first was under the Greek rule, then later became part of the Roman Republic and Byzantine Empire. It was even once the capital of the Byzantine Empire. In current day, Syracuse is listed as a UNESCO World Heritage Site.

Since there are a lot to see in Syracuse and it’s one of the nicest cities to visit in Sicily, I added this as stop 1 of your Sicily vacation.

You can split your Syracuse trip into one day in Ortigia and one day in Syracuse.

Ortigia is the historical center of Syracuse and it’s actually a very small island connected to Syracuse by bridge. It’s possible to walk, which is what we did and there are a ton of things to see in Ortigia. I personally really liked Ortigia because it felt really safe and well preserved.

Cathedral of Syracuse in Siracusa Sicily | Sicily Italy itinerary
Cathedral of Syracuse

Things you should see in the old town in Ortigia include, Temple of Apollo, Cathedral of Syracuse (used to be a Greek doric temple but now a Catholic church), Fontana di Diana (historical fountain in Piazza Archimede that attributes to the goddess of hunting), Chiesa dello Spirito Santo (church by the water, built during the Spanish domination of Sicily), and Fonte Aretusa, a storied fountain with beautiful ocean view.

streets of Syracuse in Italy during 10 day Italy itinerary

Day 4: Exploring Syracuse (Siracusa) (Red Pins)

After spending the first day in Sicily exploring Ortigia, you can visit more historical places in Syracuse.

One of the most noteworthy places in Syracuse is the Greek Theater (Teatro Greco), located on the Temenite hill. Other note worthy places in Syracuse include the Ear of Dionysius (limestone cave) and the Catacomb of San Giovanni.

Greek Theater in Syracuse Sicily

If you don’t want to get around on your own to these sites in Siracusa, don’t worry there are many tours you can take such as this Siracusa food & wine tour and this full day tour to see Siracusa and Noto.

Day 5: Siracusa to Agrigento

Agrigento is another major town in southern Sicily that attract millions of tourists a year. It’s a city with heavy Greek, Roman and Byzantine influence and it has some extraordinary Greek ruins not seen anywhere else.

Agrigento Town in Sicily Italy

How To Get To Agrigento From Siracusa

When I visited a few years ago, there was no direct way to get to Agrigento from Syracuse so I’m not sure if that has changed.

Siracusa to Agrigento by train: There are trains going from Siracusa to Agrigento but I don’t think they are direct. You can check out train schedule on the Italy train booking website but it looks like you may have to change a few times and it takes quite a while (5+ hours).

Siracusa to Agrigento by Bus: I personally found taking a bus to be the easier way, which requires you to take a bus from Siracusa back to the Catania Airport (1-1.5 hours) then take another bus from Catania Airport to Agrigento (3 hours). The bus company from Siracusa to Catania Airport is run by AST and the bus company from Catania Airport to Agrigento is run by SAIS.

Since it will take you more than half a day to get to Agrigento from Siracusa, you will not be doing too much in Agrigento the first day.

I suggest that you spend the afternoon/ evening checking out the historic center of Agrigento. The historic town center shows many buildings from the Christian era of Agrigento.

Take a walk along Via Atenea, one of the main roads in the historical center of Agrigento. In addition, check out the Cathedral of San Gerlando, Cathedral of Santa Maria del Fiore, etc. The center of Agrigento is pretty colorful as well, including this beautiful colorful steps.

colorful steps of Agrigento in Sicily Italy during unique 10 days in Italy

Agrigento Cathedral in Sicily when spending 10 days in Italy

Day 6: Agrigento: Ruins & Turkish Step

One reason Agrigento is so popular for visitors is because of the ruins outside of the city. In the Valley of the Temples, a UNESCO World Heritage Site, you will see the temples that once stood during the Ancient times that dates back to the 500 BC.

Some of the most well reserved and frequently visited temples in the Valley of the Temples include the Temple of Concordia, the Temple of Juno Lacinia, the Temple of Castor and Pollux, and the Temple of Hercules.

Temple of Concordia near Agrigento in Sicily Italy when traveling to Italy
Temple of Concordia
Temple of Juno Lacinia
Temple of Juno Lacinia

Going past the Valley of the Temples you will eventually come to the Turkish Steps (Scala dei Turchi) near Porto Empedocle. It’s a sedimentary rock in white color and lies between two sandy beaches. From far away the different layers of the rock carved from the wind make the white rock look like steps. People can walk up and down the Turkish steps and enjoy the view from top.

Turkish Steps in Agrigento Sicily is a great day trip from Agrigento

Scala dei turchi near Agrigento in Sicily Italy

I personally think Agrigento has the best food in Sicily and I’m sure many websites will agree. One of the specialties in Agrigento is the red prawns with sorbet, which you will find in most local restaurants.

Red Prawns in Agrigento Sicily

Day 7 & 8: Marsala & Trapani

Marsala is located on the westernmost tip of Sicily in the province of Trapani. It is labeled as the “real Sicily” so you can imagine how exciting it is to visit Marsala.

Marsala has a rich history given it has been ruled under the Carthaginians, Romans and Arabs and it is famous for its wine as well as the landing of Giuseppe Garibaldi, who lead to the unification of Italy.

There are a lot of things to do in Marsala, such as walking around the historical center, relax on white sand beach, go to a fish market (which turns into a vibrant bar at night), visit a local winery and visiting the archeological museum.

There are also a lot of day trips you can take from Trapani given its proximity to the various islands. Some of the best places to visit as a day trip from Marsala and Trapani include the Stagnone Nature Reserve (especially for sunset), Isola San Pantaleo, Isola Grande, Isola Favignana, Isola di Levanzo, Erice, Mazara del Vallo and San Vito Lo Cap.

You can check out my detailed guide on the best things to do in Marsala as well as the best things to do in Trapani.

Day 9 & 10: Palermo

There are buses from Marsala to Palermo that take about 2.5 hours, making it easy to go to Palermo on your last stop of your 10 days in Italy trip.

Palermo is a big city and is actually the tourism, cultural and economic capital of Sicily. It is rich in history, culture and known for its art, music and food and good weather.

Palermo Sicily is an unique place to visit for any Italy itinerary

There are many historical landmarks in Palermo, such as the Palermo Cathedral, Norman Palace, Cattedrale di Palermo, Massimo Theater, numerous churches, etc. There are also a few markets that are popular such as Market Ballaro, Mercato del Capo and Borgo Vecchio. Market Ballaro is the largest and oldest market of them all and it is unlike regular street markets you would expect.

Palermo Sicily is one of the best places to visit in Sicily

Palermo is also a day trip away from various nice beaches and the one I liked a lot was Mondello Beach, about an hour by bus 806 from Palermo. I do suggest buying a round trip bus ticket if you can in Palermo because I had difficulty finding where to buy the bus ticket from Mondello Beach.

Mondello Beach in Sicily is a great day trip from Palermo during 10 day trip to Italy

Mondello Beach Sicily is the best thing to do near Palermo

There are numerous restaurants along Mondello Beach and the beach itself is lovely.

Besides Mondello Beach, there are also many other beaches. Read this beach guide from Palermo to see more.

At the end of your 10 days in Italy – Sicily Adventure you can fly out of Palermo.


10 Days in Italy Itinerary #4: Dolomites Nature and Hiking Trip

Day 1: Venice
Day 2 – 8 Dolomites
Day 9: Lake Como or Lake Garda
Day 10: Milan & fly out

The Dolomites in Northern Italy bordering Austria is an amazing place to visit all year round. In the summer in the Dolomites you can see all the green, blue and turquoise lakes and all the hiking trails are open. In the winter the Dolomites is the destination for snow sports.

The Dolomites is a big area with different provinces such as South Tyrol, Trentino and Belluno. The Dolomites used to belong to Austria and was part of the World War I. Therefore the Dolomites have names of places in both Italian and German.

This itinerary is best for someone who likes nature and hiking.

How To Get To the Dolomites and Get Around the Dolomites

The easiest way to get to the Dolomites is to fly into Venice in Italy.

Renting a car and driving may be the easiest if you want more flexibility over your itinerary and where you want to go/ stay. We used Discover Cars to find a cheap car for our Dolomites trip. There are also plenty of buses in the Dolomites in the summer time, although your schedule will depend on the public transportation schedule.

Day 1: Venice – Arrival

This itinerary assumes that you are flying into Venice and out of Milan. Depending on the time you fly into Venice, you can either directly rent a car from the Venice international airport and drive out to the Dolomites or spend the afternoon/ evening in Venice and go to the Dolomites the next day.

Venice Grand Canal

Assuming you are spending the first night in Venice, I suggest you check out St. Mark’s Square, St. Mark’s Basilica, Doge’s Palace, Rialto Bridge and the Grand Canal.

Day 2: Venice to Cortina d’Ampezzo

It takes about 2 hours to drive from Venice to Cortina d’Ampezzo without detours. Cortina d’Ampezzo is a larger town in the province of Belluno.

Many people stay in Cortina because it’s relatively close to visit Lago di Braies (Pragser Wildsee) and Tre Cime hike (Drei Zinnen). and there are many restaurants in Cortina compare to other smaller towns in the area.

On the drive from Venice to Cortina you can take your time and do some detours to stop by different lakes such as Lago Welsperg and Baita Segantini. I would spend today just driving around and exploring different lakes before eventually get to Cortina d’Ampezzo.

Lago Welsperg is an alpine lake in the Canali Valley and a suitable place for the entire family. It’s not hard to get to the lake and since the lake is not as popular as some of the other lakes in the Dolomites, you can expect less tourists compare to the famous Lago di Braies. Lago Welsperg is about a 2 hour drive from Venice Airport.

Baita Segantini is a popular hiking area in Trentino not too far from Lago Welsperg that also has a small lake. It’s about an 1 hour hike near the top of Passo Rolle. You will be hiking through meadows and eventually reach a chalet and a pretty lake surrounded by the view of Pale di San Martino mountains. There are other trails near by, and do expect a lot of people during the popular summer months.

Day 3 – 8: The Dolomites

There are so much to do in the Dolomites and most involve hiking and visiting alpine lakes. Some of the best places to see in the Dolomites are listed below:

Lago di Braies (Pragser Wildsee)

Lago di Braies is probably the most famous and popular lake in the Dolomites. Its fame on Instagram draws tourists all over the world, which means the lake is super crowded in the summer.

Pragser Wildsee/ Lago di Braies in the morning

You should try to get to Lago di Braies as early as possible because starting around 10am the parking lots (4 of them) start to fill up and tour buses start arriving at the lake.

If the parking lot is getting filled up you won’t even be able to access it, which reminds me of how crazy it is at Moraine Lake in Banff. The best time to visit Lago di Braies is either early morning (as early as possible, at like 7am) or late afternoon when everyone has left.

There is a lake house and canoe rental which opens around 10am. Many instagrammers actually email people at the Lake House ahead of time so they can have access to the Lake House at Lago di Braies before it opens for those instagram-worthy shots.

Although most people just go to the jetty to take photos and leave, you can actually walk around Lago di Braies in a loop which takes about an hour non-stop. You will find less people at the other end of the lake.

Check out my guide on everything you can do at Lago di Braies.

Lago Di Sorapis

Lago di Sorapis is a milky blue alpine lake in the Dolomites that requires a moderate to difficult hike to get to.

The hike to Lago Di Sorapis is about 12km round trip and takes between 4-6 hours depending on your level of fitness and how many people are on the trail (it gets busy in the summer).

While the baby blue lake is beautiful, the hike to Lago di Sorapis is not an easy hike according to most blogs. There is one section with a sheer drop with no protective railings and some cables for you to hold onto on the other side. It’s not a hike for those who are not fit, those with families and young children and those who have vertigo.

Viel del Pan Marmolada Trail (Bindelweg Trail)

Near the town of Canazei in South Tyrol is a stunning hike called Viel del Pan Trail. Different sources say different length of the hike but it’s generally between 7km-9km round trip with about 200m of descend that takes 3 hours round trip.

You need to take 2 cable cars to get to the trail head, near Col dei Rossi-Bellavista and you will have amazing views of Mount Marmolada and Sella. You will continue the hike until you read Lago di Fedaia (with a steep descend) and need to hop on a bus back to Canazei. Another way to do it is to hike to Porta Vescovo to take the cable car down to Arabba and take a bus back to Canazei.

Tre Cime di Lavaredo (Drei Zinnen)

The Tre Cime di Lavaredo is one of the most famous and iconic hikes in the Dolomites. It’s not too far from Cortina (45 min drive) and the trail is 10km that takes about 3-4 hours.

Tre Cime di Lavaredo Hike in the Dolomites is one of the best hikes in Italy

This hike is generally flat and people with families can do this. However since this is the most famous hike in the Dolomites you should expect a lot of people during summer peak season.

Near Tre Cime there is an amazing view point that you probably see on Instagram.

Check out my blog on how to get to this amazing view point at Tre Cime.

Adolf Munkel Trail

Once you are done with the Cortina area, it’s time to move to another area in South Tyrol. Two popular areas in South Tyrol are Val Gardena and Val di Fune.

The Adolf Munkel Trail is an easy 9km trail in Val di Fune that takes about 3 hours. It’s labeled as one of the most stunning trails in the Dolomites as you walk at the foot of Odle/Geisler mountains.

St. Magdalena Village

St. Magdalena Village is a very small but instagrammable village in Val di Fune in the Dolomites. If you are hiking the Adolf Munkel Trail then you can visit St. Magdalena Village and its famous church right after.

Santa Maddalena View Point in the Dolomites in Italy

You cannot drive to the view point of the church so you will have to walk uphill from St. Magdalena Village.

Read my detailed guide on how to reach this iconic view point of St. Magdalena Village.

St. Johann Church (Chiesetta di San Giovanni | Kirche St. Johann)

Besides the church in St. Magdalena Village in the Dolomites, another extremely pretty church is the St. Johann Church in Ranui.

San Giovanni Church Dolomites is one of the best photo spots in the Dolomites in Italy

Many photographers come here for that perfect shot of the church against the mountains in the background. The church is southeast of the St. Magdalena Village and from Google Maps it’s about a 10 minute walk.

Seceda

Seceda is one of the most unique looking mountains in the Dolomites with its sharp slanted slope. You can easily reach Seceda from Ortisei (St. Ulrich) in Val Gardena via Cable Car.

Seceda Dolomites is one of the most interesting looking landscape mountain tops in the Dolomites and should be added to any Dolomites itinerary

You don’t even need to hike much if you don’t want to, but for those who are more adventurous, there are a number of trails from the Seceda Cable car that take you to various places around Seceda.

Lago di Carezza (Karersee)

Karersee Lake during sunset in the Dolomites Italy

Lago di Carezza is another beautiful emerald green lake in South Tyrol. Known as the Fairy tale Lake, Lago di Carezza is situated at the foot of Mt. Latemar. It’s a quick stop but you can also walk around the lake.

Vajolet Towers Day Hike

Not too far from Lago di Carezza is a cool hike to the Vajolet Towers in Rosengarten-Schlern. The hike is 8km (6-7 hour) round trip which starts with a cable car ride. For more information on this hike, check out this blog.

Day 9: Lake Como or Lake Garda

After you are done with the Dolomites, you can either visit Lake Como or Lake Garda before going to Milan to fly out.

Lake Garda is on the way to Milan from the Dolomites and only takes 2.5 hours to drive whereas Lake Como would take over 4 hours to reach by car.

Lake Como, Italy
Lake Como

Both Lake Como and Lake Garda are beautiful lakes so it’s really up to you which one you want to visit. Lake Garda is the largest lake in Italy. Lake Como on the other hands, have many different towns that you can visit via ferry. Both lakes are beautiful and have a lot to do but if you are tight on time then consider Lake Garda.

Day 10: Milan

Milan is one of the most fashionable cities in Italy so if you are interested in shopping then you definitely need to go to Milan.

The most famous thing to see in Milan is the Duomo, which is free to look at. Other things to do in Milan include seeing The Last Supper (painting), checking out the Navigli District, watching a performance at Teatro alla Scala, visiting Sforzesco Castle, and shopping at the “Golden Triangle”.


Bonus Italy 10 Day Itinerary: Puglia

Puglia is the newest and hottest spot to visit in Italy. I personally had never heard of it a few years ago, but it suddenly started popping up on social media.

Located in souther part of Italy (the heel of the “boots” that Italy is shaped of), Puglia region is famous for its coastlines, limestone caves, olive oil and quaint towns. It is a region in Italy that people go for relaxation or a low-key romantic vacation.

It is not as busy or famous like the Amalfi Coast, but it offers similar views, amazing food, beautiful beaches (like actually with sand) and a lower price tag.

With 10 days in Puglia, you can explore Bari, the capital of Puglia, see the unique Trulli houses of Alberobello, a UNESCO World Heritage site, see Locorotondo and Ostuni, towns that are famous for their white buildings.

You can spend some time at coastal towns of Otranto and Gallipoli and of course visit Polignano a Mare, known for its cliffs and crystal-clear water and its famous cave restaurant. Or you can venture out to Matera, an unique cave city built on a hill. It is one of the oldest inhabited settlements in Italy.


How to get around Italy

You can get around Italy easily utilizing trains, renting a car, taking a flight and ride ferries. How exactly to get around Italy really depends on where you are going.

Italy has an amazing network of rail system, and you can literally take trains all around the country, like from Rome to Florence to Venice to Milan as an example. I always use either Rail Europe or Trenitalia to book my train tickets in Italy.

If you are planning to visit the Dolomites, you should definitely rent a car. Discover Car is a good place to find cheap rental cars (and even automatic transmissions). You can use Google Maps to navigate for directions. Just be sure to not speed since they actually give out tickets (I got two tickets from Milan unfortunately).

If you are planning to go to Sicily, it may be faster to fly. You can use budget airlines or find cheap flights on Kayak or Google Flights to find flights to Sicily. Within Sicily you will most likely be taking the bus from town to town.

Is Italy expensive to visit?

Italy can be done very cheaply or it can be very expensive and it totally depends on your budget and travel style. Personally, coming from New York City, I don’t think Italy is that expensive but I also don’t stay in luxury hotels. But if you are visiting from a lower cost city, Italy may seem more expensive.

There are many factors that affect how much you money you will spend in Italy during your 10 day holiday. These include hotel cost, food, attractions and transportation. If you are planning to shop, that is a different story.

Typically, you can expect to spend $115 – $300 a day (per person) during your 10 days in Italy:

  • Hotel: $60 – $200 a night per person
  • Meals: $20- $50 a day per person
  • Attractions: $30 – $60 a day per person (unless you are hiking)
  • Transportation: $5 – 20 a day per person

To be honest the range I gave you really varies greatly from person to person and it depends on so many other factors:

  • Which cities are you visiting in Italy
  • What type of hotels are you staying in Italy
  • What type of restaurant you go to (clearly Michelin Star would cost a lot more)
  • Are you hiking or going to museums? (hiking is typically free)
  • What is the exchange like between Euros and your currency

Other things to know before you visit Italy

Do you tip in Italy?

Generally you don’t need to tip in Italy. You can, however, leave a small amount for waiters/waitress after a meal if you really like their service. Unlike the US, you are not expected to tip 15-20% in Italy.

Do I need a visa to go to Italy?

Italy is part of the European Union, so you will need a Schengen Visa to visit Italy. However, citizens from many countries can visit Italy visa free, such as Australians, Americans, Canadians, Singaporean, etc. For a full list of “who needs schengen visa”, visit this website.

Do I need to know Italian to visit Italy?

It is always helpful to learn some basic Italian when you visit Italy. However you can get around Italy without speaking Italian (I certainly do not speak Italian!).

I would say that in cities like Rome, Florence, Venice, since there are so many international tourist, you can definitely get by with just English (or Spanish actually!). But if you go to Sicily, especially smaller towns in Sicily, it may be helpful to know a little Italian.

Is Italy Safe?

Italy is a safe country to visit, even for female solo travelers. The only concern is potential pickpockets in Italy.

You should watch your bags at all times especially in crowded touristy areas. Do not wear a backpack or put your phone or wallet in your pants pocket.

I highly suggest you get an anti-theft crossbody bag or a fanny pack to avoid getting pickpocketed.

Final Thoughts On These 4 Incredible 10 Day Italy Itineraries

Italy is an amazing country to visit with so much to do, see, drink and eat. These 4 different sample 10 day Italy itineraries will help you plan how to best spend 10 days in Italy and you can always come back to try another itinerary.

Even outside of the 4 Italy itineraries I suggested, you can come back to Italy 10 times and still not run out of things to do.

Other Italy Travel Resources

If you are traveling to Italy I have some other blogs that might interest you!

How to spend one day in Florence
3 Days in the Dolomites
Best things to see on the Amalfi Coast
Best things to do in Marsala, Sicily
Best things to do in Trapani, Sicily
Other Dolomites articles

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10 Days in Italy
4 alternative 10 day Italy itinerary
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4 alternative 10 day Italy itinerary
Four amazing 10 day Italy itineraries
How to spend 10 days in Italy - 4 differnet itineraries
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10 Days in Italy: 4 Alternative 10 Day Italy Itineraries
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These 4 unique Italy itineraries include best places to go in 10 days in Italy whether it's your first, second, or third time in Italy or if you are a hiker or visiting Italy for honeymoon.