A trip to Italy certainly isn’t a “budget” vacation for most families. But, whether you’re visiting Italy with or without kids, it’s an adventure.
Tourists are descending on Italy in masses. In 2017, 420 million people visited the country.
It’s critical to plan your trip to manage the crowds for the perfect vacation. But how can you know what sites to prioritize?
We’re here to help! You probably can’t fit everything about Italy into your weeklong or two-weeklong vacation. So, here are the seven most exciting things to see in Italy.
1. The Colosseum
Your list of things to do on Italy vacations isn’t complete without a trip to the Colosseum. Whether you start here or end here, plan time for it.
Ancient Romans built the enormous structure during the Roman Empire in what is now modern-day Rome. The Colosseum has always been a model for sports facilities throughout the centuries.
You’ll see why it remains so impressive when you stare up at its grand height. The arena held up to 50,000 people and hosted many bloody gladiator matches in its prime.
The ancient building stands out among the modern buildings of today’s city of Rome. You can’t (and shouldn’t) miss it.
When in Rome, don’t miss some of the city’s hidden gems. Learn more about some smaller but must-see things about the city of Rome.
2. The City of Pompeii
You’re probably familiar with the story of Pompeii. It was an ancient city of people buried under volcanic ash when Mt. Vesuvius erupted in AD 79.
While the volcano’s eruption killed the population of the city, the ash also preserved many of the city’s ancient artifacts.
Today you can visit Mt. Vesuvius and Pompeii to see the preserved mosaics, frescoes, and sculptures that archeologists uncovered from underneath the lava after it cooled.
You’ll also tour recovered streets, markets, houses, baths, temples, and theaters. It’s an eery city filled with beauty, Roman architecture, and history.
3. The Vatican
Whether you are Catholic or not, the Vatican is something you need to see while in Italy.
While you’re in Rome, take a day to make the boat trip to Vatican City. It is worth it to visit Piazza San Pietro and St Peter’s Basilica.
Vatican Palace and its grounds are impressive on their own. Tour the Vatican Museum and the Vatican Library.
You’ll also want to take your time admiring the beauty of Michelangelo’s work inside the Sistine Chapel.
4. The Leaning Tower of Pisa
This famous tower isn’t hard to find during your visit to the town of Pisa. The town also offers so much more than just a fun picture of you or your friends pretending to support the tower as it leans.
Despite the great wonders of medieval Roman architecture, this tower in Pisa starting during construction.
The soft ground beneath it let the tower in its position of leaning. When officials periodically decide the tower isn’t safe, they close it to visitors.
If you visit while it’s open, be sure you climb the stairs to the top of the tower. You’ll appreciate the view over the city of Pisa.
Back on solid ground, spend time in the Square of Miracles and the Field of Miracles near the tower.
5. The Amalfi Coast
Extend your trip to the south of Italy for this breathtaking place. The Amalfi Coast lines the coast south of Naples and Sorrento.
The small towns along the coast sit nestled into the rock and mountainsides. You can drive from town to town on a hillside road. Or, you can enjoy the sea and hop between towns by boat.
Explore the picture-perfect towns by walking the stone streets. Enjoy gardens, beaches, and a slower pace than the bigger cities of Italy.
6. The Canals of Venice
Leave the roads behind and explore the canals of Venice by gondola. Walk the streets and bridges to experience everything about the city.
Eat your way through the famous city by enjoying the many wonderful restaurants throughout the canals.
If you enjoy culture, Venice is your perfect destination. Don’t leave the city without visiting the opera or an art gallery.
Venice is also the perfect place for designer Italian shopping. Visit the Piazza San Marco for your high-end shopping experience. You’ll find a variety of labels from top designers and brands.
7. The Villas of Tuscany
If you’re a fan of the movie Under the Tuscan Sun, Tuscany must be part of your Italy vacation.
In stark contrast to the canals of Venice, the Tuscan countryside is perfect for long walks or bike rides through the small villages.
You’ll find plenty of spas to choose from to enhance your stay. You’ll also find no shortage of excellent wineries through the region.
Live like an Italian for part of your stay in a cozy villa tucked into the Tuscan countryside. While in the area, spend some time in Florence. You’ll enjoy beautiful churches, grand architecture, and plenty of ancient art.
Say Ciao to the Many Things to See in Italy
Whether Italy is only one part of your Europe trip or it’s your sole destination for an extended vacation, there are so many beautiful and historical things to see in Italy.
This list is only a handful of the best place places to visit in Italy. We know you’ll find more to love about the country while you visit these places and explore others.
If a vacation to Italy seems out of reach for your budget right now, make a plan to get there one day. Research your perfect adventure from the top of Italy to the bottom. Make a budget and save your pennies for a once-in-a-lifetime adventure.
Whether you take the kids or not, it’s never too early to get the kids involved with learning the value of money to pay for fun adventures. Read more about how to launch a 52-week money challenge with your kids.