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View of colourful buildings lining a canal - Venice, Italy

Italy

Italy is culturally rich with its wealth of Renaissance architecture, Roman history and priceless art. Scenically, you’ll enjoy stark Alpine peaks in the north, the Apennine Mountains, olive groves and vineyards of Italy’s heart, and the warm waters, volcanic islands and Mediterranean lifestyle of the south.

Florence is known as the ‘Cradle of the Renaissance’, with its palaces and squares, magnificent cathedral and superb art collections in the Accademia and Uffizi galleries. In Rome you can trace the course of history through 2500 years from the grandeur of the Forum and Colosseum, to the grandiose Altar of the Nation. Venice is simply unique - a maze of narrow streets, canals and unexpected city squares, with unforgettable masterpieces in the Accademia and Scoula Grande di San Rocco.

Italy rivals France as a centre for fashion and design with names like Prada, Fendi, Armani, Versace and Dolce & Gabbana. Florence is the place for gold jewellery and beautiful leather goods. When in Rome, look for silk blouses, scarves and ties, fine knitwear and costume jewellery. In Venice, you’ll find Murano glass and porcelain carnival masks, while local embroidery can be very tempting.

In Venice you’ll be served rice rather than pasta and a delicious range of fish dishes. Wines from the Veneto are among Italy’s finest. In Rome, sample the endless permutations of pastas and sauces. Frascati is wine from Rome’s Alban hills or try the smooth Italian brandy - Vecchia Romagna. Florence is in Chianti country and the cooking is based on simple natural ingredients, Try fritto misto - deep fried meats and vegetables. And if a bistecca Fiorentino (T-bone steak with lemon) is too big for one - share it like the locals do! View more trips to Italy.


Featured Tours

  • Fall head over heels for Puglia - an unspoilt, food lover's paradise. See the curious trulli and sparkling white towns, the unique beauty of the Bay of Naples, and the sun-drenched Isle of Capri.

  • Welcome to the ultimate in guided vacations, river cruising and first class rail. From the water-lapped piazzas of Venice, embark on a romantic journey of discovery that unveils the unmissable landmarks of Italy along with some of her revealing treasures.

  • This magical tour devotes quality time to the medieval hill towns and evocative landscapes of Italy's two famous regions. Drink the wine, meet the local people around plate-laden tables and hear their fascinating life stories.

Italians like nothing more than a traditional evening stroll (passeggiata). It’s great fun to watch but even more fun to join in. Venice is magical at night when all the day trippers have gone home. Relax under the stars at Piazza San Marco while string ensembles play some of Italy’s best loved music. Want more adventure? Climb a volcano! It’s something you can’t do every day and Italy is littered with them.

Tour Director recommendation

Food for thought

I love to introduce our guests to the local characters, experts and artisans. In my 20-plus years with Insight, guests have repeatedly commented that they don't get those kinds of authentic experiences on other guided vacations
Tour Director - Gigi Smith

Gigi Smith-Bromage

Tour Director, Western Europe

Factfile

Know before you go
  • Spring

    Mar-May

    Cloudy

    Av temp: 19˚C66˚F

  • Summer

    Jun-Aug

    Sun

    Av temp: 27˚C80˚F

  • Autumn

    Sept-Nov

    Rain

    Av temp: 21˚C70˚F

  • Winter

    Dec-Feb

    Snow

    Av temp: 12˚C54˚F

  • Time difference

    London GMT + 1hr

  • Currency

    Euro (EUR, €)

When to go: April-October for the warmest and driest climates; November-December for a fantastic festive atmosphere.

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