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Wondering what to include in a 3-week Italy itinerary for a first-time traveler in May?


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I am going to Italy in May for 3 weeks, and need suggestions for my itinerary. I've never been and am looking for suggestions as to "must not miss" things to see and do. Thanks for any help you can offer!

Humans say...

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Cinque Terre!

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Marlene Jadraque Bantok
Southern Italy
See Pompeii,
Go up to Ravello
Definitely Florence and take a day trip with wine tasting in Tuscany , sienna and Dan giminiano
Rome is amazing too.

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Marlene Jadraque Bantok yes, yes, yes, yes, yes!!!

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Cinque terre, Tuscany, Almalfi Coast...

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Sorrento is lovely

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Veronica Assisi was such a surprise. So beautiful!

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Rome will be busy, but it is a living art gallery and you need to see it. I would never recommend Venice to anyone unless you like crowds. I'm also a fan of the Lake Garda area--a large lake set in the mountains.

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Hi ,
We went in early May.
My itinerary was 3 nights Rome, train to Sorrento for 3 nights, rented a car and drove to Grieve Chianti in Tuscany. Kept the car for our 3 nights stay so we could visit the other hillside towns of sienna, Voltera and San Gimignano. Drove to Florence , got rid of car ASAP. 3 nights in Florence then train to Venice for 2 nights before our return flight home. We had an Open jaw ticket allowed us to not have to back track.

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Sharon San Gimignano was magic!

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Hi Sharon! I realize this is an old post but I found it really useful. Wondering what company did you use to rent the car and how the road conditions are in general. In your experience, would it be OK to drive late afternoon/early night (assuming it'd be dark at 9 pmish???)

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Just don’t try to do too much. You’re better off picking 3 key things to see/do and adding day trips rather than racing around.
Take time to sit on any piazza and enjoy the food coffee grapa and people watching

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Nancy that’s a great suggestion and it can be to much if you’re try to pack in to many places

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Join the Italy Travel Planning group so much information an help also

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If you are in Florence, must eat pasta at Yellow Bar. All hand made, great service, and they make their own Limoncello and it's delish!

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I second Yellow Bar!! It was my favourite restaurant!!

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You will get a lot of different answers as to where to go and what to see. My main suggestions are to fly into one city and out from another to minimize travel days or do a loop, don’t try to squeeze too much in, savour and enjoy the Italian way of life! Oh, and don’t book anything on the main floor in Venice!

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Get Rick Steve’s guidebook on Italy. I highly recommend!

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Cinque Terre

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Florence David is a must see

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Puglia hidden gem !!

A.I. says...

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Italy Itinerary for 3 Weeks

With three weeks to explore Italy, you have plenty of time to experience the country's rich history, culture, and cuisine. Here is a suggested itinerary that will allow you to see some of the most popular destinations, as well as some hidden gems.

Week 1

  • Day 1: Arrive in Rome and check into your hotel. Take a walk around the city center and see some of the famous sights, such as the Colosseum, the Trevi Fountain, and the Pantheon.
  • Day 2: Visit the Vatican City, home to St. Peter's Basilica and the Vatican Museums. Take a cooking class and learn how to make some traditional Italian dishes.
  • Day 3: Take a day trip to Pompeii, the ancient Roman city that was destroyed by a volcanic eruption in 79 AD. Visit the ruins of the city and learn about the lives of the people who lived there.
  • Day 4: Take a train to Florence, the birthplace of the Renaissance. Check into your hotel and take a walk around the city center.
  • Day 5: Visit the Uffizi Gallery, one of the most famous art museums in the world. Take a stroll across the Ponte Vecchio, the only bridge in Florence that was spared destruction during World War II.
  • Day 6: Take a day trip to Pisa to see the Leaning Tower of Pisa. Visit the Piazza del Duomo, where the tower is located, and take a walk around the city.
  • Day 7: Take a train to Venice, the city of canals. Check into your hotel and take a gondola ride through the city's canals.

Week 2

  • Day 8: Visit St. Mark's Square, the heart of Venice. Visit the Doge's Palace, the former home of the Doge of Venice, and take a tour of St. Mark's Basilica.
  • Day 9: Take a day trip to the island of Murano, famous for its glassblowing. Visit a glassblowing factory and watch the artisans at work.
  • Day 10: Take a train to Milan, the fashion capital of Italy. Check into your hotel and take a walk around the city center.
  • Day 11: Visit the Duomo di Milano, one of the largest and most impressive cathedrals in the world. Take a stroll through the Galleria Vittorio Emanuele II, one of the world's oldest shopping malls.
  • Day 12: Take a day trip to Lake Como, one of the most beautiful lakes in Italy. Visit the town of Bellagio and take a boat ride on the lake.
  • Day 13: Take a train to Cinque Terre, a string of five villages perched on the cliffs of the Ligurian Sea. Hike between the villages and enjoy the stunning scenery.
  • Day 14: Take a train to Genoa, the birthplace of Christopher Columbus. Visit the Palazzo Ducale, the former home of the Doge of Genoa, and take a walk around the city's historic center.

Week 3

  • Day 15: Take a train to Turin, the first capital of Italy. Visit the Mole Antonelliana, the city's most famous landmark, and take a walk around the city center.
  • Day 16: Visit the Egyptian Museum, one of the most important museums of Egyptian art in the world. Take a stroll through the Parco del Valentino, one of the largest and most beautiful parks in Turin.
  • Day 17: Take a day trip to the Sacra di San Michele, a medieval abbey perched on a mountaintop. Visit the abbey and enjoy the stunning views of the surrounding countryside.
  • Day 18: Take a train to Verona, the city of Romeo and Juliet. Visit the Casa di Giulietta, the supposed home of Juliet, and take a walk around the city center.
  • Day 19: Visit the Arena di Verona, one of the largest and best-preserved Roman amphitheaters in the world. Take a stroll through the Giardino Giusti, one of the most beautiful gardens in Verona.
  • Day 20: Take a day trip to Lake Garda, the largest lake in Italy. Visit the town of Sirmione and take a boat ride on the lake.
  • Day 21: Depart from Verona.

This is just a suggested itinerary, and you can customize it to fit your interests and budget. With so much to see and do in Italy, you're sure to have an amazing time.

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