Why Italy is your next destination for unique travel

Colleseum, Italy

Alice Piper

Posted March 03, 2022


Ancient ruins in Rome, sapphire waters surrounding the Amalfi Coast and world-famous artwork in Florence - here’s why Italy has it all when it comes to unique travel experiences.

Looking for the ultimate travel destination that satisfies your desire for both exploration and relaxation?

Pack your bags because Italy is the perfect destination to tour and rekindle your love affair with international travel, with its fresh pasta, robust wines, sense of style, sunsets over rolling vineyard hills, incredible architecture, pristine beaches and welcoming faces wherever you go.

Whether you’re after a small and intimate travel experience visiting the quant villages in Tuscany, or keen to experience the bustling ancient metropolis of Rome, Italy is the type of destination you visit time and time again, seeing different parts of the country each time.

“There is something magical about Italy, with so much diversity in terms of landscape, history, food, art and culture, all within the one place,” says Designer Journeys CEO, Matt McCann.

“We speak to people all the time who still fondly remember every detail about their unique Italian holiday years and years ago, which shows what a memorable and breathtaking country it really is,” he adds.

Whether you choose to visit Southern Italy with its beautiful coastline, outstanding seafood and rich family traditions, or Northern and Central Italy with its rolling vineyards, ancient ruins and vibrant art and fashion scenes, there are many reasons why Italy should be the top of your travel list. 


Why Italy should be your next holiday destination 

Connect with regional culture

Italy’s rich culture dates back a millennium, with the ancient empire of Rome, the 118 islands that make up Venice and the Bronze Age of Sardinia to name just a few historical wonders.

In fact, because Italy didn’t become one state, or Kingdom of Italy, until early in the 19th century, there are many regional customs (including dialects) that Italians are famously proud of.

Then, there is perhaps the greatest cultural legacy of all, Italy’s architecture, where is feels like every corner you turn houses another remarkable design. Take the Sistine Chapel and St Peter’s Cathedral in the Vatican City, or the canals of Venice where people walk across on perfectly-arched bridges – Italy has so many postcard-worthy sites to see.

“Italy is far more than the reviews you read and the pictures you see,” says McCann. “There is so much history and culture behind every city, with locals just oozing passion and love for their country. Every  ‘piazza’ and ‘strada’ has a story to tell.”

Periods of history collide

When you think about the size of Italy, geographically it covers about the same area space as Victoria, however, the cultural diversity within such a small country is truly amazing.

On one hand, you have the ancient history of Rome, with its 280 fountains, Spanish Steps, more than 900 churches (St Peter’s Basilica inside the Vatican City being the largest in the country), the Colosseum, the Roman Forum, and a sprawling metropolis of classic architecture, incredible food, world-famous film industry and breathtaking art.

On the other hand, five hours north of Rome is Venice, the ‘city of canals’, with its gondola rides, atmospheric streets, and lagoons making it one of the most unique cities in the world. Venice is also the home of glassmaking and has been since the 8th century. On Murano Island, you’ll be transfixed at the bright colours and elaborate designs as the tradition of glass blowing is kept well and truly alive.

A short three-hour drive inland from Rome is the Renaissance city of Florence, home to some of the most famous art galleries in the world, like the Uffizi Gallery and the Palazzo Pitti, with works by historical artists such as Michelangelo, Leonardo da Vinci, Raphael, Sandro Botticelli, Giotto and Titian. 

 

The rolling hills of Tuscany are iconic.
The bustling metropolis of Rome.

The food is more than just ‘food’

Much more than just pizza and pasta, Italy is full of delicious cuisine that changes depending on where you go.

Each region in Italy has its own specialities, with obvious differences in ingredients, taste and texture. For example, the north of Italy is famous for risotto and pesto, while the south is the birthplace of arguably the world’s most famous food, pizza.

Don’t forget to try the local wines, such as the red varieties Nebbiolo, Barbera, Dolcetto, Amarone and Valpolicella which are all native to Northern Italy; and Aglianico, Primitivo, Negroamaro and Nero D'Avola in the Southern cities.

Even the process of making world-famous olive oil and limoncello is a form of art in Italy and something you must see for yourself.

Wherever you go, one thing remains universal when it comes to Italian cuisine – there is espresso and gelato everywhere (so leave plenty of room).

 

The stunning sapphire waters of the Amalfi Coast.
The renaissance city of Florence is home to world-famous artwork.

There really is something for everyone

From the high fashion scene of Milan to the vibrant street culture of Palermo, Italy delivers a perfect piece of itself for every traveller.

Let’s not forget the varied landscape of the country including pristine beaches, soaring mountains and crystal-clear lakes, bustling piazzas and diverse architecture you won’t find anywhere else in the world. Lake Como, the island of Capri, the volatile Mt Etna and the Italian Alps are just some of the breathtaking natural experiences in Italy.

“That’s the best part about a country like Italy,” says McCann. “One day, you can sip some of the world's best wines in San Gimignano, a medieval hill town, another day you can walk the manicured gardens of the Vatican City, and another, you can eat fresh seafood and enjoy a seaside breeze on a boat tour around the rugged Amalfi Coast.”

The warmth of the locals

There is something so special about the warmness of Italians, and their delight in treating everyone like family – even when you may have only known them for five minutes.

When it comes to hidden gems in Italy, nobody knows them quite like the locals.

From restaurant and café owners to locals just looking for a chat, it’s hard not to feel like the people in Italy are some of the most hospitable and helpful in the world.

“This is why we’re so passionate about working directly with locals on the ground in Italy, so that we can deliver the best and most curated Italian experience possible,” says McCann. “We want people to experience Italy in the most authentic way possible, and it doesn’t get much better than hospitality and insights from Italian natives.”

With Designer Journeys, building unique Italian travel itineraries filled with hard-to-find experiences is simple, safe and secure. Powered by Italian local insight every little detail is taken care of and can be expertly customised to meet your travel requirements. 

 

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