Italy truly has it all, from jaw dropping lakes and imposing mountains to winding streets and authentic eateries. Be it dreamlike countryside and indulgent wine tours or simply coastal relaxation, there’s something for everyone. But why settle for just one Italian destination when you can have it all with an Italian multi-centre holiday. With a superb railway system and one-way car hire it’s easy to travel Italy, be it a two-centre or four, the perfect luxury holiday awaits.
With so many destinations to choose from, it can be hard to narrow it down. First figure out what you are looking for in your multi-centre holiday then check its feasibility. However possible it may be to travel from the depths of the Dolomites to the beaches of Sardinia it will require a few stops along the way, and we can help.
This Classic trip includes the historical capital Rome and the stunning Amalfi Coastline of Italy. Start your trip in the ‘eternal city’ and take in the famous sites before heading south. We recommend two or three days in Rome for the perfect time to explore its many treats and get your fix of world famous coffee. See our blog Rome in 3 days for a suggested itinerary.
Hop on the scenic high-speed rail to Naples and take a transfer to wonderful Sorrento. Adopt the laid-back vibe of Italy’s south and simply shop, eat and relax. Dine in the town’s many terraced restaurants whilst the glistening backdrop of the bay of Naples feeds the eyes. If time permits, add value to your stay with an excursion to the devastating ruins of Pompeii and the dramatic Mount Vesuvius.
Another favoured multi-centre holiday pairs the renaissance city of Florence with the star struck Italian Riviera, Liguria. This beautiful coastline includes some pretty fishing villages and some of Italy’s most fashionable resorts, including the star-studded Portofino. Beautiful beaches and picturesque villages greet the traveller with tempting charm, colourful houses and superb gastronomy including indigenous basil, pine nuts and olive oil which combine to make superb pesto. If time permits visit the UNESCO World Heritage Site Cinque Terre or stop off in the city of Pisa.
This Ligurian coastline stretches from the French border to Tuscany so it’s easy to head inland to Pisa, Florence and Siena. Known as the birthplace of Renaissance, a city break to Florence can take in a plethora of artistic delights including the awe-inspiring cathedral that cannot be missed. From cobbled streets and 16th century Piazza’s to world-class museums and boutique shopping Florence is set to charm.
Verona is a city of unmissable romance and dramatic theatre. As the home of Romeo & Juliet, Verona is often nicknamed ‘Shakespeare’s City’. As well as a magnitude of charm, don’t miss some truly stunning opera performances and the city’s wondrous architecture. Read our post for the top things to do in Verona.
Just north of Verona, the mirror topped waters of Lake Garda are complemented by romantic lakeside towns and a backdrop of snow peaked mountains. Jump in for a refreshing swim or enjoy adventurous water sports and stunning walks with superb views. The lakes are perfect for family holidays, adult only breaks or lakeside spa retreats.
Transfer time: Lake Garda is approximately 1 hour 20 minutes from Verona by car and 2 hours 15 minutes from Venice.
For a similar Itinerary with a twist swap Verona for Venice or change the lake to Maggiore or Como paired with the fashionable city of Milan. Read our blog to see the which Italian Lake you should visit.
Tuscany, San Gimignano
In Italy’s countryside the eyes are met with stark green rolling hills, verdant groves & delightful Italian clichés. Start your journey in the art loving city of Florence filled with museums, galleries, nightlife and Italian cuisine. Spend 2 nights in this beautiful city and explore the world’s largest Franciscan church which is the burial place of Michelangelo, Rossini, Galileo and many others. Climb the Brunelleschi’s magnificent dome for the famous cityscape photo opportunity.
Just take yourself 5 minutes out of Florence and the impossibly green Tuscany countryside will welcome you gladly. The endless rolling hills are patterned with vineyards and fields of sunflowers broken up by tall growths of Cypress. Explore the little towns of Tuscany and embrace the delightful Mediterranean clichés of little bikes and little Italian eateries. Indulge in wine tasting excursions or simply drive through this dream-like countryside. For an extra trip, spend a day in Pisa and visit the famous leaning tower which is within a 1 hour train journey from Florence.
Tuscany Coast: To add the seaside to you countryside adventure, make your way to the Tuscany coast for a breath of sea air and relaxation. Spend languid days beachside or tour the many seafront promenades with delightful foodie retreats.
Transfer time: Transfer time varies between 20 minutes to 2 hours depending on where in Tuscany you decide to stay. Due to its central location Florence provides easy access to many other locations in Italy. Venice is 2 hours by rail, and Rome can be reached in 90 minutes by high speed rail, opening the doors to Sorrento, Sicily and beyond.
You don’t need to stop at just two centres you can get the true essence of Italy with a driving tour or a multi-centre holiday. For the perfect taste of Italy’s finest, fly to Venice for a romantic weekend meandering the canals before jumping on the high-speed rail to Florence. Just 90 minutes by rail, jump head first in to the capital city of Rome and experience its many delights and sights.
After this active itinerary head south to the coast of Amalfi and spend the remaining days relaxing in peaceful pools, shopping in quiet towns and enjoying the beautiful backdrop of the bay of Naples.
The variety of itineraries within Italy are many, but multi-centre holidays don’t stop there. With frequent ferry services and reliable rail, Croatia, Slovenia and Switzerland are all in reach.
Venice – Croatia: The Croatian town of Pula can be reached within just 3 hours from Venice. Add a 2 hour car transfer and you’ll reach Portoroz in Slovenia. Or, you can book onto our Best of Croatia and Slovenia escorted coach tour, which starts in Venice.
For more lakes and mountains, hop over to Switzerland or Austria, which are both accessible from many of Italy’s northern towns, such as the 3 hour journey by rail between Lucerne and Milan.
Exploring Italy by train is efficient and easy. The very comfortable rail service has easy check-in, few queues and offers speedy hassle-free travel. Linking the biggest cities, travel in style in first class and simply enjoy the stunning scenery go by. For that extra special holiday, you can also travel from London or Paris to Venice by the famous Venice Simplon-Orient-Express and witness some truly stunning landscapes and savour exquisite dining onboard.
For freedom and flexibility you can easily travel Italy by car, however road signs are somewhat lacking so it’s highly recommended to bring a Sat Nav, or hire one along with the car. Enjoy the relaxation of a road trip and take yourself door to door, embrace the Italian cliché in a Fiat 500 and take the country at your own pace.
When to go to Italy
September is by far the most popular month, however with prices matching those of summer holidays and a battle for availability you’ll need to book well in advance. Spring time from April- June tends to be more reasonable in price and the weather warmer the later you go. However, even early October can provide pleasant temperatures and is generally a lot quieter.
There are so many possibilities for your Italy multi-centre holiday, including the wonderful locations in volcanic Sicily or beach paradise Sardinia, Italy really is your oyster. Our expert Italian team have first-hand destination knowledge, an infallible love for the destination and can create an itinerary to fit your requirements perfectly.
Prices featured are a ‘from price’ per person based on 2 adults sharing a room including economy flights and private transfers. Savings are per couple for selected dates against original system pricing; alternative dates and departure airports available. All holiday offers are subject to limited availability and change. Full booking conditions here.