Italy Honeymoon Itinerary. Learn About Venice, Florence, and Rome from the Locals. Discover Beautiful Places and Hidden Gems, and Have the Time of Your Life in the “Bel Paese”!
Italy is one of the most romantic places on earth, and it is the perfect spot to spend some time with your sweetheart. Here are some of the reasons why you should spend you honeymoon in Italy:
- Food – Italy is one of the food capitals in the world. Pasta, pizza, mozzarella, and gelato are all from Italy, not to mention great wines, cheeses, and truffles you can find here.
- Landscapes – From the vineyard landscapes of Tuscany, to the majestic back ground of Colosseum in Rome, what’s more to ask?
- Art – Museums, ancient ruins, sculptures, paintings, fountains and historic squares (piazza), are waiting for you in Italy.
- Shopping – From upscale brands like Gucci and Fendi to unique small boutiques, and artisans stores, shopaholics will find their peace of mind, and so will the casual tourist looking for a unique memento.
For a food and art oriented 14 days itinerary, I propose a tour through Rome, Florence, Pienza, Montalcino, Montepulciano, Siena, and Venice.
When to Go
The best times to visit Italy are from April to June and from September to October. July and August are the hottest months, and December to February is the coldest period to be avoided if possible. August is the worst month to visit Italy, not only does it get uncomfortably hot and humid, but apparently the entire country goes on vacation altogether, too. This means fewer stores and restaurants are open, and visiting museums gets more challenging.
The fast trains Freccia Rossa and Freccia Argento connect all the major cities, including Milan, Rome, Florence, Venice, Naples, Bologna, and Turin. It is also possible to buy the tickets online.
Italy Honeymoon Itinerary – Rome
Rome, also known as the eternal city, is the capital of Italy. Considered one of the most beautiful cities in the world, Rome is a must-see in Italy.
The Colosseum is one of the seven wonders of the world, and is considered the major tourist attraction in Rome. Built between 70 AD and 80 AD, the Colosseum was used to host gladiator fights as well as a variety of other events.
Saint Peter’s Basilica and the Vatican Museums
Saint Peter’s Basilica is a late Renaissance church located in the Vatican City. The Vatican Museums in the Vatican city hosts a collection of classical sculptures and the most important masterpieces of Renaissance art. The Sistine Chapel with its ceiling decorated by Michelangelo and the Stanze della Segnatura decorated by Raphael are some of the highlights of a visit to this magnificent place.
Castel Sant’Angelo was originally built by Emperor Hadrian as a mausoleum (AD130-139). The building was later used by the popes as a fortress and castle. The castle, which is now a museum, exhibits a range of Renaissance paintings and a collection of antique weaponry.
The Pantheon is a nicely preserved building of the ancient Rome era. The temple was commissioned by Marcus Agrippa (27 BC – 14 AD) and rebuilt by emperor Hadrian in 126 AD.
The Pantheon’s Dome has an oculus (hole) in the roof which is the only source of natural light inside the building.
Piazza di Spagna and the Spanish Steps
The famous staircase in Piazza di Spagna, the celebrated landmark square in the center of Rome, has been constructed using 138 steps. The Barcaccia (i.e., ‘sinking boat’) fountain is located at the foot of the steps, supposedly made by Pietro Bernini, father of the more famous Gian Lorenzo Bernini. The area around Piazza di Spagna is an upscale shopping district in downtown Rome.
Trevi Fountain is perhaps the most beautiful fountain in Italy and in Europe. Built between 1732 and 1762, this majestic monument is a masterpiece of baroque art. The fountain’s water is supplied by one of the oldest Roman aqueducts, the “Acqua Vergine”.
Piazza Navona is a stunning example of Baroque art, which hosts three masterpieces of Italian architecture: the Fountain of the Four Rivers, the Fontana del Moro, and the Fountain of Neptune. It is a fun place to hang out at night or on Sunday morning, when local artists and food stalls create a lively atmosphere.
Campo de’ Fiori (literally “field of flowers”) is the hub of the night life in downtown Rome. Come here for a drink, dinner, or gelato. During the day it hosts a fruit and flower market.
Villa Borghese is a large garden located just north of the Spanish Steps. The Pincio is a balcony overlooking Piazza del Popolo, and is a popular place to enjoy views of Rome.
Where to Eat
- Taverna Trilussa serves authentic Roman dishes. This restaurant is located in the Trastevere district, a place with a vibrant night life.
- Da Enzo al 29 is a typical Roman trattoria. The atmosphere is very authentic and casual. The waiting time for a table is around 30 minutes, but it is worth it. The carbonara and the tiramisu are delicious.
- Il Giardino di Albino serves delicious Sardinian food and a great selection of wine in a friendly atmosphere in the heart of Rome.
- Open Colonna is a chic restaurant located on the rooftop of Palazzo delle Esposizioni in Via Nazionale. It serves a buffet-style lunch, and is an upscale dinner spot with inventive food able to delight the most discerning palates.
- La Pergola is an upscale three Michelin star restaurant located on top of the Waldorf Astoria Rome Cavalieri Hotel. This restaurant is pricy, yet the food is memorable and the views of Rome from the restaurant make it worthwhile to dine here.
- Guerrini Bistrot serves great Italian food. The wine selection is outstanding, and the atmosphere is lively and very friendly. The original food makes it a nice spot for dinner.
Italy Honeymoon Itinerary – Florence
Home of masterpieces of art and architecture, Florence is romantic and magnetic. Here are some must-see places that cannot be missed in a honeymoon trip to Italy.
- Trattoria La Casalinga makes traditional Tuscany cuisine. The prices are reasonable, the atmosphere is friendly and the food is outstanding.
- Enoteca Pinchiorri serves delicious Italian food in an elegant ambiance. The wine is one of the strengths of this restaurant, even though it is a on the pricey side.
- Antica Trattoria Da Tito serves traditional Tuscany cuisine. Locals love this restaurant. The ambiance is typical of a rustic trattoria, but the food is worth it.
Italy Honeymoon Itinerary – Tuscany Highlights
Italy Honeymoon Itinerary – Venice
Venice, the hometown of the explorer Marco Polo, is a city built on the water. Wonderful and romantic, this is a place you will never forget. It consists of over 100 small islands connected by bridges and boats. There are no cars or roadways to move around in Venice, boats and walking suffice here. The buildings seem to rise out of the water, the amazing views from the Canal Grande fill your eyes as you navigate the maze-like alleys and small squares of Venice. Words cannot make justice to the unique character and atmosphere of Venice and the beauty of its Gothic and Byzantine architecture. Do yourself a favor and spend at least one night here during your Italy honeymoon itinerary.
What to See
St Mark’s Basilica (Basilica di San Marco) is the main church cathedral in Venice. It is famous for its opulent Italo-Byzantine architecture and the mosaics showing the life of St Marco. I recommend to buy the ticket online to skip the line.
Doge’s Palace is built in Venetian Gothic style. The Palace, which is now a museum, was the former residence of the Doge of Venice.
Galleria dell’Accademia is a museum hosting several masterpieces of Venetian artists, as well as the masterpiece Vitruvian Man of Leonardo da Vinci.
Basilica di Santa Maria della Salute is a Roman Catholic church located between the Grand Canal and the Giudecca Canal. It features a majestic architecture and Baroque and Byzantine style sculptures.
Gondola ride will make your stay in Venice even more romantic. The average price for a daytime ride is about 80 EUR for 40 minutes, and 100 EUR for an evening ride of 40 minutes. Some gondolieri can ask much more for a single ride. It is a good idea to ask and negotiate the price before jumping on the boat to avoid unpleasant surprises.
Where to Eat
Venice offers many options to foodies. If you don’t want to spend an arm and a leg for a lunch or dinner, the “bacari” are a great option for a quick meal. The bacari are a type of Venetian osteria serving small plates and wine by glass usually at the counter. Try a cicchetto (quick snack) with a glass of white wine / prosecco or a spritz. Here is a useful website with a list of the best bacari in Venice.
- Antiche Carampane is a great restaurant, especially for seafood lovers. It is a popular choice among locals and Italians, and a great alternative to the overpriced touristic restaurants.
- La Zucca serves delicious Venetian dishes with a view of the canal. It is a great place for vegetarians, too.
- Al Merca’ is a typical Venetian bacaro that serves delicious panini, quick bites and white wines of the Veneto region by the glass.
Italy Honeymoon Itinerary – Where to Stay
Staying in the city center or in the nearby Trastevere or Monti areas is preferable in Rome to avoid long commutes in congested traffic. Many hotels are also found near Termini central train station, which is a convenient alternative for those traveling on a budget.
Good places to stay in the city center include the areas between Piazza San Marco, Piazza Santa Croce, Ponte Vecchio, the Arno river, and Piazza Santa Maria Novella. Another great option is the “Oltrarno” district located in the southern part of the Arno river, close to Pitti Palace and Boboli garden, and walking distance from major monuments, churches, and restaurants.
The San Marco area is a great option for those who want to stay close to the action, although this is the busiest area in Venice. Dorsoduro, Santa Croce and San Polo districts are recommended if you need to stay close the railway station. For those traveling on a budget, staying in Lido or Mestre is a good option.
Many couples choose to create a honeymoon registry instead of getting traditional wedding gifts. Given2 allows you to easily add your honeymoon trip to the wedding registry. You can split up the total cost of your honeymoon in units (called “bows”), and let your friends and family contribute by buying any desired number of bows. Start exploring Given2 to create an effective wedding registry!
Where are you going on your Honeymoon? Is Italy one of your dream honeymoons?