Bloggers Gosia and Rob in Florence which is one of the best places to stay in Italy.

Where To Stay In Italy In 2024 – Your Ultimate Guide By Italy Experts

Italy is blessed with almost excessive attractions. It has luscious countryside, Alpine mountains, ancient ruins, adorable villages, scenic lakes, and beaches aplenty. With such a bounty, it can be difficult to figure out where to stay in Italy not just for first-time visitors, but repeat tourists as well.

We’ve been visiting Italy since 2004 because Gosia’s family lives here. We’ve visited the most famous places like Rome and Venice 3 and 4 times, respectively, but we’ve also had the pleasure of exploring less touristy destinations such as the Calabria region.

Depending on your preferences, we’ve got equally good recommendations for the adventure lovers and the sun worshippers.

In this post we’re going to cover all kinds of holiday styles, from best places to stay in Italy for culture and history to the best place to go for unblemished nature and spectacular beaches.

Where To Stay In Italy In A Nutshell

There’s a lot of ground to cover when it comes to exploring the best places to stay in Italy. If you’re a TL;DR (too long didn’t read 😅) kind of person, here’s a short intro to whet your appetite.

➡️ Rome – Best for First Timers and History Buffs: The Eternal City is, put simply, magical. From incredible ancient monuments to dazzling Renaissance excess, it’s home to some of Italy’s most iconic attractions. When it comes to where to stay in Italy for first-timers, the capital must be part of the conversation.


➡️ Florence – Best for Culture Vultures: Boasting one of the world’s greatest art museums, Florence is the place to be if you delight in the aesthetic. The city’s wonderful collection of paintings and sculptures is matched by some of Italy’s most stunning medieval buildings.


➡️Venice – Best for Spectacular Architecture: There’s nothing on Earth quite like the canals of Venice, lined on every side by palazzi and piazzas. Although it’s often a struggle to escape your fellow tourists, the city retains its utterly unique charm.


➡️ Lake Como – Best for Nature Lovers: One of the best places to stay in Italy for luscious scenery, Lake Como is arguably the most glamorous of the country’s lakes. Hop on a boat and take in the mixture of natural splendour and glitzy residences from atop the sapphire-blue waters.  


➡️ Dolomites – Where to stay in Italy for Adventurers: The Dolomites are all about lush meadows encompassed by towering peaks. In the winter, the mountain range is a popular skiing destination, but it’s in the summer that you’ll discover some truly amazing hikes.


➡️ Cinque Terre – Best for Instagrammers: Even if you’ve not heard of Cinque Terre, you’ll recognise the colourful houses cascading down hillsides towards the Ligurian Sea. The picturesque five villages were famous for their beauty long before Instagram and remain stunning destinations.


➡️ Amalfi Coast – Best for Honeymooners: One of the best places to stay in Italy for couples, the Amalfi Coast’s combo of gorgeous old villas, breathtaking coastal views, and insouciant glamour makes it an unparalleled romantic getaway.


➡️ Sardinia – Best for Island Life: If you want places to stay in Italy by the sea, what could be better than the islands of Sicily and Sardinia? Both boast numerous beaches and excellent weather, coupled with some of the most delicious seafood dishes you’ll find in Italy.


6 Best Cities To Stay In Italy

City breaks are often the most convenient to organise. All you need to do is fly into the local airport, and you’re there! If vibrant cosmopolitan life is what you’re after, here are the six metropolises we’ve most enjoyed visiting on our travels around the country.

#1 Rome – Best For First Timers And History Buffs. 

Blogger Gosia in Trastevere, Rome.
Blogger Rob visiting Colosseum in Rome.

There are some cities we’ve visited where a long weekend seems like just enough time to see the major attractions without rushing about too much. Not Rome. There’s simply too much history and culture to absorb.

Rome is the best area to stay in Italy if you want to make a journey into the past, complete with some of the most impressive architecture and artwork that the country has to offer. 

(TIP: We love staying in the Trastevere neighbourhood, which is packed with charm and cool bars and restaurants.)

Things To Do In Rome

  • Learn about the history of gladiatorial combat at the Colosseum.
  • Observe the sunlight (and sometimes rain) spill through the oculus of the Pantheon.
  • Make a pilgrimage to Vatican City to see St. Peter’s Basilica, the Sistine Chapel, and the fantastic art collection of the Vatican Museums.
  • Marvel at the elaborately crafted Trevi Fountain (we recommend coming early morning or late at night to avoid the crowds).
  • Descend the Spanish Steps like a movie star.
  • Stroll through the sprawling gardens of the Villa Borghese.
  • Relax with a morning coffee at Piazza del Popolo or Piazza Navona. 

Staying In Rome Pros & Cons


  • Loads of stuff to do and see
  • Buzzing nightlife
  • Abundance of accommodation options


  • It’s almost always crowded
  • The queues can be daunting
  • Scams abound to entrap the unwary
🌟TOP Pick🌟
Eccelso hotel is our top pick hotel in Rome


The light, bright rooms of the Eccelso Hotel are where to stay in Italy if you want to experience one of Rome’s most upmarket districts.

Rome is one of the best cities to stay in Italy


With just 14 rooms, The Boutique Hotel offers friendly, personalised service in a great location, just steps from Vatican City.

#2 Florence – Best For Culture Vultures.

Blogger Gosia in front of the Duomo in Florence.
Florence is where to stay in Italy for art lovers.

Known as the cradle of the Renaissance, Florence is an ode to a transformative time in European history when some of the world’s most legendary creators gathered under the patronage of the wealthy Medici family to create great art.

The city should also be on your shortlist of where to stay in Italy for honeymoon holidays, as the city’s Medieval streets, candlelit restaurants, and gorgeous sunset viewpoints perfectly set the mood for romance. 

(TIP: Fly to Florence if you’re planning also to visit Tuscany.)

Things To Do In Florence

  • Absorb the Birth of Venus and other masterworks in the Uffizi Gallery.
  • See the  Statue of David in all his glory at the Galleria dell’Accademia. 
  • Try panino lampredotto (tripe sandwich) from Nerbone in the Mercato Centrale
  • Cross the Arno River via the 14th-century Ponte Vecchio.
  • Purchase farm-fresh produce at the Sant’Ambrogio market.
  • Spend the sunset at the Piazzale Michelangelo.
  • Enjoy views of the Cattedrale di Santa Maria del Fiore dome and the surrounding city from Giotto’s Campanile.

Staying In Florence Pros & Cons 


  • A haven for art lovers
  • The city is very walkable
  • Plenty of excellent Tuscan wines to glug


  • Very busy, even in the off-season
  • Summer can be stiflingly hot
  • The necessity of pre-booking for many major sites kills spontaneity
🌟TOP Pick🌟
Firenze Capitale is the best place to stay in Florence


Sleep beneath authentic frescoed ceilings at this family-run hotel, which boasts just 7 rooms inside an elegant 19th-century building that’s 15 minutes’ walk from the centre of town.

simple but nice hotel in Florence


This simply decorated property has an excellent location just steps from the Uffizi and has big, open rooms that are ideal for families.

#3 Venice – Best For Spectacular Architecture & Romance.

Dorsoduro, Venice.

Venice was once known as La Serenissima, a nickname that seems inappropriate these days for a city that is far from serene given the density of tourists that flock to this floating world. 

It’s not surprising that the capital of the Veneto region attracts such volumes of people, given it’s rather like an NFT: unique and inimitable. From the majesty of the Grand Canal to the quaintness of the smaller waterways that cut through the island, it’s an irreplaceable treasure.

We’ve been to Venice 4 times, and even the fourth time, Venice took our breath away as we found it super romantic❤️. (TIP: Visit in October for less crowds and still sunny weather.)

Things To Do In Venice

  • Grab a drink and watch the world go by in the Piazza San Marco.
  • Jostle your way to the apex of the Rialto Bridge and gaze down the Grand Canal.
  • Dazzle your eyes with the luxury of the Chamber of the Great Council in the Doge’s Palace.
  • Squirrel yourself away in a backstreet bacaro (wine bar) with a glass of wine and some cicchetti (Italian tapas). 
  • Take the Vaporetto to Murano to learn about the city’s fabled glassmaking.
  • Cross over to Giudecca and enjoy a quieter side of Venice.

Staying In Venice Pros and Cons


  • A completely one-of-a-kind experience
  • Travel via scenic waterways
  • Multiple islands to explore


  • One of the most expensive cities in Italy
  • Often overloaded with visitors
  • It’s prone to flooding
🌟TOP Pick🌟
Hotel Canaletto is our favourite hotel in Venice


Allegedly once home to Canaletto, the painter who made Venice his muse, the rooms here attempt to recapture a bygone era with gilded furnishings and colourful patterned wallpaper.

special places to stay Italy


This small hotel is the place to take up residence if you want a characterful lodging with plenty of history at a decent price point.

#4 Milan – Where to stay in Italy for Its Modern Side.

Milan is one of the most stylish cities to stay in Italy.

Milan is where to stay in Italy if you want a city that’s less touristy, is within easy reach of the country’s most famous lakes, and has all the modern conveniences. 

Admittedly, it may not be as charming as Venice, Florence, or even Rome. However, it does have thumping nightlife, a world-leading fashion scene, and the most famous opera house on the planet.

Things To Do In Milan

  • Hop on a vintage tram and ride through the centre of town.
  • Admire the numerous spires atop the Duomo di Milano, Italy’s largest cathedral.
  • Window shop in the ornate Galleria Vittorio Emanuele II shopping arcade.
  • See The Last Supper at Santa Maria delle Grazie (don’t forget to book ahead).
  • Go partying in the Navigli district along the canal.
  • Put on your fanciest outfit and spend a night at the opera/ballet at La Scala.
  • Experience a more modern side of Italy in the Porta Nuova financial district.

Staying In Milan Pros & Cons


  • Shop the latest fashions
  • Good public transport
  • Convenient day trips to Lake Como, Lake Maggiore, and Lake Garda


  • The most expensive city in Italy
  • Lacks the beauty of Florence or Venice
  • Not that many major attractions
🌟TOP Pick🌟
Andreola is our favourite hotel in Milan


Exuding a classical elegance, the Andreola is conveniently situated beside the Milan train station, just a short tram ride away from the cathedral.

Milan is the best place to stay in Italy for luxury and shopping


A chic, modern aesthetic pervades the Enterprise Hotel, which boasts smart rooms, a soothing spa, a restaurant, and a bar.

#5 Bologna – One Of The Best Places To Stay In Italy For Food.

Bologna is where to stay in Italy for culture.

Bologna lays claim to having the oldest university in Europe. To this day, the city is enlivened by the buzz of student life, which lends a modern aspect to the striking traditional architecture that dominates downtown.

You may have heard that Bologna is famous for its food, but one of the most curious things we’ve found about the capital of Emilia-Romagna is that it’s not the kind of place you just walk into a restaurant and expect good eating. You must know where to go ahead of time, but when you do, mamma mia!

Things To Do In Bologna

  • Learn a little something at the University of Bologna’s museums.
  • Weave in and out of the city’s medieval porticoes.
  • Explore the incredible monuments of the Certosa di Bologna cemetery.
  • Sign up for a food tour and dine on regional specialities like prosciutto, Parmigiano, and the original version of bolognese. 
  • Take a turn around the Piazza Maggiore, snapping pics of the surrounding palazzi and the Basilica di San Petronio. 

Staying In Bologna Pros & Cons


  • Less crowded with tourists than other cities
  • An intriguing mix of upmarket style and studenty fizz
  • Excellent for foodie fare


  • You have to sort the good from the bad restaurants
  • Not as much to see as some other cities
🌟TOP Pick🌟
Mercure is our top pick hotel in Bologna


This smartly modern hotel is just off from the Bologna train station and offers paid private parking, making it incredibly convenient for trips out of town.

best location to stay in Italy for a unique city trip


If you’re looking for a bargain, the Hotel Panorama has clean, simple rooms right in the heart of the city.

#6 Naples – A Walk On The Wild Side.

The streets of Naples.

Some people will tell you Naples is an awful dump. Others will tell you it’s an underrated gem. Our take is that it’s undeniably messy and loud and perhaps a bit intimidating, but it’s also vibrant and alive.

For people who like a grittier, less-polished approach to tourism, Naples is one of the best places to stay in Southern Italy. It’s also the gateway to some truly wonderful experiences, like the Roman town of Pompeii, the island of Capri, and the volcanic Mount Vesuvius.

Did we mention it’s also the birthplace of pizza? Surely that’s reason enough to go!

Things To Do In Naples

  • Try the pizza at Gino Sorbillo on Via dei Tribunali.
  • Climb up to the crater of Mount Vesuvius.
  • Pop over to the fantastically preserved Roman city of Pompeii.
  • Burrow underground to see the subterranean caverns beneath the city.
  • Wander along Spaccanapoli in the UNESCO-registered historic centre.

Staying In Naples Pros & Cons


  • Very affordable
  • See a more down-to-earth side of Italy
  • Perfect jumping off point for Pompeii and Herculaneum


  • One of the most crime-ridden big cities in Italy
  • Streets are often chaotic and dirty
  • The city is noisy at night
🌟TOP Pick🌟
special places to stay Italy


Cheap places to stay in Italy aren’t abundant, but this slightly suburban property has excellent deals on swanky, stylish rooms.

A cool hotel to stay in Naples


Located in one of the most affluent neighbourhoods of Naples, Hotel Poerio fits right in with its contemporary and sophisticated décor.

Best Places To Stay In Italy On The Coast

Thanks to its distinctive boot-like shape, Italy is encircled by sea. That geographical fact has gifted the country with miles and miles of heart-stopping coastline where you’ll find some of the most romantic spots in Europe.

#7 Cinque Terre – Best For Instagrammers.

Vernazza, Cinque Terre

The colourful houses of the Cinque Terre (aka the Five Lands) are picture-perfect. Originally fishing villages, the communities on this stretch of the Italian Riviera have managed to preserve their quaint charm despite the influx of tourism.

This is where to stay in Italy if you want to spend a few lazy days slow travelling along the coast, picking your way through each of the Cinque Terre fuelled by gelato, fritto misto, and focaccia.

Cinque Terre is super pricey, but we felt like it was worth every Euro cent! If your budget allows it, we reccommend booking one of the hotels with a view.

 Things To Do In Cinque Terre

  • Sample the local vintage at a wine bar in Manarola.
  • Escape to the quiet of lesser-visited Corniglia.
  • Join a sunset cruise complete with Italian food and drinks.
  • Hike the hill above Vernazza for stunning views of the town.
  • Bonus: hike the entire Cinque Terre coastline over the course of a couple of days.
  • Lounge, mermaid-like, on the rocks surrounding the harbour of Riomaggiore.
  • Hire a beach umbrella for the day and camp out on the sandy beaches of Monterosso.

Staying In Cinque Terre Pros & Cons


  • Incredible views
  • Pleasant hikes 
  • Delicious seafood


  • Daunting crowds, especially during the summer
  • Pricy accommodation and meals
  • Only really accessible using public transport
🌟TOP Pick🌟
unique place to stay in Cinque Terre


Located in Levanto, the gateway to the Cinque Terre, this property offers bijou rooms and breakfast a short walk from a sandy beach.

Cinque Terre is one of the best places to stay in Italy for couples


Cheap and cheerful rooms on Riomaggiore’s main street, within 5 minutes of the village train station and the marina.

#8 Amalfi Coast – Where to stay in Italy for Honeymooners.

Amalfi Coast in one of the best places to stay in Italy for couples.

This is where to stay in Italy for couples on a romantic vacay. It’s possibly the most beautiful piece of coastline in Italy thanks to a blend of adorable towns, turquoise waters, and verdant cliffs that slip into the sea.

The Amalfi Coast isn’t just for lovers, however. The region has something for almost everyone, no matter if your idea of the perfect getaway involves energetic hikes, shopping in independent boutiques, sunning yourself by the sea, or admiring architecture. 

We visited the Amalfi Coast as a weekend trip from Naples, and you can also combine it with Pompeii.

Things To Do On The Amalfi Coast

  • Take a daytrip to the Isle of Capri.
  • Seek some solace at the medieval Amalfi Cathedral.
  • Sample the local limoncello amidst the streets of Sorrento.
  • Hike the Path of the Gods (Sentiero degli Dei) from Bomerano to Nocelle.
  • Ride the Sita bus or hire a private car to travel the scenic SS163 road along the coastline.

Staying On The Amalfi Coast Pros & Cons


  • One of the most picturesque places in Italy
  • Glamorous seaside towns
  • Lots on offer every kind of visitor


  • Hotels are generally expensive
  • Tour groups invade the main towns during the day
  • Parking is a challenge
🌟TOP Pick🌟
best location to stay in Italy for honeymoon


On the outskirts of Praiano, this sweet little family-run B&B has great views and easy access to a nearby pebble beach.

cool place to stay in Italy


This prettily tiled hillside hotel in Bomerano comes with an outdoor pool and is well-situated for hiking the Path of the Gods.

#9 Puglia – Best For A Mixture Of Countryside And Coast

Alberobello in Puglia.

Occupying the so-called “heel of Italy,” Puglia is rarely top of anyone’s list of places to visit. To be honest, we’re not entirely sure why. It has rolling countryside, sandy beaches, and delicious rustic cuisine – factors that have attracted domestic Italian tourists for decades.

Perhaps the most unique aspect of Puglia is the white-washed trulli houses with conical roofs that pop up all over the countryside, but especially in the village Alberobello

Things To Do In Puglia

  • Party it up in the nightclubs of the regional capital, Bari.
  • Stay in one of the distinctive trulli houses scattered throughout the Pugliese countryside.
  • Navigate the baroque streets of honey-stoned Lecce, aka the “Florence of the South.”
  • Relax and refresh in the attractive resort towns of Monopoli, Vieste, Otranto, and Polignano A Mare.
  • Plan a road trip through the white-washed hilltop habitations of Valle d’Itria, including Martina Franca, Locorotondo, and Ostuni.

Staying In Puglia Pros & Cons


  • Less crowded than other coastal parts of Italy
  • Mixture of sandy beaches and pastoral campagna
  • Delightful hill towns


  • A car is essential if you want to explore rural Puglia
  • Parking is tricky in smaller habitations
  • Doesn’t particularly cater for non-Italian-speaking tourists
🌟TOP Pick🌟
where to stay in Italy with family


An outdoor swimming pool, a tennis court, and free private parking are among the attractive facilities at this rural, beachfront apartment hotel.

best place to stay in Italy with family


This incredibly affordable coastal resort in the north of Puglia boasts spacious rooms, an outdoor pool, a breakfast buffet, and free private parking.

#10 Positano – Best For The High Life.


When people imagine cool places to stay in Italy, they often think of Positano. The town is trendy and stunning, with loads of tiny streets lined by pastel-coloured houses flowing like rivulets down towards the sea.

If you’re going to come here, you need to do it in style or become relegated to the mass tourism that overtakes the place in the warmer seasons. This isn’t a place to visit on a budget, but somewhere to let the purse strings flow free.

Things To Do In Positano

  • Rent a boat and spend the day exploring the Amalfi Coast from the water.
  • Live it up at the Arienzo Beach Club with parasols and spritzes.
  • Splurge on an ever-so-chic meal at La Sponda in the famous La Sirenuse hotel.
  • Purchase a handmade souvenir from one of the numerous shops occupying the winding streets of Positano.
  • Escape the crowds with a hike up into the hills (a footpath connects Positano to the main Path of the Gods trail).

Staying In Positano Pros & Cons


  • Staggering scenery
  • Fashionable restaurants and bars
  • Fantastic weather


  • Steep hillside streets
  • Bustling crowds
  • Everything has a hefty price tag
🌟TOP Pick🌟
where to stay in Italy for honeymoon


The views are the highlight of La Nereidi, a simple B&B that offers double rooms and self-contained apartments.

best places to stay in Italy for couples


One of the best deals you’ll find in Positano, Il Canneto is a little further out of town but has a balcony with every room.

Best Areas To Stay In Italy For Outdoor & Nature

If being beside the sea isn’t high on your list of must haves, there are several mountain ranges and fantastic inland lakes in the north of Italy that might float your boat.

#11 Lake Como – Best For Nature Lovers.

Lake Como is one of the best places to stay in Italy for outdoor lovers.

This is where to stay in Italy for a week if you want to experience the country’s most fashionable lake. Numerous historic villas dot the green hillsides, perched above the sparklingly blue water. Although you probably won’t run into George Clooney, there are plenty of opportunities to indulge your inner celebrity with sumptuous vistas that look like movie sets. 

Ferries between the main towns make it easy to get around, although be warned: during high season the wait to get on a boat can be extensive.

Things To Do On Lake Como

  • Shop along the streets of the village of Bellagio, the so-called “Pearl of Lake Como.”
  • Hike the Greenway along Lake Como’s western shore.
  • Hire a private boat and absorb Lake Como from the best vantage point, the lake itself, setting aside time for a swim.
  • See the sights of the city of Como, including the medieval gothic cathedral and the Tempio Voltiano, dedicated to Italian inventor Count Volta.
  • Explore the numerous villas that dot the lakeside, from the film-famous Villa Balbianello to the lavishly proportioned Villa Carlotta.

Staying On Lake Como Pros & Cons


  • Historic villas
  • Graceful lakeside towns
  • Wild swimming


  • Prices are high
  • Very crowded between July and September
🌟TOP Pick🌟
cool places to stay in Italy


Located in the town of Brunate, above the city of Como, this quaint residence offers wonderful panoramic views of the lake.

best area to stay in Italy for nature


Towards the very northern end of Lake Como, this simply decorated hotel’s biggest attractions are a sizable outdoor pool and free private parking.

#12 Dolomites – Best For Adventurers.

Dolomites is where to stay in Italy for adventure lovers.

If you’re looking for a holiday with lots of outdoor activities, the Dolomites is where to stay in Italy. Hike, rock climb, ski, mountain bike, and raft your way through gorgeous scenery and unblemished nature.

You don’t have to be a fitness fanatic to enjoy the Dolomites, with plenty of walking trails that are suitable for families with young children. On the other hand, if you want to test your mettle, we recommend joining a tour that explores the via ferrata climbing routes, which involve scrambling over rock ledges with the support of anchored cables. It’s thrilling, but not for the faint of heart!

Things To Do In The Dolomites

  • Take the cable car up to Alpe di Siusi, Europe’s highest alpine meadow.
  • Row across the mirror-like waters of Lago di Braies.
  • Feel the adrenaline on a via ferrata rock climbing tour
  • Road trip through the region’s tiny mountain villages (we particularly loved Santa Maddalena).
  • Hike around the famous Tre Cime di Lavaredo, a relatively easy and rewarding trail that offers amazing views.

Staying In The Dolomites Pros & Cons


  • Perfect for adventure seekers
  • Awe-inspiring mountain panoramas
  • Commune with nature


  • Far from other Italian attractions
  • Many trails are closed outside of the warmer months
  • Bad weather can scupper the best-laid plans
🌟TOP Pick🌟
best areas to stay in Italy for hiking and skiing


Gazing down upon the town of Ortisei, this chalet-like hotel is an adults-only space with a sauna, restaurant, and free parking.

best places to stay in Italy for outdoor


This cozy, secluded spot is framed by mountains and comes with a sauna, fitness centre, restaurant, and breakfast.

#13 Lake Garda – Best Place To Stay In Italy With Family.

Lake Garda

Lake Garda is Italy’s largest lake, stretching 52 kilometres from the mountainous northern end to the more resort-like southern end. Although it doesn’t have the splendid villas of Lake Como, there are still some charming towns to explore.

Of the three major lakes, Lake Garda is where to stay in Italy with family. There are lots of fun water-based activities to keep children occupied, plus several theme parks in the vicinity to choose from.

Things To Do On Lake Garda

  • Ride the cable car from the terracotta-coloured town of Malcesine up Monte Baldo.
  • Explore the battlements of the Scaliger Castle in historic Sirmione.
  • Rent a board from the Pier Watersports Center and windsurf the Vento and Ora winds. 
  • Take the kids to the Gardaland Amusement Park for rollercoasters, water slides, and Peppa Pig Land. 
  • Relax on the sandy beach of Lazise, before heading into its old town to sample the local wine.

Staying On Lake Garda Pros & Cons


  • Good for families 
  • Plenty of accommodation options
  • Sandy beaches


  • Few historical or cultural sights
  • Time-consuming to get around
🌟TOP Pick🌟
where to stay in Italy for a week


Perfectly situated above Lake Garda’s eastern shore, this stylish retreat has a big outdoor pool, a restaurant with lovely views, and free private parking.

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On the northern end of Lake Garda, the Hotel Antica Croce offers a mixture of rooms and apartments, complemented by an outdoor pool and free parking.

#14 Lake Maggiore – Best For Island Hopping.

Borromean Islands of Lago Maggiore.

Spend any amount of time around Lake Maggiore and you’ll notice a lot of the area bears the name of Borromeo. That’s because the Borromeo family managed to acquire a lot of the land hereabouts, consolidating it into their own unofficial fiefdom and using their riches to build some truly stunning monuments over the centuries.

The most impressive of these monuments are located on Isola Bella and Isola Madre, but there’s also more to see than just the islands.

Things To Do On Lake Maggiore

  • Walk (and drink) in the footsteps of Hemingway at the Grand Hotel des Iles Borromees in Stresa.
  • Organise a boat tour to the Borromean islands, which boast incredible palazzi and beautifully manicured gardens.
  • Wander the imposing halls of the Rocca di Angera, a fortress perched on limestone crags above the water.
  • Inhale the sweet scents of the flowers at the botanical garden of Villa Taranto in Verbania.
  • Ride the slightly bizarre but exhilarating bucket gondola from Laveno-Mombello up to the peak Sasso del Ferro.
  • Follow Lake Maggiore into Switzerland and visit the town of Locarno with its cobblestoned piazza, stone castle, and hilltop religious sanctuary. 

Staying On Lake Maggiore Pros & Cons


  • Easy to reach from Milan
  • Unique islands
  • Less touristy (slightly) than Lake Como or Lake Garda


  • Not as stylish as Lake Como
  • Not as many water sports as Lake Garda
🌟TOP Pick🌟
unique places to stay in Italy


A fantastic opportunity to stay on one of the Borromeo Islands in crisply elegant rooms that come with free breakfast.

Lake Maggiore is one of the most special places to stay Italy


Up in the hills of Miazzina, a bit set back from the lake, this hotel offers a selection of modern rooms and apartments at affordable prices.

Where To Stay In Italy For Beaches

There are lovely beaches scattered throughout Italy, but here we’ve chosen some of our favourite places for sandy seashores.

#15 Sardinia – Best For Unique Places To Stay In Italy.

Cala Goloritze, Sardinia

One of the best areas to stay in Italy for good weather and great beaches, Sardinia is all about the laidback vibes

As long as you avoid the peak summer season in July and August, you’ll find the beaches busy but not overcrowded, with plenty of sun to boost that golden-brown tan. 

Things To Do In Sardinia:

  • Dive into the waves of the Costa Smeralda (Emerald Coast) from Spiaggia del Principe.
  • Hop on the ferry and discover the pristine shore of the Maddalena islands.
  • Snap wildlife shots of the flamingos in Molentargius Nature Park in Cagliari.
  • Ponder over the ruins of a unique Bronze Age culture at Nuraghe Su Nuraxi.
  • Head west to see the rainbow-hued town of Bosa.

Staying In Sardinia Pros & Cons


  • The beaches
  • Beautiful weather
  • Less tourists than the mainland


  • Navigating the island without a car is challenging and time-consuming
  • Few remarkable historic monuments.
🌟TOP Pick🌟
best place to stay in Italy with family


This uniquely decorated hotel on the north coast of Sardinia is steps from the beach but also has its own outdoor pool.

where to stay in Italy for 2 weeks


Relax in style at this 5-star hotel, which provides an outdoor pool, a sun terrace, a private beach, water sports, and an all-day restaurant.

#16 Sicily – Best For Cheapest Places To Stay In Italy.

Sicily is the best place to stay in Italy for beaches.

You could easily spend two full weeks exploring all that Sicily has to offer, from the fascinating cities of Syracuse and Palermo to the chichi resort towns like Taormina (most recently featured in season two of the White Lotus).

Of course, there is also the amazing array of little beaches, notched into cliffsides and bays. Purchase a bottle of the fruity local wine, park up on the sand, and spend the day dozing to the sound of gently lapping waves.

Things To Do In Sicily

  • Laze on the sands beneath the Scala dei Turchi (Turkish Steps) land formation.
  • Dig into the island’s ancient past with a trip to the Valley of the Temples in Agrigento.
  • Stroll around the bucolic countryside surrounding the ruins of Segesta.
  • Sample the local vino at Benanti at the foot of Mount Etna.  
  • Experience the lavish lifestyles of the nobility with a visit to the Palazzo Biscari in Catania.

Staying In Sicily Pros & Cons


  • Good prices
  • Plentiful beaches
  • Delicious wine


  • Very hot in the warmer seasons
  • Exploring without a car limits your options
🌟TOP Pick🌟
best places to stay in Southern Italy


Found in the seaside town of San Vito Lo Capo, this hotel has unfussy modern rooms, a complimentary breakfast, and private parking.

where to stay in Italy with kids


Contemporary chic meets convenience at the Hermes Hotel, which is a short walk to the beach of San Vilo Lo Capo.

#17 Rimini – Best For Spotless Sand And Scorching Sun.


Rimini boasts one of the nicest beaches in the whole of Italy. There’s something for everyone on the 15 kilometres of sandy coast, from shallow bathing areas that are perfect for families to stretches full of bars that cater for party people.

Although Rimini is principally a seaside resort, the metropolis also lays claim to being the birthplace of Italy’s most famous director, Federico Fellini. A fancy new museum dedicated to him opened just a couple of years ago, adding a new dimension to the city.

Things To Do In Rimini

  • Visit the beach to sunbathe during the day, then return at night for a sunset cocktail.
  • Shop for souvenirs around the Piazza Cavour, before sitting down for a coffee and some people watching on the city’s main square.
  • See all the country’s best attractions on a smaller scale at Italia in Miniatura.
  • Walk in the footsteps of Fellini, checking out the Fulgor Palace cinema where the director was first inspired and the Sismondo Castle where compelling exhibits bring his masterpieces to life.

Staying In Rimini Pros & Cons


  • Beach fun for families, couples, and friends
  • Ideal base to explore the city-state of San Marino


  • Attracts huge crowds in the summer
  • Not many places of historical interest
🌟TOP Pick🌟
where should I stay in Italy for a beach vacation?


Offering contemporary chic rooms, this beachfront hotel comes with complimentary breakfast, an outdoor pool, a sauna, and two restaurants.

Italy where to stay on the beach


The rooms here may be small, but they come at an absolutely bargain price for such proximity to the beach.

Where To Stay In Italy: FAQs

How many days in Italy is enough?

If you only want to see the “main highlights,” you could whip round in about two weeks, but you’d miss a hell of a lot. Instead, we’d recommend breaking your exploration of this beautiful country into several holidays. 

What part of Italy should I stay in?

That depends what kind of vacation you’re after. Florence is where to stay in Italy if you like being in a bustling city surrounded by atmospheric buildings. Alternatively, you could head to the Dolomites for a rural, adventure-based getaway. 

What is the prettiest area in Italy?

Every person who has visited Italy probably has their own answer to that question. Personally, we were enchanted by the Amalfi Coast, which is brimming with picture-perfect towns and delicious seafood restaurants. Go in the off season to avoid the crowds.

Where should I go for my first time in Italy?

This is an easy one: Rome. It’s hand-down the best location to stay in Italy for first timers. The capital is full of history, has tons to see, and there’s a buzzing food and drink scene to keep you refreshed and energised.

Where to stay in Italy on a budget?

Naples is one of the most budget-friendly places to visit in Italy. The accommodation is affordable, flights are a steal, and meals can be cheaply purchased from local trattorias and pizzerias. It’s also a good base for Pompeii, Mount Vesuvius, and the beach.

How much money do I need for 1 week in Italy?

That really depends on where you visit. Positano, Venice, and Lake Como, for example, are much pricier destinations than the Dolomites, Sicily, or Naples. As a VERY rough guide, we spent about €300 per day for two people, including accommodation.

What is the best way of getting around Italy?

Hiring a car is a great way to great around Italy. It allows you to visit more of the smaller villages and towns that aren’t well served by public transport, plus you can set your own schedule.

Where To Stay In Italy: Conclusion

Our trips to Italy have always been full of fun and adventure. Although some parts of the country may appeal more to your sensibilities than others, there’s no wrong choice of city or region to visit!

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