The What To & The What Not To....
Luggage and bags: Depending on your length of stay, try to pack as little as possible. Take clothes that MATCH so you are able to interchange them. Be conservative in your color choices: black, brown, grey, dark blue if possible.
We travel in the Spring and Fall, so I alway do the layers so I can take off or put on what is necessary.
Clothing/Shoes/Weather Gear: This photo shoes a "no-no" the 1st time I traveled to Italy (white tennis shoes!). Instead, and thereafter for me, wear black shoes (tennis shoes are ok) so you don't stick out as a tourist and so you can use them as evening dress.
Toiletries and Medical Supplies: Pack your medicines with the prescriptions on them and an extra pair of prescription glasses if you wear them in your carry-on piece of luggage. That is one item that you can ill-afford to lose!
Photo Equipment: I advise not to take anything complicated or huge to lug around. Also, one item that thieves love to "swipe" is a camera. My daughter's camera strap was cut off while she had it on her sholder in a Cathederal!
Miscellaneous: Always carry your valuable in a money belt! Note from the photo, I NEVER carry a purse of any kind. In all of our travels, we have not been robbed because we carry nothing that can be seen. Even our camera (small) is on Allan's belt with sweater over it.Related to:
- Women's Travel
- Romantic Travel and Honeymoons
Excellent crystal from Pisa
Miscellaneous: An excellent low price souvenir crystal or glass to be taken back to your country can be purchased from several souvenir shops outside Piazza del Duomo at the town centre. It costs an incredible price of just two euros per piece. It measures approximately 3cm X 3cm X 5cm including the base. This is one souvenir crystal that we have admired very much! The photos above depict the same crystal that we bought taken at several different angles.Related to:
- Family Travel
Refrigerator magnet from Vatican City
Miscellaneous: This is a wonderful souvenir in the form of a refrigerator magnet to take home with you back to your country or to present to your friends and relatives as gifts! It is marvellous to look at and is rather shining and has a photograph of the Pope and a cross with an inscription "OVUNQUE PROTEGGIMI". It costs just 4.00 euros per piece and is available from the book store/souvenir shop near the entrance to St. Peter's Basilica. It is certainly one of our favourite collections of refrigerator magnets!
We are not sure whether the same souvenir is still available at St. Peter's Basilica, perhaps with a different photograph of the Pope. The souvenir which has a photograph of Pope John Paul II as depicted on our photograph above was purchased in March 2004 when we visited St. Peter's Basilica and the Vatican city.Related to:
- Family Travel
Luggage and bags: A backpack, rucksack or a light travelling bag to carry on you back or on your shoulder when touring Italy. It will become very handy when you make some small purchases such as postcards, small souvenirs, mineral water etc.
Clothing/Shoes/Weather Gear: Italy can be quite hot during the summer months, therefore light clothing is recommended such as t-shirts, shorts etc. Sport shoes or walking shoes are preferred if you walk a lot on your vacation. Spring and autumn can be quite wet in Italy, thus raincoats and umbrellas are necessary especially if you visit Italy in the months of March and April.
Toiletries and Medical Supplies: Don't forget to bring along your medicines if you are on medication. Painkillers such as aspirin and multi-vitamins tablets especially Vitamin C are recommended. Other medical supplies may include plasters for minor cuts, a pair of scissors and nail-creepers. Remember not to place any sharp objects in your cabin bags, otherwise they will be confiscated at the airport even before you begin your journey.
Photo Equipment: You are not supposed to forget to bring along your digital camera, camcorder complete with the necessary accessories such as memory cards, battery and battery charger.
Camping/Beach/Outdoor Gear: Bring along you swim wear if you decide to swim in Italy especially during the hot summer months of July and August.
Miscellaneous: Miscellaneous items may include mobile phone and its battery charger, mp3 player, iPod, binoculars, maps and guide books on Italy etc.Related to:
- Road Trip
- Family Travel
Guidebook on Florence
Miscellaneous: Florence, new complete guidebook to the city by Giovanni Cassetta is an excellent guidebook to the city of Florence. The 112 page 12 cm X 22 cm guidebook complete with a superb map of the city of Florence contains lots of information and colourful photos regarding the various tourist attractions and tourist destinations in Florence.
This impressive guidebook contains the following information:-
1) New guidebook for visiting the city and its art,
2) Seven itineraries fully illustrated in colour,
3) Map of the city with indications of monuments and each single route.
It costs just 4.50 euros a copy. Make it a point to purchase a copy of this excellent guidebook at most souvenir stalls on the first day of your vacation in Florence!Related to:
- Family Travel
3 Weeks in Italy
Luggage and bags: 1 carry on size suitcase. That's it-1
small back pack
Clothing/Shoes/Weather Gear: 2 belts
1 sweat pants for plane
2 very light weight cotton sweaters
2 capri pants
1 light weight dressy jeans (optional)
1 light weight jacket
4 tank tops
1 black skirt (Note to self-a straight skirt not one that blows up in the wind and gives shop keepers a free show! LOL)
1 silk scarf for draping over shoulders in churches or evenings out
Toiletries and Medical Supplies: Remember-if it doesn't fit in the regulation plastic bag and is less than 3 ozs - buy it when you get there.
make-up compact including eye make-up, lipgloss and blush
vitamins & pills
bandaids & Advil
hair gel, etc.
tweezers & scissors
shave cream & razor
Photo Equipment: 1 camera + film stored in x-ray pouch-those w/iphone can skip this
1 extra battery just in case
Camping/Beach/Outdoor Gear: beach towel
1 bathing suit
hat-crushable of course
Miscellaneous: no knife if you carry on!
knitting (if so inclined)
costume jewelry-I brought 2 necklaces and wore diamond studs w/screwbacks that I never worry about losing
tevas and walking shoes
Int'l driver's license
guide books & books-when finished, leave them there for someone else to read
reading & sun/glasses
travel diary & pen
small flashlightRelated to:
- Women's Travel
- Road Trip
- Budget Travel
Dress for churches and walking
Luggage and bags: You will have to carry all of your bags at least some distance even if you take a taxi so try for things that roll and not too heavy. Anywhere you go there will be steps of some type.
Keep your day pack smaller since most shops are packed and you don't want to knock over any expensive statues.
Clothing/Shoes/Weather Gear: Bring comfortable shoes for walking and conservative clothes for day touring. Some churches will not allow shorts, tank tops or skirts that are too short. Ladies, if you have a comfy skirt or dress wear that. If it's the middle of the summer and you really want to wear a tank top, invest in a large, lightweight scarf that you can tie around your shoulders when in the church. Guys, some places allow shorts, but be prepared to be denied entry.
Toiletries and Medical Supplies: The usual, nothing extravegant. Most hotels have hair dryers. If you're like using a wash cloth or loofa when you shower, you'll have to bring your own.
Photo Equipment: If you feel like lugging it around, Rome is the place to bring good camera. Just watch for theives. Although, unless a camera is professional quality it was my opinion that there was no way I could capture the magnificant sights on film when I was there
Miscellaneous: Carry a small bottle of water with you as a spare. Street vendors are really expensive (2 euro or MORE for a bottle of water or Coke) so if you can't hold out until you get to a cafe or store you'll have one handy.
While you are sightseeing
Luggage and bags: Bring a bag which can be put across the shoulder and which has inner compartments big enough to deposit camera and other valuables you (feel you) must have during sightseeing. This puts you on the safer side in the mass magnet cities in case someone on a motorbike wants to grab your bag or someone wants to slice the bottom of your bag. Fanny packs/belly bags are a very bad idea, especially in said mass magnet cities. They also scream “tourist” from afar. If you feel they are a must, cover them with a shirt.
Pack decent, this is Italy :-)
Luggage and bags: By all means, bring luggage with robust wheels or even a big backpack and maximum one piece of main luggage. No matter if travelling by car or with public transport, the distances between car park and bus and train station to the accommodation can be long. Especially in smaller towns the hotels in the historical centres won’t have a car park.
Clothing/Shoes/Weather Gear: Leave shorts and baseball caps at home or consider wearing them only at the beach. They shout out loud “tourist” and especially in the mass magnets of Roma, Firenze, Napoli and Amalfi Coast will most probably draw the attention of possible thieves immediately. Dress decent. Look at how locals dress. Italians dress nicely, they have a worldwide reputation for that. Bring comfortable shoes; you will walk a lot. Bring a raincoat or an umbrella. It might rain. Girls: bring a light sweater, jacket or shawl in case you want to visit churches. Bare shoulders and too short skirts are a strict no-no for any churches.
Toiletries and Medical Supplies: There is no need to bring a full bag of toiletries since everything is available at the pharmacies or at perfumeries, even in the smaller towns. But bring all medical supplies and a translation of prescriptions into Italian or at least the generic name of medications. Pharmacy staff is usually excellently educated (better than in an average German pharmacy, that’s what I can judge).
Photo Equipment: Cards, cards, cards… rolls, rolls, rolls. This should go without saying. Anywhere in Italy photo opportunities are around each corner. Bring a tele lens for architectural details or atmospheric shots. Bring a tripod for festival and night photos. Bring a flash for evening and night photos. And bring something to store your photos, since you won’t want someone to mess with your valuable photos, will you?
Camping/Beach/Outdoor Gear: italy’s hiking centres in the northern part of the country have an excellent infrastructure where almost anything can be rented. Not so in middle Italy (Appeninne mountains as hiking region). Here you should bring your own gear. For the beach: everything you would bring for a beach holiday of course. Although the majority of Italy’s coastline is lined up with “bagni” (lido – lidos?) where deck chairs and sunshades can be rented for a fee.
Miscellaneous: A dictionary or a small “how to say in Italian” book is always a good idea especially for anyone who wants to travel outside of the mass magnet pattern of Roma, Firenze, Napoli and Amalfi Coast. In this context I highly recommend to make notes in Italian about names of dishes or ingredients you don’t eat to present these to the waiter at restaurants.
Binoculars are useful for any birdwatcher or wildlife watcher.
Earplugs are a must for anyone who has a light sleep or problems with bells. Italy is a very catholic country and services are being held not only during weekends. The majority of town or church officials won’t stop ringing the church bells just because of some tourist rants like it happened in the town of Mezzema
Your Feet Are Everything In Italy
Clothing/Shoes/Weather Gear: DO NOT SKIMP ON FOOTWEAR! Italian vacations are by their nature walking vacations. The center of many towns are traffic free so walking is how they are seen.
Buy quality, well fit, supportive and comfortable shoes are a most important bit of kit. Make it a priority.
Buy them well before you leave and walk in them often. Blisters or sore feet can ruin you time in Italy. The only way to avoid this is preparing ahead.
In a city like Venice or Rome you will walk a ton (even if you are on a package tour) so just be well prepared with the best socks and footwear you can find.
Buy good socks to go with your shoes. Steer clear of cotton. Cotton looses it’s cushioning abilities quickly and takes a log time to dry.
Wool or synthetic blends continue to cushion even when wet and the are much easier to rinse out and wash. They dry more than twice as fast. Because they breathe well and wick moisture away from your skin, that are warmer in cold weather and cooler in hot weather. A bit of a miracle really.
Pack light if you can!!!
Luggage and bags: We had 1 large suitcase and 1 carry on each...of course if you can pack lighter, do so, as you will be lugging your bags through the streets, to and from the train stations ,and through the train stations.
Clothing/Shoes/Weather Gear: Bring at least one very good pair of walking shoes, you will be walking and on your feet constantly, on hot, crowded, cobblestone streets. Don't worry about style, comfort is optimum for all the walking you will be doing. I went to a specialty store beforehand (The Walking Company). They will fit you with a walking shoe suited for your foot shape...considering the amount of walking we did, it was worth every penny. I wore my Mephistos for touring, and was grateful I did. Dress for comfort...most of the women were either in shorts, Capri's, with tee shirts or sleeveless tops, also skirts and sundresses. The teenagers wore everything and anything, including jeans. The men wore either shorts, or light casual slacks with tee shirts or sport shirts. You do not have to dress up...neat and casual is fine. A walking sandal or flip flop designged for walking ( I purchased the Montrail Flip Flops, very sturdy) was great for the evening.
Toiletries and Medical Supplies: Bring anything you need....Also, bring travel size Woolite for laundering in the Hotel Room. Some guests actually went to Laundromats...but we had enough for 2 changes of clothes every day.
Shoes as fashionable and comfortable as can be!!!
Luggage and bags: Small small lugguage...you'll only end up hating yourself later when you are struggling up and down subway stairs...best wheels (if they exist) are rubber ones like bicycles tires... and of course if you have another duffel bags secure it to the luggage bar so you only pull one thing....DO NOT BRING A PURSE...only takes and makes for a good target if I don't want to look like a tourist with a camera attached to me a take a small shopping bag...I also keep a "decoy" small wallet in there with some change that's easy to get to so I don't have to take my "Main" stash from my purse.
Maps, Maps & more maps, research train schedules, what time stores close open and take their afternoon break.
Clothing/Shoes/Weather Gear: A little trick to save space and make extra room in your luggage...bring old clothes that you were considering discarding...I took 7 pairs of older underwear and discarded a pair a day...coming home with only the pair I was wearing...every little space counts...that gave me more space for my postcards, brochures and maps that I was carrying in my pocketbook.
Toiletries and Medical Supplies: Take toiletries (saline, moisturizers, toothpaste) that are almost 3/4 of the way finished so you can disgard them before coming home...therefore making room for your new purchases. Bring your conditioner but use the hotels shampoos....one less thing to bring...put aspirins in plastic sandwich bags so the space of the bottle will be saved...everything adds up.
Photo Equipment: Always take 1-2 throwaway cameras...nothing is worse then finding out you are in the most romantic place and your brand new camera displays a error code that you can figure out.
Miscellaneous: -Car rental *** book from home less costly...also take note of hours that car rentals are open regular car rentals are usually closed on Sat. & Sun. if they are open it's for only 3 hours Sat. 9A-12Noon.
-Stores in some areas were closed on Sunday and don't open till 2:45 PM on Monday...this is the best time to spend in transit...DO NOT LOSE YOUR WALLET ...if you do ... you'll lose your piece of mind, time & spoil the remaining days of your vacation...Best ADVICE get one of those thin pocket books you can find them at dollar stores..they are fabric have a string strap and three zipper sections...in the botom section I put my euros in the middle my lipstick American money that I'll need for my return trip and in the top compartment my passport...then I step into the the strap bring it up to my waist and actually tuck the thin 5X6 purse into the small of my back it feels very secure plus it's strapped to your body.
Travel light if visiting in the height of summer.
Luggage and bags: If you are going to have a base, and can leave things safely while travelling around, you could virtually take as many bags as you could afford to transport there.....BUT.....this might limit what you purchase while in Italy and that would be a shame, I think. You are going to see things that you would like to buy and take home -- so I would bring the bare minimum, and buy a bag there to come home with all of my goodies.
On the other hand, if you are going to be back-packing, and therefore often having to carry everything with you or having to leave your goods on a daily basis relatively unattended it still makes sense to me to travel light. It is not like you are not going to be able to purchase anything that you need --
Clothing/Shoes/Weather Gear: If doing a lot of walking, of course you will need the very best of comfortable walking shoes. As for clothing, I go for layering ie mix and match gear that you can add to for colder times (which are rare in summer). Always remember a light wool jumper and a weather jacket (multi-purpose). For the odd invitation to the captains cocktail party, I would throw in the uncrushable standard basic black dress, some dressy jewellery and your best shoes........better still buy some beautiful Italian shoes -- you won't be sorry.
Toiletries and Medical Supplies: Always remember your medication and scripts (plus letter from doctor if necessary) -- 30+, 30+, 30+ (my theme song) -- but you can purchase this in Italy too.................also very important in Italy from my perspective -- always carry water. You can buy along the way of course, but I never go walking anywhere without it -- and recognise the word potabile (drinkable) and non (not), might save your tummy a surprise.
Photo Equipment: Of course you must have photographic equipment -- humble is fine -- better is better, and if you are a photography nut, the more equipment the better, I guess. Most people that I know who are into photo taking usually carry a spare lens and a tripod.
Camping/Beach/Outdoor Gear: 30+ and a good hat with a wide brim. Oh yes, and the Italians might wear skimpy swim gear, but they do wear it even if sometimes the women take their tops off to get more sun.
Miscellaneous: Arm yourself with as much knowledge of the language that you can and try to use it........you will be surprised at how much fun you can have, and how much your efforts are
appreciated..........it doesn't matter that you aren't fluent.
Almost forgot................DONT FORGET THE MAP.Related to:
- Adventure Travel
- Arts and Culture
- Historical Travel
In case you want to bring any electrical appliances with you, here is the system Italy uses : 230 volts and 50 Hz. It is a "Schuko" plug and receptable with side grounding contacts (see picture)
An adapter will allow you to plug an appliance designed for one type of outlet into another type of outlet. Despite the fact that more than a dozen different types of plugs are in use, a typical travel adapter kit usually contains about five adapters which are capable of dealing with most of the outlets shown here. Adapters often manage this versatility by bypassing the ground/earth wire.
Beware : an adapter by itself will not change the electrical voltage. You must be sure that your appliance can handle different voltages (either automatically or through a voltage switch). If it can't, you will need a voltage converter.
Be prepared for rain in the spring
Luggage and bags: I use my faithful bag on wheels and a small knapsack on wheels which works perfectly for me.
Clothing/Shoes/Weather Gear: We were in Italy the last week in March and first week in April and we did have some rain. I think a trip is more enjoyable if you're prepared for inclimate weather.
Toiletries and Medical Supplies: I just discovered these little packages you can buy that you tear open, inside is a soapy pad you can use in place of a washcloth --
most hotels do not provide washcloths.
These packages can be purchased at a drugstore in the US.
Photo Equipment: Take plenty of film, very expensive to buy there.
Camping/Beach/Outdoor Gear: Do take a waterproof windbreaker, for warmth you can add a sweater or another jacket underneath, layer as needed.
Miscellaneous: I started getting a cold and went into a pharmacy for some cold pills. The pharmacist was so patient as I used my sign language to show him what I needed. Cold medicine is usually under the counter, so you will have to ask for it.Related to:
My husband and I stayed at the Hotel Santa Maria for three nights at the end of a three week trip...more
My sisters and I stayed 2 nights at this hotel and our time there was priceless. Matteo and his...more
We have stayed with this establishment many times. Initially, it was because they have free parking...more
Top Italy Hotels
- Sorrento Hotels
- 653 Reviews - 1464 Photos
- Rome Hotels
- 12284 Reviews - 27563 Photos
- Montecatini Terme Hotels
- 46 Reviews - 109 Photos
- Florence Hotels
- 5247 Reviews - 11830 Photos
- Venice Hotels
- 8289 Reviews - 21969 Photos
- Como Hotels
- 330 Reviews - 879 Photos
- Milan Hotels
- 2867 Reviews - 7205 Photos
- Rimini Hotels
- 270 Reviews - 626 Photos
- La Spezia Hotels
- 120 Reviews - 250 Photos
- Santa Margherita Ligure Hotels
- 90 Reviews - 295 Photos
Explore the World
- San Vitale Hotels
- Magnetic Island Hotels
- Catalina Foothills Hotels
- Petaling Jaya
- Uster Hotels