Italy road trips

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Start planning your road trip in Italy

Hit the highways for a road trip in Italy and you’ll have an unforgettable vacation. You’ll cruise over picturesque, rolling hills dotted with vineyards, stopping at quaint wineries and restaurants along the way. Or explore rocky coastlines along the Mediterranean, or scenic lakeside towns. Wherever you choose to drive, Italy is a fantastic self-drive adventure.

What makes Italy a great destination for a road trip?

Driving in Italy offers an opportunity to immerse yourself in the country’s strong culture. Enjoy regional dining and meet plenty locals, all while taking in the picturesque, meandering countryside roads or vibrant cities at your own pace. 

The best road trips in Italy

There is no better way to explore all Italy has to offer than on a road trip. You'll discover mountain passes, tranquil lakes, natural hot springs, and vineyards, all at your own pace. Here are the top road trip experiences in Italy.

Cruise through the romantic Casentino Valley

From Florence, it’s a leisurely 38-mile drive into the scenic rolling hills of the Casentino Valley in Tuscany. This magical route offers an array of charming restaurants, laid-back accommodation options, and plenty of wineries to stop in along the way.

Explore history and beautiful scenery at Lake Garda

Fly into Verona and head straight for Lake Garda in the Veneto region, where you’ll find scenic pastel-colored villas flanking the gorgeous lake waters in Limone sul Garda, just 60 miles away. Stop to view Buonconsiglio Castle in Trento, or the Santa Giulia Museum in Brescia.

Adventure along the breathtaking Amalfi Coast

To do it all in one fell swoop, it would take just five hours to drive the spectacular Sorrento Peninsula from Naples, past Mount Vesuvius and Pompei, to Sorrento, Positano, and Salerno. But don’t speed through it and instead take a few days to enjoy the region's history, quaint dining, and sunshine. 

Soak up the Mediterranean sun in Sicily

An amazing three-day driving tour of Sicily could start in Catania at the foot of Mount Etna, then continue to the ancient Greco-Roman Teatro Antico in Taormina. Finally, drive on to cosmopolitan Messina, home to its Gothic Cathedral of Saint Mary of the Assumption.

See nature at its best in the Ortler Alps

The striking Stelvio Pass in Northern Italy sits right on the border with Switzerland in the Ortler Alps. Take the road into the mountains and travel along its winding hairpin bends. Enjoy spectacular mountain views en route, and take a dip in the hot springs of Bormio. End with a scenic drive around Lago di Livigno.

Tips and advice for touring Italy by car

Book your rental car before arriving in Italy to get the best rate. Speeding tickets are commonly issued and will be automatically charged to your credit card by the rental agency. Italians drive on the right, speed limits are in kilometers, and the majority of rental vehicles are manual.

When to go in Italy?


Spring and autumn are the best times of year to visit Italy. In summer, the central and southern parts of the country experience a few weeks of very hot weather; and it can get very cold in Northern Italy in winter, especially in the Alpine region. Take the area you intend to visit and explore into consideration when choosing the time of year for your trip. And avoid the month of August at all costs: the cities are absolutely teeming with people at that time of year.

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