5 Days in Italy: What to See and Do

Romantic Venice, one of the best destinatinos for an Italy tour

As you know, the sun-kissed country of Italy is not deprived of amazing things to see. On the contrary, there are so many incredible sights to explore that planning a perfect getaway is not an easy task. And it’s rather hard to decide what should go on your must-see list as it is, but if time is of the essence and you have only a few days for sightseeing, this challenge becomes almost impossible. But don’t worry, we’ve got you covered. To help you plan a perfect Italy vacation, we’ve put together an example of a perfectly-paced itinerary, offering suggestions on how to spend 5 days in Italy without overdoing it.

I Have 5 Days in Italy. Where Should I Go?

One of the most important things to do is to find a balance. It’s too easy to overstuff your vacation, and although you will see and do a great deal – the chances are that you will simply cross the things off your travel bucket list, not enjoy them. And having a good time is always the priority when it comes to vacations. So, we suggest visiting no more than two cities. If it’s your first visit to the country, then Rome, the glorious capital, should definitely be one of the destinations. And why not choose one-and-only Florence, the cultural capital of Italy, as your second stop?

3-Day Rome Itinerary

Five days in Italy itinerary
Rome, Italy

First Day

The first day should be dedicated to getting to know the Eternal City. One of the best ways to get the first impression of the Italian capital is to embark on a walking tour, covering the city’s most famous highlights. An experienced guide will take you around the renowned landmarks, offering a brief history and some interesting facts about each, allowing you to get the feel of Rome’s charm. As a rule, the introduction to the city’s best and brightest takes about 4 hours. Considering that they are conducted on foot, the chances are that you will be quite tired after the walking tour, and planning anything grand for the evening is ill-advised. 

Our suggestion is to have a quiet evening – rest for a few hours in your hotel and head out again to enjoy a stroll through the busy streets of the city. Take your time to admire the incredible architecture and soak in all the glorious details. An intimate dinner in one of the local restaurants should crown the day. The day after you can start getting to know the city properly. 

long weekend in Italy

Second Day

Well-rested and excited, dedicate the second day in Rome to exploring the historical heritage of the fascinating city. Yes, one day is hardly enough to see even a fraction of everything the Italian capital offers in this regard. But every journey starts somewhere, so why not begin yours with sightseeing tours of the most well-known tourist attractions? Discover the world-treasure of Colosseum, fabled Palatine Hill, scenic Via Sacra, legendary Julius Caesar’s tomb, and the ancient ruins of the Roman Forum. 

Allow yourself the luxury of not being in a hurry, enjoy the experience, and don’t rush to move to your next planned stop of the day for the sake of staying on top of things. In this case, quality is much more important than quantity, after all.

Third Day

A good idea to dedicate the last day in Rome to touring the smallest country in the world – the awe-inspiring Vatican. Despite the modest size, losing a day enjoying the country’s museums is as easy as ABC. The Catholic Church owns one of the most impressive art collections in the world! There are 24 galleries in the Vatican – a true treasury of masterpieces. Covering all of them during your first visit is impossible, so the best approach is to concentrate on the three main galleries, for starters. 

But artworks are not the only thing worth admiring in the city. Make sure to save half a day to check out the Sistine Chapel, Raphael Rooms, Borgia Apartments, and Pio Clementino Museum. Plus, no Vatican tour is complete without a tour of St. Peter’s Basilica and Papal Tombs! 

2-Day Florence Itinerary

Florence, a great Italy tour destination
Florence, a great Italy tour destination

First Day

Luckily, a high-speed train can take you between Rome and Florence in less than 2 hours, which means that you will have plenty of time to enjoy Tuscany’s capital hospitality upon arrival. As usual, the best way to greet the new city is a walking tour, preferably with a local guide. Natives are in love with Florence and know how to show the city from the best possible side, so you will have no choice but to fall in love with it as well. And don’t hesitate to ask your tour leader for restaurant suggestions for the evening. Who can make better recommendations about authentic Italian dishes than a local? Alternatively, you can head to the Mercato Centrale, an open-air market that is all about amazing food prepared with love by artisans who know and value their craft. 

Wine in Tuscany
Wine in Tuscany

Second Day

Assuming that you are leaving in the evening and have some time on your hands before bidding farewell, devoting your last day of Italian getaway to admiring the world-renowned masterpieces is a fantastic plan. Florence is home to dozens of art galleries, housing works by Leonardo da Vinci, Michelangelo, Botticelli, Dante Alighieri, and Boccaccio, but two of the most famous museums are the Galleria dell’Accademia Exploration and the Uffizi Gallery. Depending on how much time you have, choose one and spend a few hours admiring the crème de la crème of Italian cultural heritage. Afterward, get some souvenirs or take one last stroll through Florence’s cobbled streets, soaking in the beauty and the warmth of the hot Italian sun, before getting to the airport or a train station for your journey back home. 

This 5-day Italy itinerary is a basis that can be easily tailored for any short Italian getaway. Not in the mood for artistic Florence? That’s easy. You can head to romantic Venice for a couple of days instead. Have less than five days for Italy planned? Not a problem, three days in Rome are a self-sufficient program. There are plenty of beautiful possibilities to choose from, but one thing is sure – there is no chance that you won’t want to come back to Italy to see more. And we will be happy to customize the suggested program to fit your needs and wishes, so don’t hesitate to contact us. We want to hear your thoughts on an ideal Italy weekend tour.

by Ksenia Zaiceva