Italy itineraries: South Italy trips

Ostuni. Photo: Shutterstock
Ostuni. Photo: Shutterstock

Southern Italy is celebrated for its vibrant culture, sun-drenched landscapes, and mouthwatering cuisine, which includes iconic dishes like pizza, and pasta alla norma. Explore our expertly curated Southern Italy itineraries, and whether your stay is brief or extended, you'll fall in love with this captivating destination.

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Itinerary #1: Explore Enchanting Southern Italy - Naples, Sorrento, and Capri

Embark on an enthralling journey through the beauty of Southern Italy. Over the course of 10 days, you'll uncover the charm of the Amalfi Coast, the allure of Capri, the culinary delights of Naples, and the ancient history of Pompeii. Southern Italy offers a captivating blend of coastal splendor, gastronomic treasures, and historical wonders just waiting to be explored.

Naples panorama with Vesuvius Mount. Photo: Shutterstock

Days 1-2: Naples - Gateway to the South 

Kickstart your Southern Italy adventure in the vibrant city of Naples, nestled by the Bay of Naples. Your first two days will be a deep dive into the heart of this lively metropolis. Immerse yourself in its historic streets, discover iconic landmarks, take leisurely strolls along the seafront, and savor the irresistible world of Neapolitan street food.

Day 3: Pompeii - A Glimpse into the Past

On day three, venture to the awe-inspiring ruins of Pompeii, frozen in time by the eruption of Mount Vesuvius. Then, on the fourth day, your journey leads you to the charming coastal town of Sorrento. Explore its enchanting streets and indulge in its culinary delights with a private walking tour.

Days 5-6: Picturesque Positano

The following two days are dedicated to the enchanting town of Positano, a postcard-perfect destination. Wander through its winding streets, bask in the Mediterranean sun on its stunning beaches, or set sail along the coast to discover hidden coves and the historic town of Amalfi.

Days 7-9: Luxurious Capri

Experience the luxurious charm of Capri during the next three days. Enjoy the freedom to explore the island at your own pace, visit its charming towns, and relish panoramic vistas from atop its dramatic cliffs.

Day 10: Farewell to Southern Italy 

Conclude your remarkable journey with a private transfer and a hydrofoil ride from Capri to Naples' Capodichino Airport. Depart with treasured memories of your unforgettable adventure in Southern Italy.

Capri. Photo: Shutterstock

Itinerary Summary: 

Here's an overview of this 10-day Italian adventure:

  • Days 1-3: Arrive in Naples, explore the city, visit Pompeii & Vesuvius, overnight in Naples.

  • Days 4-6: Transfer to Positano, enjoy leisure time at Positano Beach, take a boat tour along the Amalfi coast, overnight in Positano.

  • Days 7-9: Arrive in Capri, relax, and explore the island with guided tours, overnight in Capri.

  • Day 10: Transfer to Naples.

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Itinerary #2: Best of South Italy: Rome, Naples, Sorrento and the Amalfi Coast

Southern Italy beckons with its vibrant cliffside villages, rich cultural heritage, inviting azure waters, and beautifully preserved ancient cities. Dive into this enchanting region through an exhilarating journey.

Colosseum. Photo: Shutterstock

Day 1: Rome - The Eternal Arrival

Arrive at Rome International Airport and transfer to your Rome hotel. Spend your first two days exploring the timeless beauty and history of the Eternal City at your own pace.

Day 3: Naples - Gateway to the South 

After breakfast on day three, board a high-speed train to Naples. Immerse yourself in the city's rich history, from magnificent palaces to winding streets, ancient churches, and mysterious underground passages on a guided tour.

Day 4: Naples - A Day of Leisure

Enjoy a leisurely day four in Naples, immersing yourself in the vibrant atmosphere and flavors of the city.

Day 5: Pompeii and Herculaneum - Ancient Echoes

 Day five takes you to Pompeii, where the remarkably preserved ruins of an ancient city await your exploration. Continue to Herculaneum for another archaeological marvel.

Day 6: Mount Vesuvius and Sorrento - A Day of Contrasts

Day six begins with a visit to the infamous Mount Vesuvius, offering panoramic views of the region. Later, tour the picturesque town of Sorrento.

Day 7: Capri - Island Paradise

On day seven, set sail for the captivating island of Capri. Marvel at its dramatic rock formations, enchanting caves, and vibrant culture.

Day 8: Amalfi Coast - Scenic Splendor

Day eight is dedicated to the stunning Amalfi Coast, where you'll visit picturesque towns and soak in breathtaking coastal views.

Day 9: Sorrento and Return to Rome - A Journey's End

Enjoy a relaxing morning in Sorrento on day nine before taking a train back to Rome. Transfer to your hotel and take time to reflect on your remarkable journey.

Day 10: Departure

On day ten, savor a final breakfast before being transferred to Rome International Airport for your onward flight.

Amalfi coast. Photo: Shutterstock

Itinerary Summary: 

Here's an overview of this 10-day itinerary in Italy:

  • Days 1-2: Arrive in Rome and enjoy a free day for exploration. Overnight in Rome.

  • Days 3-4: Transfer to Naples, explore the city, and have a free day. Overnight in Naples.

  • Days 5-6: Visit Pompeii, Herculaneum, and Mount Vesuvius before transferring to Sorrento. Overnight in Sorrento.

  • Days 7-8: Take day trips to Capri and the Amalfi Coast from Sorrento. Overnight in Sorrento.

  • Days 9-10: Return to Rome and depart. Overnight in Rome.

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Itinerary #3: Wonders of Rome and the Amalfi Coast

Embark on an alluring journey through Italy that reveals the captivating charm of Rome and the mesmerizing beauty of the Amalfi Coast.

St. Peter's square in Vatican. Photo: Shutterstock

Day One - Arrival in Rome

Commence your adventure in the enchanting city of Rome. Waste no time and hop on a bus tour to uncover the treasures of the Eternal City.

Day Two - Rome's Timeless Elegance 

Start your day early with a tour of Rome's iconic landmarks, including the Spanish Steps, the enchanting Trevi Fountain, and the awe-inspiring Pantheon. In the afternoon, explore the Vatican Museums and the Sistine Chapel. Continue your exploration with a visit to St. Peter's Basilica, home to Michelangelo's masterpiece, La Pietà, amidst stunning mosaics and architecture.

Day Three - Rome's Ancient Heritage

On the third day, delve into Rome's rich history as you explore the Colosseum and the Forum up close. Stroll along the ancient Via Sacra, leading you to the Capitolium and Venice Square.

Day Four - Naples and Sorrento

After three nights in Rome, journey south to the captivating city of Naples. Dedicate a day to exploring its historic heart, finding solace in the beautiful gardens of the Santa Chiara Convent, and savoring the world-renowned Neapolitan pizza. Then, transfer to the coastal gem of Sorrento and indulge in its celebrated seafood for dinner.

Day Five - Island Retreat to Capri

On the fifth day, embark on an island adventure by boarding a boat from Sorrento's port to the enchanting island of Capri. Explore the charming village of Anacapri atop Monte Solaro before returning to Sorrento for an evening filled with more delights.

Day Six - Pompeii's Time Capsule

Explore the incredibly preserved ruins of Pompeii on day six, a testament to the city's ancient past. In the afternoon, enjoy a leisurely stroll through Sorrento's charming boutiques while savoring the town's famous limoncello.

Day Seven - The Amalfi Coast by Sea

On your final day, set sail on a boat trip to absorb the mesmerizing beauty of the Amalfi Coast from the tranquil sea.

View of Sorrento. Photo: Shutterstock

Itinerary Summary: 

Here's an overview of this 7-day Italy itinerary:

  • Days 1-3: Rome

  • Days 4-6: Sorrento (including day trips to Naples, Capri, and Pompeii)

  • Day 7: Amalfi Coast boat tour

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Itinerary #4: An Italian dream trip: Rome, Sicily and the Amalfi Coast

Prepare for a 10-day voyage through the heart and soul of Italy. Your journey commences in Rome, where you'll dive into the depths of ancient history and master the art of Italian cuisine. Continue to Sicily, where Baroque architecture and the formidable Mount Etna await, before concluding your Italian dream amidst the enchanting Amalfi Coast and captivating Capri.

Noto's basilica. Photo: Shutterstock

Day 1: Arrival in Rome - The Eternal City Beckons

Arrive at Leonardo Da Vinci International Airport, where your incredible journey begins.

Day 2: Rome - A Treasure Hunt in the Eternal City 

Embark on a treasure hunt through Rome's storied streets, guided by your private treasure map.

Day 3: Rome - Art, Culture, and Culinary Delights 

Spend your day exploring Rome's artistic and cultural riches, with an afternoon dedicated to mastering the art of Italian cuisine in Campo de' Fiori.

Day 4: Catania, Sicily - A Flight to Baroque Beauty

 Fly to Catania, Sicily, and explore the city with a guided tour. Uncover the Neapolis Archaeological Park and the enchanting Ortygia Island, then savor a delightful dinner in Syracuse.

Day 5: Noto - A Baroque Gem

Day five is dedicated to Noto's exquisite Baroque architecture, including a visit to the stunning cathedral and Palazzo Ducezio.

Day 6: Modica and Ragusa - Chocolate and Baroque Wonders 

Begin with a chocolate-making workshop in Modica, followed by a guided walking tour through Ragusa's Baroque marvels.

Day 7: Mount Etna and Bronte - Volcanic Beauty and Pistachio Delights

Explore Mount Etna's volcanic craters and enjoy tastings at a prestigious wine cellar. Then, discover the art of pistachio farming in Bronte and indulge in delightful tastings.

Day 8: Naples - Gateway to the Amalfi Coast

Fly to Naples, your gateway to the Amalfi Coast, on day eight.

Day 9: The Amalfi Coast - Breathtaking Scenery and Coastal Charms

Day nine is a full-day adventure along the picturesque Amalfi Coast. Visit Ravello's famed gardens, hike through the Iron Valley to Amalfi, and explore the charming town.

Day 10: Departure

After breakfast, transfer to Rome's airport on day ten, bidding farewell to your remarkable 10-day journey through Italy.

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Taormina ancient theater with Etna Mount. Photo: Shutterstock

Itinerary Summary: 

Here's an overview of this 10-day Italy itinerary:

  • Day 1: Arrival and transfer to Rome. Overnight in Rome.

  • Day 2: Rome treasure hunt adventure. Overnight in Rome.

  • Day 3: Campo de'Fiori cookery class. Overnight in Rome.

  • Days 4-5: Fly to Sicily, explore Syracuse and Noto. Overnight in Syracuse.

  • Days 6-7: Transfer to Modica, chocolate tasting, Ragusa tour, and visit Mount Etna and a pistachio farm. Overnight in Favara.

  • Days 8-9: Fly to Naples, transfer to the Amalfi Coast, and explore the coast and towns. Overnight in Praiano.

  • Day 10: Departure from Rome.

Itinerary #5: Dive into Apulia - cuisine & culture

Experience the enchanting region of Puglia in Italy with this comprehensive 10-day itinerary. Traverse the treasures of Apulia at your own pace with a rental car, from the captivating Gargano to the sun-soaked Salento. Discover Puglia's gems, including the charming towns of Lecce, Bari, Taranto, Ostuni, Polignano, and Alberobello.

Alberobello. Photo: Shutterstock

Day 1: Arrival and Bari's Cultural Charms

Your adventure begins with your arrival at Bari Airport. Spend the day exploring the elegant Murat district and the historic heart of Bari Vecchia at your own leisure.

Day 2: Castel del Monte and Culinary Delights

Journey to the captivating Castel del Monte, an exquisite fortress, before returning to Bari for a delectable guided street food tour, immersing yourself in the local culinary wonders.

Day 3: Ostuni & Alberobello - Picturesque Towns

Explore the picturesque towns of Ostuni and Alberobello, celebrated for their unique charm and cultural significance.

Day 4: Beach Bliss and Cultural Heritage

Indulge in a leisurely day on the enchanting beaches between Polignano a Mare and Monopoli, where stunning coastlines meet rich cultural heritage.

Day 5: Guided Trekking at Torre Guaceto Reserve

Nature takes the spotlight as you embark on a guided trek through the enchanting Torre Guaceto Reserve, immersing yourself in its natural beauty.

Day 6: Taranto - Steeped in History

Drive to Taranto, a city steeped in history, with its ancient core and strategic location offering fascinating insights.

Day 7: Sea Adventure in Taranto Marina

Set sail on an exhilarating boat tour in Taranto Marina, exploring the Ionian Sea and the possibility of encountering dolphins and whales.

Day 8: Lecce's Art and Cuisine

Journey to Lecce, renowned for its art and historic allure, and savor its culinary delights during a delightful street food tour.

Day 9: Orecchiette Cooking Class

Immerse yourself in the culinary traditions of the region as you learn to craft orecchiette pasta under the expert guidance of a professional chef. The experience is complemented by tastings of local products and beverages.

Day 10: Journey's End and Departure

As you return to Bari Airport on your final day, take a moment to reflect on the incredible experiences gained during this unforgettable journey through the heart of Puglia.

Ostuni white town. Photo: Shutterstock

Itinerary Summary:

Here's an overview of this 10-day Italy itinerary:

Days 1-2: Arrival in Bari, explore the city, and drive to Castel del Monte with a Bari street food tour. Overnight in Bari.

Days 3-4: Drive to Ostuni and Alberobello for walking tours, then enjoy a leisure day at the beach. Overnight in Bari.

Day 5: Guided trekking at Torre Guaceto Natural Reserve. Overnight in Bari.

 Days 6-7: Drive to Taranto, explore the city with a boat tour to Taranto marina. Overnight in Taranto.

Days 8-9: Drive to Lecce, take a street food tour, and enjoy a cooking class to learn to make orecchiette pasta. Overnight in Taranto.

Day 10: Drive and departure from Bari.

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Further reading…

For detailed Italy trip itineraries that bring your dream vacation to life, explore our Insight Guides' expertly crafted plans. Download one now for unforgettable 7-day and 14-day journeys, carefully curated by our Italy guidebook authors.