Italy is one of the most popular holiday destinations in Europe. This beautiful country has so many regions to explore, and in each you will find delicious food and wine, wonderful beaches, warm summer weather, historic buildings, exquisite art and a unique culture.
However, many people have difficulty deciding where in the country to go. So where should you visit on your holiday? One of the best options is to see a number of places on the same trip by spending a few days here and a few days there. That way you can get a real flavor of different parts of Italy.
Here are five cities that you could base your trip around when you book your Italian holiday.
Rome does not need much of an introduction. The capital of the ancient world is a city rich in culture and history, and it is home to such world-famous attractions as the Colosseum, St Peter's Basilica, the Vatican Museums, the Roman Forum and the Trevi Fountain (made famous in several films including Three Coins in a Fountain and Roman Holiday).
When you visit Rome, why not combine a trip to the city with somewhere nearby? There are many places that you can travel to from Rome with ease, such as Sorrento with its stunning beaches, allowing you to see more of Italy on your holiday.
Venice is the ultimate romantic destination and a popular stop on multi-centre Italian holidays, like those from Italian holiday specialists Bellarome. Who could fail to enjoy gently floating along its picturesque canals in a gondola, stopping off in art galleries and ancient buildings, and soaking up the atmosphere?
Venice was an important commerce centre for centuries, and it is also known for its art and music. In fact, it is one of the most cultural places in Italy, and that is saying something.
Some of the must-see attractions here include Piazza San Marco, the Grand Canal and San Marco Basilica.
Florence is the regional capital of Tuscany, which is itself one of the most popular regions to visit in Italy. It was once home to Michelangelo, Leonardo da Vinci, Dante and many other masters, making it perhaps the best place to visit for art lovers.
Visit the Accademia Gallery, the Pitti Palace, the Uffizi Gallery, the duomo and Michelangelo's David, and soak it all up.
Famed for its leaning tower, you will soon realise that there is more to Pisa than its iconic landmark building. Visit Campo dei Miracoli, 'the Field of Miracles', to see the best attractions in the city. In this area you will find the cathedral, the Leaning Tower of Pisa, the Museo delle Sinopie and the Camposanto burial ground.
Milan is the financial hub of Italy. It is a modern, cosmopolitan city that is known for its food, football, nightlife, shopping and, most of all, fashion. Visit during one of the two fashion shows each year and you will find the place buzzing.
Some of the main attractions here include the huge Duomo, La Scala Opera House and the Brera Art Gallery. Perhaps the best of all, however is The Last Supper, the famous painting by Leonardo da Vinci. See it at the Santa Maria delle Grazie convent.
Take your pick:
These are just five of the best cities to visit in Italy, but there are many more to discover, including many smaller towns and villages throughout the countryside and along the coast. If you decide to base your trip around one of these cities, make sure you visit some other places in the surrounding areas to see more of Italy while you are in the country.