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New Year, new holiday! Check out the BEST destinations in Italy for a winter break...

January, 06 2020 ( Updated January, 06 2020)

Italy
Winter holiday
Winter sun
General
Family
Culture
Shopping
Events
Resorts
Rome
Tuscany
Florence
Venice
Turin
Naples
Amalfi coast
Sicily

We all dream of soaking up some Italian sunshine in summer, but in winter? Indeed! Italy provides an enchanting back drop for winter getaways. With the most of the crowds gone home, you’ll be able to explore these top Italian destinations at your pace, and at your leisure. The pricey accommodation rates also drop, so you’ll have more in the holiday budget for luxury moments and fun. A holiday treat indeed!

The Sicilian shores provides a haven for winter holidays

Italy's top winter-friendly holiday destinations

Italy boasts some truly remarkable cities to visit in winter. Picture gliding on a gondala through the atmospheric fog of Venice, sightseeing aroud the ancient colosseum and sites of Rome in the snow, exploring the  tranquil backstreets and piazzas of Florence on a crisp winter’s day, and soaking up the cosmopolitan flair of Turin, before you head off for a ski break in the Alps. These world-class cities are ready to greet you on your next adventure! 

Venice

Best time to visit in winter: January-February (for quiet piazzas, masked balls & Valentine’s Day!)

A winter tourist in Venice

With crisp, clean air to breathe in and tranquil waterways to discover in January, the city of Venice is a beautiful place that will inspire the senses. With its numerous masked balls and carnivals, February is always a colourful time to visit Venice and seek amusement in the long winter months. Why not beat the winter blues, with a ticket to a fabulous masked ball? An eccentric evening of costumed decadence will stay with you always! Of course, Venice is one of the most romantic holiday destinations in the world. Treating that special someone to a Valentine’s weekend in February will always be an unforgettable way to woo the one you love.

Rome

Best time to visit in winter: December (for beautiful traditions & Christmas lights) and early spring

Rome's colossuem in the snow

When in Rome, visit the Vatican and take a private tour around the ancient Forum. The quiet serenity of winter will certainly add to the VIP feel! The eternal city is breath taking in December, with the magical Christmas lights, decorated delicatessens to buy edible (and drinkable) gifts from and the traditional Nativity scene at St Peter’s Square to admire.

Florence

Best time to visit in winter: New Year’s and late winter (for the early signs of spring)

The River Arno in  Florence

Self-confessed ‘Tuscanites’ will feel like they have the keys to Florence in winter; with the chaotic queues of summer a distant memory. Enjoy the wealth of art on offer at the Uffizi Gallery and take a private tour to uncover the rich stories and cultural sights . A drive out into the Tuscan countryside also offers a magical way to enhance your winter stay; with picturesque landscapes that glisten with frost.

Turin

Best time to visit in winter: During the ski season, before you head off into the Alps!

A winter scene over Turin

Tempted by a pit stop in Turin? You won’t regret it! Enjoy the shops and make time to savour the famous Piedmontese drink ‘Bicerin’ (a decadent coffee, chocolate and cream drink). The best in town can be found at ‘Caffe Al Bicerin’. The Alpine-inspired cuisine on offer in the cities’ restaurants will also not disappoint food lovers out there! Luckily for those staying October – January, the wintertime and darkening evenings also set the perfect ambience for Turin to showcase its annual ‘Luci d’Artista’. The vibrant light festival brings illuminations and joyful displays to all parts of the city. The atmosphere will truly ‘light up’ your city break!

And for some winter sun?

There’s the south of Italy! The weather from Lazio southwards remains wonderfully pleasant and temperate throughout the wintertime. Naples and Sicily are timeless favourites for those in search of winter sun.

Naples & the Amalfi coast

Best time to visit in winter: December-January, to make the most of the sun-drenched beaches, UNESCO sites and nativity lights, without the crowds!

A sunny view over Positano, along the Amalfi coast

Perfect for hikers and those in search of a scenic road trip, the Amalfi coast offers guaranteed winter sun for an out-of-season escapade. With breath taking coastal paths and festively-decorated cities and towns to visit such as Salerno and the buzzing city of Naples, this region will keep you captivated throughout the winter. As well as the seasonal Christmas lights, traditional and modern interpretations of the nativity scene (known as 'presepi') take over the Amalfi coast and Naples from December – January; with those in ‘Piazza del Plebiscito’ and along ‘Via San Gregorio Armeno’ the most heavenly. Salerno offers breath taking light displays (Luci d’Artista), whilst Limatola Caserta hosts ambient Christmas markets and lights to beat get you in the mood.

Except for a couple of key dates, the UNESCO world heritage sites of Pompeii, Herculaneum and Torre Annunziata are open throughout the winter, so make time in your holiday to discover these incredible places. After an action-packed day of exploring the coast, savour some delectable festive bites (including panettone) at the regional institution of ‘Pansa Pasticceria’, which is located in Amalfi’s historical cathedral square, 'Piazza del Duomo'. The New Year celebrations and regional music concerts are also worth staying for!

Sicily

Best time to visit in winter: For the Christmas markets, visit in December. For the optimal winter sun experience, visit January-February!

A captiviating view across the Ionian sea, with Mount Etna in the background

The Italian island of Sicily guarantees welcome if not exotic, sun in the depths of winter. Soak up the sunshine whilst exploring Palermo (one the main settings for di Lampedusa’s iconic novel, ‘The Leopard’). With grand yet neglected buildings providing a romantic, aristocratic air to the bustling modern day streets, exotic palm trees and cultural attractions, this is colourful city of contrasts. Palermo also offers a host of Christmas markets if you’re around December-early January. The nearby town of Termini Imerese (30 minutes’ drive away) performs a live nativity play in the streets, complete with belly dancers! The medieval coastal town of Cafalu also promises beautiful beaches, for those looking to make the most of the fantastic weather.

Wherever you find yourself this 2020, we wish you an exciting year of happy holidays!

 “Buon viaggio!”

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