Search
Close this search box.

7 of the best road trips in Italy | An Italian Road Trip Adventure

Road-trips-in-Italy

An Italian road trip is regarded as one of the best experiences in all of Europe because of its magnificent mountains, breathtaking routes, beautiful lakes and beach cliffs, rustic houses, and mouthwatering local cuisine. No matter if you’re traveling as a couple or with all the girls, Italy’s roads and the secret locations they take you to won’t let you down! Rent a car—perhaps a vintage one—grab your keys, compile your go-to road trip soundtrack, and then get ready to go.

We’ve compiled a list of the top seven road trips in Italy in this article. When driving, it’s strongly recommended to make as many stops along the beautiful routes as possible to take in the gorgeous scenery.

Things You Should Know Before Driving in Italy

  1. If you have a driver’s license from a country other than the European Union, you must have an International Driving Permit (IDP).
  2. On highways, the speed limit in Italy is 130 kilometers per hour. These, however, vary depending on the weather and the road. Within cities, the speed limit is lower, at 90 kilometers per hour.
  3. In Italy, the legal driving age is 18 years.
  4. The legal alcohol limit in Italy is 0.05% (about 1 to 2 glasses of wine).
  5. Make sure you’re not driving in the bike or bus lanes, as this is against the law.
  6. Seat belts are required to be worn while driving in Italy.
  7. Children under the age of 12 are not permitted to sit in the front seats of the car.
  8. You are not permitted to use your phone or text while driving. If you are discovered doing either, you may be fined and your driving privileges may be suspended.
  9. Any violation of any law or rule carries a severe penalty and a substantial fine.

To set the tone, we’ve selected seven legendary road trips in Italy, ranging from peaceful Tuscan tours to adrenaline-pumping mountain escapades. Some are more difficult than others, but they all provide unforgettable experiences! The following are the top road trips in Italy.

The Amalfi Coast – A Coastal Paradise | Salerno to Sorrento

Take a thrilling trip around the Amalfi Coast to see some of Italy’s most beautiful coastline landscapes. Salerno, the primary southern entryway to the coast, is where you should turn west to reach Vietri sul Mare, a little community well-known for its ceramics and the beginning of the actual coastal route. The road narrows, the curves get tighter, and the scenery gets more dramatic as you go on, making driving more difficult. However, the mesmerizing cities and magnificent scenery make it an Italian road trip you won’t soon forget.

Amalfi-Coast-Road-trips-in-Italy
7 of the best road trips in Italy | An Italian Road Trip Adventure 10

The main center of the coast, Amalfi, is reached after traveling around 20 kilometers (12 miles). Head up to Ravello in the hills above after pausing here to explore the famous Cattedrale di Sant’Andrea making it a memorable stop on your road trip in Italy. Consider stopping here for lunch at the Ristorante Pizzeria Vittoria and taking in the breathtaking views of the town’s verdant gardens.

Continue to Positano, a fashionable village that is almost vertical and home to colorful, sharply packed villas that fall steep hillsides. After Positano, the road heads inwards, up, and across the hilly interior to Sorrento, a bustling tourist destination dominated by the ominous, black mass of Mount Vesuvius making your Italian road trip a varied and engaging experience.

Distance

Salerno to Sorrento approximately 75 Kilometers / 46 Miles

Travel Tip

For a beautiful view of the coastline, stop at the Castellammare Coast and Strada Panoramica in the direction of Sorrento.

Best time to Visit

The months of May through September are the greatest for traveling to the Amalfi coastline throughout the fall and spring.

The Great Dolomites – Majestic Mountain Alpine | Bolzano to Cortina d’Ampezzo

For mountain lovers seeking unforgettable road trips in Italy, the Great Dolomite Road is a must for a breathtaking journey. Beginning at Bolzano, embark on the journey and take in every stunning sight. For a thorough appreciation of the beauty of the surroundings, be sure to stop often. Feldthurns, Terenten, Brunico, and Misurina are just a few of the charming towns that offer well-liked rest areas where you can enjoy delectable meals and relax while taking in the breathtaking surroundings.

Dolomites-Road-trips-in-Italy
7 of the best road trips in Italy | An Italian Road Trip Adventure 11

The Schlern-Rosengarten Nature Park, a well-known natural area bursting with exhilarating treks and picturesque nature walks, shouldn’t be missed as you proceed on this Italian road trip. Your Italian road trip along The Great Dolomite Road is guaranteed to be a mountain lover’s heaven.

Distance

Bolzano to Cortina d’Ampezzo approximately 132 Kilometers / 82 Miles

Travel Tip

To enjoy the breathtaking scenery that this route has to offer, schedule a road trip that lasts 4 to 5 hours (or perhaps a few days if time permits). A quick hike is undoubtedly advised.

Best time to Visit

The summer months of May through September are lovely and warm, and the mountains are alive and vibrant.

Lake Come – The Peace of Nature | Lake Como to Bergamo

There are charming lakes and stunning southern shorelines along the route between these two Italian cities. When traveling this way, take the time to visit the historical museums and amusement and theme parks as you go to Bergamo.

Lake-Como-Road-trips-in-Italy
7 of the best road trips in Italy | An Italian Road Trip Adventure 12

Make time to visit Casa degli Hobbit, a charming Hobbit-themed estate tucked away a few kilometers after Como, if you’re a fan of The Lord of the Rings. Museum Cozzi Fratelli, Museum of Saronnese Industries, and Museum of Labor and Recreation add depth and fascination to your road trip in Italy. As you travel through the gorgeous surroundings on your wonderful road trip in Italy, learn about the beauty of these places and sites.

Distance

Lake Como to Bergamo approximately 92 Kilometers / 57 Miles

Travel Tip

There are many parks with lots of lush vegetation along this route. Make a day of it by taking a picnic and taking in the scenery.

Best time to Visit

The period from late April to early September is the ideal one for our Italian road trip.

The Tuscan Tour – A Cultural Extravaganza | Florence to Orvieto

This two-day trip connects Florence to Orvieto in the neighboring province of Umbria, passing through two of Italy’s finest medieval cities, the Chianti wine gems, and stretches of typical Tuscan scenery. Before heading south to the Chianti wine area, feast on magnificent art and Renaissance architecture in Florence to whet your stomach for the journey ahead.

Tuscan-Road-Trip-in-Italy
7 of the best road trips in Italy | An Italian Road Trip Adventure 13

Visit the Enoteca Falorni in Greve for a sampling and L’Antica Macelleria Cecchini in Panzano to try the famed bistecca (steak) of the area making your road trip in Italy a true culinary delight. From here, take the backroads to Siena, a breathtaking medieval city centered on a stupendous Duomo and a famous square from the 12th century called Piazza del Campo. The Pensione Palazzo Ravizza is a suggested place to stay overnight.

The following day, continue your Italian road trip and head to Montalcino to load up on Brunello di Montalcino, one of the most renowned red wines in Italy. The Val d’Orcia, which is to the east and is only a short drive away, offers typical Tuscan scenery with its rolling green hills, cypress trees, and hilltop towns. Take a break for lunch in Pienza before continuing to Orvieto, a beautiful hilltop town known for its magnificent Gothic Duomo, through Montepulciano.

Distance

Florence to Orvieto approximately 165 Kilometers / 102 Miles

Travel Tip

Don’t forget to bring a bottle or two of wine from one of Tuscany’s many vineyards.

Best time to Visit

There are fewer tourists and moderate temperatures from late September to early October and between April and May.

Abruzzo – Off the Beaten Path | Rome to Sulmona

Along this road, you’ll see several quaint hilltop villages, magnificent buildings, and rural eateries. A charming hilltop hamlet called Tivoli is around 30 kilometers from Rome and is a must-stop location on your road trips in Italy. It is well-known for its waterfalls, ancient Roman culture, and the presence of two UNESCO World Heritage Sites, especially the 16th-century Villa d’Este and Villa Adriana.

Abruzzo-Road-trips-in-Italy
7 of the best road trips in Italy | An Italian Road Trip Adventure 14

Make sure to include the Regional Natural Park Sirente Velino in your road trip itinerary as well. This park is well-known for adventure sports and cultural events. As you tour Tivoli’s treasures and the Sirente Velino Park’s stunning vistas, this Italian road trip promises an amazing fusion of history, culture, and natural beauty.

Distance

Rome to Sulmona approximately 163 Kilometers / 101 Miles

Travel Tip

A highly suggested stop on this journey is Celano Gordes, a well-known canyon of the Central Apennines tucked away a few kilometers before Sulmona.

Best time to Visit

The ideal months for road trips around Rome are thought to be April and June or September through October.

Sicily – A Mediterranean Gem | Catania to Ragusa

On this two-day journey of Sicily’s untamed southeast, seek out baroque marvels that are included on the UNESCO World Heritage List. The magnificent old center and outstanding fish market in Catania are excellent places to start. A seafood lunch is followed by a drive to Syracuse, where you may see the Parco Archeologico della Neapolis’ old Greco-Roman ruins and the Ortygia neighborhood’s magnificent baroque streets.

Sicily-Road-trips-in-Italy
7 of the best road trips in Italy | An Italian Road Trip Adventure 15

Finish off your day by spending the night at the opulent Hotel Gutkowski to add some elegance to your Italian road trip. This two-day excursion across the southeast of Sicily promises outstanding road trips in Italy with a variety of historical beauties and architectural splendor.

Continue to Noto on day two, where Corso Vittorio Emanuele, a boulevard lined with churches and delightful cafes, is undoubtedly Sicily’s most beautiful street. After you’ve had a chance to take it all in, head inland to the busy town of Modica, which is tucked into a large canyon.

Distance

Catania to Ragusa approximately 165 Kilometers / 103 Miles

Travel Tip

Make reservations in advance and treat yourself to dinner at the Ristorante Duomo, one of Sicily’s top eateries, where dishes are made by chef Ciccio Sultano, to cap off the journey in style.

Best time to Visit

The ideal months for road trips around Sicily are thought to be September through October.

Sardinia  – Island Paradise | Bosa to Capo Caccia

Beach lovers, gather around! You are the target audience for this Italian road trip. Explore magnificent beaches, rich vegetation, and craggy cliffs on opposite sides of the area to experience the best of all worlds.

Sardiniay-Road-trips-in-Italy
7 of the best road trips in Italy | An Italian Road Trip Adventure 16

The must-see destination on this voyage is Alghero, also known as “The Little Barcelona.” In this charming hamlet, take pleasure in a delightful blend of beach hopping, drinking cold beverages, surfing, and taking in the mesmerizing sunsets. With its ideal fusion of coastal beauty and a lively atmosphere, Alghero makes for an amazing road trip in Italy and is a haven for beach lovers.

Distance

Bosa to Capo Caccia approximately 71 Kilometers / 44 Miles

Travel Tip

Be sure to take some fantastic pictures while you’re in Bosa because this city is famed for its vibrant and bright houses.

Best time to Visit

This road trip is best taken between April and June when the weather is nice.

Wrapping Up the best road trips in Italy

Italy is a traveler’s paradise, presenting a rainbow of topography, history, and culture. Every location, from the sweltering Amalfi Coast to Sardinia’s wild beauty, guarantees a memorable experience.

Recall to prepare in advance, observe local traffic laws, and savor the alluring Italian way of life. Pack your bags, start the car, and go on an unforgettable journey through Italy’s picturesque highways.

FAQs:

Which season of the year is ideal for a road trip in Italy?

The cooler seasons of spring (April to June) and fall (September to October) are ideal for road trips in Italy. The great weather and smaller tourist crowds allow you to experience the attractions without having to wait in line for a long time.

Does driving in Italy require an International Driving Permit (IDP)?

Yes, to drive in Italy, you must have both a valid driver’s license from your home country and an International Driving Permit (IDP).

Are driving conditions on the Amalfi Coast roads difficult?

It can be difficult for some drivers to navigate the tiny, twisting, and even steep roads of the Amalfi Coast. However, the experience and visual beauty are well worth the work.

Leave a Comment

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *