If you’re looking for the most convenient way to spend 10 days in Italy, visiting all of the major tourist destinations then you should definitely consider purchasing a Eurail Italy or Global Pass. Since we were traveling to Germany and Switzerland prior to visiting Italy, the Global pass was the best option for us. This 10 day Italy itinerary by train will take you to Venice, Florence, the Amalfi Coast, and Rome. We would have loved to add a couple of nights in Milan to our Italy itinerary, but we just didn’t have enough time.
Eurail is a company that sells passes for Europe’s various rail lines. Since each country has its own rail company, you can streamline your planning and travel by purchasing a Eurail pass. We purchased a Eurail Global Pass, which allows travel through 31 countries in Europe. If you only plan on visiting one country, then you’re better off purchasing a Eurail One Country Pass. You can get an Italy pass that is good for 8 travel days within one month for less than $250. One thing to note that if you’re traveling on Italy’s high-speed Frecciarossa trains, you will need an advanced seat reservation, but Eurail allows you to book reservations both online and through their mobile application.
Like I said above we spent a couple of nights in both Munich and Interlaken before starting our 10 days in Italy Itinerary. So our journey began in Interlaken where we took the train through Milan to Venice. However, if you are traveling to Italy from the United States you will likely be flying into Rome, Florence or Milan. The three major US airlines do all offer seasonal service to Venice. This itinerary will serve as an introduction to these amazing Italian cities because there is no way to see everything they have to offer with just 2 days in each city.
One of the most unique places I’ve ever been to, spending 2 days in Venice is perfect for exploring the narrow streets and canals. In recent years, Venice has been plagued by flooding and over-tourism, but no Italy itinerary would be complete without spending a couple of days in Venice.
There are a ton of beautiful hotels in Venice, but one thing to keep in mind when deciding where to stay in Venice is Venice doesn’t have any cars, and the private water taxis are quite expensive, so when choosing a hotel in Venice you might want to find a hotel near Saint Mark’s Square or the Rialto Bridge. You can read my whole review of the St. Regis Venice here.
The best way to see Venice is just walking through the narrow labyrinth of cobbled streets and canals. We spent about half a day just wandering through the streets without a destination. The top sights to see in Venice include St. Mark’s Basilica and Campanile, Doge’s Palace, the bridge of sighs, and Ponte Rialto. If you plan on visiting St. Mark’s or Doge’s Palace, I highly recommend getting there early, or booking a skip the line tour in advance. We didn’t book anything in advance, so we went to St. Mark’s Square first thing in the morning. The Campanile opened at about 8 and the Basilica at 9, so we were able to see both before it got too crowded, and had plenty of time to explore the rest of the city. I would also suggest booking a tour to visit the islands of Murano and Burano. Murano is famous for its glass, and Burano is famous for its colorful buildings.
Some of the best food we had during our 10 days in Italy was away from the main tourist hubs of Venice. The restaurant inside the St. Regis was fantastic for drinks and dinner. During our random wandering, we found a hidden gem just a short walk from Ponte Rialto. I can’t remember where we had lunch, but we had some amazing pizza. For dinner that night we were out exploring and found Ristorante Al Colombo. They have a huge outdoor dining area and the service was top-notch. If you are trying to decide where to eat in Venice, I’d recommend either talking to the concierge at your hotel or just following your nose.
We really enjoyed taking high-speed trains through Italy. The second stop on our 10 day Italy Itinerary is Florence. Taking the train Venice to Florence was a quick two and a half hour ride. We left Venice at about 1 PM, so we got to Florence just before 4 PM.
The legacy the renaissance left on Florence is evident everywhere you look. From the beautiful architecture (in my opinion probably the most beautiful in all of Italy) to the museums full of art by masters like Da Vinci, Michaelangelo, and Brunelleschi. A trip to Florence isn’t complete without seeing Michaelangelo’s David and the Cupola of Duomo di Santa Maria del Fiore. Florence is a very easy city to navigate on feet, its not quite as confusing as Venice, and there isn’t nearly as much traffic as Rome. I’d recommend walking around the city, but you should also get out of Florence into the rolling hills of Tuscany. We had an amazing time on this half-day wine tour to two vineyards and the medieval town of Monteriggioni. You can read my full two-day Florence Itinerary here.
The third stop on this 10 day Italy Itinerary by train was Positano. Positano is a little town on the Amalfi Coast, so our best option was the Florence to Naples train. After the 3-hour train ride, we arrived in Naples where we were greeted by a driver to our amazing Positano Hotel, Le Sirenuse. Just outside of Naples is the famous Pompeii Archeological site where the entire community was buried under a thick layer of ash when Mt. Vesuvius erupted in 79 AD. Our driver said that a few hours there is enough to see a lot of the site, so you can plan to stop on the way out or return from the Amalfi Coast. You can also get some amazing views from the top of Mt. Vesuvius with this guided tour from Naples.
There aren’t too many places in the world that have left me speechless like Positano. The cliffside town is one of the most beautiful places in Italy and has to be on everybody’s bucket list. But Positano isn’t the only beautiful town on the Amalfi Coast before you leave you should definitely check out Amalfi, Ravello, and the island of Capri. The drive from Naples to Positano is very scenic and it continues all the way to the town of Salerno, making this coastline driving tour a great way to see the Amalfi Coast. I grew up on the water, so the only thing I wanted to do while we were visiting Positano was a boat tour of the coast, but unfortunately, I didn’t plan it in advance, so when we went to book a tour they were completely sold out. Even if you don’t have a chance to stay at Le Sirenuse in Positano, you should try and visit the terrace at Aldo’s bar and restaurant for aperitivos and sunset because it has arguably the best view in all of Positano!
After a couple of amazing nights at the most famous hotel on the Amalfi Coast, we caught a high-speed train from Naples to Rome for the final stop on our 10 days in Italy Itinerary by train. The ride from Naples to Rome is only about an hour and twenty minutes, so we arrived in Rome with plenty of time to do a little exploring scouting out hole in the wall restaurants for our next great meal.
We spent three days exploring Rome. There is so much history in Rome, there aren’t too many places in the world where you can walk down the street and come across a building from 2000 years ago. We did the normal touristy things like visiting the Vatican and going through the colosseum, but walking through the neighborhoods near the Trevi Fountain and Spanish Steps was my favorite part of our stay in Rome. We even found a really cute super affordable restaurant just a couple of blocks from the Spanish Steps called Ristorante Al 34 where we met our friends from Pennsylvania for dinner one night. You can read my full three-day Rome itinerary here!
There is so much to see in Italy that this 10 Days in Italy Itinerary by train barely scratches the surface. We didn’t get to see the beautiful Dolomites in the North, or Milan, or Cinque Terre, or Calabria where Mallory’s family is from, but 10 days is a good amount of time to see 3-4 Italian cities. I would love to go back and just spend a week in Tuscany tasting wine, eating amazing food, and possibly taking a day trip or two the surrounding towns. I hope this 10 day Italy itinerary has inspired you to book a trip to Italy! You can search for flights to Italy here. If you live near New York, you can actually fly Emirates First Class from JFK to Milan!