Our trip started in Rome, then on to Lucca in Toscany and lake Como and a flight back from Milano. Throughout the trip we stayed at Airbnb apartments, where we also had our breakfasts. Our Rome apartment was at an excellent location near the Campo de Fiori market, although it wasn’t as good as the other two we booked, which we liked a lot.
Italy trip itinerary
Rome 4 days
Day 1 – Rome
Free walking tour of the city with Romes Ultimate. The guide was excellent and told stories in an interesting, humoristic fashion. The company’s tours are for small groups of up to 15 people – which is quite important, as larger tours make asking questions difficult and the guides tend to be less attentive to each individual member.
Lunch at local Italian pasta restaurant, Pasta Imperiale. We passed by this restaurant during our tour and the guide spoke of it with very high regard. He claimed it was a cheap and excellent place for pasta. We went back when the tour was done. It offers a variety of pastas and sauces to mix and match from.
Piazza Navona – Our favourite piazza in Rome.
Tasty ice-cream at Venchi. The wait in line was somewhat long, but we decided to stick it out and it was definitely worth the wait. I had caramel ice-cream in a chocolate and almond coated cone, while Roman had a strawberry-mango sorbet in his.
Local dinner through Like a Local website. A full course dinner with wine at the hostess’ house. Great local meal at a lovely home.
Day 2 Rome
Visit to the pantheon and a a visit in the bone church Santa Maria della Concezione dei Cappuccini church. The church holds more than 4000 bones and skulls of Cuppuccini order monks. I didn’t know what to expect, and honestly it was a bit unnerving, but also curious to see all the bones and what was done with them.
Campo de Fiori market. This market is extremely charming. It isn’t swamped with people, full of stalls of all kinds, colorful and offers many tasty treats.
Pasta Carbonara for lunch and Mercato Hostaria restaurant, near the market or pizza at Forno Campo De Fiori.
A walk through the alleys surrounding the market area
A standing café, Roscioli caffe, near the market. This is a very popular café near campo de Fiori. If you need to recharge with a quick coffee and a sweet dessert along the way, this is the place to visit. Address
Via Plauto, 33, 00193 Roma Italy.
Vatican in the evening – We booked entry tickets ahead of time online. The entrance was 16 euros, 7 euros for audio guides and an additional 4 for booking online. The Vatican is one of the must-see places in Rome, But I’d like to introduce an option you might not have known existed. From the end of April through to the end of October, every Friday, you may visit the Vatican during the evening hours instead of in the morning. We were lucky enough to be there on the first Friday available and were very pleased with this option.
Cheese and wine at Makasar bar. The waitress was very nice, and the place was quiet, with good music. The cheese and wine were excellent and the design lovely.
Day 3 Rome
Visit to rose garden. There are benches along the stairs overlooking both the garden and the city. You can sit and enjoy the beauty or even have a little picnic on the bench.
Visit to an orange garden, around a ten-minute walk from the rose garden. It’s not as impressive, but also very beautiful and offers a pretty view of the city.
Martin Gallery and café – A new, recently opened coffee house, full of brightly colored paintings. The silverware and vases are all covered in paintings as well. Address Via dei Cerchi 55A.
Trattoria Da Enzo – Local restaurant with great Ricotta. Address Via dei Vascellari, 29, 00153 Roma, Italy.
Colosseum and Palatine Hill – The whole area is magnificent. It’s ginormous, full of ruins and unique buildings. Even the gate by the Colosseum is one of the most impressive I’ve ever seen. Definitely worth dedicating a couple of hours to walking around in this area.
Dinner at Casa Savoia, prestigious restaurant. Roman took me to this restaurant as a birthday surprise. I fell in love with it the moment we arrived. It sports a beautiful, luxurious design. Address Vicolo del Gallo, 14, 00186 Roma, Italy.
Jerry Thomas Speakeasy cocktail bar – The atmosphere at the bar is really cool, the waiters and bartenders are dressed in 20’s outfits, and the whole bar is vintage and uniquely stylized. Address
Vicolo Cellini, 30, 00186 Roma, Italy.
Day 4 Rome and Lucca
Shopping for Cheeses, breads and more at Campo de Fiori market.
Collecting a vehicle from rental company. We rented it through Rentalcars’ website.
Drive to Lucca – An about 4.5-hour drive with a stop for a picnic and gas station coffee 🙂
Cheese picnic break
Arrival at Lucca in the evening, to a lovely Airbnb apartment.
Shopping at a nearby supermarket
Dinner at the apartment.
Day 5 – Lucca and the area
Drive to a vineyard for a tour and wine tastings, followed up with a drive to Monte Carlo. Stroll through town and pizza for lunch, then a visit to an impressive castle.
Post I wrote about our experience of the town and vineyard.
Return to Lucca and dinner at the excellent Ristorante Cantine Bernardini Lucca. I highly recommend this restaurant, it was one of the best we visited during our trip by a significant margin. Address Via del Suffragio, 7, 55100 Lucca LU, Italy
Day 6 – Lucca
Coffee and pastry at Bottega del Caffe Dersut.
Climb up the clock tower for a vantage of the city. It takes climbing some steps to reach the top, but not too many.
Bike rental from “Tuscany ride a bike” store. Ride along the walls and in the city.
Quick pizza lunch.
Walk around the city.
Dinner at a nice restaurant, Osteria Da Rosolo Lucca. The prices were low and the dishes very tasty. Address Corte Campana, 3, 55100 Lucca LU, Italy
Day 7- Drive to Lake Como
Drive to lake Como – a 4-hour drive with two stops, one for coffee and one for a sandwich at gas station along the way.
Arrival at a stunning Airbnb apartment in the town of Dervio.
Dinner by the lake at Bar Ristorante Pizzeria Le vele. Address Via lungo lago degli ulivi 6, 23824 Dervio LC, Italy
Day 8 – A walking trek
A walking trek – The track starts of relatively planar with a few ups and downs, an offers a beautiful view of the lake. We passed by small villages and enjoyed the walk. At some point we began a climb and understood that’s how it was going to be the rest of the way. The track is an orderly path between forests and villages. There are markings all along it, so you can’t get lost. The trek we did was “B”.
Dinner at an amazing Restaurant, Osteria Quatro Pass. The best meal we had during our trip. Every dish was an absolute winner. Address Via XX Settembre, 20, 23829 Varenna LC
Day 9 – Bellagio
Detailed post about our day at Bellagio.
Drive to Varenna, a ferry to Bellagio and then a visit to Villa Meltzi and pasta lunch at Bar Caffe Rossi. I had spaghetti Bolognese and Roman had pasta with spinach and cheese. Both were really good and reasonably priced. As far as we saw, the coffee and cakes they had looked good. Address 22, Piazza Giuseppe Mazzini
Visit to lovely fishing village and a walk around town. Following a long walk, it was time for wine, cheese and fish tasting at a wine bar.
Back to the ferry to Varenna and the apartment.
Day 10 – Bellano and flight home
Detailed post on half-day at Bellano.
Drive to Bellano, coffee by the lake and then a visit to the Orrido di Bellano gorge.
A sandwich from a deli for lunch.
Drive to Milano airport (1.5 hours), returning the rental car at the airport and flight back.
End of trip in Italy.