Semana Santa in Italy: Rome, Florence, Venice, Naples and the Amalfi Coast

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Authored By:

Katie M.

I’ve been wanting to travel to Italy for a long time, so as soon as I decided to teach in Spain it was already a foregone conclusion that I was going to Italy for spring break. Because it’s been my dream vacation for so long, we went all in on this trip: we went to Rome and the Vatican, Florence, Venice, Naples and the Amalfi Coast over the span of nine days. Italy definitely lived up to the hype, especially the food. I’m going to share what we did, and perhaps it will inspire you to make a similar trip or give you ideas for weekend trips to these cities!

Rome/The Vatican

We spent three days in Rome, which I would say is the perfect amount of time to see both Rome and the Vatican. There is so much history and so much going on in Rome that just by wandering the streets, you will bump into various historical and noteworthy sites. In Rome, you can’t miss the Colosseum, Trevi Fountain, Spanish Steps and Roman Forum, and in the Vatican, Saint Peter’s Square and Basilica. I’d also recommend doing a cooking class at some point in Italy; we did one in Rome and made our own pasta and tiramisu!  


Florence is slower-paced than Rome, but absolutely beautiful, and the ideal city for art lovers. I’d recommend spending two days there. The top sites to see are the Cathedral of Santa Maria and Giotto’s Campanile, Vecchio Bridge and the Galleria dell'Accademia (home of the David statue). My number one recommendation for Florence, however, is the Piazzale Michelangelo, a plaza located on a hill overlooking the city. Climb up there to watch the sunset one night during your stay!


We did just a day trip to Venice, from Florence, and one day was perfect to see the city. There aren't a ton of things to do in Venice, but the city is so beautiful and so unique that it’s a can’t-miss for any trip to Italy. Everywhere I looked I wanted to take another picture. The one thing you have to do is a gondola ride on the Grand Canal, Venice’s biggest canal! I’d also recommend seeing the Rialto Bridge and Saint Mark’s Basilica, Campanile and Square on your day in Venice. 


We spent two days in Naples, the pizza capital of the world. My main takeaway from Naples was just how good the pizza is; I ate pizza every day of the trip (so I had a big sample size) and my two favorites were in Naples. We even ate at a Michelin Star pizza restaurant, Gino Sorbillo's! Tip: go for simple pizzas with minimal toppings so you can really taste the crust, sauce and cheese. As for what to do in Naples, Mount Vesuvius and the ancient ruins of Pompeii and Herculaneum are right nearby. 

Amalfi Coast

We made a day trip to the Amalfi Coast from Naples with a tour service, and it was the unanimous favorite place we visited and day of the entire trip. The tour took us to the coastal towns of Sorrento, Positano and Amalfi, where we got to spend an hour each, plus another hour for a group lunch. I can confirm that the Amalfi Coast is as beautiful as everyone says it is, and even more beautiful in person than it is in photos. We spent our time in each town taking in the unreal views, splashing around in the water and trying local food and drink.

I’m hoping that this post serves as inspiration for future travels to Italy. Despite just spending nine days there, there is more of the country I want to see and I’m already planning a second trip! If you’ve never been before, Italy is a must for your time in Europe, whether you make an extended trip there or just go to a city or two for a long weekend.