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With the mountains of the Alps and the Dolomites to the north, the cones of Vesuvius, Stromboli and Etna to the south, wonderful lakes, glorious beaches and the rolling landscapes of its Tuscan heartland, Italy is stunningly beautiful. Once capital of the world’s most powerful empires, the country was the cradle of the Renaissance, is today the centre of the Christian faith, and has more UNESCO-listed culture sites than any other nation. It is therefore no surprise that Italy is one of Europe’s most popular holiday destinations.

 Italy can boast some of Europe’s most celebrated cities with a millennia of archaeological riches testament to the importance of the Romans, Etruscans and Ancient Greeks. Majestic public buildings, magnificent domed churches, striking cathedrals and Italy’s signature Leaning Tower are all part of an unrivalled architectural heritage. Epitomising the Renaissance, the works of Italian masters Michelangelo, Leonardo da Vinci, Raphael and Caravaggio adorn the country’s most notable chapels and grace its prestigious galleries.

 Italy’s waterways were once ancient trade routes used by early Mediterranean settlers and the Romans. Italians Christopher Columbus, Amerigo, Vespucci and Marco Polo are some of the greatest explorers of all time. Today, a leisurely river cruise on Italy’s beautiful canals, the Po River and unique island-studded Venetian Lagoon, is one of the best ways to explore a truly diverse landscape.

Tours recommended just for you

Italy Highlights

Italy is lauded for its beautiful scenery, Renaissance architecture and admirably sophisticated culture. It is one of Europe’s biggest, most influential countries, and attracts millions of visitors each year.  

Diverse cities such as Rome and Florence are brimming with art galleries and architectural masterpieces; from the Colosseum to the Cathedral of Santa Maria del Fiore, the breathtaking beauty of this culture-clad country will pull you back time and time again. Spectacular Sicily boasts mountainous landscapes dotted with historic wineries and ancient ruins, whilst dreamy destinations such as Lake Como and Portofino offer postcard-worthy scenery.  

From the sun-roasted countryside to awe-inspiring coastlines and opulent heritage sites, our rail trips ensure you see the best of Italy, taking in the landscapes from a unique perspective. If you’re looking to uncover the rich history and culture that encapsulates glorious Italia, join one of our Art Pursuits or Boxwood Gardens tours and enjoy a spectacular journey filled with memorable moments. 

Experiences just for you

Browse key sights and the popular tours you can see them on.

  • Take a cable car ride to the village of SoprbolzanoView Tour
  • Journey on the Mendola Funicular RailwayView Tour
  • Find Diano Marina's 11th-century castleView Tour
  • Visit the medieval village of CervoView Tour

Local Information

  • Capital Rome
  • Language Italian
  • Currency Euro
  • Tip Between 10%-15%
  • Time Zone Central European Summer Time
  • Electricity 2 pin European plug

Must See

Explore beautiful Roman towns and castles

View Tour

Key Information

Italy by rail

The boot-shaped nation that rests at the bottom of Europe can often be neglected when travelling – the shape of the country may tempt voyagers to transport via boat rather than over land, but the sun-roasted Italian countryside must not be missed. Our rail trips ensure that you see the best of it, and at a leisurely pace.

Fantastic cities

Italy’s diverse cities provide something for everyone. If you look carefully, you’re sure to find the perfect city to suit your desires. Perhaps it will be the art galleries of Florence that you love most of all. Or the Colosseum of Rome. Or perhaps it will be the languid beauty of Venice’s canals and the staggering opulence of its Piazza San Marco that will pull you back to Italy again and again.

Food and drink

If you’re a fan of rich cheeses and juicy tomatoes, Italian cuisine will melt your heart. Pizza and pasta are synonymous with Italy, but you can get just as much satisfaction from their plethora of national desserts, such as hazelnut chocolate, tiramisu and gelato (their rich, far superior ice cream) – all of which should be consumed by the bucket load when staying in glorious Italia.

Rich cultural history

Passion is exemplified by the Italians, whether in their emotional opera music, world-changing paintings, or sporting endeavours. Free-thinking Italians pioneered the Renaissance movement, both its architectural triumphs and contribution to the arts and science. Michelangelo’s St Peter's Basilica in the Vatican City is widely considered one of the finest architectural works in history, while his statue of David is still admired for its strikingly precise attention to detail. The statue now sits in the Galleria dell’Accademia in Florence.