If you are looking for unexpectedly romantic places in Italy for honeymoon, Valentine’s, anniversary, or weekend getaways, you came to the right place. This list of less touristy, yet most romantic places in Italy, is a collaboration with other travel bloggers to help you decide where to go for the perfect Italian romance.
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Verona is one of the most romantic places in Italy that you can visit. The setting for Shakespeare’s ultimate romantic tragedy, Romeo and Juliet (guided tour available here), Verona is the perfect place for a cozy couples’ weekend trip when looking for romantic places in Europe!
One of the fascinating things to do in Verona is to wander the Centro Storico streets, admiring the beautiful architecture and cobblestone alleys. While a visit to Juliet’s balcony for a photo is a must, there are pretty balconies in Verona no matter where you look! Some of them are decorated with greenery or even scented jasmine, making for the perfect romantic stroll.
Climb to the top of the Torre dei Lamberti for magnificent views over the rooftops of Verona. Or, cross the beautiful Ponte Pietra over the Adige River and take the funicular to the Castello San Pietro at the top of the hill, for fabulous views of the river and the city.
Verona’s main squares are lively and great for enjoying a drink or gelato as you people watch. At Piazza Bra, you can take in the gorgeous Roman Arena, and even attend a concert inside! The streets radiating from this square are great for shopping.
Verona has some must-visit restaurants: Saporè is excellent for pizza, and Santa Felicita not only has excellent food, but it is also inside an old church (now deconsecrated). For gelato, don’t miss L’Arte del Gelato!
By It’s Not About the Miles
Taormina belongs to one of the prettiest romantic places in Italy, located an hour’s drive away from Catania.
There are so many different things to do in Taormina that the list can get quite long. Therefore, make sure to have a romantic stroll in the main boulevard, Corso Umberto, holding hands and taking photos of beautiful churches, and venture away to any smaller streets for the real charm.
You also shouldn’t leave out the famous spot – the ancient Greek theater. It’s not only a monument of immense historical value, but it also provides magnificent views of the Ionian Sea. Find a quiet spot and enjoy the vistas together. The entrance fee is 10 Euros for adults.
Splashing around on a lovely beach is another fun activity to engage in with your sweetheart. Take a cable car down to the seaside area, skip the beautiful but small Mazzaro beach and walk to Isola Bella. The beach is terrific – whether you prefer renting a sun umbrella and getting a fancy drink, or if you’re happy just putting a towel down on the pebbles.
Don’t miss crossing over to the tiny Isola Bella island. There’s a small entrance fee (currently 4 Euros), but it’s well worth it. You can walk around the eerie house of a local merchant family who once lived there and admire the Isola Bella beach from another angle.
By Travel Geekery
Graciously lying on the southernmost point of the Italian boot, the region of Puglia is one of those lesser-known destinations which hides some of the most romantic places in Italy.
The small delicate historic city of Ginosa lies where Puglia meets Basilicata, no longer than an hour’s drive from Bari. Sea and ravines, meadows and cliffs, vineyards and olive plantations surround the area, making the perfect scenery combination for a relaxing honeymoon in Italy.
The size of Ginosa is a privilege as you can visit the sites and monuments by walking from a place to another, avoiding the hassle of busier cities, and allowing yourself to enjoy a smooth holiday.
Cave houses – casa grotta – embrace the city, which sprawl across the sides of the abyss in the area of Rione di Rivolta, called the Troglodyte Village. Another notable landmark is the Norman Castle, constructed in 1080, and the Chiesa Madre, a catholic church of the 16th century built in Madonna del Rosario’s honor. Among other notable sites are the many churches of the city decorated with frescoes from the Byzantine age.
Ginosa is also home to the famous artisan shirt maker Angelo Inglese, an acclaimed designer who has sewed apparel for Prince William and ex-President Donald Trump – pay a visit to the shop.
Ginosa is rich in restaurants and bars, which offer pleasant environments, and you can experience mouth-watering Italian food and local wine from vineyards of the region. Make sure to try the region’s spectacular red – Primitivo. The famous stone-oven bakeries of Ginosa are also something to bear in mind.
Although more hotels are located in the neighboring area of Ginosa, the few hotels in the center offer warm hospitality and luxurious experiences. Like the Albergo Diffuso Il Casale, few boutique hotels are tucked in the city’s narrow streets, hidden in cave-dwellings.
By Passion for Hospitality
Bologna is an absolutely stunning city! Its beauty and charm make the city a fabulous romantic place in Italy. Bologna’s pretty narrow streets are perfect for exploring with a loved one, along with the porticoes. Bologna is the city with the most arcades globally – and they definitely add to its romantic atmosphere!
A romantic getaway to this beautiful Italian city won’t be complete without the Bologna In Love Walking Tour. Designed specifically for couples, this 2 hours and a half long tour follows the love stories of young maidens and noble youths divided by warring families. You’ll see some of the most amorous spots around the city, so it’s one of the most romantic things to do in Italy.
Hike to San Luca – a church on a hill to enjoy beautiful views of the surrounding mountains. Just make sure to head there early in the morning or late in the afternoon. Bologna can be very hot, especially in the summer, so reaching the top of the hill all covered in sweat might not be the most romantic thing in the world.
Bologna is in the Emilia Romagna region, an area that produces 15% of Italian wine and has seen a steady increase in exports. With this in mind, it’s a must to include a trip to one of the nearby wineries on your romantic Italy getaway. Alternatively, you can do a wine bar hopping and try as many wines as possible.
By Owl Over The World
An amazing hidden gem and another romantic place in Italy is the tiny micro-country (and city) of San Marino. It boasts breathtaking views of the Italian countryside while being home to an impressive castle. Travel to San Marino for an idyllic honeymoon in Italy and break away from the crowds of the famous cities in Italy.
Renting a car from Venice or Bologna is the most convenient way to visit. You can drive right to the top of the mountain – just be careful with hairpin turns. Before climbing up the hill, stop at the Visitor’s Center for a stamp in your passport. Not many people can say they have visited the oldest country in the world!
The first thing you’ll notice about San Marino is the towering castle on the peak of Monte Titano. There are three towers to explore, dating back to the 11th century! The First Tower, Guaita is the oldest (and most famous) tower. The Second Tower, Cesta, is on the highest peak and is home to a museum holding over 1500 weapons dating back to the Medieval Era. The Montale, the third tower, is on the smallest summit and, unfortunately, not open to the public.
There are also plenty of museums to intrigue you. The National Museum dives into the rich history of San Marino, the beautiful Basilica de San Marino is a step back in time, or for travelers who prefer more unusual items – visit the Torture Museum.
For a delicious hand-tossed fire-grilled pizza – head to Ristorante II Beccafico. Enjoy local wine while taking in the views of the Italian countryside.
By Directionally Challenged Traveler
Noto is a little city on the Southeastern coast of Sicily in the Syracuse province. The little town is sleepy in the winter but absolutely brimming with couples in the summer. The city holds Sicily’s baroque capital title and has many swoon-worthy buildings dotted across the small streets. It has even received a UNESCO World Heritage Site title.
The town is relatively small, so you can take a leisurely walk down the towns’ two main arteries – Corso Vittorio Emanuele and Via Cavour. When walking through the streets, make sure to turn your gaze upwards. Beautifully carved stuccos adorn the balconies and façades of most buildings. Make sure to visit the Noto Cathedral, Palazzo Ducezio, and the Palazzo Castello to get a good feel of Sicilian architecture.
After an afternoon of strolling around, you might like to take a little break and satisfy your sweet tooth. There is one particular spot that you might want to try. Noto is well known for its almonds and more specifically for the Almond Granita – it was even featured on the Netflix show Chef’s table and is one of the must-try regional specialties.
Head over to Caffe Siciliano, right opposite the main basilica, to try the most delicious granite of your life for a mere 2,5 Euros. The portions are not huge, so perhaps you and your love want to skip sharing this one and order two pieces!
By Veggie Wayfarer
Polignano a Mare
Polignano a Mare is another hidden gem that makes a perfect destination for your honeymoon in Italy. Most tourists never get to this part of Italy, in beautiful Puglia. Polignano a Mare is about 30 minutes south of Bari. It sits perched on high cliffs above the Adriatic Sea, and it is one of the most romantic places in Italy.
It’s an old town, first founded by the Greeks and later developed under the Roman Empire. Via Traiana (ancient Roman road) passed through ancient Polignano a Mare, and you can still see a Roman bridge behind Lama Monachile. The old town is very charming with old churches, white-washed houses, a maze of narrow streets, and quaint balconies.
Polignano a Mare is a perfect place to spend a romantic weekend, honeymoon, or anniversary. Wherever you are in the old town, you are minutes away from one of the panoramic terraces and some fantastic coastline views. Taking a cruise along the coast to visit some of its caves adds an adventure to your days here.
Lama Monachile is an incredible pebbled beach, tucked away between the limestone cliffs, just under the old town. It’s a romantic spot where you can take a lot of beautiful pictures.
Another place you might want to visit is the Grotta Pallazzese Restaurant. It has the most fantastic location in a cave above the sea and under the old town. It isn’t a cheap restaurant, but the setting is unique and perfect for a romantic evening.
In the small piazzas, the locals and Italian tourists stop in cute coffee shops, small bars, and family restaurants. Time here slows down, so enjoy a taste of La Dolce Vita.
By Travel for a while
Cagliari, the capital of Sardinia, is often overlooked for more famous romantic cities in Italy. It’s a pity because it’s the perfect city for a quick weekend break, as a base to explore southern Sardinia, and as romantic getaways in Italy. Whatever kind of trip you are on, you will undoubtedly find many great things to do in Cagliari.
The city is packed with beautiful archeological sites; churches and well-curated museums; narrow alleys, airy plazas, and colorful buildings. You can easily reach several beaches from the center – Poetto is a locals’ favorite and a great place for a sunset walk and an evening drink.
Yet, what makes Cagliari strike out for romance compared to other cities is the vistas you can get from many places in the city. The best sunset spot – the one you should keep for a proposal or renewing your vows – is by far Via Santa Croce’s terrace in the historic quarter of Castello. The view over Stampace historic quarter and the Sette Fratelli mountains in the back is breathtaking.
When sunset is over, pop into Libarium, right on the terrace, for one of the best cocktails in Cagliari – then walk to La Marina or Stampace for a lovely dinner in one of the many excellent restaurants. For a perfect romantic setting, opt to stay at Villa Fanny – just outside the historical center, close to the Botanical Gardens, located in a historic building and features cozy rooms with beautiful decor.
By Strictly Sardinia