GETTING AROUND ITALY
Travel to Italy
There are infinite itineraries and tours that allow visitors to explore Italy, a unique country known worldwide for the variety of its landscapes where you can admire the sea, mountains, hills and valleys. There are also various ways to move around the country in close contact with the warmth, friendliness and hospitality of locals.
Whether by car, train, camper, coach, boat, scooter or bike, visitors can explore the main cities, travelling in between them, or leave the typical touristic routes and visit the off the beaten track towns and villages to find the true heart of the Italian lifestyle. All the main cities are connected with frequent daily flights. The rail network is spread over more than 10,000 miles, offering uniform coverage throughout Italy. The dense network of motorways, dual carriageways and trunk roads, enable visitors to reach any location in the country by car or motorbike.
How to get thereThe rules for travelling or working in European countries changed on 1 January 2021:
- UK British passport holders can travel to countries in the Schengen area (which includes Italy) for up to 90 days in any 180-day period without a visa. This applies if you travel as a tourist, to visit family or friends, to attend business meetings, cultural or sports events, or for short-term studies or training.
- To stay longer, to work or study, for business travel or for other reasons, you will need to meet the Italian government’s entry requirements. Check with the Italian Embassy what type of visa and/or work permit you may need.
- Check your passport is valid for travel before you book your trip, and renew your passport if you do not have enough time left on it.
- You must have at least 6 months left on an adult or child passport to travel to Italy.
The main airports for intercontinental and international arrivals are the Leonardo da Vinci airport in Rome Fiumicino, Malpensa in Milan and Marco Polo in Venice, but there are many other international airports located across the country. There are also plenty of domestic connections with frequent services from Rome-Fiumicino and Milan-Malpensa to all the other airports in Italy, making it simple and convenient to reach the islands of Sicily, Sardinia or the smaller ones from the mainland.
There are almost 40 small and medium-sized airports, covering every region except for the regions of Molise and Basilicata. All the airports are serviced by a network of taxis, buses and trains, which allow commuters to reach any final destination with ease.
Cruise and ships
For sea lovers, it is possible to reach Italy by ship. There are many national and international passenger ship and ferry companies connecting the main ports on the Mediterranean Sea to Italy. Ticket prices may vary depending on the weight of the passenger’s vehicle loaded and the time of the year. For example, the Grandi Navi Veloci fleet, for example, sails between Barcelona in Spain and Genoa.
Sea links between Greece and Italy are guaranteed on the busiest routes: from Igoumenitsa, Corfu and Patras, Superfast Ferries sail directly to Venice, Bari and Ancona. Fragline Ferries sail from Corfu to Brindisi; Grimaldi Ferries, one of the best-known Italian companies, links Tunis and Barcelona with Civitavecchia, Salerno, Livorno and Palermo. Tirrenia Navigazione ferries operate numerous services throughout the year between Tunis and the major Italian islands, Sicily and Sardinia.
Besides, Jadrolinija runs from Dubrovnik and Split, on the Croatian coast, to Bari and Ancona, while Virtu Ferries is the best option to travel between Malta and Catania in Sicily.
The Italian high-speed rail network facilitates moving easily throughout the country and to reach various Italian cities comfortably in just a few hours, taking advantage of numerous on-board services such as free Wi-Fi, catering services, assistance for the disabled, unaccompanied children’s service and, pet and bicycle transport.
It’s easy to plan tourism or business trips by choosing among more than 300 daily connections available from the two companies which operate in Italy: Trenitalia and ItaloTreno. These two companies reach a hundred cities and almost two thousand train stations, bringing the tourists to the heart of the art cities, to the lake region, the mountain villages or the coastal towns.
Tickets can be purchased online from the websites of the two companies or at the ticket offices of the railway stations.
Motorways and roads
Italians drive on the right and overtake on the left. Italy has a fine network of motorways, named Autostrade. There is also a good network of state roads called StradeStatali. The secondary roads, Strade provinciali, will take you into the Italian countryside.
Speed limits are as follows (unless otherwise displayed):
- Motorway 130 km/h
- Highway 110 km/h
- Major Roads 90 km/h
- Towns / Cities 50 km/h
To drive in Italy British drivers will need to obtain an International driving licence.
Travelling enriches your life, knowledge and personal development, giving you the chance to connect with people from different cultures and backgrounds. For all of these reasons, it is essential to grant access to tourist experiences to all citizens, regardless of their personal, social and economic conditions, which could limit such experiences.
This is why Italy actively and constantly works to reduce all the architectural, cultural and sensory barriers, to allow everyone, including people with disabilities, to enjoy a trip to Italy.
Discover the county by bike
Cycling enables visitors to reach fascinating places, whether located on a mountain range, countryside or urban scene. This form of tourism represents an alternative to the traditional way of exploring the country making it more sustainable and eco-friendly. Of course, it requires particular physical preparation and route planning, but the emotional rewards are worth the extra effort.
Bicycles are easy to transport, have a low environmental impact, and offer freedom and autonomy, thus making travel on two wheels extremely suited to discovering otherwise inaccessible sites in Italy: for instance, parks and nature reserves.
Bike-hotels can also be found here, offering not only lodging but help and suggestions regarding cultural and gastronomic itineraries for cycle tours.