Italy tailor-made holidays
Given that the Italian peninsula was only fully unified in 1871, it’s no surprise that its draws are richly varied. The country’s appreciation of the arts ranges from the opera theatre to the trattoria kitchen while Roman ruins sit alongside pretty medieval villages only to have their grandeur recalled by Renaissance flourishes.
Even its geography is undecided. The cloud-piercing Alps spill down to the glassy serenity of the Northern Lakes before an Apennine bump sees you into Tuscany and Umbria’s rural idyll of vineyards and picturesque farmlands. It’s all lined with an impressive coastline where Amalfi’s Crayola-coloured villages cling to dramatic cliffs and the beaches of Puglia and Tuscany vie for attention. They’re the perfect piers to discovering the equally eclectic beauty of the Italian islands. There’s paradisiacal Elba, the Aeolians’ wild volcanicity, Sardinian adventures among hidden ruins and, of course, Sicily. Here, lemon trees perfume everything from pretty bays and volcanic foothills to Byzantine cathedrals and whole valleys of forgotten Greek temples.
It’s all punctuated by some of the world’s most arresting cities, each with their own discrete charm. Florence gave the world the Renaissance, Venice stands – or floats – unique and Rome bears all the grandeur befitting a host of ancient, continent-conquering empires and the world’s most powerful – and largest – religious denomination. But if there’s one thing that the country’s 20 distinct regions share, it’s a heartfelt passion for la dolce vita – ‘the sweet life’. Whether it’s fine wines and world-influencing cuisine or the Sistine Chapel’s frescoes and Michelangelo’s living marble, Italy’s artistry knows no bounds.
To begin planning your next holiday to Italy, browse our suggested itineraries. From tailor-made fly-drives to city breaks, beach holidays and luxury rail journeys, they've all been tried, tested and enjoyed by our Italy specialists who visit the country regularly.
At a glanceSee Italy travel guide
Special offers in Italy
Stay 3 nights and pay for 2 discount – Save up to £110 pp
Book by: 31 December 2018
This 15th century private palazzo is a favourite among discerning travellers and Condé Nast’s judges alike.
Long Stay Promotion – Save up to £40 pp
Book by: 31 December 2018
A repurposed medieval church complete with a Byzantine tower façade, this is one of Florence’s most atmospheric stays and is listed in the city’s register of historical edifices.
Stay 4 nights, pay 3 – Save up to £130 pp
Book by: 30 November 2018
The Baglioni Hotel Cala del Porto, with its Mediterranean fine dining and indulgent spa, looks out across the bay of Punta Ala to the island of Elba in the distance. The hotel is just a stroll from a private sandy beach replete with pagoda-shaped cabins, sun loungers and deck chairs.
Stay 5 pay 4 discount – Save up to £260 pp
Book by: 10 November 2019
Enjoy the ultimate Tuscany experience, step back in time with this idyllic Tuscan countryside stay. Here, a medieval castle looks out heritage vineyards and traditional restaurants dish up fine dining evenings.
Top itineraries in Italy
With the flexibility to explore at your own pace, link Sicily’s highlights with spectacularly rural drives and stays in some of the island’s premier hotels. You’ll take in everything from Cefalù’s white-sand beaches to Agrigento’s temple wonders and Taormina's ancient grandeur.
Sicily's rich past has given rise to a uniquely contrasting history and it's a similar story when it comes to its food and wine. You’ll take it all in with stays in boutique properties and pretty country drives, with the island’s famous gastronomy showcased in wine tastings and open-kitchen dining.
Let stays in world-class hotels and the services of private drivers showcase the best of Capri’s island paradise, the Amalfi Coast’s dramatic beauty and Sorrento’s clifftop views. In between, there's plenty of time for some beach-side relaxation and independent exploration.
What our clients say about our Italy holidays
To meet my requirements, your agent Miranda had to fit in with a previous tour's flight plans and I was delighted with the hotel selected in Taormina, the Excelsior Palace Hotel was a step back in time with old world courtesy and excellent service. A night in Bari was added to fit in with flights and the hotel there was exceptional too but in such a different way as it was modern Italian design in its rooms and public places and really lovely to find in Bari. The hotel was on the seafront with easy access to the old town and was called the Grande Albergo delle Nazioni and part of a chain. I would love a stay in any other Italian City with this group as I found the hotel stunning.
We had a fantastic time thank you very much for all the help and advice. We would particularly like you to pass on our thanks to Miranda Berliand for making it all happen and for her excellent recommendations. We particularly enjoyed the long established family run, so tastefully decorated over the years, Hotel Poseidon in Possitano... they put on one of the breakfasts in the world! What impressed us so much was the effortless and smooth transitions at all stages of the trip. It was for us first time visitors to this magical part of Italy made all the better by your attention to detail. Faultless!
Excellent service and very good responses to the few questions I had about arrangements. Staff always got back to me with the required information either the same day or the day after. Changes that I wished to make regarding hotels were dealt with quickly and efficiently. Travel arrangements worked out perfectly and hotels were of the highest standard. A good service all round. Many thanks to the whole team.
I have booked through Wexas Travel for business and holidays for many years and have always found the service to be excellent and will continue to book through Wexas.
A special thank you to Bert Hyatt for the last two years bookings to Italy and Madeira, always helpful with excellent knowledge of all aspects of travel and hotels.
As always Wexas provided us with a superb itinerary with informative guides. The hotels were exactly the standard we had requested and Miranda was very helpful in helping us find suitable dates, flights etc. We will certainly be using Wexas again in the future.
Since I had no knowledge of the destination we were seeking I had to trust the Wexas team entirely. As before we had no need to worry: the advice and arrangements were exactly what we needed.
W B W
As always Tim Tan came up with the goods. Good hotels and the transfer arrangements throughout the holiday were superb. Recommend that you look no further for a travel expert.
Peter Charles P
Thank you for organising a very enjoyable holiday in a first class hotel. Accommodation and transfers were excellent. We both enjoyed the experience.
Excellent contact with Allison Nicolle of Wexas who kept us up to date with changes to flights and schedules. Thew service received was first class.
Each time we go away the comments are the same. Excellent and professional service. it is the reason why we keep using Wexas. Long may it remain so.
Stephen Conrad S
One of the best things about Wexas is that we have one agent (Tim Tan) who always looked after us and does so extremely well
Anthony W A
I have used wexas a number of times and most recently dealt with Tim Tan and have always been delighted with the results
Thank you to Bert at Wexas Travel for going that extra mile ........so important to feel a valued customer.
Amy did a really fantastic job, and managed to get us a room I had not been able to book myself
As usual Tim Tan provided us with excellent service and very knowledgeable recommendations.
Top places to stay in Italy
The perfect base in central Rome. It’s all immaculately presented in a delightful Art Deco style, and has gained its first Michelin Star in 2017 for its Magnolia restaurant.
Located on the central Via Veneto, moments from Villa Borghese, Piazza di Spagna and Via Condotti, the 5-star Baglioni Hotel Regina is supremely well situated.
Located in the heart of rural Tuscany and within reach of the historical centres of Florence, Siena, Arezzo and Perugia, Lupaia occupies a lovingly restored farmhouse that oozes character and charm.
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Where to go in Italy
The Venice Simplon-Orient-Express is iconic for its luxury journeys that exude timeless elegance, remaining unchanged for decades. Guests are transported to a time more refined, enjoying the finest service, opulent bars and three exquisite restaurants as they travel to Europe's most romantic cities.
The Amalfi Coast stretches along the Sorrentine Peninsula in the south of Italy and is famous for its tantalising combination of historical cathedrals, grottoes and ancient villas, fine Neapolitan cuisine and the outstanding natural beauty of its scenery.
Sicily's long history as Italy's independent-minded island gives it allure matched only by it's ancient landmarks, sun-drenched beaches and cobbled lanes filled with tempting meals and boisterous Sicilian conversation.
When to go to Italy
Generally speaking, the best time to visit Italy is between April and June or September and October. These shoulder seasons avoid the crowds along with the worst of the heat – Sicily has been known to reach the mid forties. In fact, given its favourable latitude, you can expect favourable temperatures year round with southern waters warm enough to swim even outside the May to September period. That said, winter will see snowfall in the north, with ski resorts opening up.
Italy specialist Victoria Jusko has collated this list of Italy’s ultimate driving holidays. And, along with the highlights of Tuscany and the Amalfi Coast, there are plenty of secrets to discover, too.
From the vineyard lined shores of Garda to the glamorous towns of Como, discover why so many are fawning after an Italian Lake getaway this year.
Ronan Gay visits Therasia Resort and Spa based on Vulcano in Sicily, and provides a first-hand account of his experience.
The art, music, food and festivals that have helped make Italy one of the world's most enduring holiday destinations. Read our guide to living the sweet life, and how to make the most of this beautiful country.
Meet our Italy experts
Speak to a tailor-made specialist on 020 7590 0796