Italy is one amazing place to visit and I had the pleasure of going there for almost two weeks in October. There are a ton of details to this trip so I will break it down to the need-to-know information since my boyfriend and I visited so many locations and did so much.
We decided to fly out of O’Hare the last week in October. We flew Aer Lingus to Dublin, Ireland then to Milan, Italy. They flights were $620 round trip per person. We also choose October-November to travel to Italy because the flights were cheaper and considered off season for tourists.
Where to stay in Milan
(Day 1) Holiday Inn Milan, Linate Airport, Via Bruno Buozzi, 2, 20068 Peschiera Borromeo MI, Italy
We choose this location because they have a shuttle to and from the airport therefore we stayed here on our first and last day to ensure a ride to the airport. It was about $90/night
What to do in Milan
We took the shuttle from the airport to the hotel, checked in, and talked to the front desk about how to get to the magnificent Duomo. The easiest way was to return to the airport and take a bus to the city center.
At the city center there are amazing shopping opportunities and tons of stores. The Duomo was just outside those shopping centers and is open to the public at all times. There are a ton of places to eat as well.
Train to Naples
(Day 2) We took a taxi to the train station, and purchased tickets to Naples from a kiosk. To check times and days the train leaves you can use ItaliaRail.
- This train ride was 4 hours, so be prepared. Think about upgrading the economy ticket because economy tickets do not include wifi.
Where we stayed in Naples
Hotel Ideal, Piazza Garibaldi 99, Central Station Naples, 80142, Italy
We picked Hotel Ideal , due to its close proximity to the train station (about 2 blocks) and for the price of $58/night.
*Unfortunately we didn’t know at the time that Naples is considered a bad part of Italy. We never completely felt safe in Naples avoided Naples activities, but , we took local trains to other places like Pompeii.
Train to Pompeii
(Day 3) Early in the morning we took a local train to the city of Pompeii to take a tour. The train ride was short but difficult to figure out. Most locals, we found, did not speak English so asking for help took over an hour for us to figure out what train to actually get on. However, when we reached Pompeii, the city was small and beautiful. From the train station there is a main road that will lead you straight to the ancient city of Pompeii. You can purchase tickets to get out the excavated city, or take a tour. I had planned a tour in advance with Walks of Italy and took the amazing and historical tour at Pompeii. The price per person was around $70 and well worth the 3 hour tour. If you are on a budget stick to the $13 per person entry fee to enter the location and walk through it at your leisure. We stayed all day and even used the few cafes on site for lunch and dinner.
Train to Rome
(Day 4) We took ItaliaRail again from Naples to Rome. The trip was about one hour and was about $30 per person.
Where we stayed in Rome
We used Airbnb for our stay in Rome to avoid very touristy places. We stayed with a host named Anna Maria, who had a private room with a bathroom for $72/night near the Colosseum.
What to do in Rome
We were 2-3 blocks from the Colosseum. We ended up walking there after booking another tour with Walks of Italy.
The Colosseum tour took three hours at $67 per person. This included a tour of the Colosseum, the Roman Forum and Palatine Hill. The tour was well worth it, but if you enter the Information center you can obtain general admission for all of these sites and view them at your leisure.
The fountains and Spanish steps are free locations to check out, however you can purchase tickets onsite for the Castle and the Vatican. We saw the Castle at sunset and ate dinner on site (it’s overpriced but worth the view) then purchased night tickets to the Vatican online to avoid large crowds. I highly recommend visiting at night, but tickets only are available on Fridays from April – October. We literally got the last available October Friday of the year!
(Day 6) Today was another free day exploring Rome. We took multiple trains around the city, did some shopping and found an amazing pizza place Sapori E Delizie where we had both lunch and dinner. Very amazing pizza at great affordable pricing.
Two weeks in Italy is too much for one post. Next time I will share with you how we explored Cinque Terre, Florence and Venice!
Ciao for now!