Secret spots from our community
Italy's history, food and art are known around the world, so it's no surprise that the whole world loves to holiday in Italy! But as you (re)discover Italy this year, look beyond Rome and Venice for some truly authentic experiences - uncover art in Liguria, sunbathe in Sicily or hike in the Dolomites. You can escape the crowds and support local attractions by exploring the secret spots of our Italy ambassador and community.
Recommendations from our Italy ambassador ⭐
Lucio Abatemarco's Italian secret spots
Are you planning your trip to discover Italy, but want to avoid the classic tour of Rome, Venice, Florence, Pisa, Milan? Those are certainly wonderful cities which you should visit at least once in your life. However, there are less "famous" places which are great for those who come to Italy for the first time.
One of these is Bolzano, the gateway to the Dolomites mountain range in the Italian Alps. If you like the mountains and hiking this is the perfect place for you.
If you are tired of the crowd in Rome, I invite you to visit Sperlonga, Lazio. It has pristine beaches, gardens with plenty of flowers, museums and old palaces.
For sea lovers you must go south to visit Tropea, Calabria, or go even further south to Sicily and the town of Cefalù.
To complete the tour, take the time to visit Bussana Vecchia, Liguria, the city of artists.
If you liked Lucio's recommendations and are eager for more, then head over to our other Italy page, where can you meet 3 more Italian locals from our Interrail community.
Secret spots from our community
Our wonderful Interrail community have sent us photos and stories of secret spots that they discovered while travelling in Europe. Below you can find a selection of highlights from Italy. Discover local spots in Italian cities, some of the best places for food and wine, as well as highlights in Italian nature.
You can find all of the secret spots on the map below, along with the Italy ambassador destinations and our secret spots competition editor pick marked with stars:
Secret Spots competition editor pick
Lago del Predil, Italy-Slovenia border
We came to find this gem whilst on holiday in Lake Bled, Slovenia. This was the most beautiful lake and scenery we had ever come across. It was so peaceful. The little island in the centre also holds an ancient myth.
Rome & Lazio
The Appian Way
It was pretty magical walking on the oldest road in the world - the Appian Way. It was just as I had pictured it growing up reading Asterix comics - cobblestones, catacombs and a lovely osteria to enjoy a meal.
Civita di Bagnoregio
Nicknamed ''the dying city''. Located in Central Italy, this city is based upon a hill, and due to to the geological conformation, it will disappear over the next decades.
Getting there by rail: Take a 1h 05m regional train (no reservations) from Roma Tiburtina to Orvieto. From the train station you can buy tickets for and catch a COTRAL bus which will take you to the village of Bagnoregio, at the base of the hill city.
Tuscany & Pisa
Principe Corsini winery, San Casciano In Val di Pesa
We found this wonderful family-run winery in Tuscany and had the most wonderful lunch, view, and wine tasting of anywhere we have been.
Getting there by rail: The town of San Casciano In Val di Pesa is located within the city limits of Florence. Sadly it is not connected by train from the city centre, so the easiest way to get to the winery is on a 50 minute Busitalia bus.
Natural Park Migliarino San Rossore
This park is near Pisa and has pathways which lead to the sea. You can rent bikes to ride through the park and explore. We had a great time and met nice people.
Getting there by rail: Located just west of Pisa, you can walk there from San Rossore train station in 50 minutes or drive in 12 minutes.
Viewing platform panorama
We visited our family who live near Venice last year and they told us of the viewing platform above a shopping centre, near the Rialto Bridge. It is a perfect place to appreciate the history of such a magnificent European city.
''Libreria Acqua Alta''
This is a staircase made entirely of books. It is called the ''Libreria Acqua Alta'', which translates to ''Library of high water''. I stumbled across it in Venice whilst Interrailing and it amazed me! When Venice floods, the books will float!
Genoa & Lake Como
I really love this photo because it reminds me of travelling alone for the first time. It was really special - the place, the people, the sun and the memories I created there!
Getting there by rail: From Genoa city centre, take a 5 minute train from Genoa Brignole station to Genoa Sturla. Then it is a short walk to the beach.
Una Finestra Sul Lago restaurant, Carate Urio
The best of Italian food and drink, with the best views of Lake Como. I like to have a full 3 hour dinner, enjoying the sights and sounds of the lake, accompanied by a great meal.
Getting there by rail: Take a direct 40 minute train from Milan to Como S.Giovanni, then a 20 minute bus to Carate Urio.
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If you want to discover more of Italy, then you can find out how to add it to your next Interrail Pass trip with more destinations and rail travel tips on our Italy main page.