Italy is SO beautiful and is a must for anyone inspired by art, food, or history. It’s where Romans ruled, Boticelli painted, and Da Vinci changed the way we see the world. It’s where Gucci, Ferrari, and Fiat originate. It’s the place that showed the rest of us what “la dolce vita” truly means.
There are so many places to go in this country (I use that term loosely as until less than 200 years ago they were all their own city-states and still have yet to get over the fact that they are “unified”) that I cannot cover them all in one post. So let’s just cover travel tips and packing!
- Look out for pickpockets and scammers near tourist attractions (don’t take any roses on the street!)
- Understand that you are now on “Italy Time” (take your time, enjoy the moment)
- Don’t eat near tourist attractions if it can be avoided (here are some other “don’ts”)
- Take the train (instead of flying or renting a car)
- Go off the beaten path (visit neighborhoods and countryside where real Italians live)
What to Pack
Don’t forget these essentials…
- a scarf that can be worn around the neck or double as a shawl for cathedrals where you need to cover bare shoulders.
- a pair of knee high boots that are comfortable for walking
- an umbrella
- a tote bag and easy to carry luggage (no elevators and escalators at hotels and transportation hubs so you have to lug everything you bring)
- Clothes you can layer
- pepper spray (just kidding, it’s illegal in Italy)
CityGirl’s Travelista Packing List For Italy
I like to have options, but when you deal with airlines nowadays you have to either have a ton of money to waste for a second bag, or a Delta AMEX card so you can bring up to 9 bags for FREE. Either way, that’s not me. When you have to pack your whole life for a month plus into a carry on you need to be realistic about taking your favorite cashmere sweater that has to be hand washed and hung to dry. Not happening. Be practical. Be radical. But still be fabulous.
Mixing and matching is key. With this packing list you can be stylish and versatile while still packing reasonably light. I’m traveling for 40 days in September and October so I need late summer cool and early fall warm all in one bag. There will be sunshine, fall leaves, rain, and maybe snow if go up the Dolomites.
For this trip you could absolutely just take a carry on… but since I’ll be volunteering and attending a history conference I need a few more options that are good for not just touristing around visiting museums and enotecas. My extra stuff is not on this basic list and this packing list could be packed in a carry on 22″ and weeknder tote/duffel.
I’m taking (a 27″ Atlantic Luggage roller bag to check with my specialty stuff) and a 22″ Diane von Furstenberg carry on roller bag. I’ll also have an extra large Sak tote for a water bottle, scarf, snacks, eyemask, charger, tablet, and my Gucci crossbody handbag for the plane (because… priorities!).
Like I said, this list could fit just into a carry on and weekender tote/duffel, or for backpackers a 70L or more backpack.
All of my items will be packed in stuff saks or packing cubes. One for tees and pajamas, one for tops, one for bottoms, one for dresses, one for underthings and socks, and another one for things I buy on the trip.
- 1 pair of jeans
- 2 pair of leggings – one black and one grey
- 1 pair of workout capris and a workout tee (in case I go hiking)
- 2 skirts – one knee length and one maxi
- 1 pair of Spanx tights
- 2 tank tops with lace edging
- 2 v neck shirts
- 2 tunic sweaters
- 2 meeting blouses and 2 meeting skirts (for the Kingdom Hall)
- 2 dresses
- 1 cardigan
- 1 coat (warm but not bulky)
- 1 scarf
- 3 bras
- 7 panties
- 1 pair of pajamas, top and bottoms
- 2 purses – a crossbody Gucci and a tote bag
- 1 pair of boots
- 1 pair of flats
- 1 pair of Birkenstock sandals
- 1 pair of heels
- Face wash
- Lotion for body and face
- Face mask
- Tooth powder
- Detangling comb and brush
- Elastic hair ties and bobby pins
- Prescription medicine
- Makeup (eyeshadow, eyeliner, remover wipes, brow stuff, lip glosses)
- Lunette Cup
- iPad /Tablet
- Adapter for Europe with USB port
- Bike lock (for rental bikes)
- Laundry bar for washing clothes in the sink
- Travel book/ map
- Journal/ pen
- Water bottle
- Eyemask/ neck roll
- Money belt (I’m taking it but I doubt I’ll use it)
- Jewelry – to make your simple mix and match more stylish
- Wine opener (just saying)
- Passport holder and organizer
Have a fabulous trip!!