Italy…why is it such an amazing destination? That it finished first or second in four of six destination categories in the 2018
Virtuoso Luxe Report may come as no surprise to most of us. Here are the categories it placed high in:
Top Global Destinations (from first to fifth)
Italy, Iceland, South Africa, France and Australia and New Zealand in a tie
Top Family Travel Destinations
Italy, Mexico, Orlando, Hawaii and Costa Rica
Top Honeymoon Destinations
Italy, Maui, French Polynesia, Maldives and Bali
Top Millennial Destinations
Thailand, Italy, Iceland, Costa Rica, Australia and South Africa (tie)
Based on a AAA travel agent booking survey, Rome is the number one destination in Europe for families, ranking behind only Cancun, Punta Cana and Montego Bay. And of those interested in visiting Europe in the next 2 years, Italy was number one with Millennials, Boomers and Matures, only trailing England by one percentage point with the Gen Xers. So why is that?
Having traveled there five times now, I can tell you from experience that the fascination and satisfaction level of exploring all corners of this amazing country is off the charts. The food is unique in each region, always fresh and local, and, in my experience, very clean (as in often organic and sans chemical additives.) The wines are incredible. The history and architecture is fascinating around every corner. The landscapes are among some of the most beautiful I have ever seen in my life. And then there are the people! Italians are strong, passionate, friendly, and lovers of life!
A first visit to Italy typically covers Rome, Venice and Florence, and if time and money allows, the Amalfi Coast. Lots of companies provide pre-packaged itineraries that can save you significant money, as they are contracted more than a year in advance. Your travel professional can guide you in choosing the best one for your budget and desires.
Some travel on an ocean cruise from Rome to Venice, adding an extension on either or both ends, and that’s a great value as well. Consider, though, that in doing so you will not experience the local foods and wines unless when you stop in port you have a lovely lunch at a local restaurant. Dining in Italy at night is an event not to be missed!
If you have “been there, done that” in Italy, consider the Emilia Romagna region for your next trip. With landscapes, local foods like Parmigiano Reggiano cheese, Parma hams and local balsamic farms, and ancient Roman history from the Adriatic to Parma, the region fascinates. Bologna is a great city for lodging, and I love the Corona d’Oro hotel. Refer to a former blog of mine about the region if you’d love to know more.
Are you ready? You will not be disappointed. I am here for you if you’d like some assistance…I have planned lots of Italian vacations in my career. And it’s always best to plan a year in advance, although for air it’s about 10.5 months. See you in Italy!!