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Guide to Walking Holidays in Italy

While its food, lifestyle, and history-rich cities often take the spotlight, it's only when you venture beyond the bustling urban centres and uncover the breathtaking variety of natural landscapes and countryside that you can genuinely grasp the magnificence that is Italy. Regardless of whether you’re a first timer or a seasoners trekkker, Italy boasts an array of incredible options for everyone looking to discover this “Bel Paese” on with a walking holiday in Italy.

Italy is understandably called the boot of Europe for a reason. Whether you’re exploring the dramatic Amalfi coastline, uncovering the majesty of Lake Como, scaling the granite spires of the Dolomites or taking a fiery trip to the volcanoes of Sicily, Italy entices travellers to get their boots on and start walking. The options in Italy are incredibly vast, so this article will provide a comprehensive guide to walking holidays in Italy, giving you a helping hand as you start to plan your next trip.

Why do a Walking Holiday in Italy?

A walking holiday in Italy is not just a getaway; it's an opportunity to immerse yourself in a world of rolling hills, romance, and "la dolce vita" like no other. Italy's rich tapestry of landscapes offers a diverse range of walking trails that cater to every walking enthusiast’s preferences and desires. Here are a few reasons why embarking on a walking holiday in Italy is an absolute must.

The Cuisine


For any holidays in Italy, the cuisine is a highlight that will tantalise your taste buds and leave a lasting impression. As you explore the picturesque landscapes and charming villages, you'll have the chance to savour Italy's world-renowned culinary delights. From the moment you arrive in the country, you'll encounter an array of flavours, from the inviting scents of freshly baked bread to the comforting taste of homemade pasta. Each region offers its own unique specialties, like the delicious seafood dishes along the Amalfi Coast, the hearty Tuscan cuisine, or the bold flavours of Sicily. You'll dine in cosy trattorias, family-run osterias, and open-air piazzas, enjoying dishes made with locally sourced ingredients, including fresh vegetables, olive oil, and cheeses. And, of course, don't forget the wine – Italy's vineyards produce some of the finest wines in the world, making every meal a celebration of the country's rich culinary heritage.



Brimming with History


Throughout Italy history surrounds you at every turn. It's streets and countryside are like an open book of the past, with historical remnants and cultural treasures waiting to be discovered. Whether you're visiting ancient Roman ruins, medieval castles, or Renaissance-era churches, you'll step back in time and get a sense of Italy's remarkable heritage. The very stones you walk upon have witnessed the rise and fall of empires, the works of famous artists, and the lives of countless generations. Walking in Italy is not just a physical journey but a historical exploration that allows you to connect with the country's enduring past.


Personal Achievement


Taking on a walking holiday In Italy allows you to come home with an overwhelming sense of achievement. Italy is full of walking trails that can challenge even the most experienced trekkers. Reaching the summit of a challenging trail or completing a long-distance hike can create a tangible sense of personal triumph. As you traverse the picturesque landscapes of this remarkable country, whether it be the rolling vineyards of Tuscany, the rugged trails of the Dolomites, or the historical pathways of ancient Rome, the accomplishment of completing your trek will be something that lives with you for a long time.

Best Region for your Walking Holiday in Italy

Italian Alps

The Italian Alps offer a diverse range of experiences, from the majestic Monta Rosa, the second-highest peak in the Alps, to the enchanting Dolomites with their iconic jagged peaks. The Italian High-Level Route (or Sentiero Italia) beckons intrepid hikers with a challenging yet rewarding long-distance trek, traversing a network of trails that showcase the Alps' stunning beauty. And just beyond Italy's border lies Mont Blanc, Western Europe's highest summit, where the views from the trails are nothing short of awe-inspiring.



Sicily, as a destination for a walking holiday in Italy, offers a diverse mix of natural beauty and cultural experiences. It's a place where you can explore a variety of landscapes, from the rugged coastlines to fertile valleys and ancient hilltop villages. Mount Etna, an active stratovolcano, is the standout attraction, providing adventurous hikers with the opportunity to make a challenging ascent. The hike to its summit offers incredible views and the chance to stand on one of the world's most active volcanoes. Nearby, the Aeolian Islands, including Stromboli, offer further exploration opportunities, with its regular volcanic activity and beautiful beaches.


Sardinia is a great place for a walking holiday. With its rugged landscape and ancient history, it offers a unique experience. The Supramonte Mountains, known for their limestone peaks and canyons, have challenging hiking trails that lead to stunning views and hidden caves. You'll come across Nuraghe monuments, ancient stone fortresses dating back to the Bronze Age, scattered throughout the island, giving you a glimpse into its history. Along the coast, you'll find Pedra Longa, a striking cliff that rises from the Mediterranean Sea. Sardinia's walking holiday is an opportunity to explore its landscapes, learn about its history, and enjoy some peace and quiet.


A walking holiday in Tuscany, Italy, is a captivating journey through a region known for its picturesque landscapes, rich history, and enchanting towns. As you explore this beautiful region, you'll encounter lots of different experiences, from the bustling streets of Florence, where you can immerse yourself in Renaissance art and architecture, to the medieval charm of Siena and the well-preserved medieval towers of San Gimignano. Walking along the Via Francigena and Ria Romea Pilgrim routes, you'll trace the steps of pilgrims of old, discovering ancient churches and rustic villages along the way. Tuscany's allure lies not only in its scenic trails but also in its fusion of history, culture, and natural beauty, making it an ideal destination for a memorable walking holiday in Italy.

Amalfi Coast

This rugged and picturesque coastline is studded with a network of well-marked hiking trails that wind their way through lush lemon groves, fragrant vineyards, and dense forests, all while offering breathtaking views of the Mediterranean Sea. Along the way, you'll encounter quaint, pastel-coloured villages such as Amalfi, Positano, and Ravello, each with its own unique character and culinary delights.

Lake Como

With its stunning alpine landscapes and deep blue waters, Lake Como offers a truly magical experience. The charming towns and villages that dot the shoreline, such as Bellagio, Varenna, and Menaggio, provide a perfect base for exploring the region on foot. As you embark on your walking adventure, you'll meander through cobblestone streets, lush gardens, and historic villas.

What's the Accommodation like in Italy?

On our walking holidays in Italy, the accommodation options vary depending on the trip you are taking. From centre-based hotels to hut-to-hut mountain treks there is a wide range of options when it comes to accommodation in Italy.

Mountain Huts


Staying in a mountain hut allows you to escape the crowds and immerse yourself in the serene heart of Italy's mountainous landscapes. Perched in pristine high-altitude locations, these rustic lodgings provide a sense of isolation and tranquillity. While the accommodations may be modest, the welcoming hospitality of the retreat keepers and the camaraderie with fellow hikers foster a unique and communal atmosphere. Waking up to panoramic mountain vistas and sharing tales of the trail over a wholesome meal make alpine retreats an integral part of an Italian Alpine adventure.



Camping on your Italian walking holiday provides a unique opportunity to connect with nature and savour the country's breathtaking scenery. Italy boasts numerous designated campsites, offering facilities such as showers, restrooms, and often access to cooking areas. Tents are thoughtfully provided during your campsite stays, eliminating the need to carry one along.



Many of our Italian walking holidays include one or more nights spent in a charming hotel, and sometimes, even more. These play a pivotal role in the Italian walking experience, offering a comfortable and rejuvenating retreat after a day of exploration.



Staying in a hostel during an Italian walking holiday presents a unique and immersive experience. These charming, often family-run establishments provide insight into local life and culture. Typically involving dormitory-style lodging, they consistently offer good facilities, making them an engaging and budget-friendly choice

How difficult are the trails in Italy?

Our walking holidays in Italy are designed to accommodate a wide range of fitness levels and preferences, offering various levels of difficulty. If you prefer a relaxed pace, serene coastal strolls along the captivating Mediterranean coastline await you. For instance, our self-guided walk of Liguria which takes you from Cinque Terre, through Portofino and on to Porto Venere Cinque Terre allows you to immerse yourself in the charm and beauty of the Italian Riviera at your own leisure. Similarly, A self-guided walking holiday through Tuscany will allow you to wind around the Tuscan coast at your own pace, while taking in the incredible scenery.


If you crave a more challenging adventure, we have an array of holidays tailored to meet your expectations. Consider our Via Ferrata journey through the Italian Dolomites, which offers an invigorating journey across the jagged mountain scenery. It provides an ample challenge, allowing you to explore the awe-inspiring landscapes without an overwhelming physical strain. Another option is to take on the Italian high-level route. This hut-to-hut journey takes you through the Alps from Italy to Switzerland along the stunning Lisjoch Pass. With Alpine mountaineering tuition a challenging level of difficulty this walking holiday will display the stunning views of the Italian Alps whilst providing a great sense of accomplishment when it has been completed.

If you are looking for a really tough adventure, look no further than the Classic Haute Route that traverses the Alps from Mont Blanc to the Matterhorn. Starting in Chamonix, France, this journey makes its way into Italy and then on to Switzerland on a remarkable journey. This trip offers an unparalleled opportunity to push your physical and mental limits while indulging in the sheer magnificence of the high-altitude landscapes.

Alternatives to Walking in Italy

If you've already savoured the delights of Italy and are now enthusiastic about discovering the diverse wonders Europe has to offer beyond its borders, we offer a range of walking holidays tailored to your preferences. Embark on a journey to France, where you can traverse the trails of the French Riviera, immerse yourself in the picturesque landscapes of Provence, or meander through the charming villages of the Alps. Similarly, Spain presents a wealth of walking options, from completing the Camino de Santiago to exploring the Canary Islands or experiencing the coastal beauty of Catalonia. For those in search of an off-the-beaten-path destination, Slovenia may be your perfect choice. Its captivating combination of stunning lakes and breathtaking Alpine landscapes makes it an undiscovered gem that should not be underestimated when considering your next travel destination. Regardless, if Italy is not your desired destination, the rest of Europe is brimming with enticing locations waiting to be explored on foot.


Across the sea the Balkan countries including Croatia, Serbia, Greece and Albania to name a few, offers quieter unspoilt regions of Europe with spectacular remote walking in a rugged picturesque landscape. 


With an equally wide range of walking holidays, from  gentile saunters along the Mediterranean and Atlantic coasts to scaling the high alpine peaks, including the infamous Mont Blanc.


A Latin cousin of Italy, Spain offers spectacular walking holidays in warm climates with incredible food and famous hospitality.

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