While it looks like Italy will open up to European Union tourists in early June 2020, it’s not clear when it will be possible for foreign travellers to explore the country. In the meantime, you can travel to Italy from home and immerse yourself in the rich Italian culture. Take Italian cooking classes online, explore Italy’s world-class museum (from the comfort of your sofa), and discover more ways to travel from home with a virtual trip to Italy.
Join An Online Pizza and Pasta Making Class
We are quickly transported to Italy when we join Roberto and Denyse via Zoom and learn how to make pizza and pasta from their kitchen in Rome. This couple from Walks of Italy invite the world into their home throughout the week and on weekends. If ingredients are scarce in your area, Roberto and Denyse will quickly offer alternatives.
In addition to pizza and pasta, Roberto and Denyse offer a Sunday dinner series. Visit the Walks website to book these cooking classes, Tours From Home virtual experiences, or an introduction to Italian wine. If you don’t want to cook along, you can sit back with a glass your of favourite beverage – wine seems to be the drink of choice amongst participants – and watch the live cooking show.
Study the Italian Language
Join me and almost 6 million other people studying Italian with Duolingo. We are long time users of the engaging and effective Duolingo language learning app.
Take a Virtual Tour of Italy’s Museums
Explore Italy’s top museums from home through Google Arts & Culture. Google has partnered with museums and galleries in Italy (and around the world) to offer a virtual experience. You can search by alphabetically or through an interactive map of Italy. For example, explore Palazzo Vecchio Museum in Florence, La Galleria Nazionale in Rome, and the Museo del Novecento in Milan.
Tour Rome’s Silent Streets
Tune in to this video conversation with Roberta, a Flytographer photographer, hear about her experience while Rome was in lockdown, and follow her while she captures images of Rome’s silent streets.
Listen to Italian Music
Cycle Through Italy
I love riding a road bike on Italy’s mountain roads. In the meantime, I’m getting taking a virtual trip to Italy with the Rouvy cycling app. Users can choose augmented reality rides in Italy. A few of my favourites are Passo Vallporola, Passo Pordoi, and the mighty Stelvio!
Watch a Movie Filmed in Italy
Return to some of your favourite Italian destinations or discover new places to visit when you watch a movie filmed in Italy. Here are a few suggested movies. It’s not an exhaustive list. Please leave a comment and let me know if there are any other films I should watch and add to the suggestions.
The Talented Mr. Ripley – a thriller starring Matt Damon, Gwyneth Paltrow, & Jude Law on the Amalfi Coast (and other Italian destinations).
Casino Royale – the 2006 version starring Daniel Craig as James Bond, showcases Lake Como and Venice, Italy
Quantum of Solace – starring Daniel Craig as James Bond, this action-packed movie opens with scenes of Lake Garda, followed by Bond’s arrival in Siena during the famed Palio (horse race).
Eat Pray Love – I read this book years ago and haven’t watched the movie apart from the scenes filmed in Rome. It’s a fantastic way to take a virtual trip to the capital of Italy.
A Bigger Splash – travel to the Sicilian island of Pantelleria in this drama starring Tilda Swinton, Matthias Schoenaerts, Ralph Fiennes, and Dakota Johnson. I have only watched the trailer, but plan to watch the movie this weekend. Giorgio Armani owns a villa on this remote, volcanic island of Pantelleria, located about 100 km south of Sicily.
The Tourist – Angelina Jolie and Johnny Deep star in this action-packed thriller set in Venice, Italy.
Read About Italy
A. Books Set in Italy
I’m re-reading Under the Tuscan Sun, by Frances Mayes. I’m enjoying it, even more, the second time through. It’s such a treat to re-visit dreamy Tuscan hill towns like Cortona, and the wild Tuscan Maremma through travel writer Frances Mayes. For more books that will take you on a virtual trip to Italy, check out this list on the Goodreads website.
B. Italy Travel Guides
I often turn to Lonely Planet when I’m planning to travel to Italy and elsewhere in the world. Visit the Lonely Planet website and order an Italy travel book (or download the eBook). Photos, stories, and helpful travel tips provide miles of travel inspiration and an opportunity to escape on a virtual trip to Italy.
C. Blog Posts About Italy
I’ve been fortunate to travel to Italy every year for over a decade. I often write about favourite destinations, recommended experiences, and exceptional hotels. Scroll through the following blog posts and take a virtual trip to Italy. Please send me an email at [email protected] if you have any questions about future travel to Italy.
1. How to Discover the Authentic Cinque Terre
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