At SloWays, we are passionate about encouraging and promoting the hidden treasures of Italy, those off-the-beaten-path corners, and almost undiscovered gems of the country. These are the hamlets and villages where you can easily connect with the authentic, unfiltered spirit, and the genius loci of this multifaceted nation. (see our blog post about Italian borghi to find out more!)
That being said, we understand that there are certain must-see places in Italy, especially for first-time visitors who have undoubtedly heard of the golden Amalfi Coast, the enchanting wonders of Rome, or the picturesque, cliff-top, pastel-hued houses of Cinque Terre perched dramatically above the sea. As much as we want to introduce you to Italy's lesser-known side, we would never deter you from witnessing the iconic destinations that have always captivated your imagination when thinking of Italy.
If you are planning to visit our best known locations, here are a few tips to ensure your experience is as enriching as possible:
Choose a walking tour
If you're intrigued by what we have to offer, you're probably inclined to embark on a walking tour. Even in places as famous as these, a walking excursion provides an ideal opportunity for a deeper exploration of their core essence. Exploring a location on foot allows you to savor it at a slower pace, immersing yourself in the full beauty of the surroundings, one step at a time.
Our itineraries typically encompass a balanced mix of well-known hiking trails in the area and some hidden gems that take you away from the crowds. For example, our Amalfi Coast trip not only guides you along the renowned Sentiero degli Dei but also leads you to the untamed Valley of the Ferriere, a Biogenetic Natural Reserve nestled just outside Amalfi. Here, you can experience a pristine and luxuriant natural environment, a true hidden treasure.
Choose Shoulder Seasons
In simple terms, avoid the central summer months. During July and August, the most touristy places in Italy tend to become extremely crowded, and the sweltering heat can make walking almost unbearable. If flexibility is an option, consider opting for the spring—April, May, and the early days of June are particularly ideal—or the fall—from late September to November, which can still offer a very enjoyable experience, especially in the southern regions.
This not only keeps your costs lower (as they tend to rise during the high season) but also ensures fewer crowds, simplified logistics (booking restaurants or taking a bus becomes considerably easier), and more time and space for your hosts to welcome you in the best possible way, without being overwhelmed by the influx of visitors.
Enhance Your Experience with Tailor-Made Cultural Encounters
While a walking tour is an excellent way to explore a region, there are ways to make your experience even more enriching and immerse yourself in the local culture.
You can ask us to incorporate a few extra activities during your free time. Picture yourself strolling through beautiful landscapes and then indulging in a hands-on cooking class with your host or embarking on a storytelling-based guided tour of the village.
Take it a step further by extending your stay and combining active adventures with cultural encounters. You might spend one day hiking and the next exploring neighboring villages, uncovering archaeological sites, visiting a local winery just a few kilometers from town, and more. This allows you to create a well-rounded and truly immersive experience that delves into both the natural beauty and cultural richness of the region
Stay Longer and Explore Lesser-Known Locations
If your travel plans extend beyond a week, why not consider merging two trips and venture into a lesser-known part of the country? Imagine how enriched and diverse your journey could be by combining two distinct destinations – you'll have the chance to experience both the popular and iconic as well as the undiscovered and authentic, all in a single holiday. (see our blog post about 7 fresh alternatives to popular destinations here)
Many destinations can be seamlessly connected by high-speed trains (see our blog post about travelling by train here) allowing you to bridge two entirely different facets of Italian scenery and culture within just a few hours of travel. This offers you a unique opportunity to delve into the rich tapestry of Italy and create unforgettable memories in both well-trodden and unexplored regions.
Finally, if you're planning to explore the most renowned parts of the country, now is the perfect time to make your reservation. Booking your holiday well in advance allows you to secure the carefully selected accommodations we offer, without the hassle of searching for availability and settling for less distinctive or pricier alternatives.
By booking ahead, you'll have the upcoming months to look forward to, knowing that you're on your way to your dream destination. This will give you ample time to learn more about the places you'll visit and prepare for your hiking tour, ensuring a smooth and enjoyable experience.