Only in Italy...

Amazing Italian experiences and activities that you would only ever find in Italy

From a pizza-making class in Naples to a gondola driving lesson in Venice, a fresco workshop in Florence to Gladiator fighting lessons in Rome, a drive through the Tuscan countryside in a classic Fiat 500 to an audience with the Pope, these are the "Only in Italy" experiences...

La Torre Pendente
Duration: ~1 hour
Cost: €TK per person

» more

Climb the Leaning Tower of Pisa

The cathedral bell tower of Pisa would draw crowds even if it didn't have such horrible posture. Its long cylinder of white marble threaded with the lithe arches of stacked colonnades make it one of the prettiest towers you'll ever see—albeit one titling crazily out of plumb. The climb up is odd and thrilling...

Duration: 3.5 hours
Cost: $119 per person
Book: Reserve with Viator

Tour the underground chambers, arena, and upper tier of the Colosseum

Experience the full glory of Rome's Colosseum on a unique, small-group tour with skip-the-line entry! Accompanied by an expert guide who is passionate about Roman history, you'll gain rare access to areas of the Colosseum that are newly opened, normally off-limits, or opened to only a limited number of daily tickets you have to get in advance—including the subterranean maze of passages, chambers, and cells where Roman gladiators prepared for battle, and where the fearsome, wild animals they fought were caged. Enjoy private viewings of the Colosseum's underground chambers, arena and upper level, and then head to the Roman Forum and Palatine Hill for unforgettable views of Ancient Rome...

Duration: 2 hours
Cost: €55 per person
Book: Reserve with Viator  

Roman Gladiator School: Learn How to Become a Gladiator

Master the basics of hand-to-hand combat at a genuine gladiator school on the ancient Appian Way. You'll get hands-on with ancient Roman history as your gladiator instructor teaches you how to fight with authentic weapons used by the gladiators of ancient Rome....

Duration: 4 hours
Cost: €75 per person
Private: €340 per party
Book: Reserve with Context Travel  

Naples Pizza Making Workshop

As we wind our way through the characteristic neighborhoods of via Toledo and Spaccanapoli, we will discuss the influence of the Spanish and Norman eras on Neapolitan food as we stop at some of the oldest cafes and pastry shops. Then we head to a famed pizzeria to create our own pizza—and feast on it for lunch....

Duration: 5 hours
Cost: €119 per person
Book: Reserve with Viator  

Self-Drive Vintage Fiat 500 Tour from Florence: Tuscan Villa and Picnic Lunch

Drive a vintage Fiat 500 to a gorgeous 15th-century Renaissance villa nestled in the picturesque Tuscan hills just outside of Florence. Traveling in a convoy behind an expert guide, you’ll drive along quiet private roads and then enjoy 2.5 hours at leisure. Swim in the villa’s pool, indulge in a picnic lunch with wine tasting, or upgrade to include a winemaking session in which, yes, they will let you stomp the grapes. (No one actually makes wine this way anymore, but c'mon: Who doesn't want to try it? Lucille Ball impressions are optional.)...

Duration: 3 hours
Cost: $0–$30 per group

» more

An audience with the Pope

Every Wednesday morning that the Pope is in residence in Rome, he addresses and blesses his many international visitors: in Piazza San Pietro on warmer days and inside the Sala Nervi during the winter. Join other pilgrims to see and hear the leader of the Catholic Church. Catholic or not, you'll find a Papal Audience a very special and memorable experience...

Duration: 3 hours
Cost: €75 per person
Private: €340 per party
Book: Reserve with Context Travel  

Florence Fresco Workshop

This fresco workshop provides a hands-on experience in the studio of an accomplished fresco artist, who will guide you through the steps of preparing a surface, drawing and transferring a drawing, and finally applying the paint. At end, you get to take home your own fresco...

Duration: 3 hours
Cost: €220 per person
Book: Reserve with Viator

Private viewing of the Sistine Chapel

See the Vatican as VIPs do – with this once-in-a-lifetime private Sistine Chapel viewing and tour of the Vatican Museum's secret rooms. This exclusive gives you unprecedented VIP access to the magnificent rooms usually off-limits to the public. Be awed by secret rooms like the Niccoline Chapel and the Room of Gold, and see classic sights like Raphael’s Rooms. This VIP experience includes skip-the-line entry and ends with an after-hours private viewing of the Sistine Chapel, empty except for your small group (average 10 people) and guide...

Duration: Whatever
Cost: From $10 per hour;
from $200 per tour

» more

Ride a Vespa

Feel the wind in your hair. Weave in and out of traffic. Get around far faster than walking but far more cheaply than with a car. Go all day on a cupful of gas. Make daytripping to outlying or nearby sights easy. Feel just a smidge like Audrey Hepburn or Gregory Peck from that classic scene in Roman Holiday. Yes, there are many reasons to mount a motorino in Italy or take a Vespa tour—just be smart about it...

Duration: 1–1.5 hours
Cost: €8 per person

» more

Climb Brunellechi's Dome

Hands down, my favorite thing to do at the Florence cathedral is to climb the 348-foot-high dome (la cupola del Duomo), both for the great panorama across the city you get from the top and to see, from the inside, Brunelleschi's architectural marvel. You actually clamber up between the dome's two onion-like layers—and in the process get some great up-close views not only of the engineering genius of Brunelleschi, the also of those crazy Zuccari frescoes covering the inside of the cupola...

Duration: 2–4 hours
Cost: From $37 per person

» more

Attend Opera at La Scala in Milan

Arguably the greatest (and certainly the most famous) opera house in the world, Milan's premier opera house—full name: Teatro alla Scala—is where Toscanini twirled his baton, Giuseppe Verdi was once the in-house composer, and Maria Callas trilled her way to fame and fortune. La Scala has been perhaps the most important opera house in the world since 1778. This is where Verdi, Bellini, Rossini, and Donizetti premiered their works—among them Norma, Nabucco, Madama Butterfly, and Aïda....

Duration: 5–9 hours
Cost: From $170 per person
Book: Reserve with Viator

Wine tour of Piemonte

Among wine cellars and famous vineyards of Langhe and Roero, come and taste the most famous Piedmontese wines: Barolo, Barbaresco, Nebbiolo, Roero, Barbera, Dolcetto and Arneis. Specially selected wine producers will enable you to taste flavors and specialties of the Piedmontese tradition. Choose between a half day or a full day tour...

Duration: 6 hours
Cost: $130 per person
Book: Reserve with Viator

Horse Riding in Chianti Day Trip from Florence

Take a day trip from Florence and spend the day horse riding in Italy's famous Chianti region. It's a unique opportunity to explore the beautiful Tuscan countryside, which is renowned worldwide for its vineyards and unparalleled beauty. Led by your friendly and knowledgeable English speaking guide you will be taken on horseback into the Chianti region where most of the region's famous wines are produced. You will ride for 1.5 hours through vineyards, olive groves and Middle Age villages seeing the Tuscan landscapes at their best....

Related pages

Tips & links

Walking tours and guide companies

Useful links & resources

Share this page

Intrepid Travel 25% off



Useful links
Train tix

Shortcuts to popular planning sections:

Airfares, Cars, Trains, Tours, Packages, Cruises, Lodging, Itineraries, Info, Packing, Prep, Comm

Follow ReidsItaly
Follow ReidsItaly on Twitter  Join the ReidsItaly fan page  Follow Reids Italy Adventures blog