It’s no surprise that Italy is one of the most romantic countries in the world – each destination is stunning in its own way. Italy’s cities make for the perfect romantic break, with world-class art galleries, fascinating ancient monuments, stunning viewpoints, incredible cuisine and more. Here’s what couples can expect from a romantic break in Italy’s big four…
Did you know that the Patron Saint of Lovers was Roman? So it’s only right that it is the perfect place for couples to spend quality time together.
Of course, you have Rome’s iconic sights to visit, including the Trevi Fountain where you can throw a coin and wish each other well. However, some of the most romantic spots can be found just outside of Rome’s historic centre. Head for Villa Borghese and the pretty gardens. Whether it’s the summer or winter months, the gardens have plenty to explore and wander – you could even hire a bike. The Borghese Gallery on site is also worth a visit.
In the afternoon, the Trastevere neighbourhood offers up plenty of tables for two at gorgeous cafes and restaurants. A neighbourhood that’s often overlooked by tourists, it is perfect for getting a more authentic Roman experience.
For those who love to take that perfect selfie, Rome’s incredible skyline makes a great backdrop. There are lovely viewpoints all over the city, most notably those from the Roman Forum, next to the Colosseum.
If you are visiting on Valentine’s Day itself, look out for the two for one tickets available at state-run museums.
Verona is without a doubt one of the most romantic places in Italy – it’s home to the most famous lovers of all time, Romeo and Juliet. Verona is a romantic spot whatever time of year you visit, but over Valentine’s it’s a pretty big deal – the city even hosts a dedicated festival called Verona in Love.
What can you expect from this festival? Well, firstly lights and decorations adorn the city, adding to its already charming and characterful streets. The main event takes places in Piazza del Signori, where market stalls offer up samplings of authentic products, and give you the opportunity to by local gifts for your loved one. The best bit? If you climb the tower on the south side of the piazza (Torre dei Lamberti), you’ll see that the stalls are arranged into a heart shape from above. Aw!
Then there’s the ‘message from the heart’, which is where you get the opportunity to leave a note of your love on a giant notice board in the Old Market Courtyard – maybe one for the ladies.
Many of the restaurants put on what they call ‘show cooking’, where chefs showcase the best dishes and put on themed dinners. Also, make sure you look out for many live music shows, proposals and even marriages in some of Verona most romantic hotspots (think Juliet’s house).
Finally, there’s a little something for active couples, too – the Romeo and Juliet Half Marathon takes place on 18 February. It’s not too late to register…
It doesn’t get more fairy-tale than the city of Venice. Its maze of canals and tiny cobbled lanes lined with coffee shops and restaurants and boutique shops lend themselves perfectly to hand-in-hand strolls.
As clichéd as it might be, the top thing for couples to enjoy on a romantic getaway to Venice is a gondola ride. Ask for your ride to take you under the Bridge of Sighs – legend has it couples that sail under the bridge can expect eternal love and happiness.
Piazza San Marco is a lovely place to spend an evening. Many of the restaurants that line the square have live orchestras. These restaurant do charge a fee for sitting al fresco and listening, however you are still able to enjoy the music from another if they aren’t playing directly there.
One evening, enjoy a meal at Hotel Danieli’s terrace restaurant. They lay claim to one of the most spectacular sunset views in Venice. The menu of typical Venetian cuisine with a Mediterranean fare is pretty special, too.
Florence is an art lover’s paradise. Renaissance architecture is prominent throughout the city in its monuments, palazzos and romantic piazzas. Spend a day exploring the art galleries and museums, in particular the Uffizi Gallery (home to Michelangelo’s David), where on Valentine’s Day itself, they offer one ticket free for couples.
The Ponte Vecchio, Florence’s famous shop-lined bridge, is the perfect place to pick some jewellery up for your loved ones. Then pick up a bottle of Prosecco and watch the sunset from the Piazzale Michelangelo – the famous viewpoint across Florence. After, find a restaurant serving the traditional Tuscan dish of bistecca alla Fiorentina. This steak is big enough and recommended to share.
Where are you and your loved one visiting this Valentine’s Day?