ETIAS - Traveling to Italy
U.S. citizens can travel to Italy using an ETIAS visa waiver
Country of Italy
- Euro (€)
- UTC+1 (Central European Time)
Emergency Italy Telephone Numbers
112 (112 is the equivalent to 911 in the US)
Italy is a sumptuous feast, a feast for the eyes, the appetite, the soul. A member of the Schengen Agreement since 1990, Italy is one of the most popular destinations for American tourists. The country welcomes more than 63 million visitors each year. Statistically this alone could account for thousands of barrels of fine Italian wine being consumer annually! The long meandering coastline wraps this little boot-shaped country in the embrace of the azure seas that surround it, and its incredible mix of topography from glacial lakes to dolomite mountains, verdant hills to active volcanoes, and sweeping vineyards to cobbled villages makes Italy a place one could explore for a lifetime and never tire of the unearthed treasures found along the way.
Italy’s food and wine culture is unparalleled and is a driving force of cuisine trends far beyond its borders. Cutting edge fashion, contemporary and renaissance art, and music of many genres are birthed here and have been for centuries. Its ancient cities are study in perfection for travelers seeking lively European culture married to thousands-years-old history. Steeped in rich tradition and historic significance―Rome with its Colosseum, Venice’s century-old canals, Tuscany’s sun-drenched villages, Florence’s renaissance masterpieces and the island of Sicily, a Mediterranean crossroads―Italy offers exploration in equal measure with relaxation.
Italy is counted as one of the five most popular countries for international tourism and with good reason, it is a study in the past melding artfully with the present, a place of distinct natural beauty, and of its warm, welcoming people embracing la dolce Vita.
With authorization for the ETIAS Visa Waiver for visa-free travel to Italy and Schengen Area countries beginning in 2021, those dreams of exploring Italy are just a reservation away.
Primary Languages: Italian, English, French, Spanish.
Where to Go
The capitol city of Rome is thrilling and dizzying all at once. If there is a word for older-than-ancient, then Rome is it. Juxtaposed with the contemporary world of high fashion, high cuisine and high design, the crumbling ruins reach out and invite visitors to imagine the past. Gladiators dueling in the Colosseum or Michelangelo conjuring the Pieta for St. Peter's Basilica, painters and architects creating masterpieces on canvas and carved of marble. Rome has more history to uncover than perhaps any place on earth.
Fashion forward Milan in the northern Lombardy region is fast paced and is the face of today’s Rome. The circa 1877 Grand Galleria Vittorio Emanuele II, has the elegant energy of a magnificent concert hall yet it is actually a luxurious fantastical indoor shopping mall. Designer shops boast labels including Versace, Prada and Luis Vuitton and those seeking European designer fashion will find it here. Attractions are resplendent; The Duomo (Milan Cathedral), a gothic masterpiece, DaVinci’s The Last Supper, La Scala Opera House and the 15th century castle, Castello Sforzesco, are just a sample of the boundless cultural offerings here. Meandering the charming and bohemian Brera District offers a pasticcio of cool art galleries, eateries and bars. Milan dining is decidedly northern; Risotto Milanese and Ossobuco and several polenta presentations stand out as regional classics. Milan after dark is sophisticated and progressive.
Watery Venice, the “City of Bridges,” is unlike any other city in the world. The city, on the northeast coast of Italy, consists of dozens of small islands floating in a lagoon. Iconic Venice has canals instead of roads lacing one place to the next with all types of boats transporting people and goods. Romantic gondolas are a beloved symbol of the city and tours of the canals are a favorite way to explore. Most famous of the canals is the Grand Canal; a main waterway elegantly banked by impressive and awing palaces and churches showcasing stunning gothic and renaissance architecture. Venice’s Piazza San Marco (St. Mark’s Square) which is home to Basilica di San Marco (St. Mark’s Basilica) and Plaza Ducale has been called, “the drawing room of Europe.” Venice has a vibrant art and music scene and incredible dining. Visitors can easily go on to explore smaller islands of Lido, Buran or Murano, which is home to the world-famous synonymous glass.
Don’t Miss: Venice’s 16th century Rialto Bridge, crafted of Istrian stone by Antonio da Ponte. Its 24-foot arch allows for vessels to pass beneath. The views at sunrise and sunset are romantic and insta-worthy.
The Mountains and Hill Towns
Italy’s three primary mountain ranges include the Italian Alps in the north, the Apennines, oft-called the “spine” of Italy, and the Dolomites in the northeast. With some of the loveliest scenery anywhere in the world and bursting with diverse nature, the Dolomites are a draw to visitors for world-class skiing in winter, hiking and cycling in summer and dining, shopping and culture all year.
Tuscany and the Tuscan Hill Towns are sun-kissed places of wonder. The region is the quintessential Italian country adventure. Visitors can meander by car or bicycle through wine lover’s villages including Montalcino, Cortona and Pienza. Tuscany, replete with hillside farms, vineyards and mountains ranges from verdant to rocky and run from the coast at The Ligurian Sea inland to the Umbrian border.
Florence, with its historic center a UNESCO World Heritage Site, admired for its abundance of renaissance art and dramatic architecture is one of the most important places for art and its history in Europe. Found here are some of the most famous works of Michelangelo, Botticelli, Titan, and Donatello as part of a dazzling expanse of art and artifacts. Florence’s Cathedral, The Basilica di Santa Maria del Fiore, the Museum of San Marco, the Fountain of Neptune, and countless fresco adorned churches, world-class museums and big-city offerings including designer shopping, fine dining and after-dark activities beckon travelers from around the world.
The Coast - Sicily
The island Sicily is culturally rich and rife with regional history. The island sits across the Strait of Messina from the continent. Its dramatic landscape and seascape are inviting for the roughhewn beauty and the beaches invite sun lovers to bask and swim in the crystalline sea.
Rich in diverse cultural influences, the island is a melting pot of architecture, food and wine, and art. Of course, with its lush culinary history many visitors bask the Mediterranean flare of classic southern Italian cuisine which leans on the provisions like local seafood, citrus, almonds, and ricotta for inspiration. Regions including Ragusa, Trapani, Messina, Egadi, Catania, and Linosa invite sojourners to explore the largest island in the Mediterranean.
Italy borders 4 European countries including France, Switzerland, Austria, and Slovenia to its north. Its water borders are the Adriatic Sea, Tyrrhenian Sea, Ionian Sea, and the Mediterranean Sea. Italy and the four countries that border it are Schengen Area countries and will require ETIAS authorization for the Visa Waiver Program being launched by the European Union in 2021.