All the books, films, music, apps, virtual tours, food, and wine to pretend you are in one of the most gorgeous countries on earth. Here’s how to travel to Italy from home.
Italy is one of the leading destinations on most people’s bucket list. It is, in fact, the 5th most visited country by international tourists. The spring and summer months are when most travelers flock to Europe, but sometimes life doesn’t go as planned and our trips are canceled or we can no longer go under unfortunate circumstances. Instead of being upset about the trip, you couldn’t go on, now is the perfect time to travel from the comforts of your own home.
The perfect destination to travel to from home is Italy. From food to movies and books, discover the best ways to bring the beautiful Italian culture straight to where you live:
Learn Italian on Duolingo
One of the best ways to travel to Italy from the comforts of your own home is by learning the Italian language. Italian is a romance language and one of the most beautifully spoken in the world. Duolingo is a free app where you could learn Italian with just 5 minutes a day with game-like lessons that make it easy for everyone whether you are a beginner learning the basics or you already know the language and you want to become better at reading and writing.
With the Duolingo app, you could learn Italian at any time during the day that is convenient for you. You don’t have to worry about going to a class at a specific time, it allows you to get your work done during the day and you could learn Italian anywhere and everywhere. With the Duolingo app, you will get a personalized education, receive immediate grading, stay motivated with rewards, and improve your Italian quickly.
Go on a Virtual Tour of Italy
Another amazing way to travel to Italy without leaving home is by doing a virtual tour. One of the best sites for touring Italy virtually is Tour Italy Now. They offer tours to all of the country’s major cities where you could kickstart your imagination and open your eyes to everything Italy has to offer when you are eventually able to travel there.
On a virtual tour of Italy, you could take a romantic gondola ride in Venice; visit the Colosseum in Rome – a Wonder of the World; wander through the ruins of Pompeii; pretend you’re in a fairytale in Tuscany and head to the beach in Taormina, Sicily.
Participate in an Italian Wine Tasting
Nothing screams Italy more than wine! One of the best ways to feel like you’re in Italy is by doing an Italian wine tasting.
Food and wine play a huge role when it comes to travel. Wine tasting is a lot of fun and whether you are enjoying your Italian wine on your living room couch, out on your porch, or in your bathtub, your mood will automatically increase. It is nice to pair red wine with pasta and meats; rosé with seafood; Champagne with breakfast or dessert-like foods and white wine with prosciutto and melon. It is also great to create a charcuterie board filled with cured meats, cheeses, and fruits to enjoy with your wine tasting.
Read a Book Based in Italy
One of the best ways to travel is by getting lost in a story. There are quite a few books that take place in Italy. The most popular ones are Eat, Pray, Love by Elizabeth Gilbert that takes place in Rome; Under the Tuscan Sun by Frances Mayes, which takes place in Tuscany; Romeo and Juliet by William Shakespeare that takes place in Verona; A Room with a View by E.M. Forster, which takes place in Florence; The Enchanted April by Elizabeth von Arnim that takes place in Portofino and The Magic Mountain by Thomas Mann, which takes place in the Dolomites.
These amazing books allow you to experience romance, food, history, adventure, and beauty within the country of Italy.
Watch an Italian Film
Movies are also a great way to travel to a specific destination. There are a plethora of wonderful films that take place in Italy that will have you feeling the sunny and romantic vibes the country offers to everyone who makes their way there. A lot of books that take place in Italy also have a movie version. Below are the best movies to watch that will bring you straight to Italy:
- Under the Tuscan Sun
- Only You
- Shadows in the Sun
- Eat, Pray, Love
- A Room with a View
- Letters to Juliet
- The Godfather
- Mary-Kate and Ashley’s When in Rome
- Romeo & Juliet
Make a Meal from an Italian Cookbook
A tasty way to travel to Italy without leaving your home is by cooking a meal from an Italian cookbook. Paola Lovisetti Scamihorn is a food blogger of Passion and Cooking based in Como, Italy, and author of the books The Mamma Mia! Diet and Authentic Italian Cookbook: Love is Eating.
Paola’s cookbooks provide readers with modernized versions of healthy Italian dishes to help people stay fit while still feeling full and satisfied. Doctors around the world are discovering that the Mediterranean diet is the best way for people to stay healthy and fit. The Mamma Mia! Diet features dishes that include olive oil, fruits and vegetables, nuts, fish and poultry, whole grains, and even wine! This diet is the best way to indulge in all of the amazing flavors of Italy and you also learn the art of moderation. Paola even offers a great cooking class in Como, Italy. It is one of the best of Lake Como!
Another great way to travel to Italy through food is by eating different regional Italian meals. Savor delicious speck dumpling soup and feel like you’re in the Italian Alps (speck is a cured meat that is a staple in the Dolomites, but since it is hard to find speck outside of that area of Italy, I recommend substituting it for prosciutto); indulge in a hearty lasagna and pretend like you’re in a fairytale Northern Italian city like Bologna; make a fulfilling gnocchi pesto dinner and picture yourself in Cinque Terre; wrap up a homemade Margherita pizza and act like you’re in Naples; eat a light seafood pasta dish and jump into a Sicilian dream!
Listen to Italian Music
As you travel to Italy at home, it is best to also set the mood by playing serenading Italian music that will make you feel like you’re sitting in a courtyard café in a hidden alleyway in Rome. Every time we travel, there is always a specific song that we link to that certain trip. During the first moments we hear that song and like it, whether it be in restaurants, hotel lobbies, at a bar, on a road trip, or wherever you may think of, that song sticks to us. Whenever we hear that specific song again at home, it brings us back to that very place where we first heard it along with the emotions that we felt at that moment.
Most Italian music is old world and it features Opera, classical and melodic pieces. It is perfect to listen to while you are cooking, eating, reading, gardening, or even meditating! One of the most popular Italian music artists is Andrea Bocelli. His most iconic song is Time to Say Goodbye that most of us have heard before. You could find many other talented Italian musicians on Spotify and you could even create your very own playlist to use at any time you decide to have an Italian theme night at home.
Savor an Italian Dessert
There is nothing like a mouthwatering Italian dessert that goes well with the amazing dinner you wrapped up. One of the best things to do at home is bake and below is a list of delicious Italian desserts based off of regions in Italy:
- Tiramisù (Veneto) – A coffee-flavored Italian dessert made with ladyfingers that are dipped in coffee. It also includes eggs, sugar, mascarpone cheese, and cocoa powder.
- Sfogliatelle (Campania) – Otherwise known as the dessert version of a lobster tail, sfogliatelle is a shell-shaped Italian pastry that is filled with cream and topped with powdered sugar.
- Cannoli (Sicily) – A cannoli is a tube-shaped fried pastry shell that is filled with ricotta cheese and sugar. It could also be added with chocolate and pistachios and topped with powdered sugar.
- Panna Cotta (Piedmont) – This Italian dessert is made with sweetened cream that is thickened with gelatin. It usually contains coffee, vanilla, and other delicious flavors.
- Biscotti (Toscana) – An almond biscuit that is twice-baked and may include chocolate, pistachio, and other sweet flavors. It could also be dipped in chocolate!
Read a Travel Blog or Watch a Travel Vlog on Italy
Another great way to travel to Italy from home is by reading a blog on Italy or watching a vlog on YouTube. Travel bloggers and vloggers dive deep into their experiences. They bring you along on the journey and introduce you to hidden gems you wouldn’t think to see otherwise.
In addition, travel bloggers and vloggers are storytellers and they allow you to travel with them by feeling what they felt, tasting what they ate, interacting with who they came in contact with, journeying where they went and discovering why they loved the destination so much.
Plan Your Next Italy Trip
Lastly, the ultimate best way to travel to Italy from home is by actually booking your trip. There are quite a few Italy itineraries you could choose from and the most recommended ones are below. Check out the best cities and destinations to explore in Italy:
- Lake Como
- Northern Tuscany
- Cinque Terre
- Rome – Here’s an awesome 3-day itinerary to the Eternal City
- Southern Tuscany
- Amalfi Coast
- Mount Etna
- Best dishes in each Italian region
- A flawless Sicilian road trip itinerary
- Italy on a budget
- Best post-Covid19 destinations