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Packing List for Italy: The Best Summer Packing Guide

by | May 12, 2024 | Europe, Featured, Travel Tips | 16 comments

Are you heading to Italy this summer? Stop stressing about what you should/shouldn’t pack. This post is a complete packing list for Italy, so you will have everything you need without overpacking.

The Best Packing List for Italy

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One of the most important things I’ve learned about traveling to Italy is not to overpack. This was a hard lesson for me, as I am somewhat of an over-packer (ok, not somewhat I AM an over-packer). But nothing is worse than trying to manage the weight of one (or two) massive suitcases as you navigate steep, cliff-side staircases and ancient cobblestone streets. This post is all about everything you need and don’t need for an Italian summer vacation. Keep reading for a complete packing list for Italy.

Summer Weather in Italy

The weather during the summer months in Italy is quite warm and humid. Average temperatures are in the upper 70s and can reach close to 90 degrees Fahrenheit during midday. Rome and Florence can be especially brutal this time of year.

Northern Italy tends to have cooler temperatures than Southern Italy. Temperatures here range from 65-85 degrees. The summer months in the north will also see more rainy days than anywhere else in the country. So, if your itinerary includes any part of Northern Italy, you will want to pack a rain jacket and a warm layer or two just in case. Continue reading for more ideas on what kind of clothing you will want to pack for your summer trip.

Summer Clothing Items for Italy

packing list for a summer trip to Italy

The first thing that came to mind as I started packing for my first trip to Italy, was “What do I pack that will help me fit in and not stand out as a tourist?” Over the years, I have learned that having a neutral and versatile wardrobe is key. You could even categorize these pieces as a part of your summer capsule wardrobe.

Another important tip is to take items made from lightweight fabrics, as this will help keep you cool in the hot Italian sun. Think linen and cotton. If your plans include visiting a special place for dinner, you might want to consider taking a nicer outfit in a silk fabric.

Even though the temperatures will be hot, you will want to take some long sleeve shirts to put on for when you visit any religious sites. The dress code for places like the Vatican is that shoulders and knees are expected to be covered. I like to take something with me in my travel bag to temporarily cover up with. A pashmina is another great choice.

Italians also only wear their athletic wear for working out or participating in athletics. If you don’t want to stand out as a tourist, it’s a good idea to save the leggings and other athleisure for travel days.

Lastly, I recommend leaving any clothing or baseball caps with your favorite sports teams or universities at home and anything in camo print. This type of apparel will quickly mark you as a tourist, and you’ll become an instant target for scammers and pickpockets.

Casual Shirts

Take a mix of long and short sleeve shirts with you. They are great for layering and tossing in your bag for when you need to cover your shoulders.

Tank Tops

This tank top is classy and comes in several different colors. It would be great paired with linen pants, shorts or a beautiful skirt. I also like that it can be dressed up or down.

Dresses

This dress would be perfect for wine tasting in Tuscany.

If you’re looking for a dress to wear in the evenings, this off-the-shoulder dress is a great option. It comes in several different colors too.

Matching Sets

I love this adorable linen set. It’s perfect for sightseeing on a warm day. The set comes in several different colors and can be worn together or separately.

Long Pants

A pair of linen pants are perfect for days when you are doing cultural exploration and visiting churches and cathedrals. They are lightweight enough to keep you cool and follow the dress code of covered knees.

Beachwear

This cover up is perfect. It provides enough coverage to be worn as a dress and still lightweight and breathable for the beach.

Light Jacket

A light weight jacket or blazer is great for evenings. They are also extremely versatile and can be dressed up or down.

Pashmina

A pashmina is wonderful to use as a shawl when visiting places like the Vatican. It also makes a great lightweight blanket on the plane.

Shoes to Pack for Italy

Comfort is key when it comes to footwear. If you’re visiting major cities like Rome, Venice, and Milan you will be doing a lot of walking and exploring. Don’t be surprised if you clock over 20,000 steps in one day. With that in mind, pack a pair of extremely comfortable shoes that are great for walking. Actually, you might want to take two pairs.

Unless you have a fancy event to attend, like a wedding, save space in your suitcase and leave the 4-inch stilettos at home. You will not need them. Outfits can be dressed up with a pair of elevated sandals or flats. Wedges are a good alternative if you want to add height without the risk of getting a stiletto caught on the cobblestone.

You will want to pack a pair of flip flops, especially if you are visiting any of the coastal villages in Cinque Terre or somewhere along the Amalfi Coast. Flip flops are great for the beach, but terrible for sightseeing as they offer no support.

Sneakers

These sneakers are perfect for days when you will be doing a lot of walking and sightseeing. Not only are they comfortable, but they are cute too. With almost 2,000 5-star ratings, so you know they have to be good!

Sandals

Reef makes really comfortable sandals. I like these because of the buckle strap and the slight platform adds a little height.

Flats

These cute little flats are comfortable and stylish and come in a bunch of different colors. I really like how they can be dressed up or down.

Flip Flops

I tend to go with Reef for flip flops because they are comfortable and lightweight.

Dress Shoes

After a long day of walking, the last thing I want to do is put on a pair of heels. Never mind the fact that trying to navigate the cobblestone streets in stilettos is a twisted ankle waiting to happen. I think these strappy sandals are perfect for a nice evening out.

Accessories to Pack for Italy

Don’t overlook the power of great accessories. The right accessories will elevate your outfits and allow you to mix and match different pieces creating more looks with fewer items. The accessories you take should be practical and inexpensive. Please do not take any items of value, monetary or sentimental, just in case it is lost or stolen.

Sunglasses

These sunglasses are affordable and really cute.

Hat

I love this hat because it’s not too big. It can be worn at the beach or sightseeing in the city.

Beach Bag

If you’re Italy itinerary includes some beach or pool days, you might consider taking a cute straw tote bag, like this one. It would also be great for strolling through a farmer’s market.

Evening Bag

This is such a beautiful bag for an evening out. It comes in many different colors and has an interior zipper pocket to hold small valuables safe.

Crossbody Bag

A crossbody bag is essential for days when you are walking around crowded cities and areas where there are a lot of pickpockets. This bag is reversible and can hold all of your necessities.

Travel Essentials for a Summer Trip to Italy

packing list for Italy in the summer

There are certain items that I consider travel essentials. These are items I take with me on every trip abroad and recommend to all my clients. From long flights to cross country train rides, these must-have items will make your travels that much better.  

Reusable Water Bottle

There are plenty of fountains in Rome for you to fill up a water bottle. Take advantage of the free water and stay hydrated with this reusable water bottle.

Portable Charger

The portable charger by Anker is one of the best available. Its super slim design makes it easy to tuck into the pocket of a carry-on. It also can charge devices multiple times before needing to be charged.

Power Adapter

This power adapter and converter is a bit bulky but it has space for 7 different electronic devices.

Face Sunscreen

This sunscreen is the best.

Face Masks, Hand Cream and Lip Mask

Flying can dry out my skin, so I always travel with hydrating face masks. hand cream and a good lip mask.

Bose Noise Canceling Headphones

I’m a light sleeper. The softest noise can keep me up, so I find sleeping on a plane to be very tough. These noise-canceling headphones work great and have helped me get a little bit of rest on those long-haul flights.

Sleep Mask

This weighted eye mask is amazing. The weighted beads provide the right amount of pressure to relax the nerves around the eyes to provide maximum relaxation. It also does a fantastic job blocking out light.

Compression Packing Cubes

I am a big fan of compression packing cubes and have been for some time now, but the compression packing cubes are on another level. They are so good. First, they keep everything organized. Second, they create even more space than the regular ones. When I travel, I like to use one for each type of clothing I am packing- one cube will be for workout wear, another for casual outfits, a third for dressy outfits, and a fourth for pajamas and undergarments. 

Compression Socks

Compression socks help combat swelling and promote circulation which reduces the risk of blood clots. They are especially helpful on long-haul flights when sitting for long periods of time.

Apple AirTags

It’s no secret that there have been unfortunate issues with flying recently. From delays to cancelations, and when that happens, luggage can go missing. As someone who always checks her bags, I feel much more confident knowing where my luggage is now that I have the Apple AirTags. I  put one in each piece of luggage so I can always keep track of them. I highly recommend all travelers get these. 

Hand Sanitizer

Who says hand sanitizer has to come in a boring bottle and smell terrible? It doesn’t. Stay healthy and germ-free with these beautiful hand sanitizers from Noshinku.

Travel Insurance

Insurance is one of those necessary evils. It’s needed for nearly every aspect of our lives, and travel is no different. Make sure you are protected while you travel and purchase a travel insurance plan.

Travel insurance isn’t just for a credit or refund if the trip is canceled. It can also include, lost luggage, delays causing parts of the trip to be missed, and most importantly health insurance. Many people don’t know that the health insurance they have at home does not work in another country. Travel insurance is the most important part of the trip, yet often the most overlooked. 

Hanging Toiletry Bag

I can pack more in this toiletry bag than I was able to do in my previous one, and it takes up much less space in my suitcase. I’m not asking how that works, I’m just glad it does. I also love that I can hang it up, so I don’t have to unpack every single thing. 

Travel Laundry Bag

One of the least fun parts about traveling is all the laundry that needs to be done when you get home. Before investing in a smell-proof travel laundry bag, I would have to wash all the clothes I bought even if I hadn’t worn them. The mumi travel laundry bag keeps he dirty clothes separated from the clean ones, and it truly is smell-proof. 

First Aid Kit

A first aid kit is a must-have for all travelers. It should be lightweight, waterproof, and filled with plenty of band-aids, pain relievers, and anything else needed to fix a minor ailment. 

Top Packing Tips

As a professional travel advisor, who travels and helps others travel for a living, I have learned many great packing tips and tricks through the years. First, if you are checking a bag, make sure that you pack a carry-on with the following items:

  • Copies of all travel documents
  • Prescription Medication
  • Chargers for your electronic devices
  • A change of clothes
  • Basic toiletries

Another important packing tip is to make sure you have the right bag and that it’s in working condition. I will never forget the trip I used a duffle bag as my carry-on, and it was a miserable experience. While the bag was beautiful, it was horrible to lug around the crowded airports. Also, check your luggage a few weeks before your trip and make sure it’s working properly- the wheels roll, zippers zip, and the top handle raises and lowers.

Before every trip, I lay out all my outfits with the proper undergarments, accessories, and shoes. Then I make a list of everything. This helps ensure I don’t forget anything. Another great idea would be to take photos of each outfit.

Lastly, take an empty suitcase or big bag with you. Chances are you will want to purchase souvenirs in Italy, like delicious olive oil, leather goods, wine, or clothing. Having an extra suitcase for these items will make packing for your return so much easier.

The Perfect Packing List for Italy\

What to pack for a Summer Trip to Italy

There is so much to think about when preparing for a trip to Italy. Figuring out what to pack can add unnecessary stress and it’s completely avoidable. So, I hope you found these packing tips helpful. Do you have any other great tips to share? I’d love to hear them in the comments below.

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16 responses to “Packing List for Italy: The Best Summer Packing Guide”

  1. Caroline Avatar

    How perfect! I’m actually flying to Italy this Wednesday and I haven’t packed yet… I think I’ll just pack using this so I don’t have to stress myself out wondering what I might’ve forgotten. Thanks! 😀

  2. BetterTravelWithFood Avatar

    I love the dresses and shirts. Thanks for the shopping and packing inspiration!

  3. Stephanie Avatar

    Great options for summer weather travel clothing! Those reef sandals look comfy!

  4. Phelize Avatar

    love this article! As someone who’s been to Italy, I wish I had seen this blog post before! Definitely using these tips for my next trip.

  5. Hari Avatar

    Awesome packing list for the trip to Italy. Love the fact that you’ve included so many useful tips which is much appreciated!

  6. Laurie Griggs Avatar

    Pinned this for future ready as a trip to Italy is on my bucket list in near future. Good shopportunities!

  7. Olga Avatar

    I love Italy, and I was curious what you pack to go there. I love your selection of tops and dresses! Thank you for the ideas.

  8. Jasmine Avatar

    What a great invaluable packing resource! Thank you for the thorough and practical suggestions on the clothing, shoes and everything in between! I swear by BagSmart’s toiletry bags! They are so well made and carries a lot of stuff!

  9. Sharyn McCullum Avatar

    Great ideas to pack for a trip to Italy in summer. I love the sandals and dresses – they are casual yet stylish. I will fit right in on my next trip to Italy.

  10. Sonia Avatar
    Sonia

    What a great packing list! The Pashmina is a great addition–such a versatile item.

  11. Fransic verso Avatar

    You shared great recommendations, these are necessary for traveling but I like the outfit combinations list you put together.

  12. Janet Avatar

    Great list. I was just looking for white tennis shoes tonight. And the cosmetic bag is one I already own and absolutely LOVE it.

  13. Yvonne Avatar

    This packing list has such cute clothes! And those compression socks – I have them and love them! Great list.

  14. Rosemary Palmer Avatar
    Rosemary Palmer

    Italy is slowly coming to the top of my list to visit. But your travel tips and great for any of my USA travels.

  15. Anna Avatar

    Your packing list is great and will be handy for traveling to other European countries too. I really liked the idea of using Apple AirTag while traveling – might be so useful when on the go with the kids. Thanks for sharing!

  16. Stephanie Avatar
    Stephanie

    Your packing lis tis perfect! I’ll use it next time I travel!

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