• Cheryl Jones

Five Hidden Gems To Visit For An Ideal Vacation In Italy

Updated: Aug 7, 2021

“One of the great joys of traveling through Italy is discovering firsthand that it is, indeed, a dream destination.” — Debra Levinson.

A trip to Italy usually involves visiting Rome or Venice and checking out the famous islands of Capri and Sicily. Still, there’s so much more to Italy than just the popular spots. Italy has more than 400 islands, 350 sea islands, over 100 clear water lagoons, a dozen lake islands, and some great river islands, making it one of Europe’s best destinations for couples and honeymooners.

Suppose you’re planning a vacation in Italy. You could either stick to the famous, mainstream islands and cities or take the road less traveled for a unique experience and discover Italy’s hidden gems and best-kept secrets.

Favignana Island

The largest of the Aegadian Islands, Favignana boasts a pristine, 9-kilometer shortline filled with the most exotic beaches you’ll ever see. Remote and scintillating, this butterfly-shaped island is also the closest to Sicily and a scenic ferry ride away, making it the perfect place for a luxury honeymoon.

If you’re after a sunkissed beach vibe, Favignana has plenty of unique spots for you to relax in. Cala D’Azur flaunts a scenic landscape with turquoise blue waters, soft sand, and rocky shores. This is the perfect place to kick back with a cocktail, bask in the sun, with a stunning view in front of you.

Bue Marino, a fabulous cove in Favignana, has the bluest waters you will ever see. Ideal for sunbathing, swimming, and simply relaxing, this spot makes for a lovely day out. You will also find a food truck nearby with the most delicious tuna sandwiches and refreshing lemony granitas.


Neighboring Rome off the coast of Lazio in Italy, this beautiful island stays sunny and picturesque all year long. As a result, Ponza sees more Italians than foreign tourists on any given day. It is unpretentiously elegant with a plethora of luxurious beach-facing boutique hotels and lounges and mesmerizing beach coves.

Scuba divers and snorkelers love Ponza for its clear waters and rocky coves. However, if you wish to explore marine life off the coast of this island, Cala dell’Acqua and Le Formiche are worth visiting. Cala Felce, embellished with yellow sand and towering, golden rock formations, creates an atmosphere nothing short of spectacular.

If you’re seeking a more romantic travel vibe, check into the Chiaia di Luna hotel in Ponzo. It offers charming rooms, a state-of-the-art restaurant, and a fantastic terrace lounge where you can have a sublime sundowner.

Monte Isola

The most famous lake island in all of Europe, Monte Isola is Italy’s finest island destination. This island is best explored on foot. So if you like hiking and trekking, Monte Isola offers you a slew of exciting hiking trails.

Walk up to the island’s highest point, the Sanctuary of the Madonna della Ceriola, for a breathtaking view of the lake.

The island is also home to some of the prettiest lake-facing villas with adjoining lush and private gardens. Staying at the Locanda La Canogola, for instance, is almost like living out a fairy-tale. Perfect for families and couples, this is one of the many properties on Monte Isola that will make sure you have the best honeymoon.

You can’t be in Italy and not have pizza. One of Monte Isola’s many authentic eateries, Ristorante Pizzeria La Dorada Lago, is known for its Montisolan cuisine, wood-oven pizzas, and seafood delicacies. Aesthetically, this restaurant is very native Italian, warm, and beautiful. It overlooks the lake and is not one you’d want to miss.


Salina is where sophistication meets tranquility. If you’re looking for a vacation with a touch of elegance and a carefree atmosphere, the island of Salina offers you the best of both worlds. Sprawling with an opulent landscape, it is known for its natural freshwater springs, towering grapevines, olive farms, and fruit trees.

The beaches on this island feature rocks, coves, pebbles, and more. Salina is a great place to relax and unwind, with casual eateries and fun beach bars to explore.

For the honeymooners, Cinque Balconi Hotel in Salina is like heaven on earth. This boutique hotel used to be a classic 19th-century winery. It’s got a lovely garden with lemon trees all around. The hotel is decorated with antique furniture with balconies in all rooms facing the sea. To top it off, you also have access to an outdoor shower to set the mood for an exciting romantic date.


Neighboring the Bay of Naples, Procida may look a lot like Capri with its candy-colored buildings and dotted boat harbors, but it’s a lot less crowded and touristy. Relatively undiscovered and unexplored, this Italian island is quiet, serene, and sets itself apart from the usual islands in Italy. More than travelers, you’ll see local fishermen here, going about their daily routines. If you’re looking to live off the grid and off the land for a bit, Procida is the perfect island for some alone “us” time. Procida is known for its black or dark sand beaches that are almost always deserted, giving you all the privacy in the world.

While the streets in Procida are covered with colorful bougainvillea, the beaches such as Pozzo Vecchio and Lido di Procida are surrounded by tall cacti, dense olive tree clusters, and remarkable cliff faces. So if you’re in the mood for some lip-smacking lobster platters and seafood dishes, take a ferry ride to La Conchiglia.

Because Procida doesn’t see many visitors, it only has a handful of hotels around Marina Grande and Marina di Chiaiolella. But they have good amenities and amazing rooms with views. So the best way to explore Procida is to take a walk through the small lanes and find your unique spots.

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