When it comes to adventurous things to do in Italy, there’s a ton of activities to choose from! From discovering extreme Italy to something a little tamer, there’s many adventure activities in Italy to keep you pumped. I don’t think many visitors realise just how many thrills this beautiful country has to offer. So, time to pop down your cappuccino on the sidewalks of Rome, get off that boat floating down the canals in Venice and leave that wine tasting in Tuscany to later.
Whether you want to go solo or with your traveling buddies, here are my activities in Italy that I’m sure are gonna rock your world!
When it comes to cycling in Italy, you can go one of two ways. The relaxing option, for those of you who just want to get your blood flowing, is to cycle Italy through the countryside. Pedal from one winery to the next in sunny Tuscany, stopping to savor the flavors of local wines as you go.
Those looking for a more strenuous ride can take to the peaks for a mountain biking excursion! Whether visiting Sauze d’Oulx—a town that was part of the 2006 Winter Olympics—or near Aprica’s ski runs, you’ll find plenty of places to ride.
Hiking in Italy
Not every adventurous experience in Italy is set on the water. Hiking Italy is a great way to explore the stunning contrasts of this country. On sunny summer days, places like the Amalfi Coast or the Aeolian Islands make for great hikes. Cinque Terre hiking is right up there on my list!
You can explore local cliff-side villages, sandy beaches and peaceful harbours. But if you’re looking for raw nature, national parks fill Italy’s borders. I think the trekking trails at Gran Paradiso, Val Grande, Monti Sibillini, Pollino, Gargano or Stelvio, are some of the best hikes in Italy. They all offer great hiking in protected natural settings.
Because a good deal of this country lies near the water (it’s nearly surrounded, after all), there are a ton of places to kayak in Italy. While the Amalfi Coast may come to mind, that’s not the only place ideal for this relaxing sport. How about some Venice kayak action? In this wonderful canal-filled city, I really do recommend swapping the gondola to kayak Venice.
Another really great spot is the Tuscan Archipelago National Park. This protected marine area increases your chances of spotting Italian wildlife, and it has stellar views too.
Don’t forget your Lonely Planet guide to Italy!
Paragliding Italy and Hang Gliding Italy
Whether it’s paragliding in Italy or hang gliding lessons you seek, you can find them here! Admittedly, neither are incredibly common, but they are definite ways to get your adrenaline flowing on your next Italian vacation.
Soar through mountain valleys and over local lakes in the Alps or the Dolomites, or glide above the rolling hillsides of Tuscany’s Umbria. While I feel the views of jagged peaks and endless green hills can’t be beaten, thrill seekers can also drift over the shoreline of Sicily for a coastal gliding experience!
Snorkeling and Scuba Diving in Italy
If you’re itching to hop into the water and explore its mysteries, don’t be afraid. In addition to great kayaking spots, Italy is blessed with places to snorkel and scuba dive. Islands like Capri, Elba and Sicily offer crystal clear waters. There are a variety of nooks, crannies and sea caves to explore. Plus, colorful algae and coral, sea sponges and exotic fish fill the underwater environment.
If you want to ski Italy, The Alps and the Dolomites are both fantastic skiing destinations that are famous around the world. Situated near the Matterhorn peak and the Swiss border, Valle d’Aosta is another popular place for skiing in Italy.
Even when it’s snowing, you’ll find that the sun is shining in these Italian mountain ranges. Because neighboring countries like France and Switzerland are known for stellar slopes, I’ve found the mountainsides in Italy tend to be less crowded. Come over and ski here instead. It’s worth it!
Another water sport that travelers can try in Italy is wind surfing. This can be done on a lake or even on the ocean, depending on the winds, so consider all of your options. I became a big fan of windsurfing in Aruba and it can be picked up quite easily, so give it a go if you’re a newbie!
I think Lake Garda is probably the best place to try your hand at it, due to the non-stop winds, but don’t count out lakes like Cuomo, Iseo, Trasimeno and Idro. For oceanic options, Sardinia is ideal; both Porto Pollo and Murta Maria offer windsurfing. Campania and Elba are two other great options.
What are your adventurous things to do in Italy?
I hope you’re now feeling inspired to try out some kick ass adventurous things to do in Italy! There’s a ton of things to do in Italy for adventurers; even more than mentioned here. You can go bungee jumping in Italy, there’s some cool water parks in Italy too and for those of you who want to be strapped in and feel the thrills, there’s some decent amusement parks too. And if this is all just too much for you, there’s still plenty to be getting along with.