Beat the Heat in Italy this Summer

It’s no secret that Italy can get HOT in the summer months. Especially in cities and also in the south. But summer is often the only time that many people can visit; and it’s no reason to cancel your trip! I’ve compiled some quick tips for beating the summer heat in Italy so you can stay cool while exploring the best country in the world!

1. Plan Activities for Early Morning or Late Afternoon

The heat in Italy is most intense between 11 AM and 4 PM. Plan your sightseeing, especially outdoor activities, for early in the morning or late in the afternoon. This way, you can take advantage of the cooler parts of the day and avoid the midday heat.

Exploring Venice early in the morning

My favorite way to explore Italy in the summer is to get up and out the door by 6:00 am while most of the city is still sleeping. Especially in places like Rome, Florence, or Venice, where it’s generally packed by 9:00 am, its really quite the sight to have these busy places all to yourself and with bearable heat!

This is also my favorite time to get out and for a photoshoot. I always book with Flytographer for my shoots. You can learn more about that here.

Rest or nap in the afternoon, then head back out around 5:00 pm when the worst of the heat has subsided.

2. Stay Hydrated

The best way to beat the heat and stay safe in Italy in the summer is to drink plenty of water! Luckily the water in Italy is safe to drink.

Always carry a reusable water bottle with you. In Italy, you’ll find public fountains, especially in major cities, where you can refill your bottle with fresh, cold water. Drinking plenty of water is crucial to keep yourself hydrated and energized.

I really like this collapsable water bottle that I can squish down when its empty which also means it takes up less room when I’m packing.

3. Dress Appropriately

I see a lot of people making the mistake of wearing polyester dresses or jeans in Italy during the summer. That’s a big no-no unless you enjoy sweating and chafing.

It’s ideal to wear lightweight, breathable clothing made from natural fabrics like cotton or linen. Light colors are better as they reflect the sun’s rays. I prefer dresses and skirts because they’re much more breathable and comfortable for me.

I also love cotton gauze sets like these. They don’t wrinkle and they’re nice and flowy.

Don’t forget a wide-brimmed hat and sunglasses to protect your face and eyes from the sun.

You can find some more tips about what to pack for your trip to Italy here.

4. Bring a fan & use a wet scarf

Even when I’m wearing the coolest clothing possible, sometimes it’s just not enough! I like to bring a portable fan and a small silk scarf that I can get wet and tie around my neck. I usually carry a small folding fan, but recently bought this rechargeable fan, which is awesome. It can be used in your hotel as well.

5. Get indoors during the mid-day heat

Embrace the local custom of taking a midday break. Many Italians retreat indoors during the hottest part of the day, and you should too. Use this time to relax in your hotel, enjoy a long, leisurely lunch, or visit indoor attractions like museums and galleries (if they are air conditioned). Most museums are temperature controlled, so it’s a great choice to beat the heat.

6. Enjoy Italy’s Gelato and Refreshing Drinks

Not that I need an excuse to eat gelato, but summer is definitely the best time to treat yourself! You can learn how to find the best gelato in Italy here.

It’s a delicious way to beat the heat and try different flavors. Also, enjoy other refreshing drinks like granita (a semi-frozen dessert made from sugar, water, and various flavorings – think thick, better tasting slushie).

7. Get into the water

The beach in Monterosso al Mar in Cinque Terre in the summer

Italy has no shortage of lakes and beaches. Get in the water where possible to cool down!

Check out the best lakes here and some of the best beaches here and here.

8. Visit cooler areas in Italy

No one says you have to go to Florence, Rome, and Venice in the summer. If you truly want to avoid the heat, I recommend you venture north to the Dolomites where you’ll find a nice temperate summer awaiting you. You can read more about the Dolomites here.

When I traveled with my kids in Italy during the summer, these tips really helped us manage the heat and still have a fantastic time exploring. Don’t forget to share your experiences and new tips with your readers on your travel sites! Safe travels!

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