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Italy is one of the absolute dream destinations for travellers of all kinds. Campers, in particular, will find much more than their hearts desire in Italy. Some like their holidays simple and close to nature, others love luxury, children want to play in the sand by the sea, grandparents want to enjoy the evening sun in a vineyard. Whatever it may be, Italy has it in abundance, and those who love travelling by campervan can rent a campervan comfortably and without complications.
The land of the Dolce Vita really does have something to offer for all tastes and all campers: There are the fine white sandy beaches of southern Campania or Puglia, the sensual, gentle hills of Tuscany or the mountainous ruggedness of Trentino. Cultural highlights are the order of the day in Italy, whether concerts, theatre, architecture, poetry or folklore.
At the same time, it is easy in Italy to buy fresh, regional food at one of the countless markets and prepare it yourself in the camper van. To get some typical Italian inspiration, we recommend a visit to a quaint trattoria or osteria. Those who like it upscale will find excellent star and toque restaurants with the highest standards, especially in the larger cities and many tourist destinations.
As a campervan traveller, you enjoy the freedom to go wherever you want, whenever you want. Depending on your mood, you can spend a day at one of Italy's beautiful lakes, visit a historic city the next day and then plunge into the salty sea the day after that. The distances covered by campervan can be covered relatively quickly thanks to the very well-developed motorways.
The good news right from the start: Italy is a destination that has attractions and campervans for hire all year round. The snow-sure mountains in the north provide perfect conditions for a skiing holiday with a campervan, world-famous ski resorts such as the world championship village of Cortina d'Ampezzo in Veneto or Bormio in Lombardy are prime examples. Winter camping is very popular in Italy, so simply rent a winter-proof campervan, and you're ready to go.
Taking advantage of spring to travel to Italy and rent a campervan is the ideal holiday option for campers. The temperatures are warm but not hot, and nature explodes in all colours. Lake Maggiore, for example, which is shared by the regions of Piedmont, Lombardy and the Swiss Ticino, delights with its exceptionally mild climate. Here you can rent a campervan and marvel at the orange and lemon blossoms.
The summer in Italy lasts a long time, and here too, the main tourist seasons are not only for campers in July and August. But those who want to rent a campervan may also have the opportunity to take advantage of the low season in June. Some people think that this is the best time to travel, because campervans are cheaper to rent during this period, and the temperatures are already summery but not yet at their peak. In addition, it is quieter both on the roads and on the campsites, and there is more choice when renting a campervan in Italy.
Autumn is the most popular time to travel, especially for those interested in culinary delights. The reason for this is the white albatross truffle, which is sought and found from September into winter. The grape harvest in Tuscany and Piedmont is a must for connoisseurs of the noble grape varieties. Hiking enthusiasts love autumn to rent a campervan in Italy, as temperatures are pleasant while rich earthy colours are pleasing to the eye.
Italy consists of a proud 20 regions, each producing its own specialities and characteristics. We have selected the most popular areas for you, which have a lot to offer in every respect - especially, of course, for campers who want to rent a campervan. Here is a small selection of these paradises:
If you are drawn to the Adriatic, you can kill several birds with one stone. The sea slopes gently and shallowly along most stretches of coast, which at low tide can lead to kilometre-long walks in shallow water that are great fun, especially for children. In cities like Venice or Trieste, you will be delighted by cultural riches and yet be back at the water's edge in no time. Numerous excellent campsites stretch along the coast, some of which have even been named the most beautiful and exclusive in Italy - renting here leaves nothing to be desired.
The famous Tuscany is a particularly charming region that holds historical treasures as well as idyllic landscapes. Fertile hills line up like a sea of green tones; here, wine and all kinds of fruit and vegetables thrive under particularly favourable conditions. Typical of the landscape are the narrow, tall columnar cypresses, which give the landscape its characteristic features. Cultural highlights can be found in cities such as Florence, Pisa or Siena. Campervan rental in Italy has many faces.
The enchanting Emilia Romagna captivates with its contrasting landscape, which offers everything from the mountains to the sea. But it is not only the longest beach in Europe that awaits you here but also popular tourist towns such as Rimini, Riccione and Cattolica. However, above all, the country's interior is worth experiencing with a campervan because, in spas such as Salsomaggiore and Bagno di Romagna, relaxing wellness is written in capital letters. The mountainous Appenines reveal unforgettable moments for nature lovers, for example, when they rent a horse and experience all the happiness on earth between Parma and Piacenza.
Between the Dolomites and the Adriatic Sea also stretches the Po Valley, crisscrossed by rivers and watercourses that flow into the sea in the nature reserve of the Po Delta. Water is a big theme in Veneto, as the countless lagoons prove - in the most famous of all lies the unique and unmistakable Doge's city of Venice. In popular seaside resorts such as Jesolo, Bibione, Caorle or Cavallino, many international tourists take up residence. Much more impressive, however, are typical villages such as Monselice, Asolo, Bassano del Grappa or Abano, where you can feel the authentic life of Italy - a top tip for campervan rental in Italy.
The land at the foot of the mountains, Piedmont, borders France and Switzerland and is home to the highest glaciers in Italy, which is why it is also an extremely popular ski area. But the landscape of Piedmont is varied and therefore also very hilly, which makes it a famous wine-growing region. In addition to untouched nature and cultural landscapes rich in tradition, Piedmont also has the scent of the big city. Turin is the automobile capital of Italy and is home to numerous important industrial centres, but of course, also countless cultural institutions, without which nothing is possible in Italy.
One of Italy's largest regions is Lombardy, whose capital is the fashionable city of Milan. Scenically diverse and historically significant, this fertile land is also known for its picturesque lakes, such as Lake Garda, Lake Como and Lake Maggiore. Of course, Lombardy's special significance comes from its successful mix of culture, economy and historical significance. Incidentally, the excellent sparkling wines of Franciacorta thrive in the extensive hilly landscape of Lombardy - certainly a destination to be enjoyed in a campervan.
The further south you go, the more colourful and bright the colours become. At the very bottom, where the Italian boot turns into its heel, lies unforgettable Puglia, with its magnificent beaches of sand, rock or gravel - depending on the coastline. On the Gargano, the spur of the boot, you will find not only untouched nature and national parks, wild forests, salt flats and lakes, but also the enchanting Tremiti Islands, a tiny archipelago that forms its own microcosm. Enchanted grottos among craggy rocks stimulate the imagination and never let it get boring for young and older explorers.
At the tip of Italy's boot, washed by two seas, the Ionian and the Tyrrhenian, lies the southernmost region of the Italian mainland, Calabria, steeped in legend. Historic and prehistoric sites abound here, for people have lived here since the Stone Age. Hotly contested and often besieged by foreign cultures, Calabria once belonged to the Byzantine Empire. The cultural mix has left its mark in the hearty cuisine and the Greek-influenced dialect.
As Italy's largest island, you travel through a world of its own in Sicily anyway, especially by campervan. The Strait of Messina separates Sicily from the Italian mainland, and both the Ionian and Tyrrhenian Seas lap the proud island, famous for its clear waters in incredible shades of blue and green. Some say Sicily is one of the most beautiful islands in the world, and such a statement would first have to be refuted, which no one wants to do. If you rent a campervan in Italy, you take the ferry from Reggio Calabria to Sicily.
Undeniably, Sardinia is also one of the most beautiful islands in the world. Situated in the middle of the Tyrrhenian Sea, about the same height as Rome, the jewel with its emerald waters and white sandy beaches seems to be just waiting for campers. The heart of the island is wild and unspoilt and therefore home to wildlife, birds of prey and even wild horses. The beaches of the Costa Smeralda and the historic harbour towns of Porto Cervo or Porto Rotondo enchant with their unique flair, warm hospitality and the possibility to rent boats.
If you are lucky enough to be travelling with a camper van, you can enjoy total independence either somewhere in the middle of nowhere or right in the heart of the inner-city hustle and bustle. Of course, it is necessary to rent a designated pitch at a campsite to spend the night, as the carabinieri are not lenient with wild campers, but temporarily you can stop and enjoy almost anywhere. Those who prefer to know that their caravan is well parked can enjoy their freedom and unrestricted mobility by car or public transport, which runs regularly and almost punctually in Italy.
Who wouldn't want to rent a caravan or campervan in Italy on their next holiday? The procedure is uncomplicated, but there are, of course, details worth knowing. First of all, you need to find out how far the airport or train station is from your destination. Here is a brief overview of the most important means of transport:
Italy has many airports that either serve international flights or transport travellers within the country. Some of the most important airports are listed below:
Travelling by train is very popular in Italy, and rail transport is correspondingly well developed. Without claiming to be exhaustive, the following is a list of important railway stations:
Tolls are charged on Italian motorways, while motorways are free of charge. For both caravans and campervans, the number of axles is used to calculate the toll at the toll stations on the motorways and when using tunnels. In addition, there are traffic restricted zones (ZTL) in Italian cities, so if you want to drive your campervan directly into the centres of Milan, Bologna or Palermo, you have to pay.
At Italian petrol stations, there is either petrol service ("servito"), or you fill up yourself ("fai da te"), whereby self-service is usually a few cents cheaper. Automatic petrol pumps are also available, accepting cash or credit card payments; you can recognise them by the inscription "aperto 24 ore". The convenient petrol service is widespread; you don't need to get out of the car, just let the "benzinaio" fill up. If you want to fill up, say "Il pieno, per favore".