All the Highlights from Our 3 Week Trip to Italy and Greece

Have you ever traveled to or dreamed of visiting Italy or Greece? These 2 destinations have always been on my vacation bucket list and I can’t wait to share the highlights from our 3 week trip to Italy and Greece with you.

view of the Amalfi coast - trip to Italy and Greece

As an Amazon affiliate, I earn from qualifying purchases at no extra cost to you. My blog contains other affiliate links as well for your convenience. Click here to read my privacy policy.

I have been promising you a blog post with our highlights from the Italy and Greece trip we took in May.

It’s safe to say that I am NOT a world traveler. So when we started planning our trip to Italy and Greece before the pandemic I can’t tell you how excited I was.

This was seriously a trip of a lifetime for me. And it did not disappoint.

There are a few destinations that I will give you much more detail on in future separate posts. I just couldn’t include all the information here. So stay tuned for more on Venice and Carpi Italy, and Mykonos and Athens, Greece.

selfie in Mykonos, Greece - trip to Italy and Greece

We packed a lot of things into our 19-day trip to Italy and Greece!

We started in Venice, Italy, and stayed for a few days before moving on to Ravena where the cruise ship was docked.

Next, we went to Greece and Turkey on the cruise ship and traveled to Italy by bus, train, ferry, and water taxi before and after the cruise.

My husband and I went with a group of friends which was great for planning private excursion tours because there were 7 of us. This was the best thing about having a group and I would highly recommend it!

the canals in Venice, Italy

It was an early and exhausting morning as we left our house at 4:30 AM and headed to the SeaTac Airport to catch our 7:00 AM flight.

We laid over in Newark for a couple of hours and then we were off to Venice, Italy.

wooden boat water taxis in Venice, Italy

Our flight arrived in Venice around 9:00 AM. I was exhausted since I’ve never really traveled long distances and it’s hard for me to sleep on a plane. I was dragging.

wooden boat water taxi in Venice, Italy

The only way to get to our hotel in Venice was to take a water taxi. This wooden boat was so beautiful! I didn’t expect a water taxi to look like this…it was a very pleasant surprise!

boat going under a bridge in Venice, Italy

We experienced a gorgeous scenic one-hour water tour of Venice. I was so overwhelmed by the old buildings and canals that I had a bit of a teary moment. I couldn’t believe I was here.

Venice, Italy canals and gondola

And of course, there were gondolas everywhere you looked throughout the waterways of Venice.

Needless to say, this incredible experience snapped me out of being tired and energized me. I was ready to go!

sidewalk café overlooking the water in Venice, Italy

The outdoor cafes were amazing. There was just such a romantic feel overlooking the canals.

People have asked me if the canals had a bad odor. When we were there in May it was not too hot yet and I didn’t notice any smell.

posing in a Venice, Italy hotel

We made it to the Bauer Hotel dock and checked in. We physically stayed in the Residenza Grunwald next store which is part of the same hotel.

My hubby made me pose for a picture in front of the wallpaper in the lobby area. Can you believe how well my outfit matched the wallpaper?

sidewalk cafes in San Marcos square Venice, Italy

Venice Highlights

Often known in English as St. Mark’s Square, the Piazza San Marco was the first place we sat down to have a bite to eat at one of the outdoor cafes.

posing at a sidewalk café in Venice, Italy - trip to Italy and Greece

Here I am, waiting for my first bite of authentic Italian food.

Venice, Italy sidewalk café

I’m so glad we went to Venice in May. The temperature was perfect in the seventies and the crowds were not as bad as they usually are in the summer months.

Outdoor café in San Marcos Square Venice, Italy

The square was always busy and we often had to wait for a table.

It was hard to get used to the European way of dining. People would sit at a table for hours and not get asked to leave as we do here in the U.S.

St. Mark's Basilica cathedral church in Venice, Italy

St. Mark’s Basilica Cathedral church was stunning.

St. Mark's Basilica cathedral church in Venice, Italy - trip to Italy and Greece

I couldn’t get up close because of the work being done on the building.

riding on the gondolas in Venice, Italy - trip to Italy and Greece

Let me ask you…what is the first thing you think of when you hear “Venice, Italy”?

Venice Italy gondolas

Is it the canals or a gondola? We couldn’t leave the city without riding a gondola. It was so much fun and I highly recommend it.

NOTE: I have so many pictures and experiences I want to share with you that I couldn’t possibly fit them all in this post. I am working on a separate Venice, Italy blog post that will be published soon.

cruise ship and smelling the flowers - trip to Italy and Greece

After spending a couple of days in Venice we took a water taxi and then a bus to Ravena where the Celebrity cruise ship Constellation was docked.

cruise ship for Italy and Greece 10 day trip

I don’t have much to say about the cruise because…

  • We didn’t spend a lot of time on the ship.
  • The ship was only filled to 30% capacity.
  • There was a staff shortage so both the entertainment and food were lacking a bit from the times “before Covid”.
ruins in Olympia, Greece - trip to Italy and Greece

Our first stop on the cruise was Katakolon, Greece.

We took a private tour to the archaeological site of Olympia in a valley in the Peloponnesus.

ruins in Olympia, Greece - trip to Italy and Greece

Here we saw the remains of the sports structures used in the Olympic Games held every four years starting in 776 B.C.

ruins in Olympia, Greece

Not only is Olympia home of the ancient Olympic Games but also the former site of the great statue of Zeus which has been ranked as one of the Seven Wonders of the World.

ruins in Olympia, Greece
ruins in Olympia, Greece
ruins in Olympia, Greece
ruins in Olympia, Greece

We learned so much about Greek history during the tour and I would highly encourage this tour.

sidewalk café in Olympia Greece - trip to Italy and Greece

There are so many quaint outdoor cafes in Greece.

gelato store - trip to Italy and Greece

And the gelato is amazing!

I don’t even have a picture to share with you.

This beautiful place was at the top of my bucket list. I was so excited to see the sandy white beaches, white buildings, and blue roofs.

The plan was to…

  • go sightseeing in the town of Oia
  • visit two wineries (Venetsianos and Santos)
  • have lunch at Venetsianos on top of the cliffs with a vista view
  • go to Santos

Unfortunately, plans don’t always turn out the way you want them to.

We did not get to go to Santorini due to the high winds. It wasn’t safe enough to tender to the port. I wish I would have had some amazing experiences to share with you but maybe next time.

a port in Kusadasi, Turkey

Ephesus, Turkey

The cruise ship docked in Kusadasi, Turkey where most of my friends in our group went on a private tour of Ephesus.

Basilica of Saint John Turkey

Here is a view of the Basilica of Saint John located in Ephesus.

ship in the port of Kusadasi, Turkey

We decided to stay on the ship that day. Here’s a view from our cabin balcony.

the white castle in Thessalonika, Greece

Thessaloniki, Greece

Thessaloniki is the second-largest city in Greece.

We didn’t make any excursion plans at this port so it was low-key.

the white castle in Thessalonika, Greece

We went to see The White Tower on the seafront which has a view of the entire city and the Mediterranean Sea.

inside the white castle in  Thessalonika, Greece
posing for a picture in Thessalonika, Greece - trip to Italy and Greece

Walking along the Beach Promenade and Aristotle Square was a lot of fun and there were so many incredible places to dine.

Thessaloniki International Exhibition Center

Here’s a view of the Thessaloniki International Exhibition Center.

Without dating myself too much, the structure reminded me of the TV cartoon show, The Jetsons.

Kapani Market in Thessalonika

We spent quite a bit of time at the Kapani Market in Thessaloniki.

flower market - trip to Italy and Greece

The market had anything you could want. Flowers, produce, fish, meat, household items, olives, nuts…you get the picture.

olives in the Kapani Market in Thessalonika - trip to Italy and Greece
Mykonos, Greece

This was my favorite stop in Greece. I mean, if you can’t go to Santorini, Mykonos is the next best thing.

There were a lot of white buildings and beautiful blue trim. I loved how charming this town was.

stairs in Mykonos, Greece - trip to Italy and Greece

The most adorable doors and window shutters, stone pathways, and funky little stairs.

seaside in Mykonos, Greece

The water is so clear and blue here in Mykonos.

stone pathways in Mykonos, Greece - trip to Italy and Greece

The stone walking paths to stores, bars, and restaurants were really narrow and so fun to wander about.

white stairs and blue trim in Mykonos, Greece - trip to Italy and Greece

NOTE: There is so much more I want to share with you, including the restaurants we found and more water views that you will be able to see in a separate post all about Mykonos soon.

ruins in Athens, Greece

This was the busiest and most physical day of the entire trip. There is so much to see in Athens, the historical capital city of Greece.

We had a private tour of the Parthenon, Acropolis, and the Acropolis Museum. And of course, there was a fabulous Greek lunch.

view of the Acropolis in Athens, Greece

The Acropolis, an ancient citadel in the center of Athens, Greece, can be seen throughout the city.

It contains the remains of several historical ancient buildings with the Parthenon being the most famous.

view of the city Athens Greece - trip to Italy and Greece
Odeon of Herodes Atticus, Athens, Greece

The Odeon of Herodes Atticus, above, is a stone Roman theater structure.

Acropolis museum Caryatides

Acropolis Museum

Artifacts found on the Acropolis and surrounding slopes can be found in the Acropolis Museum.

Here you can see the Caryatides or Maidens of Karzai.

I have many more pictures from the Museum to share in the Athens, Greece post coming up soon.

Tomb of the Unknown soldier ceremony Athens, Greece

Tomb of the Unknown Soldier

After the museum, we visited the Presidential Mansion in Athens where we watched the Presidential Guard. This is a ceremonial infantry unit that guards the Tomb of the Unknown Soldier and mansion.

This is one of the most exotic Greek Islands and is in the Ionian Sea. Zakynthos is well known for its sandy white beaches, including Shipwreck Beach and the most turquoise waters.

The blue caves are the main attraction here. From everything I’ve read, Zakynthos has the most gorgeous views and plenty of opportunities for the perfect picture.

Sadly, I was not getting around very well from an accident the previous day so I borrowed a wheelchair from the cruise ship and we went to a wonderful outdoor lunch at a nearby restaurant.

That was about all I could do that day.

Capri, Italy

After the 10-day cruise was finished we headed to the Bologna train station from Ravena, Italy.

Once we arrived in Bologna we took the ferry to Capri, Italy where we would spend the next 3 days.

water views of Capri, Italy - trip to Italy and Greece

We stayed at the Hotel Weber where the view was spectacular.

Just down the hill where all the rocks are is a loading area for boat tours. My friends went on a boat to see the sights.

Unfortunately, it was a little too steep for my bad knees so I just enjoyed the pictures they took.

- trip to Italy and Greece

Capri was the most charming and picturesque town and was one of my favorite destinations on our Italy and Greece trip.

sidewalk café in Capri, Italy

I loved the quaint sidewalk cafes.

Gelateria in Carpi, Italy
sidewalk café in Capri, Italy - trip to Italy and Greece

My husband and I had a romantic dinner here. The food and ambiance were amazing!

Get ready for a Capri, Italy blog post with more beautiful pictures, info on shopping, the chairlift we took to the top of the mountain, and so many more scenic spots!

view of Naples, Italy from the balcony of the Grand Parker Hotel - trip to Italy and Greece

After spending a few days in Capri we took the ferry over to Naples where we stayed for two nights.

This was a great location to be close to the airport for travel and the tour Positano and Amalfi Coast tour we took the next day.

view from a balcony of the Grand Parker Hotel in Naples, Italy

This is the view from the Grand Parker Hotel where my friends stayed.

And where we should have stayed.

an alleyway in Naples, Italy

This is the view from our room.

Yes, you could say that we did not plan this one correctly.

an alleyway in Naples, Italy

But we did find a wonderful restaurant in one of the alleyways.

a restaurant located in an alleyway in Naples, Italy

We loved this restaurant, Bencott, so much that we decided to come here twice. It was the best food we had during the entire trip to Italy and Greece.

Sometimes when you venture from the beaten path, you find the best surprises.

linguini and clams in a restaurant in Naples, Italy - trip to Italy and Greece

Doesn’t this seafood pasta look amazing?

an alleyway in Naples, Italy

There is a lot of graffiti in Italy and Greece. It took me by surprise. Venice and Capri seemed to be the only places I didn’t see it.

building in Naples, Italy - trip to Italy and Greece

Here’s a beautiful building on the way down the hill to the water.

Overall, I would not come to Naples again except for access to the airport. It was my least favorite stop.

views of the buildings along the Amalfi Coast

Our group arranged for a private tour from Naples to Positano and the Amalfi Coast.

Amalfi Coast, Italy

What I loved about this tour was that we were able to see the most gorgeous views from the very top.

posing Amalfi Coast, Italy - trip to Italy and Greece

We got out of the tour van a few times for a photo opportunity.

making fresh mozzarella cheese in Italy

We even got to see mozzarella cheese being made.

tasting fresh mozzarella cheese that was just made in Italy - trip to Italy and Greece

This was the most delicious mozzarella cheese I have EVER tasted.

farm to table meal in Positano, Italy - trip to Italy and Greece

We also visited a farm-to-table restaurant complete with outdoor gardens where food was grown for our meals.

gardens in Positano, Italy
views along the Amalfi Coast, Italy - trip to Italy and Greece
  • Carry change at all times in case you have to use the restroom. Most places cost money.
  • Drinking water is not free of charge.
  • If you are staying in a hotel or on a cruise ship, do not expect to have access to an iron.
  • You can stay at the same table in a restaurant for hours and hours if you want. They do not rush you away after you finish a meal.

I hope you enjoyed some of the highlights of our trip to Italy and Greece. We had such a great time!

Stay tuned for more blog posts from our stay in…

  • Venice, Italy
  • Athens, Greece
  • Mykonos, Greece
  • Capri, Italy
  • Amalfi Coast, Italy

Until next time,

Happy Traveling!


If you’ve enjoyed this blog post, please pin and share this on Pinterest.

Let’s Connect on Social Media

Similar Posts


  1. I’m just getting over to see this! I love all of your pictures and taking a virtual trip with you! I hope you share more soon because I am here for it!!

    1. Thank you, Jennifer. You wouldn’t believe all the pics and videos I took but couldn’t share while I was on vacation because of the internet. I’m glad you’re into it because I will be posting for the rest of the year at this rate!

  2. Wow you have sooo many amazing photos! I love seeing you in all the spots. Thanks for taking the time to post these. What a treat for a Sunday.

    1. KIM,

      1. Thank you for reaching out Anita. And thank you for the suggestion about Assisi. I had never heard of this city but just looked to see where it was in the country. The pictures look beautiful.

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *