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Essential Italian Experiences in May
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May 1, 2023

Haute Retreats guide will help you discover the most beautiful destinations to visit in Italy during the month of May. Don’t miss out on the stunning sights that Italy has to offer during this time!

The month of May is an ideal time to experience the beauty of Italy. With warm weather and longer days, you’ll have plenty of time to explore all that this stunning country has to offer. The rolling hills are bathed in sunshine and the flowers are in full bloom, creating a picturesque landscape that is sure to take your breath away. Whether you prefer the vibrant energy of the cities or the peaceful charm of the villages, Italy has something for everyone. This luxury holiday destination is the perfect place to unwind and immerse yourself in the stunning scenery as the landscapes come alive in anticipation of summer.


In May, the weather is divine and the cobbled streets are not yet crowded with summer tourists. It’s the perfect time to explore Italy, with endless opportunities to discover new places and experiences as the country transitions from low to high season. Whether you’re planning a romantic escape or a family adventure, a luxury holiday in Italy during May is the perfect choice for you!


If you’re visiting Italy in May, here are some must-see destinations:

  • Sicily
  • Umbria
  • Lucca
  • Lake Como



In Sicily, don’t miss the Infiorata di Noto festival in the city of Noto. This annual event features elaborate displays of flower petals that decorate the city’s streets. The festival is a centuries-old tradition and a significant part of Sicilian culture, offering visitors a glimpse into local life and a chance to celebrate the region’s religious and cultural heritage. It’s also considered to be one of the most beautiful festivals in the world, making it a must-see if you’re in Sicily during May

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If you’re in Italy in May, don’t miss the Festa dei Ceri in the charming village of Gubbio, Umbria. This ancient festival dates back to the Middle Ages and is renowned for its magnificent display of three enormous wax candles, or “ceraioi,” carried by the patron saints of the village: Sant’Ubaldo, Sant’Antonio Abate, and Sant’Georgio. The procession begins with the saints carried on beautifully decorated wooden platforms and paraded through the streets, accompanied by a lively crowd of locals and visitors alike. It’s a unique opportunity to experience the rich history and culture of Umbria!

Festa dei Ceri in the charming village of Gubbio

The festivity involves participants called “ceraioli” who dress up in traditional costumes and are supported by a team of “sostieri.” The ceraioli compete to determine who can carry their saint’s statue the farthest and fastest, making the race an examination of strength and endurance. The team that wins receives a prize! After the race, the ceri are brought to Gubbio’s Cathedral and blessed by the bishop. The event concludes with a conventional Italian lunch consisting of roasted meats, potatoes, and other delectable specialties. The festival ends on a high note with a grand fireworks display, making it the perfect finale to the evening. The Festa dei Ceri is a rare and popular celebration that draws visitors from all over Italy and beyond. If you are in Umbria in May, don’t miss out on this unique experience!

Festa dei Ceri in the charming village of Gubbio


If you’re seeking a magical experience in Lucca, head to Pinocchio’s Park in Collodi for a delightful family outing! This enchanting park is dedicated to the iconic wooden boy from Carlo Collodi’s novel, and boasts various attractions inspired by the story. Children can enjoy exploring the park and interacting with the various characters from the book. Geppetto’s workshop, the Talking Cricket, the Fox and the Cat, and Pinocchio himself are all featured at the park, and visitors can even go for a donkey ride!

Pinocchio’s Park in Collodi is an attraction not to be missed, especially if you’re visiting Lucca with your family. The park is dedicated to the famous wooden boy from Carlo Collodi’s novel and features a variety of fun activities based on the story. On May 25th, the park comes alive to celebrate Pinocchio’s birthday with special events and entertainment for all ages. Take a ride on the wooden train, watch a puppet show, or enjoy the carousel with your little ones. Pinocchio’s Park is also a beautiful place to relax and enjoy the Tuscan scenery, with landscaped gardens, trees, and a pond where you can feed the ducks. Contact one of our Haute Retreats travel tailors to plan your luxury holiday in Italy and explore our selection of luxury villa rentals to find your dream stay.


Concorso d’Eleganza Villa d’Este

The Concorso d’Eleganza Villa d’Este, a classic automobile and motorcycle show is usually held the last weekend in May. The first two days, Friday and Saturday, the event is by invitation only for participants and guests, whereas Sunday the cars transfer to Villa Erba where they are on display for the public. To get a glimpse of the cars, find a place on Via per Cernobbio or Via Regina where they will be driving up to reach the destination on the first day and then again to transfer to Villa Erba for the public exhibition.​


Contact one of our Haute Retreats travel tailors to plan your luxury holiday in Italy and explore our selection of luxury villa rentals to find your dream stay.

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