There really is no time in Italy that isn’t perfect in some way. If you’re visiting Italy in May, get to know what to expect in terms of nice weather, activities, and everything across the country.
May is the beginning of the high season in Italy, where you will start to see warmer temperatures across the major cities.
It’s no wonder it’s a popular destination this time of year, with drop-dead gorgeous sites and warm weather that really brings out the natural beauty of the Italian countryside.
In this guide, we share more information about the average temperatures in May, popular destinations to choose from, and where to head with your bathing suit in hand.
Take a look below to find out more!
Weather in Italy in May
When you visit Italy in May, you will find that the average temperature might vary a little bit depending on the region you are in. Across the board, Italy’s weather brings sunshine and warmth, although it’s not time yet to break out the summer clothing completely. You can wear some shorts and sandals, but there may be cooler times that call for a light jacket too.
The sea temperatures will still be cool, and you might catch some spring rain showers in May that bring cooler weather with them.
The Italy weather forecast will look something like this in different parts of the country.
Northern Italy in May
In North Italy, the ski resorts may still be operating with snow on the ground. While the country is working towards warmer days, there will still be places in the Italian Alps that have snow and cold temperatures both day and night.
The higher the elevation, the colder you will experience until about mid-May, when more of Italy really starts to thaw out. By mid-June, these locations are seeing fewer crowds as the snow melts away.
The Italian lakes, like Lake Garda, are starting to be warm enough to spend the day in, and the sunshine hints at warm days ahead.
It’s time to take a road trip to the warmer areas where nice, pleasant weather awaits!
Central Italy in May
May is a wonderful month to head to Central Italy. You might need a light sweater when the sun starts to go down, but it’s shoulder season, and the mild temperatures will have everyone smiling. Whether you’re taking a day trip, enjoying the local food stalls, or heading to theater performances, you will love the sunshine.
From about mid-April to the middle of June, Central areas of Italy experience lovely temperatures that hover around 75 degrees Fahrenheit. Flowers are in full bloom, sunny weather graces the historic city, and you’re going to have a wonderful time!
Visit Rome or spend your entire trip moving around to stunning locations.
Southern Italy in May
Southern Italy is warming up rapidly. Temperatures bring pleasant experiences, and you’re finally seeing more daylight hours. Late spring is when these areas start to pick up with the coasts getting busy.
Arrive earlier to beaches and hotspots to ensure you get a good spot no matter where you are! Beach time and full-fledged summer are just around the corner, but in early May you will start to see some summer-like days teasing the fun of outdoor activities in this area.
While there is good weather most of May, you may still want to pack a rain jacket for those mild, rainy days that could happen.
Best Places to Visit in Italy in May
May is a great time to soak in the timid spring Italy temps before the summer brings really hot temperatures. You can be a part of the national holiday delights, like International Workers Day, or you can visit something like a famous Unesco world heritage site to enjoy the history and architecture in the major cities.
Visit as many museums as you can squeeze in and head to glorious spots. Take in a cooking class, enjoy the sea views, and take it all in.
These are the best places to visit in Italy during May:
- Amalfi Coast
Tuscany has those stunning hills, and the average temperature in Italy in May makes it a great location to get outdoors and enjoy grapevines, outdoor sites, and even some springtime rain. There is so much nature, and the weather in May in Italy makes Tuscany a great spot to enjoy that nature. Be sure to add San Gimignano to your itinerary.
If you’re traveling to Italy in May, add Florence to your list of stops. In fact, you might want to base your adventure here since there is so much to enjoy on your vacation in Italy in May.
Head on over to the Uffizi Gallery. The lines will already be long, so get there early! Take a stop at Duomo and Piazza san Giovanni to see historic sites and breathe in the fresh, peaceful air.
Visit Venice and the Grand Canal as the perfect destination to enjoy May weather in Italy. It’s the low season here, so it should be a pleasant experience and the perfect time to visit the area to not feel overrun by crowds. May in Italy is perfect here! Add locations like San Marco and Rialto to your list too.
If you want to spend your time around spots like Cinque Terre and many cities along the coast, it’s time to visit the Amalfi Coast. The crowds will be a little lighter still, as summer is really just getting started. In each coastal spot, flowers bring out the colors here.
Since there are still fewer crowds, you can simply enjoy early summer in the area.
Remember to add the island of Capri to your list as well!
Things to Do in Italy in May
The spring months are absolutely stunning no matter where you decide to go. There are several activities you can participate in. Dress comfortably, bring a sweater, and spend some time outside.
Whether you want to enjoy the eternal city, Vatican City, or the Roman Forum, or you want to stick to springtime activities, you will find plenty of options to enjoy.
Check out some of these awesome adventures during May in Italy!
- Mount Etna
- Bike Race
- Festa di Sant’Efisio
May could be a good time to visit the active volcano in Italy. This volcano is located in Sicily so schedule a day trekking along to go see it! Not only is it stunning to behold, there are plenty of places to enjoy along the way.
The Tour de France is heavily involved in Italy, and you will find a similar race, known as Giro d’Italia, that takes place in May. This race happens towards the last half of May, but the dates do change a bit each year. You can check out a small part of the route and plan your day around that location. It’s held annually in Italy.
More info: https://www.giroditalia.it/en/
Festa di Sant’Efisio
Get involved with local festivals through this fantastic option! If you’re interested in visiting Sardinia, you won’t be disappointed. The festival lasts for four days and is one of the largest and most colorful festivals in the world. They do integrate some religious ceremonies and processions as well.
A Taste of Spring for Your Italy Adventure
If you want to visit Italy in May, you will not be disappointed. The timing is perfect with crowds that haven’t quite built up to the full force and temperatures that are still on the mild side. You will have some summer temps and some cooler temps, too – it’s the perfect blend!
You can have a lovely time and enjoy the best of Italy with spring on your side. Where will you go first?
Previous month: Italy in April
Next month: Italy in June
What is the Weather like in Italy in May?
Throughout most of the country, temperatures average from about 15-21 degrees Celcius (60-70 degrees Fahrenheit). In the Northern parts of the country, it’s still a bit colder, but most of the country is warming up to welcome you!
What to Pack for Italy in May?
Pack your summer clothes, but be sure to bring a jacket or sweater and a couple of pairs of pants for those chillier days. Mornings and evenings may be cool, and you could see a little bit of rain too.
Is May a Good Time to Visit Italy?
Yes! This is really the start of Italy’s busy season, and the forecast is starting to look very promising. It’s perfect before it gets really hot later on.
Is Italy Warm in May?
It’s starting to warm up, which means you will see some cooler times but also plenty of warmth and sunshine too. It’s great to be outdoors exploring in the sunshine.
Where Should I Go to Italy in May?
We recommend the Central and Southern parts of Italy this time of year. You really can’t go wrong in any of those regions, so choose what appeals most to you.