Best cities to live in Italy


It's not always easy to decide in which area to settle in when moving to Italy. According to you, what are the best cites to live in?

Which regions offer most of the job opportunities, a good quality of life, an affordable cost of living?

Share with us the cities you would recommend to expats and soon-to-be expats in Italy.

Thank you in advance,


I recommend Lucca, Tuscany. Definitely for quality of life.
Beautiful city and only a few minutes from stunning countryside.
Less than 40 mins from the coast or to drive into high mountains for trekking.
Pisa airport is 40 mins away and Florence just over an hour.
Not sure about job opportunities but a perfect location.
I have been here ( just outside Lucca) for two years and love everything about the City and surroundings.
Cheers Jane

DEFINITELY NOT TARANTO! I am sure that almost anywhere is better than here...this is light years away from ' la dolce vita'.
Dirty, has very little going for it...if it was not for my work then I would not be here and I am working hard on a move as soon as possible...we have tried but 4 1/2 years is enough....

i was going to recommend Lucca but Jane beat me to it. Rome is actually another option but miles away in terms of lifestyle when compared to Lucca. The antique centre of Rome is fabulous but that it - outside the centre Rome is mostly just the opposite a concrete mess of bad planning.

Most expatriates have not got the luxury of choice as at least on spouse will be there to work. However, if that is not your situation then check out the costal towns of Liguria and Tuscany such as Porto Venere and lerici, not on the beaten track of mass tourism like cinque Terre but even more attractive.

Best regards

SPELLO! in beautiful Umbria, quiet town with lots of excellent restaurants, wine bars and cordial people.

Well definetly Milan and Rome. Big cities with heaps of going on and more work. Probably Milan is more organise and there is more work opportunities than Rome but it also depends of why are you going to live in Italy.


Aosta, Lecco, Bolzano, Como, Genova,

Sicily is a stunning island but still a mess & people seem to accept that things don't work! If it wasn't for work I'd move straight away! However some of the beaches are beautiful and great for young children.

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Hello all,

I would be very interested to hear anybody's comments on Le Marche please.

What about work. What kind of work can an American have in Italy?


I was surprised that more people hadn't mentioned Le Marche.  To me, this region offers the best of all worlds in Italy:  Access to both lovely beaches and mountains, as well as interesting smaller towns.  The city of Ascoli Piceno is wonderfully walkable, and boasts one of the most beautiful Piazzas in all of Italy (and indeed the world-it has made top 10 lists for piazzas around the world). The people are also quite friendly, and the ex-pat community is growing.

It has the benefit of being affordable, not ovverrun by tourists but with many offerings in terms of activities and festivals, and offers great diversity in terms of cuisine (due to the influence of both nearby mountains ad sea). Being in Central Italy, it is well-connected for travel to other regions and countries. 

Well worth considering!

Thanks so much for the comment on Le Marche. Having researched various areas, Tuscany, Umbria, Liguria, Le Marche came up tops for me.

I am definitely considering Le Marche.  Thewre are some great towns there and the landscsape is not unlike its more expensive cousins Tuscany and Umbria.

What do you know of Fanno?


Hi Arnie:

We have visited Fano in the Northern part of the Marche, but do not know it well enough to comment.  It is more of a resort town, than Ascoli is I believe. We often visit  Conero nearer to Ancona in the summer and we think it is also lovely (and very close to the Ancona airport!)

And I agree, Le Marche is a great (more affordable) alternative to but still not too far from Umbria & Tuscany which are both lovely!

Good luck to you as well!

nice post like it

@Julien Lake Trasimeno is the 4th largest lake in Italy and on the Tuscan/Umbrian border.

there are beautiful towns around its shores. Passignano and Castiglione del Lago for example.

perugia airport is 40 mins away

You need to make a must-have and a would-like-to-have list - if a job as an employer is your #1 priority. most of the best paying jobs are in the Milan / Lombardy area, but as Milan is expensive, you would need to live outside the city. Places like Pescara offer a lower cost of living, but little, if nothing, in terms of career opportunities.

@bibi_turnkeyitalia Spello is beautiful.  We spent a month there.  However, it should be noted that anyone who has breathing problems, problems walking up and down hill, should think twice. 

I coming to Italy I am very very good work experience and general farm workout food packaging general labour

After watching The Godfather my best city in Italy is Palermo. And although you can find many disadvantages of living in Palermo, the advantages speak for themselves.

Have you been to this city to say that? Why don't you like Palermo?