I've been to Italy twice, and I'd love to go back there at least once a year, and I'm sure my dear friend & bestie Náyade would love that! She moved there when we finished college/nursing school in 2002 cause she couldn't find work here, and she's been living there since, in the very gorgeous and amazing city of Firenze!
My visits to Italy have always been to visit my friend and also do a bit of sight seeing. On my first visit we saw Firenze, and did a few quick visits to Pisa, Lucca and Venice. I had a great time, and it was my first trip on my own, Náyade was picking me up on the airport, but I was doing the whole flying and layover in Nice on my own. Traveling on your own makes you realize how important it is to always bring a book with you, some music, and speaking English (and being able to understand & babble some Italian too ("Io capisco ma non parlo" is my fave phrase).
On top of the Duomo's dome, if there's a place with a few hundreds of stairs to claim, I'm all over it!
On my second trip to Italy, I also visited my friend Sally in Milano. I have no pics of that trip on the lappy (either they were film and they're not scanned, or I lost the files on any of the previous deaths of laptops before I had my external HD back ups), but it was a fun trip. I landed at Firenze's airport, got the bus to the city, that stops at the train station (luckily for me) and had to run through it with my suitcase to catch the train to Milano. Shared a cabin with a stereotypical mamma and her sons, experienced the delays of the Italian regular trains, had a brilliant time in Milano, went out clubbing with Sally, had some vodka shots when we returned home, saw some Milano the next day and then went back to Firenze via the EuroStar (amazing fast train experience). Back in Firenze I waited for 3 to 4 bloody hours to see the Uffizi gallery (word of advice, always go with someone to queue for such a long time, it gets too bloody boring on your own!) and also managed to see the real Michelangelo's David.
After all the visits to Italy I always go back home with amazing photographs, some fun stories and a few extra pounds! But the amazing food (I love pasta!) and the even more amazing gelatos (that's ice cream, and the rest... well, can't compare!) are impossible to resist!