There’s no beating around the bush, there are so many beautiful places in Italy to see. It’s one of my favorite countries to just hop in a car, train, rickshaw and just explore. There’s something I just love about getting to Italy, with a loose plan (and Google Maps) in hand and just exploring some of the places that you might normally miss when visiting.
Here’s a list of top 10 most beautiful places in Italy.
The jagged peaks of the Dolomites span the provinces of Trentino and Alto Adige, jutting into neighboring Veneto. Europeans flock here in winter for highly hospitable resorts, sublime natural settings, and extensive, well-coordinated ski networks.
The Dolomites are often visited as a winter destination, but in the summer, the snow melts to reveal wildflowers and hiking trails, wild protected parks, and glistening lakes.
The Dolomites’ relatively temperate climate and natural beauty make it a tourist destination year-round, so make your Dolomites travel plans based on your own seasonal preferences.
There are many ways to experience the Dolomites. For those that want to experience the culture of the valleys and the towns, we recommend staying in
farm stays. For those seeking a luxurious getaway, look no further than the region’s 5-star spa hotels. And for hikers who want to traverse long distances, we recommend sleeping in
However, one of the most fascinating things about traveling here is discovering the tumultuous history of this region’s to-and-fro between the two countries, particularly post World War One – and how it continues to cause issues on identity and national belonging for those who live in South Tyrol.
Venice is one of the most romanticized destinations in Europe. It’s history, architecture, and unique setting offer a truly one of a kind experience that is not to be missed. However, the city is very expensive, especially on the main island. Overtourism (Pre Coivd-19 days) has become a real problem and no matter what time of the year, you’re going to find tons and tons of crowds. If you come in the summer, it’s unbearable. If you come when a cruise ship is docked, it’s even more unbearable.
If you’re traveling with a group of three or more, your best option may be to stay in an apartment.
Must-see attractions are St. Mark’s Basilica ( Basilica di San Marco), Grand Canal, the Grand Canal is the principal boulevard through the city, connecting Piazza San Marco, Rialto Bridge, and the arrival points of the rail station and bridge from the mainland, Rialto Bridge ( Ponte di Rialto ) free, Teatro La Fenice, Campanile di San Marco, St. Mark’s Square ( Piazza San Marco), Bridge of Sighs. free, and Doge’s Palace ( Palazzo Ducale ).
Along the most beaten paths in Venice, you’ll find a wide variety of restaurants and cafes. These are typically the most overpriced restaurants in the city with the lowest quality food.
Head to a bacari if you want some good, affordable food. These small and simple restaurants are typically hidden off the main drags and serve Cicchetti, which is a small appetizer-sized dish that costs about 3 euros.
Florence, the home of the Renaissance and birthplace of our modern world, has the best Renaissance art in Europe.
Narrow cobblestone streets, intimate cafes, and the rolling hills of the Tuscan countryside lend an air of romance while grand palaces and beautiful churches inspire awe. Galileo, Leonardo da Vinci, and Michelangelo have all called Florence home and these renaissance masters’ cultural legacy can be seen throughout the city.
Florence is 1.5 hours by train from Rome and just over 2 hours from Venice. Some really cool and important sites in Florence include the Cathedral, the Baptistery, the Uffizi, the Bargello, and the Accademia. The churches of Santa Maria Novella and Santa Croce are veritable art galleries, and the library of San Lorenzo is a magnificent exhibition of Michelangelo’s architectural genius.
Sure, Florence is touristy. But where else can you stroll the same pedestrian streets walked by Michelangelo, Leonardo, and Botticelli while savoring the world’s best gelato?
Possibly more than anywhere else in the world, Rome is a true mix of the old and new city. It’s a city that proudly flaunts its ancient history while continuing to develop. It’s a living and breathing city — which means it’s crowded, dirty, noisy, full of scooters, and is a little rough around the edges. It’s also beautiful and its narrow side streets and old-fashioned ruins are certainly romantic and magical — so despite its shortfalls, Rome continues to be many people’s favorite city in the world.
After more than 2,000 years in existence, there are enough things to do, see, and explore to keep you busy for years, with decadent pasta, gelato, espresso, and pizza to indulge in, places to shop for everything from handicrafts to haute couture, archeological sites, Baroque churches, villas-turned– museums, and enough art to overload your senses.
Some fun places to visit in Rome are Visit the Colosseum, Visit Piazza Navona, Wander around Centro Storico, Visit Castel Sant’Angelo, Trevi Fountain . Piazza Navona. St. Peter’s Basilica. Sistine Chapel. Pantheon. Centro Storico & the Spanish Steps. Palatine Hill Borghese Gallery and Gardens.
While Rome’s main tourist attractions don’t exactly cluster, most of the major ones are within a 20- to 30-minute walk of each other, so several areas are convenient for sightseeing.
TUSCANY ( countryside) :
The glorious region of Tuscany is a picture-postcard destination in northwest Italy. Medieval villages cascade down hillsides in colors of warm honey while towering cypress trees stand guard to fields sprinkled with sunflowers. Tuscany was the birthplace of the Renaissance movement and it’s easy to see why great artists and visionaries such as Da Vinci, Michelangelo, and Galileo made it their home.
With its manicured fields, natural farms, cypress-lined driveways, and towns clinging to nearly every hill, Tuscany is our romantic image of village Italy. Venture beyond the fringes of Florence and you’ll find a series of the sun- and wine-soaked villages, each with its own appeal. Stretching from the Umbrian border to the Ligurian Sea, the landscape changes from pastoral (Crete Senesi) to rocky (Chianti) to mountainous (the Montagnola) to flat and brushed with sea breezes (Pisa).
Be prepared for curvy roads and some unexpected twists. From Siena, drive about 18 miles south to Buonconvento, a pristinely preserved medieval village is waiting for you. Just 15 minutes away, in a landscape dominated by grapevines and olive groves, find a Montalcino farmhouse built-in 1840. The rustic spot is Azienda Agricola le Chiuse, a winery, and agriturismo that offers four apartments.
In the Crete Senesi hills, San Giovanni d’Asso has a thing for white truffles. The town’s castle houses the Museo del Tartufo, complete with a giant walk-in replica of a fungus.
In a quiet corner of the Chianti Classico region sits Castello di Ama, which attracts attention for more than just quality reds. For almost 20 years, the winery’s owners have invited artists.
One criticism of some Italian towns is that they’ve been taken over by tourists. But that’s the appeal of Il Borro, a 700-hectare estate owned by the Ferragamo family, which includes a painstakingly restored medieval village.
It’s a once-in-a-lifetime must-see, and you once you’re here, you’ll never want to leave again.
Known as Italy’s cosmopolitan design center not to mention the economic capital of Italy and second only to Rome for its cultural and political life Milan has a lot to offer.
Milan offers all the advantages of a large city, but it is relatively small, thus making it perfect to visit, as tourists can get to most of the city’s attractions and museums on foot.
Must-see attractions in Milan are See Leonardo’s Horse, Roam the flea markets, Visit Pinacoteca di Brera, Visit Idroscalo Park, Walk along with Corso Magenta, Wander the Giardini Della Guastalla.
Milan’s subway system is the fastest and easiest way to get around town. There are four lines, and two of them stop at the Duomo. There are also easy connections to the Milan Central Station and other neighborhoods, like Porta Romana.
The shoulder seasons are the best time to visit Milan, from April to May and then September to October. You will avoid peak tourism season when you come during this time, and the weather will still be warm.
If your biggest draw to Milan is for its shopping and fashion opportunities, Fashion Week takes place twice a year (for autumn/winter and then spring/summer) and is a big deal.
THE ISLAND OF CAPRI:
The island of Capri is famous for a reason. Capri’s beauty has made it a dream destination with jaw-dropping views, amazing cuisine, world-class shopping, and an amazing vibe that you’ll only fell here.
Capri is an island of many contrasts. For hurried daytrippers, it is a crowded labyrinth of expensive boutiques. For celebrities and the ultra-rich, a point of rendezvous. For historians, it is the palace-island of Emperor Tiberius, dotted with neglected Roman remains.
There are two towns on Capri; Capri town itself, which is in the center of the island, and is where most of the hotels are located, and Anacapri. Anacapri is situated on a plateau above Capri and is a more reserved, more ‘normal’ town. Accommodation is generally cheaper, although you’re still not far from the hub of things, and there is a regular bus service. From Anacapri, you can take the chairlift up to the top of Monte Solaro and enjoy the views before the trip back down (on foot if you’re so inclined). Villa San Michele, the home of Swedish doctor and writer Axel Munthe (see book section below) is located in Anacapri and is open to the public.
Visitors should note that Capri is not an ideal beach destination. The island is steep and rocky, with the main settlements high above sea level. There are just a couple of small shingle beaches.
Things to do in Capri Rent a boat, Visit Marina Piccola, Have an Aperol Spritz at the Piazzetta, Take a dip in The Blue Grotto.
The ruined city of Pompeii lies at the foot of Mount Vesuvius, the volcano whose eruption in AD 79 engulfed and subsequently encased the city in six meters of ash and pumice-stone
Forum(The principal square of a Roman town, t), Theaters, Terme Stabiane (Stabian Baths), House of Menander, Nuovi Scavi (New Excavations), House of the Vettii, Street of Tombs.
From Rome, take the train to Naples at the Napoli Centrale Station. The fast train, either Frecciarossa or Italo, takes about an hour and ten minutes each way.
Many of the artifacts from Pompeii are housed in the National Museum of Archaeology since they were directly ordered to Naples in the 1700s by the Neapolitan king. History and archaeology buffs should absolutely visit the museum. It offers the best look into the art of Pompeii that still exists, which ranges from enormous statues and mosaics to intimate objects of everyday life. Pompeii archaeological site has all of the ruins but the Naples Archaeological Museum houses all of the objects found during excavations.
Sicily is a picturesque and serene island, that somehow also seems to be full of drama. Choose your own adventure from your luxury villa in Sicily; whether you’re all about exploring history, food, and drink or want to spend your time soaking up the sun. Mount Etna dominates the landscape, its active presence providing forests, mountainsides, and cold lava streams to explore. The cities are bustling with activity in the form of markets, theatres, and great shopping – all in the shelter of beautiful ancient streets.
Sicily is one of Europe’s most southerly destinations – parts of it are even on the same latitude as North Africa. This means that the island enjoys a long, warm season and can be visited year-round . You could be swimming in the bath-warm waters right into November if you’re lucky. Yet, the gentle coastal breezes mean that even in the height of summer ( July and August ) when the temperatures do rocket, it isn’t too stifling.
Hiring is a car is the best way to get better familiarized with Sicily and hunt out those hidden spots. It is also a good option for the time-tight traveler as public transport timetables can be limiting.
Some hidden gems in sicili are Cavagrande del Cassibile Nature Reserve ,The entire town of Caltagirone, Capuchin Catacombs of Palermo ,Lo Stagnone lagoon.
Cinque Terre is the star of the Italian Riviera. The five fishing villages are a UNESCO World Heritage Site.
The area is known for its preserved architecture, coastal hiking trails, and sea views. It’s on many traveler’s bucket lists and for a good reason.
Cinque Terre traditionally consists of five, UNESCO protected villages: Monterosso, Vernazza, Corniglia, Manarola, and Riomaggiore which are all snuggled within the Cinque Terre National Park and protected by the pristine Mediterranean Sea to the west.
There are three ways to see Cinque Terre: by boat, by train, or a combination of boat and/or train and hiking. The train is the fastest way to get around with lots of trains connecting the five villages at regular intervals throughout the day. The boat takes much longer but gives you a different perspective. However, some of the best views of Cinque Terre are found on land and not from the water.
Must see attractions are Walking the Cinque Terre, Monterosso al Mare, Vernazza, Corniglia, Manarola, and Riomaggiore.
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