Italy – Top 40 Places to See
Italy’s sights – Top 40 Places to See
Rome, pizza, the Venice Canal, the Colosseum and trendy Milan – these are just a few of the words at the mention of which the sights of Italy immediately come to mind. This country for more than a hundred years is famous for its color, unusual atmosphere and a very rich program of excursions. There is something to see even the most spoiled tourist.
Historical sites of Italy
The Pantheon is one of the most important artifacts of Italy. It was built in the 27th century BC by the then ruler Marcus Agrippa. This ancient temple was the embodiment of the greatness of the Roman Empire. The exterior of the building is a large 42-metre high dome with a hole in the center through which a ray of light penetrates. On the inside the temple is decorated with caissons, statues and paintings. Pantheon is included in the top 40 most amazing sights in Rome.
No less significant place, which almost every tourist seeks to visit, is the Roman Colosseum. It can be safely called one of the most grandiose buildings of the entire Roman Empire. It was here for more than 4 centuries, held all the most important celebrations and events. The external appearance of the building is very restrained and simple. This has to do with the fact that Emperor Vespasian, who came to replace the profligate Nero, considered it superfluous to spend money from the treasury on the construction of expensive buildings.
3. Castel del Monte
The sights of Italy are not limited to the monuments of the capital. Castle Castel del Monte, located in southern Italy, near the town of Andria, is also interesting to visit. Built in the mid 13th century by order of Emperor Frederick II. It is a two-storeyed building with an octagonal shape, surrounded by eight towers. Scientists say that this shape of the castle was chosen for a reason, because it exactly resembles the octagonal crown of Frederick II.
4. Tower of Pisa
It is impossible to imagine a trip to Italy without the famous Leaning Tower of Pisa. At first glance it would not seem to be anything special, but for one thing. For more than 800 years this building is slightly inclined to the side and looking at it, it seems that it is about to fall. Initially it was considered that this position of the tower was the author’s idea, but nevertheless scientists agreed that the reason for all this was a banal mistake in the project.
The Tower of Pisa was built in the Romanesque-Pisan style using Carrara marble and stone. The monument consists of 8 floors decorated with figures of mythical creatures, tympanums and capitals.
5. Milan Cathedral
True connoisseurs of architecture will not miss the Duomo Cathedral in Milan. The shrine carries the title of the main symbol of the Catholic faith. The construction of the cathedral fell on the second half of the 14th century. Built in the Flamboyant Gothic style using only white marble. The exterior decoration of the shrine is amazingly pompous. To decorate the facade were used 3400 statues and several thousands of stucco decorations.
The interior of the cathedral is equally beautiful. Colorful stained glass windows, paintings, moldings, majestic columns and marble sculptures are just a small part of what you can see in the Duomo. The highlight of the shrine is the ancient Egyptian baptismal font, dating back to the 4th century.
6. Roman Forum
Another reminder of the former greatness of the Roman Empire is the Roman Forum. It is a whole architectural complex that includes temples, basilicas, arches, and other historical sites. Some of the structures of the forum have not survived to this day, and some have preserved their appearance only in part. The forum itself was originally used as a marketplace where traders from all over the empire came. Later the building were used for political purposes. Today this place is one of the best historical sites in Italy.
The world-famous city of Pompeii left its mark in the history of Italy. It was founded on the site of settlements of the ancient tribe of Oscas. Later the city came into the power of the Romans. The fortunate location of Pompeii (near the river Sarno) gave the inhabitants an opportunity to quickly raise their economic status. For hundreds of years it was a major trading center of the Empire. But the tragedy that happened in 79 AD shattered the idyll of the flourishing city.
Volcano Vesuvius erupted on Pompeii and in a few hours it buried under piles of ashes of the city and its many citizens. The first excavations in the “dead city” began in the 16th century. Since then a lot of artifacts have been found and you can look at them in the Open Air Museum.
8. Valley of the Temples of Sicily
In Agrigento in Sicily the Valley of the Temples offers a mythical atmosphere. Here, from the 5th to the 6th century B.C., several temples were built in honor of the ancient Greek gods. The most magnificent of all was the temple of Zeus, an area of 6500 square kilometers. On its creation day and night worked thousands of slaves from Carthage, most of whom had not lived up to the end of construction.
Until our days from the temple are only ruins and a few 7.5 meter statues of titans serving as pillars. Tour of the valley includes a visit to the temples and the Archaeological Museum of Agrigento.
9. The cave town of Sassi di Matera
The small town of Matera, in eastern Italy, is also interesting in terms of sightseeing. The first settlements were formed here during the Neolithic. This is evidenced by the numerous cave dwellings, as well as palaces and churches carved in the rocks. Especially remarkable is the central district of the city – Sassi. Here tourists have the opportunity not only to see the ancient buildings, walk through underground tunnels and visit museums, but also to sleep in a unique hotel-cave.
10. Santa Maria delle Grazie
It is worth adding the Church of Santa Maria delle Grazie to your list of must-see places in Italy. It is this shrine that contains the famous work of the great Leonardo da Vinci, the fresco “The Last Supper”. However, it will also be interesting to walk around the church itself, which is in the Renaissance style. It is part of a large monastic complex, which, by the way, was the first site in Italy to be listed as a World Heritage Site.
The most interesting and famous places to visit in Italy
Italy can be divided into four regions: northern Italy, central Italy, southern Italy and the islands. North of the country is covered by the majestic Alps, here are the major ski resorts. South of them are popular tourist cities – Turin, Milan, Venice and the local attraction – Lake Como.
The central part of Italy is the Eternal City of Rome with its monumental world heritage. This is the ancient Colosseum, ancient Roman baths, the Pantheon and the Roman Forum. But not only Rome alone is rich in the Central region, here is a popular city of Pisa and inexhaustible source of inspiration – Florence.
Southern Italy is different from the Central and Northern Italy. It even has its own dialect of Italian. In the south of the tourist is waiting impatiently for a bustling Naples and the main gastronomic pleasure – Neapolitan pizza. There is also the formidable Vesuvius and the remains of the city of Pompeii.
Italian islands are the most colorful part of the country. Elba, Sardinia, Sicily, Capri are the best places to see another Italy and fall in love with it.
The best places to visit
The best place to start your journey through Italy is Rome, which was built on seven hills. On the study of its monuments and architectural heritage not enough life, but it is worth trying. In addition to the Eternal City must visit Venice with its many canals. And be sure to taste the Tuscan wines in the main city of the Renaissance – Florence.
The fountain, which has been sung in many movies, including “Roman Holiday” attracts hundreds of tourists a year. To be photographed against the backdrop of the majestic Neptune and his chariot is worth coming early in the morning in Piazza di Trevi. The most important thing is to perform the ritual correctly. To be sure to return to Rome again, you need to throw a coin into the fountain. To meet his love, the visitor will have to part with two coins. Three coins symbolize marriage, four – the acquisition of wealth.
Pantheon is a unique monument of ancient Roman architecture. It is a temple built to glorify the pagan gods with a sacrificial altar. The recommended time to visit is noon. It is at noon when the pillar of light is the brightest. It enters through a circular nine-meter hole in the dome to illuminate the interior of the Pantheon. Here are the remains of great rulers, prominent figures. For example, the Pantheon is the resting place of the famous Italian painter Raphael.
Symbol of Rome and the main attraction of all tourists visiting the Eternal City. A huge amphitheater, built almost two thousand years ago for gladiatorial fights, is still striking today. On this site in addition to gladiatorial fights took place the trampling of wild animals and simulation of sea battles. The Colosseum hosted tens of thousands of spectators and also fascinated the public with its bloody spectacle. The place was stained with the blood and sweat of thousands of people and animals. Today the Colosseum is recognized worldwide as a New Wonder of the World.
A city that is slowly but surely dying. Every year, the waters of the Venice Lagoon mercilessly swallow the city millimeter by millimeter. Very soon there won’t be a trace of it, so millions of tourists try to capture the passing beauty. A must-see is St. Mark’s Square. Here are the main attractions of the city: the elegant and weightless Doge’s Palace, the tall Campanilla, and the Byzantine-style Cathedral of San Marco. And, of course, you must take a gondola ride on the Grand Canal. The cost of the ride starts at 80 euros per boat.
Uffizi Gallery in Florence
It is one of the oldest museums in Europe and probably the oldest in Italy. Anyway, there is no second such museum in the whole world. The building itself is a rich and beautiful architectural monument. Above the palace worked the famous G. Vasari on behalf of the Grand Duke of Tuscany. It’s a place designed to hold and allow you to admire the works of the great masters of the Renaissance. The Uffizi Gallery should only be visited for the works of Titian, the genius of Leonardo da Vinci, and Botticelli. Ticket prices range from 12 to 20 euros.
Santa Maria del Fiore
This is the most famous temple in all of Florence. The cathedral was a milestone in the history of architecture, a kind of transition from the Middle Ages to the Renaissance. Under the dome of Santa Maria del Fiore at the time of construction could accommodate the entire population of the city, and it is about ninety thousand people. Unique bas-reliefs, beautiful frescoes and stained glass, the famous Uccello clock, which since the middle of the fifteenth century still works, sculptures, bronze gates – that’s what makes this place popular among tourists.
Nature of Italy: interesting places for tourists
Tourists strive to sunny Italy all year round, because there is something to see both in winter and summer. The natural beauties of the country rightly occupy a place of honor in the “must-see” list.
The most picturesque vacation awaits on the shores of Lake Como. The deep waters of the lake, surrounded by majestic Alps and green meadows around it attract not only tourists but also celebrities. Many of them buy or build villas here in the Mediterranean style. This raises the cost of land to an all-time high. On the shores of the place are vineyards, pomegranate and olive trees. The romantic atmosphere of the lake has served as the perfect backdrop for many movies.
The volcano Vesuvius
In Italy, Vesuvius is said to be the most dangerous, the most formidable, the most destructive volcano in Europe. Vesuvius is sleeping now, but at any moment it can wake up and destroy the vegetation on its slopes with streams of lava, fill cities with ash and threaten the safety of carefree Naples sprawled at the foot of the giant. The most famous volcanic eruption took place in the year 79 in which Pompeii and the city of Herculaneum were destroyed.
City of Pompeii
This ancient Roman city became a monument to the destructive forces of nature. The eruption of the volcano Vesuvius, and before that an earthquake destroyed the city itself and some of its inhabitants. Excavations have unearthed fragments of streets, houses, and rich villas, but most importantly, human and animal remains have been found. The bodies are perfectly preserved and appear to visitors in the exact poses in which they were caught dead. The many-meter layer of ash has preserved the ancient Roman forum, the town hall, the temples, the market and, of course, the theater.
It is perhaps the most harmonious natural and cultural landscape in the world. Flat green plains, rolling hills, small quiet towns and impregnable castles make up the landscape of Val d’Orcia. But it’s not only the nature that makes this land famous, but also its gastronomic delights. Be sure to try the sheep cheese, olive oil, sausages and the world famous wine Brunello di Montalcino. The price for a bottle of wine starts at 70 euros.
The largest volcano in Italy and Europe is constantly growing. After each eruption its height changes. Etna volcano is located on the coast of Sicily and has several hundreds of side craters one or another of which starts to smoke and release lava. Hiking up the volcano is possible only with an experienced guide. In this place are still active geological processes.
This is a national park that includes five amazing villages nestled on impregnable cliffs. The colorful brightly colored houses attract with their originality and beauty. For the preservation of the unique architecture in this place is forbidden completely or severely restricted vehicular traffic. Rest here is suitable for quiet contemplation, as well as a harmonious pastime.
What to see: the popular places in Italy
Interesting places in Italy are located everywhere. Every region of the country has its unique attractions. To see many of them, you do not need to go to Rome. Milan, Naples, Pisa, Tuscany are ready to offer the traveler their best stories.
Tower of Pisa
The most famous tower of Italy is located in the city of Pisa. Millions of people come from all over the world every year to take a photo in front of the tower. Everyone tries to capture holding it with their hands. A construction flaw that resulted in the dangerous angle of the Leaning Tower of Pisa made it world famous.
In the ranking of the largest churches in the world the Cathedral of Milan ranks fifth. But in terms of beauty it deserves the first place. The majestic and elegant building is dedicated to the Nativity of the Blessed Virgin Mary. The cathedral became a symbol of Milan and its pride. For the construction were used the best materials: white marble, bronze, gold, precious woods. To decorate the cathedral created several thousand statues, stained glass, which date back to the fifteenth century. The central figure in the temple is a golden statue of the Madonna.
Piazza del Campo
This is the most beautiful square in the cozy city of Siena. It is notable for the presence of several unique monuments of architecture. First, there is the Fountain of Joy, which dates back to the fourteenth century. The statues set around the perimeter of the fountain attract visitors from all over the world. The tallest building in Piazza del Campo is the facade of Palazzo Poglico. Today the building houses a museum and town hall. The main attraction in Siena, the horse racing, takes place in the square in front of thousands of spectators who have come from all over the world to see this impressive spectacle.
The Cave City of Matera
The ancient cave city is protected by UNESCO and is also a World Heritage Site. The houses, made of tufa, were inhabited until the beginning of the twentieth century. But due to the lack of sewage and running water, the locals abandoned their homes. The narrow labyrinthine streets and winding staircases give a special flavor to the ancient settlement. The cave dwellings are built on a steep cliff adjacent to the Gravina Canyon. To experience the identity of the city for yourself, visit it in the morning, at dawn.
The center of the entire Catholic world is open to visit only through the gates of Rome. The Vatican is a mini state for its size, but not for its importance. Believers from all over the world want to come here to pray in St. Peter’s Basilica and see the Pope with their own eyes. Such world masters as Raphael, Michelangelo, Bernini worked on the creation of the greatest Christian cathedral.
Verona, along with Paris, is considered a city of love and romance. A halo of love arose over the city thanks to the efforts of William Shakespeare, who wrote his timeless work “Romeo and Juliet”. Thousands of young girls from all over the world dream of stepping onto Juliet’s balcony to hear their declarations of love. Thousands of girls from around the world write letters to Juliet. Thousands of girls from around the world decorate Juliet’s tombstone with flowers. If you’re looking for love, visit Verona and maybe love will find you.