Say a hearty hello to La Bella Italia! Italy is a charm with all the art and culture, history, the most colourful events, spectacular scenic beauty and a whole lot of adventure activities. It is hard not to be intoxicated by the charm and all the sites that it has to offer to its visitors. Not to forget, all the heritage sites that the country of Italy so boldly cherishes.
Italy is the number one country when it comes to housing the best UNESCO World Heritage Sites. Count in Pompeii, the Amalfi Coast, the Dolomites or even the historic centres of Florence, Italy has a whole lot to offer. Italy, according to the UNESCO’s global list, makes up for 5% of the list with over 51 beautiful cultural and natural landmarks. Not just this, Italy still has over 40 spots that are up for consideration and shall be soon included in the list. But for now, here is a quick look at the top UNESCO sites in Italy.
1. Venice and its lagoon landscape
When talking about Italy, it is impossible to get past Venice and not notice the architectural masterpiece that it is. Venice, founded in the 5th century is a spread of over 118 islands with their settlements, towns, and villages. Venice in all its glory is an authentic Italian embodiment.
2. The Historic Centre, Rome
The Historic Centre of Rome dating back to the 17th century includes some of the significant heritage properties such as the Forums, the Mausoleums, the Pantheon, the Column of Marcus Aurelius and the Trajan’s Column.
3. Piazza of Miracles or Squares of Miracles in Pisa
When in Italy, how can one not visit Pisa? The Piazza of Miracles is whiter than white; a masterpiece standing, showcasing medieval art at its best. The well-known Leaning Tower of Pisa overlooks this UNESCO World Heritage Site along with the Camposanto, The Cathedral and the Baptistery, in the vicinity, which are Pisa’s architectural gems stated by the great Italian poet Gabriele D’Annunzio.
When in Milan, Pisa is a great option for a day trip.
4. The Historic Centre of Florence, Florence
The city founded in 59 BC, is the birthplace of most of the renowned artists and figures of literature from the 13th century like Leonardo Da Vinci. The UNESCO World Heritage Site here is the Historic Centre of Florence. The birth of Renaissance art and splendour took place here, which eventually became a notable historic centre in the world that is rich in culture, art and history, namely Florence. Once the capital of Italy, Florence has a museum that showcases both, the European history as well as the Italian culture, still enclosed within the wall built in the medieval times.
5. Cinque Terre
Located on the edge of the Riviera di Levante in the province of La Spezia, the five lands which make up Cinque Terre are Corniglia, Manarola, Monterosso al Mare, Riomaggiore and Vernazza. It was in 1997 that this place became part of UNESCO. The small town, the surrounding landscape, the Ligurian Coast, the slopes drooping into the ocean with green olive trees and vines all come together beautifully.
This is a great day trip from Pisa or Milan.
6. Church and Dominican Convent of Santa Maria delle Grazie, Milan
A business-like city, Milan comes with the attitude of work-hard play hard. Housing Italy’s Stock Exchange and the nucleus of the wealthy, no wonder it’s the financial capital of the country. Just like other cities, Milan was re-built several times because of which there is a lack of medieval charm. But it still has a lot to offer its visitors, especially one of the most famous paintings of the world – ‘The Last Supper’ by Leonardo da Vinci which is held in the Milan in the Convent of Santa Maria delle Grazie.
7. The Historic Centre, Naples
A fascinating city in Italy which is an amalgam of colourful, exciting, vibrant and varied is Naples. It is welcoming and has a curious mix of both ancient and modern. Get a feel of true Naples by strolling by the sea, viewing the various sights, feasting on pasta, pizza and seafood and mingling with the locals. You will definitely begin to love Naples then. Although a tad chaotic, the fine buildings and historic streets have made the Historic Centre of Naples a UNESCO site.
Additionally, the Roman ruins around Naples – Areas of Pompei, Herculaneum and Torre Annunziata are part of the list too. Pompei was an urbanized town with a population of over 25,000 people until it got buried under the Vesuvius volcano that drenched the town while it was still recovering from an earthquake. However, luckily, the remains now house the holiday resort of Herculaneum giving a sharp insight into Italy’s past.
There you have it, some of the most fascinating and alluring sites in Italy.
Our top holidays for Italy include:
Elegant Italy (Rome, Florence & Venice)
Italian Culinary Tour (Rome, Florence & Venice)
Astounding Italy (Milan, Venice, Florence, Cinque Terre, Naples, Sorrento & Rome)
Italian Bonanza (Milan, Venice, Florence, Naples & Rome)
Charming Italy (Venice, Florence, Naples & Rome)