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Discover ancient cities, charming coastal towns and diverse landscapes in this boot-shaped Mediterranean nation, famed for its cultural riches and rustic cuisine.

As the birthplace of pizza, gelato and pasta, Italy is perhaps best known for its mouthwatering food, though it also has much more to experience. Wander through ancient cities filled with historical ruins and relax at glamorous coastal resorts.

Among Italy’s biggest tourist hotspots are Venice, Rome and Florence, each offering iconic sights and world-class museums, from canals to the Colosseum to the Uffizi Gallery. Travelers in search of rugged coastlines and gorgeous beaches head to the islands of Capri or Sardinia, while food-obsessed visitors head to Bologna. For romance and open-air opera, venture to cobbled Verona, the setting for Shakespeare’s timeless love story, Romeo and Juliet.

The Vatican City in Rome is another tourist favorite, with art-loving visitors arriving in droves to marvel at Michelangelo’s famous Sistine Chapel frescoes. If you are planning a visit to this holy enclave, dress modestly and come in the afternoon to avoid the large morning rush.

South of Naples is the scenic Amalfi Coast. Discover colorful mountain towns and picturesque former fishing villages, such as Positano. For a more rugged coastal escape, head north to the UNESCO-listed Cinque Terre, five pastel-painted clifftop villages on the Ligurian coast.

Tuscany in central Italy is another much-loved vacation destination. Stroll around hilltop medieval towns such as the multi-towered San Gimignano and sample some of the region’s famous wines, including Brunello di Montalcino and Chianti Classico. Tuscany is also home to Pisa, famed for its leaning tower.

Italy has an efficient public transportation system. Getting around the country is relatively easy. Ride trains and buses between the larger cities or rent a car to explore more rural areas and remote villages. Ferries run between the ports of the mainland and the small outlying islands. Two major airports serving Italy are Fiumicino Airport in Rome and Milano-Malpensa Airport in Milan.

Uncovering all the charms of the “big boot” of Italy could take years. Pick your favorite spots for your first visit and plan your trip now.

Popular cities in Italy

St. Peter\'s Basilica which includes a church or cathedral, heritage architecture and interior views
Rome
Known for Historical Buildings, Cathedrals and Museums

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Reasons to visit

  • Piazza Navona
    Piazza Navona
  • Pantheon
    Pantheon
  • Colosseum
    Colosseum
Milan which includes street scenes, heritage architecture and a sunset
Milan
Known for Cathedrals, Museums and Culture

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Reasons to visit

  • Galleria Vittorio Emanuele II
    Galleria Vittorio Emanuele II
  • Teatro alla Scala
    Teatro alla Scala
  • Cathedral of Milan
    Cathedral of Milan
Venice featuring boating, night scenes and heritage architecture
Venice
Known for Boating, Cathedrals and Churches

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Reasons to visit

  • St. Mark's Square
    St. Mark's Square
  • Grand Canal
    Grand Canal
  • Rialto Bridge
    Rialto Bridge
Royal Palace which includes heritage architecture as well as a small group of people
Naples
Known for Historical Buildings, Tours and Museums

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Reasons to visit

  • Piazza del Plebiscito
    Piazza del Plebiscito
  • Royal Palace
    Royal Palace
  • Castel dell'Ovo
    Castel dell'Ovo
Ponte Vecchio which includes vehicle touring, street performance and a city
Florence
Known for Historical Buildings, Museums and Culture

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Reasons to visit

  • Uffizi Gallery
    Uffizi Gallery
  • Ponte Vecchio
    Ponte Vecchio
  • Cathedral of Santa Maria del Fiore
    Cathedral of Santa Maria del Fiore
Turin which includes a square or plaza, heritage architecture and a fountain
Turin
Known for Historical Buildings, Museums and Business

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Reasons to visit

  • Egyptian Museum Torino
    Egyptian Museum Torino
  • Valentino Park
    Valentino Park
  • Valentino Castle
    Valentino Castle

Popular places to visit in Italy

Trevi Fountain
Image for Trevi Fountain

Trevi Fountain

Rome is a city abundant in world-class water features, but none more stunning, or more famous, than the Trevi Fountain.

Colosseum
Image for Colosseum

Colosseum

A true architectural heavyweight, the 2,000-year-old Colosseum is often considered one of the seven “modern” wonders of the world.

Pantheon
Image for Pantheon

Pantheon

One of ancient Rome’s greatest achievements combines momentous history and inspired architecture.

Piazza Navona
Image for Piazza Navona

Piazza Navona

The old papal buildings have altered little over the centuries, but still act as an open-air hub for cafés and street entertainers. 

Rialto Bridge
Image for Rialto Bridge

Rialto Bridge

Take a stroll across Venice’s oldest and most iconic bridge for romantic views, souvenir shopping and street entertainment.

Roman Forum
Image for Roman Forum

Roman Forum

Explore one of the most renowned archaeological sites in the world and immerse yourself in the ancient atmosphere where the Roman Empire began.