Tourists can learn Italian sights briefly from A to Z by visiting architectural monuments, heritage of the Renaissance, nature reserves, wildlife sanctuaries, ponds, volcanoes, and national parks of the country. This is a hospitable, luxurious country with snow-white alpine slopes and golden beaches. Within the walls of museums, galleries, and temples there are historical, cultural, archaeological symbols, and values associated with Italy only.
Italian sights briefly: top 25 most famous sights
In the capital of Italy, there are most of the sights that come to mind whenever Italy is mentioned. Rome, also known as the Eternal City and the capital of the world greets tourists with antique relics, squares, and ancient cathedrals.
Venice is a city built on the water and famous for the Grand Canal, gondola rides, river trams, and the Basilica of St. Mark the Evangelist. Florence is an ancient city with centuries’ history and the famous Uffizi Gallery.
Verona is a place that, thanks to Shakespeare’s play, is associated with the tragedy about the unlucky love of Romeo and Juliet. The symbol of Pisa and Italy is the famous leaning tower. Milan is a city of cathedrals, churches, and basilicas.
So what sights can you choose to start your acquaintance with this country?
Colosseum – an example of ancient Roman culture and the symbol of the country
Many centuries ago, in the walls of this huge theater, spectators watched the competitions of gladiators and Christians thrown to be eaten by lions. Today, the ruins of the Coliseum are daily visited by hundreds of tourists from all over the world. This is the largest circus of the empire that has been preserved to our time.
The ancient amphitheater is located in the historical center of Rome – in the heart of the Eternal City. The Colosseum is the most famous and most visited sight on the entire Apennine Peninsula.
Pantheon – the temple of all gods
This building is a worthy example of medieval architecture where the remains of the first emperors and Raphael Santi are. Therefore, Pantheon deserves to be named one of the main sights of Rome.
Until the 7th century, it was dedicated to seven gods: Mercury, Saturn, Jupiter, Mars, Pluto, Neptune, and Venus. In the 600s, Pantheon was nearly destroyed, but it was saved because it became a Christian temple.
The Leaning Tower of Pisa – the most famous leaning tower in the world
This tower is one of the symbols of the country. It is located in Pisa. Few people have not heard of the leaning old tower, but not everyone knows that this is not an optical illusion. In fact, when creating the building project, the architects made mistakes in the calculations. When the construction of the building reached the third floor, it became obvious that the foundation was sagging and the slope of the tower became even bigger.
Lake Como – a place for a relaxing holiday
This is an immense natural sight located in northern Italy among cozy cities, villages, and mountain ranges. Lake Como occupies 146 square kilometers – this is the third largest water reservoir in Italy and the deepest in Europe.
Everybody who needs to be away from the hustle and bustle of the city chooses holidays in this area. It has clear water, fresh mountain air, and interesting architecture. Celebrities: actors, politicians, media personalities, often rest and purchase real estate on the lake.
People set up tents in wild areas; in cities or villages, you can rent a room or a house and find any kind of entertainment. Cypresses, laurels, pomegranates, oleanders, chestnuts, and olive grow near green shores. Trout and carp live in the water. Water temperature varies between + 5 … + 23 degrees.
Etna – an active volcano and a national reserve
This is the largest active volcano in Europe – its height is 3,295 meters above sea level. Etna is located on the east coast of Sicily near Catania and Messina. This is a stratovolcano, consisting of many layers of hardened lava, dust, and volcanic ash. Around the mountain, there is a national reserve. Since 2013, Etna has been on the UNESCO list.
Around the volcano, there is fertile soil saturated with minerals and microelements. Therefore, despite the danger of eruption, residents grow walnuts, lemons, oranges, and pomegranates. In the lowlands, there are vineyards the famous Sicilian wine is made of.
Vesuvius – an active volcano that destroyed several settlements
Ferocius Vesuvius is 15 km from Naples. This is a peculiar symbol of Italy, which is known because of the destruction of the city of Pompeii.
In 79 there was an eruption, during which several settlements with local residents were destroyed under the ashes and lava flows. Vesuvius is sleeping now, and on the background of the huge mountain you can see the ruins of the city.
Giant Trevi Fountain: Italian sights briefly
In the list of Italian sights, this construction occupies a high position. Its height is 26 meters, and its width is 20 meters – the measurements of a nine-story building with four entrances. Three roads diverge from the Fountain into different directions, hence the name comes from.
This is a key place in Rome. People come here to admire the architecture, toss a coin into the fountain and will definitely return here. The fountain depicts Neptune, which is surrounded by sculptures of calm sea and storm, wealth and health, spring, summer, autumn, and winter. The aqueduct through which water flows was built in 19 BC, and it still works.
The Vatican City – the capital of the Catholic world
This is a separate state, but its architectural monuments are accessed exclusively through Rome. The Vatican is one of the most visited areas of the capital of Italy. There are many sights on the territory of this miniature state. The most famous among them is St. Peter’s Basilica and Square. The residence of the pope is in the Vatican.
St. Peter’s Basilica – Vatican‘s pride
It is the most important Catholic cathedral on the planet, the religious center of Italy and one of the four basilicas of Rome. St. Peter’s Basilica hosts ceremonies of the Roman Catholic Church.
According to legend, at the place where the cathedral was built, the Apostle Peter was executed. Under the altar, there are the remains of St. Peter. This is one of the largest and spacious cathedrals in the world.
St. Peter’s Square: Italian sights briefly
This is the famous square where the Vatican Museum and the Sistine Chapel are located. Newlyweds like to be photographed here – this is a place popular for wedding photos. St. Peter’s Square is the main and the unique square in Vatican.
It is always crowded, but more believers gather here on Wednesdays, Sundays, and religious holidays to receive the blessing of the Pope personally.
Vatican Museums – the famous complex of buildings
These are the famous sanctuaries of Italy and the whole world. The Vatican Museums hold collections created by the popes as well as the works of classical masters and creators of the Renaissance. Museums were founded by Pope Julius II in the 16th century. The complex includes the Sistine Chapel and 53 other galleries.
The Sistine Chapel – residence of the pope
This is the Vatican’s most famous chapel, located in the Apostolic Palace. It became world-famous due to its resemblance to the Temple of Solomon. The walls, the dome and other interior items of the chapel were decorated with works of Renaissance masters.
Tourists visit this place to admire the frescoes of Michelangelo – “The Creation of Adam”, “The Last Judgment” and the ceiling painted by the great master. Today the Sistine Chapel is a monument. Only conclaves are held here to elect a new pope.
Uffizi Galleries in Florence: Italian sights briefly
This is one of the main sights of the famous city, created during the reign of the Medici dynasty. Uffizi is a gallery, a museum of fine art, and a popular destination among travelers.
The institution houses the works of the legendary Leonardo da Vinci, Michelangelo, Raphael, Caravaggio, Durer, Giotto, Correggio, Rubens, Mantegnier, Botticelli, and Titian.
Gothic Milan Cathedral (Duomo di Milano)
This is a functioning church of the Nativity of the Most Holy Mother of God and the main landmark of the city. The cathedral is located in the center of Milan. Its construction began in the Middle Ages and lasted 600 years until 1965.
Outside, the building is bright, faced with white Candolian marble, inside there is semi-darkness. The windows let in little light, Gothic arches soar upward, and wide columns create the illusion of a corridor with mosaic fragments of stained-glass windows.
An underground church is hidden under an unusual altar, next to it there is a big organ with a malachite pattern and carvings. On the spire, there is a figure of the patroness of the city – Madonna. Divine services are held in the cathedral for the congregation of the Russian Orthodox Church and for Catholics.
St. Mark’s Basilica – Italian sights briefly
The list of Italian sights briefly goes on with the burial place of St. Mark the Evangelist in Venice. The majestic basilica preserves the history of the country; it is the most important symbol of the ancient city on the water. Nearby are St. Mark’s Square and the Grand Canal.
St. Mark’s Cathedral is an example of outstanding Byzantine architecture in the Old World. This building is so unique that its own architectural style has gone beyond just one design.
Since 1987, the Basilica has been part of UNESCO as a protected object and a landmark of Venice.
The Grand Canal – the famous “street” of Venice
This is a local sight and an important transport hub of the ancient city on the water. Famous gondolas and river trams sail there. The street starts from the station, passes through the whole city and ends at the customs building. Basically, this is a duct located between the islands of the Venetian lagoon, on which the city was built.
Church of Santa Maria delle Grazie – a symbol of the Renaissance
This is a functioning cathedral of the Dominican monastery, located in the center of Milan. Santa Maria delle Grazie is an outstanding architectural monument created in the 15th century. All construction work ended in 1490. The church is famous for the legendary fresco of Leonardo da Vinci “The Last Supper” – the saddest work of art in the world.
Even though the fresco has a lot of reproductions, its energy still causes a lot of emotions. In 1980, the church was declared the first UNESCO monument in Italy.
The church is made of red brick, and the facade is decorated with light marble. Inside there are high ceilings, a large dome, and square chapels on the sides. On the walls, there are many frescoes created by famous masters.
Pompeii – a buried and isolated city
This is a famous ancient city, which was destroyed by the eruption of Vesuvius in 79. The thriving Roman city was under lava flows and clouds of ash. Today it is a famous site of the Pompeii Archaeological Park in Naples, Campania region.
Pompeii is a unique open-air museum with the well-preserved infrastructure of the ancient city. Life in it ceased in a matter of hours – residential houses uncovered during excavations testify to this.
Since 1997, Pompeii has been on the UNESCO list as a World Heritage Site. In the city, tourists can see the following:
- bakeries and laundries;
- houses of citizens and nobles;
- villas, catering facilities;
- barracks of gladiators; and
- city gates, walls, necropolises and many other things.
The death of Pompeii is one of the largest disasters in the history of mankind. As a result of this disaster, many settlements were buried alive, including Herculanus.
According to studies, the temperature of lava flows reached 700 degrees Celsius. People died from sulfur fumes and boiling blood.
Roman Forum – the heart of the political life of the empire
The ruins of the Forum are between the Palatine and the Capitoline Hills. This is the center of the ancient city, one of the most significant excavations in the world. Centuries ago, there was the heart of the political and social life of Rome.
Villa Borghese is a favorite place for taking a walk
The sight is in the center of the Eternal City. This is a huge green park, located on the site of the old villa Borghese, which was here many centuries ago. To get around the whole territory one day will be not enough. The Borghese collection also deserves attention. Both locals and tourists like to walk here.
The Capitol – the cradle of the capital
This is one of the seven famous hills on which Ancient Rome arose. The capitoline geese who saved the Eternal City lived in the temple of Juno. Money was coined here and the altar of the Lord’s firstborn son was built here. The Capitoline Temple where public meetings and senate meetings were held was built here.
The Palatine – the most significant hill
The most important and significant hill on which Rome was built is the Palatine. According to legend, it was here that the she-wolf found the brothers Rem and Romulus and nourished them. And in the same place Romulus laid Rome.
In the Roman Empire, only aristocrats and nobles lived on the hill. Since the time of Octavian Augustus, the Palatine acquired the status of the residence of ancient Roman rulers. Subsequent emperors built magnificent palaces here, which were superior in their magnificence to their predecessors.
National Museum of Science and Technology Leonardo da Vinci
This is one of the largest Italian museums in Europe, located in Milan. Within its walls are drawings and drafts of a universal person – Leonardo da Vinci. He was a sculptor, an artist, a brilliant inventor, and a natural scientist. The walls of the museum contain the originals of his drawings and crafts.
You can see the models that were created according to the sketches of the creator and his technical inventions. The museum complex displays modern achievements: airplanes, submarines, trains, fragments of the transatlantic liner, and much more.
The museum is located on an area of 50,000 square meters. The library stores 45 thousand volumes, 16.7 thousand exhibits, 50 thousand photos, and audio materials.
Houses, tombs of Romeo and Juliet
In the north-east of Italy is the beautiful city of Verona, which has become world-famous thanks to the famous play. The most famous and tragic love story of young Romeo and Juliet unfolded here.
Young lovers could not be together because of the blood feud of their clans – Montecchi and Capulet. Once, they did not survive separation and drank poison. In Verona, there are houses of the main characters of the Shakespeare’s tragedy. They are popular with tourists from all over the world.
Travelers come to Juliet’s balcony and inspect Romeo’s house from the outside – this is not a museum, but private property.
Capuchin Catacombs – creepy funeral catacombs in Palermo
The remains of people are stored in the open here. In total, there are more than 8 thousand mummies of representatives of the local elite, clergy, aristocracy, and other complicated citizens.
The embalmed, mummified and secreted bodies of the dead are in different positions – they lie, stand, hang, and form various compositions. This is one of the most famous mummy exhibitions.
The most visited destinations are briefly listed in the top 25 Italian sights briefly. These are popular natural and architectural cultural monuments with a centuries-long history.
To get acquainted with the mentality and appreciate the spirit of Italy, you must visit this country. The majestic sights are worth seeing. Centuries-old constructions, lakes, volcanoes have seen ancient rulers, survived hundreds of battles and military operations.
The old art galleries, famous museums, cathedrals, churches, and the ruins of entire cities are amazing. Florence, Venice, Rome, and Milan are cities with ancient buildings which store priceless works of art.