Europe is the birthplace of most of the world’s greatest artists, painters, writers, poets and sculptors. Italy became synonymous with art, with some of the most iconic architectural landmarks and art created by great Italian masters. It’s one of the most beautiful countries in Europe as well, and one that you simply must visit.
1. Colosseum, Rome
An ancient amphitheater where people used to go and watch dramas, speeches and fights. It was commissioned by Emperor Vespasian in 72 AD, and completed in 80 AD by the emperor’s son, Titus. It is now part of UNESCO’s list of World Heritage Sites, well worth applying for your Italy visa!
2. Trevi Fountain, Rome
When in Rome, don’t miss out on seeing the Trevi Fountain. It’s a beautiful Baroque-style water fountain, set against the backdrop of the Palazzo Poli. The fountain contains Tritons, horses, and many Roman mythological stories, which tell a story of taming the water. Be sure to throw a coin in for luck.
3. St. Peter’s Basilica, Rome
St. Peter’s Basilica was built over St. Peter’s tomb, and is a spot of pilgrimage for most Catholics. The Basilica is lavished with sculptures and paintings by greats such as Michelangelo and Bernini. Most impressive is the dome which is magnificent, both from within and without.
4. Sistine Chapel, Rome
The Sistine Chapel in the Vatican is the place where popes are elected. Its walls are entirely frescoed with images of saints. What will hold you spellbound is the magnificent ceiling painted by Michelangelo. The entire chapel is full of colorful paintings, sculptures, frescoes and more with plenty of gold gilding.
5. Teatro Antico di Taormina, Sicily
This incredible Greek-Roman amphitheater offers an amazing view of the sea, located as it is on the Ionian coast. Built around 265 B.C. The theatre can accommodate 5,000 spectators, and has is divided into The Orchestra, Cavea, The Access Stairs, The Scene and the The Portici.
6. Mount Etna, Sicily
Still active, this volcano erupts now and then even today. It’s more than 3,000 meters high, and has significant geological features why it is why it is listed as a UNESCO World Heritage Site. You can explore its lava bombs and ice caves, go skiing in winter and explore Alcantara Gorge in the summer.
7. Verona Arena, Verona
This Roman Amphitheatre is more than 2000 years old, and is famous for its history of beast fights, gladiator shows and so on. It’s the second-largest amphitheater in all of Italy, and is still used to host operatic shows. Verona may not be as popular as Rome or Florence, but it’s no less significant when it comes to landmarks.
8. Basilica of Santa Croce, Florence
Florence’s Santa Croce is the final resting place of Michelangelo, Galileo, and Dante. It is the world’s largest Franciscan church, and contains a fabulous museum of incredible artwork as well. Next to Florence’s great Duomo, the Santa Croce Basilica is a not-to-miss landmark.
9. Duomo di Milano, Milan
The fourth largest cathedral in the world, Duomo di Milano is a gothic monument that took six whole centuries to construct. It contains a museum, tombs and many other features. The views from the top of the Duomo are amazing.
10. The Ruins of Pompeii
This over 2000-year-old city was destroyed when Mount Vesuvius erupted. Today, it’s an incredible archaeological site with many artifacts, homes, paintings, Roman baths, the Temple of the Isis and much more to see. This is probably the only archeological excavation of an entire city that you’ll see anywhere in the world.
This is just a sampling of the amazing landmarks of Italy. Be sure to research well before you leave and take in as much of the grand monuments of Italy as possible.