Italy is one of the top tourist destinations for not one, but many reasons. Here are the top reasons to travel to Italy at least once in your lifetime.
Honestly? I think there are a lot more than just eight reasons to travel to Italy. Its culture is so rich, with extravagant food and ancient historical sites that are beautifully preserved.
It’s a country where nature, art, history, and religion combine to form a cultural superpower, unlike any other. But alas, there can only be so much one can say about Italy. The truth is, you can only feel the essence of Italy’s art, history, and culture once you arrive there.
So in this post, I’ve resorted to summarizing the top eight alluring things about Italy. In case you’re skeptical and don’t get what’s all the hype about, these attractions will convince you in a jiffy. Read on!
Our Favorite Reasons Why You Need to Visit Italy
Below, I’ll discuss a few reasons why you should visit Italy. Once you decide to go there and start witnessing the stunning sights, believe us, you’ll be oohing and aahing around every corner!
A Hub of Historical Buildings
If you’re a history fanatic arriving in Italy will be like opening the door to the past given its huge historical heritage. With the Roman and Byzantine empires ruling the place all those centuries back, they’ve left behind some undeniable monuments.
Even if you don’t plan a historic excursion here, some locations are hard to resist visiting. This, of course, includes the Colosseum, a four-story tall circular amphitheater. The sheer size and build of the colossal structure radiate the Roman empire’s power and engineering prowess.
Plus, you can’t skip visiting the leaning tower of Pisa – the miraculous building that somehow survived without tipping over all these decades.
Other than that, you can go to the eerie city of Pompeii, near Naples, which was buried under a sudden lava eruption. An entire Roman city, preserved as entirely solid and intact, can be viewed and examined by tourists.
And guess what? Venice isn’t just about romantic boat rides – the magnificent Palazzo Ducale is also one of the reasons to travel to northern Italy.
It used to be the Doge’s Palace and public offices and also houses ghostly dungeons for prisoners. You can observe a combination of architectural styles of the Byzantine, Gothic, and Renaissance periods here.
The wealth of history in Italy is so much that it ranks number one on the list of most UNESCO World Heritage sites. For many people, this fact alone becomes one of the reasons to travel to Italy.
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Art and Architecture
Italy is arguably the best place in the world for artists and architects to observe some awe-inspiring sights. Buildings that developed through different ruling dynasties stand as proof of those era’s talented architects and artists. The number of Italian landmarks is just dizzying. Every way you look is a historic site, building, or monument.
For example, it’s home to the largest and perhaps the most beautiful church in the world – St Peter’s Basilica in Vatican City. Its intricately carved walls have several popes buried within them and also have the invaluable Pieta – a Renaissance sculpture by Michelangelo.
Nothing describes this place better than Dan Brown’s bestselling novel, Angels and Demons, which revolves around its artworks and their historical significance. More of Michelangelo’s unmatched art is in the ceiling of the Sistine Chapel. This dizzying yet gorgeous ceiling is covered in paintings by the famous artist, Michelangelo – a sight you don’t want to miss.
Yet another architectural wonder is the Duomo Siena. Once you’ve recovered from staring at its beautiful outer walls, you’ll notice that this Roman-Goth Church has the most stunning mosaicked pavement. It also holds some treasured sculptures by Donatello and Michaelangelo.
And if you haven’t had enough of it, visit the Uffizi Gallery in Florence to view more prized artworks dating centuries back.
Do you see? Italy is so rich in art and architecture that you’ll satisfy your lust for Italian art for years to come. People know it too, which is why museums are generally booked far in advance, so get your tickets to skip the long lines as that’s one of the most important things to do before traveling to Italy.
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The country isn’t all about buildings and monuments, though. In fact, its natural beauty is one of the major reasons why Italy is great to visit.
For instance, consider the Dolomites in Northern Italy, yet another UNESCO World Heritage Site. These majestic mountains with eighteen glorious peaks provide countless hiking, biking, and skiing opportunities, unlike any other.
There are an insane amount of top hikes in the Dolomites that you need to try if you’re an avid hiker.
Plus, the luxurious world-class resorts around these towering peaks are the cherry on top. But if you’re not much of a mountaineer, the lush and colorful Umbra forest in Gargano will do you good. In autumn, the foliage here turns bright orange, and the hundred-year-old oak trees are sought-after by tourists.
Another stunner is the Cansiglio Forest in north Italy, where beech trees and the native flora and fauna leave people fascinated. The nature trip doesn’t end here, though. You’ll want to visit the breathtaking sunflower fields in the regions around Tuscany between June to July.
And for some very Instagramable photos, there’s a small village near Umbria called Castellucio, where blood-red poppies flourish in summer.
I could go on and on about the rolling hills and mountains in this country – the list of touring spots is endless. But for a soulful trip, staying in a farmhouse near the Tuscan villages and witnessing beautiful sunsets and sunrises is a good starting point.
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Beautiful Beaches and Lakes
If you think that Italy doesn’t offer exotic beaches, you probably haven’t visited the island of Sardinia yet. The beaches here are nothing short of spectacular, for instance, the Spiaggia Della Pelosa, where the sand is pure white and the water, a glimmering turquoise.
But if you’re looking for something more quiet and peaceful, head over to the island of Capri. Several beaches here have secluded sea caves with brilliant blue water – perfect places to have a romantic swim with your partner.
You may even come across a celebrity or two on Capri beaches with more exotic resorts. And oh, the lakes are another reason why you should travel to Italy. You will love the calm, crystal-clear waters surrounded by colorful harbors and lush hills.
Garda of Northern Italy, in particular, is a famous tourist attraction, being Italy’s largest lake (370 square kilometers!). Surrounded by the Dolomites and quaint, charming towns, you’ll be hard-pressed to find a bad angle here.
But the best and truly Bellissimo lake is Lake Como, near Lombardy, as the surrounding hills, mountains, and colorful villages offer some great views.
I suggest having lunch at the hilltop restaurants that overlook the lake – it’ll be a meal you’ll never forget.
Our point is that it’s a misconception that Italy lacks seaside extravagances. Believe us; you’ll be returning home beautifully tanned and satisfied!
Food to Die For
All that roaming and trekking calls for some delicious meals, and what’s a better place than Italy for that?
A country so rich in culture and history is bound to have some exceptional food. Hence, mouth-watering dishes are another one of the reasons to travel to Italy.
Forget deciding between Chicago or New York pizza – the real stuff is right here in Italy. Being the mother of all pizzas, the Margherita from Naples is the best you’ll ever have.
As for pasta, the Carbonara and Lasagne that you’ll have in Italy are impossible to find anywhere else in the world – it’s that good.
And I am not kidding when I say that. The American and other versions of these dishes are great, but Italy’s authentic flavors are simply unbeatable. It’s no wonder why Italians get annoyed when they see the rest of the world butchering their recipes!
But Italian cuisine is not all cheese and chunks. You can enjoy a hearty soup called Ribollita, or some healthy, Neapolitan-style mussels by the seaside. Fried calamari on Italian beaches, though, is something you should definitely try on your cheat-day.
For dessert, don’t forget to indulge in Italian delicacies like Tiramisu or Panne Cotto. Indeed, a meal like this on a quiet outdoor table with a magnificent view is the Italian dream.
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Ah, wine. Why wouldn’t a country with such romantic landscapes have great wine?
Yet another one of the countless reasons to travel to Italy is its fantastic wine-tasting tours.
The country is well-known for Chianti, a red blend of 80% Sangiovese grapes, made in Tuscany in Central Italy.
So whenever you’re touring the region’s hilltops and medieval churches, don’t forget to drop by a winery to taste it.
I suggest Rocca Delle Macie for an exquisite Chianti tasting experience.
Another DOCG-labeled and much celebrated red wine, Sagrantino di Montefalco, can be tasted in Bevagna and Montefalco’s wineries. The luxurious earthy and tannic flavor of this wine is one of its kind and is a must-try on a wine-tasting excursion.
Italian wine is so special and so amazing while you are there. Even a good house wine is better than what you can get at home and it’s cheaper than water! This alone is one of my favorite reasons to visit Italy.
I end up saving a ton of money from the Italian wines.
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Rome, Florence, Venice – nothing compares to the exquisite beauty and flair of these cities. These cities alone are a reason to visit Italy.
But Italy’s charming little towns and villages, often clinging to steep terraces overlooking the waters, have an allure of their own.
A great example of this is the Cinque Terre in Liguria. These are five tiny villages on the Italian Riviera coastline, with bright-colored houses and buildings overlooking the sea.
Since these villages sprawl down the hills, there are many hiking trails here, and the reward of reaching the top is a splendid view of the buildings and sea below.
On the other hand, the towns on the cliffs of the Amalfi Coast are one of the reasons to travel to southern Italy. The thrilling ride through this route will give you a sweeping view of the pastel-colored houses and beaches below.
And as if this wasn’t enough, Italy has an abundance of lakeside villages that are equally picturesque and charming. Lake Como, Sirmione, Varenna, and Bellagio are to name a few out of hundreds.
Choosing to stay in any of these beautiful towns will serve as a romantic getaway, unlike any other – no wonder Italy is bustling with tourists on Valentine’s day.
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If you’re making a list of ‘reasons I should travel to Italy’, don’t forget to add opera there. I suggest dipping your toes in the world of opera by visiting this art’s birth country.
The experience is exciting on its own, but watching the performance in one of Italy’s majestic opera houses, becomes surreal.
This country was home to the very founders of opera – Verdi and Peri are some of the many prominent names. Hence, there are some spectacular venues here, such as the Teatro di San Carlo in Naples, the oldest opera house in Europe.
Also, Teatro Alla Scala in Milan is arguably the most famous opera house in Italy, with a lavish interior and a museum that is worth exploring. I bet you’re going to fall in love with this art as you witness the wonderful music and vocal artistry at these venues
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Best Time to Visit Italy
Summer has long been the most popular holiday destination in Italy, but it’s been hectic and sometimes sizzling. Autumn is a great time to visit because there are fewer people and no competition for airfare and hotels (generally speaking).
It’s a beautiful land that is a beautiful place during autumn, spring, and winter that has everything for everyone.
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Final Thoughts: Go Visit Italy!
Without a doubt, Italy ticks all the boxes if what you need is a soul-fulfilling trip. Italian culture is truly amazing and has something for everyone from the beautiful natural scenery to the incredible pieces made for art lovers to the variety of Italian islands, there’s a reason why Italy is one of the most visited countries in the world.
It’s a plethora of scenic sights as well as man-made wonders, and the sheer beauty of it all is going to leave you awestruck. Venice, Rome, Milan, and Florence are definitely some places you should make a beeline for but don’t forget the offbeat destinations.
These tiny little towns, tucked into cliffs and lakesides, are some great places to see in Italy and worth every penny and second.
So, are you still skeptical about why Italy is a great place to visit? If not, go ahead and start booking!