Spend the rest of your vacation in Italy’s cities of art

Do you still have a little vacation left? Then plan a weekend trip to one of Italy’s most beautiful art cities and enjoy art, culture and lots of shopping. For example, you can follow in the footsteps of various high cultures and explore the impressive history of Italy in the numerous museums. Or enjoy first-class concerts and music festivals with a glass of Italian wine. Do you already have your suitcase ready? Then let yourself be inspired what you can experience in Italy’s most beautiful art cities and book your city trip now.

Italy is one of the most popular holiday destinations for a reason. Every year “la Bella Italia” pampers its travelers with beautiful beaches, a variety of natural landscapes and of course first-class cuisine. It is not without reason that it is said: love goes through the stomach. Anyone who has stopped in one of the regional restaurants and tasted typical Italian specialties will never want to eat anything else again. But there is much more that makes Italy so special as a holiday destination. Numerous cities of art invite you to go shopping and sightseeing and fascinate with their historical buildings and special cultural sites.

Reminiscent of ancient Rome: view of the Temple of Saturn.
Reminiscent of ancient Rome: view of the Temple of Saturn. Photo: Simone Antonazzo

Whether as a short trip or as a detour during your summer vacation in Italy, you shouldn’t miss out on a city trip. The country has so many large and small art cities that it is possible to plan sightseeing, cultural enjoyment and a stroll through the city in every region. Find out what makes the Italian cities absolutely worth seeing and let yourself be inspired for your next vacation now. If you want, you can even pack your suitcase and take a spontaneous short trip to one of the most beautiful cities in Europe.

Italy’s cultural heritage fascinates with monuments that are thousands of years old

The Trajan's Markets are considered to be the first covered shopping center in history
The Trajan’s Markets are considered to be the first covered shopping center in historyPhoto: Simone Antonazzo

Various high cultures left their traces in the past: from the Etruscans and Phoenicians to the Romans and Normans, many of the buildings are now part of the world heritage, such as the Arab-Norman Palermo and the cathedrals of Cefalù and Monreale in Sicily. Whether the Colosseum in Rome, the ancient excavations in Pompeii, the Renaissance art in Florence, the palazzi in Venice or the Byzantine mosaics in Ravenna and Monreale, the cultural heritage is impressive.

Hardly any other country has as many cultural treasures as Italy: with 58 UNESCO World Heritage Sites the boot is number 1 on the list. Italy is rich in cultural and artistic sites that are just waiting to be discovered by you!

Impressive museums and sights: immerse yourself in Italy’s culture

Must-see: Admire famous works of art in the Vatican Museums.
Must-see: Admire famous works of art in the Vatican Museums. Photo: unsplash.com

Famous works can not only be found in renowned collections such as the Vatican Museums or the Uffizi Gallery in Florence, numerous churches, palaces and historic villas also preserve first-class works of art and are architectural masterpieces such as the Rolli Palaces in Genoa or the amphitheaters in Verona and Syracuse.

In total, you can discover the cultural diversity of Italy in 4,976 museums and attractions, which includes not only historical but also modern and contemporary works. Every two years, for example, Venice becomes the Mecca of the international art world when the contemporary art biennale takes place. Renowned art halls such as the MART in Rovereto or the MACRO or MAXXI in Rome, which was designed by the well-known architect Zaha Hadid, also show contemporary art.

Further highlights are the archaeological sites and the excavations that testify to the past high cultures. The most famous are Pompeii, where an entire Roman city was excavated, the Colosseum, as well as the Roman Forum in Rome and the Valley of the Temples in Agrigento in Sicily. But also the Etruscan necropolis in Tuscany or the nuraghi in Sardinia are impressive testimonies of sunken cultures that will take your breath away.

Pleasure for the ears: first-class concerts and music festivals

Enjoy the music and the exuberant atmosphere at one of Italy's numerous open-air festivals.
Enjoy the music and the exuberant atmosphere at one of Italy’s numerous open-air festivals. Photo: unsplash.com

Those who prefer music can attend first-class concerts in world-famous opera houses such as the Scala in Milan, the Teatro San Carlo in Naples or in La Fenice in Venice. Are you planning a city break in summer? Then you shouldn’t miss the famous opera festival in Verona or the open air performances in Ravello. An unforgettable experience! If you are looking for even more inspiration, you will here find it.

The Verdi Festival in Parma or the Puccini Festival in Torre del Lago are also among the highlights. There are also numerous music festivals from rock, pop to jazz, which often invite top-class artists to take to the stage and provide entertainment in impressive backdrops such as the Teatro Greco in Taormina or in historic palazzi. Are you interested in other festivals? Then you can here get more information.

Milan, Florence and Co: This is where shopping hearts beat faster

In addition to impressive historical buildings and imposing museums, Italy is also world famous for design and fashion. That Made in Italy stands for quality and craftsmanship combined with creative designs. Names of great designers such as Armani, Prada, Versace, Gucci and Dolce & Gabbana are sure to spring to mind.

While strolling through the exclusive shopping districts of the art cities, you can admire the latest creations of the designers. If you fancy an extensive shopping tour without breaking your holiday budget, you will of course also find many boutiques in Italy’s cities with trendy fashion that is affordable even for the smaller budget.

Do you fancy going on a bargain hunt? In the vicinity of well-known tourist places you will find numerous outlets that offer branded goods at reduced prices. There are also great bargains to be found on the weekly markets. The most famous are the Mercato di San Lorenzo in Florence and the Mercato di Porta Portese in Rome, but Bologna, Naples and Milan are also known for their vintage markets.

Do you need some culinary refreshment during your city trip through Italy? Let yourself be seduced on a pleasure trip to Italy

Insider tip: Shop Italian craftsmanship for your own four walls

Admire the works of local artisans like here at the Sant'Orso Fair.
Admire the works of local artisans like here at the Sant’Orso Fair. Photo: Archivio Regione Autonoma Valle d’Aosta

If you arrive by car and still have enough space in the trunk, you shouldn’t miss the typical Italian craft shops, where you can find wonderful unique items for your own four walls. On the island of Murano near Venice, for example, you can discover the centuries-old craftsmanship of glassblowers, in Florence renowned leather craft and in Umbria and Apulia wonderful ceramic art. A special highlight is the nativity scene in Naples.

Would you like to discover even more craftsmanship? It is best to stroll through the small alleys of the art cities and rummage in small, traditional shops that surprise you with their handicrafts.

The Motor Valley in Emilia-Romagna attracts large and small car fans

Not only a feast for the eyes in the photo: Italian cult objects like the Fiat 500.
Not only a feast for the eyes in the photo: Italian cult objects like the Fiat 500. Photo: unsplash.com

Not only Italian fashion and craftsmanship are world famous. The Italian automobile and motor industry also developed cult objects and status symbols such as Ferrari, Fiat 500 or the Vespa. Anyone who is enthusiastic about high-horsepower design icons should Motorvalley visit in Emilia Romagna: here you can visit the Ferrari, Lamborghini, Pagani and Ducati museums and the Maserati Innovation Lab.

Increases the anticipation of your city trip to Italy: the web radio “Visit Italy”

From the middle of September, the German-language contributions of the first own radio station of the Italian National Tourist Board will run again. The web radio “Visit Italy” inspires with a colorful program of music, podcasts, live reports and much more.

The perfect travel companion for your next dream vacation in Italy: the web radio “Visit Italy”.
The perfect travel companion for your next dream vacation in Italy: the web radio “Visit Italy”.

After the summer break, the German-language articles will run again on Mondays, Tuesdays, Wednesdays, Fridays and Sundays at 9:30 a.m. and Saturdays at 10:30 a.m.

To listen to the web radio, one can use the web player link on the official Italy tourism website www.italia.it, use it on Amazon Alexa and on Google Home or download the app:

Just listen to it: http://bit.ly/Visit_Italy_Web_Radio

Take home a suitcase full of memories

Toast to time together and unforgettable experiences in Italy's most beautiful cities.
Toast to time together and unforgettable experiences in Italy’s most beautiful cities. Photo: unsplash.com

With all the possibilities, a weekend in one of Italy’s many art cities seems almost too short to be able to discover museums, art venues and the like. Italy’s culture is as diverse as the country itself!

If you can, you can take a few more days for the city trip. It is best to think about what you want to visit in advance as well. here you can collect more ideas.

One thing is certain: in Italy’s art cities you can enjoy art, culture and fashion with a typical Italian flair. After your stay, you will surely return home with a suitcase full of memories – and a trunk filled with Italian specialties and fashion treasures.

In addition to the many art cities for shopping, sightseeing and the like, there are many other reasons for your next vacation in Italy: Why you should spend your summer vacation in Italy

Janelle B. Smith

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