World travelers who go to Italy will undoubtedly visit famous cities such as Rome, Florence and Venice. They are right, but Italy has much more in store for urban beauty. We list 4 beautiful, somewhat lesser-known Italian cities and give you tips where you can spend the night.
Bergamo at the foot of the Alps
This city in the north of Italy has been chosen as the cultural capital this year. One more reason to visit Bergamo, which is only 40 kilometers east of Milan. Bergamo is divided into a modern lower town and an old, fully walled upper town where it seems that time has stood still. You can take a leisurely stroll through the picturesque streets and enjoy ancient architecture. During your walk up you will automatically reach it Old Town Square, the old square described by the famous architect Le Corbusier as the 'most beautiful square in Europe'. Did it make you hot? Then order a stracciatella ice cream. The creator of this delicacy, Enrico Panattoni, came from here.
Roman history in Brescia
Brescia can also call itself cultural capital 2023. This town is located near Lake Garda, a popular location to spend the night in a van for years our mobile homes in Italy. The art city of the Mille Miglia, as Brescia is known, is home to the largest and best-preserved Roman archaeological complex in northern Italy. Imagine yourself back in Roman times and admire the beautiful columns of the Tempio Capitoline. Near the temple you will also find the remains of it Roman Theatre. The archaeological complex, together with the Monastery of Santa Giulia and the Church of San Salvatore, is included in the UNESCO World Heritage List. The old town with several beautiful buildings dating from the Renaissance is also worth a visit.
There are numerous cultural activities in both Brescia and Bergamo. View the full program at official website of these cultural capitals.
Genoa port city on the Mediterranean Sea
Genoa, probably the birthplace of Columbus, is Italy's largest port city. Especially the old center, which is included in the UNESCO World Heritage List, appeals to the imagination. It is easy to get lost in the labyrinth of narrow streets that crisscross each other. Genoa is also a great starting point to discover the beautiful coast. On the Riviera Levante (where the sun rises) and the Riviera Poniente (where the sun sets) there are many beautiful places that have been a popular holiday destination since the 19th century because of the pleasant climate.
The Cinque Terre are special. These five picturesque villages, built right next to the sea against the rocks, have now become a tourist attraction. You will find them more than an hour south of Genoa on the Riviera Levante. Less touristy, but certainly also very picturesque is the fishing village of Camogli, half an hour from Genoa. Here you can also taste the most delicious Focaccia in Italy.
Perugia, older than Rome
In the green region of Umbria, south of the Tuscany region, lies the beautiful town of Perugia, which dates back to the time of the Etruscans. In the old, high-lying part of the city, everything breathes into the past. From Perugia it is only a short drive to the pilgrimage town of Assisi, birthplace of Saint Francisco. The nearby Lake Trasimeno is also worth a visit. Perugia is about two hours from Rome. So you can spend the night there and make a day trip to Rome from there.