Where everyone wants to go! - The 10 most popular cities in Italy

The 10 most popular cities and places in Italy: This is where many people want to go (at least) once in their lives. Be warned: it might get a bit crowded, especially in summer...

10 Verona in Veneto: time for big feelings

In Verona there is a full load of Emozioni Grandi and drama. On the one hand, the city in the Veneto region is the setting for the most famous love tragedy in the world (Shakespeare makes Romeo and Juliet love, suffer and die in Verona). On the other hand, the world-famous opera festival takes place every summer in the more than 2000-year-old arena. In 2023, by the way, the festival celebrates its 100th anniversary with a new production of "Aida".

Even though Romeo and Juliet are actually an invention, there is a "Casa di Giulietta" with a balcony that you can visit. At the latest when you stand on the balcony and look down into the wildly romantic courtyard, you are waiting for a Romeo. Every year, about 1.8 million visitors come to Verona.

>>> Our tips on how to experience Italy authentically.

9 Capri, the blue pearl off Naples

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The place of longing in the blue sea. No island is sung about abroad as much as Capri, the 10-square-metre limestone pearl in the Gulf of Naples. Capri is famous for its caves by the sea, including the world-famous "Blue Grotto". 7,000 people live on Capri, two million visitors also travel there every year (including many day visitors). Especially in high summer, the international jet set heads for the island; Hollywood star Jennifer Lopez also regularly resides on Capri then.

Due to the mild climate, the island is a year-round tourist destination - and has been since the 19th century. Wine, olive and fruit trees are also grown on terraces.

Dinner Don'ts: This is how it tastes right in Italy!

8. the enchanted Cinque Terre in Liguria

Only 12 kilometres of coastline, but they are so beautiful that 2.5 million people visit every year. Cinque Terre consists of the five villages of Monterosso al Mare, Vernazza, Corniglia, Manarola and Riomaggiore. For centuries, they were virtually only accessible by sea, which makes the area incredibly pristine and incredibly beautiful to this day. (If you're not running along in a troop of tourists in the high season).

Cinque Terre has been a UNESCO World Heritage Site since 1997. The region is also protected as a national park where nothing may be built or changed. Around 7,000 people live in Cinque Terre all year round. The best way to reach the villages is on foot, by train or by boat.

7. Pisa with the most photographed tower in the world

The most famous tower in the world - even though, or rather because, it is leaning. Only 55.8 metres high, the building is a tourist magnet. As the tower continued to lean over the centuries (construction began in 1173), it had to be closed to visitors for a time. Only since 2001 has it been freely accessible again, thanks to underground weights that have pulled it 44 centimetres northwards and have kept it stable ever since. Incidentally, the inclination was reduced from 5.5 to 3.97 degrees during the rescue operation.

6 San Gimignano, the Manhattan of Tuscany

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About 7,500 inhabitants and around 3 (!) million visitors per year: the small town in Tuscany is famous for its medieval towers. The higher and wider the tower, the richer was the family that lived in it. Because the wealthy clans of the village were so hostile to each other, they lived most of the time in their own defence tower. However, it was relatively dark and cramped.

San Gimignano has mainly day visitors because of its central location in Tuscany. Find out more about San Gimignano here!

5. the Amalfi Coast with Positano & Sorrento

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Fishing villages in bright colours on craggy cliffs, incredibly blue sea and hidden, small sandy bays, plus a narrow road that seems to wind along the mountain. Four million tourists visit the Amalfi Coast around Sorrento and Positano every year. Positano in particular is also the absolute number 1 for yacht owners, influencers and anyone who wants to become one.

However, so much popularity has its price: especially in summer, there were a lot of traffic jams. That's why this year, for the first time, there was a licence plate...Regulation for the passage (even number plates may drive on even days, odd number plates on odd days). Because tourists increasingly forgot their good manners, Sorrento 2022 will also introduce a ban on bikinis in the pedestrian zone.n.

4 Florence, the city of the Bella Vita

When you come to Florence and see this light, you know why so many artists have created such wonderful things here. The city also has an incredible, a unique atmosphere. Florence, with the Uffizi Gallery, is one of the most important cities for art in the world. In addition, the capital of Tuscany offers an impressive cathedral, a beautiful old town with the built-up Ponte Vecchio, in other words: a unique bella vita feeling. A good 380,000 people live here, a good 5.1 million travel here every year.

Why you'll fall in love with Florence, by the way, you can find out here.

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3. time for reverie in Venice

Venice is like dreaming. The city of longing, of romance, of gondolas, of course. and the canals. Their beauty attracts people for centuries under her spell. However, Venice pays a high price for its worldwide popularity: for every 50,000 inhabitants in the old town, there are about 5.6 million visitors a year! In order to contain the crowds, from 2023 you will have to book a ticket for the lagoon city online in advance.

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2 Milan: The city that sleeps little

Milan, from glamour and pageantry to world-class football, alongside Fashion metropolis and also Financial centre. With the "Last Supper" by Leonardo da Vinci, the city has one of the most famous paintings in the world, and with the "Scala" one of the most famous operas in the world. Milan is Italy's second most popular city for tourists, with around 6.6 million visitors per year, and it is also the second largest city in Italy.

Find out everything else you need to know about Milan here.

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1. Rome, the city of eternity

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Unbeatable at number 1: Rome is the most popular city in Italy. More than 10 million visitors come here every year: Colosseum, Piazza di Spagna, furthermore Trevi Fountain, Pantheon & more are much more than a must. And we haven't even mentioned a visit to the Vatican yet. Rome is history you can touch - and that is incredibly impressive.

Find out what you can experience during a sunset at Piazza di Spagna here. And bet you don't know everything about the Trevi Fountain? The genesis is highly dramatic.

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For the purpose of informative value, the figures from before Corona from 2019 were used in part, as well as current figures from 2022, where available.

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written by Pietro Perroni, first published 21 November 2022

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