When visiting Italy, many travelers flock to the most renowned destinations like Rome, Venice, and Florence. While these are wonderful cities, the country also boasts endless towns and villages that are full of old-world charm and equally wonderful. They offer all the fascinating history, architecture, and culture of the main cities, just without the crowds of tourists.
Some Italian locations are more well-known than others, but there’s something about the smaller villages and towns of the country that have so much character. There’s really nothing like them!
Keep reading to find out what 10 gorgeous towns you have to visit while in Italy.
10 Verona, Veneto
Located in Italy’s north, the town of Verona has served as a popular tourist destination for centuries. Even Mozart liked to vacation there! Brimming with history and beautiful architecture, the town is a must for every kind of traveler.
Perhaps the most famous point of interest in the town is Juliet’s Balcony, which is said to be the very balcony over which Shakespeare’s Romeo and Juliet shared their famous love scene. There’s also the iconic Arena di Verona to check out, as well as a garden from the 1400s known as Giardino Giusti.
9 Pitigliano, Tuscany
Tuscany is often considered to be one of the most beautiful regions in Italy. Home to destinations like Florence, Siena, and Pisa, Tuscany is also full of lesser-known towns, like the stunning Pitigliano. Sitting atop a rocky volcanic cape, Pitigliano can be found in the south of Tuscany, in a region known as Maremma.
While you’re in Pitigliano, be sure to visit the Jewish Ghetto, as well as a range of churches that date back to the Middle Ages. This is the ultimate stop for any lover of history!
8 Corricella, Procida Island
Corricella on the island of Procida is worth a visit simply for the phenomenal photo opportunities it presents. The village is full of color and has such a unique look that it was the setting of films such as The Talented Mr. Ripley and the Italian classic Il Postino.
This fisherman’s village is perfect for exploring and offers plenty of opportunities to sample some delicious southern Italian fare. You’ll also see a variety of architecture from a range of historical periods. The island is located off the coast of Naples, in the region of Campania.
7 Atrani, Campania
Another beautiful village in the region of Campania is Atrani on the Amalfi Coast. Unlike its more famous Amalfi Coast counterparts, like Positano and Sorrento, Atrani is much less well-known by tourists. This is the perfect place for a sublime view of the coast without having to battle all the crowds.
Atrani is full of traditional piazzas, prominent churches, and trattorias serving fresh seafood. It’s also located only 30 minutes from the town of Amalfi, so it’s a great location from which to base yourself while visiting the Amalfi Coast.
6 Alberobello, Puglia
The charming small town of Alberobello is located near the city of Bari in the region of Puglia, on the eastern coast of Italy. Alberobello is known for its white-tipped houses known as Trulli. In 1996, the town was officially named a UNESCO World Heritage site, thanks to this unique feature that sets it apart from other destinations in the country.
One of the most popular things to do in Alberobello is to check out the Belvedere Trulli lookout in Piazza del Popolo. From here, you’ll be able to see the entire town in one sweeping view.
5 Castel Gandolfo, Lazio
The region of Lazio is iconic for being home to the city of Rome, the capital of Italy and one of the most popular cities in Europe. While Rome is certainly worth a visit for first-time travelers to Italy, you should also make time to visit the town of Castel Gandolfo.
Straddling Lake Albano, Castel Gandolfo is the place to go if you want gorgeous views of historic buildings and villas. Here you can dine in restaurants that are decorated with flowers and nestled neatly into the cliffsides, where they overlook the waters of the lake.
4 Castelluccio, Umbria
It isn’t the architecture in Castelluccio which makes the Umbrian village so stunning—rather, it’s the natural landscape that surrounds it. The highest village in the Apennine Mountain Range, Castelluccio is located 5,000 feet above sea level and is set against fairytale-like snow-capped mountains. On the other side of the village, you’ll find lush green meadows packed with blooming flowers.
You’ll want to visit Castelluccio during the “Flowering”, which takes place between late May and early June. This is the best time to check out the iconic poppies, rapeseed, and violets that flourish beside the town.
3 Pietrapertosa, Basilicata
Located on the side of a mountain, 3,500 feet above sea level, Pietrapertosa is a sight not to be missed. This is the place to visit if you like artifacts that are more than 1000 years old since Pietrapertosa boasts a ton of ancient ruins. One of the most iconic is a Saracen castle from the ninth century.
While in Petrapertosa, you should also make a stop at the world’s highest zip line, Il Volo dell’Angelo. You’ll find the town in the region of Basilicata, a mountainous region in the country’s south.
2 Marzamemi, Sicily
There are several reasons to visit Sicily, and one of them is Marzamemi, a fishing village that dates back over 1000 years. You could spend hours exploring the cobblestone paths of the town, admiring the beauty of old fishermen’s cottages, beautiful piazzas, and iconic sandstone buildings.
Marzamemi centers around an ancient tuna production factory, known as a tonnara, which was built by the Arabs around the year 1000 A.D. There are plenty of photo opportunities in the village, which resides on the southernmost tip of the island.
1 Vipiteno, Trentino-Alto Adige
Italy’s culture is as vast as its landscape, with the towns and villages of the north typically reflecting influences that are much more Austrian than Arabic. Vipiteno is said to be the northernmost town in Italy and definitely feels more like a central European destination rather than a village with a Mediterranean feel.
Vipiteno can be found among the Dolomites and boasts fantastic opportunities for shopping and viewing Renaissance architecture. There are also some great ski slopes located nearby, making this the ideal destination for every kind of traveler.