10 places to visit in Italy that aren’t Rome

JIMMOYHT/ShutterstockRome, Italy is a popular travel destination.

  • Rome is one of the most visited travel destinations in the world, according to a 2018 report from CNN.
  • Although Rome is a beautiful place to visit, there are so many places in Italy that are also worth travelling to.
  • Parma may be a great travel destination for foodies and Trento could be a great place for those who love wine to explore.


According to a 2018 report from CNN, Rome is one of the most visited travel destinations in the world. And it’s no surprise why – the city is filled with superb restaurants, impressive historical sights, and so much more.

Although the ancient capital of Italy is a popular travel destination for a good reason, there are plenty of other Italian cities and provinces with unique architectural beauty, delightful food, and ancient history that are also worth visiting.

Here are 10 places to visit in Italy that aren’t Rome.


Naples is filled with history and famous pizza.

PixabayNaples is famous for its pizza.

You can head to this southern part of Italy to get some famous slices of pizza. In Naples, you can even find the headquarters of The True Neapolitan Pizza Association, a non-profit organisation whose mission is “to promote and protect” the true Neapolitan pizza, a style of pizza made with a specific type of tomatoes and cheese.

You can also enjoy pizza at the famed L’Antica Pizzeria Da Michele, where Julia Roberts’ character ate her slices in the movie “Eat Pray Love,” according to Serious Eats.

In this Italian city, you can also visit the historic Mount Vesuvius, the volcano behind the destruction of Pompeii that occurred in 79 AD. In addition, you can visit the historic ruins of Pompeii (a short bus ride away from Naples), explore the San Gennaro Catacombs, and much more.


Parma is a paradise for those who love meat and cheese.

iStockParma is known for its cheese.

If you really love cheese, you might want to explore the northern Italian city of Parma – there might be no other place in the world where Parmigiano-Reggiano is quite so prominent. Located in Emilia-Romagna, Parma is the place where celebrated chefs are turning the cheese into all sorts of intricate dishes.


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In an episode of the Netflix series “Salt, Fat, Acid, Heat,” host Samin Nosrat visited a cazeficio (cheese factory) in Parma to see how Parmigiano-Reggiano is made and those who visit this region can embark on tasting tours of cheese factories as well.

Parma is also well-known for its beautiful architecture in places like Sanctuary of Santa Maria della Steccata and the Baptistery of Parma as well as its selection of cured meats like culatello (an Italian ham) and prosciutto di Parma.


Modena attracts fans of opera music and sports cars.

iStockA 2018 exhibition of recent and vintage Ferrari cars in the Piazza Grande in Modena.

Modena is home to the birthplace of the Ferrari, making it a special destination for those who are fond of the luxury vehicle. The city houses the Enzo Ferrari Museum, which has exhibits dedicated to the famed sports car.

Modena is also known for its traditional balsamic vinegar and the cathedral Duomo di Modena. Fans of opera may also enjoy the city’s Luciano Pavarotti Museum, which is filled exhibits dedicated to the legendary opera singer.


Bologna is a foodie’s playground.

Alexander Tolstykh/ShutterstockThis capital is famous for its food offerings.

Arguably the top foodie destination in Emilia-Romagna is the region’s capital Bologna. It’s also known by some to be the “Italian food capital.”

Home to traditional restaurants like Polpette e Crescentine in the Mercato delle Erbe, Caffé Terzi, and Trattoria Anna Maria as well as modern spots like the FICO Eataly World (the largest food park in the world), there is something for just about everyone in Bologna.

Delicacies in the area include lasagne, tortellini (a stuffed pasta), gramigna (a type of pasta), squacquerone (a soft, white cheese), and the famed mortadella (a type of Italian sausage).

In addition to its famous selection of food, Bologna is also home to gorgeous chapels and churches like Basilica di San Petronio and Sanctuary of the Madonna di San Luca.


Reggio Calabria is known for having tourist-free beaches and stunning architecture.

Wikimedia Commons/Marcus Andersson from Tropea, Italy (CC BY-SA 2.0)Reggio Calabria is a coastal city that’s close to Sicily.

If you’re looking for a place to relax on the beach while enjoying historic architecture, you may want to explore Reggio Calabria in southern Italy.

A stone’s throw away from Sicily, Reggio boasts the National Archaeological Museum which houses the Riace Bronzes (a pair of ancient, life-size Greek statues), Monumento de Athena (a sculpture of the Greek goddess Athena), the Bergamot Museum (filled with exhibits dedicated to the aromatic fruit), Castello Aragonese (a historical, medieval castle), and even Lungomare Falcomata (a modern beach promenade).

You can also enjoy treats from gelaterias like Sottozero, where a scoop of granita (a semi-frozen dessert made from sugar, water, and various flavourings) stuffed in brioche is not an uncommon breakfast.


Noto is considered to be the Baroque capital of Italy.

iStockNoto is located in Sicily, Italy.

Named Condé Nast Traveller’s “Destination of the Summer” in 2016, Noto is a tranquil city in Sicily decorated with so much Sicilian Baroque architecture that it’s typically called the Baroque Capital of Italy. Baroque is a style of architecture and art that’s known for its extravagant and ornate flair.

In Noto, you can walk down the Corso Vittorio Emanuele, a walkway lined with Baroque establishments and churches. If you manage to get a reservation, you can also spend a night in the 18th-century Seven Rooms Villadorata, a UNESCO-protected hotel.

While in the area, you can also visit the famous 124-year-oldCaffé Sicilia for coffee and Sicilian pastries. And if you’re looking for some wine, you may want to visit the Zisola winery to drink the famous Sicilian red, Nero D’Avola.


Palermo has royal tours, wine, and more.

iStockNorman Palace, which is also called Palazzo dei Normanni.

Palermo, the capital of Sicily, earned a spot on Condé Nast Traveller’s list of the best places to go in 2019 and with so many gorgeous views and historical sights, it’s no surprise why.

In this capital city, you can visit the royals tombs at the Cathedral of Palermo, buy fresh food at the Ballarò Street Market or Mercado del Capo, and even explore Norman Palace or the well-preserved Palatine Chapel.

You can also hike to the top of Mount Pellegrino for a panoramic view of the city. And those who love wine can also take a tour of Tasca D’Almerita Winery (Regaleali) in the Palermo area to taste award-winning wines and enjoy a traditional Italian lunch.


Syracuse is filled with ancient ruins and archaeological sites.

iStockOrtigia, a city at the center of Syracuse, Italy.

History and archaeological buffs might love Syracuse, a historic city in Sicily known for its ancient ruins like the ear of Dionysius, a limestone cave carved out a hill, and the Fountain of Arethusa, a legendary natural fountain laden with papyrus plants.

Visitors might also explore the ancient and still-operating Greek Theatre in Ortigia, a small island that’s the historical center of the city. Those who are fascinated with mythology might also appreciate a trip to the Temple of Apollo, a famous Greek monument.


Trento is home to some famous wine producers.

iStockThere are quite a few vineyards in Trento, Italy.

This elegant wine city that lies on the skirts of the Dolomites in the Trentino-Alto Adige region of northern Italy is home to some of the biggest names in wine like Mezzacorona and Rotari.

Here, you can sip some of the famous varietals like pinot grigio and then check out the Duomo di Trento, Buonconsiglio Castle Museum, and the underground Roman Tridentum(an ancient Roman town that has been completely buried).


Florence is a great destination for people who are interested in history and art.

kozer / ShutterstockAn aerial view of Florence, Italy.

Florence is well-known for its stunning architecture and impressive collection of artwork. In Florence’s Accademia Gallery, you’ll find Michaelangelo’s famed David statue among many other famous sculptures and paintings from greats like Sandro Botticelli.


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This city is also home to the Florence cathedral the Duomo. The building is commonly associated with the Renaissance and is open to visitors. Inside, you can explore the Museo del Duomo and other exhibits.

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