If you’re Italian-American, it’s exciting going back to the homeland. Italy. Home to the Colosseum, Michelangelo’s Sistine Chapel, and pizza should be on every Italian-American’s bucket list of foods to try at least once in their lifetime. This list of the wonders of Italy will guide you to the best sights and activities in this beautiful country, whether you’re travelling with your whole family or just looking to explore Rome with friends. If you have Italian heritage or are just an Italian-American who loves your mother country, there’s no better time to explore Italy than during your annual vacation.
1. Florence- The Wine City
Nestled in the heart of Tuscany, Florence is a must-see for anyone visiting Italy for the first time. The city is home to some of the world’s most famous works of art, including Michelangelo’s David and Leonardo da Vinci’s The Last Supper. But Florence is more than just a museum city—it’s also a great place to enjoy a glass of wine. For those who love their Tuscan vino, visit one of the many wineries nearby or head over to Piazza del Mercato Nuovo, where you can sample wines from all over Italy!
While still at it, cuisine lovers will have a field day in Florence, one of Italy’s most famous food cities. From traditional Tuscan fare to culinary masterpieces from Chef Massimo Bottura, it will indulge every taste bud! After feasting your eyes and tummy on authentic dishes and wine in Florence, take a trip up Mount Fiesole, where you can view all of Tuscany while taking a panoramic view of Siena. However, suppose you want to see Italy. In that case, there are many ways you can get over there and have a fantastic time, whether on vacation or as part of an extended stay that leads to italian citizenship by descent!
2. Genoa- The Famous Aquarium and the Beautiful Medieval Architecture
The Aquarium of Genoa is one of Europe’s largest and most beautiful. Located on the Gulf of Genoa, this world-renowned aquarium is home to over 600 species of fish, including sharks, rays, and octopuses. The aquarium also has a beautiful butterfly garden to see some of the world’s most exotic butterflies. The Aquarium of Genoa is a must-see if you’re looking for a unique and educational experience!
It’s a fantastic place to spend time with your family or friends while learning about the incredible animals that inhabit the oceans. Also, while visiting this part of your ancestors’ homeland, don’t miss the beautiful medieval architecture in Genoa! You can visit Castello D’Albertis, built in 1577, and then stroll through Palazzo Ducale di San Giorgio. Palazzo Ducale di San Giorgio was designed by Galeazzo Alessi who was inspired by the humanist movement.
3. Milan’s Fashion District and Design
When it comes to fashion and design, Milan is unrivalled. From the high-end shops on Via Montenapoleone to the cutting-edge galleries in the Brera district, there’s something for everyone. Whether you want Versace or classic Armani, designer shoes, or handbags from Roberto Cavalli, your best bet is Milan’s Fashion District. You’ll find everything from luxury brands like Dolce & Gabbana to high street stores like H&M on the busy Corso Buenos Aires.
Also, all the big names in eyewear are here: Oakley, Carrera, and Prada. Want one more reason to visit? For eight days every February, Milan hosts a Design Week that attracts people from all over the world interested in what’s happening next in this flourishing city of style.
4. See and Hear the Story of Your Ancestry
Your ancestral home is full of history, culture, and significant landmarks that tell the story of your ancestry. The Colosseum still stands today as a testament to ancient Rome; if you’re feeling less adventurous, take a trip to Lake Como, where villas from centuries ago still grace its shores. And don’t forget about the city’s world-famous museums, like the Pinacoteca di Brera and the Museo del Novecento.
After grabbing enough culture, you can always go shopping or grab a meal at one of the many excellent restaurants. If you need some more time, consider booking an extra night here and staying in a farmhouse near Lake Como, which National Geographic rated as one of the most beautiful places on earth.
5. A Ride Along Venice’s Famous Canals
Venice is a city like no other, and one of the best ways to experience it is by taking a ride along its canals. Sit back and relax as you glide past some of the city’s most famous landmarks, including the Rialto Bridge and St. Mark’s Basilica. And don’t forget to wave to all the friendly locals you’ll see along the way! When your boat approaches the final stop, make sure to exit through the Saint Lucia Vaporetto stop.
You will be just steps away from an impressive display of Murano glass artwork at their Glass Museum. Check out their signature museum café, where they serve tasty treats alongside glasses of wine or coffee. It’s a great place to take in the breathtaking view of Venice that spans over both sides of the canal before exploring more about this world-famous city.
Italy is a beautiful country with a rich history and culture. If you are Italian-American planning on visiting Italy for the first time, I hope this guide has been helpful. Remember to pack your sunscreen, enjoy the food and wine, and take plenty of pictures! Welcome back home!