If you’re planning a trip to Italy, chances are that you’ve already heard of the popular tourist destinations like Rome, Florence, and Venice. While these cities are certainly worth visiting, there are many hidden gems that are off the beaten path in Italy and offer a unique and authentic Italian experience. Here are a few suggestions for off the beaten path travel in Italy:
Matera is a small town in southern Italy that is known for its historic caves, which were inhabited by locals until the 1950s. The town is now a UNESCO World Heritage site and has been named the European Capital of Culture for 2019. Visitors can explore the Sassi, the old town of Matera, and see how the residents lived in these cave dwellings. Matera is also a great base for exploring the surrounding area, including the nearby beaches and the stunning countryside of the Basilicata region.
Trieste is a charming city located on the border between Italy and Slovenia. It has a rich cultural heritage, with influences from Italian, Austrian, and Slavic cultures. The city is famous for its coffee culture, and visitors can enjoy a cup of espresso at one of the many historic cafes. Other highlights include the Castello di Miramare, a stunning castle built on the seafront by Archduke Ferdinand Maximilian of Austria, and the Piazza Unità d’Italia, one of the largest public squares in Europe.
Puglia is a region in southern Italy that is known for its stunning beaches, beautiful countryside, and delicious food. The region is home to some of Italy’s most charming small towns, including Alberobello, a UNESCO World Heritage site known for its trulli, or traditional cone-shaped houses. Other highlights include the town of Ostuni, known as the “White City” for its whitewashed buildings, and the Baroque city of Lecce.
- 4) ORVIETO:
Orvieto is a small town in Umbria that is perched on a cliff overlooking the surrounding countryside. The town is famous for its stunning Gothic cathedral, which features beautiful frescoes and intricate mosaics. Visitors can also explore the town’s underground tunnels, which were used as shelters during wartime and are now open to the public. Orvieto is a great base for exploring the nearby countryside, which is dotted with vineyards and olive groves.
- 5) MATERDOMINI:
Materdomini is a small town in the Campania region that is famous for its annual procession on Good Friday. The procession features a life-size statue of the dead Christ, which is carried through the streets by local men. The procession has been held for over 500 years and attracts visitors from all over the world. Materdomini is also home to a beautiful baroque church, the Sanctuary of Materdomini, which is worth a visit any time of year.
Italy is full of hidden gems that are off the beaten path and offer a unique and authentic Italian experience. From Matera’s historic caves to Trieste’s coffee culture to Puglia’s charming small towns, there is something for everyone in Italy’s lesser-known destinations. So if you’re planning a trip to Italy, consider venturing off the beaten path and discovering the country’s hidden treasures.