By Orson Johnson
A truly multi-faceted land, Italy has seen a remarkable growth in tourism. Here is a list of ten hot-spots that you just cannot afford to ignore!
1. The Roman Coliseum - One of the first Roman Amphitheatres which was inaugurated after the death Vespasian in 79AD by his son Titus, the Roman Coliseum has witnessed innumerable historical gladiatorial shows of death and violence. With a capacity of 50,000, this overwhelming historical monument is a must-see in Rome, Italy.
2. The Leaning Tower of Pisa - This marvellous work of art which started in the 12th century and took around 177 years to be completed needs no introduction. One of the third oldest structures in Pisa's Cathedral Square, the tower leans at an angle of 3.97 degrees to the southwest and remains one of the most fascinating pieces of architecture to this day.
3. La Scala, Milan - While it is a known fact that opera is at the heart of Italian culture, the La Scala Opera House is one among the most famous theatres in the world. Inaugurated on 3 August 1778, this is one place an admirer of art and opera cannot afford to miss out on while in Italy.
4. Cortina d'Ampezzo - Ideal for skiing enthusiasts, the Cortina d'Ampezzo was home to the Winter Olympics in 1956. Renowned as one among Italy's best ski resorts, this chic location in the Dolomites range is well equipped for winter sports and is a hot tourist spot.
5. Shopping in Milan - A veritable paradise for shoppers, Milan has made a name for itself in the world of fashion designing. With luxurious and expensive designer boutiques like Gucci, Prada, Armani, Moschino, Valentino, Versace and Cartier dotting its streets along with the more-pocket friendly options, this place is heaven for the fashion-conscious.
6. The Uffizi Gallery - Also known as the greatest jewel of Florence, this art museum is counted among the best in the world. It has a magnificent collection of paintings, Greek and Roman statues and houses the works of great artists like Leonardo da Vinci, Michelangelo, Titian, Rubens and Cimabue among others. This is definitely a place to visit when in Italy as it gives one the chance to admire some of the most amazing pieces of art under one roof.
7. Carnevale - This Carnival in Venice has been celebrated since centuries and it makes sense to plan a trip around late January or early February as this is the time it usually takes place. The festive atmosphere is complimented by masked balls, superb costume parades and interactive papier-mâché workshops. Truly a must-visit!
8. The Trevi Fountain (Fontana di Trevi) - One of the most beautiful fountains in the world today, the Trevi Fountain is the largest amongst Rome's Baroque Fountains. With the legendary coin-throwing superstitions, the fountain collects almost 3,000 Euros everyday. A famous tourist sight, it is known to leave visitors with a memorable experience.
9. The Vatican - When in Italy, it is impossible for one not to think of the Vatican. This city is a must visit on the list of all Catholics who visit Italy for the first time as well as other travellers who visit just for the experience.
10. Pizza - It would be a pity if you have been to Italy and have not had their world famous Pizzas. Some great places to relish the best pizzas of the world are in Naples. Restaurants like Antica Pizzeria da Michele and 'O Calamaro's are known for their freshly baked bases and innovative sumptuous toppings.
Orson Johnson writes for Holiday Velvet, a website providing Rome apartments & accommodation rentals and Holiday and Vacation Rentals.
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