Scroll to Top
Win a luxury 2-night sparkling Sussex break with Pride of Britain Hotels

The best Italian Unesco Heritage sites to visit in 2022

If you’re wondering which of the 50 World Heritage Sites to base your trip around, then here are a few of the best ones for starters.

By LLM Reporters  |  March 20, 2022
Ruins of Pompey after eruption of a volcano of Vesuvius

When it comes to rich culture, intriguing history and mouth-watering cuisine, few nations have got quite as much to offer as Italy. This captivating European nation is packed with bustling cities that are awash with museums and art galleries showcasing works from iconic Italian artists, while beautiful rugged coastlines are punctuated with sun-soaked pebbly beaches and azure waters you won’t be able to wait to dip your toe into.

Everywhere you go, quaint trattorias and osterias serve up tasty local fare just about everywhere you go – and then, there are the rolling green hills of scenic Tuscany, home to some of the country’s most-renowned wine regions, like Chianti and Montepulciano.

But one of the most impressive things about Italy, and one of its biggest draws for affluent tourists, is its seemingly endless array of UNESCO World Heritage Sites, which make up more than five percent of the global list. With 51 in total, and another 40 spots currently under consideration for future addition, there’s no denying that Italy is one of the best destinations in the world for those looking for remarkable landmarks. 

If you’re eager to book a luxurious getaway for the summer, then nowhere is more magical – and suffice it to say that the Italians are no strangers to opulence. Here, you’ll find all manner of historic five-star hotels and fine dining eateries to pause at for dinner. The discount codes and offers from lastminute.com might save you some money on your trip, too, so there’s more to splurge on fine wines – after all, even for those of us for whom money is no object would prefer to splash out on the things we love.

If you’re wondering which of the 50 World Heritage Sites to base your trip around, then here are a few of the best ones for starters. Add them to your list for 2022, and you’re guaranteed a memorable adventure.

Historic Centre of Rome

Colosseum in Rome, Italy
The Colosseum is the largest amphitheatre built during the Roman Empire

Perhaps one of the most obvious inclusions on the list, the historic centre of Rome was first recognised as a UNESCO World Heritage Site in 1980. According to legend, it’s said to have been formed by Romulus and Remus all the way back in 753 BCE, when it was the first centre of the Roman Empire, and includes iconic sites like the Colosseum, the Roman Forums, the Pantheon, and Trajan’s Column. When it comes to destinations that are rich in history, it really doesn’t get any better, and Rome is a city everyone should visit at least once in their lifetime.

Medici Villas and Gardens, Tuscany

Comprising twelve stunning villas and two sprawling gardens within the verdant Tuscan landscape, this impressive and beautiful site bears testimony to the famous Medici family and their influence over modern European culture. Rulers of Florence throughout the Renaissance, they are often credited for their patronage of the arts, and their villas and gardens were one of the first examples of connection between architecture, gardens and the environment, going on to become ‘an enduring reference for princely residences across Europe.

The perfect place for a leisurely stroll in the countryside on your way to Tuscany’s many vineyards and wineries or during a peaceful break immersed in nature, it’s truly an impressive sight to behold.

Pompei, Herculaneum and Torre Annunziata

Ruins of a city. Pompeii is an ancient Roman city died from the eruption of Mount Vesuvius in 79 AD.
Pompeii was an ancient Roman town-city near modern Naples, in the Campania region of Italy, in the territory of the comune of Pompei. Image credit: scaliger/Bigstock.com

On the 24th August, 79 CE, the Mount Vesuvius volcano erupted with devastating results. It engulfed the two rapidly growing towns of Pompei and Herculaneum, and today, the excavated sites are open to the public for visits. Perhaps one of the sadder sites to see during a luxury break to Italy, it is still very much worth your time, and the beautiful wall paintings of the Villa Oplontis provide an interesting insight into the opulent lifestyle that was enjoyed by the area’s wealthiest citizens early on in the Roman Empire. If you’re visiting the chic and sophisticated Amalfi Coast, then Pompeii is easily reachable by train from Sorrento.

The Historic Centre of Florence

San Marco religious complex in Florence historical centre with Basilica di San Marco St Mark english church, convent and Museo Nazionale
Cradle of the Renaissance, romantic, enchanting and utterly irresistible, Florence is a city to feast on world-class art and gourmet Tuscan cuisine. Image credit: Aliaksandr Antanovich/Bigstock.com

The number one destination for art lovers, the city of Florence is home to a plethora of iconic art galleries, including the Uffizi Gallery and the Accademia – home to Michelangelo’s most famous sculpture, ‘David’. Florence has seen over 600 years of activity from the world’s most renowned artists, and fans of great masters such as Botticelli, Giotto and Brunelleschi will delight in the many examples of their work over the years.

Florence also has a great foodie scene, which is another good reason to visit the city – Bistecca Fiorentina, Zuccotto and Piselli are all must-tries, and taste incredible washed down with a glass of locally produced wine.