International travel has started to pick up again, and because Italy has always been a top destination for spring and summer vacations, an online travel platform recently conducted a study to determine Italy’s most popular attractions by region.
The digital travel discovery and booking platform Musement considered nearly 2,000 tourist attractions in Italy’s 20 regions (excluding squares and attractions shared by one or more regions). The attraction with the highest number of Google reviews for each region as of January 2022 was considered the most popular.
Italy’s Most Popular Attractions by Category
Castles and Fortresses:
Castles and fortresses are the most popular attraction in five regions, with the Fortress of Bard receiving the highest number of reviews in Northern Italy’s Aosta Valley (11,611 reviews) and Miramare Castle most popular in Friuli-Venezia Giulia (18,490 reviews). In the Marche, Abruzzo, and Molise regions, the most popular attractions are also castles – the medieval Gradara Castle built in 1150 (19,252 reviews), the Castle of Rocca Calascio (8,344 reviews), and the 13th-century Castello Svevo of Termoli (1,522 reviews) respectively.
Fun Fact: The Fortress of Bard was the set for the Hydra headquarters in “Avengers: Age of Ultron” (2015).
Museums and Archeological Parks:
The Archaeological Park of Pompeii in Campania topped this category with 44,244 reviews, followed by the Valley of the Temples in Agrigento in Sicily with 35,160 reviews.
For museums, the Egyptian Museum of Turin in Piedmont, which displays one of the most significant Ancient Egyptian collections in the world, received 34,730 reviews. Two historical centers were also rewarded for their uniqueness: the alleys, hidden churches, and cave houses of Sassi di Matera in Basilicata (31,551 reviews) and the collection of traditional ancient structures known as the Trulli of Alberobello in Puglia (31,027 reviews), both UNESCO World Heritage Sites.
Aquariums and Theme Parks:
Thanks to its 12,000 animal specimens, the Aquarium of Genoa (the largest aquarium in Europe) is the most popular tourist attraction in Liguria with 47,897 reviews, while Fico Eataly World theme park (one of the largest agri-food parks in the world) is the most popular in Emilia-Romagna with 38,918 reviews. The only protected natural area on the list is La Pelosa Beach in Sardinia (12,810 reviews), a marine protected area located in the Gulf of Asinara.
Four Most Popular Attractions in Italy Overall
4. Among the most popular points of interest – and placing 4th overall – is the Ponte Vecchio spanning the Arno River in Florence (the Tuscany region), with 104,854 reviews.
3. Taking third place in the national ranking is the Duomo of Milan in Lombardy – one of Italy’s most visited attractions ever – with 106,747 reviews, and one of only two cathedrals to be included (along with Umbria’s Basilica of St. Francis of Assisi).
2. The 48-meter-long Rialto Bridge crossing the Grand Canal in Venice (the Veneto region) is the second highest-ranked attraction with 120,953 reviews.
1. With 294,024 reviews, the top spot goes to the Trevi Fountain in Rome (the Lazio region), which not only beat out the Colosseum as the most popular tourist attraction in Lazio but is the most popular in all of Italy. They say if you toss a coin in the Trevi Fountain, you’re certain to return to Rome, so that would explain why one of the most famous fountains in the world is also Italy’s most popular attraction.
Click here for Musement’s complete list of Italy’s most popular tourist attractions.
Did your favorite Italian attraction make the list? Let us know in the comments.