22 Best Places To Visit In North Italy

By David Woutersen

Why not visit the beautiful North Italy region? This article will offer several suggestions for the best places to visit in North Italy.

From Venice to Milan, this is a great list of cities, lakes, and places that are sure to impress and leave lasting memories.

Let’s get straight into it.

1. Milan

Milan is an affluent city in Northern Italy and the second-most populous city in Italy.

It has a population of 1.35 million and a metropolitan area with a population of 3.25 million.

One of the main reasons you should visit Milan is because it’s a very modern and fashionable city.

You can enjoy many high-quality restaurants and fashion shops.

There are also many museums and galleries around the city, so they’re worth checking out as well.

2. Venice

Best places to visit in North Italy - Venice

Venice is a city in Italy, which is one of the most romantic places in the world.

It’s mostly known for its impressive architecture and canals, but it also has other things to offer. For example, there are many museums where you can learn about art history, painting, and architecture.

The popular Rialto Bridge connects two parts of the city. There are also many cafes, restaurants, and bars where you can enjoy delicious food.

3. Genoa

Genoa is a city in Northern Italy and has about 680,000 inhabitants.

It’s famous for many historical sights, including Palazzo Spinola di Pellicceria with its decorated façade. Another thing that makes Genoa unique is the Roman port.

There are also many museums where you can learn more about art history and nature.

A beautiful place with a view where you can relax in the Monumental Cemetery of Staglieno.

4. Lake Iseo (Lago di Iseo)

Lake Iseo is a lake in Northern Italy, which is also known as Sebino.

There are many beautiful villages and towns around the lake. The most famous sight nearby is Monte Isola, which is an island with about 1800 inhabitants.

You can walk along the coast, visit picturesque towns, and enjoy the beautiful nature here in North Italy.

5. Lake Garda (Lago di Garda)

Lake Garda is the largest lake in Italy and it’s a very popular destination for holidaymakers.

One of the most famous towns is Sirmione, which has stunning gardens along the shore. Another town on Lake Garda worth visiting is Riva del Garda, this beautiful town sits on the lake and offers many cafes, restaurants, shops, hotels, and bars.

There are also many other beautiful towns around the lake to explore and plenty of opportunities to get into nature, on the lake, or in the surrounding mountains.

6. Cinque Terre

Cinque Terre is a rugged portion of the coast on the Italian Riviera.

The five villages of Cinque Terre are Monterosso al Mare, Vernazza, Corniglia, Manarola and Riomaggiore.

There are many beautiful sights within the Cinque Terre towns and surrounding coast.

One of the most popular things to do is walk through the towns and explore their small streets, trails, stairs, and beaches. You can also take picturesque photos with views over the village or bay.

You can travel between towns using the train, or if the routes are open, you can hike along the coast to reach the next town.

7. Turin

Turin is a city in Northern Italy and the most populous city in Piedmont.

Many famous people have stayed here, including Napoleon Bonaparte and the former king of Italy, Umberto II.

The most famous sight in Turin is the Mole Antonelliana, which is the tallest unreinforced brick building in the world (built without a steel girder skeleton).

Another popular thing to do is visit the Olympic Stadium, which hosted the opening and closing ceremonies of the 2006 Winter Olympics and is the home stadium of Serie A football team Torino.

8. Parma

Parma is a city in Northern Italy, well-known for its food.

Some of the most famous dishes are Tortelli di zucca, Buccellato Parma, Spalla cotta Parma ham and Parmigiano-Reggiano cheese.

There are many places where you can eat these food specialties yourself, but nothing comes quite as close to tasting these dishes right where they come from.

If you’re a foodie, then one of the best places to visit in North Italy is definitely Parma.

9. Lake Como (Lago di Como)

Another beautiful lake in northern Italy is Lake Como, which is also known as the Pearl of Lombardy.

One of the most famous sights here is Villa del Balbianello, which was used in the James Bond movie “Casino Royale” in 2006.

The town Bellagio sits on Lake Como and offers many cafes, restaurants, shops, hotels, and bars and boasts a similar nickname to the lake, that being “The Pearl of Lake Como”.

10. Lake Orta (Lago d’Orta)

Lake Orta is a lake in Northern Italy.

One of the most famous sights near Lake Orta is San Giulio Island, which offers beautiful gardens with flowers and shrubs.

There are also many other beautiful towns around the lake to explore and plenty of opportunities to get into nature, on the lake, or in the surrounding mountains.

Lake Orta offers some amazing views and is a very popular destination for holidaymakers, but not as popular as the more famous lakes already mentioned.

This is a great destination for those looking for the glamour of the great Italian lakes, while still wanting to escape into the beautiful surrounding countryside.

To get to Lake Orta, you can easily take a train from Milan.

11. Bologna

Bologna is another large city in Italy and is most famous for being the home of the oldest university in the Western world, The University of Bologna.

This university has been around since 1088 and attracts many tourists to visit throughout the year.

There are also many other beautiful sights within Bologna and the surrounding area, like the Piazza Maggiore, Basilica di San Petronio, Palazzo d’Accursio, and the Botanical Garden and Herbarium (Orto Botanico ed Erbario).

You can travel around the city using buses and trams, but it’s recommended that you try to take a walk through some of the narrow streets and meandering alleyways as much as possible.

12. The Dolomites

Best places to visit in North Italy

The Dolomites are a striking group of mountain ranges in Northern Italy that were formed 200 million years ago from limestone deposits.

The landscape of the Dolomites is very picturesque and has been formed over thousands of years as a result of erosion from harsh winter weather.

There are many different types of flowers, trees, and wildlife throughout the Dolomites, all boasting some truly stunning views.

If you’re looking for a challenge to complete while visiting the Northern Italian region, then climbing in the Dolomites is a great place to start.

You can find plenty of via Ferratas and hiking routes here, even for those without much climbing experience, you will need to bring a decent level of fitness though (and there are plenty of cable stations otherwise).

Here you can find 5 great easy via Ferratas to tackle on your trip.

13. Lake Braies (Lago di Braies)

Lago di Braies, also known as Lake Braies, is a lake in Northern Italy.

This beautiful sight is famous for being the largest natural lake in the Dolomites which means it offers some amazing mountain views all around this incredible place.

While the lake itself will be sure to take your breath away, you can also commence on some great hikes in this area, with longer routes, like the Alta Via No 1, passing by the lake as well.

14. Parco Nazionale Gran Paradiso

This park is located in both Piedmont and the Aosta Valley, both beautiful regions offering something different, but you can enjoy both when visiting the park.

There are many different types of wildlife and flora and fauna to see here, like ibex and golden eagles, but most importantly there is plenty of snow too for those winter sports enthusiasts.

The park is named after Gran Paradiso mountain that is located inside the park and in 1922 it was established as Italy’s first national park.

15. Verona

Verona is the setting of Shakespeare’s Romeo and Juliet, but it’s also a beautiful city in its own right.

It offers amazing views of the Adige River along with a stunning skyline that you can see from one of the towers or buildings that line this famous sight.

The arena, a Roman amphitheater in Piazza Bra in Verona, constructed in 30 AD, is the most famous site to visit here and has been used as a setting in a number of different movies.

Today it is a popular place for tourists to come and watch opera, theater performances, dance, and concerts.

16. Trieste

Trieste is a coastal city in the north-easternmost part of Italy, in the region of Friuli-Venezia Giulia.

The Teatro Lirico Giuseppe Verdi (Teatro Verdi Trieste) is one of the most popular destinations in Trieste and it’s also home to two other great opera houses that host many events throughout the year.

There are many museums to visit in Trieste and many of these museums are dedicated to the area’s history.

Some examples include natural sciences, national archeology, literature, and others.

Trieste is a great city because it has so much culture and beauty to offer its visitors.

17. Brescia

Brescia is a city in Northern Italy and it’s surrounded by mountains, so if you’re looking for great scenery while visiting this area, you will not be disappointed.

It is famous for its beautiful Romanesque churches, like the Santa Maria Delle Grazie and the San Zeno al Foro (Chiesa San Zeno al Foro).

These ancient buildings are some of Brescia’s best attractions.

There are also many opportunities to hike around the hills and mountains that surround this region, which will provide you with some of the most stunning views on offer in North Italy.

18. Ferrara

Ferrara is another city in Northern Italy that offers some truly great views of the surrounding streets and buildings, so you will have plenty to keep your camera busy on this trip.

Not only are there many attractive buildings here but there are also a number of cathedrals, castles, towers, and gardens that portray different styles of architecture for you to see.

Ferrara is also known for its great cultural value and you can see evidence of this in many buildings and statues around the city.

The culture in Ferrara has been preserved remarkably well throughout the centuries and it is a great place to visit if you would like to learn about Italian history.

19. Mantua

Best places to visit in North Italy - Mantua

Located in Lombardy, Mantua is a city that offers its visitors many beautiful sights to behold.

There are many places where you can visit like the Palazzo del Te, Palazzo Ducale di Mantova, and the Basilica of Sant’Andrea.

Many of these buildings and sites are full of history that you can enjoy learning about.

There are also various museums here where you can learn more about Mantua’s culture, art, history, and industry.

20. Finale Liguria

Finale Liguria is a coastal town in the Italian Riviera and you can enjoy many activities here like swimming, surfing, sailing, and sunbathing.

It’s a popular destination for tourists that want to relax but there are also some historical places in Finale Liguria that will appeal to history lovers too.

If you’re looking to get out into the mountains while enjoying the beaches of the Italian Riviera, Finale Liguria is a great destination for Mountain biking as well.

21. Lake Maggiore (Lago Maggiore)

Lake Maggiore is a long lake that lies between Italy and Switzerland. It’s the second largest lake in Italy, measuring 64.37 km (40 mi) long, and 3 to 5 km (2 to 3 mi) wide.

You can enjoy activities here like swimming, fishing, sailing, windsurfing, cycling along the side of the lake, or just walking around being able to see both countries at the same time.

There are many small towns surrounding Lake Maggiore, one of which is Stresa.

If you’re looking for something relaxing to do while keeping your legs moving, try wandering around the town of Stresa. Here you can take photos of the many villas that line the coast or enjoy the many cafes and restaurants along the streets.

There’s also a beautiful church, shops, and hotels in Stresa and plenty of beautiful scenery around this lake to explore.

22. Bergamo

Bergamo is a city in Lombardy, Italy. It’s the administrative center of the Province of Bergamo and has an important commercial sector as well as numerous monuments, museums, theaters, parks, operas.

There are many beautiful buildings here to see like the Basilica of Sant’Alessandro, the Basilica of Santa Maria Maggiore, and the Rocca di Bergamo.

This is a great destination if you’re looking to learn about Bergamo’s culture and history as well because there are various museums, monuments, villas, churches, and castles for this purpose.

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