Rear view of woman walking in alley amidst trulli houses
22 Off The Beaten Path Tourist Destinations In Italy


Anyone who wants to feel like they have returned to the Middle Ages should plan to drop by the small town of Alberobello on the heel of “the boot” in Italy's southeast.

The houses, known as "Trulli," are made from chunky limestone blocks, have blindingly white bases, and cone-shaped, sharply-pitched roofs covered in tiles.

Assembled using an ancient building scheme, the historical significance of this architecturally wonderful town has put the buildings on the UNESCO World Heritage site list.

Ascoli Piceno

About three hours northeast of Rome, wander around Ascoli Piceno, and you'll find gorgeous piazzas, ancient churches, and beautiful, stoic, travertine buildings.

Known over 2,000 years ago as a Roman stronghold, Asculum, Ascoli Piceno was more recently a notable key base of resistance against the Germans in World War II.

Rebuilt after a fire in the mid-1500s, Palazzo dei Capitani del Popolo is a must-see complex with statues, courtyards, internal false ceilings, and a soaring tower.

Bassano del Grappa

Only an hour from the Venice airport, Bassano del Grappa is famous for a drink that appears in its name, a powerful spirit that makes a great aperitif or digestif called grappa.

From arcades to the wooden balconies that are a hallmark of the Alpine vernacular, the architecture reflects the town's location between grand plains and the foothills of the Alps.

Be sure to stop at Ponte degli Alpini, a picturesque covered bridge that spans the Brenta River and hosts a small military museum with photographs and items from both World Wars.


Balbido, in the northern part of Italy as it extends toward Austria and Switzerland, has all the Alpine charm that one would expect from a village in the mountains.

Walking around Balbido is like wandering about an open-air art museum, not just for the uniquely preserved homes but for the wealth of painted walls.

Murals of everyday life in the village are throughout, such as a man carrying logs on his back, an ox strolling on a field, workers toiling in fields, and men on horseback.


Bergamo has two parts, the upper, or the Città Alta, and the lower town, Città Bassa. To get to Città Alta, travelers can board a century-old cable railroad up a 50-degree slope.

High Venetian walls enclose the upper town, great strolling ramparts (especially at sunset), and Piazza Vecchia, the city's pulsing main square with its iconic fountain.

Città Bassa of Bergamo is charming, with vistas of the upper part, pretty Art Nouveau architecture, and the Alta Via delle Grazie walking path that leads to mountains and lakes.