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UNESCO Heritage Sites in Italy

Italy holds the record for the most UNESCO heritage sites in the world.

There are currently 55 UNESCO sites in Italy — 50 cultural and 5 natural — and many others are under consideration.

Many travelers, including myself, use UNESCO’s lists as a guide to deciding where to go, what to see, or what to read (or write) about. UNESCO’s heritage lists provide context to a country’s history and traditions.

Following is a list of Italy’s UNESCO sites. Links to coverage of these sites on Italofile are provided where applicable and will be continuously updated.

Prosecco Hills of Italy, a UNESCO World Heritage site
Farra di Soligo, located in Italy’s Prosecco HIlls, is the most recent addition to Italy’s UNESCO World Heritage Site list. Photo © Consorzio Tutela del Vino Conegliano Valdobbiadene Prosecco Superiore DOCG

UNESCO Cultural Heritage Sites in Italy

UNESCO Natural Heritage Sites

  • Ancient and Primeval Beech Forests of the Carpathians and Other Regions of Europe
  • Isole Eolie (Aeolian Islands)
  • Monte San Giorgio
  • Mount Etna
  • The Dolomites

Italy’s Intangible Cultural Heritage

In addition to sites one can visit, Italy is also recognized by its intangible cultural heritage. These include the following:

  • Opera dei Pupi, Sicilian puppet theatre
  • Canto a tenore, Sardinian pastoral songs
  • Traditional violin craftsmanship in Cremona
  • Mediterranean diet (shared with other countries)
  • Celebrations of big shoulder-borne processional structures
  • Traditional agricultural practice of cultivating the “vite ad alberello” (head-trained bush vines) of the community of Pantelleria
  • Falconry, a living human heritage (shared with other countries)
  • Art of Neapolitan “Pizzaiuolo”
  • Art of dry stone walling, knowledge and techniques (shared with other countries)

Source: Italy’s UNESCO sites