Italy 2020: The ultimate list of must-visit places

Although hindsight might be 20/20, when it comes to Italy’s top-visit destinations in 2020, our foresight also is – you guessed it!

Although 2019 was all about Positano and the Amalfi Coast, and occasional celeb-spotting by sea, 2019, Parma, Rome, and the Dolomites will all be front-and-center in the eyes of the world.

How to choose Italy’s 2020 destination

How can one find the ideal Italian vacation spot for the coming year?

Perhaps you have been listening to discussions about the Dolomites, or maybe you fell in love with a photograph of Lake Garda. Maybe Parma has caught your attention or the Venice Carnival has been on your bucket list?

Amalfi Coast is a popular tourist spot in Italy.

It doesn’t matter if you are traveling to Italy solo, as a couple, or with children, Italy will be a prominent destination in your 2020 travel plans.

Let’s now take a look at the 8 must-see areas and – more specifically, the 12 breathtaking destinations that should not be missed.

Dolomites delights

The Dolomites are a mountain range in northeastern Italy. Its 18 peaks cover an impressive 350,000 acres. They also provide a backdrop to stunning locations such as Lake Garda or Cortina d’Ampezzo.

The Dolomites were declared a UNESCO World Heritage Site in August 2009. Given the incredible locations nestled within them, we thought it was time to take a look at our Top Three Dolomites Picks for 2020.

Grab your pen quickly and choose your Dolomite destination.

1. Lake Garda

Lake Garda is the largest lake in the country. It has been a favorite with visitors to Italy for many years. 2020 will not be any different.

Only the stunning views of the Dolomites can make the idyllic setting of the lake even more beautiful.

You can access the mountain range by entering the northern part of the lake. Spend summer days wandering through the charming villages that line the water and taking photos that no filter could match.

2. Cortina d’Ampezzo

You decided that 2020 would finally be your year on the slopes. Maybe skiing holidays are your forte?

It doesn’t matter what, you should make your way to Cortina d’Ampezzo. This beautiful town is located in Belluno and is only 30 minutes from the stunning Giau Pass.

The town is located in the heart of the Dolomites and offers a true paradise in winter. It is ideal for those who are interested in snow sports or want to see the locations in For Your Eyes Only. Or just to relax in a relaxing setting.

3. Bressanone

Bressanone, also known as Brixen, is the oldest town in Tyrol. It’s a resort that is open all year.

This town is as idyllic in winter and summer as it is during the summer. It is a great choice for those who love the traditional fairytale aesthetic.

Bressanone, with its narrow streets and proud steeples, is a must-see for anyone who wants to see the Dolomites.

PSSST! It can be difficult to choose a location, but it doesn’t have to be complicated when choosing a tour! Walks in Italy is an expert on Italy and its beautiful destinations. We love to share our knowledge with local-led tours.


Explore Emilia-Romagna

From the Dolomites to Emilia-Romagna

This region is located in northern Italy and boasts a remarkable 13 UNESCO Heritage Sites.

It’s also home to Bologna, Modena, and Parma – three must-visit cities in 2020. So Emilia-Romagna’s worth a look when planning your next year’s travel plans.

4. Parma

Parma river and Ponte Verdi bridge in Parma city on an autumn day

2020 is the best year to visit Parma!

It beat nine other cities to be named Italy’s Capital of Culture 2020. With so many attributes, it’s easy to see why.

It is known for its rich gastronomy scene – it was named UNESCO Creative City for Gastronomy 2015 – and lauded for its architecture, art history, and guarantees its visitors a multisensory experience.

Enjoy the beauty of Parma’s year-long celebrations of culture.

5. Bologna

View of Bologna city from Torre Asinelli at sunset

You’re probably curious about other amazing cities in the region after hearing all that Parma has to show you in 2020.

With that in mind, let’s talk Bologna

Bologna, the capital of Emilia-Romagna, is home to Europe’s oldest university. It also boasts over 50 museums. Bologna, just like Parma is worth a visit if you love food!

6. Modena

Modena (credit: Paul Shio)

The charming city of Modena is the third place in Emilia-Romagna that you should consider in 2020!

Modena, the birthplace of Luciano Pavarotti, is located between Bologna and Parma, less than an hour from each.

It is known for its cuisine, culture and cars. Ferrari named one of its models after Modena, Italy. Three UNESCO World Heritage Sites are the Piazza Grande and Duomo of San Geminiano.

Luxuriating in Lazio

We travel south from Emilia-Romagna to reach Italy’s Lazio area. Lazio is home to Rome, the capital of Italy, and it is divided into four distinct regions.

It’s one of the most visited cities in Italy. You might assume that you know what to expect from the capital.

7. Rome

Rome may be a place of refuge for historians, but it will be a top-notch destination for football fans next year!

It’s true, anyone who wants to be a part of the UEFA Euro 2020 action will want to include the Italian capital in their travel plans next year. The tournament’s opening match will take place in June. Three other games will take place in the Stadio Olimpico.

However, that’s not all. UEFA will celebrate the first UEFA Festival, which promises to ‘bring Rome to life with a celebration arts, culture and most importantly, football!

Even if you don’t have the chance to get tickets to any of these games, you can still enjoy the atmosphere at iconic tournaments such as the Euros.

Marche: Making the most of it

Our next stop on our 2020 whistle-stop tour through Italy is the Marche region. It borders the Emilia-Romagna.

Marche, which is often overlooked in favor of Tuscany, is just as beautiful and should be included in any 2020 travel plan.

We are going to be focusing our attention on five provinces: Pesaro, Urbino region and, perhaps, the city of Urbino.

8. Urbino

This medieval walled city, built on a hillside is a must-see for anyone who loves Renaissance art and history.

The Palazzo Ducale is the home of Renaissance art and was designated a UNESCO World Heritage Site for 1998.

Each August, Urbino celebrates Festa del Duca – The Duke’s Festival – that pays homage to Urbino’s medieval history and allows tourists and locals alike to get immersed in the city’s spirit.

Tuscany: A journey through the countryside

It’s no surprise that Tuscany is one of the most visited destinations in Italy.

You are home to beautiful cities like Florence, Pisa and Lucca. It’s possible you feel overwhelmed by all the incredible places at its core. Let us help you.

9. Siena

Siena is a great place to spend your time in Italy if you enjoy immersing yourself into the architecture and history of the city while slowly meandering through its narrow streets.

The Tuscan city was declared a UNESCO World Heritage Site in 1995. It is one of the most beautiful destinations you will find in Italy.

Siena is filled with beautiful churches and idyllic piazzas, and a host restaurants that will pique the interest of even the casual eater, and it’s a must-see for anyone who wants to immerse themselves in the sounds and sights of this beloved medieval city.

Continue reading: What to do in Siena…


The Veneto region, located less than two hours north from Emilia-Romagna is home to one the most famous cities in Italy, if it not the entire world.

You have guessed correctly, it is Venice!

Here are some reasons why you should make sure that the Veneto capital is on your priority list if you plan to travel to Italy in February.

10. Venice

Think Venice, think canals, think Gondolas, and think Carnivals!

The Venice Carnival is one of the most renowned festivals in the world. Next year, it will take place between 8 and 25 February. Why not join the fun and add it to your bucket list? !

Visitors travel from all corners of the globe every year to witness parades, go to balls, enjoy street parties and marvel at the unique masks that are prominently displayed throughout the city for two weeks.

Venice Carnival is an unforgettable interlude in the life of Venetians and all who travel long and far to participate in its celebrations.

Continue reading: Top Non-Touristy Things To Do & See In Venice

Basilicata’s best

Basilicata is becoming increasingly popular among tourists to Italy. It is home to two provinces, Potenza, and Matera.

Matera was awarded the European Capital of Culture 2019. Here’s what you can look forward to!

11. Matera

Parma might be Italy’s Capital of Culture 2020, but Matera, currently Europe’s Capital of Culture 2019, is flying alongside Plovdiv, Bulgaria. This will be a hit with film lovers!

Matera is the home of Sassi di Matero – an old city that was given UNESCO World Heritage Site status back in 1993 – and has links to a variety of Hollywood productions.

The Italian city was featured in Wonder Woman, The Passion of the Christ, and the remake of Ben Hur.

The sights of Sicily

It was long-legged Italy that pushed poor Sicily into the middle of the Mediterranean Sea …”

Many of us were introduced to Italian geography through this rhyme in school. We may be able to picture Sicily in our minds but how many of you have taken a trip to the country?

12. Agrigento

Valley of the Temples

The city of Agrigento is located on Sicily’s south coast. It is a must-see for anyone who is interested in archaeology or ancient history.

You will find the archeological site, Valley of the Temples in Agrigento, which was designated a World Heritage Site by the in 1997 .

The area hosts seven temples, as the name implies. They are all in different stages of preservation and well worth your time on any trip to Sicily.

Remember guys, send us a postcard if any of our must-visit places are included in your 2020 travel itinerary!

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