There are so many incredible spots in Italy to capture the most beautiful views. We’re wondering where those photographers get stunning postcard worthy pictures of the Bel Paese, but wonder no more. Italy is full of spectacular views, whether you are atop an active volcano or looking out from the bell tower of a gorgeous sun bleached church. The best part about these views is that you don’t need to be a professional photographer to capture them. Bring your camera with you or take a moment to soak in the beauty. Here are another 5 suggestions for you!
Bell Tower of San Giorgio Maggiore, Venice
Seeing Italy from above is never a bad idea and well worth the few euros for the elevator ride up a 60-meter-high bell tower in Venice. The famous St. Mark’s Basilica features long line-ups and a pricey 10 euros to ride up its bell tower. So, the secret tip is to head to San Giorgio Maggiore church and monastery for uncrowded and unspoiled views of Venice featuring the entrance to the Grand Canal and the dome of Santa Maria Salute. This 16th-century church is worth visiting on its own, with brilliant white marble against the blue water lagoon.
Mount Vesuvius, Bay of Naples
After destroying the ancient city of Pompeii, Vesuvius is one of the most famous and explored volcanoes on earth. A hike around the crater’s lip offers sweeping views of Naples, its stunning bays and Pompeii. While at the top listen closely as you can hear the occasional cascade of rocks tumbling into the crater. Observe the smoldering steam and take a moment to reflect that this powerful volcano could erupt again in your lifetime.
Corniglia-Vernazza Hiking Trail, Cinque Terre
Cinque Terre aka “Five Lands” are the five small coastal villages of Riomaggiore, Manarola, Corniglia, Vernazza and Monterosso located in Liguria. The most spectacular view in the whole area is the main hiking trail between Vernazza and Corniglia where visitors can take in the gorgeous vista of the seaside and Vernazza. You have to work for the view as this is not a moderate hike. Much of the path is steep with sheer drops to the sea below.. A pro tip is to go in the morning since the sun will be extremely bright and go straight in your camera lens in the afternoon.
Belvedere Murgia Timone, Matera
Matera is the oldest city in Italy and in Europe so make your way to the most fascinating viewpoint as soon as you arrive as it’s the only place from where you can truly understand where you are. When describing the “Sassi”, ancient neighborhoods in a series of grottoes carved out of limestone, no one can really explain how the old city is shaped or structured, nor differentiate Sasso Caveoso from Sasso Barisiano and their characteristics. The Belvedere Murgia Timone offers the most breathtaking view in all of Matera. This location is always filled with tourists so the best time to go is early in the morning before the crowds appear.
The Dome of St. Peter’s Basilica, Rome
One of the most popular viewpoints in Rome, the view from St. Peter’s Dome is one that provides an iconic perspective of St. Peter’s Square. While entering the Basilica is free, you must pay to get access to the Dome. The climb to the top consists of 551 steps and it’s absolutely worthwhile! Of course, if you pay a bit extra you can take an elevator to the first level and only climb the last 320 steps but there’s no way of avoiding them altogether if you want to get to the top!
Arianna DiCicco is an educator and writer from California, born into an Italian American restaurant family with strong ties to her grandparents’ home in Abruzzo, Italy. She has lived in San Francisco, Rome and New York City where she’s made deep connections within the Italian communities and gained new perspectives about her own culture. With a Masters in International Education, Arianna has a love and passion for learning and educating others about Italian history & culture.