The UN World Heritage Committee will hold their decisive meeting on July 7th in Baku, Azerbaijan, but the International Council of Monuments and Sites, the Unesco advisory body, seems to be in favor of the application of the Prosecco Hills of Conegliano and Valdobbiadene to become a UNESCO Heritage Cultural Landscape. Therefore, it would seem that...

Legend has it that the grotto hidden among the craggy cliffs on San Marco hill in Sutera in the heart of Sicily holds a treasure chest full of gold coins. In order to find it, three men must dream simultaneously about the precise place to dig. Treasure or no treasure, the grotto itself is an archaeological gem, its walls adorned with a multi-colour...

Despite being one of the most famous and appreciated seaside resorts in Italy, Cinque Terre (the Five Lands) are one of the perfect Italian tourist locations for short trips or a long weekend and are ideal in any season of the year. Not surprisingly the Cinque Terre are part of the UNESCO World Heritage sites. They make up a panorama of incomparabl...

A mosaic made of thousands of hand-cut Murano glass tiles fills the walls of an alcove in Annunciation Greek Orthodox Church's sanctuary. The new artwork — centered with an image of Christ with St. Gregory the Theologian, St. John Chrysostom, St. James the First Bishop of Jerusalem and St. Basil the Great — was installed in April in time for the Gr...

The Unesco-inscribed town of Sabbioneta between Mantua and Parma is considered a true model of an ‘ideal city.’ Over the course of a few decades, what had been a small fortified village was entirely rebuilt by nobleman and condottiero Vespasiano Gonzaga, according to the Renaissance principles of proportion and the ideal of harmony as symbolized in...

If you want to enjoy Italy away from the crowds, you can often do so by heading to one of the country’s many evocative villages. But if you prefer a more urban setting without having to deal with the tourist throngs in Rome, Florence and Venice, try a lesser-known city destination like the five described below (four have UNESCO World Heritage desig...

With the longer days and warmer hours, Spring has finally sprung in Matera and the historic southern Italian city is making the most of its role as European Capital of Culture 2019. Two key projects are at the heart of this year's event. The first, called I-Dea, uses archives and collections from the Basilicata region. Joseph Grima is Matera 2019's...

You won’t need anyone to tell you when you arrive in Puglia’s Itria Valley. You’ll know you’re there when you see mysterious stone buildings with conical roofs suddenly appearing everywhere you look. You might need to remind yourself that you haven’t suddenly entered a fairy tale land peppered with miniature castles. Instead, you will see for yours...

Strike up the bands! We’re talking about marching bands drawn from 131 villages in the southern Italian region of Basilicata, joined by 10 bands from elsewhere in Italy and Europe. They filled the squares, alleyways and courtyards citywide for the colorful opening ceremonies on Jan. 19 saluting Matera, 2019 Cultural Capital of Europe (a twin-bill w...

This stunning architectural complex at Caserta – which includes the Royal Palace, its magnificent gardens, the San Leucio complex, and the Aqueduct of Vanvitelli –  is a true wonder. The large palace, often compared to luxurious buildings like Versailles and the Royal Palace in Madrid, is a UNESCO’s World Heritage Site. The construction of the pala...