List of World Heritage Sites in Italy
The World Heritage Sites are places of importance to cultural or natural heritage as described in the UNESCO World Heritage Convention, established in 1972. Italy ratified the convention on June 23, 1978, making its historical sites eligible for inclusion on the list.
Sites in Italy were first inscribed on the list at the 3rd Session of the Rhaetian Railway in the Albula / Bernina Landscapes" with Switzerland; "Historic Centre of Rome" with the Vatican; and "Prehistoric pile dwellings around the Alps" with Austria, France, Germany, Slovenia and Switzerland. Four World Heritage Sites in Italy are of the natural type, all others are cultural sites (46). Therefore Italy has the largest number of world cultural heritage sites followed by Spain with 39 cultural sites.
World Heritage Sites
The table lists information about each World Heritage Site:
- Name: as listed by the World Heritage Committee
- Location: city and region of site
- Area: size of property and buffer zone
- UNESCO data: the site's reference number; the year the site was inscribed on the World Heritage List; the criteria it was listed under: criteria i through vi are cultural, while vii through x are natural; (the column sorts by year added to the list)
- Description: brief description of the site
|18th-Century Royal Palace at Caserta with the Park, the Aqueduct of Vanvitelli, and the San Leucio Complex||
Provinces of Caserta and Benevento, Campania, Italy
||87 (210); buffer zone 111 (270)||549; 1997; i, ii, iii, iv||Large scale palace and park created by the Bourbon King of Naples Charles III in the mid 18th century. It is notable for blending into the environment. The site also includes an ambitious new town and industrial complex.|
|Archaeological Area and the Patriarchal Basilica of Aquileia||
Province of Udine, Friuli-Venezia Giulia, Italy
||155 (380)||825; 1998; iii, iv, vi||Remains of one of the wealthiest cities of the Early Roman Empire including mosaic floors and a basilica that played a major role in spreading Christianity in the early Middle Ages.|
|Archaeological Area of Agrigento||
Province of Agrigento, Sicily, Italy
||934 (2,310); buffer zone 1,869 (4,620)||831; 1997; i, ii, iii, iv||Well preserved remains of a great city of the ancient Mediterranean with seven doric temples making it one of most notable sites of Greek art and culture.|
|Archaeological Areas of Pompei, Herculaneum and Torre Annunziata||
Province of Naples, Campania, Italy
||98 (240); buffer zone 24 (59)||829; 1997; iii, iv, v||Remains of two towns that had been buried by an eruption of Vesuvius in AD 79; giving an unmatched picture of ancient daily life at a specific moment in time.|
|Assisi, the Basilica of San Francesco and Other Franciscan Sites||
||14,563 (35,990); buffer zone 4,087 (10,100)||990; 2000; i, ii, iii, iv, vi||Medieval city with notable pieces of art and architecture; birthplace of the Franciscan order.|
|Botanical Garden (Orto Botanico), Padua||
City and Province of Padua, Veneto, Italy
||2.20 (5.4); buffer zone 11 (27)||824; 1997; ii, iii||World's first botanical garden has been a center of scientific research and retains its original layout from 1545.|
|Castel del Monte||
Andria and Corato, Province of Bari, Puglia, Italy
||3.10 (7.7); buffer zone 10,847 (26,800)||398; 1996; i, ii, iii||Built by Emperor Frederick II in the 13th century, the castle blends northern European Cistercian gothic, muslim architecture and elements from the classical antique in a perfectly symmetrical design.|
|Cathedral, Torre Civica and Piazza Grande, Modena||
City and Province of Modena, Emilia–Romagna, Italy
||1.20 (3.0); buffer zone 1.10 (2.7)||827; 1997; i, ii, iii, iv||This 12th century cathedral built by Lanfranco (architect) and Wiligelmo (sculptor) is an excellent example of early Romanesque art.|
|Church and Dominican Convent of Santa Maria delle Grazie with "The Last Supper" by Leonardo da Vinci||
Province of Milano, Lombardy, Italy
||1.50 (3.7)||93; 1980; i, ii||The convent houses the mural painting "The Last Supper", a masterpiece by Leonardo da Vinci and one of the world's most famous paintings.|
|Cilento and Vallo di Diano National Park with the Archeological sites of Paestum and Velia, and the Certosa di Padula||
Province of Salerno, Campania, Italy
||159,110 (393,200); buffer zone 178,101 (440,100)||842; 1998; iii, iv||Exceptional cultural landscape with settlements and sanctuaries reflecting its historical position on a trade route and related cultural and political exchange in prehistoric and medieval times. The site includes Paestum and Velia, remains of two major towns from classical times.|
|City of Verona||
City and Province of Verona, Veneto, Italy
||453 (1,120); buffer zone 431 (1,070)||797; 2000; ii, iv||Historical city that preserves urban structures and architecture from 2,000 years of uninterrupted development.|
|City of Vicenza and the Palladian Villas of the Veneto||
Provinces of Padua, Rovigo, Treviso, Venice, Verona and Vicenza, Veneto, Italy
||334 (830)||712; 1994;[nb 1] i, ii||
Urban buildings and villas in the surrounding Veneto region designed by Andrea Palladio had a major influence and architecture and inspired the Palladian style.
Province of Salerno, Campania, Italy
||11,231 (27,750)||830; 1997; ii, iv, v||Outstanding example of a Mediterranean coastal landscape with notable architecture and art as well as a rural landscape testifying to the adaptation to the diverse mountaineous landscape.|
Province of Bergamo, Lombardy, Italy
||—||730; 1995; iv, v||Well preserved and partially in use company town built in the 19th and 20th centuries for the workforce of a textile manufacturer. The town includes both residential buildings and common public services such as a clinic, a school, theatre or sports centre.|
|Early Christian Monuments of Ravenna||
City and Province of Ravenna, Emilia-Romagna, Italy
||1.32 (3.3)||788; 1996; i, ii, iii, iv||Unique collection of high quality early Christian mosaics from as early as the 5th century at a former seat of the Roman Empire and later of Byzantine Italy.|
|Etruscan Necropolises of Cerveteri and Tarquinia||
Provinces of Rome and Viterbo, Lazio, Italy
||21 (52); buffer zone 5,786 (14,300)||1158; 2004; i, iii, iv||Etruscan cemeteries from the 9th to the 1st century BCE with outstanding wall paintings depicting scenes of daily life of this ancient culture.|
|Ferrara, City of the Renaissance, and its Po Delta||
City and Province of Ferrara, Emilia–Romagna, Italy
||46,712 (115,430); buffer zone 117,649 (290,720)||733; 1995;[nb 2] ii, iii, iv, v, vi||
Intellectual and artistic centre during the Italian Renaissance of the 15th and 16th century with well preserved urban landscape.
|Genoa: Le Strade Nuove and the system of the Palazzi dei Rolli||
Province of Genoa, Liguria, Italy
||16 (40); buffer zone 113 (280)||1211; 2006; ii, iv||Renaissance and Baroque palaces from the late 16th to early 17th centuries developed by public authorities.|
|Historic Centre of Florence||
City and Province of Florence, Tuscany, Italy
||505 (1,250)||174; 1982; i, ii, iii, iv, vi||Symbol of the renaissance with extraordinary architecture and art such as the Basilica of Santa Croce, the Uffizi or the Pitti Palace.|
|Historic Centre of Naples||
City and Province of Naples, Campania, Italy
||1,021 (2,520); buffer zone 1,350 (3,300)||726; 1995; ii, iv||Founded in 470 BCE by Greek settlers, Naples is one of the most ancient cities in Europe. A large number of monuments such as the church of Santa Chiara or Castel Nuovo are testament of various cultures that emerged in Europe and the Mediterranean.|
|Historic Centre of Rome, the Properties of the Holy See in that City Enjoying Extraterritorial Rights and San Paolo Fuori le Mura||
Holy See; Rome, Lazio, Italy
||1,485 (3,670)||91; 1980; i, ii, iii, iv, vi||Rome, center of the Roman Empire and later, from the 4th century, of the Christian world is home to a large number of major monuments of antiquity. Included in the site are also religious and public buildings of the Holy See.|
|Historic Centre of San Gimignano||
San Gimignano, Province of Siena, Tuscany, Italy
||14 (35)||550; 1990; i, iii, iv||Small medieval hill town noted for its tower-houses of which 14 survive.|
|Historic Centre of Siena||
City and Province of Siena, Tuscany, Italy
||170 (420); buffer zone 9,907 (24,480)||717; 1995; i, ii, iv||Exceptional medieval city that has preserved its gothic appearance from the 12th to 15th century.|
|Historic Centre of the City of Pienza||
Pienza, Province of Siena, Tuscany, Italy
||4.41 (10.9)||789; 1996; i, ii, iv||On decision of Pope Pius II Pienza was chosen in 1459 to be the first city to be transformed according to Renaissance Humanist ideas of urban design.|
|Historic Centre of Urbino||
Province of Pesaro, Marche, Italy
||29 (72); buffer zone 3,609 (8,920)||828; 1998; ii, iv||Small hill town with exceptional Renaissance architecture dated to a short period of cultural flowering in the 15th century.|
|Isole Eolie (Aeolian Islands)||
Southern Tyrrhenian Sea, Italy
||1,216 (3,000)||908; 2000; viii||This archipelago features prominently in the science and education of the field of vulcanology, containing classical features of volcanic landforms.|
|Late Baroque Towns of the Val di Noto (South-Eastern Sicily)||
Provinces of Catania, Ragusa and Syracuse, Sicily, Italy
||113 (280); buffer zone 306 (760)||1024; 2002; i, ii, iv, v||Eight towns (Caltagirone, Militello Val di Catania, Catania, Modica, Noto, Palazzolo, Ragusa and Scicli) rebuilt after destruction in the 1693 earthquake, representing the pinnacle of late Baroque art in Europe.|
|Longobards in Italy. Places of the power (568-774 A.D.)||
||14 (35); buffer zone 306 (760)||1318; 2011; ii, iii, vi||Monasteries, churches and fortresses associated with the Longobards who settled in Italy from the 6th to the 8th century. The site is spread over seven towns in Italy (Brescia, Cividale del Friuli, Castelseprio, Spoleto, Campello sul Clitunno, Benevento and Monte Sant'Angelo). Its architecture marks a synthesis of various styles and the transition to the Middle Ages.|
|Mantua and Sabbioneta||
||235 (580); buffer zone 2,330 (5,800)||1287; 2008; ii, iii||Two towns representative of Renaissance period town planning: Mantua originating in Roman times and preserving structures from the 11th century was renovated in the 15th and 16th century, while Sabbioneta was devised as "ideal town" in the second half of the 16th century|
|Medici Villas and Gardens in Tuscany||
||125 (310); buffer zone 3,539 (8,750)||175; 2013; ii, iv, vi||Twelve villas and two gardens built under patronage of the Medici family in the 15th to 17th centuries. They are the first example of combining aristocratic residences with gardens in a natural environment an idea that was taken up throughout Italy and Europe.|
|Monte San Giorgio||
Lombardy, Italy; Ticino, Switzerland
||1,089 (2,690); buffer zone 3,207 (7,920)||1090; 2003; viii||
World's best location for fossil records of marine life from the Triassic period (250 to 200 Ma).
||19,237 (47,540)||1427; 2013; viii||As one of the world's most active volcanoes showing a diverse range of volcanic features and notable ecosystems, Mount Etna is of great scientific and cultural interest.|
|Piazza del Duomo, Pisa||
City and Province of Pisa, Tuscany, Italy
||8.87 (21.9); buffer zone 254 (630)||395; 1987; i, ii, iv, vi||
This walled area is one of the finest architectural complexes in the world and includes four medieval masterpieces from the 11th to 14th century: the cathedral, baptistry, cemetery and the leaning tower.
|Portovenere, Cinque Terre, and the Islands (Palmaria, Tino and Tinetto)||
Province of La Spezia, Liguria, Italy
||4,689 (11,590)||826; 1997; ii, iv, v||Particularly scenic coastal area with small towns built among the steep rugged terrain.|
|Prehistoric Pile dwellings around the Alps||
Austria; France; Germany; Italy; Slovenia; Switzerland
||274 (680); buffer zone 3,961 (9,790)||1363; 2011; iv, v||Contains 111 small individual sites in six countries with the remains of prehistoric pile-dwelling (or stilt house) settlements in and around the Alps built from around 5000 to 500 B.C. on the edges of lakes, rivers or wetlands. While only some of the sites have been excavated, they contain a wealth of information on life and trade in agrarian Neolithic and Bronze Age cultures in Alpine Europe. All of the 19 Italian sites are located in Northern Italy.|
|Residences of the Royal House of Savoy||
Province of Torino, Piedmont, Italy
||371 (920); buffer zone 6,931 (17,130)||823; 1997;[nb 3] i, ii, iv, v||
Complex of buildings created to demonstrate the power of the ruling monarchy following the move of the capital to Torino by Emmanuel Philibert, Duke of Savoy in 1562. The buildings are representative of 17th and 18th century European monumental architecture.
|Rhaetian Railway in the Albula / Bernina Landscapes||
||152 (380); buffer zone 109,386 (270,300)||1276; 2008; ii, iv||Railway line over a total length of 128 (80) in the Swiss Alps crossing two passes in severe mountain landscapes. With 55 tunnels or galleries and 192 viaducts and bridges it represents a technical and architectural feat while being in harmony with its environment.|
|Rock Drawings in Valcamonica||
Province of Brescia, Lombardy, Italy
||432 (1,070); buffer zone 1,018 (2,520)||94; 1979; iii, vi||Huge number of 140,000 engravings depicting scenes from agriculture, navigation, war and magic. The carvings have been created in a valley over a period of 8,000 years from the Epipaleolithic until the Roman and medieval times.|
|Sacri Monti of Piedmont and Lombardy||
Lombardy, Piedmont, Italy
||91 (220); buffer zone 722 (1,780)||1068; 2003; ii, iv||Nine sacred mountains (ital.: "sacri monti") with chapels and other architectural features built in the late 16th and 17th centuries for didactic and spiritual purposes. They are particularly noteworthy for the skill with which they have been integrated into a beautiful natural landscape.|
|Su Nuraxi di Barumini||
Barumini, Province of Medio Campidano, Sardinia, Italy
||2.33 (5.8); buffer zone 3.92 (9.7)||833; 1997; i, iii, iv||Finest and most complete nuraghe settlement from the 2nd millenium BC: a unique kind of defensive structure consisting of circular defensive towers in the form of truncated cones built of dressed stone, with corbel-vaulted internal chambers, that only exists on the island of Sardinia.|
|Syracuse and the Rocky Necropolis of Pantalica||
City and Province of Syracuse, Sicily, Italy
||898 (2,220); buffer zone 5,519 (13,640)||1200; 2005; ii, iii, iv, vi||The Necropolis of Pantalica contains more than 5,000 tombs, most dating from the 13th to the 7th centuries BC, and remains of Byzantine era structures. On the other hand the city of Syracuse includes its 8th century BC nucleus and many other remains bearing testimony to its eventful history.|
||141,903 (350,650); buffer zone 89,267 (220,580)||1237; 2009; vii, viii||Mountain range in the Northern Italian Alps with 18 peaks above 3,000 (9,800), and some of the world's most beautiful mountain scenery including sheer rocky cliffs, vertical walls, long and narrow valleys.|
|The Sassi and the Park of the Rupestrian Churches of Matera||
City and Province of Matera, Basilicata, Italy
||1,016 (2,510); buffer zone 4,365 (10,790)||670; 1993; iii, iv, v||Most outstanding example of cave dwellings in the Mediterranean with parts of it dating to the Palaeolithic.|
|The Trulli of Alberobello||
Province of Bari, Puglia, Italy
||11 (27)||787; 1996; iii, iv, v||Small town with trulli, limestone huts in a prehistoric drywall technique, usually featuring conical, domed or pyramidal roofs of corbelled stone slabs.|
Province of Siena, Tuscany, Italy
||61,188 (151,200); buffer zone 5,660 (14,000)||1026; 2004; iv, vi||Part of the hinterland of Siena, the landscape was carefully redesigned during the Renaissance (14th and 15th century) to reflect an idealized model of government and to create a pleasing picture. It featured prominently in paintings of the time.|
|Venice and its Lagoon||
Province of Venezia, Veneto, Italy
||—||394; 1987; i, ii, iii, iv, v, vi||Founded in the 5th century and rising to prominence as a maritime power in the 10th century, Venice's unique location on 118 small islands harbors a large number of architectural masterpieces and major works by some of the greatest artists. |
|Villa Adriana (Tivoli)||
Tivoli, Province of Rome, Lazio, Italy
||80 (200); buffer zone 500 (1,200)||907; 1999; i, ii, iii||Villa Adriana or "Hadrian's Villa" is a 2nd century complex of classical buildings constructed by Emperor Hadrian combining architectural elements of Greece, Egypt and Rome.|
|Villa d'Este, Tivoli||
Tivoli, Province of Rome, Lazio, Italy
||4.50 (11.1); buffer zone 7.00 (17.3)||1025; 2001; i, ii, iii, iv, vi||Fine example of an Italian Renaissance palace and garden from the 16th century, the gardens of Villa d'Este are one of the Grandi Giardini Italiani and had a large influence on European garden design.|
|Villa Romana del Casale||
Piazza Armerina, Province of Enna, Sicily, Italy
||8.92 (22.0); buffer zone 10 (25)||832; 1997; i, ii, iii||One of the most luxurious Roman villas built in the early 4th century and decorated with mosaics of exceptional quality.|
|Vineyard Landscape of Piedmont: Langhe-Roero and Monferrato||
||10,789 (26,660); buffer zone 76,249 (188,420)||1390; 2014; iii, v||Winegrowing and processing area for Piemonte wine with a long history going back to at least the 5th century BC. The site includes the Castle of Grinzane Cavour.|
In addition to sites inscribed on the World Heritage list, member states can maintain a list of tentative sites that they may consider for nomination. Nominations for the World Heritage list are only accepted if the site was previously listed on the tentative list. As of 2014, Italy recorded 40 sites on its tentative list. The sites, along with the year they were included on the tentative list are:
- Lake Maggiore and Lake D'Orta lakelands (2006)
- Historic centre of Pavia and Chartreuse (2006)
- The city of Bergamo (2006)
- Hanbury botanical gardens (2006)
- Historic Centre of Lucca (2006)
- Orvieto (2006)
- Via Appia "Regina Viarum" (2006)
- Villas of the Papal Nobility (2006)
- Historic Centre of Parma (2006)
- Salento and the "Barocco Leccese" (2006)
- Cattolica Monastery in Stilo and Basilian-Byzantine complexes (2006)
- Ponds in the Bay of Oristano and the Sinis Peninsula island of Mal di Ventre (2006)
- Scrovegni's Chapel (2006)
- Fortress Town of Palmanova (2006)
- Romanesque Cathedrals in Puglia (2006)
- Monte Sant' Angelo and the Via Sacra Langobardorum (2006)
- Taormina and Isola Bella (2006)
- Archipelago of La Maddalena and Islands of Bocche di Bonifacio (2006)
- Mothia Island and Lilibeo: The Phoenician-Punic Civilization in Italy (2006)
- Bradyseism in the Flegrea Area (2006)
- Cascata delle Marmore and Valnerina: Monastic sites and ancient hydrogeological reclamation works (2006)
- Pelagos: The Cetacean Sanctuary (2006)
- Island of Asinara (2006)
- Sulcis Iglesiente (2006)
- The Marble Basin of Carrara (2006)
- The Transhumance: The Royal Shepherd's Track (2006)
- Volterra: Historical City and Cultural Landscape (2006)
- The Aniene valley and Villa Gregoriana in Tivoli (2006)
- The Murge of Altamura (2006)
- The Porticoes of Bologna (2006)
- Karstic caves in prehistoric Apulia (2006)
- Citadel of Alessandria (2006)
- The Lower Palaeolithic Palaeosurfaces at Isernia-La Pineta and Notarchirico (2006)
- Massif du Mont-Blanc (together with France and Switzerland) (2008)
- Arab-Norman Palermo and the cathedral churches of Cefalù’ and Monreale (2010)
- The Prosecco Hills of Conegliano and Valdobbiadene. (Le Colline del Prosecco di Conegliano e Valdobbiadene (2010)
- Parco Nazionale della Sila – Sila, gran bosco d’Italia (2012)
- Ivrea, industrial city of the 20th century (2012)
- Espace transfrontalier Marittime-Mercantour (Les Alpes de la Mer) (together with France) (2013)
- The Venetian Works of defence between 15th and 17th centuries (2013)
- Extended in 1996 to include sites outside of the vicinity of Vicenza and name change from Vicenza, City of Palladio to the present name.
- Extended in 1999 to include the Po Delta and name change from Ferrara, city of the Renaissance to the present name.
- Minor modification of boundaries in 2010.
- "The World Heritage Convention". UNESCO. Retrieved September 17, 2010.
- "Italy – Properties inscribed on the World Heritage List". UNESCO. Retrieved July 29, 2014.
- "Report of the Rapporteur". UNESCO. November 30, 1979. Retrieved July 12, 2014.
- "18th-Century Royal Palace at Caserta with the Park, the Aqueduct of Vanvitelli, and the San Leucio Complex".
- "Archaeological Area and the Patriarchal Basilica of Aquileia".
- "Archaeological Area of Agrigento".
- "Archaeological Areas of Pompei, Herculaneum and Torre Annunziata".
- "Assisi, the Basilica of San Francesco and Other Franciscan Sites".
- "Botanical Garden (Orto Botanico), Padua".
- "Castel del Monte".
- "Cathedral, Torre Civica and Piazza Grande, Modena".
- "Church and Dominican Convent of Santa Maria delle Grazie with "The Last Supper" by Leonardo da Vinci".
- "Cilento and Vallo di Diano National Park with the Archeological sites of Paestum and Velia, and the Certosa di Padula".
- "City of Verona".
- "City of Vicenza and the Palladian Villas of the Veneto".
- "Decision - 20COM VIII.C - Extension and Change of Name: The City of Vicenza and the Palladian Villas of the Veneto (Italy)".
- "Costiera Amalfitana".
- "Crespi d'Adda".
- "Early Christian Monuments of Ravenna".
- "Etruscan Necropolises of Cerveteri and Tarquinia".
- "Ferrara, City of the Renaissance, and its Po Delta".
- "Decision - 23COM VIII.C.2 - Extension: Ferrara, City of the Renaissance and its Po Delta (extension of Ferrara, city of the Renaissance) (Italy)".
- "Genoa: Le Strade Nuove and the system of the Palazzi dei Rolli".
- "Historic Centre of Florence".
- "Historic Centre of Naples".
- Extended in 1990 and name change from Historic Centre of Rome to the present name.
- "Historic Centre of Rome, the Properties of the Holy See in that City Enjoying Extraterritorial Rights and San Paolo Fuori le Mura".
- "Historic Centre of San Gimignano".
- "Historic Centre of Siena".
- "Historic Centre of the City of Pienza".
- "Historic Centre of Urbino".
- "Isole Eolie (Aeolian Islands)".
- "Late Baroque Towns of the Val di Noto (South-Eastern Sicily)".
- "Longobards in Italy. Places of the power (568-774 A.D.)".
- "Mantua and Sabbioneta".
- "Medici Villas and Gardens in Tuscany".
- Extended in 2010 to include the Italian portion of the site.
- "Monte San Giorgio".
- "Decision - 34COM 8B.6 - Natural Properties- Monte San Giorgio (Italy)".
- "Mount Etna".
- Minor modification to boundaries in 2007.
- "Piazza del Duomo, Pisa".
- "Decision - 31COM 8B.61 - Nomination of natural, mixed and cultural properties to the world heritage list - Piazza del Duomo, Pisa".
- "Portovenere, Cinque Terre, and the Islands (Palmaria, Tino and Tinetto)".
- "Prehistoric Pile dwellings around the Alps".
- "Residences of the Royal House of Savoy".
- "Decision - 34COM 8B.58 - Cultural Properties - Examination of minor boundary modifications - Residences of the Royal House of Savoy (Italy)".
- "Rhaetian Railway in the Albula / Bernina Landscapes".
- "Rock Drawings in Valcamonica".
- "Sacri Monti of Piedmont and Lombardy".
- "Su Nuraxi di Barumini".
- "Syracuse and the Rocky Necropolis of Pantalica".
- "The Dolomites".
- "The Sassi and the Park of the Rupestrian Churches of Matera".
- "The Trulli of Alberobello".
- "Val d'Orcia".
- "Venice and its Lagoon".
- "Villa Adriana (Tivoli)".
- "Villa d'Este, Tivoli".
- "Villa Romana del Casale".
- "Vineyard Landscape of Piedmont: Langhe-Roero and Monferrato".
- "Tentative Lists". UNESCO. Retrieved July 12, 2014.