Italy has a rich heritage steeped in culture. From the ‘Greats’ who achieved immortality through their works of art and inventions to the sculptors that transformed the mundane to the extraordinary – they all made Italy the melting pot of culture that it is today. With magnificent architecture gracing her streets, Italy has many museums to showcase her many treasures. Here are a few we would recommend visiting while in Italy.
- The Uffizi Gallery: Also known as the ‘Galleria degli Uffizi’, this museum based in Florence is one of the oldest in the world. Originally being a 16th century palace, many notable art pieces can be found here. Apart from housing many works of art from Renaissance artists like Michelangelo, Titian, Raphael and Caravaggio, it also includes works of Dutch, German and Flemish masters like Rembrandt. Housing so many wonderful works of art can take a lot of time, and if you are an art enthusiast, you may as well decide which section to cover or which particular paintings you want to view. It won’t be possible to cover the entire museum in one day.
- The Vatican Museums, Rome: Containing treasures collected by the Roman Catholic Church over centuries, it boasts of art ranging from classic sculpture to Renaissance art. The greatest pull for tourists is the view of the Sistine Chapel created by Michelangelo. As you can imagine, the wealth of the Roman Catholic Church is showcased in the works of art housed in the Vatican Museums. It can be quite a challenge to decide which areas to discover as the museums are too large to be viewed and appreciated in one day.
- The Borghese Gallery: Located in Rome, this Gallery was originally a 17th century villa and houses an extensive collection which once belonged to Cardinal Scipione Borghese. Being a Bernini fan, there are works of art from the famous artist as well a treasure trove of paintings from Caravaggio and Raphael. Egyptian, Greek and Roman musical instruments are included as well as a modern art museum, so there is something for every museum visitor. However, you need a reservation to enter this museum.
- Museo Egizio, Turin: When interest in ancient Egypt built up in the 18th century, the Egyptian Museum began housing its collection of Egyptian artifacts. Dedicated solely to Egyptian Antiquities, this is the only museum in the world second to the Museum of Egyptian Antiquities in Cairo to house so many articles exclusive to Egyptian culture. Over the centuries it has expanded its space to include treasures found in excavations during the years 1900-1935 when excavating in Egypt was at its peak. Housing Sphinxes, textiles, mummies that date back two thousand years, this is definitely a must-visit museum that should be added to your agenda.
- Museo Ferrari, Maranello: For all car enthusiasts, here is a museum that will steal your attention. If visiting museums and viewing paintings from centuries past if not up your alley, this could be the destination for you. Spread over 6 main halls, this exhibit is dedicated to Ferrari and includessome of the most beautiful designed Ferraris ever produced. Sergio Pininfarina’s work while collaborating with this Car Company is also showcased. You could also try out the simulators to feel the sensation of driving a Ferrari!
As you can see, there is something for everyone to appreciate in Italy, whether it is looking at the famed Sistine Chapel, or the Egyptian artifacts or the world renowned paintings from the masters. A cultural trip you will definitely leave Italy with more than you came in with.