If you’re an Italophile, you’ve probably seen all the greats already: the ancient alleys of Rome, the Renaissance epicenter of Florence, the fashion and frenzy of Milan, and the gorgeous canals of Venice.

Been there, done that. What else is out there? After all, Italy is a big, diverse country. And if you’re thinking that there must be more to it than just these major tourist cities, you’re right!

If you’re looking to stray away from the beaten tourist paths during your next Italian adventure, we’ve got you covered. Check out these incredible– and not so tourist-choked– places to visit in Italy!

1. Aosta

What do you get when you mix French and Italian culture, mountain life, and Roman ruins? Aosta, of course!

Seated at the foot of the Alps, Aosta is just a 30-minute drive from Mont Blanc and the French border. And it’s not just its amazing skiing that gives it a claim to fame: Aosta is also filled to the brim with amazing, well-preserved Roman ruins.

So, if you’re looking for an Italian ski trip with Roman ruins that put even Rome to shame, Aosta should be on your list.

2. Siena

Ok, ok. So Siena is actually very touristy. Like, really touristy.

But, from what I’ve seen over and over again, a lot of visitors to Tuscany skip this gorgeous city in favor of spending more time in Florence or Pisa.
Don’t do that. Siena is wayyy cooler than Pisa.

3. Salento

If you’re dreaming of an exciting summer road trip down a beautiful, sandy coast, Salento is the place for you.

Rent a car and drive around the entire region of Salento. This is the best way to go about it.

The beaches are stunning, but it’s not just about the beaches here: the region is known for their sagre, open-air events organized by the region in which plates upon plates of delicious local food is served up all summer long.

So, grab a few friends, hit the road, soak up the sun on the Pugliese beaches in Salento, eat some typical foods, and dance la pizzica— the traditional and popular dance of the region– all summer long!

4. Lago Maggiore

Everyone’s heard of Lake Como. Full of posh superstars and George Cloony and all that. But if you’re not into that sort of tourist situation, then head over to Como’s neighbor, the equally beautiful Lago Maggiore.

Italians living in the area often frequent both lakes, but Maggiore is certainly much more authentic than its touristy and celebrity-populated neighbor. It’s down-to-earth!

5. Castiglione della Pescai and La Maremma

Seeing as how Siena really isn’t a true “off-the-beaten-path” destination, allow me to suggest a place that is: Castiglione della Pescaia and La Maremma.

This small, medieval town sits on the coast in Tuscany, nearby the town of Grosseto. Seeing as how my mother-in-law comes from this area, my family and I end up spending a lot of time down here each summer. And it is beautiful!

Apart from the gorgeous medieval town center and excellent food, the neighboring towns– specifically Marina di Grosseto and Principina a Mare– have incredible, completely untouched camping grounds right on the beach.

Head just a little further south from these towns, and you’ll find a true gem in Tuscany: La Maremma. La Maremma is a protected regional park that sprawls down the Tuscan coast. And it is absolutely gorgeous!

So, pitch a tent next to the beach, rent a bike, pack a picnic, and you’re all set to explore the Tuscan seaside.
Even better? The vast majority of tourists that you’ll meet around here are Italians. It doesn’t get any more genuine than that.

6. Assisi

If you’re a lover of all things medieval, you cannot miss Assisi.

Assisi, which is located in the province of Umbria, has its claim to fame for being the birthplace of Saint Francis of Assisi. And the powerful history that permeates the streets of Assisi most certainly does justice to this legacy.
Simply put: Assisi is gorgeous. Go there. You won’t be disappointed.

7. Le Isole Tremiti

Looking for some more island fun off the tourist drag? Le Isole Tremiti is another must-visit.

Part of the region of Puglia, Le Isole Tremiti are 5 small islands out in the Adriatic Sea. And they are gorgeous. GORGEOUS.

Forget Santorini. Forget the Caribbean. Forget all the beautiful islands you thought were the best. A more gorgeous chain of islands doesn’t exist. Le Isole Tremiti are simply spectacular.

You won’t be disappointed.

And these are all just to start! Italy is full of incredible places with incredible people. So, do yourself a favor: get out of Rome or Milan, and start exploring!

Do you have something to add? What are your favorite parts of Italy to explore? Let us know!

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… and here is Milan vs Rome – la grande battaglia for those who can’t decide which city is best for them.