Travel and Dining
The Most Amazing Museums in Italy
A visitor looks at engravings by Spanish master Francisco de Goya on March 16 at Palazzo Reale museum in Milan. (Photo: Damien Meyer/ AFP-Getty Images)
Most tourists in Europe try to learn as much about the local residents and their history as possible. Visiting museums is a great way to do so, and Europe has lots of great museums to offer. The following is a breakdown of what Italy has to offer.
National Archaeological Museum (Naples)
Naples and the region around it have collected amazing treasures from the Roman Empire. The collection of the National Archaeological Museum includes works of the highest quality produced in Greek, Roman and Renaissance times. All of the works can be visited in an amazing building, which was used as a barracks for soldiers in the 16th century.
Most impressive work: mosaics recovered from the ruins of Pompeii.
Galleria Borghese (Rome)
The Borghese Gallery is an art museum located in Villa Borghese Pinciana, a palace-like building from 1613. The Galleria Borghese houses a substantial part of the Borgheses private collection of paintings, sculpture and antiquities, started by Cardinal Scipione Borghese. The Galleria Nazionale d'Arte Moderna and Museo Nazionale Etrusco are located within walking distance of Galleria Borghese.
Most impressive work: ceiling fresco by Mariano Rossi.
Uffizi Gallery (Florence)
This 16th-century Renaissance palace was the administrative headquarters, or uffizi (offices), for the Grand Duchy of Tuscany when the Medicis controlled Florence. It is estimated that up to 90 percent of Italy's artistic patrimony is stored in the Uffizi Gallery, which makes it the crown jewel of Italy's museums. The Uffizi Gallery, which is located in the province of Tuscany, houses the world's greatest collection of Renaissance paintings.
Most impressive work: Doni Madonna by Michelangelo.
National Gallery of Umbria (Perugia)
Italian Renaissance art has its roots in Tuscan and Umbrian paintings from the 13th century. This collection, located on the top floor of the Palazzo dei Priori (parts of which date from the 1400s), contains a world-class selection of paintings. The National Gallery of Umbria contains works by Fra Angelico, Perugino, Duccio and Gozzoli.
Most impressive work: The Adoration of the Magi by Fiorenzo di Lorenzo.
Peggy Guggenheim Collection (Venice)
A comprehensive, brilliant modern art collection, carefully selected by legendary arts patron Peggy Guggenheim, is housed in an unfinished (but stunning) palazzo. It is the most important museum in Italy for European and American art of the first half of the 20th century, and the collection of the Peggy Guggenheim Collection includes works of Pablo Picasso, Braque, Magritte and Giacometti.
Most impressive work: The Angel of the City by Marino Marini.
Museo Egizio (Turin)
In Turin, in the north of Italy, Museo Egizio houses the largest and most comprehensive collection of Egyptian antiquities outside of Egypt. The Egyptian Museum owns three different versions of the Egyptian Book of the Dead, including the most ancient copy known. With about 600,000 visitors per year, Museo Egizio is one of the most popular museums in Italy.
Most impressive works: statue collection of Egyption pharaos.
Cittadella dei Musei (Cagliari)
The Cittadella dei Musei is a group of museums located next to each other in the Sardinian capital Cagliari. It houses National Archaeological Museum, the Art Gallery, the Wax Museum and the Museum of Siamese art, and is located in one of the historic districts of the city.
Most impressive works: bronze figure collection from the Nuraghic period.
Paolo Rossi works for Charming Sardinia Luxury Hotels, a travel agency located in the Sardinian capital Cagliari, where he shares his love for the island with tourists every day. His company also runs Charming Italy, a blog about attractive aspects of Italy.