Southern Italy off the beaten path

Southern Italy off the beaten path

Last Updated on March 7, 2023

There are few countries as desirable for holiday makers than Italy. Italy is appealing because of the beautiful climate, natural beauty, interesting towns and cities, culture and, of course, the food. As a consequence, some areas of Italy can be full of tourists, but you visit Southern Italy off the beaten path to find quieter areas and enjoy a more authentic experience. In particular, southern Italy is a great choice as there are some breathtaking places to discover off the tourist trail. Italy is also a country that is best seen slowly, so walking tours in Italy are a great way to soak everything up.

While there are plenty of popular tourist destinations in the region, there are also many hidden gems that are off the beaten path. Here are five must-visit destinations in Southern Italy that will take you off the tourist trail:

Tropea, Calabria


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Located on the picturesque west coast of southern Italy, Tropea is a charming old fortified town that is off the beaten path making it an ideal place for those looking to be by the sea but away from the crowds. It is incredibly beautiful and has a lot to offer visitors whether you are relaxing on the beach, hiking along the cliffs or sampling the cuisine in the old town.

The town’s main attraction is the dramatic cliff that overlooks the sea, providing a breathtaking view. The historic town is full of winding streets, old churches, and colorful buildings. To really take in the beauty of the town, take a stroll along the beach and enjoy the crystal-clear water.

Ostuni, Puglia

Ostuni is found in the heel of the boot in southern Italy and is an area that can be a lot quieter than many other Italian towns and cities (although it is becoming more popular). The city is known as the “White City” due to its distinctive whitewashed buildings that glisten in the sun. Ostuni’s historic center is a maze of winding streets and alleyways, and there are many hidden spots to discover, such as the ancient olive groves that surround the city.

Visit the Cathedral of Ostuni, a beautiful church that dominates the town’s skyline, and take a walk along the city’s walls for breathtaking views of the surrounding countryside.

Sant’Angelo, Isola d’Ischia, Campania


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The Bay of Naples will give you a slightly different experience of Italy and is known for its breathtaking scenery as well as tantalizing cuisine using fresh local produce. Isola d’Ischia is often said to be the most beautiful island in the Bay of Naples and somewhere that is lesser explored by tourists. The whole island is a hidden gem, but the village of Sant’Angelo on the southern coast is a must-visit for its secluded beaches, curative spas and authentic restaurants.

Visit the town’s thermal baths, which are fed by the island’s natural hot springs, or take a boat tour around the island for stunning views of the coastline, charming fishing boats and colorful houses.

Capri, Bay of Naples


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Another island worth visiting in the Bay of Naples is Capri. Capri is well-known for the mesmerizing Blue Grotto – a sea cave where the water turns a striking electric blue. In addition to this, Capri is known for its upmarket shopping and swanky hotels making it a great choice for a luxury stay.

While the island is a popular destination for tourists, there are still many hidden spots to discover. Take a stroll through the island’s gardens and parks, such as the Villa San Michele or the Giardini di Augusto, for stunning views of the sea. Visit the Blue Grotto, a natural cave that glows with a bright blue light, or take a hike to the island’s highest point, Monte Solaro, for breathtaking panoramic views.

Cefalu, Sicily


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Of course, you also have Sicily just off the toe of southern Italy and this is somewhere that has its own culture and way of life. Cefalu is a breathtaking sight to behold with its picturesque beach and azure waters with a 270-meter monumental rock as a backdrop with the Temple of Diana sitting on top. It also has plenty of shops, cafes, bars and restaurants as well as an impressive Gothic cathedral.

Take a stroll along the town’s beaches, such as the Spiaggia di Cefalù, for stunning views of the sea, or take a hike up the nearby La Rocca mountain for breathtaking panoramic views of the town and coastline.

In conclusion, Southern Italy is a region full of hidden gems that are waiting to be discovered. From the charming fishing village of Sant’Angelo to the stunning sea views of Tropea, there is something for everyone in this beautiful region. So, if you’re looking to escape the tourist crowds and experience the authentic beauty of Southern Italy, these destinations are a great place to start.

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About Maria Kennedy

Maria Kennedy is the managing editor at Travel for Food Hub. Maria is on a full-tilt mission to share local food and travel inspiration. When she is not writing about food and travel, startups or social media, she is enjoying her time with her boys in sunny Spain.

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