The beautiful landscape of Italy

avatar by Tripspi / January 20, 2021 / 14 min read

Geographically, you can find everything your heart desires in Italy, from mountain landscapes to valleys to dreamlike coasts or volcanoes. Surrounded by the Tyrrhenian Sea, Ionian Sea and the Adriatic coast, the Italian peninsula is located in the center of the Mediterranean Sea.

The Italian mainland can be considered as a peninsula since almost all 20 regions are surrounded by the Mediterranean Sea. In most places, the mountains flatten out toward the sea, merging into rolling hills and long, fine beaches. And especially in the very north and south of Italy, the mountains reach the coast, forming rugged cliffs with beautiful, hidden bays. The Italian landscape also impresses with its extraordinarily varied vegetation. Each of the regions in Italy has its own unique flora. Tuscany, for example, is known for its long rows of cypresses, while the "Riviera of Flowers" in Liguria owes its name to the cultivation of cut flowers. In this article we would like to present you the most beautiful nature highlights in Italy and show you why you should definitely go there on your next vacation! Here we show you how to plan your trip with Tripspi. 

What to see in Italy?

The landscape of Italy is distinct: majestic mountains, golden beaches, Mediterranean cuisine, world famous art treasures and historic cities. There are so many natural landscapes to discover that you will certainly have to travel to Italy several times to discover them all. Let yourself be enchanted by the beauty of the landscape and the joie de vivre of the Italians.

Beaches in Italy

For those who enjoy a beach vacation, Italy is the place to be, as its coasts attract visitors with some of the most beautiful beaches in Europe. More than 7500 km of coastline span the Italian peninsula with its characteristic boot shape as well as the offshore islands, first and foremost Sardinia and Sicily. Crystal clear, azure waters, fine sandy beaches and pleasant swells - that's what Italy's beaches are like. While the Adriatic coast between Trieste and Rimini is lined with miles of wide sandy beaches lined up with sunbeds and umbrellas, vacationers in other regions will also find many hidden bays that not everyone knows about.

Mountains in Italy

In the diversity of its landscape, Italy offers a particularly impressive mountain world, an ideal vacation destination both in winter and summer.

From north to south, the mountain landscape offers its visitors enchanting landscapes with alpine lakes, fairy-tale forests and historic castles, rich in traditions and history as well as traditional gastronomy.

When one thinks of the Italian mountains, the Dolomites are usually the first to come to mind. The mountain group that belongs to the Southern Limestone Alps and is a thorn in the side of sports climbers and boulderers in particular due to its pointed rock needles. The Alps and the Apennines are the two mountain ranges that dominate the Italian territory.

The highest peak, which is entirely in Italy, is Picco Luigi Amedeo (4,469 meters). Other well-known mountains below 4,000 meters in Italy include the Ortles and the Three Peaks in the Dolomites.

Vulcanos in Italy

Italy, the beautiful cultural country on the Mediterranean, is the land of volcanoes!

The Lipari (Aeolian) Islands with their still active volcanoes Stromboli and Vulcano, Mount Etna in Sicily, Mount Vesuvius and the Phlegraean Fields in the Gulf of Naples, but also extinct volcanoes like the Alban Hills near Rome, volcanic areas in Tuscany and Sardinia, as well as other smaller volcanic areas in the Mediterranean region make the landscape of Italy unique.

Vesuvius is probably the most dangerous and unpredictable volcano.  It is located in the immediate vicinity of the densely populated province of Naples. The greatest activity takes place on the Phlegraean Fields, Etna, Stromboli and Vulcano.

Lakes in Italy

There are more than 200 lakes in Italy that will surprise you not only with their beauty but also with a variety of activities. Lake Como, Lake Garda, Lake Maggiore - Italy's lakes are world famous and attract numerous nature lovers all year round. Here a bathing and active vacation is equally possible, because the lakes are usually very idyllic with breathtaking mountain panoramas.

From small and almost circular to large Italian inland seas, everything is available. They are also sometimes quiet and sometimes sophisticated and particularly lively. Each visitor has the choice to find one of the most beautiful lakes in Italy that suits his desires.

Italian Islands

The Italian landscape is also characterized by many beautiful islands. The most famous islands are probably Sicily, Sardinia and Capri, which are definitely worth a trip despite their fame. But also numerous other islands can score with dream beaches and beautiful natural landscapes. Whether immaculate sandy beaches or rocky cliffs that sink into the Mediterranean Sea - there is something for everyone here. In total, there are 800 different islands in Italy!

5 popular nature places in Italy

In the following, we propose to you the most beautiful natural places in Italy landscape, which you should not miss throughout your Italy tour.

Lake Como

With its 146 km² surface, Lake Como is the third largest lake in Italy. It is surrounded by the peaks of the Alps, which include the highest mountain Monte Legnone on the northwestern shore of the lake with its 2615 meters. At over 400 meters deep, the lake  is one of the deepest lakes in Europe. The bottom of the lake is more than 200 meters below sea level! Quite incredible.

Successive charming villas mark the shore of the lake, which was already a favorite vacation spot of the Lombard nobility in the 16th century. But even in our days, Lake Como, one of the most important lakes in Lombardy, attracts personalities of the international jet set, who particularly appreciate the beauty of the landscape and the picturesque towns around the lake.

On warm days, it is a good idea to take advantage of Lake Como and swing a round of sails on the deep blue water. The northern part of the lake is particularly popular with kitesurfers, and some come here to try their hand at water skiing or paragliding. If you want to get to know the different parts of the shore better and admire some beautiful places from the water, then a small tour by canoe or pedal boat is recommended. But also hiking or cycling tours are a popular activity on Lake Como.

Lake Garda

Located in the north, about halfway between Venice and Milan, Lake Garda has long been appreciated and enjoyed by locals and tourists alike. Just a few kilometers from the city of Verona, Lake Garda is the largest lake in Italy. Glaciers formed the Alpine region at the last ice age. Lake Garda is a significant tourist destination with several exclusive hotels and Resorts along. The lake and its show line are divided between the provinces of Verona, Brescia, and Trentino.

Mount Etna

Etna is the largest and most powerful volcano in Europe and is located on the east coast of the Italian island of Sicily. With a height of 3352 meters, it is a landmark for Italy's landscape.  It is by far the largest of Italy's three active volcanoes and about two and a half times as high as the next largest volcano, Vesuvius. However, due to constant eruptions, it often changes its appearance and has sometimes been as low as 3,200 meters, but sometimes as high as 3,350 meters. 

Etna has a total of four summit craters. During an eruption, however, the lava is usually ejected through the flanks of the mountain's cone, which has since led to the formation of some 400 secondary craters, for example the Monti Silvestri at an altitude of around 2,000 meters.

Those who want to climb the famous volcano should bring good physical condition and suitable equipment, i.e. hiking boots, warm clothes, sunglasses and food. When it is still 30° degrees on the coast, the temperature can drop to 0° degrees in the upper area. For nature lovers, however, a hike up Etna is an absolute must! On paths surrounded by crater cones and solidified lava flows, a bizarre moon-like landscape awaits you.  

Capri Island

Just 30 kilometers south of the Campania capital and only five kilometers from the Italian mainland is the rocky island of Capri, which has become particularly famous for its caves by the sea - especially the Blue Grotto. However, in addition to the Blue Grotto, a number of other grottoes are also worth seeing, such as the Grotta Matermania. Particularly impressive is also the Via Krupp, a serpentine path that winds up the steep slope of Monte Castiglione in narrow hairpin bends and is one of the most popular tourist attractions. Equally popular is the Arco Naturale, a natural stone arch on Capri's east coast that juts impressively out of the landscape.

Whether it is water sports in the form of swimming, snorkeling, diving, sailing, surfing, boating, fishing or whether you prefer hiking, exploring the island and simply relaxing, all this is possible during a vacation on Capri.

What is also special about the island of Capri is the evergreen vegetation with beautiful citrus trees, grapevines, olive trees and the blooming magnificent gardens that adorn the island. If you don't have enough time to spend several days on the island, you can also take only one day trip.

Beach of Otranto

The easternmost city in Italy, Otranto is located on the heel of the Italian boot near Lecce in the province of Puglia and connects the Adriatic Sea with the Ionian Sea. With its white sand and turquoise waters, the bay looks like something out of a storybook. The historic town provides beachgoers with exquisite wine, delicious pasta and regional cheese specialties. For suitable accommodation, hotels and apartments of all price ranges are available nearby. The steep cliffs provide an impressive backdrop while you swim or sunbathe.

Regions in Italy with the most beautiful landscapes


Tuscany is one of the most popular vacation regions in Italy. This is mainly due to the beautiful landscape that the region has to offer and the family atmosphere that you will find everywhere. There is no trace of large hotel complexes here. Rather, you can spend a Tuscan vacation in small family hotels and vacation homes in the midst of the Italian countryside. The best known is probably the Chianti area in Tuscany.

Here, mainly vines and olive trees characterize the landscape, which is ideal for hiking and biking. The landscape is especially famous for its wines, which thrive particularly well in Italy because of the mild climate.

Chianti is one of the largest wine-growing areas in Europe. But the Maremma is also incredibly diverse with its hills, forests and beaches. The coast attracts mainly sailors, wind and kite surfers, as well as bathers. For hikers and bikers, the hilly landscape of Garfagnana with its picturesque villages, valleys and forests is particularly suitable.The largest part of Garfagnana is a nature reserve and with its many different peaks an absolute paradise for climbers.


The upper Italian landscape of Lombardy is incredibly diverse, which is why a vacation here is worthwhile at any time of year. Whether skiing in the Alps, swimming at the beautiful lakes or hiking in the national parks, the Italian landscape of Lombardy shows its best side.

A highlight is the largest national park in Italy, which is partly located in Lombardy: Stelvio with a total size of 234,620 ha. In addition to many hiking and biking trails, you will also find one of the most impressive and highest pass roads with unique views of the mountains. You can drive the pass by bike, motorcycle or car, but you should definitely be free from vertigo.

The lakes of Como, Iseo and Idro also form a fantastic backdrop that attracts numerous visitors every year for swimming vacations. Iseo is also home to the largest inhabited island in a southern European lake, Monte Isola, which you can reach daily by ferry from the mainland.


Puglia, the heel of the boot and with 810 kilometers of coastline the longest region in Italy, is largely characterized by wide sinkholes. You can find them everywhere in nature, but mainly in Altamura. But you can also find dreamlike coastal landscapes in the region at the sea.

Whether sandy beaches in Torre dell'Orso or the imposing rocky coast of Otranto, here the Ionian Sea meets the Adriatic Sea, creating an incomparable Italian landscape. For absolute relaxation, the five islands that belong to the Tremiti archipelago. Here history and nature are in harmony and definitely worth a visit.

In the interior of Puglia lies the Gargano National Park with dense forests and maquis. Also very popular with tourists is the Itria Valley with its numerous olive trees. The Murge plateau, on the other hand, is full of variety, offering castles and cathedrals as well as a unique Italian landscape.


In the south of Italy, the clocks turn a little slower than in the north. This is also the case in Calabria, where everything is a bit more leisurely and relaxed.

Nature here is also largely untouched with dense forests and interrupted only by impressive waterfalls and deep blue lakes.The flora and fauna of the most famous national parks Aspromonte, Sila and Serre are considered unique natural wonders. For example, you can observe wildlife in Serre, discover monuments in Sila and enjoy the unique rocky landscape of Aspromonte. The Lao River in the Sila offers a bit more action.

You can conquer it on a rafting tour through some gorges. If this is too much action for you, you can also get to know the river and its surroundings by canyoning with a trained guide. The beaches along the Tyrrhenian and Ionian coasts are a paradise for sun worshippers and water sports enthusiasts. Especially Capo Vaticano is very popular in Calabria.The cape is located on a rocky promontory from which you can see as far as the Strait of Messina and the Aeolian Islands.

Why travel to Italy?

As you have now seen, Italy offers everything a nature lover's heart desires! In Italy you can hike, lie on the beach and relax, go on bike tours or do water sports and much more! While traveling through the country make sure to protect the environment and the beautiful landscape of Italy. Our 5 tips to travel more sustainably will show you how to do that!  

But not only the fantastic scenery and breathtaking nature is worth a trip to Italy, there is so much more to discover! Beautiful cities like Rome, Florence, Venice or Naples, world famous sights like the Colosseum, the Leaning Tower of Pisa or the Trevi Fountain and of course with pizza, pasta, vino and gelato the best cuisine in the world!

Don't know what to pack for your trip? Here we give you some advice on which shoes to pack for hot and cold regions. 


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