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Trip List by viviandarkbloom

10 Most Overrated Things to Visit in Italy

Apr 11, 2006  italophile
2.0 of 5 stars based on 144 votes

Italy thrives on tourism, and rightly so. No matter what region of the country you go to, there is always something incredible to see. Unfortunately, sometimes you have to wait hours in a line to see it, or battle crowds for a good look at something that, in the long run, doesn't always seem worth it. Below are ten things (including one place) that you can safely skip on your next trip to the country--because it's just easier to pretend you've already seen it.

  • Explore locations featured in this Trip List: Rome, Pisa, Sorrento, Florence, Venice, Anacapri, Naples, Vatican City
  • Category: Worst of
  • Appeals to: Business travelers, Couples/romantics, Honeymooners, Singles, Families with small children, Families with teenagers, Large groups, Seniors, Students, Budget travelers, Active/adventure, Tourists, Pet owners
  • Seasons: Winter, Spring, Summer, Fall
  • 1. The Colosseum, Rome
    Colosseum, Rome, Lazio

    From afar, the Colosseum looks impressive. But once you manage to get past the excruciating long lines, pickpockets, and "gladiators" who try to pressure you into having your photo taken with them, it's not much more than a gutted out arena.

  • 2. Leaning Tower of Pisa
    Leaning Tower of Pisa, Pisa, Province of Pisa

    It's tall, and it leans, sort of like Lurch in The Addams Family. Take a picture of it and go have lunch in a less crowded area of Pisa.

  • 3. The Pantheon, Rome
    Pantheon, Rome, Lazio

    Again, like the Colosseum, best viewed from outside. There's not much to see inside the Pantheon except the tomb of Italy's great king, Victor Emmanuele II. At night it's a magnet for aspiring rock stars and Hare Krishnas.

  • 4. Sorrento
    Sorrento, Province of Naples

    It's official: Sorrento is now an extension of the United Kingdom. There are enough English-style pubs, football jersey stores, and mediocre restaurants to make you think you're in some sort of Anglicized Little Italy. Sorrento lacks the charm and attractions of other Amalfi Coast towns.

  • 5. Ponte Vecchio, Florence
    Ponte Vecchio, Florence

    Florence's famous bridge is a classic example of how we have spoiled that which we have loved: The Bridge is usually so crowded, even at night, that it is difficult at best to enjoy the views, the sights, and the sounds of Florence from this ideal vantage point.

  • 6. Bridge of Sighs, Venice
    Bridge of Sighs, Venice

    Claustrophobia-inducing, dark, and dank, this bridge was the connection from the Doge's Palace to its prisons. If you want to get a sense of what it's like to be a condemned prisoner heading toward execution, then this is your cup of tea!

  • 7. The Blue Grotto, Capri
    Blue Grotto, Anacapri, Island of Capri

    A boat trip to view Capri's legendary Blue Grotto is a gamble: You risk nausea, long waits, crowded boats, and being seriously overcharged. In the end, it's not worth the hassle.

  • 8. The Spanish Steps, Rome
    Spanish Steps, Rome, Lazio

    Not the place to try your Rocky impression. The excruciating climb to the top gives little to no payoff--you get much, much better views of Rome from the Capitoline or Palatine Hills.

  • 9. Mount Vesuvius, Naples
    Mount Vesuvius, Naples, Province of Naples

    Europe's only active volcano: Smoky and ominous, even from a distance. So why tempt fate?

  • 10. La Pieta, Vatican City
    La Pieta, Vatican City, Lazio

    It is a shame that one of Michelangelo's best known and most beautiful works must reside behind smeared, bulletproof glass--that additionally catches the glare of camera flashes--to keep it safe from the multitude of visitors who view it every year. But sadly, you will see more detail of the sculpture by viewing the Pieta in a very good coffee table book.