20 of Italy’s Architectural Marvels

16. The Ponte Vecchio, Florence

Originally used as both a thoroughfare and a shopping center, the Ponte Vecchio was first populated by butchers. After Cosimo de Medici I built the Vasari corridor on top of the bridge to connect the Palazzo Pitti with the Palazzo Vecchio, he forbid the butcher’s trade, and instead rented the shops to more palatable goldsmiths instead.

PatchW / Shutterstock

PatchW / Shutterstock

17. Palazzo Pitti, Florence

The Palazzo Pitti was originally built for Luca Pitti, a prominent banker, but was quickly bought by the powerful Medici family in 1549, and used as the headquarters of the ruling family of the Duchy of Tuscany for centuries. Now, it’s open to the public as a museum and botanical gardens.

vitormarigo / Shutterstock

vitormarigo / Shutterstock

18. St. Peter’s Basilica, Vatican City

Even though St. Peter’s Basilica isn’t technically located in Italy, Vatican City can (and should!) be a part of every visit to Italy. Vatican City, the Papal State, is located within the city limits of Rome, and is a must-see even for non-Catholic tourists. St. Peter’s is enormous, with every square inch covered in interesting art, sculptures, and tombs.

Markus Stappen / Shutterstock

Markus Stappen / Shutterstock

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