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Main Cities

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La Spezia is a port city in Liguria, Italy. Its 1800s maritime arsenal and the Technical Naval Museum, with ship models and navigational instruments, attest to the city’s seafaring heritage. The hilltop St. George’s Castle houses an archaeological museum with artifacts from prehistory to the Middle Ages. The nearby Amedeo Lia Museum exhibits paintings, bronze sculptures and illuminated miniatures in a former convent.

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Pisa is a city with aristocratic airs and rich in charm that, thanks to the nearby sea, emanates a special light. Its most famous attraction is without doubt the Leaning Tower and yet, besides the wonders of Piazza dei Miracoli, the city contains incredible surprises. Pisa is so ancient it doesn’t really have a birthdate but it’s been tied to the sea ever since its first days. It was founded in one of the great bays along the Arno River

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Naples, a city in southern Italy, sits on the Bay of Naples. Nearby is Mount Vesuvius, the still-active volcano that destroyed nearby Roman town Pompeii. Dating to the 2nd millennium B.C., Naples has centuries of important art and architecture. The city’s cathedral, the Duomo di San Gennaro, is filled with frescoes. Other major landmarks include the lavish Royal Palace.

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Florence , capital of Italy’s Tuscany region, is home to many masterpieces of Renaissance art and architecture. One of its most iconic sights is the Duomo, a cathedral with a terracotta-tiled dome engineered by Brunelleschi and a bell tower by Giotto. The Galleria dell’Accademia displays Michelangelo’s “David” sculpture. The Uffizi Gallery exhibits Botticelli’s “The Birth of Venus” and da Vinci’s “Annunciation.”

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Rome, Italy’s capital, is a sprawling, cosmopolitan city with nearly 3,000 years of globally influential art, architecture and culture on display. Ancient ruins such as the Forum and the Colosseum evoke the power of the former Roman Empire. Vatican City, headquarters of the Roman Catholic Church, has St. Peter’s Basilica and the Vatican Museums, which house masterpieces such as Michelangelo’s Sistine Chapel frescoes .

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Sicily, the largest Mediterranean island, is just off the “toe” of Italy’s “boot.” Its rich history is reflected in sites like the Valley of the Temples, the well-preserved ruins of 7 monumental, Doric-style Greek temples, and in the Byzantine mosaics at the Cappella Palatina, a former royal chapel in capital city Palermo. On Sicily’s eastern edge is Mount Etna, one of Europe’s highest active volcanoes.