Italian borghi are lovely little towns perched on majestic mountains or overlooking beautiful bays. They are characterised by a harmonious architecture, in line with the surrounding environment, and offer a lot in terms of history, art and cuisine. Dating back to the Middle Ages, some of these towns still preserve their ancient defensive walls. Lucca, with its four kilometres of defensive walls, is the most famous example.
Umbria has the highest number of borghi. The most famous are Bevagna, not far from from Perugia, Spello on the slopes of Mount Subasio and Norcia on Monti Sibillini.
From north to south, there are many little towns included in the prestigious list of “The most beautiful Italian borghi”, and here you will discover their old traditions, history and cuisine.
In Valle d’Aosta, near Castello di Fenis, one of the best preserved castles in Italy, you can taste some delicious local specialties, such as “Fontina” cheese, courgette flowers and rye and wheat soup. In Usseaux, town in the province of Turin, locals speak patouà, an Occitan languages. In the province of Biella, Ricetto di Candelo, which takes its name from the place where cheese and wines were stored, is characterised by a magical atmosphere. Here shops sell a special pork salami called “paletta candelese” and Ciavarin crunchy sweets. Lovere, in the province of Bergamo, offers stunning views of Lake Iseo.
In Liguria, Cervo, with the majestic Clavesana castle dating back to the thirteenth century, has an old town which has been completely renovated while preserving its old urban fabric.
In Tuscany, Giglio Castello, on Giglio Island, in the province of Grosseto, is one of the most appreciated borghi in Italy. At the Rocca Aldobrandesca you will have the chance to admire the unique landscape of the Archipelago and the Maremma.
Subiaco, in the province of Rome, is famous for its Monastery of St. Scholastica, built by St. Benedict of Norcia where once there probably were the buildings of the nearby Nero’s Villa.
Fornelli, a short distance from Isernia, in Molise, is also known as the “oil town” and still preserves its ancient walls. Only its towers, indeed, seem to have suffered the passage of time. Among the typical dishes you should definitely try, there is lamb innards with peppers and potatoes.
Ischia is not only famous for its crystal clear waters, its incredible cuisine and its thermal water. The Aragonese Castle, indeed, attracts many tourists who want to take some nice pictures.
A Castellabate, in the province of Salerno, you can visit the lovely old town, included in the UNESCO World Heritage Site list, and admire the pristine waters of Santa Maria Marine Protected Area.
In Sicily there are many beautiful little towns, including Erice, the “stone town”, Savoca, the town with “seven faces”, and Gangi, proclaimed the “Borgo dei borghi 2014”. Do not miss Sambuca, in the province of Agrigento, with its Arab urban layout.