UNESCO World Heritage Sites in Italy

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Venezia e Laguna

The title of UNESCO World Heritage Site distinguishes the finest sites, areas, and places of cultural and natural interest. To date, Italy is the country with the highest number of sites included in the World Heritage list, boasting as many as 55 sites within its territory. But how is this title awarded?

A property, to be nominated, must possess outstanding universal value: it must therefore have historical, artistic, or scientific importance to be transmitted to future generations around the world.

Currently, of the 55 UNESCO sites in Italy (50 cultural heritages and 5 natural heritages), as many as 9 are in Veneto! Today, we take you to discover them.

UNESCO World Heritage Sites in Veneto

Venice and its Lagoon (1987)

Venice and its lagoon were recognised as a UNESCO World Heritage Site in 1987 for the uniqueness of the historical, artistic, and cultural traditions, integrated into an extraordinary landscape context.

Verona (2000)

Verona was added to the World Heritage List in 2000 for its historic centre rich in ancient monuments from the medieval and Renaissance periods. The city has developed progressively over the years, preserving and incorporating artistic and historical elements of the highest quality.

Vicenza and the Palladian Villas (1994)

Ville di Palladio

In 1994, Vicenza was recognised as a World Heritage Site for its uniqueness, particularly linked to the architectural work of Andrea Palladio. In 1996, a second recognition was awarded for the Palladian villas of Veneto: buildings of unmistakable elegance, balance, and harmony that have modified the urban layout of the city and the surrounding territory.

Venetian Defence Works (2017)

The Venetian defence works date back to the period of the Serenissima Republic. The UNESCO-awarded site consists of 6 components that extend over a territory of more than 1000 km across Italy, Croatia, and Montenegro. One of these 6 structures is located in Peschiera del Garda and is testimony to one of the most important works built for defensive purposes.

Prehistoric Pile Dwellings (2011)

The prehistoric pile dwellings are another UNESCO heritage consisting of multiple individual sites. These are the remains of prehistoric settlements on stilts, built between 5000 and 500 BC along lakes, rivers, or wetlands. Among the 111 identified sites, 3 are in Veneto: in Peschiera del Garda, between Belvedere and Frassino, in Tombola, near Cerea, and in Arquà Petrarca, at the foot of the Euganean Hills.

Botanical Garden of Padua (1997)

Orto botanico di Padova

Founded in 1545, the University Botanical Garden of Padua is the oldest in the world. The garden was declared a UNESCO World Heritage Site in 1997 for its important role in the study and research of botany: it houses about 6,000 specimens of great value, including the St. Peter’s palm, which is currently the oldest plant in Europe.

Padua’s Urbis Picta – Scrovegni Chapel (2021)

Also in Padua, UNESCO awarded World Heritage status in 2021 to 8 monuments in the city’s historic centre:

  • Scrovegni Chapel
  • Church of the Eremitani
  • Palazzo della Ragione
    Chapel of the Reggia Carrarese
  • Baptistry of the Cathedral
    Basilica and Convent of Saint Anthony
  • Oratory of San Giorgio
  • Oratory of San Michele.

Inside them are preserved precious frescoed painting cycles by Giotto, Guariento, Giusto de’ Menabuoi, Altichiero da Zevio, Jacopo Avanzi, and Jacopo da Verona.

Dolomites (2009)

Dolomiti

For their exceptional beauty recognised worldwide, the Dolomites were added to the list of UNESCO sites in 2009. The recognition awards the extraordinary landscape and naturalistic value of the mountain group. The Dolomitic peaks light up with shades of gold, pink, red, and purple at dawn and sunset, offering visitors a unique spectacle.

Prosecco Hills (2019)

We conclude with another natural landscape of unique beauty: the Prosecco hills of Conegliano and Valdobbiadene. In 2019, UNESCO decided to award this territory for its characteristic “hogback” morphological system that offers wonderful panoramas. The mosaic aspect of the landscape is the result of years of transformation and modelling that have made the soil cultivable and suitable for wine-making practices.

Veneto offers an infinity of uniquely beautiful places, all easily visitable even in a day. If you stay at Pra’ delle Torri, reaching them will be very simple thanks to its strategic location. Once you have visited all the UNESCO heritage sites, you can relax in the Holiday Centre and enjoy a holiday full of culture and relaxation!