Do you want to know which muse­ums in Italy are the most pop­u­lar and vis­it­ed? While some are inter­na­tion­al­ly renowned and attract mil­lions of vis­i­tors each year, oth­er muse­ums are less pop­u­lar and can be great alter­na­tives for those wish­ing to wan­der among the art in a more relaxed set­ting. Below is a list of the 15 most pop­u­lar muse­ums in Italy worth vis­it­ing.

popular museums in Italy

Entry relat­ed to place: Italy

Egyptian Museum of Turin

The recent­ly ren­o­vat­ed Egypt­ian Muse­um of Turin, with its large col­lec­tion of Egypt­ian arti­facts, is not only one of the largest muse­ums in Italy, but also one of the largest repos­i­to­ries of Egypt­ian antiq­ui­ties in the world, with over 30,000 items.

Egyptian Museum Turin

Royal Palace of Venaria

List­ed as a UNESCO World Her­itage Site, the Venar­ia Reale baroque palace is locat­ed near Turin and is the for­mer roy­al res­i­dence of the House of Savoy. Built in the 17th and 18th cen­turies, it was com­mis­sioned by Duke Charles Emmanuel II who need­ed a base for his hunt­ing expe­di­tions in the coun­try­side north of Turin. In fact, the name of the palace comes from the Latin Vena­tio Regia, which means “roy­al hunt”.

museums in Italy

Cenacolo Vinciano, Milan

Inside the con­vent of San­ta Maria delle Gra­zie in Milan is one of the most famous paint­ings in the world: Ulti­ma Sina, The Last Sup­per, cre­at­ed in the 15th cen­tu­ry by the Renais­sance genius Leonar­do da Vin­ci. You must book your tick­et in advance. Please be aware that tick­et avail­abil­i­ty can change quick­ly.

cenacolo vinciano

Gallery Palatina, Florence

The Pala­tine Gallery is the main gallery of the Pit­ti Palace and con­sists of 28 sump­tu­ous rooms con­tain­ing over 500 paint­ings, most­ly from the Renais­sance peri­od. This muse­um is part of a pri­vate col­lec­tion of art from the Medici dynasty. Palaz­zo Pit­ti is the largest muse­um com­plex in Flo­rence. It is very pop­u­lar with vis­i­tors, so you should buy a tick­et in advance.

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gallery palatine

Museums in the Boboli Gardens, Florence

This muse­um com­plex inside the Pit­ti Palace includes the Sil­ver Gallery, the Cos­tume Gallery, one of the most impor­tant fash­ion muse­ums in Italy, the Porce­lain Gallery and the famous 16th-cen­tu­ry Ital­ian-style Boboli Gar­dens. Please note that tick­ets to the Pala­tine Gallery do not include entry to the Boboli Gar­dens.

museums in boboli gardens

Uffizi Gallery, Florence

The Uffizi Gallery is one of the most pop­u­lar muse­ums in Italy, home to a huge col­lec­tion of art, many of which date back to the Renais­sance. Here are world-famous mas­ter­pieces such as the “Birth of Venus” by Bot­ti­cel­li and Pri­mav­era. It is bet­ter for you to book a tour in advance, or not to spend extra hours in line at the box office.

uffizi gallery

Accademia Gallery, Florence

The Accad­e­mia Gallery hous­es the famous David, as well as oth­er sculp­tures by Michelan­ge­lo and a col­lec­tion of Flo­ren­tine paint­ings from the 15th and 16th cen­turies. Since David attracts a large num­ber of vis­i­tors, it is always crowd­ed here.

academy gallery

Galleria Borghese, Rome

The Gal­le­ria Borgh­ese in the Vil­la Borgh­ese of the same name hous­es one of the great­est col­lec­tions of art in Rome. Here you can see paint­ings and sculp­tures by major Ital­ian artists such as Car­avag­gio, Raphael, Tit­ian, Berni­ni and Cano­va. It is bet­ter to take care of tick­ets in advance, as the muse­um is in very high demand. It also makes sense to con­sid­er book­ing a guid­ed tour, as the muse­um’s col­lec­tion is very exten­sive and you can eas­i­ly get con­fused while explor­ing on your own. Read about the best muse­ums in Rome in a sep­a­rate selec­tion on LifeGlobe.net.

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Villa d’Este, Rome (Tivoli)

Locat­ed in Tivoli near Rome, Vil­la d’Este is a UNESCO World Her­itage Site. It was built in the 16th cen­tu­ry and attracts vis­i­tors with its hill­side ter­raced Ital­ian Renais­sance gar­den with an abun­dance of elab­o­rate foun­tains. It is con­sid­ered one of the most remark­able and refined exam­ples of Renais­sance cul­ture. For this rea­son, UNESCO has includ­ed the muse­um in its World Her­itage List.

Museums in Italy

Colosseum, Rome

The largest amphithe­ater ever built, this open-air muse­um was cre­at­ed in 80 AD. The Colos­se­um is Rome’s most vis­it­ed attrac­tion, attract­ing an aver­age of four mil­lion vis­i­tors a year. The Colos­se­um was a favorite gath­er­ing place of the ancient Romans and was used for enter­tain­ment, and bloody glad­i­a­tor fights were espe­cial­ly pop­u­lar. Join a tour of the dun­geons and upper lev­els of the Colos­se­um to hear excit­ing sto­ries about the glad­i­a­tors.

Castel Sant’Angelo, Rome

Cas­tel San­t’An­ge­lo faced the Tiber Riv­er near St. Peter’s Basil­i­ca. It was built by the Roman emper­or Hadri­an as a mau­soleum for him­self and his fam­i­ly. Lat­er it was used by the popes as a fortress and cas­tle, and even as a prison. Philoso­pher Gior­dano Bruno and sculp­tor Ben­venu­to Celli­ni were among his most famous pris­on­ers.

sant angelo in rome

National Museum, Rome

One of the over­looked Roman muse­ums, the Roman Nation­al Muse­um is Palaz­zo Mas­si­mo alle Terme. It hous­es a stun­ning col­lec­tion of clas­si­cal art, which includes mag­nif­i­cent sculp­tures on the first floor and bright­ly col­ored mosaics on the sec­ond. Three oth­er muse­ums make up the Museo Nazionale com­plex in Rome: the Baths of Dio­clet­ian, the Palaz­zo Altemps and the Crypt of Bal­bi. Read about oth­er sights of Rome in a spe­cial selec­tion.

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National Archaeological Museum, Naples

The most impor­tant archae­o­log­i­cal muse­um in Italy, the Nation­al Archae­o­log­i­cal Muse­um of Naples hous­es an impor­tant col­lec­tion of Roman arte­facts from Pom­peii, Stabi­ae and Her­cu­la­neum. It also hous­es Greek and Roman antiq­ui­ties, includ­ing mar­bles, mosaics and bronzes, as well as a large Egypt­ian col­lec­tion.

Museum of Naples

Pompeii, Naples

The archae­o­log­i­cal exca­va­tions of Pom­peii near Naples are one of the main attrac­tions of Italy. The ancient Roman city, buried by the erup­tion of Vesu­vius in AD 79, was redis­cov­ered in 1748 and has con­tin­ued to delight vis­i­tors ever since. The lack of air and mois­ture made it pos­si­ble to save build­ings, objects and even peo­ple. Con­sid­er book­ing a guid­ed tour for a fas­ci­nat­ing insight into the his­to­ry and mys­ter­ies of this unique open-air muse­um.

The Most Spec­tac­u­lar Pom­peii Ruins at Life­Globe

Pompeii in Naples

Reggia di Caserta, Caserta

The Roy­al Palace of Caser­ta is a UNESCO World Her­itage Site and is a for­mer roy­al res­i­dence built for the Bour­bon king of Naples to com­pete with Ver­sailles. It was one of the largest build­ings built in Europe in the 18th cen­tu­ry. It includes an opu­lent palace with a park, gar­dens and wood­land, as well as the Car­oli­no aque­duct and the indus­tri­al com­plex of San Leu­cio, built for silk pro­duc­tion. Con­sid­er­ing how big this muse­um is, a guid­ed tour might be your best option.

Reggia di Caserta