Italy is preparing for a year of events and programs focused around the country’s art, history and culture. The Italian State Tourist Board has announced it is looking to encourage tourism by offering a year of exclusive cultural events.
The programme will offer visitors a chance to see things previously closed off to the public including three Roman archaeological sites. The Villa di Massenzio, Museo delle Mura and Scipio’s tomb will all be opened to the public in 2013, allowing visitors to experience historical rooms and shrines as well as some superb views of Rome.
Attention will also be given to existing cultural sites such as the Colosseum, the Statue of David and the Tower of Pisa. Art galleries around Italy will be exhibiting a selection of popular works throughout the year such as Picasso and Rubens at the Palazzo della Gran Guardia in Verona, and Titian at the Scuderie del Quirinale.
Naturally, a focus on Italy’s culinary offerings will also take place during 2013, with emphasis on the chocolate shops and cafes of Turin and celebration of Italy’s rich selection of wines and meats. In February Milan will host the Milano Food and Wine Festival and Florence will hold the Fiera Del Cioccolato 2013, an Artisan chocolate fair, featuring chocolate themed meals and chef demonstrations.
Italy currently has more cultural UNESCO World heritage sites than any other country in the world and boasts an impressive 95,000 churches, 40,000 forts and castles, 30,000 historical residences, 36,000 archives and libraries and 5,600 museums.