Tuesday, February 27

10 tourist traps you should avoid in Italy and where to go instead



San Gimignano Ask almost anyone and they’ll tell you that Italy is on their bucket list: the art, the culture, and the food is world famous for a reason.

But Italy is big, and it can be overwhelming for first timers, who inevitably, bowled over by choice, fall into overpriced tourist traps.

Here are the places you should avoid, and the often cheaper, always more authentic alternatives you should hit instead. 

1. Instead of getting disappointed by the Leaning Tower of Pisa, check out the medieval towers in the town of San Gimignano.

If we told you to go see a tilting old tower that wasn’t Pisa would you? Probably not, and you should avoid the surprisingly small and devastatingly disappointing Leaning Tower of Pisa too.

Want to see old towers? Visit San Gimignano, a mostly tourist-free haven in Tuscany that’s known for its medieval architecture and perfectly preserved ancient tower houses — in fact, it’s often referred to as “the city of beautiful towers” or even “medieval Manhattan.” And if that wasn’t enough, the city is also famous among locals for its Vernaccia di San Gimignano white wine.