Italy is one of the art centers of the world. This is the home of the Renaissance and the world famous greats like Michelangelo, Leonardo da Vinci and Raphael. During your vacation in Italy you will find that art here has strong ties to religion. Several of the greatest painters also painted numerous religious subject matters and were often commissioned by the Church to paint murals.

If you are in the Tuscan city of Florence while on vacation in Italy, you may visit the Leonardo da Vinci Museum in the town called Vinci where he was born. The museum is in a medieval castle called the Conti Guidi Castle. The purpose of the museum is mainly to serve as a biographical memoir of the great artist and to describe his hometown and places of interest. There is also a great library here that holds almost everything that has ever been written about Leonardo da Vinci as a man, as an artist and about his pieces. You can get a guided tour of this museum if you happen to be in Tuscany for your Italy vacation.

If you are in Florence you must also go to the Uffizi Gallery. This place holds the greatest collection of paintings from the Italian renaissance period. Many of the painters from that time lived in Florence. This town has beautiful landscapes and rolling hills and it is no wonder that the great artists were so inspired by living in this region. An Italy vacation in this area will allow you to visit this museum and see famous works of art such as Michelangelo’s “Doni Tondo”  Leonardo da Vinci’s “The Annunciation” and Raphael’s “Maddonna of the Goldfinch.” An Italy vacation here will be a true feast for your artistic soul as you will not only get to see the masterpieces of the greats but you will also get to walk the streets that they walked on.

If you are in Milan for your Italy vacation, you may want to visit the church called Santa Maria delle Grazie. This is the church that houses the famous mural painting of Leonardo da Vinci’s called “The Last Supper.” His other famous painting “Mona Lisa” sits in the Louvre Museum in Paris. The Santa Maria delle Grazie church is protected by UNESCO as a world heritage site of outstanding cultural benefit to humanity. It also has some very unique and beautiful architecture designed by Guiniforte Solari in the 1400s. It is said that during World War II one of the bombs dropped by the British and American planes hit this important church but the famous mural was saved because the whole wall had been sand-bagged.

Although it does not feature art in the traditional sense of the word, the Archeological Museum of Naples is one of the greatest museums in the world of its kind and holds some of the most important findings from Pompeii and Herculaneum. You should strongly consider visiting this museum for a guided tour if you are in Naples for your Italy vacation.