What to See in L'Aquila: A Traveler's Guide to Discovering the City and Surrounding Areas

What to See in L'Aquila: A Traveler's Guide to Discovering the City and Surrounding Areas

What to See in L'Aquila: A Traveler's Guide

L'Aquila Overview

L'Aquila is a beautiful city located in the central region of Abruzzo, Italy. Known for its rich history, stunning architectural heritage, and picturesque landscapes, L'Aquila offers a unique blend of culture and natural beauty. Founded by the Romans in the 13th century, the city has a long and fascinating history that can be seen through its numerous historic landmarks and attractions.

Must-See Attractions in L'Aquila

L'Aquila is home to several remarkable attractions that shouldn't be missed during your visit. Here are some must-see landmarks and points of interest:

Basilica di Santa Maria di Collemaggio

The Basilica di Santa Maria di Collemaggio is a magnificent example of medieval architecture. This iconic church was built in the 13th century and is famous for its striking façade adorned with intricate rose windows and decorative details. Inside, you'll find beautiful frescoes and the tomb of Pope Celestine V. Don't forget to admire the stunning views of the city from the bell tower.

Fortress of L'Aquila

The Fortress of L'Aquila, also known as Castello, offers a glimpse into the city's defensive past. Built in the 16th century, this imposing structure was designed to protect the city from invasions. Explore the fortress's ramparts, towers, and moat, and learn about its fascinating history through the onsite museum. The panoramic views from the top of the castello are absolutely breathtaking.

Fontana delle 99 Cannelle

The Fontana delle 99 Cannelle, or Fountain of the 99 Spouts, is a unique and mysterious monument in L'Aquila. Dating back to the 13th century, this fountain features 99 intricately carved stone spouts. The symbolism behind the number 99 remains a mystery, adding to the allure of this historical site. Take a leisurely stroll around the fountain, appreciating its architectural beauty and the soothing sound of flowing water.

Saint Bernardino's Church

The Church of Saint Bernardino is a magnificent Renaissance church known for its grandeur and artistic treasures. Built in the late 15th century, it stands as a testament to the period's architectural brilliance. Step inside to marvel at the exquisite frescoes, sculptures, and altarpieces gracing the church's elegant interior. Absorb the spiritual ambiance and admire the craftsmanship of the skilled artists who contributed to its creation.

Exploring the Surrounding Areas

L'Aquila is surrounded by breathtaking landscapes and charming towns worth exploring. Rent a car or join a guided tour to discover the beauty of the Abruzzo region.

Gran Sasso National Park

Just a short drive from L'Aquila, Gran Sasso National Park is a paradise for nature lovers. This vast protected area boasts stunning mountain ranges, pristine forests, and picturesque alpine meadows. Embark on hiking trails, visit quaint villages, and enjoy outdoor activities such as skiing, mountaineering, and wildlife spotting. The park offers unforgettable panoramas and a chance to immerse yourself in the region's natural wonders.

Santo Stefano di Sessanio

The medieval village of Santo Stefano di Sessanio is a hidden gem located in the Gran Sasso e Monti della Laga National Park. Its well-preserved stone houses and narrow winding streets transport visitors back in time. Roam the village's charming alleys, visit the 16th-century fortress, and take in the stunning views of the surrounding mountainous landscapes. Enjoy the tranquility of this enchanting village and experience the authentic rural life of Italy.


Nestled in the heart of Abruzzo, the picturesque town of Scanno is known for its traditional architecture and scenic beauty. Visit the historic center to admire its narrow streets and stone houses adorned with colorful flowers. The stunning Lake Scanno nearby offers opportunities for boating, swimming, and capturing incredible photographs of the surrounding landscape. Don't forget to try the local specialty, arrosticini (grilled lamb skewers), at one of the charming restaurants.

Enjoy Your Adventure in L'Aquila

L'Aquila and its surrounding areas offer a wealth of attractions and experiences for travelers seeking history, culture, and natural beauty. Immerse yourself in the rich heritage of the city, explore its landmarks, and venture into the stunning landscapes of the Abruzzo region. Whether you're a history enthusiast, an outdoor adventurer, or simply seeking a peaceful escape, L'Aquila has something to offer everyone.