Le Marche Italy is known for its stunning landscapes, history, artistic heritage, and coast. It’s also famous for its authenticity, as this Italian region is relatively unknown in some countries. This territory is a place of Verdicchio wines, paper, accordion, underground cities, and walled villages that overlook breathtaking rolling hills. Probably, you will find many worldwide renowned things that you didn’t know were from this Italian Region. If you were to ask “what is Marche Italy famous for?”, the answer would be a long list of things. Let’s check out some of them!
Authenticity: The opportunity to see how people in Italy really are.
Marche Italy is a hidden gem. At most, you will see tourists from other parts of Europe like the Netherlands, the UK, and Germany. You will rarely meet people speaking in English and you will rarely find touristic menus or souvenirs shops. This should be considered a positive aspect and an opportunity to see how people really are.
Unique identity in a strategic position, in the middle of Italy
Le Marche has a unique and fascinating identity, so you’ll not find something similar. Besides, it’s located in a strategic position, in the middle of Italy. This is a great advantage for travelers with long-haul flights, planning a long touring in the country. You can get pretty far north or pretty far south too. If you’re planning your first trip to Italy and you would like to visit some famous cities, remember that you can find great connections in the Marche Region: you can reach Rome in 3 hours by car and Milan in 3 hours by high-speed train. My personal advice: Don’t forget to take your time and to visit it without hurrying. Le Marche is a region blessed with many interesting things to do and to see and deserves to be deeply experienced; consider it during your travel plans.
Art, History, and Culture
Have you ever dreamed of reliving the ancient Roman times or admire some of the major masterpieces of famous Italian Renaissance artists? Here culture, life, religion, and art are inseparable. Artists have been inspired by the panoramas of Le Marche for centuries, from Piero della Francesca, Raphael, Lorenzo Lotto to Bramante and many others—all have left traces of their genius throughout this region.
Another relevant example: Giacomo Leopardi, one of the most radical thinkers of the 19thcentury, poet, philosopher and renown pessimist. When visiting Recanati, Leopardi’s birthplace, you can take a tour to learn about his life and see Le Marche through the eyes of a creative visionary.
A list of art, history, and culture would never be at the height of this incredible reality!
Best Italian shoes, ever!
Italian shoes are famous for their high quality and design. But did you know that Le Marche is the birthplace of this age-old craft?
The regional shoe tradition has spanned several centuries and is one of the excellences of the “made in Italy.” Still, today it is possible to find ancient craftsmen and to order personalized handmade shoes.
Today, most of the shoe production happens in the south of the region, in Fermo, Ascoli Piceno and Macerata, and makes a million dollars in export turnover.
The list of the most famous shoe factories and manufacturers in the Marche is very long, but I’ll try to mention some of the best-known brands: Tod’s, Hogan, Cesare Paciotti, and Santoni are just some of them.
The region has a large number of factory outlets such as Prada, Hogan, and Tod’s. Here you’ll find also a paradise of gourmet food shopping: truffles sauces, premium pasta, olive oils, exquisite wines, and food boxes!
Castles, walled cities and some of the most beautiful Italian villages
Many castles and villages surrounded by the typical medieval atmosphere will bring you back on time! In Le Marche, you will find many of the most beautiful Italian villages.
The fascinating Gradara Castle in the Pesaro and Urbino province, Corinaldo, an impressive village in the Ancona province, and the charming Montelupone village are just some of the places that will amaze you. It’s not easy to pick just a few examples when you consider that Le Marche is full of incredible hidden gems in each province (Pesaro Urbino, Ancona, Macerata, Fermo, and Ascoli Piceno).
The Tourism Council of the National Association of Italian Municipalities created “The most beautiful villages in Italy” club and this region has more than 20 towns included in the top list. Take note, the cities are: Cingoli, Corinaldo, Frontino, Grottammare, Gradara, Macerata, Feltria, Matelica, Mondavio, Mondolfo, Montecassiano, Montefabbri, Montefiore dell’Aso, Monte Grimano Terme, Moresco, Montelupone, Offagna, Offida, San Ginesio, Sarnano, Treia, and Visso.
The countryside and its splendid rolling hills are perhaps the most remarkable symbol of the Marche region. Whether you are walking the country lanes or driving the winding road to one of the hilltop towns, its valleys and rural landscapes always seem to arrange themselves into a stunning view. Each angle inland is more impressive than the next.
This region is also heart of mysterious secrets. Some cities, for instance, were built over vast underground tunnel systems. Under the Camerano city lies a complex labyrinth of sandstone caves. Initially believed to have been built as a series of storage rooms, as the exploration progressed, the caves revealed a level of complexity that guided archaeologists to deduce they were meant to host people rather than goods. They might have had religious purposes, like early Christian catacombs, or they could have been created as short-term accommodation for the local population in case of external attacks.
The city of Osimo has a complex underground twin. About 2,500 years ago ancient people began to dig the hill in-depth to make defensive ways, secret passages, and to survive.
Their original purpose of the underground city is still a mystery. Some people believe they were a training ground or the place of initiation rites of ancient religious orders.
Marche Italy Natural Parks
Nature is abundant in this territory with many Natural parks that protect falcons, wild boars, and many rare birds. Are you ready to take notes? Here is the list of the regional natural parks and nature reserves:
Monti Sibillini National Park, Gran Sasso e Monti della Laga National Park, Conero Natural Park, del Monte San Bartolo Regional Park, Sasso Simone e Simoncello Natural Park, Gola della Rossa e di Frasassi regional Park, Montagna di Torricchio Nature Reserve, Abbadia di Fiastra Nature reserve, Gola del Furlo Nature Reserve, Ripa Bianca Nature Reserve, Sentina Regional Nature Reserve, Monte San Vicino and Monte Canfaito Regional Nature Reserve.
Remember to pack your hiking boots!
Stunning beaches along the coast
Discover an unexpected and varied coastal heritage. From historic gems with sandy beaches to more hidden pebble coves, you’re sure to find a beach town perfect for your summer (or even middle seasons) adventure.
Your surprise will increase as you travel along the coast, where you will find wild beaches with crystal-clear water and others with many beach amenities, restaurants, and services for families. Discover my suggestions in the post “Best Le Marche beaches”.
Castelfidardo, in the Ancona province, is the Italian heart of accordion music and crafting. Much of the accordion is produced by skilled hands that guarantee an original sound to these instruments, famous all over the world.
The Accordion Museum and the International Accordion Prize of Castelfidardo are two symbols of the importance of this instrument in the region.
The invention of paper is usually attributed to the Chinese, but it was actually the Arabs who, after having learned the techniques and made a few improvements, spread the product throughout the west. It was a long, arduous process that was completed in the 13th century in Fabriano, a little city inland. The reason for this location, which made Fabriano the most significant paper production center of Europe, is probably linked to the vicinity of the Ancona Port, which was particularly open to deal with the Arab world.
In the Paper and Watermark Museum of Fabriano, you can understand the paper manufacturing industry with practical demonstrations, as well as educational courses and workshops (how to make paper using ancient manufacturing techniques, etc.).
Worldwide famous personalities: Maria Montessori, Gioachino Rossini, and Valentino Rossi
There’re many famous marchigiani worldwide: let’s check some of them!
Did you know Maria Montessori, an Italian physician, and educator known for the philosophy of education that bears her name was from Marche Italy (Chiaravalle)?
Gioachino Rossini, a famous Italian composer who gained fame for his operas was born in Pesaro. The Rossini Opera Festival is held every year as a tribute to him.
Also, Valentino Rossi, the famous motorcycle road racer and MotoGP World Champion is marchigiano, from Tavullia! Did you know that?
Impressive churches and religious places
A great example of this enchanted mix of art, faith, and history is Loreto, where the Holy House of Virgin Mary is located. The imposing basilica and fortress complex are impressive.
Basilica di Santa Maria al Piè di Chienti (Montecosaro), Basilica di San Nicola da Tolentino (Macerata Province), San Francesco Church (Fano), Fermo Cathedral, Chiesa di Santa Maria della Rocca (Offida), San Francesco Church (Ascoli Piceno), and San Ciriaco Church (Ancona) are just a few names of the splendid churches in the region.
Whatever your faith, the churches of this region will awe you. Their architectural splendor, their artworks, and their interior majesty are bound to stay with you for life.
Food and Wine:
A food and wine and experience here cannot disappoint you! Most Le Marche food is based on peasant traditions called in Italian “cucina povera”, and dates from a time when poverty was the culinary mother of invention. Fishing traditions are also a strong part of the regional cuisine. Olive all’Ascolana, Moscioli, Brodetto and Vincisgrassi are some of the delicious local dishes.
That isn’t enough: many regional wines are famous worldwide for their special features. Wine is a traditional part of the Italian lifestyle and narrates a relevant part of the region’s cuisine.
Verdicchio, Lacrima del Morro d’Alba, Rosso Conero, Vernaccia di Serrapetrona, Passerina, and Rosso Piceno are some of the most famous wines in the region.
That isn’t enough: Truffle, olive oil, handmade pasta … the mix of outstanding raw materials and ancient traditions will delight you!
As I wrote before: this list is just the beginning!
If you were to ask what Marche Italy is famous for, I hope some of these answers could help you!
Le Marche is one of the best-kept Italian secrets—it will amaze you!
Marche Italy Map
- 10 Places to visit in Le Marche Italy
- Things to do in Le Marche Italy
- Le Marche Italy off the Beaten Path
- Marche Italy Food
- Le Marche Shopping
- Frasassi caves Italy
- San Severino Marche
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About the author Juliana de Brito
Hi, my name is Juliana and It’s nice to e-meet you!
I’m an expat who decided to live in the Marche Region and I’m extremely passionate about it.
Would you like to know more about me and about what binds me to this region?
Just check out the video below.