THINGS TO DO IN VICENZA – 10 original ideas for visiting Palladio’s city
Best known as the City of Palladio and listed by Unesco as a World Heritage Site, Vicenza hosts many historical and cultural treasures, partly overshadowed by the fame of its great architect. We would like to give you 10 original ideas about what to see and do in Vicenza to discover the parts of the city often overlooked by hasty tourists :
1. A WALK AMONG PALLADIO'S MASTERPIECES– Yes, we know: this is a must see for every traveller and the idea does not sound so original. You cannot come to Vicenza and miss the masterpieces designed by Andrea Palladio during 16th century. His buidings are everywhere in the city centre and some of them can also be visited inside. We recommend you see, at least, the Basilica, Teatro Olimpico, Palazzo Barbaran da Porto - now hosting the Palladio Museum - and Palazzo Chiericati - with its Art Gallery.
The original idea we give you is to do something more than just taking pictures in front of the most important sites, but to try to understand the revolutionary significance of Palladian art and the genius behind his architectural solutions. A half-a-day private guided tour in the historical centre of Vicenza is a good way to realize how much his ideas are still important nowadays and the influence they have had in all of western architecture.
2. A NIGHT AT THE THEATRE– If you are lucky enough to be visiting Vicenza during concert season (April/May) or drama season (September/October), don't miss the chance to watch a show at the Teatro Olimpico: the most beautiful theatre in the world, according to internationally famous musicians and actors.
3. A CAT ON THE PLATE!– People who live in Vicenza are known in Italy as magnagati, which means cats-eaters! Luckily, this is just a joke and nobody in town will be able to recommend you a place where you can eat a real cat dish. Instead, many people will tell you where to taste the famous baccalà alla vicentina. However, if you really want to feel like a real Vicenza cats-eater you should buy La Gata (the cat), a typical cake made with Marano corn flour and grappa. This can be also an original present for your friends.
4. THE ICONS OF PALAZZO LEONI MONTANARI– Did you know that Vicenza also has an amazing baroque palace, a few metres from the Teatro Olimpico? Palazzo Leoni Montanari hosts an interesting exhibition of Veneto art and the biggest collection of Russian Icons in Europe. You can't miss it if you are an art lover.
5. TREASURE HUNT AMONG THE CITY STREETS– Wandering around the small streets, called contrà, in Vicenza can be a wonderful experience. Most tourists only walk along Corso Palladio or in Piazza dei Signori, but we highly recommend you “get lost” in the backstreets. If you like taking pictures, you will find a lot of marvelous noble houses, suggestive corners and interesting details.
6. THE INCREDIBLE EXHIBITIONS OF PALAZZO THIENE- Palazzo Thiene was supposed to be, according to Palladio and his client’s drawings, the biggest aristocratic mansion in Vicenza. Only a small portion of the grandiose project was completed and nowadays the building hosts the head office and art exhibitions of the local bank. Here you can admire the big collection of Venetian Oselle (medal-coins minted by the Doge), the 18th century prints of the Remondini family and Arturo Martini’s sculptures. Everything is on display in rooms of great architecture value, which are only occasionally open to the public. Maybe this makes this place even more precious.
7. THE REAL MADE-IN-ITALY- Vicenza is famous all around the world for its gold handicraft laboratories, while the province is well renowned for the production of textiles and stone, ceramic, glass, leather and paper craftsmanship. The result of this work is so good it should be exhibited in a museum and that is exactly what the organisers of ViArt decided to do, a few metres from Piazza dei Signori. Here the best of local artistic handicraft is on display and you are sure to find only the real Made in Italy.
8. THE CLOISTER OF SAN LORENZO– While people on group tours are busy admiring the art treasures of the Santa Corona church and the Basilica of Monte Berico, we recommend you take a break to enjoy the silence of the cloister in San Lorenzo church, a small oasis in the heart of the city.
9. URBAN HIKING– If you love to walk, you will certainly like the idea of getting away from the historical centre for a couple of hours for a small hike up the slopes of the Berici Hills. From Vicenza you can reach the Basilica of Monte Berico on foot. From there you can have a wonderful view of the city’s roofs, domes and towers. Then you can go on towards the historical park of Villa Guiccioli, the small Oasi della Valletta del Silenzio, Villa La Rotonda – the most copied Palladian villa in the world - and Villa Valmarana ai Nani – famous for Tiepolo’s frescoes and for the dwarfs’ legend.
10. A TRIBUTE TO PIGAFETTA– If you are thinking of visiting Vicenza and you have been patient enough to read this far, you really are a curious and committed traveller. We want to reward your curiosity by showing you the way to Antonio Pigafetta's house. There you can pay tribute to this famous sailor from Vicenza, who, together with Magellan, completed the first circumnavigation of the world and described all the details of that amazing experience in his diary.
You will probably need more than one day to see and do all the things we recommended on this page. If you decide to stay a couple of nights in our Boutique Hotel you will have the chance to discover also Marostica and Bassano del Grappa. You won’t regret it!
Only here you can find:
- Best available rates and offers
- Buffet Breakfast included in the rate
- free private parking space
- 10% discount at Restaurant Cuori
- Free city bike
- children stay for free up to 3 years old
to choose Due Mori
- It is the only hotel inside Marostica’s medieval walls
- Rooms with a view of the medieval town and castles
- Monica is a professional tourist guide
- Wide rooms furnished with natural materials
- Private car park and city-bikes