For those of you who like places that are “off-the-beaten-track” of mass tourism, Padua is another recommended stop to make to and from your transfers between Venice and Florence.
Geographically situated in the center of the Veneto region, Padua was the cradle of the paleoveneta cities of the 9th century AC. It became a free commune in the 12th century and underwent an extraordinary economic, cultural, and religious boom. Today you will see a fascinating city - elegant and discreet - immersed in a medieval atmosphere. Every corner of the historic center has something worthwhile to see. It’s center is made up of narrow medieval streets, of porticoes and monumental squares reminding all of its noble and ancient past.
The Padua you see today is the Padua from the 12th century. Its famous university is from this period as is the “Palazzo della Regione”, the building of the Basilica del Santo, and the first city walls.
In the 14th century Padua reached its height of political and military power with the leaders “Carrarese”, the confirm the city’s role as fundamental center of Humanist and Renaissance culture, attracting many writers and artists. When Padua became part of the Republic of Venice, the last public buildings, churches, and the new city walls are built. Today much of the 15th century walls are visible. You will see a part of 18th century Padua as well. The immensely scenic Prato della Valle is one of the largest and most celebrated squares of Europe. Built on the site of a large theater in the Roman period, “Lo Zairo” whose foundations came to light during the construction of the new square.
While in Padua you should make a stop at the historic “Café Pedrocchi”. In business since 1831 and still an important part of the city scene in Padua, this café was once a meeting place for students and intellectuals, becoming then the symbol of independence from the Austrian Empire.
Don’t miss a visit to the Basilica of St. Anthony. The beloved saint Anthony was born in but spent a large portion of his life in where in fact he died near Padua in 1231. According to his wishes his boy was brought to the little church of Santa Maria Mater Domini in Padua to be buried. It was on this spot that the actual Basilica stands - the result of three different reconstructions that took place over a period of 70 years between 1238 and 1310. Of particular interest in this basilica is the Chapel of the Treasury where St. Anthony’s relics can be seen.
Padua has always had an active cultural importance and was the birthplace of Pietro d’Abano who was a physician, philosopher, scientist, and a professor at the Sorbonne in Paris. Galileo was another important scientist who chose this city to build his observatory. Many artists have created masterpieces in Padua, for instance Giotto and his incredible cycle of frescoes in the Scrovegni Chapels, Giusto de’ Menabuoi who painted in the Duomo and the Baptistery, and Andrea Mantegna in the Ovetary Chapel. The ancient University, still very much active today, attracted students such as Dante and Petrarch. At the end of this stop, your private transfer will end up at your destination. less >>
The proposed itineraries are only examples of possible tours. For different pick up / drop off locations or customized itineraries we invite our clients to contact one of our tour coordinators to help them design their own tour.