[Covid has brought the fear of traveling and many of you ask me if traveling in Italy is safe in this period.
Yes, Italy is rising with extreme strength and courage, in every place there are health and hygiene rules that allow the complete sanification of the environments. Is traveling in Italy safe? If you comply with the regulations, yes ]
If you can take a day off in this strange post-lockdown life and you would like to discover an amazing city, book a train to Padua and be amazed!
Whether you are culture lovers or more partygoers, you can find the best compromise here in the cradle of the famous Venetian aperitif. Did you know that with its twelve kilometers of arcades you can visit Padua, the city with any weather and in any season? Do not be frightened by the autumn fog or the summer heat because between art, gastronomy, alleys, shops and squares the day will fly fast regardless the weather.
Visit Padua in one day
Like any city, surely a day is not enough to discover all its wonders, but I know that often that is the only free time we have … so here I offer you a small step by step itinerary to get a general idea of it and then maybe come back and stay over a few days to visit the rest of the province that offers a lot. You can choose between beautiful natural spas in Abano Terme, delicious walks in the Euganean hills, cycling in the open air along the river ring and wonderful medieval villages such as Arquà Petrarca.
Let’s start from the train station because the most practical way to reach the city is actually by train. From here, in a few steps, you can reach the Gardens of the Arena, a very animated city park where you can admire the remains of an ancient Roman theater while sipping a cold drink on the deckchairs offered by the numerous kiosks present. Once regenerated from your journey, head over to Giotto’s spectacular frescoes in the Scrovegni Chapel. I recommend that you access it early in the less crowded shifts to be enraptured by the colors in peace, with your head upwards. The visit lasts about half an hour and is very interesting for culture and non-culture lovers, especially because the colors are incredible and are very instagrammable.
Visit Padua, have a rest eating something good
Well, now it should the right time to have a coffee at the very famous and ancient Caffè Pedrocchi. You will have the opportunity to sit at the same table as your literary idols like Stendhal, D’Annunzio and Gautier in a mixed neoclassical and romantic setting, between large mirrors and marble counters.
Just after the café, the main shopping streets begin, in particular via Roma with its numerous low-cost fashion chains that fit together with the haute couture shops. I told you that this city would put anyone at ease!
If you feel hungry after shopping, you might consider buying fresh take-away pasta from Bigoi Padova and eating it on site. However if you prefer something less rustic, go to the Duomo area and you will find numerous taverns and trattorias with typical menus suitable for all tastes.
Visit Padua and its largest square in Italy!
Now that you are refreshed and rested, are you ready to see the largest square in Italy? I am speaking of Prato della Valle, a large open space with a green island in the center surrounded by a canal decorated with statues depicting famous characters from the past. Here, with the right light, you can take spectacular photos and enjoy some great architectural views.
A little further on, taking Belludi street you will find yourself in front of the extraordinary Basilica del Santo or Basilica of Sant’Antonio. Attended annually by millions of international pilgrims, it was built in 1232 to guard the remains of the famous Franciscan friar. If you are not fond of religious culture, however, the idea of seeing an 800 year old language may fascinate you. Yes, yes, I mean the muscle we use most often: the saint’s tongue is kept in an artistic reliquary visible in the chapel of the treasure behind the apse!
If you are not a lover of noir but rather of another type of biology, you should definitely consider a visit to the botanical garden, the oldest in the world still in its original location. It has been included in the UNESCO heritage because it is considered “at the origin of all the botanical gardens in the world and represents the cradle of science, scientific exchanges and understanding of the relationships between nature and culture. It has largely contributed to the progress of many modern scientific disciplines, in particular botany, medicine, chemistry, ecology and pharmacy. ” (official UNESCO quote)
Even if you are not interested in biology, it is still a pleasant garden, well organized with secular trees, majestic plants and delicate flowers: a delight for the eyes and senses.
At this point you can decide if you had enough of culture and want to stop for the typical aperitif or if you want to enjoy other museums. In both cases, head towards Piazza delle Erbe and Piazza dei Signori, where you can find Palazzo della Ragione, del Capitanio and the Clock Tower.
In particular Piazza dei Signori is the living room of the city, with its numerous tables and clubs it is the ideal place for the most typical happy hour!
Well, here we are at the end of your day in Padua and you can walk to the station or if you prefer you can take the tram enjoying nice views of the city from the window… I am sure you will come back to see more!
Even Shakespeare wished for a lifetime to reach the famous city of doctors and he loved it so much that he spoke about it several times in his writings.
For the great desire I had to see
beautiful Padua, the cradle of the arts, I have arrived …
and to Padua I have come, as one who leaves
a pond to dive into the sea, ed
to satiety he tries to quench his thirst.