Mantua in two days, 8 places not to be missed

It’s been years since we promised to Nicoletta going to Mantua to visit her, finally this year we stopped promising and we left!
In Mantua in two days we discovered a wonderful city only two hours drive from home, a city with an incredible history and the incredible Renaissance charm, that you see on every street corner.

This stay saw us guests an elegant coffered ceilings 500 House found on airbnb, solution that allowed us to immerse ourselves more in the Renaissance atmosphere that permeates the whole city!

The forecast included lightning bolts since our arrival, but fortunately and far beyond our hopes, we arrived in Mantua with the Sun and the entrance to the San Giorgio we opened our eyes the view of city skyline reflected on the Mincio at first light of evening, we left from here in awe and this was just the beginning!

Mantova this year is capital of Italian culture and has been prepared for this occasion a special related site from which you can browse app, in addition to all points of interest, also all the events organized for the occasion, month by month. This is the link to the website of Mantua phygital city that certainly will help you organize your trip to the city.

What follows is my personal list of things not to be missed!

1 ranked first among the things not to miss in Mantua there is the skyline room for free upon arrival from ponte San Giorgio, beautiful at sunset, even more impressive at night.

skyline Mantova in two days

camera_degli_sposi2 not to be missed, especially now that after the restoration has been reopened to the public, the bridal chamber contained in the Northeast Tower of the castle of San Giorgio (part of the ducal palace complex) completely painted by Mantegna for which he studied architectural limits exceeding decorations of the room. To visit it is recommended to book the trips are limited (to avoid damaging the frescoes) and that the lines are long, more info here. Important: remember that the first Sunday of each month is free!

Basilica_santa_barbara3 steps away from the basilica of Santa Barbara built by Gonzaga and seriously damaged (especially in the belfry) by an earthquake in 2012, returned to the city a few days before we arrived, enchanted left us for at least three reasons:

  • the splendor of the façade and the Interior impressive;
  • the organ of the most ancient and precious nowadays kept in Italy and recently restored, which attracts scholars and musicians of this music from around the world;
  • and for the third but not least the incredible kindness of volunteers of the Italian Touring Club, which in addition to the opening of the basilica and then allow everyone to visit, they also accompanied in the visit and set apart of their knowledge. At our request, one of the two gentlemen on duty was more than happy to show us with incredible pride before the old restored organ, then also the sacristy of the basilica where he told us the story of how the relic of the blood of Christ is come down to Mantua and there is still preserved, but don’t think that I tell you this story If you want to know your going to visit Santa barbara or Sant’Andrea!

4 the incredible palazzo Te, where one room after another will increasingly amazed by the incredible work that Giulio Romano has performed to enhance the magnificence of the Gonzaga family, be sure to see the secret garden Apartment spiritual retreat of Frederick II.

If you want to avoid long lines best book, online, for more details visit www. Important: admission is free every Monday after the first Sunday of the month.

skyline Mantova in two days, palazzo te

5 on the fifth place of my don’t miss it there is something that has nothing to do with art, or maybe even you?? However the garden of San Domenico near the Lungorio IV novembre on Saturday morning you will have the honor to enjoy with eyes, nose and maybe, why not, taste, the delights of a food market of products coming from local farms. that makes your mouth water!! one of those niches that fills my heart, love the small food markets where you can buy flowers and herbs cheese cured meats and the most succulent can offer the land you are visiting!!

6 go back to art; Palazzo Ducale that too I do not to be missed in particular remember to visit the apartment of Isabella d’Este to which Frederick II drew inspiration for his in palazzo Te, the ticket you can do this in combination with the grooms room, booking online from by calling the call center: 041-2411897 Monday to Friday from 8.30 to 19.00 Saturdays from 9.00 to 14.00.

7 Sant’Andrea commissioned by Ludovico III Gonzaga to Leon Battista Alberti, a very special, its ornate basilica is composed almost exclusively of frescoes. The basilica can be visited free of charge by the public outside mass, moments in which Italian Touring Club volunteers here will take you on tour, showing you how much there is to know, reserving for last to take you to the vault where they kept the glasses with the relics of the blood of Jesus Christ. We merged with the explanation in illustration course, but there was no problem, don’t worry don’t feel abusive, volunteers are there for you and will be glad if you will join their explanation!

Basilica di sant andrea

IMG_20160425_1257258 best gastronomy Mantua Delicatessen B John Via orefici 16, where you can buy delicious gastronomic memories (my favorites) by choosing from an incredible assortment of mustards from all genres that accompany the incredible cheeses they sale and fabulous cold cuts;

Between visits, you may happen to be hungry, Mantua is all to taste, offers delicious dishes from excellent taverns that dot the whole Centre, but the selection you made for us by our “Guide” was flawless, has not missed a shot!

If you want to go without fail the locals that you list here are tested and guaranteed!

img_20160422_225217.jpgThe kitchen provides a minimal environment with coffered ceilings, the menu changes according to season and that to me is always a strength, the steak tartare is great and also the filet, the price is not just content, but worth the money.

Where is: Via Guglielmo Oberdan, 17-46100 Mantova tel. 0376

img_20160423_153140.jpgYellow Pumpkin warm and welcoming host that will indicate the right wine for your dish, booking, guests can also eat outside in the square. The dishes change monthly giving new interpretations of classic mantovani, try the amberjack, are still on the menu!

Where is it: the Court of Sogliari, 4-Mantova tel.


Osteria piazza sordello 26 local and host welcoming, not at this late hour ostate where we met for lunch we were treated with every attention and kindness. Yummy dried salted cod, but especially the desserts here I tasted the best crumble these days!

Location: Piazza Sordello, 26-Mantova tel. + 39 0376


Ono sushi if one evening you want to escape from the Mantuan tradition I recommend this great Japanese restaurant where in a modern setting and treated in detail you can enjoy delicious sushi and sashimi dishes based on fresh fish. Try the Saudagi, Brazilian name for a raw dish.

Location: p.zza Mozzarelli, 15-Mantova tel.

img_20160424_110333.jpgFor breakfast pastry Antoniazzi bag coffee great cupcakes, although not strictly economic, I tasted a delicious Strawberry tart and is also remarkable the linkwithin portion, less notable traditional pasta instead.

Where is it: the course of freedom, 6-46100 Mantova tel. 0376

Now I just have to wish you a good visit to Mantova, in two days you can see and do so many things, I add that to my next visit I will definitely try to have lunch at Osteria the four big practically an institution in Mantua … this time it was closed and escaped us, but maybe next, try it yourself and let me know!

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