PARMA - EMILIA ROMAGNA - Travel Guide & Hotels%PARMA %
PARMA TRAVEL GUIDE
Parma is an Emilian city of 195,489 inhabitants. The origins of its name are not clear: according to some it derives from some Etruscan tribes of the area, called Parmeal or Parmnial, according to others from the round shield used by the Romans. In any case, the first settlements date back to the Bronze Age, as evidenced by some findings of terramare, ancient villages typical of this area. Like other cities on Via Emilia, Parma was also inhabited by the Romans until the period of barbarian invasions. In 500 there is a short period of rebirth and renewal, thanks to King Theodoric I and then to the Byzantines. After the wars between Guelphs and Ghibellines, Parma passes under the control of the Visconti family and later the Sforza family. In mid-1500 Pope Paolo II created the Duchy of Parma and Piacenza, which was governed by the Farnese family until the first half of 1700. After a brief period when the Duchy was under the control of the Borboni, it was annexed by the Asburgo, until which is not conquered by Napoleon in 1802.
what to see and what to do in PARMA
The city is full of picturesque and evocative corners that demonstrate its importance as one of the main cultural centers in Italy. It is built around Piazza Duomo, where the Cathedral and the Baptistery stand: the Cathedral is in Romanesque style and on the façade you can see three portals, with the central one surrounded by two lions bearing a protiro, a small portico surmounted by a round arch; the upper part is enriched by three loggias formed by blind singled-arch windows. Inside you can admire the frescoes of 1500 that develop on three thematic areas: the Old Testament, the New Testament and the allegorical figures. The octagonal dome houses a large fresco by Correggio which represents the Assumption of the Madonna. Next to the Cathedral is the Baptistery, built in 1200, in octagonal pink marble, decorated externally with full and empty spaces that create a chiaroscuro effect. Inside, the dome is divided into sixteen segments divided in turn into six concentric and thematic horizontal bands, while the sixteen niches represent religious scenes. Very beautiful the Basilica of Santa Maria della Steccata, from the 1500s, with a Greek cross plan with four chapels that rise between the arms and give it a particular aspect; inside you can admire many beautiful frescoes of the seventeenth-century Parma school, such as the dome, by Bernardino Gatti, which represents the Assumption of Mary. The sculptural group of the Pietà by Tommaso Bandini is very beautiful. Worth a visit is the wonderful Abbey of Valserena, dating back to 1300, in the Gothic-Longobard style, inside which you can admire many valuable paintings, including a fresco by Parmigianino. But Parma is also and above all the city of music, and this passion manifests itself with a wide variety of musical proposals and dedicated structures, such as the Paganini Auditorium, designed by architect Renzo Piano starting from the existing Eridania sugar refinery, the Home of Arturo Toscanini and the Teatro Regio, one of the most famous theatres in the world.
PARMA - FOOD CITY
Parma is also known for its gastronomic specialties, such as Prosciutto and Culatello di Zibello. Among the typical dishes we find the tortelli di erbetta, stuffed with ricotta and herbs and rigorously seasoned with butter and Parmesan. Another typical dish is the fried cake, fried pasta rectangles, usually served together with cold cuts. Among the desserts you can find the castagnaccio, a cake made with chestnut flour, typically autumn, while wine lovers can enjoy a good glass of Malvasia, Sauvignon or Fontana del Faro, typical of the flat area around the city.
Events in PARMA
There are many events that take place in Parma: in March there is Cioccolato Vero, a weekend full of taste, with tastings and performances by the greatest master chocolatiers; also in March, on the occasion of the Fiera di San Giuseppe, stalls selling local crafts and street food are set up, all accompanied by street artists. Every year in the month of October the Verdi Festival takes place, in honor of the great Italian composer, during which perform internationally renowned artists but also young performers in the theatres and in the auditorium of the city.