Tuesday, May 14, 2013

Bella vistas: Padova

A Sunday arrival in Padova - aka Padua - meant the tourist information office was closed. Armed with a 15-year-old map without a scale we trudged to our hotel thinking it was only a short distance and direct route. Walking a mile or so is usually no problem, but between the wayward turns, rough sidewalk, very warm sunny weather and the extra burden of luggage, we I arrived at the hotel exhausted and cranky.

We had a view of Basilico di Sant' Antonio, aka Basilico del Santo, across the street.
view from our hotel room window
Basilico del Santo from street level
After 30 minutes respite and a quick late lunch, we set out to explore the city. Padova is more urban and more Roman than Trieste. We did visit a few churches . . . 
dome in the Duomo
and standard attractions, such as Capella degli Scrovegni for Giotto's frescoes (scoring tickets was insane). Mostly we walked and walked. Part of the fun was exploring the big piazza, discovering the little hidden campos (squares), and window shopping. 
from above: Piazza delle Erbe - an open air fresh produce market
butcher in the market hall
One day we took a train trip to nearby Vicenza, hiked all the way up Mount Berico . . .
view of Vicenza from the hill
on a circuitous route to La Rotunda, aka Villa Capra Valmarena, the epitome of Palladio's architecture.
La Rotunda
It's as beautiful inside as it is out.  The round central hall is covered with beautiful frescos. But, sorry, no photos were allowed of the interiors. I gleaned from the docents that the owners use this place only during warmer weather. Not so much as a summer palace, but as a setting for corporate events and fundraisers. Imagine attending a party there! 

After coming back down the hill we took many wrong turns, got totally disoriented and walked in circles. When we finally got un-lost, we paid the price: gelatos. Reward for walking - ?

1 comment:

  1. Love hearing about your recent trip, especially since we spent two weeks in Italy, Greece, Sicily, and last stop in Barcelona last fall. Brings back fond memories.