Contemporary architecture of Ferrara fits perfectly into the old core of the town. It almost look alike to the medieval buildings and houses which might be seen in its close surroundings. As far as I have seen it, not many city authorities have planed the new structure of the town with such a care. Well done Ferraresi!
There is a nice cafe-bar in the groundfloor of Palazzo Municipale where traditional Ferrara's cake Pampepato can be tasted. First I was a littlebit confused by its name because "pepato" means peppered. The story says it was created by the great Renaissance cook Cristoforo da Messiburgo, assigned to be send to the great personages of the age.
The cake is made in the form of small pumpkin enriched with fine almonds or hazelnuts and tasty candied fruit, flavoured with the most fragnant spices and all covered with plain chocolate.
The name come out of "Pan del Papa" (Bread of the Pope), but through time the name was transformed into Pampapato and Pampepato. Now it is Ferrara's Christmas cake.
Il Palio di San Giorgio: the Victors
“Ferrara! in thy wide and grass-grown streets,
Whose symmetry was not for solitude,
There seems, as ‘twere, a curse upon the seats
Of former sovereigns, and the antique brood
Of Este, which, for many an age, made good
Its strength within thy walls, and was of yore
Patron or tyrant, as the changing mood
Of petty power impell’d, of those who wore
The wreath which Dante’s brow alone had worn before.”
— from “Childe Harold’s Pilgrimage” by Lord Byron
When the last race was run and won, all participants filed back to the town center as orderly as when they arrived. Below the windows of Palazzo del Municipio, facing Piazza della Cattedrale, the flag of the contrada of each winner was placed.
At the far left window was the winner of the Boys’ Foot Race (see photo #2), Palio di San Romano; Karim Bouic, from Borgo San Giovanni, was the victor.
The next window was the place for the winner of the Girls’ Foot Race (see photo #3) Palio di San Paolo; from Borgo San Benedetto, Giorgia Mancin was the winner.
The third window from the left is the spot for the winner of the She-ass Race (see photo #4), Palio di San Maurelio; riding a donkey named Baracus, Cristiano Occhi won the prize for Borgo San Paolo.
And the window on the far right end is where the winner of the Horse Race, Palio di San Giorgio, gets to display the flag of his contrada (see photo #5). It was won for Borgo San Giorgio by Alessandro Chiti riding Grein.
The crowd went wild with cheering when the flags of the contrade were put in place; and each time the victor appeared at the window.
Winners and their contrada had earned bragging rights for a full year.
Church of Santo Stefano
This church, dating back to as early as 11th century, has, unfortunately, preserved very little of its former aspect. For example, the faýade is the result of extensive restoration programme carried out in year 1825. Note the marble portal, taken from another church, that went destroyed.
The 3-nave interior has works by Giacomo Parolini and dello Scarsellino - that's 17th century. In front of the church there are several nice medieval houses.
The church we see today was built in 1726 over an older church of the 13th century, of which only the bell tower and cappella Canani ("Canani chapel") remain.
Inside there are paintings by Ferrarese artists of the 16th, 17th and 18th centuries. The floor is covered with ancient tombstones and the apse has a wooden choir built by Giovanni Baisi in 1348.