Parma Off The Beaten Path

  • The View,Castello di Torrechiara, June 2010
    The View,Castello di Torrechiara, June...
    by von.otter
  • Parco Ducale
    Parco Ducale
    by croisbeauty
  • Parco Ducale
    Parco Ducale
    by croisbeauty

Best Rated Off The Beaten Path in Parma

  • Manara's Profile Photo

    In the shade of ancient walls

    by Manara Written Apr 15, 2007

    4.5 out of 5 starsHelpfulness

    I have a special liking for cloisters, because of the sense of peace and harmony they give to me. I appreciate this feeling most if I can find it in the middle of a city. There are three cloisters here in the San Giovanni Abbey, and access is free. If you happen to visit the church of San Giovanni, I strongly recommend you to get in and enjoy, even if for a few minutes, the atmosphere of the cloisters. Upstairs you can visit also the old library, with a precious collection of medieval illuminated books.
    The entrance is easy to find, close to the entrance to the church. The only thing that can be a bit confusing is the fact that you must go through the monks' shop to go to the cloisters.

    Related to:
    • Romantic Travel and Honeymoons
    • Arts and Culture
    • Historical Travel

    Was this review helpful?

  • Manara's Profile Photo

    Giardino di San Paolo

    by Manara Updated Apr 6, 2007

    4.5 out of 5 starsHelpfulness

    It's amazing how much one walks when visiting a city! Especially when it is warm, a tourist needs to sit down somewhere cool.
    In the centre of Parma there are several places where you can sit under the shade of trees, but this small park is certainly my favourite, so quiet and secluded. It is hidden behind a wall, in a narrow street called Borgo Pietro Giordani. This street used to be called "Borgo San Paolo", and in the novel "La Chartreuse de Parme" the lovers Fabrizio and Clelia were supposed to have a secret love-nest here. It is fiction, of course, but it adds a romantic touch to this lovely corner of the old town.
    It is in the city centre, a by-street of Via Garibaldi.

    The gate in Borgo Giordani Inside the park
    Related to:
    • Romantic Travel and Honeymoons
    • Arts and Culture
    • Historical Travel

    Was this review helpful?

  • Mikebond's Profile Photo

    Vittorio Bottego

    by Mikebond Updated Mar 19, 2006

    3.5 out of 5 starsHelpfulness

    If you go to Parma by train, you will see this monument in a square just outside the railway station.
    When I photographed it, I had no idea of who that man was, but I learnt from Anna Maria (Manara)'s Parma page that he was Vittorio Bottego, one of the many explorers who travelled to Africa in the 19th century to discover the areas of the black continent that were still unknown to mankind. There are two more human figures representing two rivers Bottego explored, the Omo and the Juba.

    Vittorio Bottego
    Related to:
    • Arts and Culture
    • Architecture

    Was this review helpful?

  • croisbeauty's Profile Photo

    Palazzo Ducale

    by croisbeauty Updated Mar 27, 2008

    3.5 out of 5 starsHelpfulness

    As already told, the Ducal Park and the Palace were designed by Vignola who was known for its small tower on the central body of the building. During the years, the original structure was modified and extended several times. The entrance to the palace was completely changed, there used to stand the bridge crossing a small lake in front.
    After Farnese's the palace was scarcely used for the summer residence because Bourbons and Marie Louise prefered the other palaces in the surroundings of Parma.
    Today, the palace accommodates the local police forces.

    Palazzo Ducale Palazzo Ducale

    Was this review helpful?

  • croisbeauty's Profile Photo

    Parco Ducale

    by croisbeauty Updated Mar 27, 2008

    3.5 out of 5 starsHelpfulness

    Well, Parco Ducale isn't actually off the beaten path, all you need is to cross the Verdi Bridge behind the Palace Pilotta. The park was wanted by Ottavio Farnese who entrusted to the architect Jacopo Barrozzi detto Vignola to design his summer residence. At that time, of course, the bridge across Torrente and the park were closed for the public visitors. During the reign of Marie Louise the park was opened to the public and in 1866, under the Savoia rule, it became the Municipal Park. In the very beginning of the 20th century the entrance to the Verdi Bridge was opened and the bastions were demolished.

    Parco Ducale Parco Ducale Parco Ducale

    Was this review helpful?

  • croisbeauty's Profile Photo

    Torre della Rocchetta

    by croisbeauty Updated Sep 21, 2014

    3.5 out of 5 starsHelpfulness

    Torre della Rocchetta is the only defending tower left after the bastions around Parco Ducale was demolished in 1905. The tower is located across the Verdi Bridge, left of the main entrance to the park. It has typical and recognizable structure like most of the others defending towers which can be seen in the northern parts of Italy, strong but yet decorative. The park used to be closed for the public visitors when the Duke lived in his palace, today it is one of the favorite parks for the locals who like to spend their free times here.
    Parma is one of the few city-states in Italy in which were not preserved medieval walls around town. At the end of the 19th century the town administration has decided to remove the walls in order to get materials used for the construction of several public facilities and to thereby provide jobs for impoverished day laborers.

    Torre della Rocchetta Torre della Rocchetta

    Was this review helpful?

  • croisbeauty's Profile Photo

    Chiesa di San Antonio Abate

    by croisbeauty Updated Mar 27, 2008

    3.5 out of 5 starsHelpfulness

    Via della Repubblica is the main street in the historic centre of Parma, connecting eastern part of the town and Piazza Garibaldi. There are couple of significant sights in this street, the church of San Sepolcro and the palace Rangoni Farnese in the first place.
    The church of San Antonio Abate is almost hidden, interpolated among the other buildings there. It was established in 1402 by the monks of San Antonio but than reconstructed in 1712 by the design of Fedinando Bibiena. At first sight, both outside and inside aspects, one does not realize it is a sacral place.

    Chiesa di San Antonio Abate

    Was this review helpful?

  • call_me_rhia's Profile Photo

    Monumento a Vittorio Bottego

    by call_me_rhia Written May 28, 2010

    3.5 out of 5 starsHelpfulness

    This monument, dating back to 1907 is dedicated to Vittorio Bottego and was created by the artist Ettore Ximenes, who was a personal friend of Bottego.

    Bottego was a Parma-born explorer who spent much of his life in Africa, in places such as Eritre and Ethiopia in particular, where he died on 17 march1897.

    The statue is located in Piazzale Dalla Chiesa, very near the train station.

    Was this review helpful?

  • oriettaIT's Profile Photo

    Azienda Sperimentale Stuard

    by oriettaIT Updated Sep 6, 2012

    3.5 out of 5 starsHelpfulness

    I went to Parma outskirt to visit a special Farm. The Azienda Sperimentale Stuard is the result of years of study about chili peppers. Right now they have over 500 variety of peppers, for cooking or just for decoration.
    They have a huge online catalogue from where to order plants or seeds and twice a year, in May and in October they organize a special event to meet their customers and show to everybody willing to know more about chili their so called "catalogue field", a big square of land where a few plants of each variety is planted. They have the most hot chili in the world here and every year several chili experts come here to check out the newelty.
    The owner put a lot of passion in his work and every year select new variety and nurture them.
    The field is a fantastic explosion of colors and shapes and it is a joy to explore.
    At the farm is possible to buy chili's seeds, chili fruits, wonderful compositions of chili and several different products made, of course, of chili. We saw salsa of various kind, bruschetta spread and even grappa made out of chili.
    In 2012 the Chili festival will be held Sunday 14 October.

    Chili variety Roses chili Explosion of colours Purple Devil
    Related to:
    • Food and Dining
    • Farm Stay
    • Eco-Tourism

    Was this review helpful?

  • JessieLang's Profile Photo

    Museo del Parmigiano Reggiano

    by JessieLang Updated Oct 23, 2011

    3.5 out of 5 starsHelpfulness

    Go to Sorogna, very near Parma, to visit the Museo del Parmigiano Reggiano. It is located in an 18th Century cheese factory on the grounds of an old castello. They showed a film on the traditional way of making cheese, and then gave us a tour of a modern process. It takes 600 liters of milk to make one big wheel of cheese!

    Naturally, they have a sales shop to visit at the end of the tour

    Open weekends, 10 a.m. to 1 p.m.; 3 p.m. to 6 p.m., from March to early December.
    Entry: 5 Euro

    c/o Corte Castellazzi,
    Via Volta, 5
    Soragna (Northwest of Parma)

    Poster Cheese Museum old cauldron
    Related to:
    • Arts and Culture
    • Museum Visits

    Was this review helpful?

  • lichinga's Profile Photo

    The montain area South of...

    by lichinga Updated Sep 12, 2002

    2.5 out of 5 starsHelpfulness

    The montain area South of Parma is part of the Appennini range. It is an area of ondulated hills, though the highest peaks may reach more than 2,000 metres. The road across the Appennini is a winding one, as it now became a secundary route, as motorways took over the task of receiving the heavy traffic.

    Was this review helpful?

  • lichinga's Profile Photo

    Salsomaggiore is a very...

    by lichinga Written Sep 12, 2002

    2.5 out of 5 starsHelpfulness

    Salsomaggiore is a very important spa centres 30 km away from Parma, at the foot of the hills. It is not the spot illustrated in this picture, but a medium-sized town with several hotels of any possible category.

    Was this review helpful?

  • von.otter's Profile Photo

    Castello di Torrechiara, Part I

    by von.otter Updated Mar 12, 2011

    “I went on to Torrechiara, a tiny hamlet under a hill upon which stands a castle, which from a distance looks like an Aztec temple. Driving up to the castle of Torrechiara, I found to my disappointment that the postern gate was locked.”
    — from “A Traveller in Italy” 1964 by Henry Vollam Morton (1892-1979)

    This spectacular castle in the Province of Parma, but not in Parma proper, is the venue for many summer events, chief among them is the Torrechiara Festival. The castle sits at 912 feet above sea level, encircled by high walls, at the summit of a terraced and cultivated hill on the left bank of the River Parma, and on the main road to Langhirano, the center of the Province’s prosciutto production.

    Because the surrounding countryside is flat, agricultural land (see photo #4) the castello at Torrechiara can be seen from afar.

    The difference between a castello and a rocca is its location. When a castle is located on a hill/mountain it is called a castello. When it is located on flat ground, in a town, it is called a rocca.

    One of the outstanding attractions at Torrechiara are its many richly frescoed rooms (see photo #5 for a detailed example).

    Castello di Torrechiara, June 2010 Castello di Torrechiara, June 2010 Castello di Torrechiara, June 2010 Castello di Torrechiara, June 2010 Castello di Torrechiara, June 2010
    Related to:
    • Architecture
    • Historical Travel
    • Castles and Palaces

    Was this review helpful?

  • von.otter's Profile Photo

    Castello di Torrechiara, Part II

    by von.otter Updated Mar 12, 2011

    “In the Parma district, Pier Maria Rossi was active, having received, it is said, a substantial sum from Venice in order that he might harass the Duke of Milan. These various campaigns produced heavy losses on both sides, although marsh fevers proved more formidable foes than the forces of the enemy.”
    — from “A History of Milan under the Sforza” 1907 by Cecilia Mary Ady and Edward Armstrong

    A fortified building is first talked about at Torrechiara in 1259. At that time, Parma’s mayor ordered that it be demolished and, two years later this same mayor forbid its reconstruction. Despite this obstacle, the current castello was built between 1448 and 1460 by the powerful Count Pier Maria Rossi. Successfully combining defensive and residential purposes, this castello remains one of the most brilliant and aesthetically pleasing sights of its kind in the Parma area.

    The powerfully built walls, shown in these photos, of the castello give some idea of its successful defensive purposes.

    Castello di Torrechiara, June 2010 Castello di Torrechiara, June 2010 Castello di Torrechiara, June 2010 Castello di Torrechiara, June 2010 Castello di Torrechiara, June 2010
    Related to:
    • Architecture
    • Historical Travel
    • Castles and Palaces

    Was this review helpful?

  • von.otter's Profile Photo

    Castello di Torrechiara, Part III

    by von.otter Updated Mar 12, 2011

    Castello di Torrechiara is arranged in rectangular plan, with four towers rising at the corners and linked by crenellated dovetailed walls. One of the towers is twice as tall and dominates the others.

    The castle is located 10 miles south of Parma, in the heart of the rich agricultural land that the region, Emilia-Romagna, is known for.

    Towers of Castello di Torrechiara, June 2010 Towers of Castello di Torrechiara, June 2010 Towers of Castello di Torrechiara, June 2010 Towers of Castello di Torrechiara, June 2010 Towers of Castello di Torrechiara, June 2010
    Related to:
    • Historical Travel
    • Castles and Palaces
    • Architecture

    Was this review helpful?

Instant Answers: Parma

Get an instant answer from local experts and frequent travelers

29 travelers online now

Comments

Parma Off The Beaten Path

Reviews and photos of Parma off the beaten path posted by real travelers and locals. The best tips for Parma sightseeing.

View all Parma hotels