Parma Things to Do

  • Duomo di Parma, Rear Exterior, June 2010
    Duomo di Parma, Rear Exterior, June 2010
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  • Verdi Monument, Parma, June 2010
    Verdi Monument, Parma, June 2010
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  • Palazzo Pilotta
    Palazzo Pilotta
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Most Recent Things to Do in Parma

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    Palazzo Marchi - Grillo

    by croisbeauty Updated Sep 20, 2014

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    Palazzo Marchi or Grillo was commissioned by the Marquis Scipione Grillo, Duke of Anguillara, who entrusted construction of it to architect and abbot Giovanni Furlani. The palace was built between 1770 and 1774, representing an important example of Neoclassical style. The interior is richly adorned, especially the staircase that leaf to the upper floor. Besides, the palace preserved its valuable and beautiful 16th century furniture and great number of paintings, among which "San Rocco" by Parmigianino.
    Today the palace houses The Arturo Toscanini Foundation.

    Palazzo Marchi - Grillo

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    San Vitale

    by croisbeauty Updated Sep 20, 2014

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    First document that mentions the martyr Vitale in Parma dating from the 11th century. The original building was located in the vicinity of "Platea Communis", now Piazza Garibaldi. In 1644 the church has become the seat of "Compagnia del Suffragio (society for the right to vote), very strong associations especially during the reign of Ranuccio II and his mother Margherita de' Medici. This was the reason that the new church, dedicated to San Vitale, built in nearby Via Repubblica.
    The construction of the new church began in 1651 and was completed in 1676. Over the years the church has been enriched with works of art of great value. These are the works of the most prominent artists of that era, such as G.Peroni, S.Ricci and many others.

    San Vitale

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    Santa Teresa del Bambin Gesu

    by croisbeauty Updated Sep 20, 2014

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    Santa Teresa del Bambin Gesu, also known as "chiesa della Trnita Nuova" is a parish church situated in Via Garibaldi. The church was founded in 1584 by the Confraternita dei Rossi" (they wore a red hood), who were established in order to help pilgrims who passed Via Francigena. In fact, this church was founded under the name "Oratorio dei Trinita Rossi". In 1604, however, dei Rossi left this church and moved to the small oratory of San Barnaba.
    The original oratory was enlarged in the three different periods 1636, 1685 and finally in 1693. The present marble facade was built from 1862-64, following the design of Ernesto Piazza. In 1920 the church was passed on to the Discalced Carmelites and renamed in 1973 as Santa Teresa del Bambin Gesu.

    Santa Teresa del Bambin Gesu

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    Chiesa di San Francesco del Prato

    by croisbeauty Updated Sep 18, 2014

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    Chiesa di San Francesco del Prato (San Franciscan church) is the masterpiece of Gothic art in Emilia Romagna. The church was constructed in 1240/1250 but first time mentioned in the document only in 1298. The building was lengthened and finished around 1462. The center of the facade is decorated with the splendid Gothic rosette, with a terracotta frame. This original rose windows, from 1461, has sixteen rays, which in the medieval tradition represented the house of God.
    In 1810, from Napoleonic era up to 1990, the church was turned into a city jail and later became dilapidated. During that period the front facade has been changed and mutilated with sixteen windowas which were constructed for the purpose of a jail.

    chiesa di San Francesco del Prato chiesa di San Francesco del Prato chiesa di San Francesco del Prato chiesa di San Francesco del Prato chiesa di San Francesco del Prato

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    Chiesa di San Pietro

    by croisbeauty Updated Sep 18, 2014

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    The church of San Pietro is Neoclassic construction designed by the French architect E.A.Petitot, and its construction was completed in 1762. The first church of San Pietro, on the same site, was mentioned in 955, and it was rebuilt during the 15th century in a Gothic style.
    The facade is decorated with a papal symbols of the tiara, festoons and keys. Interiors of the church contains some valuable paintings of notable artists.
    During Napoleonic government in Parma, the church was suppressed and reconsecrated in 1852, only to be suppressed again in 1867.

    chiesa di San Pietro

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    Ponte Verdi

    by croisbeauty Updated Sep 18, 2014

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    Original stone bridge from the Roman period in Middle Ages has been replaced by a wooden bridge which in times collapsed. In the 17th century has been built a new wooden bridge that led from the Palace Pilotta and ending bellow the Torre della Rocchetta. Since it was painted in green color the locals called it Ponte Verde (the green bridge). The picture of that bridge can be seen on a postcard from 1904, along with the new bridge next to it, which was named after Giuseppe Verdi.

    Ponte Verdi Ponte Verdi Ponte Verdi the old Ponte Verde

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    Vescovado

    by croisbeauty Updated Sep 17, 2014

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    Vescovado is Bishop's Residence, situated just in front of the Cathedral. It was founded in the first half of the 11th century, ordered by the Bishop Cadalo, the future anti-Pope. The internal portico was erected in the 15th century. The palace accomodates a rich collection of paintings and seven slabs dating back to the 12th century found in the Cathedral's Presbytery.
    In front of the palace stands small but beautiful sculpture of a girl with the manuscript. Unfortunatelly I couldn't collect any information regarding that sculpture. There is a name of Abigail carved on the sculpture.

    the statue of Abigail

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    The Palace in the Park

    by Manara Updated May 24, 2013

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    This palace, inside the Parco Ducale, is the Palazzo Ducale. It is where the Dukes lived, whereas the Palazzo Pilotta was used for functions and was the home of dignitaries.
    This small palace was built in the XVI century, but it was completely changed two centuries later.
    It is currently, and it has been for several years, the premises of the RIS (Reparto Investigazioni Scientifiche = Department of Scientific Investigations, the equivalent of CSI) in charge of scientific investigations for Northern Italy.

    The Palace in springtime The Palace with snow The Palace in the snowy park The palace in Autumn
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    Salumificio La Perla - Parma Ham

    by 807Wheaton Updated Sep 25, 2012

    We visited Salumificio La Perla to see the production of the famous "Prosciutto di Parma". This family has been growing this business for 20 years. The Prosciutto is 100% natural and quite fat free - low percentage of cholesterol.
    La Perla lies in Quinzano not far from Langhirano among the green hills of the Appennines.
    We were told there were 55,000 hams curing. Here we saw all the steps of the production of the ham. There are tattoes on the legs when the process starts which is proof of real prosciutto. Salt from the sea is used for the curing process so the geographic location is important. The air from the hills and the sea make a climate to dry the meat. By law Parma Ham can only be produced in the Parma region using pigs born and bred in Italy. Only hams that have been aged for a aminimum of 12 months are given the Ducal Crown and allowed to be sold as Parma Ham.
    This tour was followed by a complete meal made of mixed cold meat, Parmigiano Reggiano, bread, stuffed pasta, wine and homemade cakes.

    Our host Curing hams Our tour guide Silvanah
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    Pilotta Palace

    by JessieLang Updated Nov 2, 2011

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    The Pilotta Palace, built in1583, was the home of the powerful Farnese family. Giulia Farnese was the mistress of Pope Alexander VI, and her brother, Allesandro, became Pope Paul III. Allesandro’s son, Pier Luigi, became the Duke of Parma in 1545 and built the palace.

    There was a church on the grounds, but Napoleon tore it down. Trees have been planted where the church pillars once stood. Two wings of the palace were rebuilt after the Allied bombing in 1944. One palace was not rebuilt—it had been the headquarters for the fascists, and the townspeople tore it down. There is a monument to the partisans in its former courtyard.

    The buildings now contain the National Archaeological Museum, the Bodoni Museum, the Teatro Farnese, and the National Gallery.

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    The Cathedral & Bishop's Palace

    by JessieLang Updated Oct 23, 2011

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    The Cathedral was consecrated in 1109, destroyed by an earthquake in 1117, and quickly rebuilt. Additions continued to be made over several centuries.

    The cupola has a fresco painted by Correggio. It took him 290 days to paint it, and it shows Mary rising to Heaven and her Son coming down to meet her.

    A Romanesque carving by Antelemi that was part of the original altar hangs on a wall. Carvings over the outer door depict the months, starting with April, and illustrate the main activity for the month.

    Hours: 9-12:30 and 3-7. Free

    The Bishop's Palace (early 11th Century) is across the square from the Cathedral. Parma was on the pilgrimage route. Plates embedded in the outer walls of the Bishop’s Palace means that pilgrims could eat and rest there.

    (If you got to Rome, you could put crossed keys on your cloak; a palm frond means you made it to Jerusalem.)

    Duomo Cupola Altar Cycle of months over door Bishop's Palace (note the plates!)
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    The Baptistry

    by JessieLang Written Oct 23, 2011

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    The Baptistry, started in 1176 and finished in the early 14th Century, is a pink marble octagon. The marble is from Verona—the dark pink represents blood, and the light pink is for purity. Carvings on the door depict King Herod at a banquet, Christ being washed, and Salome getting John’s head. For about 2 centuries, between 1100 and1300, Baptistries were in a separate building from the church.

    Open every day from 9.00am to 12.30pm and from 3.00pm to 6.45pm.
    Closed during services.

    ENTRANCE: 6,00 euro

    Baptistry Door Door detail
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    Two more steps into the park

    by Manara Updated Sep 24, 2011

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    I wrote that there are several nice little things in this park: there is even a mock-ruin, built in those times when ruins were fashionable among aristocrats who pretended to live in Arcadia. In fact people call this "ruin" Tempio di Arcadia.

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    A walk in the park

    by Manara Updated Sep 24, 2011

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    There are several parks in Parma, but the nicest one is certainly the Parco Ducale (this is the official name, we locals call it "Giardino Pubblico").
    It used to be the private garden of the Dukes, and it became a public park when the Duchy of Parma became part of Italy.
    Along the centuries it has undergone several changes, so it is full of nice things such as statues, and a pond with a small island.
    There is also a cafe, open only in the summer.

    The park in winter
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    San Giovanni

    by Manara Updated Sep 24, 2011

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    A Benedictine abbey dedicated to St John, the Apostle and Evangelist, has been in the heart of the city since the year 980. However the buildings changed a lot during the centuries, and the existing Abbey Church of St John was built at the time of the Renaissance. The monks were a wealthy and cutlurally refined sponsor, so they were prompt to catch the new trend in arts and architecture in the XVI century. In fact, the fresco of the vault, painted by Correggio, was a very innovative piece of work in his time. It represents Jesus flying down from Heaven to meet the dying John and take him up, where the other Apostles are waiting for him.
    Another jewel in this church is anothe painting by Correggio, above the door to the sacresty. It represents John as a young man, near him there is an eagle, because this bird was an emblem of St John.

    The frescoes of the vault The facade
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Parma Things to Do

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