Favorite thing: Padova is an old university town and wandering around the streets near here there were interesting architectural details to catch your eye - like these arched windows and balcony on Palazzo Jacur on Via Francesco.
Be aware, that in Italy, the doors to shops and restaurants open 'inward' as opposed to opening 'outwards' as we are used to in North America.
It certainly makes it easier to open the door for the fair sex as you are leaving a shop, but coming in poses a problem.
We've been here over a year, and still make the door slam and the windows shake when we attempt to open the door.
In North America it is a fire regulation which is strictly enforced, the reason is that doors should open 'outwards' in order to prevent a pile up at an exit in case of fire. Makes sense, whereas here, if the door were to open 'outward', it could strike the car that is parked on the sidewalk.
Each case has its merits.
Fondest memory: This area of Padova was my favourite with the reflctions of the statues and buildings in the canals. This had been a former site for fairs and entertainments and was reclaimed in 1775 by Domenico Cerato, by order of Andrea Memmo. The "square" is very picturesque with its canal crossed by four bridges and lined by 78 statues of famous men.
Monument of Gattamelata is situated in the north-west corner of the square, right in front of Basilica di San Antonio
Fondest memory: Donatello's masterpiece; the bronze equestrian monument to Erasmo de Narni, known as the Gattamelata, commander in chief of the armies of the Venetian Republic.
Favorite thing: During the day it is used as an big open market place and looks very ugly, therefore I suggest you to visit this place in the afternoon. The view at the eastern part of Piazza dei Signori where, right opposite to the Palazzo del Capitano and next to Palazzo della Ragione, stands this defending (?) tower.
Basilica of St. Anthony (the Church of the Saint),was built in 1232 as a shelter of "Il Santo's" remains. St. Anthony (Il Santo) was born in Lisbon and lived in Padova for a comparatively short time xet the city chose him for its Patron Saint.
Fondest memory: The church of Il Santo has gradually become the most important religious and artistic focal point in Padova and one of the most celebrated buildings in the world.
Favorite thing: The Towns Loggia della Gran Guardia (1496-1553) is situated on Piazza dei Signori, next to the Palazzo del Capitano. It housed the Council of Nobles of the city, nowadays it is used as an conference centre.
For a funny slant on Life in Italy, please click on to the following site. I have never laughed so loud or so long as I did watching this clip.
Please note I take no credit for the production, but I wish I had this talent.
Basilica of St. Anthony...you can't wear shorts.
PLUS, the market squares:
Piazza Erbe for a selection of odds and ends, clothing, handbags, knick nacks etc., etc.
Piazza Frutta for the freshest assortment of fruits and vegetables, spices, and candy. If you're here in the fall, look for freshly roasted chestnuts, and buy the largest bag they offer, or you'll just have to backtrack to purchase more later. (wonderful hot)
Beneath the Palazzo della Ragione, you'll find two aisles of fish mongers, cheese venders, and delicatessens (salumerie). Fresh, fresh, fresh.
Fondest memory: The people. Padova has very nice, warm, and caring people. This is a generalization of course, but we have found that shopkeepers try very hard to accomodate, bus drivers always lend a hand when questions arise, and the customer service people at the train station are outstanding.
Italian people want to learn English, therefore will attempt to speak to you in English whenever possible. I am embarrassed when I compare my feeble linguistic skills to theirs.
Favorite thing: This is something you would typically see on the walls and architecture at the University of Padova. Very detailed and fine carvings and sculptures. Once again, you feel you are more like at a museum than at a university. In fact, this is one of the oldest universities in Italy.
Fondest memory: The university in Padova is also a must-see activity. The university is very ancient. Its architecture is magnificent. There are a lot of sculptures and carvings on the walls. And you won't feel that you're at a university; you feel more like being at a museum. There are no actual "doors" to the university. It's embedded within shopping and entertainment in downtown Padova.
Fondest memory: More arch-like structures can be found in the courtyards of the Basilica Di Sant' Antonio. The yards are pretty huge and there's lots of nice carvings and sculptures embedded in the architecture. The basilica and the area surrounding it is a must-see in Padova.
Fondest memory: The Basilica Di Sant' Antonio is a magnificent cathedral. It is pretty huge, and the design of the basilica contains a lot of arch-like structures. Inside the basilica it is pretty awesome as well. I would say this basilica is comparable to the one in Venice.
There are some cities, like Venice that - being located on the sea - live on water. No one is surprised by it. Padova - by contrast - came as a surprise: I wasn't expecting so many rivers and canals, actually I wasn't expecting any at all. Had I not been pushed for time I would have taken a boat cruise through to city and out to the surrounding countryside
Fondest memory: There are two main rivers: the Brenta in the north and the fiume Bacchiglione in the south. These rivers are linked together by a series of canals: some are clean and charming, opthers are smelly and dirty. In the middle ages that were over 150 of them
Originally we were heading for Vercelli - but then the train stopped in Padova and well, we decided we might as well visit it. At the train station - at the chocolate shop - while I was discussing "sweets" my travel partner decided to find out what was worth seeing. The answer we got was a park (Prato della Valle) and a church (San't Antonio)
Fondest memory: Thinking padova was easy to navigate we started looking for the park - and we found one: after taking several photos we discoered it was the local drug addicts' park - not the one we were looking for. Then we moved on to the church: my partner thought he saw it in the distance and started telling me wonderful stories about San't Antonio: he was obviously making it up as we walked, since the church turned out to be the Chiesa del Carmine - which is just one of the churches of Padova