Enchanting in every season, Modena offers visitors extraordinary and fascinating beauty, all concentrated in its historic old town.
At the center of Emilia Romagna, Modena is a lovely city in the Po Valley which is located on the Via Emilia, the ancient Roman road of Lepidus, founder of Mutina in 183 BC along with Parro and Crispin. The city was from 1598 to 1859 the capital of the duchy of Este, years during which Modena enjoyed a period of extraordinary splendor and was embellished by numerous religious and civil buildings that conferred a majestic and solemn look.
City on a human scale where the charm of history joins modern creations, Modena is, in the world, synonymous with good cuisine. In this city eating well is an art passed down from generation to generation, able to create greedy dishes that they do not forget their country origin. As typical Modena offers numerous and various delicacies such as Parmigiano-Reggiano, the Traditional Balsamic Vinegar of Modena, the Modena Ham, the Lambrusco and the legendary tortellini in broth made with the filling of pork, ham and Parmesan.
Enchanting in every season, Modena offers visitors extraordinary and fascinating beauty, all concentrated in its historic old town. In particular, the city is famous for the Piazza Grande, the Cathedral and the Ghirlandina Tower, which since 1997 have been declared World Heritage by UNESCO. Piazza Grande is the social and political center of the city and the place of some of the most important and most beloved momuments. The Cathedral, one of the greatest masterpieces of the European Romanesque, was built by architect Lanfranco on the site of the tomb of St. Geminiano, patron of the city, and in it preserves valuable sculptures Wiligelmo and of the Maestri Campionesi. The Ghirlandina Tower, which owes its name to the two wreaths adorning the tip, is almost ninety meters high and is one of the most beautiful bell towers of Italy.
In addition to the cathedral in Modena there are numerous churches, full of masterpieces, among which we find: the Santa Maria della Pomposa, one of the oldest churches in the city, although its current appearance dates from the years 1717-19; the Church of St. Augustine, that Pantheon of Este, in which stands the terra cotta sculpture of the Deposition from the Cross, a masterpiece of Modena Antonio Begarelli; the Church of St. Vincent, awash with frescoes of Sigismund Caula and home of the tombs of the dukes of Este; the Church of San Biagio, which are very interesting frescoes of the dome and apse, mid-seventeenth century, the work of Mattia Preti, a pupil of Guercino; and the Church of St. Bartholomew, a jewel of Baroque art.
Among the civil architecture stands the seventeenth-century Palazzo Ducale, by Bartolomeo Avanzini, today home of the prestigious Military Academy. According to many it is the first Baroque palace in Europe, one in which were for the first time made the canons of the seventeenth century. Among other civil architecture include: the Town Hall, a result of the restructuring of seventeenth and eighteenth centuries many buildings come to life since 1046; the Municipal Theatre Luciano Pavarotti, the largest opera house in the city and one of the most important of Emilia-Romagna; Foro Boario, long over 250 meters, which is one of the finest examples of architecture of its kind; and the Market Albinelli, a picturesque market hall in Art Nouveau style built in the twenties of the twentieth century.
As for the museums, the main ones are collected from the Palace Museum and the most important are: la Galleria Estense, with works by Correggio, Guido Reni, Guercino and Tintoretto; the Estense Library, which preserves the precious Bible of Borso d'Este; the Civic Museums, with works from prehistory to the twentieth century; and the Municipal Historical Archives, full of interesting old documents. Other museums present in Modena worth visiting: the MEF - Enzo Ferrari Museum, as well as the finest automobile museum in the world; the Museum of the figurine, created by the work of collecting Giuseppe Panini, and founder of the famous company Panini; and the Foundation Photography, where you can admire an extraordinary collection of Italian and international artists.