Vicenza Things to Do Tips by BruceDunning Top 5 Page for this destination
Vicenza Things to Do: 132 reviews and 318 photos
Side view of the seats and statues
It was designed by Palladio in 1580 and completed in 1585, and may be a first example of covered indoor theatre. It is made of wood and stucco. Palladio died in 1585, just before the theatre was completed. His son finished the loggia and presentation entry arch. Afterword the scenes inside is by Vicenzo Scammozzi. He made the stage scene into seven hallways, so all had some sort of view. the in depth view of the street scenes behind the stage is supposed to relplicated after Thebes, Greece. These are sole Renaissance structures to have survived ti today and this is oldest and only remaining theatre from the period. The theater was restored in 1930 to its pristine condition you see today, which is fabulous.
This was used as a prison and powder storage arsenal before Palladio got the approval to build the theatre. The outside remnants of this old structure is impressive.
The first play was in 1585. It is now used in Spring and fall only because there is no heat, and the elaborate lighting from the 1585 era is a fire hazard, so is also is not utilized. The below ground alcove is outstanding and leads into the various areas of the seating arena.
This is probably in the top 10 of sites to see in Italy in my opinion.
Address: Viale Matteotti
Directions: Just at the end of Corso Palladio. The Information Center is just to the right of the entrance.
View of church and torre.
It is said Madonna appeared on this hill twice in 1426 & 1428. The first church was built as a promise to Blessed Virgin who was to have rid the city of the plague, which became a sanctuary. The basilica was designed by architect CArlo Borrello in 1688. It was a plan modeled on the Rotundsa. The Madonna was sculpted by Nicolo da Venezia in 1430. Over the years the basilica has been restored, one by Palladio. The three large stair entries have beautiful statues.
The church inside is fabulous and colorful gold hues, and much marble. A stairway constructed in 1595 leads up the hill to a small opening.
Many tour buses park at the lot, and take a quick view of the church. Avoid that during those times, if possible. They also obfuscate the view of the valley below.
Address: Borgo Berga
Directions: Southeast of the city and about 1 mile from train station. Signage is good to the church. Large parking area overlooks the city.
Shopping for upscale-just do it
There are shops and eating places all along the street. It runs about 1 mile in length. Made up of old buildings, but how can you tell what is old? It is said to be comparable to chic shopping avenues in Paris. You determine, but imagine maybe the prices compare. The avenue is nice to stroll along and see all the retail shops and eateries
Directions: Main Via into the center of citta vecchia
Arsenal of cannon in front
War Museum-This great museum holds artifacts form World War I and WWII. You climb the stairs of Villa Guiccioli, a building constructed in 1700's. The villa was a strong defense area during the Italiano struggle for freedom/democracy in 1848, that lasted until 1863. There is a large garden area to walk through and many paths that go back toward the Monte Berico and La Rotunda.
The museum is a fantastic display of the Italiano struggle throughout the war, focusing on WWI and WWII for the armaments; swords, and guns, and bombs. Many pictorals also explain the people and the times of war. Self guided tour is at least one hour, maybe two hours. Ticket is Euro 3, but we got with the Vicenza multi entry tour card.
Address: Viale X Guigno 113
Directions: Going uphill past Monte Berico, continue about 2 miles. Look real hard for faded big concrete monumnet sign over the drive in access on left of road.
Entry range view
Called Villa Almerico Capra, it was designed by Andrea Palladio for wealthy cleric, Paolo Almerico. in 1566. It became more known as a suburb residence, and Almerico moved to the villa to live, not being far from the city walls. The villa never got completed before Palladio died in 1580, and Scamozzi, protege of Palladio, finished it finally in 1591. It is the shape of a cube and styled after the Pantheon. The brothers Capra were the ones to get the villa built. The farms was expansive and the view form the top is great. The central ceilings and frescoes were painted around time of completion. Many allegories to virtues of religious life. Many statues surround the outside facade. No pictures allowed inside, but a small reatil shop at entrance sells minor brochures for heavy price.
The owner lives one site now, and the inside is only open Wednesdays, 10-12 and 3-6 from March-November. The grounds have the same hours, Tuesday-Sunday. The inside is fantastic to see, but my opinion, the whole event is too commercialized and the under a watchful eye of monitors every step of the way. Maybe due to the volume of tourists, nobody seemed friendly. At a cost of 10 Euro for the inside, or 5 Euro grounds only, it is pricey. The grounds are nothing special at all, and color is lacking. Some of the entry also was under renovation. Parking can be a problem during peak season.
Address: Borgo Berga
Directions: Just outside city area, one mile past train station. Follow signs to Monte Berico, then continue about 1/2 mile and turn off , go through village, and continue to villa. Not that easy to find, so look hard for signs.
Piazza Biade VEneto Icon symbols
The combined Piazzi of Signori and Biade make up a large area with the anchor of Basilica Palladian as the main feature. When we were there, the building was covered totally and under restoration. Check first, but either way the visit is a must. The original name was Palazzo della Ragione, and build in the 15th century. That collapsed, and they City Council solicited Palladio to design another building. He came up with that arched effect/loggia look.
Palladio got paid from 1549 until his death in 1580 for his work. The cost and time took a burden on the city. It finally was finished in 1614.
The other side of the street holds a picturesque structure called Monte della Pieta. It was constructed in the 1400's and from end to end a great looking and long building. The monuments on the tall pillar columns are of Venice's St. Marks Lion and the other is of Christ, standing tall.
When we were there, one whole side was under wraps, or renovation, including the clock tower access. Apparently they had restored the other side in recent years.
Address: Piazza Signori
Directions: Just off Corso Palladio, near the end of the Via, at the south
Location of the museo
Called Leoni Montarni GAllery, it is encompassing Russian iconoclasts and Vicenza frescoes. The BAnco Intesa began assembling the collection in mid 1990's and have a great display of Russian religious paintings, Vicenza fresoces by Alberti and statues by Monnari brothers. Overall, it is a good display of the works of the bank, and shows the effort it takes to obtain these items.
The place was built in 1676, and finished in 1694, with many decorations continuing for another 20 years. The entry is an impressive sight, but watch out taking pictures. They are strict on this, even outside. The palazzo passed to the Egido family in 1808, and the CAtholic BAnco obtained. It went to them, and in 1976 and it was restored. Now called Banca Intesa, s owner.
Entry is 3.50 Euro, but the Vicenza card to allow entry into many tour sites is the best deal at 11 Euro. Open 10-12 and 15-17 except Monday
Address: Via FAccio and Contra S. Corona
Directions: Just two blocks off Corso Palladio, up the street from church S. Corona, and by archleological museum
square of Piazza Duomo-Bishop retreat in rear
This was a very nice museum of all the Bishop artifacts. That includes clothing, jewels, religious ceremony icons, and all the other special items received as gifts, or procured. This was build over a Roman administration building, and construction began at same time as first building of the duomo, in 13th century. This was also an aristocirat house called Palezzeto Proti, where Roman crypotporticus was located. One floor down from ground level, you can see the remains of the sewer lines from the original ground level of the Roman buildings.
Address: Piazza Duomo
Brochurees show locations throgh the province
Palladio was part of designing about 63 structures, almost all in the Vento Region, and especially the Vicenza province. The boy was an apprentice stone mason, for which he got the depth for structures and designs. He was around 38 years old when he got his first big break by designing the Basilica Palladiana. He was deceased before it got completed, but the terms of the contract allowed his to get paid on this job for 13 years. The support of Chiercati and Thiene helped him along the path from stonemason to architect. Many structures around the world pattern from his Corinthian columns and loggia.
Palladio produced a four volume catalog of his work with commentary. It was called The Four Books of Architecture, and has been used since by laymen of the design trade to pattern his ideas. Due to his style of architecture, Palladio became famous among the aristocrats and politicians for the design of buildings. As Venice was losing its world domination power from 1400's to 1500's, the last era was to protect and preserve the mainland around the city. For that, it began cultivating land and villa prestige in the 1500's. Along comes Palladio with his style and it took off. Of the designed 63 villas/structures, but only 3/4 were finished before his death. His style, however lives on.
River runs through mush of the city
The old city area-citta vecchia-is all laid out focusing on the Corso Palladio, that past the walls is called Corso S. Felice, a road to Verona and autostrada. The walk inside the old city can be tiresome if yo do not plat out your course. WE tried a long way one time, and after 2 hours of w;lking got to the main street in the old city. WEW! But had 8 hours site seeing to do that day.
the river Bacchigliione meets the Retrone at the junction south of the city, so most of the old part is ringed with water. People walk everywhere, so do as the locals do.
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