Emilia Romagna  Traditional Balsamic Vinegar of Modena since 1850

Bologna, Maranello, Modena, Parma, Piacenza, Ravenna

Day 1 Piacenza – Parma 

Arrival in Piacenza, the entrance to Emilia, rich in treasures and history. ”Piacenza is a land of passage” wrote Leonardo Da Vinci in the Codex Atlanticus. Because of its position, at the crossroads between four regions, founded on the banks of the river Po and enclosed in the embrace of the hills and mountains of the Apennines. Colonia Romana, later an important medieval center, has always been an ideal stopover for princes and pilgrims, Crusaders and Templars, merchants and artists who left their mark here. Guided tour featuring the Piazza del Duomo and Piazza dei Cavalli, symbol of the city with the two equestrian statues by Mochi in the background of the Palazzo Gotico, the Romanesque Basilica di Sant’Antonino, a point of pilgrimage on the Via Francigena, with the Porta del Paradiso, the church of Santa Maria di Campagna and the Basilica di San Savino with its 12th century mosaics depicting the cycle of months, are well worth a visit. The Teatro Municipale, dedicated to Verdi, looks like a true little “Scala”. The wonderful complex of Palazzo Farnese, which includes the Civic Museums of Palazzo Farnese with the Etruscans’ liver and Botticelli’s Tondo, and the Alberoni Gallery with Antonello da Messina’s Ecce Homo are worth a visit. Piacenza is a real ”Food Valley”, among salami, cheeses, and wines it can boast the highest concentration of D.O.P. and D.O.C. (Denominations of Protected and Controlled Origin) in Italy. Authentic enogastronomic excellences to enjoy such as “coppa”, salami and bacon; “pisaréi e fasö”, “anolini” and “tortelli con la coda”, “bomba di riso” and “piccula ad cavall”. All this accompanied rigorously by wines from Piacenza, among which the red Gutturnio stands out. After lunch departure for Parma, one of the main junctions of the ancient Via Emilia. Guided tour of the city famous for Parmigiano cheese and prosciutto, the Romanesque buildings, including the Cathedral with its frescoes and the Baptistery in pink marble, the Teatro Regio. The Galleria Nazionale, inside the imposing Palazzo della Pilotta, exhibits artworks by the painters Correggio and Canaletto.

Tasting at the prosciutto factory of Langhirano, a small town known to produce prosciutto. Sweet and tasty, the slice, neither thin nor thick. It is obtained from swine fattened with natural and traditional systems for generations to obtain specially designed shapes and sizes. As a result, it is distinguished from others by its rounded shape called “chicken leg”. The unique climatic conditions, the fresh air of the valley, the patient maturing period of 14/18 months, the long processing phases with the skill of master savorers make the prosciutto without preservatives and coloring agents and with a low cholesterol content: recommended for the development of children, adolescents and the elderly, it is easily digestible and with a high protein content, suitable for that type of consumer who is attentive to his diet, safe and healthy.

Dinner and overnight in a hotel.

 Day 2 Maranello – Modena – Bologna
Departure for Modena. UNESCO has recognized the universal value of its treasures by declaring the Cathedral, Piazza Grande and the Ghirlandina Tower World Heritage Site.
City tour: the Cathedral, one of the greatest masterpieces of the European Romanesque. The Palazzo Comunale, whose construction has undergone several phases since the Middle Ages. And not far from the Ghirlandina, the seventeenth-century Palazzo Ducale, now home to the prestigious Military Academy.  The city is enriched by the beautiful MEF-Museum Enzo Ferrari, the museum complex dedicated to Enzo Ferrari and motor racing features the Casa Natale and the exhibition gallery. In the prestigious Palazzo Santa Margherita, there is also the Museum of the Figurine; borne from the passionate collection of Giuseppe Panini. Transfer to Maranello, visit to the Ferrari Museum, the company museum of the famous car manufacturer founded in 1947.
After that, visit and tasting at vinegar factory, producer of Traditional Balsamic Vinegar of Modena since 1850.  After lunch departure for Bologna, city of art, known for its almost 25 Miles of arcades, the longest in the world. Also known as the ‘’Dotta’’ (“Academic”), because of its ancient University, and the “Grassa” (“Fat”) because of its gastronomy, the city boasts the title “UNESCO Creative City of Music” and has one of the largest and best preserved medieval historical centers in Europe, full of clubs, taverns, theaters and shops. Home to great artists such as Giorgio Morandi, Guido Reni, the Carracci, Guercino, Aspertini, its charm has also captured illustrious figures such as Mozart, Carducci, Dante, Rossini and the Nobel Prize in Physics, Guglielmo Marconi.   Visit of the city with Piazza Maggiore where medieval palaces, witnesses of the lively public life and intense economic activity, are perfectly combined with modernity, preserving their ancient charm. Palazzo D’Accursio, seat of the municipality, in which we find the modern Salaborsa multimedia library in Art Nouveau style and the Roman archaeological excavations visible from a modern glass floor. Some of the symbols of Bologna are the Neptune Fountain by Giambologna and the medieval towers. Among them, the Two Towers, the Asinelli Tower (322 Feet) and its “twin” Garisenda (157 feet, mentioned in Dante’s Inferno) rise majestically.  The Alma Mater Studiorum is the oldest university in the west. Along the ancient streets and the endless arcades, an unexpected sight are the canals dating back to the 12th century, which can also be visited in the underground passageways. 

Dinner and overnight in hotel.

Specialities: Bologna is synonymous with Mortadella, “ragù alla Bolognese”, tortellini, lasagne, tagliatelle, bollito. Equally well known are the DOC wines of the Colli Bolognesi, including the typical Pignoletto.

Day 3 Ravenna – Ferrara 
Departure to Ravenna, where you can breathe art, history, and culture. Recognized all over the world for its historical and artistic beauties, the city preserves the richest heritage of mosaics dating back between the 5th and 6th century A.D. inside its wonderful early Christian and Byzantine religious buildings, declared World Heritage by UNESCO.
The majestic gold of the Basilica of San Vitale; the small Mausoleum of Galla Placidia where the cobalt blue tiles embrace a dome of golden stars ending with Sant’Apollinare Nuovo. The city has been visited by famous visitors such as Lord Byron, Oscar Wilde, Sigmund Freud, and Gustav Klimt.  After lunch, departure for Ferrara. The Este family ran it for three centuries and gave it the appearance it still retains today: a unique urban design that harmoniously blends the Middle Ages and Renaissance and makes it the first modern city in Europe. Precisely because of this characteristic, it has been recognized by UNESCO as a World Heritage Site by Humanity. Guided tour among the wonders of the city, the great paintings of the fifteenth and sixteenth century at Palazzo dei Diamanti. Worth visiting is Palazzo Schifanoia with its splendid Salone dei Mesi frescoed in the 15th century by the painters of the Officina Ferrarese; the Castello Estense, the ancient residence of the Dukes of Este; the harmonious Romanesque-Gothic Cathedral and its Museum with works of great value. The Church of Santa Maria in Vado, a pilgrimage destination following the Eucharistic miracle that took place here in the 12th century.

Culinary delights: the famous “coppia”, the tasty Ferrara bread with its elaborate shape, awarded the PGI mark; the very popular “cappellacci”, tortelli stuffed with pumpkin and parmesan cheese and the “pasticcio di maccheroni”, a true synthesis of courtly traditions; an unusual mixture of pork meat, is the “salama da sugo”. Finally, the “pampepato”, a gingerbread covered with a crust of melted chocolate.                       

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