Our day trip in Ferrara
A sightseeing tour during the annual Buskers Festival
Silvia & Vincent.
When we decided to go to Ferrara we had no expectation. We just wanted to have a walk in a city we have never seen. We surely didn’t expect we would like it so much!
We went there by train from Bologna in just 30 minutes. There was no need for public transport, in 15 minutes we were already in the city centre! The first thing we saw was the Estense castle, the symbol of the city. It is something you do not usually see in a city centre. There is this huge beautiful castle surrounded by a moat, amazing! We could walk through it and took many pictures. If you want to visit it, make sure you have time (we did not) because it’s very big.
Around the castle, there are multiple squares. We were lucky we were there on the first day of the Buskers Festival, the event that gathers international street artists and musicians in Ferrara. First in the Piazzetta del Castello, and then everywhere around it, there were artists playing their instruments and singing, making soap bubbles, entertaining children and adults.
Ferrara is very beautiful for its squares and buildings. In Piazza Savonarola, we admired the statue of the famous friar Savonarola, with the castle in the background. A little further on, there is the beautiful City Hall with its yard and the so-called Scalone d’Onore (staircase of honour). For sure, we couldn’t avoid to enter the other symbol of the city, the majestic Cathedral of Ferrara, dedicated to Saint George, the patron saint of the city. Its façade is guarded by four lion statues and is a real piece of art. Moreover, once we entered we realised that it may seem small from the outside but in fact is huge. Finally, behind the corner, we noticed the Renaissance bell tower and the amazing loggia that now hosts shops, on the west side of the church.
We wandered around Piazza Trento e Trieste, getting amazed by the courtyard of the Museum of the Cathedral and realizing that Ferrara is a city of cyclists, which is not so typically Italian. From there, we just followed one of the narrow streets and wandering. It’s plenty of shops, but, above all, bars and restaurants that offer the typical delicious food of the Emilia Romagna region. From one of those busy streets we ended up in Via delle Volte, the most beautiful street we could find. The buildings here shaped multiple vaults and the effect is amazing: we were suddenly back to the middle Ages.
Finally, since it is not so far from the city centre, we walked to Palazzo dei Diamanti, the Renaissance palace whose walls look like hundreds of diamonds. The palace hosts the national gallery and temporary exhibitions. After that, we ended our cultural tour in the Piazza Ariostea, at the centre of which stands the statue of Ludovico Ariosto, the famous poet and author of Orlando Furioso. Since it was such a hot day, we took a delicious ice cream and we enjoyed it in the park around the statue. It is here where at the end of May the Palio of Ferrara takes place.
It goes without saying that we spent the rest of the evening enjoying the buskers and the food stalls near the Estense castle…
Main pic courtesy of Flickr User Ho visto nina volare