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Brescia. The things you don't expect to find

Friday, 01 October 2021 15:05

Brescia is a modern and vibrant, trendy and contemporary city to be savoured at a leisurely pace. It is an unusual city break for anyone looking for an authentic and stimulating destination off the beaten tourist track. It is also an open-air museum to be discovered as you stroll through its piazzas and past palaces and elegant arcades that blend history with contemporary  art. Shopaholics will love the smart boutiques, craft shops and concept stores, art galleries and antique dealers.  And foodies will delight in sipping cocktails, relaxing to live music in trendy clubs, and gourmet moments in restaurants with cutting-edge cuisine. The city’s modern suburbs are as fascinating as its historic centre and in 2023 Brescia - together with Bergamo – will be the Italian Capital of Culture. Brescia: a city to be experienced and discovered.

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Three historic squares in the heart of the old city

The tour begins with the three historic squares around which the largely pedestrian historic center is divided: the medieval Piazza Paolo VI - named after Giovanni Battista Montini, the Pope who was born in Brescia - with the Broletto, the New Cathedral and the Rotonda (the ancient Romanesque cathedral on a round plan that incorporates the lines of the Holy Sepulchre in Jerusalem), the Renaissance Piazza della Loggia with the majestic palace of the same name, the arcades and the Clock Tower, and Piazza Vittoria with its candid and rigorous architecture, symbol of the Age of Reason. Here you can linger in the bars with outdoor terraces and enjoy a Pirlo (the Brescia aperitif par excellence) or relax in one of the elegant restaurants and enjoy the local cuisine or a creative contemporary menu.

The Castle is the largest city vineyard in Europe

From the historic center a beautiful walk brings you up to the Castle, one of the largest fortified complexes in Europe, which was awarded 3rd place in the FAI’s 2021 Luogo del Cuore Awards. Secret and underground walkways lead through gardens and past towers and bastions, that fascinate adults and children. In the keep you can visit the Luigi Marzoli Museum of Ancient Weapons, one of the most important in Europe. From its ramparts there are incomparable views over the city. The Castle is perched on the Cidneo Hill, with the urban Pusterla vineyard on 3.4 hectares, the largest urban vineyard in Europe.

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