A cultural trip to Ravenna should definitely include a visit to the early Christian monuments and mosaics realized among the 5th and the 8th century.
Eight buildings – the Neonian Baptistery, the Basilica of Sant’Apollinare in Classe, the Basilica of Sant’Apollinare Nuovo, the Arian Baptistery, the Mausoleum of Theodoric, the Church of San Vitale, the Archiepiscopal Chapel and the Mausoleum of Galla Placidia – are now inscribed on UNESCO World Heritage List for a unique treasure of mosaic art enriches their interiors and show how religion could influence artistic world.
The Mosaics Of Ravenna
It has been made such an abundant use of this artistic technique, that Ravenna is commonly known as the “city of mosaic”.
The mosaic art in Ravenna have a clear influence from the Byzantine culture and the Christianity. Then great works can be seen at the Basilica di San Vitale, such as an outstanding portrait of Emperor Justinian and a portrait of Jesus Christ in the Basilica di Sant’Apollinare Nuovo.
Moreover, every year you can take part to the night festival Mosaico di Notte – which entertains visitors with guided tours of buildings concealing mosaics and performances of poets and musicians – and to the International Mosaic Festival, which promotes contemporary mosaic works.
The Mausoleum of Galla Placidia
One of the most important examples of Paleochristian architecture in Ravenna is the Mausoleum of Galla Placidia, which honours the memory of the Empress who lived at the time when the city was the Western Roman Empire capital. The monument is situated on the backyard of the Basilica di San Vitale, an important Paleochristian and Byzantine church famous for its great mosaics.
Once you reach Via San Vitale, turn on Via degli Ariani and you will find a simple building made of bricks. At first glance you wouldn’t realize why it is a must-see attraction in Ravenna, but after you enter the small door, you will be surprised by the stunning view of the majestic mosaics decorating the inside walls.
Your attention will be soon caught by the wonderful blue sky mosaic full of thousands stars on the vault. Then you will notice the impressive mosaic of the Good Shepherd framed by an arch. On the other walls you can see other symbols of Christianity as a saint – probably Saint Lawrence who was martyred for its faith – the four gospels and the apostles pictured in mosaics. The chapel has three niches which host the sarcophagi of Constantius III, Valentinian III and a Roman noble man.
Built in 430 AD to be an oratory, Galla Placidia was never buried there but the Masousoleum was rightly entitled to Empress who commissioned the construction. During the reign of Galla Placidia, Ravenna become an important place and often represented religion through art. That is evident in the themes of the mosaics that you can see if you do a cultural and artistic tour in Ravenna.
Many important personalities such as Boccaccio, Gustav Klimt and Cole Porter fell in love with this extraordinary city of Emilia Romagna by the Adriatic Sea.
Come and see why during your holidays in Ravenna – European Cultural Capital to be in 2019!
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My boyfriend and I thoroughly enjoyed the Foodies Tour, which included stops at producers of cheese, balsamic vinegar and cured meat. Paolo was an amazing tour guide – he's extremely knowledgeable, kind and a great communicator. We learned so much! It was really nice to be in a smaller group and most of the producers we visited were small so we were able to get a close up view of the processes. We'd highly recommend Emilia Delizia as this tour was truly authentic and a highlight of our trip!
thank you for the kind review
The tour of the Parmesan Reggiano cheese dairy, Balsamic Vinegar farm, the Parma ham and lunch at the organic vineyard was thoroughly enjoyed by our family of 4. Paolo was a gracious and knowledgeable host for the day and provided us with insights to the production of the cheese and balsamic vinegar which was enhanced due to his chemistry background. We would thoroughly recommend this tour to those interested in the specialities produced in the Modena region.
We had a wonderful tour, best part about visiting the Modena region!
The tour was perfect. I think Paolo would be a splendid ambassador for Italy in the EU. He knows how excellent Italian food and eating together can solve many major problems, and can stop aggressive behavior. Not the hunt for more money, but the well being of family and friends counts. Paolo shows us the products of ages of civilization and he did this like an artist. So after the tour we really love Italia more and we'll come back. We will call you Paolo, Thanks!
Following two tours with your guides this week I would like to express my thanks for some wonderful experiences.
Monday we did the tour of cheese making, balsamic and Salami which was very good and the guide Paolo was very knowledgeable.
The truffle hunt tour today was absolutely amazing, the guide Stefano is pure gold and the tour was built with much thought. Our best experience so far, by far.
Looking forward to more tours and fun next time we are in Italy.
The group (and me) was VERY satisfied. We really enjoyed the Parmegiano Regiano which was interesting and we got to buy some delicate and cheap cheese, the same with the balsamico. The Ferrari driving was off course an experience for life. The Winery lunch felt very genuine and the people there was really welcoming and nice people. The genuine feeling there was however the big plus for us.
Paolo was excellent as our guide. He also felt very genuine. He did not talk just for the sake of talking, but when he had something to say he did it in a respectful and nice way. Everyone in the group really liked him.
I wanted to let you know what a great day we had this past Friday on our tour with Jacamo. (Probably not spelling it right) He was very nice and explained everything to us. It sure gives you a new appreciation when you are slicing cheese. 🙂 Our tour ended with him taking us to the vineyard for a tour and lunch and there, Paolo, the owner could not have been more nicer. It was a perfect ending.
Please let Jacamo know what a great job he did and how much we really appreciated it and his knowledge
The website is well structured and we received a prompt answer to all questions. Gabriele supported us with all information we needed and the organization before the trip was excellent.
We had an air conditioned van, which was very relaxing through the whole tour. The first stop was the parmigiano production, which was very impressive and interesting. We could learn and especially see all the different steps and even taste the various aged parmigiano. The second step was the balsamic vinegar tasting. Finally the meat part was interesting in the museum but we hoped that we also could see more about the production and their work, but the tasting was delicious. In overall we had a very informative and well accommodated half day with our guide
It was great experience! We visited Parmesan cheese production, Balsamic vinegar farm, Ham museum and Farmer's lunch. Our guide gave us a detailed explanation, we were very satisfied. An excellent tour for a reasonable price, highly recommended.
Nous sommes une famille de cinq et nous avons adoré notre expérience. Les trois endroits étaient choisis judicieusement. Notre guide était très généreuse et super gentille. Nous recommandons ce tour ( parmesan, vinaigre balsamique et jambon de parme).