Mantua, Renaissance Home of the Gonzagas

Mantua, Renaissance Home of the Gonzagas, Mantova, Italy (B)

Coming into Mantua from the north, the first thing you notice is the three artificial lakes that surround the city. Today they are a pleasure ground, with boat trips, lakeside walks and picnic areas. But they were originally constructed for a quite different purpose: defence. As was common in medieval Italy, Mantua was controlled by one powerful family for centuries. And although the Gonzaga dynasty no longer rules the city, their influence remains.

The whole of the historic centre of Mantua is a UNESCO World Heritage Site. This is because of its connection with the Gonzaga family. They were important patrons of the arts who commissioned many of the palazzi and other important buildings in the city. These were built in classic Renaissance style and filled with artworks by famous artists of the time.

This is a perfectly formed Renaissance city, with archways, piazzas and arcades giving welcome shelter from the sun. We walked over the the cobbled streets to Piazza Sordello where crowds were shopping at the weekly market. As we went we stopped to look at the elegant buildings. These range from churches to palazzi, to the Torre dell’Orologio, a 14th century tower with an astrological clock. ...... (follow the instructions below for accessing the rest of this article).
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Guide Name: Mantua, Renaissance Home of the Gonzagas
Guide Location: Italy » Mantova
Guide Type: Self-guided Walking Tour (Article (B))
Author: Karen Warren
Read it on Author's Website:
Sight(s) Featured in This Guide:
  • Palazzo Ducale
  • Torre dell'Orologio
  • Piazza Sordello
  • Piazza Lega Lombarda