Often overshadowed by its illustrious but overcrowded neighbour, Venice, Padova is a wonderful holiday destination in its own right. A vibrant student town, Padova has that typically laid-back northern Italian attitude to life, and is home to many celebrated works of Gothic art and splendid medieval architecture which makes it the perfect base for a holiday in Veneto.
Built in the 13th and 14th centuries, the colossal Basilica of St Anthony is an arresting blend of architectural styles including Romanesque, Byzantine and Gothic. Arguably the top attraction for any holiday in Padova, the Basilica contains the Tomb of St Antony, a revered religious shrine that has been visited by innumerable pilgrims over the centuries. The dramatic Basilica features two tall towers, a vast conical dome and seven lesser domes. The interior and adjacent Museo Antoniano contains numerous impressive pieces of art, including work by the legendary Donatello.
Padova’s most famous contribution to the art world is Giotto’s magnificent frescoes that adorn the interior of the Scrovegni Chapel, and are considered a significant landmark in the evolution of Western painting. The frescoes are regarded as Giotto’s first masterpiece, and depict various narratives through striking religious iconography including the ‘Life of Christ’.
Padova’s beautiful botanical gardens date back 1545, and provide a wonderful tranquil retreat from the hustle bustle of everyday life. Regarded to be the oldest botanical gardens in the world, its lasting influences on the scientific disciplines of medicine, botany and chemistry are incredible. The gardens have been designated a UNESCO World Heritage site, and contain plants from all over the world. Any holiday in Padova would be enriched by a visiting these gardens.
Padova is home to numerous outstanding museums. The most highly regarded are the Archaeological Museum and the Museum of Medieval and Modern Art. The former’s vast collection dates back to pre-Roman times, whilst the latter has over 3,000 paintings chartering the rise of Venetian art from its beginning in the 14th century up to the 20th century.
Padova serves as the perfect base from which to explore the many famous attractions of the magnificent city of Venice. The first port of call in Venice is the iconic St Mark’s Square, home to the Basilica di San Marco, the most sumptuous of its kind in Europe, as well as the Campanile di San Marco, from which spectacular views of the city can be enjoyed. The Bridge of Sighs, where it is said if two lovers kiss they will find eternal happiness, is also highly recommended, whilst no city break to Venice would be complete without taking a gondola down the Grand Canal.
Alternatively, look at holidays to Treviso for a nearby base to Venice.
Book an excellent value holiday with brand you can trust, and enjoy a memorable holiday to Italy! With easyJet holidays’ flexible plans and great value deals you are guaranteed to have a fantastic holiday in Padova!