Mantua district guide







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Mantua district guide                               (Back to Mantua main information page)  

The beautiful city of Mantua (Mantova) in the Lombardia region, is located on the shores of three major Italian lakes, Lago Superiore, Lago Inferiore and Lago di Mezzo artificially created from the water of river Mincio, it stands 158km (98 miles) E of Milan, 62km (38 miles) N of Parma, 150km (93 miles) SW of Venice.

Described as one of Lombardy's finest cities, it is in the farthest reaches of the region, making it a logical addition to a trip to Venice or Parma as well as to Milan.

Together with the lowlands, the river and the lakes has helped Mantua to become the strongest fortress in Italy.

The city is well known by the lover of Shakespeare?s tragedy Romeo and Juliet being the setting of Romeo exile and the scene of Verdi's  masterpiece the Rigoletto.

Aldous Huxley described Mantua as the most romantic city in the world, and indeed the city offer to the visitor a unique romantic atmosphere with its interlinking square, arcades and medieval monuments, and meandering river, the Mincio with its moodily romantic lakes. Often shrouded in mist and surrounded by flat plains, Mantua can seem almost melancholy

Indeed, this beautiful city was one of the greatest Renaissance Courts in Europe and home of the wealthy Gonzaga family, who rose from peasant origins to conquer the city in 1328 and ruled benevolently until 1707.

It is an agricultural, industrial, and tourist center. Manufactures include machinery, metals, furniture, and refined petroleum.

In 2005, Mantua was declared by Legambiente the most liveable city in Italy based on quality of life, services, and the level of pollution.

The best times to visit Mantua are during the spring and the fall. The city becomes very crowded during the summer, and fog is an unpleasant part of the cold winter months.

Food attractions include a pike in green sauce, luccio in salsa. A special pasta, tortelli di zucca, tortelli filled with pumpkin or squash, ground amaretti cookies, and mostarda. Since Mantua is in the rice-growing region, you will also find some excellent risotto dishes.

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