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The beauty of Modena, Italy

Have you heard of Modena, gorgeous site in Italy?

By Anna Purpurpurpur

Modena, a lovely town in Emilia Romagna in Italy, is not a very popular destination. However, we visited it a few years ago and really loved it – and now, please let me share our trip with you!

Gorgeous Piazza Grande is the first site you should be heading to. It’s the city’s main square, which was declared a UNESCO World Heritage in 1997. It dates back to the 12th century when it was known as Piazza del Duomo and was widened by adding the adjacent squares, acquiring the name ‘Grande’ in the 17th century. The Town Hall, Modena Cathedral, and 86-metre tall Ghirlandina tower dating back to the 12th century are all located here!

The 12th-century Modena Cathedral, dedicated to Saint Geminian, Modena’s patron saint, is an unmissable attraction, with the two lions and stone knots welcoming you at the entrance. Inside the building, you can find the old bucket referring to La Secchia rapita, The kidnapped bucket, the 17th-century poem by Alessandro Tassoni, who was from Modena. You can also visit the Musei del Duomo with the treasured pieces from the cathedral.

Check out the Palazzo Ducale, the residence of the House of Este (known as Estense), and erected in 1634 by Francesco I d’Este – it’s now used as the Italian Military Academy and the Military Museum. However, the Baroque building still looks astonishing. It’s located on the Piazza Roma, and you can also spot the monument to Ciro Menotti by Cesare Sighinolfi, the prominent figure of the Italian Risorgimento who was executed in Modena.

Palazzo dei Musei on Largo Porta Sant’Agostino is another must-visit in Modena – and yes, it’s literally a whole palace complex dating to the 18th century filled with different museums! Don’t miss the Galleria Estense located on the top floor of the Palazzo, as you’ll find Correggio, Bernini, El Greco, Velázquez, Veronese and many other masters there, as well as sculptures, numismatics! The core of the museum was the collection of the House of Este. 

Did you know that Luciano Pavarotti, a fantastic Italian tenor, was born and died here, too? Enzo Ferrari, the founder of the Ferrari brand and motor racing driver himself, was born  (and died here, too) in Modena! And if you have time, you can also visit the villa-turned-museum of Pavarotti or Enzo Ferrari Museum.

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