Enjoy the cycling on the back roads and visit Villa Ghirardina
Mantua, a sightseeing tour
Travelling on a hot air balloon over Mantua
Italia Slow Tour in Mantua, looking for the ducal palaces of the Gonzaga Family.
First, we travel suspended from a hot air balloon to get an aerial view of Mantua. Its monuments, the castle of San Giorgio and the Ducal Palace; the three lakes: the lower, the middle and the upper; the patches of lotus flowers, found only here and in Japan…
And after landing, the slow tour across Mantua continues by bike.
Video Full Text: “Accidental” Gonzagas
A slow tour of the ducal palaces of the Gonzagas, in the province of Mantua begins here.
We’re travelling suspended from a hot air balloon, just a stone’s throw from where I live.
In order to get an aerial view of Mantua.
You can see the layout of the whole city from up here.
That’s the central part, rich in monuments.
The castle of San Giorgio and the Ducal Palace, the centre of power.
The city was built around it.
Taking a flight in a hot air balloon is wondrous.
A bubble of hot air that decides where to take us.
Here are the three lakes: the lower, the middle and the upper.
Those patches of green are lotus flowers, found only here and in Japan.
Shall we land in this field then?
Landing is the trickiest moment.
Flying in a hot air balloon is the slowest form of travelling there is.
Even the landing needs to be slow though.
Ready to land!
All my worrying has been in vain!
We have landed without ruining the farmer’s alfalfa grass.
I have a momentary breakdown.
The slow tour continues on two wheels.
Visit Mantua: helpful hints
Italian name: Mantova
There is no airport in Mantua but you can come easily from Milan or Bologna.
Milan: from Malpensa Airport reach Milan Central Station by train or by bus (the Malpensa Express train leaves every 30 minutes, it takes 50 minutes and costs 13€. The Malpensa shuttle bus leaves every 20 minutes, it takes 60/70 minutes and costs 10€). At Milan Central Station, look for the train to Mantua, it costs 11,5€ and it takes 1,5 hours.
Bologna: from Bologna Airport reach Bologna Central Station by bus (rides every 15 minutes). It takes 30 minutes and costs 6,5€. From the Central Station you can choose between the train and the bus: with Trenitalia company there is a combination of two trains, taking 1,5 hours at all for 8,95€. With Flixbus service you pay 4,99€ and it takes 1,25 hours.
You can visit Mantua on walk, or you can choose between bus or bike. APAM manages the local bus service. The single ticket costs 1,4€ and it lasts 75 minutes. Otherwise you can choose the bike and pay 0,69€ for a 20 minutes ride.
What to do
Mantua is a wonderful art city surrounded by lakes. It is in Lombardy region, Northern Italy. The city is famous for many stunning architectural treasures, such as Palazzo Ducale made by the Gonzaga family, or Palazzo Te. Nearby don’t miss the Olympic Theatre of Sabbioneta, the first designed just for entertainment in 1500.
Every year in September takes place here one of the most important Book Fair in Italy, Festivaletteratura.
For more tips, watch Italia Slow Tour web serie about Mantua.