South of Lake Garda lies the medieval pearl of Mantua. The historic centre of the city has been carefully preserved and the Dukes' impressive palace and beautiful cathedral are well worth a visit. There is also a lively market once a week.
Mozart made his debut in Mantua at the age of 13, while the city was under Austrian rule. Mantova was also the place where Pavarotti made his debut. Verdi's opera Rigoletti is set in the city, and Rigoletto's house is proudly displayed here.
Mantova offers a wonderful atmosphere, both inside the medieval city walls and outside on the green spaces of the three lakes that surround Mantova. Mantova's history dates back to Etruscan times. In the Middle Ages, the city flourished under the rule of the Gonzaga ducal family, who ruled the city from the 14th century to the 17th century. During this time the buildings were created that today characterise Mantova's cityscape. The heart of the city is Piazza Sordello with the Cathedral on the north side and the Palace on the east side consisting of two buildings, Magna Domus and Palazzo del Capitano.
The Ducal Palace with the "Camera degli Sposi" was painted by Andrea Mantegna between 1465 and 1474.
Mantova is located on the Mincio River, which leaves the lake at Peschiera del Garda. Take a nice bike ride along the river and enjoy the good bike paths and the beautiful views.
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