Overshadowed by its famous neighbours Venice and Verona, Padua (or Parova as the local say) is a hidden gem. You will unravel amazing treasures waiting to be discovered.
Only 20 minutes away from Venice by train, Padua is a breath of fresh air away from the crowds gravitating around Saint Mark’s Square or Juliette’s House. It has the vibrancy and ascetics of its Venetian sibling without the crowds.
The city’s narrow cobblestone streets, colorful facades and abundance of cultural and eco-friendly options makes Padua an idea place for mindful and conscious travelers to explore. And did we mention that this place is virtually crowd-free?
It has an authentic Italian flair. The city has the air of a laid-back Italian town, full of local life and very few visits.
It is full of culture & heritage. It boasts Venetian architecture, a picturesque pedestrian centre as well as a rich collection of palazzos, museums, chapels, basilicas and Italian-style street art.
It is conscious of its environmental impact. Water fountains, walking zones, bike rentals, even complimentary transport cards, plus a selection of locally sourced cuisine and zero waste options.
This family run boutique guesthouse is a real hidden gem with a rich history. It offers spectacular views over the domes of Padua. With its lush gardens it is the perfect retreat after a busy day exploring the city. The places products are sources locally and it even has a small vegetable garden. Breakfast is freshly prepared, local and virtually wasteless and all of the bathroom products are eco-friendly. Last by not least it offers bicycles to its guests.
Massimago is also a wine producer. So if area wine lovers, you may just be in for a treat.
There are over 20 drinking water fountains scattered around Padua. Fontanella.org provides a complete list and locations. So bring your water bottle and stay hydrated as it can get really hot in the summer months.
Padua is full of hidden alleys and picturesque piazzas. However our favorite is Sotto il Salone. Padua’s 800 year old covered market is the jewel of local culture and of course, food. The market is the best place to feel the city’s vibes and blend in with the local community. 50 small shops sell artisanal cheeses, handmade pasta, bread and various delicacies from the Veneto region and other Italian regions.
Paduans have embraced greener mobility and is working hard to cut its carbon emissions. It is a common sight to see locals strolling leisurely or whizzing around on bicycles. The city boast a pictures and extensive network of pedestrian areas. It also has several bike-rental points and a modern network of completely silent trams.
Considering the concentration of sights and the facility to move around Padua the best options are to walk or cycle. There are several bike rental shops in the city but the easiest may be just to pick a bike from Good Bike Padua. Also ask at the place where you are staying, they might have some bikes to lend or rent, like Massimago.
If you are more adventurous you can also go on a gondola style boat trip along the canals of Padua and see some of amazing Venetian Palazzos.