RAVENNA

“…in the solitude
of the pine forest, and the silent shore
which bounds Ravenna’s immemorial wood,
rooted where once the Adrian wave flow’d o’er
to where the last Caesarean fortress stood,
evergreen forest…”

Lord Byron

Ravenna Heritage of Humanity

HALF DAY TOUR (3 hours max)

WITH A COMBINED TICKET THAT COSTS € 8,50* PER PERSON

(*Reduced fee valid for all groups guided by our staff)

(This is an all-inclusive ticket for all the monuments of the itinerary)

This itinerary will take you to the discovery of the most famous and interesting monuments of the town: universally known for the splendour of its mosaics, our monuments make Ravenna a special place, unique in the world.

A fascinating journey through time where you can admire the best preserved Italian works of art dating back to the early Christian and Byzantine Era.

The BASILICA OF S. VITALE, the highest expression of early Christian art and architecture; the MAUSOLEUM OF GALLA PLACIDIA, a kind of “magic casket” which contains in its small perfect structure the V century mosaics, considered the most beautiful in the world; the CATHEDRAL BAPTISTERY, an octagonal prism built at the beginning of the V century when Ravenna became capital of the Western Roman Empire; the BASILICA OF SANT’APOLLINARE NUOVO, built by the King Theodoric for the Arian cult as a Palatine Chapel, which preserves the largest wall mosaics that have survived from ancient times.

From March 1st till June 15th, for the Mausoleum of Galla Placidia extra charge of € 2,00 for combined ticket. Booking for groups is compulsory. Booking service allowing immediate access in Mausoleum of Galla Placidia at the time allocated. Book now

 

Photo credit: Wiki Loves Monuments 2016 – Paolo Forconi

 

FULL DAY TOUR (5 hours max)

For an in-depth visit of Ravenna and a closer look at the glass manufacture and mosaic art, you can choose to stay a bit longer and complete the tour with the visit of the DOMUS OF STONE CARPETS – the new archaeological jewel of Ravenna with its floor mosaics dating back to the IV-VI centuries a.C. – and the BASILICA OF SANT’APOLLINARE IN CLASSE, with its magnificent Byzantine mosaic decorations.

Domus of Stone Carpets: € 3,00 per person (reduced fee valid for all groups guided by our staff).  

Basilica of S. Apollinare in Classe: adults € 5,00; under 18 free access. Free entrance the first Sunday of each Month.


Special tour for students

ITINERARY WITH FREE ENTRANCE TICKETS

(For any kind of school)

This tour offers the possibility to enter the free monuments of Ravenna, combining the visit of some of the most relevant Early-Christian and Theodorician monuments – with their beautiful mosaic decorations – and the possibility to pay homage to Dante Alighieri, the finest Italian poet who died here in September 1321. The tour includes the Arian Baptistery, the Mausoleum of Theodoric, Dante’s Tomb and the Church of St. Francesco. This last one is famous for the magical atmosphere of its crypt, covered with floor mosaics and constantly flooded by water, due to the geo-morphological phenomenon of subsidence. The tour ends with the magnificent Basilica of Sant’Apollinare in Classe.


An English Lord in Ravenna

Don’t  be surprised if walking along the city of Ravenna you find many references to the English  Romantic Poet;  the Hotel Byron,  The Cafè Byron and San Francesco square, once Piazza Byron; here you can read a memorial plaque dedicated to the poet. Byron spent three years in this city from June 1819 to October1821: the reason why he moved here was simply love. A restless and free thinker, Byron began his long affair with Countess Teresa Gamba Guiccioli for whom he felt a strong physical and spiritual attraction, which he defined “my last attachment”. When he first arrived in Ravenna, he stayed in the Hotel Imperiale which rose where the modern Biblioteca Alfredo Oriani is, just a few metres from Dante’s tomb.

What did Byron like in our city, apart from the young attractive countess? From his letters and his journal we understand that he spent his time riding in the Pineta di Classe and in the Pineta San Vitale. He also liked writing poetry. Here in Ravenna he wrote a lot: Mazeppa, Cain, Marino Faliero, I due foscari, Sardanapalus, he also started his masterpiece Don Juan and wrote the short poem “The Prophecy of Dante” dedicated to the great Italian poet he deeply admired. Dante and Byron shared a common destiny; the experience of exile. A rebel, an outsider, a romantic, a freedom fighter. It was thanks to Pietro Gamba, Teresa’s brother, that Byron joined the local Carbonari and turned Palazzo Guiccioli, where he lived, into an arsenal. In November 1821 Byron, Teresa and Pietro fled to Pisa and then to Livorno; in 1823 the Lord left Italy to join the Greek war where he died.

Some mementos from the love story between the poet and the countess are preserved in the Classense Library, such as portraits, locks of hair and, above all, 143 letters that the poet wrote to her in a passionate and intimate Italian language. Palazzo Gamba is a private establishment, while Palazzo Guiccioli is under restoration and will be open to the public within the year.

Byron liked this small provincial town that was deeply impressed when he arrived in his black luxurious carriage full of animals. After nearly two hundred years the memory of the poet is still alive, in every corner of the town.


How to reach Ravenna

By car: Ravenna is located at the crossroad of the Motorway A14 and the Motorway A1 (Milan-Florence-Bologna); if you come from Venice, you can take the Highway Main Road 309 Romea; coming from the South of Italy, you can take the Free Way E45 Roma-Cesena. If you come from the regions of Marche, Abruzzo or Puglia, you can take the Highway Main Road 16 “Adriatica” that runs along the Adriatic Coast.

You can reach Ravenna from the main train stations of Bologna, Rimini, Ferrara and Florence.

Ravenna is linked with the airports of Rimini (Federico Fellini), Bologna (Guglielmo Marconi) and Venice (Marco Polo).