What to do and see in Parma, Italy: The Best Places and Tips

October 5, 2017 Agatha Simes

Best known for its incredibly edible contributions to world gastronomy (especially parmigiano cheese and Parma ham), Parma has also been revered by opera lovers (who flock to its Teatro Regio) since the days of Verdi, who was born in nearby Roncole. Parma’s many historic sights include the 11th-century cathedral and its baptistry. Begun in the 12th century, it's considered one of medieval Europe’s most important buildings for its straddling of the Romanesque and Gothic architecture periods.
Restaurants in Parma

1. Teatro Farnese

Palazzo Della Pilotta, 43121, Parma, Italy 0520233309
Excellent
79%
Good
17%
Satisfactory
2%
Poor
1%
Terrible
1%
Overall Ratings

4.5 based on 1 reviews

Teatro Farnese

Splendida ricostruzione di teatro farnesiano nel palazzo della pilotta

Reviewed By Vic H - Raholt

This review is biased because we were there for an unforgettable opera experience during the 2017 Verdi Opera Festival. but it is a long way up the steps to get into the main arena. Although I believe if you ask the staff it is possible to take a trade lift to the hall. This is also location for the National Art Gallery and the old Library. A wonderful place to visit.

2. Cattedrale di Parma

P.zza Duomo, 43100, Parma, Italy +39 0521 235886
Excellent
70%
Good
26%
Satisfactory
2%
Poor
1%
Terrible
1%
Overall Ratings

4.5 based on 1 reviews

Cattedrale di Parma

Reviewed By Marciopascoa - Manaus, AM

I ever studied the external shape of this Cathedral as typical Romanic example in architecture. Never imagined what was inside. All chapels and walls, ceiling, etc was painted in fresco. The most of this work by Gambara, a renaissance artist. It is a touching work of art, the most impressive that I could see traveling 10 countries of Europe along 20 years and dozens of cities, hundreds of churches. This is the top of art work and architecture. If you add the Baptistery, so it is unbeatable expression of human art.

3. Caffe' dei Marchesi

Largo l. Mercantini | Via Silvio Pellico 17 a Largo Mercantini, 43126, Parma, Italy +39 333 186 5477
Excellent
81%
Good
13%
Satisfactory
4%
Poor
2%
Terrible
0%
Overall Ratings

4.5 based on 136 reviews

Caffe' dei Marchesi

4. Battistero di Parma

Piazza Duomo 7/a, 43121, Parma, Italy +39 0521 235886
Excellent
65%
Good
26%
Satisfactory
6%
Poor
2%
Terrible
1%
Overall Ratings

4.5 based on 1 reviews

Battistero di Parma

Reviewed By dxmyekat - Tirana, Albania

This one-of-a-kind structure is something one must see in Parma. As we learned, everyone in Parma was baptized here until 1917. The vaulted dome with its rings of paintings is magnificent.

5. Camera di San Paolo

Strada Giuseppe Garibaldi, 43121, Parma, Italy +39 0521 533221
Excellent
63%
Good
29%
Satisfactory
4%
Poor
1%
Terrible
3%
Overall Ratings

4.5 based on 364 reviews

Camera di San Paolo

Reviewed By Nonno2000 - Castro Valley, California

A real masterpiece, just one room of splendor in an otherwise mediocre set of rooms. Niches seem so real, 3d into 2d as this kind of art is supposed to do. Sit and enjoy. We were literally not interrupted by any other visitor.
Continue through the path past the ticket office and you will find another interesting site, the puppet museum. Puppets from the mid 1800's on. A quick visit is worthwhile and it is at no cost; all Parma civic museums are zero price for all.

6. Teatro Regio

Strada Giuseppe Garibaldi 16a, 43121, Parma, Italy +39 0521 203999
Excellent
63%
Good
28%
Satisfactory
5%
Poor
2%
Terrible
2%
Overall Ratings

4.5 based on 304 reviews

Teatro Regio

Reviewed By Malbear - London

While I was visiting Parma the Opera House was presenting the annual Verdi festival. Ticket prices were way beyond my budget but I was able to join a tour in English. You only visit the auditorium but this is splendid. It is very much a standard design of the period but it is beautifully maintained. It also has a very interesting history.

7. Castello dei Burattini

Via Melloni 3, 43100, Parma, Italy +39 0521 031631
Excellent
47%
Good
41%
Satisfactory
12%
Poor
0%
Terrible
0%
Overall Ratings

4.5 based on 138 reviews

Castello dei Burattini

Reviewed By westy54 - Sydney

We noticed this museum only because it was next to the Camera di San Paolo. It is a collection of the Ferrari family puppets, crafted over 4 generations since before 1880, and supplemented by puppets and marionettes from other parts of Italy.
Each puppet has been hand carved from wood, hand painted and specifically dressed. The array of different facial features, from the grotesque to the amusing, is amazing.
There are a couple of short films, including one were the family, with puppets, performed on the Ed Sullivan Show.
We ended up staying longer than expected, but this is not a museum for everyone.

8. Basilica di Santa Maria della Steccata(Madonna della Steccata)

Strada Giuseppe Garibaldi, 43121, Parma, Italy
Excellent
42%
Good
50%
Satisfactory
7%
Poor
1%
Terrible
0%
Overall Ratings

4.5 based on 367 reviews

Basilica di Santa Maria della Steccata(Madonna della Steccata)

Reviewed By Tony D - Yomitan-son, Japan

We had not planned to stop in this church, but we thought the outside architecture looked unique. This a medium sized church and will not take long to walk through (as long as mass has finished). The dome & apse ceilings were the most impressive with it's large frescoes. Definitely a nice & quick surprise.

9. Monastero di San Giovanni Evangelista

Piazzale San Giovanni 1, 43121, Parma, Italy +39 0521 235311
Excellent
48%
Good
41%
Satisfactory
9%
Poor
1%
Terrible
1%
Overall Ratings

4.5 based on 197 reviews

Monastero di San Giovanni Evangelista

Reviewed By Terry C - Chiang Mai, Thailand

This place has it all, great architecture, beautiful columns, looks great from the outside and even more beautiful once you are inside, located behind the Cathedral and for some reason was not crowded with tourists, it seems it is much lesser known, but believe me, it is well worth a visit

10. Palazzo della Pilotta

Piazzale della Pilotta, Parma, Italy +39 0521 233309
Excellent
50%
Good
35%
Satisfactory
11%
Poor
2%
Terrible
2%
Overall Ratings

4 based on 427 reviews

Palazzo della Pilotta

Reviewed By John W - Twickenham, United Kingdom

The Teatro Farnese is extraordinary. Vast timber C17 auditorium and stage which still houses plays and operas. The entrance ticket also takes you into the Galleria with some marvellous renaissance paintings not least a wonderful da Vinci panel painting which is worth the price of the admission on its own.

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