Ravenna is an unmissable destination when visiting the region Emilia Romagna. It houses a large number of buildings declared a World Heritage Site by UNESCO, which making it artistically one of the most important cities in Italy. Then you can discover all there is to see in Ravenna, the city of mosaics and Byzantine art.
It is located halfway between Bologna e Venezia and it is a city rich in art, history and culture. It was the capital of the Roman Empire between the XNUMXth and XNUMXth centuries, the capital of the reign of Theodoric King of the Ostrogoths and the capital of the Byzantine Empire in Europe. The magnificence of these periods has left a rich architectural and artistic heritage that we can admire today.
The city is most famous for its incredible mosaics, dating back to the fifth and sixth centuries AD which are among the most beautiful representations of early Christian and Byzantine art in Europe, classified as world heritage by Unesco.
History of Ravenna
The origins of Ravenna date back to the XNUMXnd century BC when the city was colonized by the Roman Empire, although there are already reports of ancient Etruscan settlements in the Po Valley.
Ravenna's fame grew gradually, partly because of his own strategic position. The city was located near the delta of the river Po, the marshes that isolated it from several parts from the mainland served as a natural defense, and at the same time it had direct access to the sea, from where supplies and reinforcements could be received.
Emperor Caesar Octavian Augustus he endowed the city with an important military port in the nearby Classe and built a large hydraulic canal that connected the river Po with the port, a real work of hydraulic engineering.
In 402 AD Ravenna became the capital of the Western Roman Empire. In the city there were magnificent civil and religious buildings entirely covered with mosaics. Among the most important buildings we can also list those built during the reign of Theodoric, king of the Ostrogoths.
Finally Ravenna was capital of the Byzantium empire in Europe. The magnificence of that period left a great heritage of monuments in the city.
What to do in Ravenna: guided tours and other activities
The main attraction of Ravenna lies within its buildings. Undoubtedly, the Byzantine architecture, early Christian art and mosaics from places like the Basilica of San Vitale or the mausoleum of Galla Placidia are the strong point of the city. It is always nice to take a walk and get to know the streets of a city, but in the case of Ravenna, if you do not enter its monuments, you will lose 90% of the experience.
There are several excursions that organize a guided tour of Ravenna, and that include access to all the important monuments that must be seen in the city.
What to see in Ravenna
The city hosts one of the highest concentrations of early Christian and Byzantine art in the world. There are many interesting things and buildings to see in Ravenna, and many of them were declared a World Heritage Site by Unesco in 1996, because they house spectacular works of art, made mainly with small mosaics.
One of the advantages is that most of the main monuments to see in Ravenna can be visited in just one day.