About 90 miles north of Florence, in the region of Emilia-Romagna, lies Modena, the hometown of sublime balsamic vinegar, the celebrated Italian tenor Luciano Pavorotti and Enzo Ferrari, the creator of the famous supercar. Add spectacular architecture, excellent restaurants, chic small boutiques and you have a perfect destination fordeluxe Italy tours.
Modena’s 12th century Cathedral, Piazza Grande and the Ghirlandina Tower in the city’s elegant historic centre have been declared UNESCO World Heritage Sites. Admire the architectural gems while sipping an aperitivo at an outdoor table of Caffè Concerto on the central piazza. The beautiful Palazzo dei Musei houses the Civic Museum of Art, the Archeological Ethnological Museum and the Estense Gallery with excellent collections of ceramics, ancient textiles, and paintings by such masters as Correggio, Tintoretto, Veronese, Guido Reni, Guercino.
The recently opened Enzo Ferrari Museum tells the life story of the supercar creator and local hero. You can admire the shiny cars on display, visit the Ferrari factory in Maranello, just outside of the city or book a thrilling test-drive.
For a spot of shopping in this superb destination for deluxe Italy tours head to the chic boutiques and gourmet food shops on corso Canalchiaro where you will find everything from sleek Italian made homeware to sunglasses and edible gifts to take home.
Modena is home to one of the best restaurants in Italy and, undoubtedly, in the world, Michelin starred Osteria Francescana. Prepare to splash out as the prices start at 120 for a degustation menu but it is certainly worth every cent. Here innovation mixes with tradition and the results are mouth-watering dishes such as “An eel swimming up the Po River”, “Branzino in an infusion of fragrances from the Gulf of Sorrento”.
For a more orthodox approach to the local cuisine head to Hosteria Giusti located inside a 400-year-old delicatessen. With only four tables, the place is always full of happy customers devouring zampone (minced meat- stuffed pig trotters) with lentils, suckling pig, tortellini, cherry tarts and other local specialties washed down with sparkling red Lambrusco wine.
Photos from Flickr by: Roberto Ferrari, Enrico Maioli, Matt Cottam