Pavia, Lombardy Region
From the courtyard of its University have passed great minds like Ugo Foscolo and Alessandro Volta. On the roads of Oltrepò, Albert Einstein. Pavia is wisdom, pride, and tradition.
Memory and tradition enrich without impeding. Big thinkers and innovative ideas roam here between the loggia and the Cortile delle Magnolie within the University founded in 1361 by Emperor Carlo IV. Among the oldest in Italy, science, history, and the avant-garde find space to breathe here, from the University Library to the History Museum and the Botanical Garden, with its gorgeous greenhouse.
Pass through the city to explore the museums inside the Visconti Castle or the Ponte della Libertà, to be admired by night when the arches are illuminated by the artist Marco Lodola. The Gothic tomb from the 14th century, where Sant’Agostino rests, is conserved in San Pietro in Ciel d’Oro. Meanwhile, Barbarossa was coronated within the incredible Basilica of San Michele Maggiore. An “underground” resonance chamber awaits in the 18th century Teatro Fraschini, dedicated to the legendary Verdian tenor.
By bike, cross the Ponte Coperto that connects the historic city center to Borgo Ticino along the banks of the Ticino River. Pedaling towards the hills that cultivate some of the finest wines in Oltrepò Pavese or a late-gothic, goosebump inducing Certosa.