Easy to reach through an efficient network of connections, Ravenna offers a notable variety of landscapes: rambling farmlands with fruit groves, lagoons and canals flanked by typical local fishing nets, sandy, well-equipped beaches, centuries-old pinewoods and a clean sea.
Ravenna is a treasure chest of art, history and culture, a city with ancient origins and a glorious past. It became capital three times: it was capital of the Western Roman Empire, of Theodoric King of the Goths and of the Byzantine Empire in Europe.
The basilicas and baptisteries of the city preserve the richest heritage of mosaics in the world, dating back to the 5th and 6th centuries, and eight historic buildings are included in the World Heritage List of UNESCO. If Ravenna was the most important political and cultural centre of the West during the centuries that saw the decline of the Latin civilisation, nontheless it also offers findings of more recent origin, from the archaeology of the Domus dei Tappeti di Pietra to the vast Late Antique port of Classe.
It is the city that guards the remains of Dante and keeps alive the memory of the great poet with important cultural events. The winding streets still reveal the past of a city built on a lagoon and the presence of water in the canals that crossed it. The canals were closed during the Venetian domination period, at the end of the Fifteenth Century, so that the elegant space of Piazza Maggiore, now named Piazza del Popolo, was opened.
In the Eighteenth Century the city was connected to the sea by a new navigable canal, the current port, which the people of Ravenna call Candiano. The Corsini Canal opened up new perspectives for resuming the ancient vocation as a port.
The cultural offer of Ravenna is abundant and varied: MAR, the City Art Museum of Ravenna, programmes regular exhibitions of high profile and is home to a number of permanent collections; the National Museum exhibits a variety of collections, including findings from excavations of Roman and Byzantine remains; TAMO. All the adventure of mosaic, is a permanent, interactive and multimedia exhibition dedicated to the art of mosaic in all its aspects, from antiquity up to contemporary times; the Archiepiscopal Museum includes the Chapel of Saint Andrew (Unesco); the Dantean Museum holds heirlooms connected with the cult and fame of the poet, while the Museum of the Risorgimento bears witness to the fervent passions of Mazzini and Garibaldi who stirred up the people of Ravenna in a more recent past.
Located at a short distance from the sea, Ravenna also offers nine seaside resort areas along its 35 kilometres of coast for a wide variety of holidays and stays. The organisation of services is efficient and dynamic, and the range of options is as wide as possible: sunshine and relaxation, games, sports and fitness, excursions and parks, including Mirabilandia theme park, in addition to the varied and delicious wine and food offer. There are many cycle lanes which make it possible to ride to any part of the town, Theodoric's park, the Planetarium, The Garden of Forgotten Herbs or the Basilica of Sant'Apollinare in Classe. For lovers of nature and excursions nothing can be more exciting than walking in the reserve of Punte Alberete and its silent swamped forests which provide shelter for rare bird species, or visiting the Nature Museum of Sant'Alberto, located at the edge of the lagoons.
The historic pinewoods of San Vitale and Classe, unique as monuments to nature, have been included in the protected areas of the Po Delta Park. Ravenna is a living mosaic.