Ferrara

Ferrara is situated in the north east of Emilia-Romagna on the Po di Volano, a channel of the Po River. The town has broad streets and many palaces dating from the 14th century and 15th century, when it hosted the court of the House of Este. It has been qualified by UNESCO as World Heritage Site for its beauty and cultural importance. Ferrara is characterized by twisting medieval cobblestoned streets, a Duomo (cathedral) with a looming Gothic facade and a castle (Il Castello Estense) complete with towers, moat, and drawbridges. Ferrara is on the main rail line from Bologna to Padua and Venice, and has branches to Ravenna, Poggio Rusco (for Suzzara) and Codigoro. In 2006, due to its important historical significance, Ferrara became the headquarters of the Italian Hermitage Museum. It is only the fifth city in the world to have been linked with the Russian museum. From this union the Hermitage-Italy Foundation was born. Thanks to the d'Este family of astute art patrons, Ferrara contains many beautiful objects of art. The city itelf is the masterpiece. Half medieval, half Renaissance, the dual cityscape was the vision of oligarch Ercole d'Este, who hired architect Biagio Rossetti to seamlessly meld the newer section to the old.

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