Ravenna weekend: first evening

TeodoraLast weekend we went to Ravenna. It is in Emilia Romagna, east of Bologna and south of Venice. I had always heard there were beautiful mosaics there, but had never been there before. It was easy enough: fast train to Bologna (two hours from Rome), then a slow local train to Ravenna (80 minutes). The mosaic above is in the Basilica San Vitale, depicting the Empress Theodora. Ravenna has eight UNESCO World Heritage Sites.

Mosaic floor, Basilica San Vitale.

nuns looking at dress
Via di San Vitale: window-shopping nuns?

Byzantine wedding dress
No, the nuns were looking at this fabulous Empress Theodora-inspired wedding dress in the shop window. Can you blame them?

imageMore window-shopping. Emilia-Romagna is in Northern Italy, and you’ll find Bologna, Modena, Parma, Ferrara and Rimini here. The food was quite different from Rome, and delicious. What we did not know was that the night we arrived (12 October) was the Notte d’Oro, the Night of Gold. Like the Notte Bianca in Rome: concerts, museums open late, and hordes of people.

20131019-191701.jpgSquacqerone is a local soft, fresh cheese.

20131019-170440.jpgThis was also the opening weekend of a mosaic festival, so through the weekend we encountered modern mosaic pieces among the ancient sites. Quite an interesting juxtaposition.
There were masses of people out, concerts in the piazzas, and we finally sought refuge at the mosaics exhibit at TAMO. Museum were open late that evening, and it was lovely and tranquil there. This is from the exhibit.

imageOn our way back to the hotel, we passed the wedding shop again. Lo and behold, as it was Notte d’Oro: a beautiful live model in the window, wearing the Empress Theodora wedding dress!



7 thoughts on “Ravenna weekend: first evening

    1. krumkaker Post author

      We were on our way for dinner so did not try this one, but I had some squacquerone gelato the next day. Squacquerone is a soft, fresh, quite watery and wobbly cheese, like stracchino or crescenza. No crust or rind, it is not cured and must be eaten within 3-4 days. Nice!

    1. krumkaker Post author

      Oh, how nice to be knowledgable about the mosaic! I went home to read more about Theodora, and the Byzantine history. Beautiful as the mosaics are, the allegories and symbolism are also really intriguing. (But you would know more about that.) Hope you get the chance to see this yourself some day.


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