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Treviso - a city of art and water


The close link which existed between Treviso and Venice is still noticeable in the names of places.
For instance, the water connection allowing trading exchanges between the countryside and the capital city of the Serenissima Republic was known as "Buranelli".
Buranelli is the name of an isle of the Venetian lagoon, and tradition has it that some fishermen from that isle moved to this embankment that has now become one of the very special corners of Treviso.
Today's arrangement of the Pescheria (Fishermen's Market) dates back to the times of the Habsburg domination.
In 1856 the Austrians decided to connect some of the isles of the Cagnan Grandeto allocate some space to the Fishermen's Market: today, in the shade of some horse-chestnuts, it still colours and animates the city landscape.

 This area is also characterised by the presence of fruit and vegetables stalls which, together with the small shops and the osterias, make it a steady reference point for the social life of the locals.
"Là dove Sile e Cagnan s'accompagna" These words taken from Dante's Paradiso help us introduce a brief story of the bridge that - owing to the number of difficulties encountered during its construction - was called "The Bridge of the Impossible".
This bridge took its name after Dante Alighieri in 1865 and is located at the cross-point between the clear waters of the River Sile and the muddier ones of the Cagnan.
On these banks were the so-called 'squeri', where boats used for trading exchanges with Venice were built.



The City Museum of Treviso displays works of extreme value of which the Trevigiani are very proud.
St. Catherine's Church dating back to the 14th century and the nearby Convent Servi di Maria constitute the main location of the museum.
Inside the two buildings a vast archaeology section offers precious evidence of local history starting from the 2nd millennium b.C. till the early Middle Ages.
The Convent displays frescoes of the 14th and 15th century including the marvellous Ciclo di Sant'Orsola by Tommaso da Modena as well as other important paintings (among which some works by Bellini, Lotto, Titian and Tiepolo) which date up to the 19th century.
Some masterpieces by 20th-century Treviso artists Gino Rossi and Arturo Martini can now be seen at the Galleria Comunale di Arte Moderna.

 Born in Treviso in 1889, Arturo Martini reversed the laws of sculpture with his revolutionary works for which he used a wide range of different materials: from wood to stone, from clay to bronze.
Back in the 14th century, Casa dei Carraresi was a hostel which served as a resting place for travellers.
The façade displays a coat of arms of the Da Carrara family which witnessed the role of this House as a location for the family's officials rather than as a family residence.
This Romanesque-style building contains several frescoes from the Middle Ages. Today it is a centre for interesting meetings and seminars and above all exhibitions attracting visitors from all over the world.



The whole history of Treviso is depicted in its marvellous frescoed houses, porticos and quiet canals where Europe's longest resurgent river, the Sile, flows past the city walls through natural oases, old mills and Venetian villas.
Thanks to its urban layout, Treviso is often referred to as the perfect human-friendly city.
The beating heart of the city centre is Piazza dei Signori - a true outdoor sitting-room where the Trevigiani (inhabitants of Treviso) like to meet and chat ('ciacolare' in the local dialect).
Around the piazza are the Palazzo della Prefettura, erected between 1874 and 1877, and the imposing Torre Civica (City Tower) hosting the characteristic 'Campanòn' (Big Bell).
Another monument amongst the most representative of the city centre faces the piazza: it is the Palazzo dei Trecento, a Romanesque-style palace which was built at the beginning of the 13th century and restored after the bombing of April 7, 1944.

 Also worth mentioning is the Lombard Renaissance style Palazzo del Podestà, originally built in 1491, which underwent significant changes during the last century.
The piazza can be reached through Calmaggiore, a name originating from the Latin 'Callis maior'.
This road with its magnificent porticos leads from Piazza dei Signori right through to the Cathedral.
In Roman times, it was the so-called Cardo Maximum and a portion of the ancient route has recently been found underneath the floor of a local shop in an area called Galleria Romana, which can now be visited by request.
At the crossroads between cardo and decumano you can see the Romanesque Loggia dei Cavalieri, built under the rule of podesta Andrea da Perugia and covered with a recently restored baroque decorated fresco.



Treviso has been a fortified town since Roman times, but today's circle of walls date back to the 16th century when first Fra' Giocondo and then Bartolomeo D'Alviano had them reinforced and enlarged by order of the Venetian Republic.
You can still see the original embankment built up on the outside with a thick, almost 4 km long wall of bricks, and the circular keeps with half-hidden embrasures tellingus of the role played by Treviso as an important defensive bulwark at the times of the Serenissima Republic.
It may sound bizarre that a similar military construction is today an ideal place for walking or jogging, in a charming green landscape dotted with water.
Three gates - San Tommaso, Santi Quaranta and Altinia - have a strong visual impact on the visitor, almost a triumphant welcome to the capital city of the Marca.



The Italian writer Giovanni Comisso spoke of the Cathedral of Treviso as "the small Vatican": in fact, the complex includes the Church, the Baptistery, the Bishop's Palace, and the Parsonages.
The Cathedral, devoted to St. Peter, was originally erected between the 11th and 12th century (the Romanesque crypt was probably finished in 1030), although today's edifice mainly dates back to 18th century Neo-Renaissance style re-construction.
The pronaos on the front of the Church with its large staircase was then built in 1836. There are seven domes on top of the building, five of which are placed along the axis of the nave.
Amongst the many works hosted inside the Cathedral, Titian's Annunciazione dating back to the 16th century certainly



t was the Black Death - as the Great Plague which struck Europe between 1348 and 1350 was called - that suspended the edification of the Church of St. Nicolò that the Dominicans had started early in the 14th century thanks to the legacy that Pope Benedict XI (Niccolò Bocassino da Treviso), had generously devolved.
After the Plague, the painter Tommaso da Modena was entrusted with frescoing the Sala del Capitolo of the Convent in the Dominicans' honour.
The portraits of the major representatives of the Dominican Order are still looking down on us from the old walls of the church - how could we not notice that friar with spectacles who skims through a book with a curious glance?
It is probably the first representation of spectacles in the history of art.

The inside of the church is characterised by a warm, bright atmosphere and excellent acoustics which were so useful to the preaching character of the Dominicans.
Among the favourite churches of Trevigiani is the Temple devoted to St.Francis
Its sober architecture matches very well with those ideals of sobriety and essentiality that were so cherished by the Franciscan Order, especially inside, where bare brick walls and diffused light create an ambience of well-being and deep spiritual inspiration.
The works contained in this church include, on the right aisle, the tomb of Francesca Petrarca - the poet Francesco's daughter - who died in Treviso in 1384, whereas the left aisle hosts frescoes by Tommaso da Modena and some of his apprentices. Open all mornings till midday, afternoons from 3 to 6 (except during church services).



The first University of Treviso was established around 1263 but it was mainly during the 18th century that various Academies were opened.
Today the University is located on the old site of the Hospice of Santa Maria dei Battuti which offered assistance to the poor and pilgrims. Later on, the City Hospital was established in the same place, and only recently has the complex acquired its new role as the newUniversity of Treviso - a branch of the Universities of Padua and Venice - thanks to the Cassamarca Foundation.
Visitors should not miss a stroll in the brand-new Quartiere Latino, where tradition and innovation live splendidly side by side and where young Trevigiani like to meet for lively summer evenings.



The capital of the "Marca gioiosa et amorosa" as the region of Treviso was commonly known in the Middle Ages, Treviso has a city centre which is full of beautiful surprises, but also typical products to be tasted in restaurants, in traditional trattorias or in the typical osterias, where it is a must to stop and drink a glass of wine ("un'ombra di vino") served along with fanciful appetizers ("cicchetti").

A large variety of unique products ranging from red chicory (Radicchio Rosso) - an unmatched ingredient of fine cuisine - to local cheese such as the creamy Casatella Trevigiana, from renowned wines of the Marca to the delicious cake called Tiramisù.
A true invitation to savour your week-end bit by bit.



As of this year, you will be able to directly book your stay in Treviso with Xevents.
Send a fax or email (details below) and we will find a solution that suit your needs and budget.
Bookings will be taken from the beginning of April 2007
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For more information:
Phone: +39 0422-422192 (9.30 - 12.30 / 14.30 - 17.30)
Fax: +39 0422-422192



The capital city of its namesake Province, Treviso is only 30 Km far from Venice and may be reached:

  • by motorway: A27 (exits Treviso nord and Treviso sud); A4 (exit Cessalto)
  • by plane: Antonio Canova (Treviso), Marco Polo (Venezia) airports
  • by railway: Venezia-Udine, Venezia-Belluno, Vicenza-Treviso lines