Brescia (Lombardy): what to see in 1 day


What to see in Brescia, one-day itinerary including the main monuments and places of interest, including the Church of San Salvatore, the Duomo Vecchio, the archaeological area, Palazzo Martinengo, Palazzo della Loggia and Castello.

Tourist information

Rich in important artistic testimonies, Brescia is a city in Lombardy, located between the Mella river and the last slopes of the Lombard pre-Alps.

It was initially inhabited by the Ligurians, then by the Gauls and, taking the name of Brixia, by the Romans.

Before becoming a free commune in the twelfth century, Brescia underwent Lombard domination.

It was a possession of the Pallavicini, then of the Torriani and Della Scala, in the fourteenth century of the Visconti, finally between 1404 and 1797 it became a territory belonging to the Republic of Venice.

After joining the Lombard-Veneto Kingdom in 1815, Brescia was nicknamed the Lioness of Italy, following the Risorgimento uprisings which, in 1849, culminated in the ten days of Brescia.

Starting the visit from the south-eastern sector, you enter Via Crispi and you come across the interesting Church of Sant’Angela Merici, an ancient building dedicated in the past to Sant’Afra.

Inside you can admire important works of art, including the Transfiguration of Tintoretto.

Nearby is via Moretto, where the Church of Sant'Alessandro is located, where interesting paintings are preserved, including an Annunciation by Jacopo Bellini.

In the fifteenth-century Palazzo Martinengo da Barco, located in the homonymous street, there is the very interesting collection of the Tosio-Martinengo art gallery, including many works of art, including frescoes from the thirteenth and fifteenth centuries, as well as the blessing Christ and the Angel's Head by Raphael, the Adoration of the shepherds by Lorenzo Lotto and the Portrait of senator by Tintoretto.

Continuing to walk, from via Crispi you pass to via Gallo, from where, taking an alley on the right, you reach the church of San Clemente, which preserves remarkable pictorial works by Romanino and Moretto.

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Continuing the itinerary, past Piazza del Foro, in the Via dei Musei there is the modern art gallery, set up in a wing of the Monastery of San Salvatore.

There are works of art created between the eighteenth and twentieth centuries, including a bust of Eleonora d’Este by Canova.

In the complex of the monastery there is also the Church of Santa Maria in Solario from 1200, while on the back there is the museum of the Christian age, housed in the former church of San Giulia, where it is possible to admire, among other things, a precious lipsanoteca in ivory of the fourth century.

The museum leads to the Church of San Salvatore, of which today only three naves remain, built in the ninth century over the remains of a previous older church.

Noteworthy are the capitals and frescoes by Romanino.

Going back to Piazza del Foro, along the Via dei Musei you will find an important Roman archaeological area, composed of the remains of the Roman theater and the Capitoline temple.

Continuing to walk in via dei Musei you arrive in the Piazza del Duomo, which was the center of civil and religious life during the medieval period, where, in addition to the Duomo, there are the Broletto, the Rotonda and two eighteenth century fountains.

What see

Il Broletto is a remarkable late Romanesque building built at the end of 1100 and enlarged later.

On its walls there are remarkable mullioned windows and the loggia of the shouts.

Once entered the building, through a frescoed entrance, there is a vast courtyard characterized by Gothic elements with the contrast of subsequent interventions carried out in the seventeenth century.

The building is dominated by the 11th century Torre del Popolo, crowned by an ornamental battlements.

The New Cathedral consists of a grandiose three-nave church built by Battista Lantana in 1604 and completed in 1825 with the addition of the dome designed by Cagnola.

In the magnificent interior with three naves with columns with fluted pilasters, there are important works of art, including the Sacrifice of Isaac del Moretto, the Ark of the Santissimi Apollonio and Filastro, built in the sixteenth century, and organ doors decorated by the Romanino, depicting the Marriage of the Virgin, the Presentation in the Temple of Jesus and the Visitation of Mary.

The Old Cathedral, commonly called "La Rotonda" due to its particular shape, is a remarkable building of Brescian Romanesque art, built in the twelfth century in the same place where previously an early Christian basilica once stood.

Formed by two overlapping cylindrical bodies, the Rotonda has a simple interior, surmounted by a hemispherical dome and illuminated by large windows.

In the presbytery there are works by Moretto and a precious treasure, while in the eleventh century crypt there are portions of frescoes made between the twelfth and fourteenth centuries.

Not far away is Piazza della Vittori, overlooked by some Renaissance buildings and the Clock Tower, which overlooks a beautiful porticoed building.

The Loggia is the ancient town hall, a building whose construction dates back to the period between 1492 and 1574.

The ground floor of the Loggia, partly arcaded, is opened by large arches, while the upper floor is decorated with friezes and equipped with elegant windows.

The church of San Giovanni Evangelista, an early Christian church rebuilt in the fifteenth century, has an interior that preserves many works of art, including a Madonna and Saints by Moretto and a Marriage of the Virgin by Romanino.

San Francesco is another three-nave church of the thirteenth century, built in Romanesque-Gothic forms, comprising a beautiful cloister, internal works of art and a remarkable sacristy from the fifteenth century.

The Renaissance church of Santa Maria dei Miracoli boasts a remarkable facade embellished with fine ornaments, while the interior was completely rebuilt following the destruction suffered during the Second World War.

In the Church of Saints Nazaro and Celso, with an eighteenth-century facade, valuable works of art are preserved, including the Annunciation with Saints and the Risen Jesus of Titian, in addition to the Nativity with Saints and other works by Moretto, while in the Sacristy find the work entitled the Three Wise Men, made by Romanino.

Going up the Cidneo hill, in the north-eastern part of the city, it is possible to visit the medieval Castle, fortified in the second half of the sixteenth century.

It is a complex of towers and bulwarks, having a fifteenth-century keep.

The castle houses the Risorgimento museum, the museum of weapons and the astronomical observatory cidnea.

DAY TRIP TO BRESCIA ☆ Abroad in Italy (March 2024)

Tags: Lombardy