Mantua Walking tours

Our most recommended Mantua Walking tours

Mantua: Guided Walking Tour

1. Mantua: Guided Walking Tour

Discover the historic center of Mantua on a guided walking tour. Learn about the history and culture of this UNESCO World Heritage site, and hear stories of the Gonzaga family who designed it. Explore the highlights of this beautiful city, as well as its hidden gems. Your tour starts from the courtyards of Palazzo Ducale, and passes through Saint Giorgio Castle and Casa del Rigoletto. Wander down ancient streets and admire the most important sights, including Piazza Erbe and the Clock Tower. The tour ends by the Basilica di Sant’Andrea.

Mantua: 2-Hour Guided Walking Tour

2. Mantua: 2-Hour Guided Walking Tour

Discover the birthplace of Virgil, the city where Shakespeare’s Romeo took refuge, and the setting for Verdi’s dramatic opera, “Rigoletto” on a 2-hour guided walk of Mantua. Surrounded by 3 small lakes, Mantua rises magically from the waters of the River Mincio, and the lakes and medieval canal of the "Rio." Learn how water and earth are interwoven to form the character of the town in public squares and at churches that only locals know. Start at the Casa di Rigoletto, chosen by the wealthy Gonzaga family as the residence of the legendary fool in Verdi’s opera. Continue to the Castle of St. George (San Giorgio) and the ducal palace of the Palazzo Ducale di Mantova. Marvel at public spaces of outstanding interest, such as Piazza Castello, Piazza Santa Barbara, and Piazza Lega Lombarda. Admire the façade of the ducal palace on Piazza Sordello. Then, go to Mantua Cathedral, dedicated to Saint Peter. Marvel at the facing Palazzo Bonacolsi, before going to Piazza Broletto to see the medieval palaces of the Palazzo del Podesta, Palazzo del Massaro, and Arengario. Next, visit Piazza dell Erbe to look at the Astronomical Clock Tower and the palaces of the Palazzo Cervetta and Palazzo della Ragione. See the imposing church of the Rotonda di San Lorenzo (Mantua’s oldest religious building). Admire the massive dome and Renaissance exterior of the Basilica of Sant'Andrea, and continue to Piazza Leon Battista Alberti to see the former cloister of Sant'Andrea Monastery. On request, you can also visit the beautiful Bibiena Theater where Mozart played when he was only 13 years old, and with an extraordinary auditorium designed in the late Baroque or early Rococo style by Antonio Galli Bibiena.

Mantova: Private Walking Tour

3. Mantova: Private Walking Tour

After gathering in front of the entrance of the Captain's Palace in Piazza Sordello, your private Mantua sightseeing tour will kick off. This little-known city is a breathtaking jewel that boasts magnificent buildings. It is also home to splendid squares and charming alleys lined with arcades and graceful houses. Mantua is small but spectacular and is surrounded by a beautiful natural environment where art, nature, cultural heritage, excellent food, and a good overall lifestyle make life sweeter. You will see St. George's Castle, built by Francesco Gonzaga between 1395 and 1406, which became one of the most important examples of the Italian Renaissance when Andrea Mantegna painted the famous Camera degli Sposi. Your guide will then take you to visit Piazza Sordello, the main and most ancient nucleus of Mantua. This is where the town was born, and this square still represents the most important place in town, with its Duomo di Mantiva cathedral, Palazzo Ducale, and the other palaces which date back to the Middle Ages. Among the other attractions, you will also see Piazza delle Erbe, which has been the main marketplace in town since the Middle Ages.

Mantova City Center and Ducal Palace: 3-Hour Guided Tour

4. Mantova City Center and Ducal Palace: 3-Hour Guided Tour

Surrounded by 3 small lakes, Mantova rises almost magically from the waters. The relationship between Mantua and water is a very close one: the Mincio River, the lakes and the medieval canal known as Rio are all entwined in Mantovan traditions. On a 3-hour walking tour in the city center you’ll discover how water and earth are unexpectedly interwoven. See stunning buildings, squares and churches. Learn about the importance of the Gongaza family in fine art and how they transformed their home into what is today the largest museum in Italy. The Ducal Palace was built between the 14th and the 17th centuries as the family’s royal residence in the capital of their duchy. The buildings are connected by corridors and galleries and feature inner courts and gardens. The complex includes about a thousand rooms and occupies an area of 34,000 square meters. Although most famous for Mantegna's frescos in the Camera degli Sposi (Wedding Room), there are many other very significant architectural and painted elements. Visit Rigoletto's House, see the exterior of the Saint George Castle and visit Piazza Castello, Piazza Santa Barbara and Piazza lega Lombarda. At Piazza Sordello you’ll have views of the Ducal Palace façade, the Cathedral, Vicolo Bonacolsi, Piazza Broletto with the medieval Palazzo del Podesta and Palazzo del Massaro and Arengario. Piazza delle Erbe is surrounded by the Palazzo della Ragione, the Clock Tower and the Saint Lorenzo Church. See the façade of the Merchant's House, Piazza Mantegna with the Basilica of Sant'Andrea built by Leon Battista Alberti and Piazza Leon Battista Alberti with the former cloister of the Sant'Andrea Monastery. No entrance tickets are needed on this city center tour, unless you’d like to visit the beautiful Bibiena Theatre where Mozart played when he was 13 years old (entrance €2). Churches close at noon and re-open at 15.00. During services entrance to visit churches is not permitted. For the Ducal Palace the entrance fee is €13. The Castle and Ducal Palace limit entrance to groups not larger than 25 people. For larger groups additional guides are needed and bookings are required in advance. On the first Sunday of every month, entrance to the Ducal Palace is free of charge, but cannot be booked in advance. As only 1,500 people per day can enter the room painted by Mantegna, on these special Sundays it may be impossible to enter that particular room.

Mantua: 2-Hour Private Walking Tour w/ a Local Guide

5. Mantua: 2-Hour Private Walking Tour w/ a Local Guide

The origins of Mantua date back to the Etruscan times, when Mantua was a god of Hades. The great Latin poet Virgil (Publius Vergilius Maro 70-10 B.C.) was born here. Visiting Mantua, walking along the old town heart is like stepping back in time. Taking part in this private walking tour led by an expert local guide, you will have the chance to explore downtown Mantua and get to know its history, the most important monuments, palaces and squares which represent the real soul of the town. You will see St. George's Castle, built by Francesco Gonzaga between 1395 and 1406, which became one of the most important examples of the Italian Renaissance when Andrea Mantegna painted the famous Camera degli Sposi (The Bridal Chamber). Your guide will take you to visit Piazza Sordello, the main and most ancient nucleus of Mantua. This is where the town was born and this square still represents the most important place in town, with its cathedral (Duomo di Mantiva), Palazzo Ducale and the other palaces dating back to the Middle Ages. Amongst the other attractions, you will also see Piazza delle Erbe (The Herbs Square), which represents the main marketplace in town since the Middle Ages. It also still hosts part of the weekly market on Thursdays. Here, you can admire the beautiful Palazzo della Ragione (the Palace of Justice) and the oldest church in town, called La Rotonda, that was built back in 1082. Ready for a tour which will leave you with a sense of astonishment and new fascinating knowledge? One final tip: you might want to bring along your camera.

Mantua: St. George's Castle & Ducal Palace Private Tour

6. Mantua: St. George's Castle & Ducal Palace Private Tour

The origins of Mantua date back to the Etruscan time, when Mantua was a god of Hades. The great Latin poet Virgil (Publius Vergilius Maro 70-10 B.C.) was born here. Visiting Mantua, walking along the old town heart is like stepping back in time. During this 2.5-hour walking tour, your expert local guide will take you to discover two of the most important building in Mantua: the Castle of St. George and the Ducal Palace. Let's start from the first one. St. George's Castle is the first historical building that welcomes the visitors as they enter the town of Mantua. Built by Francesco Gonzaga between 1395 and 1406 on the project by Bartolino da Novara, the castle was originally meant for the defense of the city, and then it became a residence of the family. After a renovation required by the marquis Ludovico II Gonzaga in 1459, the castle lost its original defensive role and became one of the most important examples of the Italian Renaissance when Andrea Mantegna painted the famous Camera degli Sposi (The Bridal Chamber). After your visit of the castle, walk to the most representative square or Mantua, Piazza Sordello, where your visit inside the Ducal Palace will start. The palace represents the main residence of the Gonzaga family, lords, marquises and finally, the dukes of the city. Under the Austrian domination with Maria Teresa of Austria, it was called Palazzo Reale (Royal Palace). Interestingly, the palace was built in different times starting from the 13th-century, first by the Bonacolsis and then by the Gonzagas. Many different parts, buildings, courts and gardens compose the palace, which you will have the chance to get to know and admire through this guided walking tour. Get ready to experience Mantua in a way you wouldn't expect. One final tip: you might want to bring along your camera.

Mantua: Astrological Mysteries Walking Tour w/ Palazzo Entry

7. Mantua: Astrological Mysteries Walking Tour w/ Palazzo Entry

Who would have thought? The city that is hastily labeled as the Cinderella of Lombardy is sprinkled everywhere with places that refer to mythological, alchemical and esoteric symbols, the likes of Turin. One need only walk a few steps through the streets of the center to find oneself immersed in a mysterious, obscure, superstitious and at times disturbing Mantua. The most esoteric place in Mantua is certainly Palazzo Te, a true concentration of esoteric symbolism and numerology. But it is not the only one. Among the city's most mysterious wonders is the Clock Tower on Piazza Erbe, whose hands not only indicate the hours of the day but also the zodiac signs, planetary hours, the days of the moon and the position of the stars. In nearby Piazza Broletto, Virgil, who became a famous magician in Naples, makes a fine display. But he was not the only Mantuan with a passion for "magic": many among the characters of the Gonzaga dynasty showed interest in the Arts, a boundless passion for hermetic Greek and Latin mythology, astrology and alchemy. Isabella d'Este certainly stands out, but Vincenzo I Gonzaga, interested in finding the philosopher's stone, was not to be outdone ... These and other esoteric tales will accompany us during the visit, which will conclude at the Falconetto Zodiac Room with predictions for 2023 of the 12 Signs by a professional astrologer. Meeting place: Casa del Rigoletto - Piazza Sordello 23 (arrive 15 minutes early) Itinerary: Piazza Castello (Ludovico II and the Bridal Chamber) - Giardino dei Semplici (Vincenzo I Gonzaga and Alchemy) - Piazza Pallone (Isabella d'Este and Astrology) - Piazza Sordello (Dante and Astrology) Piazza Broletto (Virgil and Magic) - Piazza Erbe (the Astrological Clock Tower) - Falconetto's Hall of the Zodiac Signs at Palazzo D'Arco Duration: 2.5 hours Maximum: 30 people

Mantua: Dining Experience at a Local's Home

8. Mantua: Dining Experience at a Local's Home

Immerse yourself in a private dining experience at a local's home, enjoying an exclusive show cooking and tasting authentic recipes treasured in family cookbooks passed down by real Italian "Mammas". This experience will allow you to feel the warmth of Italian hospitality as you connect with local people. You will enjoy a 4-course menu including a starter, pasta, a main course with a side dish, and dessert, with drinks included (water, selection of red and white wines from regional cellars and coffee).

Mantua: Market Tour & Meal with a Local Cook

9. Mantua: Market Tour & Meal with a Local Cook

Make a beautiful meal and a beautiful memory with a market tour and home-cooked dinner hosted by a local chef. Arrive at the home of your expert cook. Explore the market and shop like a local. Learn how to recognize the best produce. Afterward, return to your host’s home and enjoy a private cooking demonstration. Gain insight into Italian cuisine as your host reveals the secrets of her family’s cookbook. Watch as a delicious meal is prepared before your eyes. Once the food is ready, sit down at an authentic Italian dinner. Enjoy a 4-course seasonal menu including a starter, pasta, main course with a side dish, and dessert. Chat with your host as you share a delicious meal together. Enjoy a selection of red and white wines from regional cellars, as well as an after-dinner coffee. Feel the warmth of Italian hospitality as you connect with local people.

Other Sightseeing Options in Mantua

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What people are saying about Mantua

The guide, Manuela Roversi, is very good, she enchanted us with the history of Mantua and the Gonzaga family. A visit not to be missed!

Manuela was an excellent and clear guide. Very willing to explain in simple words and interact with my 10 year old son.

Great tour very interesting the historical explanation that threw us into another era. Very nice and prepared guide

Everything worked fine. Were contacted on site with WhatsApp and informed about the meeting point.

Extremely well informed creating a wonderful two hours. Provided help for subsequent tours.