Guided Walk Through Ravenna – from City Center
- Mausoleum of Galla Placidia: Visit the world's earliest and best-preserved mosaic monument, its dome a deep blue sky literally glittering with stars and scenes in moss-green, Roman gold, peacock-blue and burnt orange.
- Basilica of San Vitale: An undisputed masterpiece of Byzantine architecture, this octagonal structure was consecrated in 547. Its standout mosaics include a clean-shaven Christ, and its beauty inspired Charlemagne to build the first great church of northern Europe in Aachen.
- Dante's tomb: In 1321, poet Dante Alighieri, author of The Divine Comedy and father of the Italian language, died in exile from his native Florence. You'll visit his austere mausoleum, tucked along a narrow Ravenna side street.
- Basilica of Sant’Apollinare Nuovo: Built in the 6th century by the great Goth king Theodoric, it houses Ravenna's largest surviving mosaic work – a showy procession of Virgins, Magi (Persian Priests), and Martyrs richly adorned with pearls and precious stones.
About This Ravenna Tour
There's one very good reason why UNESCO has named eight Ravenna sites to its World Heritage List; dazzling mosaic artistry. The fact is, this city experienced its personal golden age during the peak of Byzantine-era mosaic-making.
As a result, the city's 1500-year-old churches and monuments are adorned with the most impressive glittering stone-and-glass inlay work this side of Constantinople. Outside, most the buildings are quiet, unassuming brick. But step inside, and wow – the magnificence is hard to describe in words, but sure to delight all who view it.
This inspiring iconography has been doing just that for centuries – drawing famous artists, writers, and other cultural heavyweights to Ravenna like a magnet. Dante Aligheri and Lord Byron, Henry James and Oscar Wilde, Sigmund Freud, Hermann Hesse, Gustav Klimt and plenty more.
They all saw something irresistible here, and you'll get a good glimpse of it yourself as your locally savvy guide escorts the group in and out of Ravenna's top landmarks, filling you in on the who's who and what's what of their background.
The city's cobbled historic district is virtually car-free (plenty of bikes though, so do need to keep an eye out for two-wheelers) and compact enough to be seen fully on a comfortable walking excursion like this one.
One thing's for sure: you'll probably want to do some serious retiling at home once you get a look at how the Byzantines decorated their interiors.
Good luck finding guys who know how to do that kind of work today.
Medieval girl power
Sharing the Basilica di San Vitale's walls with a young, beardless Christ are mosaics of the great Byzantine emperor Justinian and his haloed empress Theodora. Many centuries before it was politically fashionable, this progressively-minded showgirl from Constantinople is credited with influencing reforms that expanded women’s rights. Justinian's most trusted advisor, she also had him wrapped around her little finger.
Please meet in the lobby/reception area of your hotel. Be sure to indicate the name of your hotel at check-out�or email Hello@GoBe.com so we know where to meet you. Your guide will be holding a sign with your name on it.
Some shops are closed from 1-3 pm and all day on Sundays. Viva la siesta. The sun is very strong, be sure you are well protected. A small backpack may be useful for all your purchases.
Expect approx. 1.5 miles of walking, over cobblestones and up/down hilly streets, with some steps to climb. Tour is not wheelchair accessible. If your mobility is limited, you may not see all the sites fully. Participate with the group at your discretion.
Cultural, Scenic, Walking Tour, Family Friendly, Shopping
Tour Participation Requirements
This experience is rated strenuous. Travelers must consider their physical fitness level and medical history when determining whether this tour is appropriate. Travelers with pre-existing neck, back, knee and/or shoulder injuries, cardiac conditions, asthma, diabetes, epilepsy, other heart or respiratory conditions or any other medical condition must take particular caution when selecting a tour categorized as "strenuous". If you have concerns, you must consult with your personal physician before engaging in any activity that may be too strenuous for you.
Suitable for all ages.
Full refunds issued for cancellations made 7 full days prior to the date and time of requested services. Cancellations made within the 7-day and 72-hour window will receive a 50% refund of purchase total. Purchases are non-refundable inside of 72 hours.
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