Sunday, 2 July 2017


With yesterday's travel trauma behind us, we switched gears from lakeside relaxation to University city buzz. Pavia is a city just south of Milan and is home to University of Pavia, one of the oldest Universities in the world. Our base in Pavia was an apartment rental in a 15th century building right in the historic city centre. Our purpose here was to watch Lara perform and we thought we'd stay somewhere different to Milan.

A leisurely 50m stroll from the apartment brought us to the Duomo di Pavia. In all honesty it was not the prettiest Cathedral compared to the other beautiful ones all over Italy. However, its red brick exterior could be seen peeping through the old town and apparently it was topped by the third largest dome in Italy. Construction began in 1488 but was not completed until the 19th century and as of today it still lacks its marble facade.

Duomo di Pavia

The dome can be easily seen around the old town

The dome from the inside

The happy find at the piazza outside the duomo, a Sunday market!

We continued walking towards the Ticino river to see the Ponte Coperto, a covered brick and stone arch bridge with a chapel in the middle. The original bridge was damaged during world war 2 and the current bridge is a reconstruction based on the original, parts of which can still be seen.

Ponte Coperto over the Ticino River

The chapel in the middle

The bridge is wide enough to have 2 lanes of traffic as well as pedestrian walkways

Remnants of the original bridge can be seen 

Our wander through the town gave way to visiting the many shops that had sales on! Oh happy day! We lunched at Pavia's main piazza, the Piazza della Vittoria, which made for returning back to the apartment for an afternoon siesta delightfully easy. As an aside, we noticed many many dogs here in Pavia. It seems that the dogs get taken everywhere by their owners including clothes shopping! There were at least 5 dogs in Zara with 2 nearly getting into fisticuffs but no one batted an eyelid...

Let's enjoy the sweet life like the Italians

As you do when you're wandering around Italy you come across churches. This one, I found out later is the Basilica of San Michele Maggiore dating from the 11th and 12th centuries.

Shopping time!
Our afternoon break allowed us to deal with our laundry before commencing our evening plans. Pizza by the Duomo was followed by one of the greatest challenges we have faced on our trip thus far...ordering a taxi with high school Italian that had almost all but disappeared from the memory banks. We did manage to book one which whisked us to the local church at Bressana Bottarone 30 minutes from Pavia.

The girls performed beautifully and they sounded amazing in the gorgeous acoustics of the Italian church. It was also very nice to see the Italians being so appreciative of the music. The girls received a standing ovation from the packed church and performed an encore. From there, it was a nervous 20 minute wait to see if the taxi operator understood our taxi order (it was 11pm at night!) and relief came when apparently my broken Italian must have made some sort of sense! We returned safely to our apartment and plan to sleep in...

The earlier markets had given way to tables set out for dinner diners

Finally pizza!

Basilica di San Giovanni at Bressana Bottarone

Singing like angels!

No comments:

Post a Comment