Tuesday, August 16, 2011

Day two in Ferrrara :)

On our second day in Ferrara, we decided to tour the castle. It is fabulous! We saw the great kitchen, with a long row of ovens, over which the cooks of the day would prepare huge cauldrons of food to be served at various feasts. We descended into the dungeons...and were exceedingly grateful to be mere visitors! The cells for the ordinary prisoners were especially grim, dank and dark and no doubt terrifying.

The floors were very worn, making one wonder just how many prisoners walked these passageways.

Get us back up into the sun!

Of course, the duchess didn't spend her time down there, she would be more likely found in her orange garden.

The castle had its own private chapel (of course) with a beautifully frescoed (or painted?) ceiling.

Of course we climbed the Lion's Tower. It is "only" 122 stairs, no problem! Fabulous views of the city and the castle itself.

Inside the castle are several rooms with elaborately decorated ceilings...these have great huge mirrors in which you can view the art without straining your neck. How thoughtful!

After the castle, we strolled around to the cathedral museum. No photos allowed inside, so our only visual reminders are photos of the cloister.

We also decided to head along to the train station, having forgotten the day before to purchase our tickets to Milan. All ended well for our trip from Cetona to Ferrara, but we had no desire to encounter sold out trains again, so thought best to buy tickets in advance this time! Lovely stroll down Viale Cavour, which is lined with trees and so quite shaded.

On the way back, we stopped for gelato, or rather granite - flavoured ice - in my case. I had a super refreshing mix of green apple, blood orange and blackberry flavours, while mom enjoyed a limone gelato. Then we had a siesta until the most intense heat of the day passed. Mom had a nap, while I played around with my photos, and caught up on my blog entries (writing them up, to be posted when I got online again). The wifi here is a bit of a pain. I can get only an hour free wifi at a time from the hotel...is not a problem to get these hours, but I have to keep asking for another ticket each time and logging in with a new username. My alternative is to sign up for the city's free 90 minutes a day, available in various public spaces around the city, including around the castle, so just a few steps from the hotel. Which is a great thing for the city to do, but means I have to take my netbook outside to be online. Hence writing up a bunch of blog entries and posting them all at once!

After our siesta, we went for another stroll. Walking down one street, I saw this open door...it lead into a small side chapel and then opened up into a lovely church. It was quiet and peaceful and we sat for a while, until we realized they were about to start mass so we slipped out and continued on our way. This is the facade of the church, which we found out is Chiesa S. Maria della pieta e S. Gaetano dei Padri Teatini.

We made our way back to the general area of the cathedral and castle, close to home, to settle in for supper. The streets and piazzas were once again alive with people of all ages. We found a restaurant called Leon d'Oro and enjoyed a wonderful, leisurely supper while our hearts were warmed and lightened by the sights and sounds around us...


Trekcapri said...

Hi Anne, your photos brings back memories for me. I enjoyed a brief stay in Ferarra on a day trip from Venice returning from Ravenna. I saw the castle too and it was fun poking around in the dungeons and seeing all of the decorative ceilings. Agree that the mirrors were helpful. :)

From your photos it looks like a great town to base in for a few days to explore. I remember seeing a lot of bikers too in the piazzas, fun to watch the activity.

Glad that you're enjoying your visit here. Thanks so much for sharing and keep on having fun.

sandrac said...

Wonderful photos, Anne -- I really loved that castle!

Anne said...

Everytime we passed the castle (which was multiple times a day, since our hotel was right there), we marvelled at its immensity! I especially liked it at night as it looms overhead, glowing in the lights.

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