Mantova is a lovely town and is well worth a visit. There is a strong medieval feel to the town and it is generally very well preserved. There are not too many tourists but the many fashionable shops bare witness to the town’s prosperity. In 2008 it was included in the UNESCO list of world cultural heritage, as it is a unique example of how a medieval town has been transformed by Renaissance ideals. The city is surrounded by three lakes (or real parts of the river Mincio), and during summer there are many boat tours that you can take.
Palazzo Ducale is the town’s main attraction and is an imposing palace on a beautiful piazza – taking you back to the Middle Ages. Palazzo Ducale spreads over an area of ??34,000 square meters and houses no less than 500 rooms. The palace today functions as a museum and should be seen! The city's cathedral in front of Palazzo Ducale is also worth a visit.
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Mantova has lots of good cafés and restaurants in its ancient buildings with outdoor seating in it's vibrant town centre. Mantova is also known for its cuisine (especially pumpkin) and not least for the annual literary festival, which takes place in September. During this period, the streets are full when national and international writers meet their readers in the city's many pubs.