Brescia is the second most important city in Lombardy after Milan, as well as being one of the Italian provinces with the largest extension where about one million inhabitants reside.
The most important and characteristic monuments and places of Brescia are:
- Loggia Square
- Victory Square
- Piazza dei Due Duomi
- Museum of Santa Giulia
In the heart of the city are the monumental remains of ancient Brixia. The Capitolium, built in 73 B.C. was dedicated to the cult of Jupiter, Juno and Minerva. After a very important restoration work here is exposed the Winged Victory, bronze statue of the first century of B.C., found in abandonment in 1826 between two walls of the temple. Next to the Capitolium stands the Roman Theater of the I-III century of B.C. The Archaeological Park of Brescia Romana has been inscribed since 2011 in the List of World Heritage promoted by UNESCO.
Loggia Square is one of the meeting places of the city and the most beautiful business card to admire the Venetian style of Brescia, when it was dominated by the Serenissima. This square, built in the mid-fifteenth century, stands on the site of a medieval market and houses some of the most beautiful and historic buildings in the city. The loggia from which the square takes its name is the unmistakable white building with three arches and the dome in the shape of a hull, which dominates a large façade of richly carved white marble. Built in 1492, today it is the seat of the offices of the municipal council. On the opposite side of the loggia is the Clock Tower, built in 1540 and famous for the Màccde le Ure (the mads of the hours), the two bronze statues that every hour hit the bell. In addition to the memorial plaque, a series of tiles in the street that leads from the Square to the Castle recalls the terrorist attack of 28th May 1974, in which a bomb killed 8 people and injured 102.
Victory Square was inaugurated in 1932 according to the new fascist urban plan. To the north is the Palazzo delle Poste; to the west stands for 60 meters one of the first skyscrapers in Italy (Torrione INA) while to the east the Tower of the Revolution.
In Piazza dei Due Duomi, as it is better known Piazza Paolo VI, overlook the two cathedrals of the city: the Summer Cathedral of Santa Maria Assunta, the new cathedral, and the Winter Co-Cathedral of Santa Maria Assunta, the old cathedral. The square also houses the Palazzo del Broletto with its unmistakable crenellated stone tower: the oldest public building in the city, built starting from 1200.
The Museum of Santa Giulia is unique in Italy because it stands in place of the female monastery of S. Giulia and contains a Lombard Basilica, a church of the ‘500 and the remains of the Roman domus. This museum testifies to the daily, artistic and spiritual life of Brescia from prehistoric times to the present, with 11,000 exhibits. The whole area was included in 2011 in the World Heritage Site by UNESCO. The visit starts from the ground floor, where the domus dell’Ortaglia are located, with perfectly preserved mosaic floors: they are houses from the Roman era, from the first to the fourth century of B.C., and overlook a vegetable garden and a garden. The Lombard church of San Salvatore is one of the most important Lombard buildings ever and was built in 753 B.C. by King Desiderio as a symbol of his monarchy. Then we visit the church of Santa Maria in Solario, the oratory of the nuns, who from here secretly attended the functions. Upstairs the room is all frescoed, from the vault of stars to the scenes on the walls. Here is the Cross of Desiderius, a cross of the ninth century of B.C. with Lombard and Roman decorations and 212 gems.