Gonzaga's Residences tour. Mantua owes its beautiful Renaissance monuments to the Gonzaga Lords, who ruled the Mantuan Duchy for almost four centuries, and during their reign they made the city into a Court of grand splendor. The Gonzaga loved both luxury and power, and they lived in somptuous residences such as the huge Palazzo Ducale, their royal residence and the amazing Palazzo Te, intended as place of leisure and pleasure. The Ducal Palace with the gorgeous “Bridal Chamber” by Mantegna and the Te Palace by Giulio Romano’s genius, are some magnificent residences built by the Gonzagas, and an absolute must-see.
Mantova Palazzo Ducale Walking Tour (2 hours)The Ducal Palace was the official and most significant residence of the Gonzaga Lords during their long rule. The guided tour of the present National Museum of Palazzo Ducale offers the visit of magnificent rooms, complex structures connected by corridors and galleries, squares, courtyards and several gardens. With more than 500 rooms it’s among the most extensive aristocratic palaces in Europe. It houses masterpieces of the 15th and 16th centuries such as Mantegna’s Bridal Chamber in the Castel of San Giorgio, the Hall of King Arthur’s Knights by Pisanello, the Isabella d’Este Apartment with its precious cabinetry works in the Old Court, Raphael’s complete cycle of woven Flemish tapestries, the Hall of Rivers close to a rare hanging garden, and the amazing Hall of Mirrors.Mantua Palazzo Te Walking Tour (2 hours) The Palazzo Te visit is dedicated to duke Federico Renaissance summer villa, a master-work designed and decorated by architect Giulio Romano, who was Raphael’s most talented pupil. During our guided tour we’ll understand how much this residence is an embodiment of Gonzaga's desire for sensuality and struggle for power. The rooms are rife with frescos narrating mythological stories of passion, love, showing naked gods and goddesses, just in the licentious Chamber of Psyche and Cupid, consecrated to womanizer Federico Gonzaga and his beloved mistress Isabella Boschetti. We’ll enter the outstanding Hall of the Horses, used as official reception hall and the impressive Room of the Giants, celebrating the emperor’s supremacy. Now we'll be captured by the theatrical illusionist scene all around us with the defeated Titans striking by Jupiter's fury.