Parma, the Basilica Cathedra inside, view of the dome with the fresco of the Assumption of the Virgin executed by Correggio

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Top choice in Parma

Another daring Romanesque beauty? Well, yes and no. Consecrated in 1106, Parma has a classic Lombard-Romanesque facade, but inside, the gilded pulpit and ornate lamp-holders scream baroque. Take note: there are some genuine treasures here. Up in the dome, Antonio da Correggio's Assunzione della Vergine (Assumption of the Virgin) is a kaleidoscopic swirl of cherubs and whirling angels, while in the southern transept, Benedetto Antelami's Deposizione (Descent from the Cross; 1178) relief is considered a masterpiece of its type.

Lonely Planet's must-see attractions

Nearby Parma attractions

1. Piazza del Duomo

0.03 MILES

Flanked by a harmonious trio of buildings – the duomo, campanile and baptistry – Parma's cathedral square is one of the city's most elegant public spaces.

2. Battistero

0.04 MILES

Overshadowing even the cathedral, the octagonal pink-marble baptistery on the south side of the piazza is one of the most important such structures in…

3. Museo Diocesano

0.04 MILES

On the other side of the square to the duomo, in the cellars of the former bishop's palace, this museum displays statuary. Highlights include a finely…

5. Pinacoteca Stuard

0.11 MILES

Giuseppe Stuard was a 19th-century Parmese art collector who amassed 600 years worth of epoch-defining art linking the Tuscan masters of the 1300s to…

6. La Casa del Suono

0.13 MILES

Housed in the 17th-century Chiesa di Santa Elisabetta is this funky modern museum that focuses on the history of music technology. Review the 'ancient'…

7. Palazzo del Governatore

0.18 MILES

With its dramatic tower and a giant sundial added in 1829, this 17th-century palazzo dominates the north side of Piazza Garibaldi, Parma's central square…

8. Chiesa di Santa Maria della Steccata

0.18 MILES

Behind the Palazzo del Governatore in the Chiesa di Santa Maria della Steccata, you’ll find some of Parmigianino’s most extraordinary work, notably the…