Palazzo della Pilotta


Looming over the manicured lawns and modern fountains of Piazza della Pace, this monumental palace is hard to miss. Supposedly named after the Spanish ball game of pelota that was once played within its walls, it was originally built for the Farnese family between 1583 and 1622. Heavily bombed in WWII, it has since been largely rebuilt and today houses three museums: Galleria Nazionale, Museo Archeologico Nazionale and Teatro Farnese.

Lonely Planet's must-see attractions

Nearby Parma attractions

1. Teatro Farnese

0.04 MILES

Rebuilt to original plans after WWII bombing, this stunning theatre is almost entirely made out of wood. The great Monteverdi, frustrated by the theatre's…

2. Galleria Nazionale

0.06 MILES

The Galleria Nazionale displays Parma’s main art collection in dark and ambiently affective environs. Alongside works by local artists Correggio and…

3. Museo Archeologico Nazionale

0.07 MILES

The Museo Archeologico Nazionale exhibits Roman artefacts discovered around Parma, Etruscan finds from the Po valley and a small but fascinating exhibit…

4. Pinacoteca Stuard

0.14 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…

5. Chiesa di Santa Maria della Steccata


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…

6. Museo Diocesano

0.21 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…

7. Piazza del Duomo

0.22 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.

8. Battistero

0.23 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…