About Parma… it’s all so beautiful!!
Step out of the tourist trap! It’s time to relax with us…
The peace and tranquility of Parma
Parma is a prosperous and attractive historic town in the Emilia-Romagna region of northern Italy. It is famous for its fine cheese (parmigiano or parmesan) and ham, and this area is renowned throughout Italy as one of the best places to eat.
Parma is a surprisingly well-kept secret as far as tourism is concerned, perhaps because the comfortably-off town feels little need to advertise its charms. But the handful of visitors who arrive here will find an important art gallery, museums, frescoed churches, good shopping, charming historic lanes and of course the rich local cuisine.
Parma is a very good weekend break destination, with plenty to occupy tourists for two or three days, and some interesting excursions for a longer stay. It is not a particularly cheap town for visitors, but neither is it a rip-off, and the eating, shopping and hotels are good quality.
Parma is in the center of northern Italy with frequent trains to Bologna, Milan and other useful destinations. It even has an airport utilized, at the time of writing, by Ryanair, with flights from London.
FWT Tour CEO Angelo on our special 3 Kings foodie day! TOUR INFO
Parma tourist attractions
Locals get around on bicycles; if you want to hire a bike, there is a noleggio bici point by the Viale Toschi car park, a few minutes’ walk straight ahead from the railway station. The whole central area of Parma can be visited on foot, but it is also served by urban buses.
Restaurants, food and drink
Eating is an important activity in Parma, and the town has a range of restaurants offering good local cuisine. Parma is very proud of its culinary traditions and local produce, and tourists don’t need to be wary when choosing a restaurant here; just follow the locals. Menus will vary according to season, reflecting whichever regional specialities are at their best. You are likely to find hearty pasta dishes such as tortelli – pasta parcels filled with seasonal products such as pumpkin, potato, herbs, porcini mushrooms, and sometimes served as a tris di tortelli – a selection of three kinds doused with Parma’s fantastic, freshly grated Parmesan cheese. The real deal!
Filling, tasty potato gnocchi are also popular, and as well as the obvious Parma ham in its various incarnations. Local wines from the area around Parma, include a light frizzante golden Malvasia, Sauvignon, Real Lambrusco Brut and Red Colli di Parma.
Events and things to do
Parma’s theatre, the Teatro Regio puts on opera, dance and concert performances during the winter and spring, as well as a range of outdoor summer events. The theatre is also the principal venue for an annual festival dedicted to the composer Giuseppe Verdi.
Autumn is the liveliest time to visit Parma. As well as an annual Verdi festival in October, you’ll find a range of food festivals around the Parma area. The Festa del Prosciutto celebrates Parma’s famous ham and other local festivals are dedicated to tasty products such as porcini mushrooms. Parma’s annual Palio festival, also in the autumn, culminates in youthful relay races between competing districts of the town; the climax of a merry weekend of historical events and pageantry.