Oh my gosh you guys, we are down to the 2nd to last port of call on our Adriatic cruise from last November. Today we’re visiting Ravenna, Italy.
We woke to find a beautiful sunrise that we could admire from our balcony.
This is yet another place that I had never heard of before. The main draw in Ravenna are the churches and their Byzantine mosaics, many of which are UNESCO World Heritage sites.
You can buy a combination ticket to visit the top 5 sites, and the route between them is easily covered on foot.
One thing to note if you ever end up in Ravenna via cruise ship, the port is quite far from the city center. This was also a rare occasion where there were no taxis or other locals waiting just outside the gates at the port to take passengers on tours either. There was absolutely nothing nearby. Fortunately our ship offered a shuttle to town for $26 per person.
Once off the shuttle it was an easy walk to the ticket office to purchase the combo admission ticket.
Now, I have a bit of a confession to make. Our visit to Ravenna was over 3 months ago and when I look at my photos and the map … well … I’m not sure which place is which and they all look rather similar. So rather than give you any specific details on each place I’m just going to say that if you ever find yourself in Ravenna you should definitely visit all five of the top sites (and more if you have time, because there are more).
Some say the mosaics in Ravenna are the finest examples of Byzantine art outside of Istanbul, and they definitely were stunning.
The colors were so vibrant, and the magnitude of scale was incredible.
The level of detail is mind boggling. Remember, these are made with tiny, little tiles.
There are also several painted ceilings.
And finally, when your neck has had enough of looking up at ceilings, you can head back outdoors and admire the architecture … but, oh wait, that mostly requires looking up too.
Well, not entirely.
You could just wander the cobblestone streets and admire the buildings too.
Or you can do a little shopping, there was plenty of it to be found. In fact, this is the spot where we saw so many ‘Black Friday’ sale signs which totally took me by surprise (since Thanksgiving is not an Italian holiday).
I guess the moral to my story is that a visit to Ravenna may also require a visit to your masseuse to cure your stiff neck afterwards. But it was well worth it. Next week we’ll be visiting our last port of call, Venice. Although I already shared our morning tour of the velvet workshop, I still have more to share from Venice. So if you are enjoying these Wednesday travel posts, be sure to check back next week!