5 things to do in Brescia in autumn

A jewel encrusted with historical, cultural, and food&wine gems: Brescia, the city you are not expecting, is ready to enchant you with its magic and unforgettable highlights. What’s going on during the autumn season in Brescia? Here are suggestions on the best things to do!

1. Dive in the city’s history

A Longobard city boasting numerous historical sites that have been listed as UNESCO World Heritage Sites: this is enough to make Brescia a city to be admired.

Brescia, Museo di Santa Giulia

You can start by enjoying a relaxing stroll along the alleys of the old centre: we suggest you start from the three main squares, which are connected by a series of pedestrian walkways and are just a few minutes’ walk away from each other:

  1. Piazza Paolo VI (formerly Piazza Duomo), the square with the two cathedrals and Broletto Palace;
  2. Piazza Vittoria, built to the design of architect and urban planner Marcello Piacentini;
  3. Piazza Loggia, seat of Brescia’s city council and surrounded by 16th-century buildings.

Once you’ve finished visiting the squares, indulge in some shopping under the arcades of Via X Giornate, Corso Zanardelli and the surrounding streets: you will find stores for all tastes!

And here we are now, face to face with history: from the historic centre, head to Via dei Musei to admire Roman Brescia Archaeological Park, a UNESCO heritage site as well as the largest Roman archaeological area in northern Italy.

Parco Archeologico Brescia Romana, Credits: FeboFilms
Parco Archeologico Brescia Romana, Credits: FeboFilms

It’s an evocative view which takes us back in time: the Capitolium area, now enriched by the presence of the Winged Victory, was the focal point of ancient Brescia together with the Roman Theatre and Piazza del Foro. Nothing to envy Pompei!

Also not to be missed is the Roman Sanctuary, located under the Capitoline Temple, and a little further on Via dei Musei, the Monastic Complex of Santa Giulia – San Salvatore, now home to Santa Giulia Museum, whose exhibits every year attract millions of tourists from all over the world.

2. Enjoy an exceptional view of the city

From Via dei Musei, take one of the uphill alleys and in a few minutes you’ll reach Brescia’s Castle, a fortress built around the 13th century.

Castello di BresciaThe Castle is open daily and houses the Luigi Marzoli Arms Museum and two model railways. Climb to the top and get ready to admire the city from every angle: Monte Maddalena to the southwest, the dome of the Duomo, the modern skyscrapers of Brescia Due, and the hinterland towns on the horizon.

At the perfect time to admire the sunset and contemplate the beauty of the autumn colours, end your Castle visit at one of the two bars just outside the walls and celebrate this romantic moment by toasting with a glass of Franciacorta, one of the finest local wines in Italy.

And if you love to immerse yourself in the magic of autumn parks, don’t miss a trip to Parco Ducos!

3. Indulge in typical seasonal dishes

Brescian cuisine finally has the recognition it deserves: the area between Bergamo, Cremona, Mantua, and Brescia – the so-called “East Lombardy” – has indeed been recognised as the European Region of Gastronomy 2017, a project that integrates culture, tourism, and gastronomy as a way to promote typical local products and short supply chain.

Cena tipica, BresciaLet’s get into the flavours: what are the typical autumn dishes that Brescia’s cuisine offers? The 3 big “must-haves” on the autumn table of the Lombard city are manzo all’olio (beef in olive oil), spiedo bresciano and polenta (skewered meat), and casoncelli (stuffed pasta), accompanied by the red wines of our region (Capriano del Colle, Garda Bresciano, Cellatica).

And if you are a cheese lover, you cannot go home without tasting the pride of Brescia’s dairy production: Bagòss from Bagolino, a Slow Food presidium, Silter DOP, Fatulì, Nostrano Valtrompia DOP, Rosa Camuna, formaggella di Tremosine, and of course Grana Padana DOP.

Aperitivo a Brescia

And between a relaxing walk and some shopping, how can you not indulge in a nice Pirlo, the typical Brescian aperitif?

4. Visit exclusive exhibitions in the city

Every year, Fondazione Brescia Musei offers interesting exhibitions that bring the most renowned artists and cultural representatives to our city.

Visita al Museo di Santa Giulia, Brescia
In addition to the permanent exhibitions housed at the civic museums – Pinacoteca Tosio Martinengo art gallery, Santa Giulia Museum, “Luigi Marzoli” Arms Museum – in autumn 2022 don’t miss “Isgrò cancella Brixia” with the Sicilian master’s works of art on display along a traveling route that winds from the Capitolium temple to Santa Giulia Museum and the Viridarium gardens!

5. Discover the beauty of Casa Museo Zani

Just a short distance from Brescia, another gem awaits us. It’s Casa Museo Zani in Cellatica, a prestigious mansion that preserves more than 1,200 works including precious Baroque and Rococo furnishings, magnificent applied art from the 17th and 18th centuries, and extraordinary paintings by Canaletto, Tiepolo, Guardi, Longhi, Boucher and other master painters.

Casa Museo Zani Brescia - collezione
The experience is enriched by the elegant garden, with its unique collection of 850 mainly French, Roman and Venetian Baroque works of art and rare tree species, artfully pruned plants, and antique sculptures. The path that winds among sculptures, fountains, and architectural elements is striking and in perfect dialogue with the surrounding nature and wonderful water features. Brescia, a city to discover, an endless wonder!