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Feltre

Feltre boasts ancient origins, starting from the Reti population that joined the Roman Empire in the first century BC, when the city also became municipium. Then the Lombards here and the various noble Venetians who ruled the area until the arrival of the Venetian rule in 1504. Despite the hardships that the city had to deal with, in particular the terrible fire set by the army of the Emperor Maximilian of Hapsburg, that completely destroyed the town in 1509, in Feltre you can discover many artifacts and monuments of great interest.

The access to the old town is through one of the three gates of the city "Porta Imperiale" (Imperial door) which is the entrance to Via Mezzaterra southwards, Porta Oria door northwards and Porta Pusterla door that overlooks the cathedral. The walls that protect the historic center were expanded at the end of the fifteenth century and you can now walk along them thanks to the opening of the ancient "Way of the Sentinel" route.

Climbing on top of the "Colle delle Capre" (hill of goats), on which is perched the old town, you'll find Piazza Maggiore square overlooked by palaces of different ages, the church of St. Rocco and Sebastiano, the Palazzo della Ragione (Reason Palace) inside of which lies the Sena theatre, also called little "Fenice" because it was designed by the same architect of the famous Venetian theater, Giannantonio Selva, the Coats of Arms room and the Castle of Alboino.
From the square, reachable by elevator, you can walk along roads and alleys overlooked by frescoed palaces, elegant mullioned windows, stone balconies and admire stunning urban views.

Feltre is also city of museums, with three palaces that house the Carlo Rizzarda Gallery of Modern Art, the Civic Museum and the Diocesan Museum of Sacred Art in the ancient bishop's palace, all full of art treasures by artists not only from Feltre.

On the southern slopes of the hill of the goats rises the cathedral with its baptistery. Under the churchyard you can visit the archeological site of 1000 square meters, excavated by the Archeological Superintendence of the Veneto region, which preserves the evidences of the oldest phases of the life in the city: a part of an urban district in the Roman center of Feltria.

In the city center, there is the seat of the National Park of the Belluno Dolomites. Nearby Feltre, numerous villas characterize the area, as the eighteenth-century Villa Guarnieri in Tomo with the adjacent church of St. Joseph and Villa Lusa in Villabruna, built on the ruins of a medieval castle.

Worth a visit is the Sanctuary of the Saints Vittore and Corona, patrons of the city, a jewel of Romanesque art with Byzantine influence. The sanctuary was an important center of pilgrimage in the past, while today it is the starting and finishing point of the "Way of the Dolomites", a circular route that embraces the whole province.

For nature lovers and families, the Vincheto di Cellarda natural reserve offers the opportunity to see up close typical wildlife of the Prealps and of the Dolomites such as eagle owls, hares, wild boars and a large number of deers, roe deers and fallow deers that you can meet during walks or horse back rides.

During the summer, Feltre comes to life thanks to many events including the "Mostra dell'Artgianato" (craft exhibition) at the end of June, which allows visitors to get into many private palaces of the historic center otherwise closed and admire the craftsmen at work. In August takes place the Palio, with horse racing, contests of strength and parades in historical clothing, where the four districts of the town (Castello, Duomo, Port'Oria and Santo Stefano) challenge each other to commemorate the commitment of Feltre to the Republic of Venice.

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Feltre, Diocesan Museum of Sacred Art (photo G. Maggiolo)
Feltre, palio - flag-flyers
Feltre, Sanctuary of Saints Vitttore and Corona (Photo C. Quaglianello)
Feltre, wrought-iron works by Carlo Rizzarda
Feltre, palio (Photo Agenzia Obiettivo)
Feltre, piazza Maggiore (Photo G. Maggiolini)
Feltre, La Sena Theatre (Pfoto P. Cibien)
Feltre, arrivo delle Scalette Vecchie in Piazza Maggiore (foto Rivier De Mari)
Arsie' (foto Rivier De Mari)

Feltre

View over Feltre from Mt. Tomatico (photo by Osvaldo Vecellio)

Feltre boasts ancient origins, starting from the Reti population that joined the Roman Empire in the first century BC, when the city also became municipium. Then the Lombards here and the various noble Venetians who ruled the area until the arrival of the Venetian rule in 1504. Despite the hardships that the city had to deal with, in particular the terrible fire set by the army of the Emperor Maximilian of Hapsburg, that completely destroyed the town in 1509, in Feltre you can discover many artifacts and monuments of great interest.

The access to the old town is through one of the three gates of the city "Porta Imperiale" (Imperial door) which is the entrance to Via Mezzaterra southwards, Porta Oria door northwards and Porta Pusterla door that overlooks the cathedral. The walls that protect the historic center were expanded at the end of the fifteenth century and you can now walk along them thanks to the opening of the ancient "Way of the Sentinel" route.

Climbing on top of the "Colle delle Capre" (hill of goats), on which is perched the old town, you'll find Piazza Maggiore square overlooked by palaces of different ages, the church of St. Rocco and Sebastiano, the Palazzo della Ragione (Reason Palace) inside of which lies the Sena theatre, also called little "Fenice" because it was designed by the same architect of the famous Venetian theater, Giannantonio Selva, the Coats of Arms room and the Castle of Alboino.
From the square, reachable by elevator, you can walk along roads and alleys overlooked by frescoed palaces, elegant mullioned windows, stone balconies and admire stunning urban views.

Feltre is also city of museums, with three palaces that house the Carlo Rizzarda Gallery of Modern Art, the Civic Museum and the Diocesan Museum of Sacred Art in the ancient bishop's palace, all full of art treasures by artists not only from Feltre.

On the southern slopes of the hill of the goats rises the cathedral with its baptistery. Under the churchyard you can visit the archeological site of 1000 square meters, excavated by the Archeological Superintendence of the Veneto region, which preserves the evidences of the oldest phases of the life in the city: a part of an urban district in the Roman center of Feltria.

In the city center, there is the seat of the National Park of the Belluno Dolomites. Nearby Feltre, numerous villas characterize the area, as the eighteenth-century Villa Guarnieri in Tomo with the adjacent church of St. Joseph and Villa Lusa in Villabruna, built on the ruins of a medieval castle.

Worth a visit is the Sanctuary of the Saints Vittore and Corona, patrons of the city, a jewel of Romanesque art with Byzantine influence. The sanctuary was an important center of pilgrimage in the past, while today it is the starting and finishing point of the "Way of the Dolomites", a circular route that embraces the whole province.

For nature lovers and families, the Vincheto di Cellarda natural reserve offers the opportunity to see up close typical wildlife of the Prealps and of the Dolomites such as eagle owls, hares, wild boars and a large number of deers, roe deers and fallow deers that you can meet during walks or horse back rides.

During the summer, Feltre comes to life thanks to many events including the "Mostra dell'Artgianato" (craft exhibition) at the end of June, which allows visitors to get into many private palaces of the historic center otherwise closed and admire the craftsmen at work. In August takes place the Palio, with horse racing, contests of strength and parades in historical clothing, where the four districts of the town (Castello, Duomo, Port'Oria and Santo Stefano) challenge each other to commemorate the commitment of Feltre to the Republic of Venice.





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