Seventy-two hours in Modena

Seventy-two hours in Modena

Three days for new and exciting experiences.
Means of transport

If you have three days, you can get up close with one of the most beautiful cities in Emilia-Romagna.

Treat yourself to a long weekend (Friday to Sunday) amidst art, culture, tradition, and much more.

We can suggest the right excursion for you!

What follow are several options for a three-day visit to Modena and the surrounding area as you explore its most inspiring sites and its grand artistic and cultural heritage.


Start your long weekend in Modena with a visit to one of the places that is most emblematic of the city: the Enzo Ferrari Museum. You’ll recognize it by its yellow dome, which resembles the hood of a giant car.

On sunny days, this ultra-modern aluminum roof contrasts with the blue of the sky, celebrating the colors of the city. If you love cars, read about our excursion to Motor Valley.

At lunch time, enjoy fine Emilian cuisine in one of the many restaurants and agrotourism facilities in the area.

If you are driving with your family, you might want to spend a few hours discovering some of the beautiful nearby castles and villages. Only a few kilometers from Modena you’ll find the Formigine Castle, the Rocca in Vignola, the Salse di Nirano Nature Reserve in Fiorano, the Spezzano Castle, the village of Castelvetro, the Levizzano Castle, the welcoming historic center and Museum of Balsamic Vinegar in Spilamberto, the Renaissance gem of the town of Carpi, Nonantola with its Romanesque-style abbey, and many other villages and places of interest.

However you spend your time, a great way to end the day is with a visit to one of the many area vinegar cellars for a tasting of balsamic vinegar, the “black gold" of Modena, or to a winery to raise a toast with a fine glass of Lambrusco.


Saturday: A trip through time

The day begins early with a visit to the Umberto Panini collection at the Modena Maserati Museum, just outside of town. The collection includes one of the most complete series of vintage Maseratis in the world.

Not only will you have a chance to immerse yourself in the captivating atmosphere of Maserati automobiles, you can also discover everything you’d ever wanted to know about the production of Parmigiano-Reggiano cheese. The Panini Collection is housed in one of the many local factories where Parmigiano-Reggiano cheese is made.

Your fascinating morning continues with two other not-to-be-missed stops.

Only a few minutes from the Panini Collection is the Luciano Pavarotti House and Museum.

Once you’re ready to move on from there, we suggest a visit to MuSa, The Villani Museum of Salumeria (Museum of Charcuterie) in Castelnuovo Rangone, or to the Ferrari Museum in Maranello, where the Ferrari myth lives on.

After a farmhouse lunch, return to Modena’s historical center. In the afternoon, you can join one of the guided tours we offer through our Tourist Office, an excellent opportunity to get to know the city more intimately and especially to experience its architectural gems: the Modena Cathedral, the Ghirlandina Tower, and Piazza Grande, together designated a UNESCO World Heritage Site.

Next is a trip to the unique collections of the Museo della Figurina (a museum dedicated to illustrated and collectible cards, including stickers, postcards and sports cards, advertisements, matchboxes, calendars and more) sponsored by the Modena Foundation for the Visual Arts and founded with the private collection of Giuseppe Panini.


Sunday: The House of Este

After breakfast, your Sunday morning becomes a voyage of discovery as you explore the history of the Este Duchy through a guided tour of the Ducal Palace, home of the dukes for more than two centuries and today the seat of the impressive Military Academy.

Don’t forget that online reservations for Palace tours are required no later than the Wednesday before your visit. Find out how to reserve tickets at the bottom of this page.

After you’ve explored the Ducal Palace, why not spend a few moments in the nearby Ducal Gardens? Relax on a shaded bench or take a walk along the paths to admire the beautiful flowers, plants, and trees. Once you’ve worked up an appetite, it’s time for lunch in another of the city's restaurants.

After lunch, head to the Palazzo dei Musei where you can spend the rest of the afternoon admiring the masterpieces of the Estense Gallery. (Check out our suggested excursion to the Palazzo dei Musei.)

In addition to the Estense Gallery, the Palazzo dei Musei houses a number of cultural institutions that may interest you. The visit does take some time, so it’s a good idea to plan where you’d like to go before you get there. You’ll find that the hours pass quickly among the Gallery’s collections of illuminated books and manuscripts, paintings, and sculpture.

A visit to the Ducal Palace of Sassuolo and a relaxing pause at the Salvarola Hot Springs are one way to bring your Modena weekend to a perfect close!

If you have only two full weekend days available rather than three, consult our “Forty-Eight Hours in Modena” excursion.

For any questions, or if you need additional advice to plan your visit to Modena, call or write us. We’ll be glad to help.


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If you have doubts, questions or are simply looking for some more advice to plan your visit to Modena, call or write us, we will be happy to help you.