“Who among you has not studied the poem “the Infinite” by Giacomo Leopardi? Today we discover together where the infamous “ermo colle” was situated. Here are the best things to see and do in Recanati in a day or more!
The medieval town of Recanati plays a fundamental role in Le Marche, and not only. Famous throughout Italy as the birthplace of the great poet Giacomo Leopardi, every glimpse of it contains a piece of its history. There are many things to see in Recanati, but it is possible to visit it all in a weekend.
But where is Recanati? Given its strategic location halfway between the sea and the interior of the Marche region, with a holiday lasting several days you can travel around Recanati and the surrounding area. This is to discover the beauty of an area rich in tourist attractions and points of interest, such as the cities of Macerata and Ancona and all the seaside resorts of the Conero Riviera.
Art cities such as Ancona and Loreto are essential destinations for art lovers. The latter is also important for religious tourism, given the presence of the majestic sanctuary of the Black Madonna. On the other hand, Macerata and Porto Recanati are the fulcrum of nightlife and entertainment, the former for its university atmosphere and the latter for its numerous clubs and bathing establishments.
If I have made you even more curious, all you have to do is continue to follow me in this article to discover all the beauties you will admire when visiting Recanati!
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Poetry, art and music: things to do in Recanati
Giacomo Leopardi’s great bond with the city allows tourists to visit Recanati and find a piece of his history and works in every corner, street or panorama. The village is therefore an open-air museum, where even the cobblestones have a story to tell.
The great tenor Beniamino Gigli was also a native of the village. So what should you see in Recanati to discover the story of this illustrious person? Certainly the Gigli Museum, the Aula Magna containing the Gigli piano, and finally his tomb.
For those who love history and art, what to see in Recanati? The origins of the town date back to the Middle Ages and can be seen in the characteristic architecture of the old town and its streets. The ancient Amanuensis art was born at that time, with its headquarters at the Malleus Castle. Here there is a small workshop that still produces maps of various kinds, according to ancient tradition.
Our trip to Recanati must also include a food and wine itinerary that follows the ancient peasant culinary tradition through a tasting of a variety of meat and fish dishes as well as more “homemade” first courses, always paired with a good glass of wine from the Macerata area.
What to see in Recanati in a day or more?
The town offers numerous attractions that make it possible to visit it in one or more days. Visiting Recanati allows tourists to immerse themselves in a multicultural journey that gratifies the pleasure of discovery in all its facets.
Lovers of the great poet will be delighted to visit the places of his memory, but art lovers in general will not be disappointed either! Here are the most important things to see in Recanati!
1. The historical centre
The medieval imprint of the town can be seen mainly in its historic centre, which is full of points of interest. To visit Recanati from all points of view, the tour must begin at Piazza Giacomo Leopardi, named by the townspeople to celebrate the 100th anniversary of his birth.
The Town Hall was also inaugurated on this occasion. The neoclassical building contains numerous rooms, each of which tells its own story: from the “Oliviero Pigini” guitar museum to the Hall of Coats of Arms and the famous Aula Magna. Here, as well as containing Gigli’s piano, the poet Giosuè Carducci gave one of his most famous commemorative speeches in 1898.
Next to the Palace stands a symbol of the city and of the poet’s memories, since the sound of its bells was associated with one of his moments of despair and unhappiness. This is the Torre del Borgo, built as a symbol of the union of several castles in the present-day municipality of Recanati. Of Ghibelline origin, its walls bear the coat of arms of the municipality of Fermo as a sign of alliance, a white stone clock, a plaque to the war dead and a relief depicting the translation of the Holy House of Loreto.
2. Giacomo Leopardi’s places
What to see in Recanati if you want to learn more about his life? Practically everything! The countless monuments and places scattered throughout the town, which have remained intact to this day, tell a piece of its fragile history.
The Palazzo Comunale also houses the Sale Leopardiane (Leopardi Rooms), where letters written during his youth are kept. But to relive his adolescence at its best, it is possible to visit the homes of the protagonists directly. We therefore find Casa Leopardi, the place where the young poet spent most of his childhood, mainly in the majestic Library. It was the place the poet frequented most during his stay in the house, as it contains twenty thousand volumes that were fundamental to his studies. In front of the house we find the house of his lost lover Silvia, born Teresa Fattorini. Inside, in addition to the few rooms furnished with period furniture, it is possible to see the window where the two young people used to look at each other.
Below his house is the “Piazzola del Sabato del Villaggio”, made famous by the poem of the same name. Another place of worship is the Complesso di Sant’Agostino. As well as containing numerous 15th-century frescoes, it is home to the “Tower of the Lonely Sparrow“, the protagonist of one of his greatest works.
Last but not least, we find the Parco Letterario Giacomo Leopardi. It is home to the infamous Colle dell’Infinito (Hill of the Infinite), the highest point of Mount Tabor, where an immense panorama opens up and stimulated the artist’s imagination.
3. Religious art
In addition to historical and literary references, the town has a strong ecclesiastical identity, represented by the presence of numerous churches and cathedrals that make it a jewel of religious art. The most famous is undoubtedly the Church of San Domenico, which contains a 15th-century statue of the homonymous saint. Gothic in style, the altar houses the relic of the Holy Cross which, according to legend, was donated by St Peter the Apostle.
The Church of Sant’Anna houses a faithful copy of the Holy House of Loreto and a very dated representation of the Madonna. The Church of San Filippo Neri stands out with its Baroque-style gold altar decoration. The Cathedral of San Flaviano, which is unusual in that it has no facade, houses the tomb of Pope Gregory XII. Attached to the cathedral is the Diocesan Museum, which houses many paintings, works of art and ecclesiastical artefacts by various artists.
4. Discovering the local museums
For art lovers, what should you see in Recanati? Definitely the Villa Coloredo Mels Civic Museum, a majestic villa of noble origins that still retains mediaeval and 16th-century features. Its interior is occupied by the Civic Museum, housed on the building’s three floors with themed areas. These range from the Leopardi section, with the artist’s original memorabilia, to the Pinacoteca, with Renaissance, medieval and modern sections.
More on a local topic is the Museum of Emigration from Le Marche (Museo dell’Emigrazione Marchigiana). It is a multimedia museum where works of art and testimonies pay homage to all the people from the Marches who left their homeland at the end of the 19th century to seek their fortune abroad.
5. Music and symphonies
Recanati’s great importance in the world of music can be found in the Persiani Theatre, dedicated to the Recanati musician Giuseppe Persiani. The great acoustics inside allowed it to host famous opera performances such as Beniamino Gigli’s “Tosca”. To pay homage to the latter, the Beniamino Gigli Museum was built, containing numerous stage costumes and memorabilia from his entire musical career.
6. Palazzo Venieri
Erected in honour of the cardinal of the same name, this 15th-century complex stands in the heart of the historic centre. In addition to the beauty of its architecture and loggias, the courtyard of the palace offers a wide panorama of the entire Marche hinterland.
And if I have little time, what to see and do in Recanati?
As you can see, if you are selecting what to do, Recanati offers a wide choice of places to visit during a stay of several days. On the other hand, if your stay in the village is short, here are all the unmissable things to see and do in Recanati!
Don’t miss the poet’s places, first and foremost his house and the hill of “the Infinite”, and the town’s most folkloristic spots such as Piazza Grande. Definitely leave out a visit to the other churches proposed here apart from the Church of San Domenico, especially for the presence of the sacred relic. As for the two museums, give them a thought if you still have time: their multimedia and sectional organisation helps the visit, making it much more fluent and smooth.
Visiting Recanati: art, history… and more!
The village’s leading role in the territory is also highlighted by the different activities offered to visitors. Between walks in the countryside, cultural tours and tastings, here are some other suggestions on what to see in Recanati!
Nature lovers will find many green spaces full of glimpses and lush areas, such as the Villa Colloredo Park with its lush forest where you can admire a wide fauna. Then there are the Beniamino Gigli gardens where you can spend a relaxing day among the greenery and the remains of some Roman ruins.
The pride of the town is also its handicrafts. Visiting Recanati also means discovering the origins of the typical local craftsmanship, handed down through the generations in the streets of the historic centre. In addition to the figure of Gigli, the town has this affinity with the world of music thanks to the typical production of accordions (organetti). Their manufacture can be appreciated by visiting the famous Castagnari factory. Other productions include horn, ebony and leather.
What is there to see in Recanati if you are passionate about archaeology? Obviously the archaeological area of ancient Potentia! The remains of this ancient Roman settlement are still in excellent condition and can be visited on a guided tour.
You should never travel on an empty stomach! That’s why in Recanati you can enjoy tasty traditional dishes, both meat and fish. The latter are traditional in the port area with fish soups and monkfish tails cooked in “potacchio”, while heading inland we find tagliatelle with duck sauce and Vincisgrassi (a local version of lasagne). In addition to the many main courses prepared with farmyard animals and typical cold cuts, local wines such as Rosso Piceno DOC are also a must.
A rich and flourishing territory: what to see around Recanati
The excellent location of Recanati, close to the provinces of Ancona and Macerata, makes it possible to visit both provinces in complete comfort. The strategic proximity between the sea and the mountains fills the territory with a vast assortment of different landscapes, which can satisfy the travel desires of most tourists.
So here are the most beautiful places to visit around Recanati!
Not far from Recanati, Loreto is a favourite destination for religious tourism thanks to the presence of the Basilica of the Holy House, where the famous statue of the “Black Madonna” is kept.
2. Lake Cingoli
In and around Recanati, especially in the inland areas, we find a large number of water reservoirs that offer visitors the opportunity to make excursions in the midst of nature or simple moments of relaxation. The most famous of these is Lake Cingoli, of artificial origin but famous for its crystal clear water.
3. Conero Riviera
This jewel in the crown of regional seaside tourism is slowly gaining ground over the years, also at national level. The towns of Sirolo, Portonovo and Numana are famous for their nightlife, clear sea and clean beaches, including the most famous beach of the “Two Sisters”. The Conero Regional Park offers tourists a large number of excursions, both for the more experienced and the less adventurous visitors!
The provincial capital, overlooking the Adriatic Sea, is the central hub of regional tourism. The city is rich in art and history thanks to its museums, including the Marche Archaeological Museum and the “Francesco Podesti” Civic Art Gallery, but it is also a vibrant centre for young people.
The presence of the Marche Polytechnic University attracts many young people who can have fun in the streets of the historic centre (full of clubs and pubs), and in summer along the beach clubs.
Macerata, also a university town, stands out for its opulent historic centre. Here we can visit the Arena Sferisterio, where concerts and shows are held, Palazzo Buonaccorsi, where we can find a collection of ancient and modern art, and the Civic Tower with an astronomical clock similar to the one in St Mark’s Square in Venice.
Ready, set and go, destination Recanati!
The best way to visit Recanati and its surroundings is undoubtedly by car!
From the A14 motorway, exit in the direction of Porto Recanati and in 5 minutes you will arrive at your destination! If you take the plane, you will land at Ancona Falconara airport. From there, you can either rent a car or travel by the efficient bus system that connects the whole area.
After reading this article, the city of Recanati and the surrounding areas have no more secrets for you! So what are you waiting for to book a trip with Italia Delight?
Thanks to our Local Expert, you’ll find a wide choice of things to do in Recanati through food and wine trips to customise according to your needs and weekends dedicated to art, food and good wine. 😋