Abano Terme
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Abano Terme

Its thermal water has made it a tourist destination
for over 2000 years
Abano Terme, the most important and oldest thermal center in Europe, stands in an enchanting location at the feet of the Euganean Hills and in the center of the Veneto region.
 

Its name comes from the Greek “à ponos”, which means that it takes away pain. The name of the city, therefore, already gives away its true vocation.

The municipal territory

covers a surface area of 21.57 sq km and is mainly level, at an average of 14 meters above sea level, except for the hills, such as Monte San Daniele, with the lovely Monastery of Benedictine nuns rising from its peak, which can also be easily reached from the thermal area, as well as Monte Ortone, its slope the site of the town with the same name – Monteortone – grown around the Sanctuary of the Madonna. The climate of Abano is mild for a good part of the year, with an average annual temperature of 14° C. It is often sunny and rains more frequently in autumn and spring. The city today has a population of over 19,000 inhabitants.

Famous people who stayed
in Abano Terme

Pietro d’Abano, born in Abano in 1257, famous physician, philosopher, astrologer, and alchemist who contributed to the spreading of Aristotelian philosophy as interpreted by Averroè. Francesco Petrarca went to the thermal baths in Abano during his visit to Venice, to cure his gout. It was on this occasion, accompanied on a tour of Arquà, that he fell in love with the place and decided to spend the last years of his life there. The poet, historian and philologist Pietro Bembo (XV-XVI century) lived in Villa Bembiana in Monterosso, a small town outside Abano. Ugo Foscolo stayed at Villa Foscolo, in the small town of Feriole, during the period he wrote “The last letters of Jacopo Ortis” (1796).

 
 

According to legend

Hercules and his heroic companions set off from Greece to defeat Geryon. Finally exhausted and worn out after having killed him, they were restored by the miraculous virtues of that hot water and did not want to return to Greece. Also attracted by the beauty of the surrounding hills, they stayed to live there. The hills were named Euganean because of the nobility of their descent. The spring that had given much relief to warriors was called Aponon in Greek. Hercules himself, in order to purge the evil to Geryon, built a temple in Abano in his honor, permitting him to become an oracle. As Suetonius wrote, this legend was well known in the Roman world; the emperor Tiberius, one day when he was travelling to Illyria, wanted to listen to this famous oracle and he got a peremptory response, precisely to throw gold dice into the spring, exactly where Abano stands today, to be advised about his fate. Legend has it that the dice made the water precious, giving it special properties that can heal various diseases.

 
 
Places to visit
 
 

Pedestrian area
in Abano Terme

The pedestrian area in Abano Terme, heart of the new part of the city, extends from Piazza Fontana to the Montirone Gardens. It is the true axis of life in the city, full of shops, hotels, bars and restaurants. [map] ››

 
 

Hotel Trieste & Victoria

This elegant hotel is located in the pedestrian area and is a historical building. Here, in fact, was the seat of the Italian Headquarters during the First World War (1918) and General Armando Diaz usually stayed here in an apartment on the first floor. 
[map] ››

 
 

Grand Hotel Orologio

It was built in 1700 by the noble family Dondi dell’Orologio; in the following century it was expanded and the Neoclassic facade was added (1825) by Giuseppe Jappelli. Even though it has been closed for years, it remains one of the emblems of the history of Abano. [map] ››

 
 

The Montirone Hill

The stately entrance designed by Jappelli indicates the importance of this little hill, once rich with hot springs that naturally flowed at a temperature of 80°C, for which today we find the stone tubs, symbol of the thousand-year-old thermal bath tradition in Abano. The Doric column topped with a cup in the curls of a

snake was also designed by Giuseppe Jappelli in 1825, on occasion of the visit by Emperor Franz I of Austria.  [map] ››
 
 

The Pinacoteca Civica Montirone

Located inside the Montirone Gardens, this art gallery houses the most important works from the collection of Roberto Bassi Rathgeb, an art historian and collector from Bergamo, who, after his death, donated his collection of art and antiques to the Municipality of Abano Terme.

The art gallery displays paintings by Giovanni Cariani, Moretto da Brescia, Giovan Battista Moroni, Fra Galgario, Alessandro Magnasco, Giacomo Ceruti, Giuseppe Zais, Gian Domenico Tiepolo, Giovanni Migliara, Pietro and Alessandro Longhi, Francesco Hayez, and Casere Tallone, as well as etchings by Van Ostade, just to mention the most important artists. Next to the gallery is the Galleria al Montirone, which holds important exhibits of ancient, modern and contemporary art. Opening hours: everyday except Mondays, from 10 a.m. to 12 and from 3 to 6 p.m. – Free admission.   [map] ››
 

Duomo di San Lorenzo

located in the old part of the city, it houses a considerably precious work of art: some paintings from the school of Jacopo Ceruti, known as Il Pitocchetto, and other works by Pietro della Vecchia, Amleto Sartori, J. K. Henrici, Mario Pinton, Luigi Strazzabosco, Giorgio Scalco, Enrico Ghiro, Aristide Ghiro and Imerio Trevisan. The base of the bell tower dates back to 900 A.D., while the upper part is from 1315.   [map] ››

 

Piazza del Sole e della Pace

Next to the Duomo di San Lorenzo, it is noteworthy for its sundial, created by the local astronomer Salvador Condè, and is one of the largest in Europe (3,000 sq m).  [map] ››

 
 
 

The City Thermal Park

It longitudinally links the two parts of the city thanks to a walkway through parks alternating with a selection of tempting shops. [map] ››

 
 

The fountains
of Abano Terme

The fountains of Abano Terme are almost a symbol of the true wealth of the city – thermal water. Numerous fountains decorate the squares and pedestrian area. A visit to piazza Cristoforo Colombo is worthwhile, dominated by the monumental fountain dedicated to the navigator from Genoa. [map] ››

 
 

The International Museum of Amleto and Donato Sartori Masks

is an integrated museum complex to promote and enhance culture, the arts and performances. Part of a precious collection of theater masks produced by Amleto and Donato Sartori in 77 years of work is exhibited.

It also houses an extraordinary quantity of masks, original geo-ethno-anthropological remains and works from the most significant cultural areas of the world. Museum hours: Tuesdays from 9 a.m. to 1.30 p.m.; Wednesdays and Fridays from 9 a.m. to 1 p.m. and from 2.30 to 6 p.m.; Sundays from 2:30 to 7 p.m. Closed Mondays, Thursdays and Saturdays Admission: full € 7; discounted € 5.   [map] ››
 
 

Villa Bassi Rathgeb

It also houses an extraordinary quantity of masks, original geo-ethno-anthropological remains and works from the most significant cultural areas of the world. Museum hours: Tuesdays from 9 a.m. to 1.30 p.m.; Wednesdays and Fridays from 9 a.m. to 1 p.m. and from 2.30 to 6 p.m.; Sundays from 2:30 to 7 p.m. Closed Mondays, Thursdays and Saturdays Admission: full € 7; discounted € 5.
[map] ››

 
 

The San Daniele Monastery

It stands on the hill of the same name and is where Benedictine nuns live in seclusion. The church, built in 1711 by Francesco Muttoni, a panoramic loggia and some rooms on the round floor can be visited. The monastery shop sells products made by the nuns.  [map] ››

 

The Sanctuary of Beata Vergine della Salute

It rises in Monteortone, a small town outside Abano, at the foot of the hill with the same name and is a destination for pilgrims. It holds an admirable series of frescoes by Jacopo da Montagnana, a Crucifix by Palma il Giovane and a grandiose Tamburini organ with three keyboards, one of the biggest in the Veneto, apart from the miraculous image of the Madonna. The sanctuary was built in 1428, following an apparition of the Virgin to a man of arms, Pietro Falco, who healed him of the plague by inviting him to bathe in a spring at the foot of the hill. [map] ››

 

The Civic Library

The Civic Library of Abano is located in the historical part of the city, S. Lorenzo. The building is a true jewel, a stately and sophisticated structure, work of the famous architect Paolo Portoghesi. Subdivided into three floors, there is a meeting room, a playroom for children, a newspaper and books library, the local section, a study and consultation room, the section for foreign books, and the media room. Instead, the library warehouse and archive is on the sub-ground level. The Library has over 30,000 volumes, among them some very rare and old books. Opening times: from Monday to Friday 9 a.m. – 12.30 and 2:30 – 7:30 p.m.; Saturdays 9 a.m. – 1 p.m. – Free admission   [map] ››

 
 
 
 
                     
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