Perched on a hill between the Chienti and Potenza rivers, Macerata is a small city in Italy’s Marche region. It was originally established in Roman times as the ancient settlement of Helvia Recina and is now renowned for its elaborate palazzi and art-adorned Renaissance cathedral.
Things to do in Macerata
Stroll through the heart of Macerata to admire its Renaissance arcades and the ornate palazzi that line the Corso Matteotti. Of particular note is the Palazzo Buonaccorsi, which dates from the early 18th century and houses the Musei Civici di Palazzo Buonaccorsi. Several impressive frescoes adorn the Hall of the Aeneid and have been attributed to Carlo Antonio Rambaldi, Antonio Dardani and Francesco Solimena.
In the heart of Macerata is the Cathedral of Saint Julian, a Renaissance-style church designed by Cosimo Morelli in the 15th century. Step inside to see the paintings by Filippo Bellini and a mosaic depicting St. Michael the Archangel by Gimbattista Calandra, which was originally housed in the Vatican’s St. Peter’s Basilica.
A short drive north of Macerata is the remains of ancient Helvia Recina, a Roman-built settlement nestled in the valley of the Potenza River. It’s believed to have been inhabited from the 2nd century BC until it was destroyed by Visigoths in the 4th century AD. In addition to an aqueduct and traces of a bath complex, the site is home to the largest theatre in the Picenum region of ancient Italy.
Getting around Macerata
Macerata is around an hour’s drive from Ancona and Marche Airport, which has flights to destinations across Europe. Regular trains connect to the Macerata railway station and buses travel throughout the city. The centre of Macerata is compact enough to explore on foot.