What remains will be devoted, after driving five miles, to PAVIA, the ancient Roman city of Ticinum, later the capital of the Longobards (571-774) and the Carolingians. At one point, it overshadowed Milan in importance, then fell into decay. What remains is a fascinating turreted city, medieval in aspect. Crossing Piazza Dante, we come immediately to San Pietro in Ciel d'Oro, a magnificent Romanesque church of sandstone and brick, so called (a ciel d'oro n means "golden sky") because of its ceiling which was one time gilded; in it are buried St.Augustine (in a magnificent marble Tomb of 1360), Severmus Boethius and King Liutprand. From here we pass on to the Castello Visconteo, a handsome square building with towers, crenelated walls and lovely courtyard: at present, it houses a number of collections. Turning down Corso Cairoli, we come to the Gothic church of S. Francesco (13° century) and from here to the University, one of the oldest in Italy. Beside the University rise three medieval towers; together with the two in Via Porto these are the only ones left intact of the hundred or more which once gave Pavia its peculiar aspect. Note also the famous Renaissance Colleges by Ghislieri, Borromeo, Castiglioni etc. From the University take Via Roma to the Painting Gallery in the Palazzo Malaspina in Piazza Petrarca: it contains an important group of works by Antonello do Messina, Giovanni Bellini, Correggio, Cima da Conegliano, Vivarlni, Foppa and others.
Taking Via Venti Settembre and passing by the Lombard-Gothic church of S. Maria del Carmine, we reach the Renaissance Cathedral. Following Strada Nuova and Corso Garibaldi, we come upon the jewel of Pavia, the flawless church of San Michele, which is one of the most important creations of all Romanesque architecture.
We leave Pavia, crossing the Ticino by the Covered Bridge (1354), rebuilt after the damage suffered during the last War. After some 13 miles, we reach Voghera, with its 14°century Castello Visconteo. AL Tortona (24 miles), we take the Aulostrada for Genoa and quickly cross the Apennines, following the valley of the Scrivia. Instead of going straight on to Genoa we will turn off at Busalla in order to extend our excursion to include the Giovi Pass and the towns of Casella, Laccia, and Carasco, and reach the Ligurian coast between Lavagna and Chiavari (42,5 miles from the Autostrada). And so we begin the third part of our trip, in the pleasant company of the cliffs and beaches which alternate along the Riviera di Levante. Standing on the hill north of hevagna are the Gothic Basilica of San Salvatore di Cogorno, with its firm-set tower, and the 13° century Pisan-Gothic Palazzo dei Fieschi.
Passing Chiavari, we come upon a succession of limestone rocks and cliffs, interrupted by the lovely little beach of Zoaghi. We are now at the outskirts of RAPALLO. From Rapallo, one of the most fatuous holiday towns on the Riviera, we can take the funicular railway up to see the magnificent view from the Madonna di Montallegro, or go (2 miles) and visit the romantic ruins of the Monastery of Santa Maria in Valle Christi.
The 12° day of our tour will be devoted to a relaxing trip around the lovely Tigullic Gulf. We shall stop at the Sanctuary of San Michele di Pagana, where there is a beautiful canvas by Van Dyck. Then by way of Santa Margherim we shall come to PORTOFINO, a place of rare and famous beauty, with its fine natural harbour, the crystal clarity of its water, the variety of its vegetation and the constantly shifting range of its scenery. After a leisurely visit, we shall leave Portofino and continue our journey westward,visiting San Lorenzo della Costa (superb Flemish Triptych in the Parrocchiale) and the entrancing little beach of San Fruttuoso (Abbey with an ancient cloister an the Tomb of the Dorias).