Discover Italy: a tour in Fano

If you travel to Italy, central Italy, let’s say in the region where I live (the beautiful yet still too little known) Marche, well you shouldn’t miss Fano, in the north of our region, right on the Adriatic coast.

I happened to be in Fano yesterday taking pictures for my blog (I was mistaken for a tourist: ‘excuse me, young lady, have you taken a picture of the Augustus Gate carved on the church wall?’. No actually I hadn’t, but I caught up immediately!).

Fano is a little town, very Italian (whatever the word ‘Italian’ brings up to  your mind… anyway take a good look at the photograph of the main square above: doesn’t that look Italian to you?). It has a beautiful historical centre dating back to 2000 years ago.

Founded by the Romans, it was held by Julius Caesar in 49 BC along with Pisaurum (Pesaro, yes, my hometown!) and Ancona (another coastal city of Marche but about 50 km south of Pesaro). Caesar Augustus established a colonia there and built a wall (some parts of the wall are still existing today, together with the Gate – Arco d’Augusto – that Augustus built in 2 AD at the entrance to the town).

I love getting lost (how lost can you possibily get in Fano?) walking in the narrow side streets of the historical centre (cobblestones everywhere… I broke more than a shoe heel walking on the Italian sanpietrini. This word is cute: cobblestone in Italian is ‘sampietrino’ (‘little Saint Peter’, as you find them everywhere in Rome, especially in Saint Peter’s square!).

Let’s say I took photographs of Fano ‘highlights’ yesterday: the Cathedral (erected in the 12th century over a pre-existing church destroyed by a fire in 1111); the main square with the Fountain of Fortune dating back to the 17th century (by the way, the original name of Fano was ‘Fano Fortunae’, probably because of a ‘Fotune Temple’ erected by the Romans about 200 b.C when they defeated the Carthaginian army led by general Hasdrubal); the ‘Fortuna theatre’ hosted in the former ‘Palazzo della Ragione’ (built in the 13th century, it underwent many transformations); the Gate of Augustus (2 AD); San Silverstro church in the main square dating back to the 12th century).

I could not but take a picture of the many Piaggio scooters in front of an ancient building with a brick façade!

I hope you enjoy the pictures and our short travel to Fano!



  1. I love your blog Simona, and Marche. I have fallen in love with this beautiful region virtually. I have never visited till now. Where are you in the Marche? Hope to come soon and maybe we can meet then 🙂

    • Hello Ishita! Wow, that is exactly my aim: to have people fall in love with our ‘little corner of Italy’ 🙂
      I live in Pesaro, the birthplace of Gioachino Rossini, on the Adriatic coast – central Italy.
      If you ever come to Italy, and in our region, I’ll be glad to show you around. It would be great to meet!

      • I’m so happy to connect with you. I hope to come sometime soon, il be in touch. Pesaro & Urbino I’ve read so much about them. I’m sure il fall in love with your corner of Italy 🙂

    • Hi Brad! I read that you like old theatres. I wonder if you managed, while in Fano, to visit the ‘Teatro della Fortuna’ (the theatre dates back to the 17th century, but the façade – the ‘Palazzo del Podestà’- is from the 13th century). I wonder if you visited the nearby Pesaro, where I live (hometown of composer Gioachino Rossini). Thanks for stopping by!

      • Simona, we did see the Teatro in Fano, as well as a number of the sites you photographed in your excellent post about the town. I regret to say that we saw only a tiny slice of Pesaro. We were based in Urbino, and traveled up to see Bologna and Ravenna, so we were moving too fast to see everything. I had thought about a blog post about Fano, but you’ve covered the town more knowledgably than I can. Thank you, and I look forward to following your continuing insights into the real Italy. Grazie.

        • Hi Brad. Urbino: excellent choice! I think you should write a blog post about Fano. Mine wasn’t accurate at all… And then I would love to hear about Fano from a ‘non Italian’ point of view. There’s so much to learn when we look at ourselves from the ‘outside’ 😉

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