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Guastalla is a town of Etruscan origin. It is one of the most characteristic towns in the lowlands of Reggio Emilia along the Po river.


Altitude: 25 m
Inhabitants: 15.132 (updated to January 1, 2014)
Post code: 42016
Weekly market day: Wednesday and Saturday
Patron Saint: Santa Caterina (November 25)
Hamlets: San Giacomo, San Girolamo, San Martino, San Rocco, Tagliata


Phone 0039 0522 839763 - Tourist Information Office
Phone 0039 0522 839711 - Municipality
sito web Municipality of Guastalla
sito web Guastalla History and Culture

How to get there


By car
A22 Motorway exit (16 km); A1 Motorway exit (25 km); road connection: SS62 (Main Road) Verona-Mantova-Parma; SS63 (Main Road) junction to Reggio Emilia, SP (Provincial Road) with Novellara, SP (Provincial Road) with Reggiolo.

By train
From the Railway Station of Reggio Emilia: TPER Reggio-Guastalla route.

By bus
From Reggio Emilia, Piazzale Europa: bus No. 87.


Guastalla, important Renaissance court and major coastal centre of the Po river and of the Lowlands of the Reggio Emilia province, is located 30 km north of the administrative centre, on the border of the province of Mantua.

Reasons to visit

Guastalla maintains the discrete charm of an ancient capital in its streets, buildings, churches and monuments. The XVI-century town plan is still largely visible. The ancient via Gonzaga is a chessboard road system that leads to the square, the heart of the town, dominated by the beautiful statue of Ferrante Gonzaga, the work by Leone Leoni.

Here are the XVI-century Cathedral, with a façade dating back to the late XIX century, the Ducal Palace (1567) that hosts the town Museum and the Town Hall. 
The Maldotti Library, a valuable example of a scholar’s library dating back to the XVIII century, with incunabula and medieval manuscripts, is located in Corso Garibaldi.
Worth seeing is the Santissima Annunciata Church (or dei Servi), the Beata Vergine della Porta Sanctuary and the San Francesco Church.
A short distance away is the Oratory of San Giorgio, dating back to the X century which, thanks to its small size, gives the visitor an incomparable mystic atmosphere.

Not to be missed

A walk along Viale Po that leads to the woods on the banks of the river. The Po Lido is the site of events and performances and is very crowded and lively.


The recently restored Ruggero Ruggeri Municipal Theatre is the centre of the town’s cultural life.

Keeping fit

Viale Po and the banks of the river are ideal for bicycle rides and walks.

In the vicinity

At Pieve di Guastalla is the oldest religious building in the area: the Basilica della Pieve, dating back to the X century, now dedicated to the Apostles Peter and Paul.


Georgica April
Festival of land, water and work in the fields. Market show of local varieties of fruits, flowers, vegetables, show of rural courtyard animals and market show of local “forgotten” organic food and wine products.

Lost Plants and AnimalsFourth weekend of September
Market show of ancient varieties of fruits, flowers, vegetables, seeds and breeds of rural animals. Market show of local and forgotten organic food and wine products. Market show of craft products, entertainment, ancient games, meetings, workshops.

Santa Caterina FestivalFourth weekend of November
Stalls, fun fair, market show, performances, entertainment, shows, exhibition of agricultural machinery.


It is possible to ask for temporary permits for the ZTL (Limited Traffic Area).

Historical notes

The first record Guastalla dates back to 864, when St. Peter's Chapel of Guastalla was given by the emperor Ludwig to his wife Angelberga, who in turn gave the chapel to the Piacenza-based San Sisto Monastery.
The abbess gave this chapel along with the San Giorgio Chapel to Boniface of Canossa. Guastalla experienced its time of greatest importance under the Canossa family.
The town hosted a convention of nobles and ecclesiastic authorities in preparation for the Council of Piacenza in 1096, and a council presided over by Pope Paschal II in 1106.
Guastalla underwent various vicissitudes under rule by Cremona, Parma, and the Benedictine Monastery in Polirone, before it became the property of the Visconti family, who gave it in feud to Guido Torello in 1406.
It was given to Don Ferrante Gonzaga in 155  and remained under the rule of the Gonzaga family, who became dukes in 1621, until 1746.
Guastalla was then annexed to the Duchy of Parma, but was again made into a duchy for Paolina Bonaparte during the Napoleonic Era. After 1814, Guastalla was again annexed to Parma, under the rule of Duchess Maria Luisa.
The town prospered due to its position along the banks of the Po River, but it also underwent the disastrous Wars of Succession.
The Savoyard grenadiers had their baptism of fire in Guastalla in 1705.

Useful links