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Things to do in Parma

Our most recommended things to do in Parma

From Parma: Parmigiano and Parma Ham Guided Food Tour

1. From Parma: Parmigiano and Parma Ham Guided Food Tour

Visit a traditional Parmigiano Reggiano cheese factory and learn the secrets of one of the most celebrated ingredients of Italy. Watch the cheese makers at work and taste some cheese with honey and local wine. See how the cheese – protected by the EU – is still produced following traditional methods. Watch the cheese makers pull the product from the milk vats and visit the shaping and salting rooms before going to the stagionatura where the cheese is aged. Savor the sight and smell of thousands of wheels of cheese. Then, taste the delicious cheese with some honey and local wine. After the cheese factory take a short drive to the Parma ham factory. Go to the cellar branding area and see where the meat is cooled, salted, and rested. Taste cold cuts with local wines. Visit an organic Parma ham farm and meet the producer. Finally, taste delicious Parma ham paired with a glass of Malvasia.

Parma: Parmigiano-Reggiano Cheese Tour

2. Parma: Parmigiano-Reggiano Cheese Tour

Learn the origins of Parmigiano-Reggiano cheese throughout a visit to a cheese factory in Parma. Hear how this cheese, protected by the EU, is still produced following traditional methods. Exclusively made in the Zona Tipica of Parma, Reggio Emilia, Modena, and parts of Bologna and Mantova, Parmesan cheese dates back over 9 centuries. Watch the cheese makers pull the product from the milk vats, and get a behind-the-scenes look at the process of cooking and separating the whey. You'll then visit the shaping and salting rooms, before going to the stagionatura where the cheese is aged. Savor the sight and smell of thousands of wheels of cheese, and learn about the strict tests performed by the Consorzio, such as hammering the cheeses before the fire-branding ritual. Finally, taste the delicious cheese accompanied by some honey and local wine.

Parma: Parmigiano-Reggiano Tour and Tasting

3. Parma: Parmigiano-Reggiano Tour and Tasting

Meet the dairy guide directly on site and start your visit of an authentic producer of Parmigiano-Reggiano PDO: you’ll discover how the King of all cheeses has been literally made by hand in the same way since the Benedictine monks invented it 10 centuries ago! From the curdling into the typical copper heaters to the salting and the final ageing in the so-called wheel cathedrals, you will be a privileged witness of almost all the steps of production of this out-and-out food icon. Tasting at the end. You will join a shared tour made by the staff of the dairy. The producer can be max 30km far from the city center.

Parma: Traditional Food Tour

4. Parma: Traditional Food Tour

With this gastronomic tour in Parma you can immerse yourself in the local gastronomic culture accompanied by a local expert, a person who lives here and who knows all the secrets and curiosities about the area. You will discover local restaurants and the most hidden places, frequented only by locals. Come and taste some of the most famous dishes of the Emilia- Romagna tradition and immerse yourself in the culinary and cultural traditions of this beautiful city. Some of the possible tastings on this tour include: a board of cold cuts, Parmigiano cheese, and glass of wine; Tortelli (egg pasta filled with differents ingredients); Carciofa (a delicious and cheesy quiche; Bomba di riso (a rice timbale seasoned with a meat sauce; and Tigelle, prepared with a mixture of flour, lard, yeast, and water (typically stuffed with salami). You can also try a Duchessa cake – the typical Sunday dessert for local families, and enjoy a Caffè espresso – the only way to end a meal in Italy.

Parma Classic Walking Tour

5. Parma Classic Walking Tour

A private tour to discover one of the most flourishing cities in Italy, rich in culture, tradition and delicious food. Find out more about the history of Parma and its splendid monuments, including the Pilotta's Palace, the Farnese Theater, the Roman Bridge, Piazza Garibaldi and the Church of Santa Maria della Steccata. You will also stroll in Piazza Duomo, admiring the Cathedral and its Baptistery.

Parma: Parmigiano Production and Parma Ham Tour & Tasting

6. Parma: Parmigiano Production and Parma Ham Tour & Tasting

Learn the secrets of some Italian specialties on a private tour of Parmigiano Reggiano and Prosciutto factories. Enjoy a hassle-free visit with pickup and drop-off from your hotel in Parma. The tour begins at 8:30 AM when the cheese makers pull the cheese from the milk vats. Watch the masters at work as you hear an overview of Parmigiano Reggiano's history from your local guide. Next, visit the seasoning/storage rooms where the cheese is brought for its last stage of production. At the end of the tour, try some different aged Parmigiano Reggiano and browse the on-site shop where you can purchase local products. After, head to the picturesque hills of Langhirano or Felino, which are home to Prosciutto di Parma Ham. The tour begins with a brief history of the production, followed by a visit to the "cold stage," where fresh meats are processed. Learn how the best meat is chosen and see the salting machinery and refrigeration/resting cells. Take a look in the seasoning chambers and savor the traditional ham aromas in the air. Learn about the "spillatura" and how only the best hams pass the test and are branded as the famed "Crown of Parma." Finally, enjoy a degustation of Parma ham accompanied by a glass of Malvasia, a sparkling white local wine. After the tasting, your guide will bring you to your hotel or accommodation.

Full Day Parmigiano, Prosciutto and Balsamic Vinegar Tour

7. Full Day Parmigiano, Prosciutto and Balsamic Vinegar Tour

The tour starts early in the morning to reach a cheese factory and watch the Parmigiano Reggiano production: from the curd to the aging. At the end, you can also taste this amazing cheese, famous all over the world. We will proceed to the idyllic hills of Langhirano or Felino, home of Prosciutto di Parma Ham. Visit an organic Parma ham farm and meet the producer. Finally, taste delicious Parma ham paired with a glass of Malvasia. To conclude our day, we will travel to the Balsamic Vinegar farm house in the city of Modena. The tour continues with a view and a walking in the splendid 40-acre vineyard's estate, before continuing with a visit of the rooms where this "black gold" is produced, aged, and preserved within ancient wooden barrels. You will then taste 3 traditional balsamic vinegar which are 15, 22, and 28 years old, combined with local delicacies.

Parma: Parmigiano and Prosciutto Guided Tour

8. Parma: Parmigiano and Prosciutto Guided Tour

Meet your expert guide at Roadhouse Restaurant in Parma, on Viale delle Esposizioni. Begin the culinary tour at an authentic producer of Parmigiano-Reggiano, discovering how the "King of all Cheeses" has been made in the same way since the Benedectine monks invented it centuries ago. Finish the tour with a tasting of this exquisite cheese. Continue to the medieval village of Torrechiara for a photo opportunity by its romantic castle. Then, travel to one of Parma's family-run ham factories producing the famous Prosciutto di Parma. There, you can enjoy a lunch based on the typical products of the region at a farm-to-table restaurant. Enjoy Parmigiano, prosciutto, local cold cuts, a typical filled pasta dish (tortelli di Parma), and homemade cakes. Pair your lunch with delicious local wines like Lambrusco and Malvasia.

From Bologna or Modena: Parma Gastronomic Tour with Lunch

9. From Bologna or Modena: Parma Gastronomic Tour with Lunch

Discover the production of two excellences of Italian cuisine, Parmigiano Reggiano and Parma Ham, on a gastronomic tour from Bologna. After being picked up from your accommodation in Bologna or Modena Learn more about Parma and its local cuisine that is so popular that it often ends up dominating conversations among locals. Visit a historic Parmigiano Reggiano factory where an expert guide will show you the stages of production, and you'll be able to taste some of the cheese made by the factory. Then, discover more about the production of Parma Ham. Learn the secrets of this Italian delicacy followed by a tasting paired with a glass of local wine.  Following your visit to the Parma Ham factory, enjoy a light lunch at a prosciuttificio with typical products and dishes. Finally, head back to your accommodation in Bologna or Modena.

Parma: Private Walking Tour w/ a Local Guide

10. Parma: Private Walking Tour w/ a Local Guide

Join this private walking tour led by a local guide to discover the beautiful city of Parma. Discover the medieval epoch, the rich legacy of Renaissance art, the splendor of the Farnese era, the Bourbon reconstruction of the state, the happy period under the rule of the Duchess Maria Luigia of Austria and, finally, the contemporary era. Follow you guide and explore the church St. John the Evangelist, the central Piazza Duomo and its monuments, the Basilica of Santa Maria della Steccata. You'll also pass along the Teatro Regio, the Palazzo della Pilotta and the Palazzo Ducale and get to know their histories and importance in town through the words of your guide.

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What people are saying about Parma

Overall rating

4.7 / 5

based on 468 reviews

It was such a delight to have Giorgia as our guide on our Parma walking tour! She shared an overview of the history of the city as well as an excellent orientation to the city center. (We are most grateful for her recommendations for lunch and gelato!) Giorgia’s genuine affection for the city and her knowledge about it helped us truly feel like “temporary Parmense” during our visit. We would highly recommend her for anyone wishing to become better acquainted with Parma. Grazie Mille, Giorgia!

For anyone who enjoys to cook with Parmigiano Reggiano—or to eat authentic Italian dishes made with it—we highly recommend this tour. This tour gave us a close-up look at how the cheese is made by inviting us to watch part of that day’s work. Following the tour we were treated to a tasting of different ages of Parmigiano Reggiano, paired with balsamic vinegar and wine. Thank you so much for the memorable and educational experience!

Jihene was an excellent tour guide who helped us appreciate the local dishes in Parma. We thoroughly enjoyed all the food served from the Parma ham to the tortellini and gelato. On top of this, Jihene also took us around the city and shared the interesting culture and history of Parma.

This was one of the highlights of our trip to Italy. Our guides were wonderful. The food tour was fascinating. The stops were great and the different foods to sample were amazing.

Incredible experience that I recommend to everyone traveling in the region. Guide super helpful and full of knowledge.