The city of Cremona is situated on the left side of the Po river, its province includes 115 cities and a population of about 334.000 inhabitants.
The expanses of cultivated fields, the quite flow of rivers, canals with long rows of poplar trees flanking the watercourses or grouped in small woods represent a typical landscape of the province of Cremona.
You can also see old walled towns, large farming villages, large farmsteads, bodri surrounded by the distinctive marsh vegetation, plane woods, parks and nature reserves.
Cremona is carved out by three rivers: The Adda to the west, the Po to the south, the Oglio to the east and the Serio to the north. The Po river has been impressed in history over centuries, nowadays it is an important trade and tourist route, it also constitutes one of the finest environments of naturalistic interest in the province.
You can cruise along the river on board of one of the numerous boats that offer tourist excursions to show the small riverside villages and places of uncontaminated nature.
Cremona is the only provincial capital in Lombardy to have a port on the Po. You can board boats large and small, motorboats and ships to explore the "great river". There are different boat tours available, stopping at riverside villages and places of particular naturalistic interest, you can eat in characteristic restaurant tasting the local cuisine.
The pleasures of fine food have always played a rule of importance in and around Cremona. The typical products of this fertile land of great farming traditions are: torrone, mostarda, cold meats and dairy produce.
Also pasta and desserts are appetising products even though they are less well-known.
Typical of the cremonese area are filled pasta, such as marubuni in broth, filled with beef and braised meats, and Crema's tortelli, different from marubini because filled with meat flavoured with ingredients that give them a sweetish flavour. Other first courses typical are: risotto with seasonal ingredients, such as mushrooms and sausage and also tasty soups.
In Cremona cold meats have been made since the 16 th century and today the salame of Cremona has become very famous.
Moreover you can taste lesso, a mixture of boiled meats (beef, chicken, cotechino, calf's tongue and head), served with the traditional mostarda that is an assortment of candied fruits left to marinate in a mustard-based syrup. Cotechino and zampone are typical in winter, accompanied by lentils or Soncino radici bianche
No one should fail to try one piece of cheese, hard, medium-hard and soft cheese, such as Grana Padano, provolone, mascarpone, crescenza and fontal.
There are many sweetmeats: different cakes of peasant origin and above all torrone, the most typical sweetmeat, that is also the symbol of the city, bound to its history.
In fact, according to tradition torrone has been prepared for the marriage of Bianca Maria Visconti and Francesco Sforza in 1441 and offered in homage to the couple.
Torrone is made with almonds, sugar, honey and egg white, it was shaped to resemble the Torrazzo (the city's bell-tower) and hence took its name.