The river runs through it and bridges hold it together

Migration is nothing new in Parma: since the second half of the 19th century, Parmensi have participated in the “Great Emigration”: from peasants who go to Brazil to circus wanderers, to those who become restaurateurs, shopkeepers or café owners… And then those who with Fascism take refuge in France and then in Europe and America. Finally, since the 1980s, migration from abroad with migrants and refugees accounting for 15 percent of residents, one of the highest percentages nationwide.

This is why Migrantour in Parma! To highlight the transformations that have gone through and are going through it thanks to the continuous migrations over time. We want, with intercultural escorts, to look with other eyes at the historical and meeting places of the city, because, you know, the look depends on memories… and, then the imperial staircase of the Pilotta takes on the appearance of the high waves ploughed by the Transatlantic from Argentina to Italy, the Ducal Park comes to host the baobabs of Central Africa, the Ghiaia the Nigerian rural markets… In short, the small city of Parma, former home of Maria Luigia, is transformed into a sort of capsule containing many places, many elsewhere.

The Kwa Dunìa association, with the Migrantour project born in Parma in 2019, has bet once again by believing in people, their plurality and their ability to engage and forge relationships for the common good. The result is a sparkling group of accompanying men and women who give us opportunities to marvel at what, though before our eyes, we struggle to see in its infinite nuances.



On both sides of the River
The itinerary crosses the river that divides the city twice: on one side the imposing Pilotta and the historic market, on the other the resistant neighborhood par excellence: a teeming of squares, migrant-run stores, churches and places of solidarity. It starts from the Palazzo della Pilotta in the heart of the historic center. A symbol of the city’s cultural heritage, it is a place of passage and, thanks to the adjacent lawns of Piazzale della Pace, an important meeting point for young people and migrants. Crossing the Parma River, one arrives at the Ducal Park, where centuries-old trees of different origins provide coolness and fragrance to young and old alike and Albanian domino players on benches. We continue in the direction of Art Lab, a space for reception and cultural initiatives regenerated by a student collective. We arrive, then in the heart of Oltretorrente, in its squares, meeting points and symbols of anti-fascist resistance, including Piazzale Picelli, marked by a great intercultural energy. Here we find: the Riahi store, the Antica Torrefazione, the Pulcinella bar, the Cocconi school (important for its integration education) and the church of Santa Maria del Quartiere, which houses the Catholic and Romanian Orthodox rites. The walk ends in Ghiaia, the historic site of the market where the protagonists are the smells and colors of the markets of the countries of origin of the Migrantour intercultural companions!
Other itineraries
PTo find out about other active itineraries in the city and keep up to date with Migrantour Parma’s news and initiatives, visit the website and social pages listed below in the Info section.



In Parma intercultural urban routes are promoted by Kwa Dunia

Local coordinator: Rosanna Pippa

Phone number:+39 3492604456


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