The main attraction for us in Padua was Orto Botanico ♥♥♥, the oldest formal botanic garden, the distinction recognized on UNESCO World Heritage list. It is small, structured, beautiful, well worth a visit regardless of whether you are into botany or not.
Having just a couple of hours to explore the rest of the city, we found it very pleasant and atmospheric, with a number of interesting buildings and overall good vibe. We only looked at various points of interest from the outside and stepped into the courtyard of Palazzo Bo ♥, one of the Padua University’s buildings. If spending more time in town, various other points of interest, such as Palazzo del Ragione, Carrella degli Scroveni, or Basilica di Sant’Antonio, can be visited.
We did step into the Duomo but found it unremarkable, although the baptistry, which can be entered for a separate fee, supposedly holds exceptional frescoes.
Many public places were full of market stands on the Saturday that we visited. We normally enjoy the market atmosphere, but on a different day, we might have been able to better enjoy Piazza dei Signori ♥ and Piazza delle Erbe ♥.
As everywhere in historic cities, parking can only be found at the edge of the central area. We found street-side metered parking near Basilica di Sant’Antonio, not far from the Botanic Garden. It was limited to 3 hours, which curtailed the length of our visit.