Lands of famed adventurers, a crossroads of cultures marked by Roman numerals for centuries, Murcia and Genoa draw an imaginary line over the Mediterranean to exchange their treasures. Here are five of the most palpable just by looking at this air lift. It remains only to select a date for comparison and (not) select.
1. Music, fire and a million flying toys
The party is in the DNA of the Murcians, as well as the Genoese. And it is “Burial of the Sardine” that was chosen for the demonstration on May 21st. This will be the first time that this parade, declared an International Tourist Interest, will leave the borders of a Spanish city to fill the streets of its Italian sister with magic. Apart from the color of the traditional sardine floats and the music of the bands, there will be no shortage of laughter and hustle among the attendees caused by the famous toy-scattering along the route, making this festival something unique in the world. . A million toys have already been prepared for this occasion.
The parade closes the week of the Spring Festival, a kind of continuation of Holy Week. Many of his floats will have copies in the Italian city.
Burning a sardine and fireworks will achieve catharsis, just like in the original version. Genovese and visitors will end up with reddened skin, they will be careful not to get a small bump on their head, and above all, they will lose their desire to visit the Spanish region. Today it has become much easier thanks to the various formulas developed by the Department of Culture, Tourism and Sports to promote Murcia on the Italian market.
2. Silk trade, engine of common history
Genoa, the capital of Liguria, is the sixth most populous city in Italy. Murcia, the capital of the region of the same name, is the seventh in Spain. The two capitals are linked by history by a bond that made them sisters already in the Middle Ages: trade. It was the exotic Silk Road, the main economic, cultural and scientific link between East and West, that also brought these two cities together in the most obscure pages of the history books.
The port of Genoa houses several ships from the golden age of navigation, such as this replica of a Spanish galleon. Already in the twelfth century, maritime trade linked these two coasts. Getty Images/iStock
Raw materials such as gold and silk fabrics, dyes, wheat or spices came to the peninsula from Genoa. And Murcia was the gateway to Genoa and from there to Europe for local products such as figs, oil, honey, rice, flax, wool, leather or meat.
3. From grapes to olives and from wheat to basil
The well-known Mediterranean diet, an intangible cultural heritage of mankind, is based on plant foods: bread and other cereals; grapes, vinegar and wine and, as a great Mediterranean symbol, olives and olive oil. In the gastronomy of Murcia, fish plays a leading role. Dorada and mullet; salted: mohama, mullet roe and hijad tuna, usually served as an appetizer with raw beans or roasted almonds, among other dishes such as caldero, michiron, rice and rabbit or rabbit with kabanil garlic potatoes.
The links between stewed rice and pesto will become less exotic as a result of twinning.
In Genoa, the Mediterranean diet option offers gems like pesto, its most versatile contribution based on basil, pine nuts, oil and garlic; focaccia, farinata – as typical as pizza in Naples – made from chickpeas. Pansoti, the local way of eating ravioli-like pasta, or the famous candied fruits are other must-try delicacies when visiting the Ligurian capital.
4. Happy and hedonistic everyday life
The Mediterranean Sea washes its shores, and its culture pervades both cities. Outdoor living is part of the Italian city’s DNA, and its nerve center is in the Old Port of Genoa, a magnificent square by the sea. There you can enjoy cultural and leisure activities, admire the most beautiful views of the city and its port and get to know some of the important places marked on the list of every visitor, such as the Aquarium of Genoa or the impressive Galata Museum. -Bernardo.
In Murcia, for its part, the unrivaled climate makes life “outside the door” something natural for its inhabitants and from the first minute for all who visit it. Around the Cardenal Belluga Square or the famous Plaza de las Flores, Murcians and visitors gather every day to enjoy the most representative and important historical buildings, not forgetting some tapas and very fresh beers. Don’t leave Murcia without trying marinaras, a typical Murcian tapa: donut with Russian salad and anchovies on top. Or marriages: a harmonious but ephemeral union of anchovy and anchovy strung on a toothpick. Be careful: to keep them authentically Murcian weddings, the anchovies are always on top of the anchovies.
5. Relationship between cathedrals and their environs
The Cathedral of Murcia, dedicated to Santa Maria, and the Cathedral of Genoa, dedicated to San Lorenzo, are the heart of the two cities. The two cities developed around them, their history intertwined with the lives and relationships of their inhabitants. Both the cathedrals themselves and the squares and streets surrounding them have been the hallmark of both cities for centuries, from the Middle Ages to the present day.
The Holy Collegiate Church of Santa Maria, Cathedral of Murcia, is one of the key works of the Spanish Baroque. Getty Images/iStock
Visiting the cathedral, walking along its medieval streets, having a drink in the most typical and authentic places – this is what makes us understand why Genoa and Murcia are truly sister cities, where both their inhabitants and those who visit them really feel feel at home.
“Genovize” Murcia or “Murcianize” Genoa?
The recent twinning of the two cities is inspired by the revival of the spirit of the Silk Road, the heart of medieval trade, which united the world not by military conquests, but by the most civilized trade and cultural contacts. The rebirth of the Genoese in the world, the restoration of relations with the places where their ancestors traded, is the goal of the latest Genoese tourist proposals, which have given rise to a common project between Genoa and Murcia. Urbact: Interactive Cities, among other projects, uses the power of social media to promote tourism between two cities.
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