If you are planning to move to Italy and looking for the best cities to settle in, then you might want to consider moving to Parma. Parma is located in the western part of Emilia-Romagna and has of approximately 195.000 inhabitants. Famous worldwide for its gastronomy and for being the capital of Parmigiano and Prosciutto, it was also the Italian capital of culture 2020+21.
Moving to Parma from abroad
The immigration process is different for EU and extra-EU nationals. If you are an extra-EU citizen, you will need a visa to enter the country. There are different types of Italian visas depending on your needs. However, based on the activity and visa you applied for, there may be different requirements to comply with. But basically, one of the first requirements after entering Italy and arriving to Parma is to register your presence at Questura di Parma.
On the other hand, EU Citizen entering the Country would only need an ID or Passport, but shall still apply for a Fiscal Code.
Regardless of different cases, both EU and Extra-EU citizens need to enrol at Parma Town Hall.
Where to live after moving to Parma
The second step in your moving process is finding the perfect home. We know that the choice is not easy, as there are many factors to consider. The following are some of our best neighborhood suggestions:
- Oltretorrente: this is the University district, conveniently located near the historic centre. It is a nice neighbourhood full of shops and bars.
- San Lazzaro: this is the residential district, located in the eastern part of Parma and not far from the city centre. It is a peaceful area, which makes it the perfect neighbourhood for families.
- Cittadella: this is an exclusive and wealthy district, located south of the city centre. In this neighbourhood, you can find many green areas and there is also the Tardini Stadium, the home of the local football team.
Healthcare assistance in Parma
Moving to Parma gives you acces to Emilia-Romagna’s public health system, which is one of the best in Italy, and provides very efficient services to its citizens.
Foreign nationals legally residing in Italy have the right to enroll in the National Health System to, and to be assisted by a family doctor or pediatrician.
Parma, the capital of the Food Valley
Parma is the gastronomic centre of the “Italian Food Valley”, an area which also includes the provinces of Modena and Reggio Emilia and that owes its name to the great number of PDO and PGI products, such as Parmigiano Reggiano and Coppa which are characteristic of these territories.
Thanks to its culinary tradition, in 2015, UNESCO recognized Parma as “UNESCO Creative City for Gastronomy”; they award this recognition to cities that demonstrate a strong relationship with gastronomy.
Not only food
Besides food, Parma is also famous for “Festival Verdi”, which is held every year in October. This is a festival dedicated to opera and to the composer Giuseppe Verdi, who was born in Busseto, a city near Parma.
Moreover, in 2020 and 2021 Parma was the Italian capital of culture and therefore there is no shortage of cultural activities. For example, there are various museums which present art collections and historical artefacts, as well as displays dedicated to food.
The most important art gallery in Parma is the national gallery, which houses a lot of medieval works of art from important Italian artists, among which there is one from one of the greatest artists and men of all time, Leonardo Da Vinci.
Last but not least, Parma hosts one of the most ancient universities in the world, the University of Parma.
Parma’s climate: how’s the weather in Emilia-Romagna?
The climate is distinctly continental in the lowlands, with hot summers and cold, wet, foggy winters. Snowfalls are not absent in the city, with an average of about 35/40 cm (14/16 in) of snow each winter.
In the summer, avarage temperatures can be around 28ºC (82°F). While during winter can be around 6°C (43°F).
Transportations and connections while and after moving to Parma
Right outside the city, there is the Parma airport which, from March to October, is connected to some Italian cities (Cagliari, Catania, Trapani), the isle of Lampedusa and to Malta and Chişinău. For all the other destinations, there is the airport G. Marconi Bologna BLQ, located in Bologna, only one hour driving from Parma.
Parma is also well connected with the main Italian highways (A22, A14, A1…) that will enable you to easily reach some of Italy’s most attractive cities, such as Florence or Verona; the Riviera for your summer holidays, or the UNESCO world-heritage Dolomiti for your winter fun.
If, instead, you prefer travelling by train, in Parma there is also a railway station, with daily trains to both the North and the South of Italy.
Parma’s main public transport system is run by TEP. It mainly operates bus lines and some urban trolleybus routes. The “Happy Bus” service has been operating for a few years. This service similar to the one offered by the school bus. For a fee, it transports children with specifically set up buses with games and entertainment on the home-school route and back.
The service “Pollicino” is a service focused on the transportation of the disabled. It works on reservation. Moreover, it is always guaranteed even in case of strikes, and it also has nocturnal service. Since 2011 it passed under management of the Parma’s Public Assistance under the name “Pellicano”).
Other ways to move
Parma gives you more options in terms of mobility other then the traditional ways of moving: both electric and normal bicycles, and electric scooters are undoubtedly very popular means of individual transportation within the city, thanks in part to its completely flat terrain.
Getting around in “environmentally friendly” means of transport contributes significantly to the reduction of air pollution.
These kinds of ways to move around Parma, of course, are allowed by the urban structure of the city itself, which, despite hosting almost 200.000 people, has a network of roads, bike and pedestrian paths that can perfectly connect all the points of interest of the city.
Still not convinced?
If you are looking to move to Italy but worry about the application process for the Italian Visa or finding a new home, then don’t worry! Studio Arletti & Partners can help you during the entire process of relocating you and/or your entire family.