Mantua together with Sabbioneta, was classified as World Heritage Site in 2008. Mantua shows the renewal and extension of an existing city. Typically, Mantua’s layout is irregular with regular parts showing different stages of its growth since the Roman period and includes many medieval edifices among them an 11th century rotunda and a Baroque theatre. Both cities offer exceptional testimonies to the urban, architectural and artistic realizations of the Renaissance, linked through the visions and actions of the ruling Gonzaga family. The two towns are important for the value of their architecture and for their prominent role in the dissemination of Renaissance culture. The ideals of the Renaissance, fostered by the Gonzaga family, are present in the towns’ morphology and architecture. - in: http://whc.unesco.org/en/list/1287
It is the town to which Romeo was banished in William Shakespeare's play Romeo and Juliet.