The magic of Ravenna lies in the Byzantine splendour which still lingers here and the remains of its ancient past, from when it represented a crossroads between the East and the West. The beauty of the mosaics for which the city is renowned throughout the world is a result of the extraordinary way in which they are made. Created from pieces of wood of varying shapes and materials together with gold and mother-of-pearl, they have an uneven surface meaning that the light reflects off them, creating a fascinating effect. The very emblem of the mosaic itself is perhaps the representation of Theodora at the court next to the Emperor. If you're interested in taking a closer look, be sure to stop off at the Basilica of San Vitale. Not far from there you'll also find the Basilica of Sant'Apollinare Nuovo and the Mausoleum of Galla Placidia, home to various mosaic decorations of interest. However, there's more to Ravenna than just its art; its 22 miles of beaches also make it a popular seaside destination.