Built on an ancient branch of river Po, Fratta Polesine preserves its agricultural origins. Many manor houses owned by noble families, such as the well-known Villa Badoer, built in 1556 and designed by Andrea Palladio and declared a UNESCO World Heritage Site in 1996, is the architectural heart around which the centre of Fratta Polesine was built.
Dominating the surrounding landscape, the manor stands out as it is raised above ground level. It was built on a stone basement in order to protect it from possible river flooding and amplify its scenic impact. The "Badoera", as it is often called, almost as if it were a personification, was a farm, controlling and managing the land, but at the same time, it was an emblem of the marriage between Francesco Badoer and Lucietta Loredan, husband and wife from two important Venetian families, as well as of the friendship between Francesco Badoer and his brother-in-law Giorgio Loredan. Their bond is celebrated by a fresco by Giallo Fiorentino displayed on the main floor.
The manor is a mix of simplicity and elegance which every year attracts tourists from all over the world, interested in seeing the work by the great master Andrea di Pietro della Gondola, known to us all as Palladio. The northern barn of the manor hosts the National Archaeological Museum, which holds findings of over 40 years of research in Polesine, particularly from the later Bronze Age.
Villa Loredan Grimani, now called Avezzù-Pignatelli, is another important example of Renaissance architecture, interesting also for its similarity to Villa Badoer. Inside Palazzo Dolfin-Boniotti, now called "Manegium", is the Ethnographic Museum dedicated to the civilization of work in Polesine.
Another noteworthy building is the residential house of the socialist deputy Giacomo Matteotti, now a Casa Museo (House-Museum).