It is called “the learned” because it holds the record for the oldest university in Europe , where Dante, Petrarch, Pascoli and Pasolini all studied. It is also called “the fat” due to its gluttonous gastronomic tradition , constituted by tortellini in brodo, tagliatelle al ragù, lasagne, mortadella sausage and squacquerone cheese, accompanied by tigelle bread and fried gnocchi, all washed down by a bottle of Pignoletto or Lambrusco. Last but not least, it is called “the red” because of the colour of its roofs and its traditional left-leaning politics.
Bologna is a truly unique city, with an exceptionally rich cultural, artistic and culinary heritage, and a vibrant social calendar throughout the year. It is a Mediaeval city laced with Romantic charm, criss-crossed by more than 40 km of arches and colonnades lining the main thoroughfares, just waiting to be discovered on foot. Lauded by poets and singers, you can admire it from above if you can brave the climb to the top of the Asinelli Tower , which is used as the symbol of the city. You can also lose yourself amid its markets – the largest of which is the Mercato della Piazzola in Montagnola Park – and take a stroll around the monuments of the impressive square that is Piazza Maggiore.
When the sun shines, you can climb onto the saddle of a bicycle or motorbike to savour the spectacle of the green hills surrounding the city, or take a trip outside the city to Faenza, where the ancient craft traditions of pottery are very much alive and kicking.
Climb the 498 steps of the Asinelli Tower, the symbol of Bologna, and look over the city from above
Take a walk round Piazza Maggiore, the heart of Bologna, with its wealth of monuments
Look out over the Moline Canal from the famous window on Via Piella
Indulge in some retail therapy under the colonnades on Via dell'Indipendenza
Lose yourself in the streets and alleys on a vintage bicycle
Go to a concert at the Imola racetrack
Eat a roll with mortadella sausage on the hillsides of Bologna
Visit MAMbo, Bologna’s Museum of Modern Art
Savour one of the many Bolognese specialities in the quaint Mezzo market
Stroll under the colonnade of San Luca, all the way to the Sanctuary of the Madonna, on the Colle (hill) della Guardia