10 must-see things in Bologna

5 things to do in Bologna

Bologna is the capital of the Emilia-Romagna region in Italy and a foodie paradise! There are a lot of things to do, eat and see in Bologna.  

In October 2018 I went on a citytrip with my cousin to Bologna for 5 days. Now I know this seems like a long time. 3 days exploring Bologna is more then enough to get a good taste of the city. So, the other days we took the train and visited Modena, and we also explored Florence for a day. These cities are very easy to reach by train and are a great getaway. A train ticket will cost you about 15 euros.

In this blog I will share with you 5 things to do when you are in Bologna!

DRINK COFFEE AT PIAZZA SAN MAGIORRE

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This lovely Italian square is one of the best places to watch people and get a real sense of the city. So, get yourself a cup of coffee, and a chocolate croissant, of course, and watch the locals get on with their day.

The square is surrounded on all sides by porticos, palazzos, and churches. You certainly won’t miss Basilica di San Petronio. This is this the most important church of Bologna and one of the largest in Europe. You can enter the church for free but if you want to take pictures it will cost you about €2,- which goes to the restoration of the church.

Located in the corner of the square you’ll find the Fountain of Neptune which is one of the most iconic landmarks in Bologna.

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CLIMB THE ASINELLI TOWER

In the heart of the historical city center you will find two very thin and tall buildings. The tallest one is called the Asinelli Tower and the smaller one is called the Garisenda Tower. Like all famous towers in Italy this one isn’t 100% straight. It has a 1.3 degree incline which is perfectly visible when you look at the 97.2 meter tall building.  

You can only climb the Asinelli tower, the tallest one. Ones you have climbed to 498 steps you will get a beautiful 360 degree view over the entire city. And no, there is no lift. You will have to climb those steps. A great workout to burn off all the pastas and pizzas.

A ticket costs €5,- for one hour inside the tower. You can buy tickets directly at Piazza San Magiorre or get them online. We were there in October so we got the tickets at the same day we climbed to tower. But when you there during the summer months I suggest you buy the tickets in advance.

WALK UNDER THE BEAUTIFUL PORTICOS AND VISIT

The beautiful porticos is what’s Bologna known for. These gorgeous covered archways make navigating through the city very easy. In the summer the protect you from the heat and when it’s raining they will keep you dry.

RENT A BIKE AND VISIT SAN LUCA

After excessive walking around the city we decided to rent some bicycles. We are Dutch after all. Also, it is a great way to explore a big city like Bologna. We headed to the beautiful the Sanctuary of the Madonna di San Luca. You can also walk to San Luca through the longest stretch of porticoes in the world! 666 porticos stretched over 3500 meters called Portico di San Luca. It was built for pilgrims to get to the church.

The sanctuary is located on a hill so we were little out of breath when we got there. But is was well worth the ride. Gorgeous views over the city and surrounding landscapes. 

WATCH THE SUNSET OVER THE CITY AT PARCO SAN PELLIGRINO

After exploring the beautiful San Luca church we drove down hill and went to Parco di San Pelligrino to watch the sunset. We parked our bicycles and walked all the way up. It was very quiet and peaceful. There were only a few locals walking their dogs. In the distance you can see San Luca.

The exact spot where we took the pictures is called Trecento Scalini. The perfect place to escape the city and go for a picknick. 

Bologna is a beautiful city and still a bit underrated in my opinion. So, pack your bags and book a citytrip to Bologna!

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