Bologna is one of the most underrated cities in Italy. Despite its beautiful historic center, rich food culture, and lively yet relaxed atmosphere, it’s often overlooked by tourists. Bologna is a city that comes alive at night, with its quiet streets on the outskirts leading to lively piazzas. Founded in 1088, it is Europe’s oldest university town and has been a haven for intellectuals and creative types since luminaries such as Dante and Petrarch passed through in the 14th century. Throughout the historic center, street lights illuminate every nook and cranny with glowing shades of orange and gold and intriguing cast shadows that stir the imagination. Walk around and you'll see practically everyone in the city is outside - socializing until late, dining even later, or arm in arm on a quiet evening stroll.
The airport is named after Bologna native Guglielmo Marconi, an Italian electrical engineer and Nobel laureate. Bologna airport is an international airport serving the city of Bologna in Italy. It is approximately 6 km northwest of the city center in the Emilia-Romagna region of Italy and 200 km southeast of Milan. It only takes 25 minutes by bus from historical downtown where the airport connects Bologna to other main Italian and European airports. The shuttle service run by TPER runs every 11 minutes every day of the year connecting the airport with the city centre and railway station. A one-way ticket from/to the Airport € 6.00 (PSP349).
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Most tourists visit Bologna during early autumn. This is peak season so make sure to book your hotel room a few months early. You should also try avoiding the Cersaie week (September 24th - 30th), the Cosmoprof week (March 15th - 21st) as well as the Trade Fair week (October 15th - 23rd) as accommodations get particularly expensive during these dates. Travelers on a budget are recommended to visit Bologna during the late summer when temperatures are hot, but room rates are less expensive. During this time, the nightly cost of a room is approximately $90 (PSP4651). That's $15 (PSP775) saved per day compared to the room rates in September. Temperatures at this time will hover around 26˚C, slightly warmer than the average 24°C travelers would experience during high season. When visiting Bologna from February through April, don't forget to pack an umbrella since it rains on average 15 days each month.
1. Piazza Maggiore and Piazza del Nettuno - Piazza del Nettuno got its name from the magnificent Neptune Fountain located right in the heart of the Piazza. Created by Giambologna in the 16th century, it is one of the most elegant fountains of its period. Nearly every major attraction in the city is within a few minutes' walks, as are the most important streets - among them the busy shopping street, Via dell' Indipendenza, and Via Galleria with its many old aristocratic mansions. Elegantly arcaded Via dell'Archiginnasio runs alongside the magnificent Basilica of San Petronius; it is still unfinished facade dominates one side of Piazza Maggiore. On the north side is the former Palazzo del Podestà (Governors Palace) with a tower, Torre dell'Arengo, dating from 1259.
2. San Petronio (Basilica of St. Petronius) - When construction of the massive church that dominates one side of Piazza Maggiore began in 1390, it was designed to be even bigger than St. Peter's in Rome, but never entirely made it. In fact, it was never finished, and the facade remains incomplete. In the little museum at the back of the church, you can see the designs that were submitted for the facade, including those by the great architect Andrea Palladio. The interior, which was finished, is often referred to as the epitome of Gothic architecture in Italy, and each of the side chapels seems like a small church. Look for the strange line cutting across the floor of the nave; it is a meridian line.
3. Leaning Towers - The Leaning Tower of Pisa may be more famous, but Bologna has a pair of towers that appear to tilt even more alarmingly because of their narrow shape. They are the best-known of the 20 towers that remain of the more than 100 that formed Bologna's 12th-century skyline. Although they were necessary as both watchtowers and places of refuge in case of attack, their height also became status symbols for the noble families that built them. The 48-meter Torre Garisenda leans by more than 13 meters; you can climb the 498 steps inside Torre degli Asinelli for a bird's-eye view of Bologna.