Welcome is Bologna

History and culture routes

Discover Bologna with Mum and Dad

Discover Bologna with Mum and Dad

A walk through children’s favourite museums and new corners, to be discovered. A city that knows how to involve also children, protagonists of events and initiatives like the world-famous Zecchino d’Oro music contest.

The former Jewish ghetto

The former Jewish ghetto

The layout of Bologna's 16th century ghetto can still be precisely traced amid the narrow streets in the medieval heart of the city. Here, a maze of alleys, covered bridges and small windows tell the story of a whole community forced to live in a specific area of the town by order of the Papal State beginning from 1556.

The motor Valley

The motor Valley

A route to discover the most important factories and museums dedicated to engines.

Walking in the "T" area: Via Rizzoli

Walking in the "T" area: Via Rizzoli

The T Days are a unique chance to rediscover an important part of the historical centre of Bologna. The streets of the "T" area are closed to traffic on weekends and public holidays.

Walking in the "T" area: Via Ugo Bassi

Walking in the "T" area: Via Ugo Bassi

The T Days are a unique chance to rediscover and appreciate for the first time the specificity of an important part of the historical center of Bologna, the streets of the "T" area totally restricted to the traffic on the weekends and on public holidays.

Walking in the "T" area: Via Indipendenza

Walking in the "T" area: Via Indipendenza

The T Days are a unique chance to rediscover and appreciate for the first time the specificity of an important part of the historical center of Bologna, the streets of the "T" area totally restricted to the traffic on the weekends and on public holidays.

Bologna towers tour

Bologna towers tour

Bologna the turreted city. This route will immerse you into medieval Bologna as you pass the Two Towers, as described by Dante. Of the approximately 100 towers built in Bologna around the twelfth century now there are 24, which have an unmistakable presence in the city.

The British side of Bologna

The British side of Bologna

Attracted by the antique charm, the English have come to Italy since the crusades. Bologna, a university and music town, continued to have visitors even during the XVIth century, after the split between the Catholic and the Anglican church. In the XVIIIth and XIXth century they are fascinated by the artistic and natural beauties and by the cuisine of the city.

Bologna – San Luca

Bologna – San Luca

From the city center there is a path, which reaches the Sanctuary of San Luca, the traditional destination for religious pilgrimages linked to the devotion of the Blessed Virgin. The route includes an excursion inside the Park Talon.

Bologna City of Music

Bologna City of Music

Bologna has such a rich musical tradition that it was named Unesco creative city of music, both for its past excellence and for the great variety of today’s proposals.

Bologna and its "scattered" University

Bologna and its "scattered" University

Avidly visited by the Romantic writers and celebrated for the arts and culinary excellence, Bologna is animated by a cosmopolitan culture that is enriched by the presence of the University.

The porticoes of Bologna

The porticoes of Bologna

The porticoes, nominated as Unesco “world heritage site”, make the city of Bologna unique in the world. Lights and shadows, deep architectural perspectives, different columns and capitals create fascinating and extraordinary urban images.

The squares of Bologna

The squares of Bologna

Squares have always been places for meetings and clashes, a natural stage for events, extremely versatile and ever changing over time, always in the heart of the city life.

Discover the Etruscans

Discover the Etruscans

There are still important traces of the long Etruscan history in Bologna dating between the 9th and 4th century BC. To discover these roots of ancient Bologna, the Etruscan city in the Po Valley, you need to search deeply, especially in the museums of the city and of the province.

Archaeology

Archaeology

A representation of Bologna’s archaeological sites from the early Villanovian settlements, to the Etruscan "Felsina", or to the Roman "Bononia"...Though sometimes they are not accessible to visitors, many traces of the ancient Bologna speak of the city's history through the centuries.

Contemporary Architecture in Bologna

Contemporary Architecture in Bologna

The respectful dialogue between Ancient and New can be perceived throughout the entire urban fabric of Bologna, as it is enriched by important works of contemporary architecture.

Audio guides

Audio guides

On this page you can walk around the city by downloading routes in audio format for your MP3 player.

Magic Bologna

Magic Bologna

The most mysterious side of Bologna unveils along its alleys through the secret stories of alchemists, astrologers, witches and heretics who are the custodians of an ancient and forgotten culture.

Bononia the Roman city

Bononia the Roman city

Best known for its past connected to the Middle Ages and the Renaissance, Bologna still shows, in the old town, some remains dating back to the Roman age: architectural structures, road sections, fragments of mosaics and artefacts displayed in its museums which tell the story of the ancient Bononia, founded in 189 BC.

Women in the shade of the Two Towers

Women in the shade of the Two Towers

The lives of many women are interwoven with the history of the city. All of their lives are linked by a common thread: passion. Passion for art, for knowledge, for fame, for a man, for justice or freedom. Here are some of their stories.

The oldest University in Europe through its places

The oldest University in Europe through its places

Discovering the University of Bologna through its places and streets.
The University and the city of Bologna are deeply linked by an intense relationship through centuries. When visiting Bologna, it is therefore interesting to see some of historical places and to know some facts that made the University of Bologna famous worldwide.

Bologna and the Cinema

Bologna and the Cinema

The film which launches Bologna as an architectural set at a national level is Hanno rubato un tram (They stole a tram) (1954). The comedy, directed by and starring in the lead role Aldo Fabrizi, is shot in a black and white tonality which enhances the monumental scenery of the town.

The city of records

The city of records

In its century-old history Bologna has recorded a series of records which depict it as a city extraordinarily advanced, innovative and rich in culture, societal development, law, economics and politics.

The geology of Bologna

The geology of Bologna

“La creta, la selenite e l'arenaria / Di qui nasce il colore di Bologna / Nei tramonti brucia torri e aria […]”
“Clay, selenite and sandstone / The colour of Bologna comes from that / Towers and the air burn in the sunset […]”  Roberto Roversi


City gates

City gates

Parts of the “third wall”, which was built at the beginning of the 13th century and demolished at the beginning of the 20th century, is visible through the ten gates. The ten gates can be seen from the ring boulevard around Bologna’s historic city centre.

The city gates (Castiglione, Santo Stefano, Maggiore, San Vitale, San Donato, Mascarella, Galliera, Lame, San Felice, Saragozza) are the only remaining relic of the walls that had protected the town for seven centuries. The San Mamolo and Sant'Isaia gates do not exist anymore.

Mathematical Bologna

Mathematical Bologna

Like the chapters of a math handbook, the buildings of the historic city centre trace geometrical shapes, hide calculations and tell stories of special characters. A stroll through the city centre can turn into a quest for shapes, numbers and connections.

Valle del Limentra

Valle del Limentra

This itinerary winds through a fascinating portion of the Apennines along the dividing line between Emilia Romagna and Tuscany: sacred and secular architecture, natural beauty, charming villages adorned with the handiwork of Comacine master stonemasons.

Villas, historical residences and theatres

Villas, historical residences and theatres

Bologna is more than a façade... With its rich patrimony of palaces, historical residences and villas, as well as the manifold still existing towers, the city contains many fascinating hidden corners such as courtyards, stairs and beautiful detailed rooms.

Downloadable themed itineraries

Downloadable themed itineraries

There are manifold titles in the collection of free themed itineraries, available at the info point Bologna Welcome di Piazza Maggiore or in pdf downloadable files.