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Pet-friendly Bologna

Updated on 22 February 2024 From Bologna Welcome

With its historic buildings and lush green areas, Bologna is the ideal city to be visited with your four-legged friend. Below are a few tips to explore the old town, visit museums, join a variety of events or relax in green areas...


Visit the old town and the UNESCO Porticoes

We suggest you start with a long stroll in the charming and multi-faceted old town. Starting from the famous Garisenda and Asinelli Towers (no entry allowed with animalsa symbol of the city, take a walk along the characteristic roads in the Quadrilatero, to the iconic Piazza Maggiore, with the beautiful Basilica di San PetronioPalazzo d’Accursio and Palazzo del Podestà.

If you feel in need of a break, we suggest a stop in the courtyard of Palazzo d’Accursio, the traditional seat of the Bologna town hall, whose fascinating green area will allow you to delve into the atmosphere of the past. From Piazza del Nettuno you can enter the modern Salaborsa multimedia library with your dog in tow (on a leash and muzzled). 

You can continue your walk along the city Porticoes, part of UNESCO World Heritage, which also offer shelter from the sun. A landmark you should not miss is the Baroque-style Santuario di San Luca. It is an ideal route for your four-legged friend, who will enjoy the long walk and make the most of the numerous thirst-quenching small water fountains along the way, and also for you as a chance to visit a truly unique place of worship in the world.

A few kilometres from the city centre, after a relatively short walk, you can reach the complex of San Michele in Bosco, which offers a breath-taking view from the city from above.
Around the complex there is a large green area, ideal for you doggy.

If you are not so keen on long walks, you can still make the most of the main sights in the city comfortably sitting on tourist busses and small trains, organised by City Redbus, which cross the old town – including pedestrian areas – up to San Luca. Also your furry friend will enjoy the tourist ride (free of charge for small pets).


Dogs & Museums, dog-sitting and pet-friendly museums         

Visiting museums while travelling with your dog can prove a challenge, because there are very few who let them in; the network of Museums in Bologna has found a solution with dog sitting Dogs & Museums, in partnership with the web portal Bauadvisor. This service makes it possible to book for your pet assistance from specialised dog sitters, waiting for you at the entrance to the museum. All you need to do book via the website

On the other hand, if you would rather not leave your pet alone and are looking for a museum you can visit together, we recommend Luigi Fantini’s Museo dei Botroidi, in Pianoro, just outside Bologna.
The museum offers a geological pathway through which you can get to know the history of the earth: a journey through 80 million years of history, with anthropomorphic sandstone rocks, fossils, yellow sands, mysterious stones. The Museum allows up to three pets per visitor.

Let your dog free to explore the parks and green areas in town

Parks are undoubtedly another very strong point in the city of Bologna, most notably the celebrated Giardini Margherita and Parco della Montagnola, where you can go for a walk with your dog and enjoy green areas with a typical Bologna flavour. It is worth noting that many parks in town include enclosures where you can let your dog run freely. For example, in the old town, there are dedicated areas for dogs in Parco della Montagnola and in Parco 11 Settembre. Follow this link for a complete list

If you get a chance to wander out of the city centre, we recommend the extensive and fascinating Parco della Chiusa, along the Chiusa di Casalecchio, one of the most interesting and significant “water archaeology” sites in Europe, just a few miles from Bologna; or also the Parco dei Gessi Bolognesi, with its gullies and caves, from where you can also enjoy an enchanting view of the city. Also consider taking your dog along one of the celebrated Apennine trekking routes, for example the famous Via degli Dei (connecting the city to Florence), or the longer Via della Lana e della Seta (which reaches the city of Prato), with numerous sites rich in history and culture, as well as wonderful landscapes.

You have no excuse now: get hold of a leash and enjoy the city with your four-legged friend!

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