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Bologna Welcome Piazza Maggiore
Piazza Maggiore 1E
phone +39.051.6583111

Bologna Welcome Aeroporto
Via del Triumvirato 84
phone +39.051.6472201

Visiting Bologna in one day with a baby

Begin the tour with a breakfast at the cafeteria I Dolci di Nonna Vincenza. Continue along Strada Maggiore up to Corte Isolani, you cannot go wrong for its very high wooden porch!  Once there look at the top for the knight's arrow.

Go through the passage of Corte Isolani (note: if you are with a stroller, we suggest you take via Gerusalemme a street a little further down), you will come out at piazza Santo Stefano (Santo Stefano square). Are you in need of a baby-changing table? Take a break at the Caffè della Corte.

At this point you cannot miss a visit to the beautiful complex of the Basilica di Santo Stefano (Santo Stefano cathedral; also known as the "Seven Churches"): the children will be entertained by entering the different environments; in fact, they will have the impression of being more in a maze with churches and courtyards than in a cathedral. Here you will search for the sculptures of many animals (the cockerel, a lion, a deer, a peacock), of the three lazy soldiers and of the Three Wise Men made of coloured wood. A pair of scissors is also to be found...

Back in the square look out for the palace with the heads (Palazzo Bolognini): there are 26 of them, between gods and warriors; there is even the head of the devil!

Continue in via Santo Stefano up to piazza della Mercanzia. In this quaint intersection of roads the two towers stand out: you can climb the torre degli Asinelli (the Asinelli tower characterized by 498 steps that are quite steep, free entrance for children under 1 metre in height); if you want to take a coffee break or you need to change your baby, continue up to Les Pupitres cafeteria where children will also find a nice corner with games at their disposal.

Then wander in the narrow streets of the old Jewish ghetto: look out for the hidden towers (you should know that Bologna was also called the "Turrita" for the more than 100 towers and tower-houses built in the Middle Ages) and reach via Altabella where you will find many pubs among which the inn Pane, Vino e San Daniele where you can enjoy the typical crescentine (raised dough) of the Emilia-Romagna region accompanied by cold cuts, cheeses and much more: you can even bring things with you from outside for your children (the owner is very available), and the Cocoà.

Continue up to via Indipendenza and admire the perspective: piazza Maggiore will open on your left. But first take a stroll up to the Mercato delle Erbe (Herb Market) passing through via Manzoni and via Belvedere. Head back towards piazza Maggiore taking via Ugo Bassi.

Once arrived in piazza Nettuno (Neptune square), where you find the homonymous fountain, to your left you will see the Palazzo Re Enzo, a palace which took its name from the king who was captured by the Bolognese following the battle of Fossalta in 1249; although treated like a king, he was imprisoned in the palace - his "golden prison" - until his death.

Go under the Voltone del Podestà (Vault of the Mayor) and impress your children by playing at the wireless telephone beneath the arches:  position yourself at opposite corners of the vault and whisper some words and you will hear something magical...

Then raise your head to look for the gallows: that was where people used to be hanged.

Overlooking the so-called "crescentone" you will see the impressive basilica di San Petronio (San Petronio cathedral): the children will like the solar meridian crossing the floor of the church and that is illuminated by the sun, every day at noon, due to a hole in the ceiling.

Go up to the first floor of Palazzo d'Accursio to enjoy a beautiful view of the square.
The lift is available to the visitors, but if you can, don't miss the sixteenth century scala del Bramante (Bramante stairway) that the representatives of the city government used to go through on horseback as a triumphal entrance.
In case needed, always on the first floor, you will find a nursery room to change the diaper or breastfeed your baby.

After visiting these sights you can make a stop at the Sala Borsa (entrance near the Neptune fountain): a library, which is an important meeting spot for all the children and young people of the city. Children will like the glass floor through which the archaeological excavations can be seen. You will find a baby room with a breastfeeding chair, feeding bottle warmer, a fairly large space with soft cushions and lots of books to entertain your children. Also available is a bathroom for children equipped with a baby-changing table (the keys are in the baby room).

Continue your visit in via dell'Archiginnasio where the homonymous library is found: interesting is the visit to the Teatro Anatomico (Anatomical Theatre) where the future doctors once performed human dissections.  The via dell'Archiginnasio runs along piazza Galvani: look for the big spiderweb! Go down the elegant via Farini, overlooking the shops of the main haute couture firms, cross piazza Minghetti and you will find yourself to be in front of Palazzo Pepoli, seat of the Museum of the History of Bologna.

Symbolically tie your horse to the large rings located on the façade of the building (the one near the door used to be adopted instead for the flags) and enter the museum, which has only recently been opened. The children will like the movie in 3D with the Etruscan character Apa, who tells the story of the city as well as the visual and acoustic space of the city of the water. The museum is of good quality, the teaching style involving for the whole family.
The strollers must be left in the cloakroom and, at the time, baby carriers are not supplied.

To end such a day full of adventures exploring a city of ancient traditions, head towards the vie del Quadrilatero (streets of the Quadrilateral) for a typical aperitif in the numerous bars of the neighbourhood or cross via Rizzoli up to Cocoà in via Altabella

Palazzo Isolani

Overlooking Santo Stefano Square (also known as the Sqaure of the Seven Churches), Palazzo Isolani offers since centuries its porches to one of the most beautiful walks around Bologna.

address: Corte Isolani, 5 - 40125 Bologna (BO) rif map iat: D-5 ph: +39 051 230579 email: info@isolani.it website: www.isolani.it opening hours: Visitable for groups by appointment, location for private events and business

Complesso di Santo Stefano

Also known as the "Seven churches", the Basilica of St. Stefano is the most peculiar church complex in Bologna.
Its origins are still a moot point. For someone it was built in 430 when the bishop Petronio decided to raise a building to be divided into seven churches, which were supposed to symbolically represent the places of Christ’s Passion, as testified by its ancient name “Sacra Hierusalem”.
Another theory states that the Basilica was built by Saint Petronio, but on the ruins of a pre-existent pagan temple.

address: Via Santo Stefano, 24 - 40125 Bologna (BO) rif map iat: D-5 ph: +393483206571 email: abbaziasstefano@gmail.com website: abbaziasstefano.wixsite.com/abbaziasstefano opening hours: The church complex 9am-12:30pm e 2:30pm-7pm During the religious services, the tourist visit could be limited or suspended. Opening times can be subjected to little changes. For further information please call: +393483206571. entrance:

free donation

Palazzo della Mercanzia

Seat of the Chamber of Commerce, Industry, Agriculture and Crafts, Palazzo della Mercanzia has governed trading and business activities of Bologna since the late 14th century.

address: Piazza Della Mercanzia, 4 - 40125 Bologna (BO) rif map iat: D-4 ph: +39 051 6093111 fax: +39 051 6093451 website: www.bo.camcom.it opening hours: possible only in the hall / groups only on request

Le due Torri: Garisenda e degli Asinelli

The two towers Garisenda and Asinelli are the traditional symbol of Bologna, strategically standing where the old Aemilian way entered the town. In the late 12th century, at least one hundred towers dotted the town's skyline, but today only twenty have survived the ravages of fire, warfare and lightning.

address: Piazza di Porta Ravegnana - 40126 Bologna (BO) rif map iat: D-4 website: www.duetorribologna.com opening hours: TORRE DEGLI ASINELLI Till 3 November 2019 9:30am-7:30pm; entrance open every 45 minutes - last entrance at 6:30am From 4 November 2019 to 29 February 2020 9:30am-5:45pm; entrance open every 45 minutes - last entrance at 5:00am From 1 March 2020 to 2 November 2020 9am-7:30pm; entrance open every 45 minutes - last entrance at 6:30pm TORRE GARISENDA: not accessible entrance:

TORRE DEGLI ASINELLI

  • Free admission: Bologna Welcome Card PLUS and Card EASY holders; disabled people and helpers; authorized touristic guides; leaders of groups of minimum 20 people; children under 4 years old
  • Full price: € 5.00 per person
  • Reduced: € 3.00 (under 12 and over 65; school trips; university students; groups of minimum 20 people; Card Musei Metropolitani holders)

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 under the Two Towers.

address: Via dell'Inferno - 40126 Bologna (BO) rif map iat: C - 4 ph: +39 051 2911280 fax: +39 051 235430 email: info@museoebraicobo.it website: www.museoebraicobo.it/

Piazza Nettuno

Piazza del Nettuno was given this name because it was built to give prominence to Statua del Nettuno, the statue that may be seen at its centre.

address: Piazza del Nettuno - 40124 Bologna (BO) rif map iat: D-3/4

Palazzo Re Enzo

Palazzo Re Enzo was built between 1244-46 (when also Palazzo del Capitano del Popolo was raised  as an extension of the Municipal buildings. The palace was also known as  'new palace' to differentiate it from Palazzo del Podestà. Just three years later the palace became the 'residence' of the King taken prisoner in the battle of Fossalta: Re Enzo from Sardinia, son of Federico II.

address: Piazza del Nettuno, 1/c - 40125 Bologna (BO) rif map iat: D-4 opening hours: Admission only during exhibitions

Palazzo del Podestà

This was the first seat of the town government, represented by the Podestà and his judges and officers.

address: Piazza Maggiore, 1 - 40124 Bologna (BO) rif map iat: D-4 opening hours: Admission only during exhibitions

Basilica di San Petronio

Named in honour of Bologna patron saint Petronio - 8th bishop of the city from 431 to 450, the Basilica is the most imposing (a length of 132m, a width of 66m, a height of 47m) and important church in Bologna.

address: Piazza Maggiore - 40124 Bologna (BO) rif map iat: D-4 ph: +39 051 231415 website: www.basilicadisanpetronio.it/index.html opening hours: Basilica di San Petronio Monday to Friday 7:45am-1:30pm and 3.30pm-6:30pm Saturday: 7:45am-1:30pm and 2:30pm-6:30pm Sunday 7:45am-1:30pm and 2:30pm-7:00pm During the religious services, the tourist visit could be limited or suspended. Opening times can be subjected to little changes. For further information:  +39 051 6480611 Curia Arcivescovile info@basilicadisanpetronio.org  Panoramic terrace (54 meters in height) - entrance on the side Piazza Galvani. Access is by lift or by stairs (from the scaffold) Monday-Thursday: 10am-1pm, 2.30pm-6pm Friday-Sunday: 10am-1pm, 2:30pm-6:30pm Opening hours can be changed on the occasion of special events. Cappella dei Magi Every day 9am - 5pm At the entrance, Police controls are possible of backpacks and bags. In case of visit it is advisable not to bring large backpacks and bags with you. entrance:

Basilica di San Petronio
Free entrance - Foto ticket € 2

Cappella dei Magi
Admission ticket € 3.00 - Group € 1

Panoramic terrace*
Admission ticket € 3.00
Free entrance: Bologna Welcome Card PLUS holders, Amici di San Petronio members, priests, monks, children up to 12.
*The visit takes approximately 30 minutes. Access to the panoramic terrace is allowed to max. 25 persons at the same time. 

For groups reservation is required.
 +39 346 5768400 every day from 10am to 6pm
prenotazioni@basilicadisanpetronio.org

Palazzo d'Accursio o Comunale

The Town Hall consists of a set of buildings, that over the centuries have gradually been joined to the oldest acquired by the city at the end of the thirteenth century. Including among other things, Accursio’s home, teacher of law, at the University of Bologna. It was originally intended to keep the public reserve, "some grain-growing and municipal offices”. In 1336 it became the residence of the Elders, the highest judiciary of the City Government and is the seat of city government.

address: Piazza Maggiore, 6 - 40121 Bologna (BO) rif map iat: D-4 ph: + 39 051 203040 website: www.comune.bologna.it/ opening hours: Sala Rossa - Sala d'Ercole - Sala Farnese and Cappella Palatina: visits on request, when available (ask to the guardians); Sala del Consiglio Comunale: from Tuesday to Thursday + Saturday and Sunday 10.00am -1.00pm, Monday and Friday closed; Collezioni Comunali D'Arte, Appartamenti del Cardinale Legato: see information on museums. Ex Sala Borsa: Entrance from Piazza Nettuno:  Monday from 2,30pm to 8pm; from Tuesday to Friday: 10am - 8pm (last admission at 7,45 pm), Saturday 10am - 7pm (last admission at 6,45 pm). Closing days: Mondays morning and holidays. Details (in Italian) Archaeological excavations under Piazza Coperta are open to the public on Monday from 3pm to 6,30pm; from Tuesday to Saturday: 10am - 1,30pm and 3pm - 6,30pm. Closing days: Mondays morning and holidays (they can always be seen from the glass floor in the Covered Square).  entrance:

admission is free except for Collezioni Comunali d'Arte (Museo Morandi temporarily transfered to MAMbo)

Salaborsa

Biblioteca Salaborsa is the central public library funded by the municipality of Bologna. It opened in 2001 and provides a rich and fascinating cultural space inside Palazzo d'Accursio, the ancient and historical seat of the city government.

address: Piazza Nettuno, 3 - 40124 Bologna (BO) rif map iat: D-5 ph: +39 051 2194400 fax: +39 051 2194420 website: www.bibliotecasalaborsa.it/home.php opening hours: Biblioteca Salaborsa:Monday from 2,30pm to 8pm; from Tuesday to Friday: 10am - 8pm (last admission at 7,45 pm), Saturday 10am - 7pm (last admission at 6,45 pm). Closing days: Mondays morning and holidays. Details (in Italian) From the 1st to the 9th and from the 19th to the 31st August 2019 the Biblioteca Salaborsa is open from Monday to Friday from 2:30pm to 8pm (kids room until 7pm).
The Salaborsa is totally closed every Saturday of August and during the week from the 12th to the 18th of August 2019.
entrance:

free

Palazzo dell'Archiginnasio

The construction of the Palace was commissioned by Cardinal Borromeo between 1562 and 1563 following the project by architect Antonio Morandi called Terribilia; it was to house the lecture halls for the University Study (Law and Arts). Up to 1803 it was the seat of the University and since 1838 it has been housing the Civic Library.

address: Piazza Galvani, 1 - 40124 Bologna (BO) rif map iat: D-4 ph: +39 051 276811 fax: +39 051 261160 email: bimu.comune.bologna.it/biblioweb/palazzo-archiginnasio/ website: www.archiginnasio.it/ opening hours: Palace (courtyard and open gallery) Monday to Friday 9 am - 7 pm Saturday 10 am - 7 pm Sunday and holidays 10 am - 2 pm Access to the library: see opening hours Anatomical Theatre and Stabat Mater Hall (if not occupied by events) Monday to Friday 10 am - 6 pm Saturday 10 am - 7 pm Sunday and holidays 10 am - 2 pm 2019 HOLIDAY OPENING TIMES Sunday 8 December from 10am to 6pm 25 December CLOSED Thursday 26 December from 10am to 6pm Wednesday 1 January from 2pm to 6pm Monday 6 January from 10am to 6pm entrance:

Admission ticket to Anatomical Theatre and Stabat Mater Hall € 3
(if not occupied by events)

Free admission:

  • Tourist guides with badge
  • Journalist with badge
  • 1 person for each group of 10 people
  • Classes of secondary schools
  • 2 people for each school group
  • Young people up to 18 years old
  • Disabled people and their helpers
  • Icom members with valid card
  • Musei Metropolitani Card owners

Palazzo Pepoli Vecchio (Palazzo Pepoli. Museo della Storia di Bologna)

Heart of Genus Bononiae, Palazzo Pepoli. Museo della Storia di Bologna houses a museum dedicated to the history, culture and transformations of Bologna, from the ‘Felsina etrusca’ to modern times.

address: via Castiglione 8-10 - 40124 Bologna (BO) rif map iat: D-4 ph: +39 051 19936370 email: msb@genusbononiae.it, info@genusbononiae.it website: www.genusbononiae.it opening hours: Tuesday to Sunday 10am to 7pm August 2019: open from Tuesday to Sunday from 10am to 7pm, open on Thursday 15 August from 10am to 7pm entrance:
  • Free for Bologna Welcome Card holders 
  • Combined and single tickets are available for all museums of Genus Bononiae. Info (in Italian) on www.genusbononiae.it
  • Palazzo Pepoli. Museo della Storia di Bologna, Palazzo Fava. Palazzo delle Esposizioni, San Colombano. Collezione Tagliavini, Santa Maria della Vita are part of the Musei Metropolitani Card circuit. details

*During temporary exhibitions the ticket is reduced