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Things to do in Metropolitan City of Bologna

Top recommendations from locals

From sightseeing to hidden gems, find out what makes the city unique with the help of the locals who know it best.
Plaza
“Piazza Maggiore is located at the very centre of Bologna and it's one of the most beautiful and lively squares in Italy. In the past, the square underwent many changes and was further enriched with important buildings: Basilica di San Petronio, Palazzo dei Notai, Palazzo d'Accursio, Palazzo del Podestà and Palazzo dei Bianchi. When there, do not miss to pay a visit to Fontana del Nettuno and Biblioteca Salaborsa as well! ”
  • 118 locals recommend
Art Gallery
“Morandi! And ... The Museo di Arte Moderna di Bologna, the city’s modern art museum, has an excellent bar. It is a great place to go to for an aperitivo. The crowd is fun, young and intelligent, the food is splendidly healthy and filling, and the music is unbeatable. Instead of typical Italian charcuterie, cheese and bread with toppings, here the emphasis of the aperitivo experience is centered around vegetables and salads. Although, there is other food as well. There is a charming outdoors area that is perfect for the warmer months.”
  • 112 locals recommend
Farmers Market
“It is a food market but inside you can also find restaurants and wine bars. ”
  • 138 locals recommend
Church
“Take a walk, a long walk if you want to see the longest portico in the world. The view is the final reward.”
  • 142 locals recommend
Bus Stop
“It is the largest and certainly the most popular city park. It was designed by the Piedmontese Sambuy to provide Bologna with an ample green and public place as in other Italian and European cities. It was opened in 1879 with the name of “Passeggio Regina Margherita” ( as a tribute to the wife of King Umberto I).”
  • 108 locals recommend
Historic Site
“If you're not too lasy climbing all the steps, you'll have a wonderfull view of Bologna. You will distinguish very easily the hills, all rooftops, the parks and so on...”
  • 68 locals recommend
Bus Stop
“The Torre degli Asinelli and the Garisenda are one of the biggest attractions of the Emilian capital, strategically placed at the entrance to the city from the ancient Via Emilia. Erected between 1109 and 1119, as a symbol of power and prestige of the aristocratic families whose name they bear, the towers are today the main destination for tourists visiting Bologna. The highest of the two is the Torre degli Asinelli (97.20 meters), consisting of an internal stairway of 498 steps: climbing up to the top you can admire the whole city from above, and some say that, in the days more clear, even the Alps and the Adriatic Sea can be seen. ”
  • 61 locals recommend
Gourmet Shop
“The Mercato di Mezzo is one of the most representative historical places of the Bolognese food culture, a stone's throw from Piazza Maggiore: since the Middle Ages this has been the place of tastes and encounter, commerce, memory and gastronomic tradition of the city . Transformed, after the Unification of Italy, in the first covered market of the city, it was the object in 2014 of an important recovery and redevelopment project. The structure is divided into three floors, and is a space where to buy or consume food and wine products and excellent dishes. On the ground floor there are large and small tables in common use and food kiosks, placed in the side niches as in the nineteenth-century plan: meat, fish, salami, cheese, fruit, bread, pasta, ice cream and pastry, wines. On the first floor is the pizzeria and in the basement, with striking barrel vaults, a craft brewery, both with additional tables and chairs. On Via Clavature, next to the entrance to the Church of Santa Maria della Vita, it also offers pleasant tables and outdoor chairs. The Mercato di Mezzo is open seven days a week, from 8.30 until midnight, and often offers tasting appointments and meetings related to the culture of food.”
  • 65 locals recommend
Church
“he Basilica of San Petronio is the main church of Bologna, northern Italy. It dominates the Piazza Maggiore. It is the sixth largest church in the world, stretching for 132 meters in length and 60 meters in width, while the vault reaches 45 meters inside and 51 meters in the facade. It can contain about 28,000 persons. The basilica is dedicated to the patron saint of the city, Saint Petronius, who was the bishop of Bologna in the fifth century. The construction was a communal project of Bologna, not of the bishops. The property was a symbol of communal power that was not transferred from the city to the diocese until 1929; the basilica was finally consecrated in 1954. It has been the seat of the relics of Bologna's patron saint only since 2000. The interior is notable for a Madonna with Saints by Lorenzo Costa the Younger and a Pietà by Amico Aspertini. Also the colours of the walls and the stained glass windows are noteworthy. The choir was made in 15th century by Agostino de' Marchi, while the ciborium is a work by Vignola. "(The above description is based on Wikipedia under Creative Common License)"”
  • 42 locals recommend
Park
“Our green lung in downtown Bologna. You can walk, run, train or eat an ice cream or relax taking an aperitif surrounded by the most beautiful park in town”
  • 47 locals recommend
Route
“Via Indipendenza is the main street of Bologna. It starts from Piazza Maggiore and ends at the railway station. It has been completed in 1890 when the city became an important railway junction. Now via Indipendenza is the heart of the shopping area: under its porticoes, protecting pedestrians on both sides of the street, you’ll find many low-cost clothes shops, designer labels, small shops, fast food and sandwiches bar. Via Indipendenza is always very popular among Bologna people of all ages: we suggest to take a walk there!”
  • 50 locals recommend
Library
“Don’t forget to enter in the Salaborsa public library and also in its kids section. ”
  • 71 locals recommend
Trattoria/Osteria
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“Cheap and cheerful place with an always changing menu of typical dishes and bruschette, always very crowded and they don’t accept reservations”
  • 65 locals recommend
Library
“The former university headquarters and the place where are stored the family stems. When you enter this place you can feel a Hogwarts’ atmosphere.”
  • 60 locals recommend
Wine Bar
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“The oldest historic tavern in Bologna, with a special atmosphere. They only offer wines but you can bring food and eat inside. ”
  • 98 locals recommend
Road
“Via del Pratello is well know for nightclubbing, social events, street foods! Visit it during the evening / night for funny moments!”
  • 70 locals recommend

Top restaurants

Trattoria/Osteria
“Cheap and cheerful place with an always changing menu of typical dishes and bruschette, always very crowded and they don’t accept reservations”
  • 65 locals recommend
Jazz Club
“Did you know that Bologna is famous for Jazz? Yes, this is the place if you want to taste the traditional dishes with a great sound live.”
  • 50 locals recommend
Restaurant
“Osteria Francescana is a restaurant owned and run by chef Massimo Bottura in Modena, Italy. In 2016 and 2018, it was rated as the world's best restaurant in the World's 50 Best Restaurants. It was the first Italian restaurant to earn the award. It was also second best in 2015 and third best in 2013 and 2014.”
  • 28 locals recommend
Wine Bar
“Camera a Sud is a quite place where you can have wine or good cocktails and if you wanna eat they have food as well :)”
  • 31 locals recommend
Italian Restaurant
“A place where every dish has a story. To go here,better to Book especially in the weekend! ”
  • 33 locals recommend
Jazz Club
“Bologna has always been at the forefront of Italy’s music scene – whether it be jazz, indie rock or classic canzone – and with such a big student population music lovers are spoilt for choice for reasonably priced live concerts.”
  • 28 locals recommend
Restaurant
“Out of the way and heaving with locals, Trattoria Da Vito is one of the most iconic trattorias in town. The simple and rustic interior and solid, well prepared meals are the two main features of this Bologna style place. Don't mind about the apparently rude staff. It's just a fun attitude!”
  • 37 locals recommend
Restaurant
“Amazing, traditional Modenese cuisine at a reasonable price. Open for lunches during the week, and both lunch and dinner on weekends. ”
  • 16 locals recommend

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