DSC_0279

24 Hours in Bologna

The beautiful city of Bologna, Italy in 24 hours

Bologna is the capital of the Emilia-Romagna region in Northern Italy. In addition to having some of the best food in the country, it also holds the oldest university in Europe (along with Salamanca, where I studied abroad), has two impressive towers overlooking the city and has hidden canals plus so much more! There is so much you could experience within 24 hours in Bologna.

Three friends enjoying Bologna, Italy

In June 2018, my family took a trip to Switzerland and Northern Italy through Crawford Concierge. Bologna was the last stop on our trip and during the time we were there I was so excited to meet up with my two good friends Ian and Nick. Ian is a good college friend of mine and I met Nick last year when I visited Ian in Sicily.

Discover everything you can do in Bologna in 24 hours.

**Please note that this blog post uses affiliate links meaning that if you make a purchase via my affiliate link, I receive a small commission at no additional cost to you. I only promote and talk about products and services that I have used and like.


Pin the Below Image to Keep Handy

24 Hours in Bologna, Italy

Transportation to and Around Bologna:

Beautiful views of Bologna

During our time in Italy, we took the train via Rail Europe to each of the different cities we visited. In addition to rail travel, you could also rent a car in Italy or fly to your prospective destinations.

Things to do in Bologna:

Climb the Torre Asinelli or Torre Prendiparte:

The Torre Asinelli of Bologna, Italy

Torre Asinelli – Unfortunately, we did not make our way to the famous city of Pisa during our time in Northern Italy, so the Asinelli Tower in Bologna made up for that! In fact, the Asinelli Tower is much taller than the Leaning Tower of Pisa and offers spectacular views of Bologna. If you are looking to climb up this tower, it is recommended that you book your tickets in advance (especially if you’re only there for the day) because it is quite the popular attraction in the city and there are only a limited number of people allowed in the tower at once.

Exploring the Torre Prendiparte with 24 hours in Bologna Italy

Torre Prendiparte – What was once a prison and defense tower is now one of the most unique landmarks in Italy. The 12th century Torre Prendiparte offers amazing views of Bologna from its terrace and also is a unique bed and breakfast for those visiting! (Isn’t that so cool?)

Visit Bologna’s Cathedral:

The beautiful Bologna cathedral. What you must see within 24 hours in Bologna

The Cattedrale Metropolitana di San Pietro is the primary cathedral of Bologna. Dating back to the late 16th century, this beautiful cathedral features stunning Baroque architecture and Romanesque details. It is definitely a must-see when visiting Bologna. Click here to discover more churches to visit in Bologna.

Discover the Hidden Canals:

Discovering the hidden canals with 24 hours in Bologna

Guess what? Venice is not the only place to see canals in Italy! If you wander throughout the city of Bologna, you might find some of the most quiet and beautiful canals. Many of these canals date back to the Middle Ages, but unlike Venice, most of them are closed off to the public.

Savor some of the Best Dishes in the Country:

A group of people enjoying a Bolognese lunch together with 24 hours in Bologna

Since our 24 hours in Bologna was the last full day we had in Italy, we definitely weren’t going to hold back when it came to eating! Yes, that is correct, Bologna is known for its food and the word diet was the last thing on our minds. Here are two amazing restaurants we ate at during our time in this magical city:

Ristorante Trattoria Oberdan da Mario: Recommended from a Bolognese local was the amazing restaurant of Trattoria Oberdan da Marino! As I have mentioned in my previous blog posts on Italy, asking a local resident for food recommendations is the best way to find a great dining spot.

A pasta dish from Bologna, Italy

This wonderful trattoria offers typical Bolognese dishes such as prosciutto di Parma, pastas with Bolognese sauce, tortellini, lasagna and even vegetarian dishes! We all enjoyed a delicious platter of prosciutto with melon as well as tomato, mozzarella and basil salad with olive oil as an appetizer. For lunch, I savored tagliatelle pasta with porcini mushrooms in a cream sauce. It was delicious to say the least!

Pappardelle pasta dish from Bologna

Trattoria Del Rosso: At night, we went to a great restaurant recommended by both Ian and Nick called Trattoria Del Rosso. The mission behind Trattoria Del Rosso is to provide local meals to visitors that are typically served in a Bolognese household. Their dishes range from house-made pastas, lasagna, tortellini and amazing desserts such as tiramisu. For dinner that night, I enjoyed pappardelle pasta with fresh pesto, tomatoes and pine nuts. It was, yet again, to die for!

Discover more amazing restaurants in Bologna with TripAdvisor.

Shop Your Heart Out:

A cone of gelato in Bologna

Following behind Milan, Florence and Rome in the Italian shopping world is Bologna. On a nice day, like the day we were in the city, head down the glam streets of Via dell’Indipendenza, Via Ugo Bassi, Via Rizzoli and Via D’Azeglio! You can find any store from big Italian name brands to boutiques and antique shops to bookstores in this city. To cool off while you shop, stop in one of Bologna’s wonderful gelato shops! Click here for a list of the best gelato spots in the city.

Grab an Apertivo in the Piazza Maggiore:

Enjoying the Piazza Maggiore with 24 hours in Bologna

The main square in Bologna is one of a kind. Between the gorgeous architecture, historic cathedral, the amazing Neptune Fountain (pictured below) and everything else, there is so much to love about the Piazza Maggiore! In the middle of the afternoon, Nick, Ian and I stopped at a bar that was situated in the Piazza Maggiore and enjoyed a refreshing aperol spritz! It was the perfect way to relax, enjoy the atmosphere and people watch. In addition, the Piazza Maggiore will sometimes hold concerts as well. The day before we arrived, a famous Italian music artist performed there!

Feel Like Royalty:

The ceiling of Hotel Corona d'Oro in Bologna

Once again, Crawford Concierge set us up with another beautiful hotel called Hotel Corona d’Oro. This 4.5-star hotel is located in the heart of Bologna and offers 40 rooms that are all uniquely decorated in a classic Italian style, characterized by an elegant and enchanting atmosphere.

My brothers and I stayed in the Double Room Deluxe and it was seriously magical! Our ceilings were ornately painted; we had a balcony with amazing views of the two towers in the city and classical music played throughout the room (even in the bathroom, which was perfect when you took a shower)! Even though we stayed in amazing hotels in every city we visited during our time in Italy, the Hotel Corona d’Oro was definitely my favorite! It made it feel like I was staying in a royal palace. In addition, the hotel’s breakfast was also amazing!

Click here to discover more hotels in Bologna. There are also a selection of hostels and Airbnb options as well.

*A BONUS: Rent a Ferrari or Lamborghini for the day!

If you are looking for the chance to drive your dream car, then right outside of Bologna is where you can feel like a superstar! Push Start Maranello in Maranello, Italy allows auto enthusiasts to rent high-end Italian cars from Ferrari to Lamborghini for the day and test drive them through the nearby mountain areas and towns. My friend Ian had the opportunity to experience a day at Push Start Maranello and had the time of his life!

Click here to discover everything else you could see or do in and around Bologna.


Admiring the beautiful architecture with 24 hours in Bologna

Overall, I had an amazing time within my 24 hours in Bologna and definitely think it is a city that cannot be missed when traveling through Northern Italy. If you have any questions regarding my trip to Italy, please feel free to also send me an email at [email protected].

Make sure to pin this post if you find it useful!

24 hours in Bologna

Basic Facts of Italy:

Currency: Euro, Capital: Rome, Time Zone: Central European Time

Click here to join my private blog sharing Facebook group.

*Anything could happen during your travels. Always make sure you are insured in case there are unforeseen circumstances such as lost luggage/theft, natural disasters, personal liabilities and more. Click here to get insured for your next trip.

Shop my Bologna look:

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19 Comments

  1. Maria on April 4, 2020 at 1:06 pm

    I had veneer considered visiting Bologna but it seems like a lovely city! And I had no idea that there were canals too, that’s so cool!

    • Maria on April 4, 2020 at 1:07 pm

      *never

    • Taylor Deer on April 4, 2020 at 7:28 pm

      It’s definitely an underrated city in Italy! I highly recommend going, even if it is for a day trip. 🙂

  2. Lauriane on June 20, 2020 at 1:04 pm

    Hi Taylor :). Thank you for the post. We went in Bologna 1 year ago – so it is great memory. I love the Italian food – it is one of the best attraction in Bologna. We also ate so tasty ice-creams. I agree with your comment – grabbing an aperitivo on the Maggiore place is a must :).

    • Taylor Deer on June 21, 2020 at 9:34 am

      Thank you Lauriane and yes, it is such a beautiful city with great food! I recommend it for everyone traveling in Italy. 🙂

  3. Suvarna Arora on June 20, 2020 at 1:09 pm

    Taylor, this is amazing and I planned to visit Italy in April but I am hoping next year now. I will be sure to include Bologna in my itinerary.

    • Taylor Deer on June 21, 2020 at 9:35 am

      Thank you Suvarna and you would love Bologna. 🙂

  4. Ana @ JauntingTrips on June 20, 2020 at 3:00 pm

    I’ve been twice to Bologna, but always on the run – like one night. And it’s such a cool city. Food is delicious and they also have a jazz festival in autumn. It is one of my favorite Italian cities and I would gladly return there anytime!

    • Taylor Deer on June 21, 2020 at 9:38 am

      That is awesome Ana and the jazz festival sounds amazing! 🙂

  5. Arielle Kurtze on June 21, 2020 at 2:54 am

    Gorgeous photos! I’ve been to several areas in Italy but never Bologna. Definitely on my list of places to visit! Thanks for sharing.

    • Taylor Deer on June 21, 2020 at 9:42 am

      Thank you Arielle and you would love Bologna so much. 🙂 The food is incredible.

  6. Ildiko on June 21, 2020 at 12:23 pm

    I’ve been to Italy many times, but never spent real time in Bologna …. just a quick drive through. I would love to go back and explore some of your recommendations on a future trip. The food in Italy is so delicious!!

    • Taylor Deer on June 21, 2020 at 10:48 pm

      Ah yes, it’s such a great city and the food is amazing! I know you will love Bologna. 🙂

  7. Tina on June 21, 2020 at 2:56 pm

    Who knew you could do so much in 24hrs! Those pasta dishes and ice cream look delicious!!

    • Taylor Deer on June 21, 2020 at 10:49 pm

      Right?! Bologna is such a great city! 🙂

  8. Patti on June 22, 2020 at 12:17 pm

    Wow, I can’t believe you did so much in just one day! I love everything about Italy so much!

    • Taylor Deer on June 22, 2020 at 3:31 pm

      Yes, there are so many great things to do in Bologna!:)

  9. Portia Jones on June 24, 2020 at 10:36 am

    OMG I would love to spend time in Bologna. I flew into there to visit other parts of the region but I didn’t actually get to spend any time there. I am pinning this for my next trip over. xx

    • Taylor Deer on June 24, 2020 at 5:00 pm

      It’s such a wonderful city Portia! You would love it next time you’re in that area of Italy. 🙂

Leave a Comment





DSC_0279

24 Hours in Bologna

The beautiful city of Bologna, Italy in 24 hours

Bologna is the capital of the Emilia-Romagna region in Northern Italy. In addition to having some of the best food in the country, it also holds the oldest university in Europe (along with Salamanca, where I studied abroad), has two impressive towers overlooking the city and has hidden canals plus so much more! There is so much you could experience within 24 hours in Bologna.

Three friends enjoying Bologna, Italy

In June 2018, my family took a trip to Switzerland and Northern Italy through Crawford Concierge. Bologna was the last stop on our trip and during the time we were there I was so excited to meet up with my two good friends Ian and Nick. Ian is a good college friend of mine and I met Nick last year when I visited Ian in Sicily.

Discover everything you can do in Bologna in 24 hours.

**Please note that this blog post uses affiliate links meaning that if you make a purchase via my affiliate link, I receive a small commission at no additional cost to you. I only promote and talk about products and services that I have used and like.


Pin the Below Image to Keep Handy

24 Hours in Bologna, Italy

Transportation to and Around Bologna:

Beautiful views of Bologna

During our time in Italy, we took the train via Rail Europe to each of the different cities we visited. In addition to rail travel, you could also rent a car in Italy or fly to your prospective destinations.

Things to do in Bologna:

Climb the Torre Asinelli or Torre Prendiparte:

The Torre Asinelli of Bologna, Italy

Torre Asinelli – Unfortunately, we did not make our way to the famous city of Pisa during our time in Northern Italy, so the Asinelli Tower in Bologna made up for that! In fact, the Asinelli Tower is much taller than the Leaning Tower of Pisa and offers spectacular views of Bologna. If you are looking to climb up this tower, it is recommended that you book your tickets in advance (especially if you’re only there for the day) because it is quite the popular attraction in the city and there are only a limited number of people allowed in the tower at once.

Exploring the Torre Prendiparte with 24 hours in Bologna Italy

Torre Prendiparte – What was once a prison and defense tower is now one of the most unique landmarks in Italy. The 12th century Torre Prendiparte offers amazing views of Bologna from its terrace and also is a unique bed and breakfast for those visiting! (Isn’t that so cool?)

Visit Bologna’s Cathedral:

The beautiful Bologna cathedral. What you must see within 24 hours in Bologna

The Cattedrale Metropolitana di San Pietro is the primary cathedral of Bologna. Dating back to the late 16th century, this beautiful cathedral features stunning Baroque architecture and Romanesque details. It is definitely a must-see when visiting Bologna. Click here to discover more churches to visit in Bologna.

Discover the Hidden Canals:

Discovering the hidden canals with 24 hours in Bologna

Guess what? Venice is not the only place to see canals in Italy! If you wander throughout the city of Bologna, you might find some of the most quiet and beautiful canals. Many of these canals date back to the Middle Ages, but unlike Venice, most of them are closed off to the public.

Savor some of the Best Dishes in the Country:

A group of people enjoying a Bolognese lunch together with 24 hours in Bologna

Since our 24 hours in Bologna was the last full day we had in Italy, we definitely weren’t going to hold back when it came to eating! Yes, that is correct, Bologna is known for its food and the word diet was the last thing on our minds. Here are two amazing restaurants we ate at during our time in this magical city:

Ristorante Trattoria Oberdan da Mario: Recommended from a Bolognese local was the amazing restaurant of Trattoria Oberdan da Marino! As I have mentioned in my previous blog posts on Italy, asking a local resident for food recommendations is the best way to find a great dining spot.

A pasta dish from Bologna, Italy

This wonderful trattoria offers typical Bolognese dishes such as prosciutto di Parma, pastas with Bolognese sauce, tortellini, lasagna and even vegetarian dishes! We all enjoyed a delicious platter of prosciutto with melon as well as tomato, mozzarella and basil salad with olive oil as an appetizer. For lunch, I savored tagliatelle pasta with porcini mushrooms in a cream sauce. It was delicious to say the least!

Pappardelle pasta dish from Bologna

Trattoria Del Rosso: At night, we went to a great restaurant recommended by both Ian and Nick called Trattoria Del Rosso. The mission behind Trattoria Del Rosso is to provide local meals to visitors that are typically served in a Bolognese household. Their dishes range from house-made pastas, lasagna, tortellini and amazing desserts such as tiramisu. For dinner that night, I enjoyed pappardelle pasta with fresh pesto, tomatoes and pine nuts. It was, yet again, to die for!

Discover more amazing restaurants in Bologna with TripAdvisor.

Shop Your Heart Out:

A cone of gelato in Bologna

Following behind Milan, Florence and Rome in the Italian shopping world is Bologna. On a nice day, like the day we were in the city, head down the glam streets of Via dell’Indipendenza, Via Ugo Bassi, Via Rizzoli and Via D’Azeglio! You can find any store from big Italian name brands to boutiques and antique shops to bookstores in this city. To cool off while you shop, stop in one of Bologna’s wonderful gelato shops! Click here for a list of the best gelato spots in the city.

Grab an Apertivo in the Piazza Maggiore:

Enjoying the Piazza Maggiore with 24 hours in Bologna

The main square in Bologna is one of a kind. Between the gorgeous architecture, historic cathedral, the amazing Neptune Fountain (pictured below) and everything else, there is so much to love about the Piazza Maggiore! In the middle of the afternoon, Nick, Ian and I stopped at a bar that was situated in the Piazza Maggiore and enjoyed a refreshing aperol spritz! It was the perfect way to relax, enjoy the atmosphere and people watch. In addition, the Piazza Maggiore will sometimes hold concerts as well. The day before we arrived, a famous Italian music artist performed there!

Feel Like Royalty:

The ceiling of Hotel Corona d'Oro in Bologna

Once again, Crawford Concierge set us up with another beautiful hotel called Hotel Corona d’Oro. This 4.5-star hotel is located in the heart of Bologna and offers 40 rooms that are all uniquely decorated in a classic Italian style, characterized by an elegant and enchanting atmosphere.

My brothers and I stayed in the Double Room Deluxe and it was seriously magical! Our ceilings were ornately painted; we had a balcony with amazing views of the two towers in the city and classical music played throughout the room (even in the bathroom, which was perfect when you took a shower)! Even though we stayed in amazing hotels in every city we visited during our time in Italy, the Hotel Corona d’Oro was definitely my favorite! It made it feel like I was staying in a royal palace. In addition, the hotel’s breakfast was also amazing!

Click here to discover more hotels in Bologna. There are also a selection of hostels and Airbnb options as well.

*A BONUS: Rent a Ferrari or Lamborghini for the day!

If you are looking for the chance to drive your dream car, then right outside of Bologna is where you can feel like a superstar! Push Start Maranello in Maranello, Italy allows auto enthusiasts to rent high-end Italian cars from Ferrari to Lamborghini for the day and test drive them through the nearby mountain areas and towns. My friend Ian had the opportunity to experience a day at Push Start Maranello and had the time of his life!

Click here to discover everything else you could see or do in and around Bologna.


Admiring the beautiful architecture with 24 hours in Bologna

Overall, I had an amazing time within my 24 hours in Bologna and definitely think it is a city that cannot be missed when traveling through Northern Italy. If you have any questions regarding my trip to Italy, please feel free to also send me an email at [email protected].

Make sure to pin this post if you find it useful!

24 hours in Bologna

Basic Facts of Italy:

Currency: Euro, Capital: Rome, Time Zone: Central European Time

Click here to join my private blog sharing Facebook group.

*Anything could happen during your travels. Always make sure you are insured in case there are unforeseen circumstances such as lost luggage/theft, natural disasters, personal liabilities and more. Click here to get insured for your next trip.

Shop my Bologna look:

19 Comments

  1. Maria on April 4, 2020 at 1:06 pm

    I had veneer considered visiting Bologna but it seems like a lovely city! And I had no idea that there were canals too, that’s so cool!

    • Maria on April 4, 2020 at 1:07 pm

      *never

    • Taylor Deer on April 4, 2020 at 7:28 pm

      It’s definitely an underrated city in Italy! I highly recommend going, even if it is for a day trip. 🙂

  2. Lauriane on June 20, 2020 at 1:04 pm

    Hi Taylor :). Thank you for the post. We went in Bologna 1 year ago – so it is great memory. I love the Italian food – it is one of the best attraction in Bologna. We also ate so tasty ice-creams. I agree with your comment – grabbing an aperitivo on the Maggiore place is a must :).

    • Taylor Deer on June 21, 2020 at 9:34 am

      Thank you Lauriane and yes, it is such a beautiful city with great food! I recommend it for everyone traveling in Italy. 🙂

  3. Suvarna Arora on June 20, 2020 at 1:09 pm

    Taylor, this is amazing and I planned to visit Italy in April but I am hoping next year now. I will be sure to include Bologna in my itinerary.

    • Taylor Deer on June 21, 2020 at 9:35 am

      Thank you Suvarna and you would love Bologna. 🙂

  4. Ana @ JauntingTrips on June 20, 2020 at 3:00 pm

    I’ve been twice to Bologna, but always on the run – like one night. And it’s such a cool city. Food is delicious and they also have a jazz festival in autumn. It is one of my favorite Italian cities and I would gladly return there anytime!

    • Taylor Deer on June 21, 2020 at 9:38 am

      That is awesome Ana and the jazz festival sounds amazing! 🙂

  5. Arielle Kurtze on June 21, 2020 at 2:54 am

    Gorgeous photos! I’ve been to several areas in Italy but never Bologna. Definitely on my list of places to visit! Thanks for sharing.

    • Taylor Deer on June 21, 2020 at 9:42 am

      Thank you Arielle and you would love Bologna so much. 🙂 The food is incredible.

  6. Ildiko on June 21, 2020 at 12:23 pm

    I’ve been to Italy many times, but never spent real time in Bologna …. just a quick drive through. I would love to go back and explore some of your recommendations on a future trip. The food in Italy is so delicious!!

    • Taylor Deer on June 21, 2020 at 10:48 pm

      Ah yes, it’s such a great city and the food is amazing! I know you will love Bologna. 🙂

  7. Tina on June 21, 2020 at 2:56 pm

    Who knew you could do so much in 24hrs! Those pasta dishes and ice cream look delicious!!

    • Taylor Deer on June 21, 2020 at 10:49 pm

      Right?! Bologna is such a great city! 🙂

  8. Patti on June 22, 2020 at 12:17 pm

    Wow, I can’t believe you did so much in just one day! I love everything about Italy so much!

    • Taylor Deer on June 22, 2020 at 3:31 pm

      Yes, there are so many great things to do in Bologna!:)

  9. Portia Jones on June 24, 2020 at 10:36 am

    OMG I would love to spend time in Bologna. I flew into there to visit other parts of the region but I didn’t actually get to spend any time there. I am pinning this for my next trip over. xx

    • Taylor Deer on June 24, 2020 at 5:00 pm

      It’s such a wonderful city Portia! You would love it next time you’re in that area of Italy. 🙂

Leave a Comment





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