Italy Bologna main square and King Enzo palace
Basilica di San Vitale Ravenna region of Emilia Romagna Italy
Ancient Byzantine mosaic in the basilica of San Vitale in Ravenna Italy
Antique Ferrara cathedral famous catholic landmark in Emilia Romagna Italy

Bologna & Emilia-Romagna


A cultural treasure trove away from the crowds

In Bologna, rose-red palaces glow, lavish churches shine and teetering towers strive for the skies – all looped together by miles of classical colonnades. Hidden amongst the shadows of its porticoes is a veritable treasure trove; from elaborately frescoed churches and Byzantine masterpieces to medieval and Renaissance palazzi. It’s not all about the past, though: Bologna is a vibrant town with a fine gastronomic tradition, thanks to the fertile lands of the surrounding Emilia-Romagna. Beautiful though Bologna is, there is more to this region than just the city: dotted amongst the gloriously verdant countryside are proud towns rich with Etruscan history and dynastic legacies, and the region yields wonderful produce (Parma’s cured ham, Modena’s rich vinegar and the vast truckles of aged parmesan cheese are its most famous exports). Diverse and understated, Bologna and Emilia-Romagna offer all the delights of Italy with far fewer tourists than its neighbouring provinces.


Historic hidden gems of Italy

From £785 per person

based on two sharing in a twin/double room, with a minimum of 35 passengers travelling in a specific month

Best time to go

April, May, June, September, October

Suggested Hotel

Hotel Internazionale, Bologna

  • Historic & elegant 4-star hotel
  • Located in the heart of Bologna’s old town
  • Just a short walk from the shops and restaurants
  • Classical rooms with modern amenities & soundproofing
  • Stylish cocktail bar
  • Board on a B&B basis allows you to explore the delights of Bologna’s famous gourmet scene

Not the hotel for your group? Other hotels are available, contact us.

Hotel Photos

HI 2018 Breakfast 1
HI 2018 Classic Room Double 3
HI 2018 Classic Room Twin 2
HI 2018 Deluxe Room Twin 4
HI 2018 Lobby Hall 1
HI 2018 Superior Room Double 2
HI 2018 Superior Room Double 6
HI 2018 Superior Room Twin 3



Piazza del Nettuno fountain in Bologna in Emilia Romagna in Italy

The old centre of Bologna has a Roman core, is encircled by the remains of ancient walls, and exudes charm. The wonderful tapestry of architecture speaks of the formidable and prestigious past of the once-powerful Bolognesi citizens. Discover this city’s famous Fountain of Neptune, its two tilting towers, the grand Piazza Maggiore, and its array of beautiful basilicas and palazzos, before exploring the incredible collections of art that reside here. The National Picture Gallery of Bologna and its Zambeccari Collection display significant pieces from the 14th to 19th centuries, tracing the esteemed history of the region.


Basilica di San Vitale one of the most important examples of early Christian Byzantine art in western Europe in Ravenna region of Emilia Romagna Italy

An early capital of the Western Roman Empire, this lovely but unassuming town is lifted from the everyday by its stunning collections of religious mosaics – indeed, Ravenna’s masterpieces are considered the world’s finest examples of Byzantine art. Explore these vivid artworks in the Basilica of Sant’Apollinare Nuovo; the Cathedral of San Vitale; the Neonian Baptistery, and the Basilica of Sant’Apollinare in Classe, all of which form part of this UNESCO World Heritage Site.


Antique Ferrara cathedral famous catholic landmark in Emilia Romagna Italy

Today pretty and provincial, but once dynastic and imperial, Ferrara was a stronghold of the powerful Este family for 300 years. The town’s Renaissance, UNESCO-listed centre is strewn with palaces linked by arcades, a Gothic cathedral with Romanesque features, and dominated by the 14th century Castello Estense – former seat of the Este dynasty. Ferrara was a major centre for art in its glory days, and today the work of the highly regarded Ferrara School can be enjoyed at the Pinacoteca Nazionale which is found inside the grand, 15th century Palazzo dei Diamanti.



Medieval Faenza is quietly idyllic, known best for its ceramic tradition known as faience. As well as being a centre of pottery production for hundreds of years, this pretty town has an ancient heart with an exquisite cathedral, an extraordinary clock tower and lively local markets.


Majestic Modena is dominated by the colossal Palazzo Ducale and the fine façades of its Romanesque cathedral. One of the finest Duomos in Italy, this graceful 12th century construction is a UNESCO World Heritage Site laced with Gothic features. The vast Palazzo Ducale speaks of Modena’s storied history, and indicates the wealth that the Este dynasty brought to the town. Modena is also the birthplace of Ferrari, and the Museo Ferrari is a must for motor enthusiasts.


Elegant and sophisticated, parma ham and parmesan cheese form the foodie foundations of this gourmet town. Centuries of history are represented in the grand architecture of Parma, which was ruled by the Farnese dynasty from the 16th to 18th centuries. Parma also has a strong musical tradition, and is known for its fine operas.

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