Unique to Bologna, the streets of the city are almost entirely lined with arcaded porticoes. Nearly every palace or edifice in Bologna contains a portico on its lower level, which when added together, extend to a total length of 38 kms! Although the porticoes are considered the private property of the buildings under which they are located, they are open to public pedestrians and serve as the pavements of the city. The tradition began in mediaeval times as a way to enlarge the palaces without encroaching upon the street, but became part of the identity and character of the city. In previous centuries, merchants used to set up stalls under these porticoes to sell their merchandise during the day and packed up at night. Although nearly all of the porticoes are arcaded, they vary in size and style, but all add to the charm and beauty of Bologna. Attached are examples of the arcaded porticoes of Bologna.
Terzi, mescita e commercio caffè e te pregiati
Via Oberdan 10
h. 8.00 - 18-00
My prefered place to take a coffe or a tea is this, in venetian stucchi style, with gentle weiters that explain you all the type of coffe.
It's located in the central Via Oberdan, away from the main street, there is this parfumed and secial place.......
The caffetteria Terzi sell and prepare not the usual day coffe or tea, the owner select the best cru of coffe, from all over the world and he can help you in the choose.
There are 50 variety of tea, and tisane too that are made with a hot woter from a original Samovar.
There are special recipts like nuts, pistacchio, pepeper coffe or viennoise cappuccino and the superb Cremino:.3 layers of coffee and cream served in a parfait glass....it's a little bit expensive than the other place, but it's not Starbuck!
The Asinelli tower is the tallest between the two famous towers of Bologna. You can climb it and it costs 3 €, the panorama is really awsome and it's worth doing.... but... students who study at Bologna University do not climb the Asinelli Tower until they get their degree. "Asino" in Italian means "donkey" in English, "asino" stands also for people who are not clever and who don't get good marks at school. So if you climb the Asinelli Tower it brings you bad luck and you become an "asino"!! ... I am still a law student at Bologna Alma Mater University, I would love to climb the Asinelli Tower but I won't until I finish my studies!
[Well, actually, I DID climb the tower once... I was 12 on my school trip! But I hope it doesn't matter.... :) ]
Update, Feb. 2007: I finally got my law degree!!! Yeah... :) But I haven't climbed the tower yet... maybe during my next visit to Bologna... When I do it, I'll post the pics!!! ....
Bologna has the oldest University in the world, founded in 1088. It's called the "Alma Mater Studiorum" because it was the very first one to be born. The first faculty was law, and it was founded by a monk, called Irnerio, who started teaching the old Roman law to students who joined his classes. University was not an organization yet, there were just groups of clever students following their teacher. Of course they needed to know ancient latin.
University became an organization much later, the first "state" University in Italy was in Naples and it was founded by Federico II (it is called "Università Federico II" even now).
Bologna University is still one of the biggest in Italy.
On our first visit to Bologna back in Sep 2002 we spent quite a bit of time hanging out in Piazza Maggiore, just watching the world go by with a coffee or gelato. However, each time we sat back to relax for a while we were rudely interrupted by some loud music playing just around the corner in Piazza Nettuno.
On investigation, the man responsible for the racket was a leather clad, motorcycle riding, long haired muscle man! Mr 'Guitar Man', as we christened him, was playing a tiny electric guitar very loud, over the top of piped music. What class!!
He seemed to be playing several times a day, and his twangs could be heard from all around. I will never forget his style - hair blowing in the breeze while he played his heart out to a dodgy version of Tina Turners "We don't need another Hero".....and clearly we don't, cause we have the Guitar Man, and he was so cool he could even give the Hoff a run for his money ; )
In the medieval times there were about 180 towers in Bologna, most of them built by the local noble families. Actually, it was a kind of competition among themselves in order to show the importance and the riches of particular family. Not much of the towers survived, besides most famous Asinelli and Garisenda, there are still remained the towers Prendiparte, Azzoguidi, Torresotto and few others of minor importance.
One of my first impression was, Bologna is place with lots of motorbikes, bikes and beautiful girls (not neccesserelly in that order). Having old medieval structure in its central parts, motorbike is certainly the best and the quickiest way to move around. The same goes for bike which is, of course, a bit slower but probably more convinient. Next time I'll take my bike with, that is for sure. And finally, sugar at the end, there are thousands of beautiful girls in Bologna and you'll meet them on any corner of the city. If I am only twenty.
Bologna has numerous civic festivals and student sponsored events. When the weather is nice, people flock to the Giardini Margherita for a pickup game of basketball or to beat on bongos in a drum circle, what ever your fancy may be. If you have access to a car or a scooter going up to the colli, the hills surrounding Bologna can be a great place for a picnic. Public holidays are also interesting affairs. At New Years they burn a giant effigy in the main piazza. Watch out for the fireworks and glass bottles being thrown out of windows. On Sundays the entire population takes to the streets for their afternoon passeggiata. Be sure to look for Beppe Lagrigilia in Piazza Maggiore.
Bologna is the premier city of arcades. Most buildings in the older part of the city have arcades, providing protected passages throughout the city, except at intersections. (It is actually possible to continue arcades across intersections, and this is sometimes done.)
I know it is a bit dark, but I like this one, with the bookstore (libreria)...At the other end is the very trendy fancy-shmancy NU BAR, the hot place for aperitivi, also here is the high end L'INDIE, a shop specializing in haute coture (don't ya love being able to use that term in the correct context) as well as eccentric and ecclectic furnishings...
Every year Bologna hosts many fairs called "Fiere" in italian. At the forefront of the fair region, with advanced services for the organizers, exhibitors, and visitors. Fairs in Bologna propose an international fair calendar for not only Italy, but for other countries abroad. From the site www.bolognafiere.it
How to get Bologna Fairs region from the airport
The Guglielmo Marconi International Airport in Bologna is linked directly to Bolognafiere by a convenient AEROBUS BLQ shuttle service.
The G. Marconi Airport in Bologna will be closed from May 3rd to July 2nd 2004 for the runway improvement and extension by 350 meters.
For more information, visit the Website:
Walking towards piazza Maggiore I passed Cattedrale San Pietro. This was about 9:30am and it was very busy with a service in progress. Many people were coming and going so I snuck in for a few moments.
I was quite surprised to find that on my return journey to the station this church had yet another service going on and it was even busier. To begin with I thought there was a special event as there were people dress up in DJ's at the door, but I'm told this is normal.
This tip is for the shopping lovers:I recommend u a store that sells the designer shoes and clothes both for women and men at a reaaly reasonbale price(of course the previous seasons designer clothes but who cares u can always finf great items at very very reasonable price).
Via Reno,7/2 40033
Casalecchio di Reno,bologna
We were expected to speak Italian. No one would really speak English to us, so we wre thrown on to our own resources. I greatly improved my passable Italian under pressure (and enjoyed doing it!. Enjoy sitting at the outdoor cafes, drinking cappuchino and people watching. What else?
It's strange how each portico in Bologna seems to have a personality of it's own. In addition the buzz, the feel you get changes with the time of day and flow and ebb of fellow pedestrians.