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Romantic Guide to Bologna

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Have you ever asked yourself why the Americans call the Due Torri—symbol of Bologna—the kissing towers? This name comes from a romantic legend telling the story of an impossible love. It is said that, when asked for his daughter's hand in marriage, a nobleman quoted an steep price to the young suitor: the tallest tower in the city. This seemed an impossible feat for the suitoa, l'Asinelli, a poor man who transported gravel and sand on the back of his donkey. But one day, while digging sand, l'Asinelli found a bag of golden coins—a discovery that enabled him to build Torre degli Asinelli and to marry the noble girl of his dreams! Let this romantic story accompany you and your loved one during your time in this enchanting city.

Good for
  • Couples
  • History Buff
  • Foodie
  • Luxury Traveller
  • Like a Local

9 Places

3 City Tips

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Map

9 Places

Colazione da Bianca

Restaurants

Palazzo Re Enzo

Architectural Buildings, Historic Sites

Ristorante Casa Monica

Restaurants

Teatro Comunale di Bologna

Operas

Villaggio della Salute Piu

Hotels

Hotel Touring

Hotels

Antica Osteria Romagnola

Restaurants

Basilica - Santuario di Santo Stefano

Sacred & Religious Sites, Churches & Cathedrals

Cantina Bentivoglio

Restaurants

Elisa Z's City Tips

  • Although you can find everything you need within walking distance, it is helpful to know that Bologna also has a very efficient bus service, which operates 24 hours a day.
  • Bologna is generally a safe city. However, I would recommend keeping your belongings in sight at all times, particularly when you eat outside or are in crowded places.
  • The service charge is already included in the bill, so tipping is not common in Italy.
  • Save
    Colazione da Bianca
    Restaurants (Italian, Cafe)
    See more photos
    Elisa Z Says:

    Start the day at this cute cafe in Via Santo Stefano, just a few steps away from the seven churches. Colazione da Bianca serves excellent coffee, French croissants and muffins. Alternatively, come back at 5pm for the afternoon tea—complete with delicious homemade cakes, biscuits and gingerbread!

    Good for
    • Foodie
    • Couples
    • Trendsetter
    • Like a Local
    Tips
    • On Friday and Saturday, don't miss the aperitivo with prestigious wines and food buffet.
    Plan to stay:/
    1-2 hours
    From the community
    Ranked #1,544 of 1,598 restaurants in Bologna
    • They could do better than this 12/03/2018
    • Inexplicably slow service 12/02/2018
    • Colazione da Bianca
    Address:
    Via Santo Stefano 1
    40125 Bologna
    Italy
    Phone:
    +39 051 588 4425
    Hours:
    Sun
    08:30 - 21:00
    Mon
    08:00 - 21:00
    Wed - Thu
    08:00 - 21:00
    Fri
    08:00 - 21:30
    Sat
    08:30 - 21:30
    Other:
  • Save
    Palazzo Re Enzo
    Architectural Buildings, Historic Sites
    See more photos
    Elisa Z Says:

    Under the gallery that crosses the Palazzo del Podestà, directly below the Torre dell'Arengo, lies the most unusual spot in Bologna. Il Magico Voltone del Palazzo Re Enzo provides a fun and fascinating way to 'whisper sweet nothings'—you and your beloved can stand in opposite corners and hear each other perfectly thanks to this fascinating sound transmission system, which has been used for centuries!

    Good for
    • History Buff
    • Couples
    • Thrifty Traveller
    • Hidden Gems
    • Nature Lover
    Tips
    • Piazza Maggiore is the ideal setting for a romantic evening stroll, hand in hand.
    Plan to stay:/
    Less than 1 hour
    From the community
    Ranked #38 of 365 things to do in Bologna
    Certificate of Excellence 2014
    • Stunning medieval place 23/05/2017
    • Beautiful. 26/02/2017
    • Palazzo Re Enzo
    Address:
    Piazza Maggiore 1
    40124 Bologna
    Italy
    Other:
  • Save
    Ristorante Casa Monica
    Restaurants (Italian, Mediterranean)
    See more photos
    Elisa Z Says:

    Fresh and genuine ingredients, simple yet unforgettable food and an interesting menu that changes along with the earth's rhythm... All of this and more you can expect at the cosy Ristorante Casa Monica. The premises used to be an old carpenter's shop, and its red bricks and retro charm make this place an excellent choice for any romantic occasion.

    Good for
    • Foodie
    • Couples
    • Thrifty Traveller
    • Nightlife Seeker
    • Like a Local
    Tips
    • The restaurant is close to Via del Pratello, a lively working-class district that is popular for its night life and old taverns.
    • After dinner, take a walk to Piazza San Francesco and enjoy a glass of wine in the iconic bar, De' Marchi.
    Plan to stay:/
    1-2 hours
    From the community
    Ranked #280 of 1,598 restaurants in Bologna
    • Not at all what we expected 09/04/2018
    • Great food 11/10/2017
    • Ristorante Casa Monica
    Address:
    Via San Rocco 16
    40122 Bologna
    Italy
    Phone:
    +39 051 522522
    Price range:
    US$ 25 - US$ 45
    Hours:
    Sun - Sat
    20:00 - 23:30
    Other:
  • Save
    Teatro Comunale di Bologna
    Operas
    See more photos
    Elisa Z Says:

    Watching a performance at one of the most important Opera Houses in Italy is a special and moving experience. Teatro Comunale di Bologna was the first Italian theater to perform Wagner's works, and today its interesting and varied program includes opera, ballet and symphonic music.

    Good for
    • Must See
    • History Buff
    • Couples
    • Art and Architecture Lover
    • Like a Local
    Tips
    • Tickets are sold online and at the ticket office, which is open Tuesday-Friday, 12-6.00pm; and Saturday, 10.30am-4.00pm.
    • The gallery seats are cheaper, but only go on sale 2 hours before the show on weekdays and 30 mins before the show on Sundays and bank holidays.
    • Pay a visit to nearby bar Le Stanze, which is located in an ex chapel belonging to the Bentivoglio family—lords of Bologna during the Renaissance.
    Plan to stay:/
    2-3 hours
    From the community
    Ranked #69 of 365 things to do in Bologna
    Certificate of Excellence 2014
    • Beautiful 08/10/2017
    • Beautiful 27/05/2017
    • Teatro Comunale di Bologna
    Address:
    Largo Respighi 1
    40126 Bologna
    Italy
    Phone:
    +39 051 529958
    Other:
  • Save
    Villaggio della Salute Piu
    Hotels
    See more photos
    Elisa Z Says:

    Located in the hills just outside Bologna, the Acquapark della Salute Più has a spa, a wellness center, a water park and a restaurant serving traditional and biological food—everything you need to enjoy the breathtaking landscape that surrounds it in style.

    Good for
    • Peace and Quiet Seeker
    • Couples
    • Nature Lover
    Tips
    • Rent a car to get there—it is not very far from Bologna, but public transport connections aren't good.
    • Inside the park, there is nudist zone called Oasi di Zello.
    Plan to stay:/
    More than 3 hours
    From the community
    Ranked #2 of 2 Hotels in Monterenzio
    • Nice surprise 09/02/2018
    • What can I say?! Fantastic! 30/10/2016
    • Villaggio della Salute Piu
    Address:
    Via Tassinara 6
    40050, Monterenzio
    Italy
  • Save
    Hotel Touring
    Hotels
    See more photos
    Elisa Z Says:

    For a romantic sunset, the terrace at Hotel Touring is hard to beat. Watch the sun going down over Bologna's rooftops while plunged cosily in a Jacuzzi, then enjoy a candlelit dinner to round off a truly unforgettable night.

    Good for
    • Foodie
    • Peace and Quiet Seeker
    • Couples
    • Luxury Traveller
    Tips
    • The terrace is open to the public from 6.30pm-10.00pm.
    Plan to stay:/
    More than 3 hours
    From the community
    Ranked #7 of 102 Hotels in Bologna
    Certificate of Excellence 2014
    • Great views from the rooftop bar 24/04/2018
    • Excellent choice 16/04/2018
    • Hotel Touring
    Address:
    Via De' Mattuiani 1/2
    Piazza Tribunale
    40124 Bologna
    Italy
    Phone:
    011 39 051 042 1045
    Other:
  • Save
    Antica Osteria Romagnola
    Restaurants (Italian, Mediterranean)
    See more photos
    Elisa Z Says:

    For a special treat, don't miss the old-fashioned Antica Osteria Romagnola. It offers a varied and appealing menu, which changes according to the seasonal products available, and the delicious Italian dishes are presented with careful attention to every last detail.

    Good for
    • Foodie
    • Couples
    • Luxury Traveller
    • Hidden Gems
    Tips
    • To end your night with something sweet, head to Sorbetteria Castiglione—just a few steps away from the restaurant—for ice cream!
    • Feel like watching a romantic art-house film? The Rialto Studio cinema is located on the same street.
    Plan to stay:/
    1-2 hours
    From the community
    Ranked #285 of 1,598 restaurants in Bologna
    Certificate of Excellence 2014
    • Delicious food 21/04/2018
    • Good but nothing special 11/02/2018
    • Antica Osteria Romagnola
    Address:
    Via Rialto 13
    Bologna
    40124 Bologna
    Italy
    Phone:
    +39 051 263699
    Price range:
    US$ 24 - US$ 34
    Hours:
    Tue - Sun
    19:30 - 23:00
    Wed - Sun
    12:30 - 14:30
    Other:
  • Save
    Basilica - Santuario di Santo Stefano
    Sacred & Religious Sites, Churches & Cathedrals
    See more photos
    Elisa Z Says:

    This square is probably the most magical place to be in Bologna at night, when it is not very busy and you can admire its beauty in peace. I would recommend starting your romantic stroll at the Due Torri and walking down Via Santo Stefano in order to enjoy the view of Casa Pasi and Torre Alberici, until you end up at Basilica di Santo Stefano and its terrific triangular square, artfully lit at night.

    Good for
    • Peace and Quiet Seeker
    • Must See
    • History Buff
    • Couples
    • Art and Architecture Lover
    Tips
    • Try the excellent Fritto Misto alla Bolognose—variety of fried vegetables and meat—at Ristorante Cesarina on the side of the square.
    • Enjoy this fantastic view with an aperitivo at one of the alfresco cafe bars under the square portico.
    Plan to stay:/
    1-2 hours
    From the community
    Ranked #3 of 365 things to do in Bologna
    Certificate of Excellence 2014
    • Wow. Great place! 15/04/2018
    • TripAdvisor overrates 13/04/2018
    • Basilica - Santuario di Santo Stefano
    Address:
    Via Santo Stefano 24
    Piazza S.Stefano - Bologna
    40125 Bologna
    Italy
    Phone:
    +39 051 223256
    Other:
  • Save
    Cantina Bentivoglio
    Restaurants (Italian, Mediterranean, Wine Bar)
    See more photos
    Elisa Z Says:

    A must-see for music lovers, this historic wine bar has hosted the best jazz concerts in town for the last 25 years. To listen to some good live jazz while sipping a glass of wine with your partner, there is simply nowhere better!

    Good for
    • Foodie
    • Couples
    • Nightlife Seeker
    • Like a Local
    Tips
    • Book your table in advance to avoid disappointment—it is always very busy.
    • In summer, the stage moves outside—together with the tables—and completely occupies Via Mascarella.
    Plan to stay:/
    2-3 hours
    From the community
    Ranked #247 of 1,598 restaurants in Bologna
    • Great Place to Eat 26/04/2018
    • Something 04/03/2018
    • Cantina Bentivoglio
    Address:
    Via Mascarella 4/B
    40126 Bologna
    Italy
    Price range:
    US$ 22 - US$ 73
    Hours:
    Sun - Sat
    20:00 - 02:00
    Other:
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