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Bologna travel agent tips

Staff member: Jess and Amanda // Trip date: Nov 2018

We arrived in Bologna in the afternoon, just as the sun was setting. We were relieved to see that our hotel was directly across the street from the train station as we made our way there. We checked in, dropped our bags off, and got a few recommendations from the concierge about where to go for dinner. After freshening up, we put on our walking shoes and took the main road down to the city center, where there were markets and cafes galore. We found a cute restaurant strewn with Christmas lights and grabbed a little table in the back. After ordering aperol spritz and all of the Italian foods, we spent the next few hours people watching and planning out the rest of our time in Bologna.


The next day, we woke up early and headed back downtown for our early city tour. We stopped in a coffee bar for a quick caffeine fix before our tour. It was 1 degree outside; we enjoyed the warmth of the coffee shop. We watched the locals rock up to the bar, order a coffee, drink it, and leave all within just a few minutes.


Once it was time for our tour, we met our tour guide at the tourism office just outside of Piazza Maggiore. We spent the next few hours learning about the history of the city. Fun fact – spaghetti Bolognese was not actually invented in Bologna. The traditional Bolognese was actually made with tagliatelle, and the Romans were the first people to make the Bolognese with spaghetti. Therefore, in Bologna, you won’t find any spag bol.


After wandering around the city all bundled up, we made our way back to the bus station and hopped on our bus toward Eatily. A huge warehouse about twenty minutes bus ride outside of the city, Eatily is a food-lovers paradise filled with tiny, local restaurants and markets. It’s a great place to wander and fill up on so many different types of food, buy snacks or souvenirs. We walked around a bit of it before settling on a pasta restaurant to try for lunch.


Our pasta was perfect – fresh, decadent, and filling. After lunch, we hopped back on the bus and prepared to head to our next destination: Florence!


All About Bologna


  • The train station is easy to get around and just about 20 mins walking from the city centre.
  • Travel Agent Tip: Book in a city tour! This city is full of funky history.
  • I’d recommend at least two nights and one full day to experience the highlights of Bologna. 
  • Try out Caffe Vittoria near Piazza Maggiore for an authentic Italian café experience.

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