When to fly:
To see the very best of the city, the ideal times of the year to book your flights are during the months of March, April and October. Temperatures are still pleasant at these times and the pavement cafes which adorn the city streets are alive with people watching the world go by. In May Bologna sees an array of unusual and exciting automobiles bless the city’s streets in the famous Mille Miglia. The car models that race are limited to the year of 1975 with contestants competing from Italy and beyond. August is not a recommended time to book airline tickets; the prices may be at their cheapest but the majority of the city's shops are closed for the summer holidays. The months of January and February are the best months to find cheap flights to the city. The average daily temperature is fairly cool, although the skies often remain pleasantly cloudless and blue. At the end of January, the Bologna Fair centre hosts and unmissable event for modern and contemporary art enthusiasts. Arte Fiera is a culturally rich programme of exhibits and events that is displayed throughout the city’s museums and public venues.
A delightful fusion of history, politics and traditional cuisine, the city of Bologna is arguably one of Italy's best kept secrets. Situated in the north of the country, it is only in recent years that visitors from outside of Italy have discovered just how much this vibrant city has to offer. Home to Europe's largest old town, history is an important part of the overall make-up of Bologna. The famously lopsided twin towers of Asinelli and Garisenda keep an ever-watchful eye over the glorious old town, with the magnificent 15th century Piazza Maggiore taking centre stage. Bologna has gained a number of affectionate monikers over the years; the russet-coloured buildings which typify the city giving rise to the nickname of La Rossa (the Red One). Another famous term for the city is La Grassa (the Fat One), given in honour of its rich historic legacy of producing the finest Italian cuisine. The restaurant menus here are full of tempting local specialities such as tortellini, prosciutto, mortadella and turkey with pecorino cheese. Home to Europe's oldest university, founded in the year 1088, Bologna has a large student population. As a result, the nightlife scene here is hip and vibrant, the city's many bars and clubs opening into the early hours of the morning. This concoction of historic legacy and cosmopolitan culture makes Bologna one of Italy's most absorbing and fascinating cities to visit.
Getting around Bologna
Operated by ATC, there are a number of bus routes within the city of Bologna. Tickets can be purchased either on the bus itself, from ticket machines at the bus stops or from participating newsagents and tobacconists. There are a number of taxi ranks throughout the city, although taking a taxi can prove to be expensive. Tipping taxi drivers is discretionary here as the metered fares are calculated to include service charges.
The city is served by Guglielmo Marconi Airport (BLQ). Situated just over 3 miles (5 km) away, the airport has a number of transport options to reach the city centre. Leaving from outside the main terminal building, the most popular and cost-effective transport is the Aerobus. Although slightly more expensive than the Aerobus, there are also plentiful taxis on hand.