Neighboring Tuscany, Lombardy and Veneto, the region of Emilia-Romagna is unfortunately too often shunned during tourist circuits in Italy. However, it has everything to please foodies, art and culture enthusiasts, fans of beautiful cars as well as cyclists.
The culinary traditions of Emilia-Romagna are considered among the richest in the country. If you're salivating at the sight of a pasta dish, a charcuterie platter or a wheel of cheese, a stop in Bologna is a must. On the menu: mortadella, tagliatelle al ragù, tortellini in brodo and much more to accompany a glass of Lambrusco, a sparkling red or rosé wine that brings a nice freshness in the mouth. There is no doubt that the one nicknamed "La Grasse" will seduce your taste buds.
Moreover, it is impossible to evoke Italian food without thinking of its famous parmesan and its delicious prosciutto. Continue your culinary journey towards the city of Parma where the pleasures of the table promise to be there.
Several cities in northern Italy are home to arcaded galleries like Turin and Milan, but none can compete with the medieval city of Bologna. The capital of Emilia-Romagna alone has more than 60 km of arcades that line the streets of the historic center. Dating from the 12th century to the present day, these porticoes recently declared UNESCO World Heritage are very practical for protection from the blazing sun and rain. With a length of 3.5 km, the most unusual portico in Bologna has a total of 666 arcades that lead to the magnificent Madonna di San Luca sanctuary.
If you've watched the Chef's Table series on Netflix, it's a safe bet that you fell in love with the famous Italian chef Massimo Bottura. Recognized for his bubbling energy and his creative spirit, this cooking enthusiast chose Modena, his hometown, to found the Osteria Francescana. With three Michelin stars and voted best restaurant in the world in 2016 and 2018, this establishment alone is worth the trip to Italy! But beware: you have to plan 6 months in advance to hope to get a table in addition to planning a budget of 320 euros per person to treat yourself to the sumptuous 12-course menu.
Forget the cheap balsamic vinegar you buy at the grocery store. Take advantage of your visit to Modena to offer a sensational experience to your taste buds by visiting a traditional acetaia. This tasting will allow you to learn how the traditional balsamic vinegar of Modena is made from grape must. Served on parmesan, this vinegar with unique aromas offers an explosion of flavors in the mouth.
Ferrari, Lamborghini, Maserati, Ducati... all names that sound sweet to your ears? You will then be happy to know that all these prestigious car manufacturers are based in the Emilia-Romagna region. Nicknamed "Motor Valley", this sports car paradise is known for its innovative ideas, luxurious designs and incomparable craftsmanship. With four international circuits, 13 museums and 19 private collections, there is plenty to delight fans of luxury cars.
Did you know that one in four inhabitants of Bologna is a student? Moreover, the capital of Emilia-Romagna can boast of hosting the oldest university in the Western world, founded in 1088, and, by extension, one of the schools with the richest history. During the school year, cafes, bars and restaurants across the city vibrate to the rhythm of student life. Let yourself be carried away by this electrifying atmosphere!
For cycling enthusiasts looking for a cycling destination to explore, Emilia-Romagna is home to more than 4000 km of roads, cycle paths and dirt tracks for all levels. From the Po Delta to the Apennine Mountains, the region offers numerous routes and an extensive network of cycling hotels to allow you to make the most of your stay. Whether you are a nature tour, a tour to discover cities of art or a gourmet tour, you are sure to fall under the spell of this region.