Who doesn’t like a good view? Seeing Bologna from up above will help you understand why the city has been nicknamed ‘la rossa’: the historic center is a quaint expanse of red brick roofs. Plus, you’ll be able to get a sense of the urban layout, which, in the centro storico, hasn’t changed much since the Middle Ages. And you’ll be able to admire the beautiful hills that frame Bologna to the south.
Below is a list of spots for great panoramic views of Bologna.
- Let’s start with one of the most iconic vistas, which you can enjoy from an iconic Bologna monument: the top of the Asinelli Tower (see my dedicated post for details about the climb: it’s 498 steps to the top!).
Beyond Piazza Maggiore, the top of the Asinelli tower affords a 360° awesome panorama; check my post for more photos.
- How do you get to catch a panoramic view that includes the Asinelli tower? Climb the Torre Prendiparte, a B&B which, every Saturday, is open for group tours up to the rooftop terrace. Other special events are often arranged in the tower, check the website for the latest updates.
- Another great panoramic view of Bologna can be seen from the recently opened Terrace of the Basilica of San Petronio (€3 fee), which can be accessed from the rear of the Basilica.
- Another church in Bologna which guards good panoramic views is the city’s cathedral, Cattedrale di San Pietro. You’ll have to climb its bell tower, the city’s second tallest tower, which is only open on Saturdays, from 2 to 4:30 pm (€5).
- Another good outlook, not so much of the entire city, but of its most important square, Piazza Maggiore, can be admired from the second floor of Palazzo D’Accursio (if you don’t know much about this historic palace, read my post).
- Moving away from the city center, the most famous panoramic view of Bologna is the one you catch from the Piazzale di San Michele in Bosco (bus n. 30 from central Via Rizzoli).
- And how not to mention the beautiful views of Bologna you get as you walk up or down the Portico of San Luca, the one connecting Bologna with the Basilica di San Luca.
- I also very much like the panorama you get from the little-known Parco di San Pellegrino, part of a walk in the hills I recommend in this post. I can take you there on one of my walking tours, which I’m about to launch.