As capital of the Emilia Romagna region, Bologna is an art city, a university center and a place renowned for its excellent cuisine. It hosts important international trade fairs and is one of the world’s greatest motor cities. Ducati, Lamborghini and Maserati were all born in Bologna and Ferrari’s headquarters can be found in nearby Modena.
About BolognaItalians love to define Bologna as a scholarly, fat and red city. The scholarly label refers to the site of the world’s oldest university (1088). The fat label alludes to Bolognese food, with its tagliatelle and tortellini. Finally, Bologna is a red city because of the color of its houses and also thanks to the political traditions of the city’s administration.
Bologna is also a city of porticos, which stretch for nearly 40 kilometers in the city center, and of the Garisenda tower, the only real leaning tower in Italy (the leaning tower of Pisa is in fact a bell tower).
As an Etruscan settlement, Bologna later became a Roman town (Bononia). During the medieval period, the city developed into a free commune which reached the peak of its power in the 13th Century. Despite falling under the control of the Papal States in the 16th Century, the city maintained legal and political autonomy.