Capital of Emilia Romagna, Bologna is one of the most beautiful Italian cities, which still retains its ancient medieval and Renaissance features intact. Many attractions and an above average quality of life have made it one of the most popular tourist destinations in the beautiful country.
Mobility and viability have a positive effect on the quality of life. So here's one guide on how to move around Bologna: info, costs and advice!
- Useful Tips
- How to get from the airport to the center of Bologna
- How to get around on foot
- Con i mezzi pubblici
- By car
- User questions and comments
The best way to visit Bologna is definitely on foot or by bike, also due to the ZTL and pedestrian areas. The center is quite intimate, but the attractions to visit are many, and some are located just outside the center. For this reason, for a first approach to the city we recommend that you first take a guided walking tour, to identify the landmarks and get to know the city better.
As mentioned, a green alternative is the bike: the flat ground of the city and the pedestrian areas or limited traffic areas are an excellent incentive for a ride in the open air and in the name of discovery.
For a quick overview, there's the evergreen open-top tourist bus.
To visit the surroundings, you can rely on urban transport. Public transport, managed by the TPER company, they cover an itinerary that includes the most important attractions of the entire city, including the "out of town" beauties, such as the Bolognese hills or the viewpoint from the terrace of San Michele in Bosco! To reach the Sanctuary of the Madonna di San Luca, one of the main attractions of the city, also opt for the San Luca Express panoramic train!
- Recommended solutions and means: on foot, by bike, by bus
- Solutions and means not recommended: taxi, car
- City cards and season tickets recommended: day ticket (from € 6,00), City Pass 10 trips (from € 14,00)
How to get from the airport to the center of Bologna
Bologna is served by Gugliemo Marconi airport, located 10 km from the city center, in the Bologna Borgo Panigale area. It will be possible to reach the city from the airport by: train (Marconi express to the central station, € 18,00), shuttle (BLQ, € 6,00) and taxi (Cotabo and Cat, starting from a fixed rate of € 17,00).
Guglielmo Marconi Airport
- Distance from the center: 10 km / travel time: 15 min
- By taxi: average cost from € 17,00 / travel time: 15 min
- By bus: average cost € 6,00 / line 40
How to get around on foot
Moving on foot remains the best way to visit the historic city center (closed to traffic), contained within not too long distances and protected by the characteristic arcades, which represent a very valid shelter against the rain. A walk is there perfect solution to observe and discover even the hidden corners of the city.
For a first approach to the city, we recommend that you take a walking tour of the center. Starting from Piazza Maggiore, within a few hundred meters you can visit the Basilica of San Petronio (right in the square), the two towers, that of the Asinelli and that of the Garisenda, stroll under the arcades of via dell'Archiginnasio or via Saragozza , all in a pedestrian area closed to traffic.
For others itineraries on foot or by public transport, download our Smart Guide for visiting Bologna for free.
Con i mezzi pubblici
Public transport represents the fastest solution to visit the whole city. You can use the convenient buses (in Bologna there is no subway and tram). The cost of the ordinary ticket is € 1,50 and it is valid for 75 minutes.
If you have little time to visit the city or you just want to settle in, we recommend the City Red Bus. You can sit comfortably on the open deck of the bus and admire the monuments and the architectural beauty of the city. This is also a great solution to face the hot summer days! If from the center, however, you want to reach the Madonna di San Luca Sanctuary, one of the main attractions of the city, you can opt for the San Luca Express panoramic train.
The bus service includes 41 urban lines (including two night lines, 61 and 62), which connect the various districts of the city, plus the Aerobus Airport-Central Station Line, plus four shuttles.
- Downloadable map: bus-bologna
- 5: 00-1: 00; indicative times, each line follows its own timetable
- Ticket / single ride cost: € 1,50; on board € 2,00
- Cost of ticket booklet / season ticket: 10 rides carnet € 14,00, Eco Ticket € 40,00
In a city like Bologna, getting around by car is not a recommended solution, especially if you are there as a tourist.
It is good to know that much of the historic center is completely closed to traffic or subjected to Ztl, also finding parking near the center could sometimes prove to be a really difficult task. Therefore, rentals are not recommended, if not strictly necessary, such as an on the road in the region. In this case, we advise you to opt for an accommodation with parking included for your guests, in order to leave the car there for the days of visiting Bologna.
The circulation of vehicles is limited every day, from 7:00 to 20:00. Within the ZTL area, only the cars of customers of the hotels located in the center and hybrid or zero-emission vehicles can circulate. The entrances are all indicated by special signs and video surveillance. It will be possible to buy the ticket for the ZTL in two different versions: daily (€ 6,00), four-day pass (€ 15,00). All the info on the official website of the Municipality of Bologna.
Finally, there are some completely pedestrian areas and they are Archiginnasio, Zona T (via Indipendenza, Rizzoli and Ugo Bassi), Zona Universitaria and via Azzo Gardino.
Stops and parking
As anticipated, finding parking in Bologna can sometimes be very difficult, especially close to the restricted traffic area. The city becomes more liveable by car after 20:00, time when you can move freely even within the ZTL and you can park in the areas delimited by the blue stripes (paid parking).
Below we will show you some free parking to be found (if you are lucky) even before 20:00:
- Charterhouse parking: via Gandhi, 325 parking spaces, unsupervised, served by bus lines 19, 36, 38 and 39 - Get directions
- Tanari car park: via Tanari, 450 parking spaces, served by bus line 29B - Get directions
- Prati di Caprara car park: via Prati di Caprara, 160 parking spaces, open every day from 6:30 to 22:30, served by bus lines 16,39, 39 and - Get directions
- Santa Viola parking: via della Ferriera, 52 parking spaces, always open, served by bus line 13 - Get directions
- Antistadio parking: via Andrea Costa, 283 parking spaces, served by bus lines 14 and 21 - Get directions
- Marco Polo parking: via Mario Fantin, 58 parking spaces + 2 dedicated exclusively to the disabled - Get directions