I love Sundays in Bologna! With the streets in the historic centre empty of traffic, pedestrians and cyclists reign supreme on the ancient cobblestones. Locals come out in full force to shop, eat and wander around the markets. The Piazza Maggiore and the adjacent Piazza del Nettuno (with its famous Fountain of Neptune) are the focal points, where tourists and locals alike gather – there’s always something going on here, from cooking demonstrations and exhibitions to festivals and concerts.

Via dell’Indipendenza on a Sunday morning!

The Piazza Maggiore is the central point in the city. In the summer, the square forms the decor of the Cinema Ritrovato, a terrific programming of vintage movies where audiences can watch a movie under the stars.

The Cinema Ritrovato Festival takes place every summer in Piazza Maggiore and it’s free. Grab a seat and enjoy a classic movie!

When I visited in early-October, the square was buzzing with people attending the Mortadella BO Festival, a tribute to this famous salami. There were contests, mortadella-tastings and cooking shows. I volunteered for the mortadella pasta (Sorpresine di Mortadella) workshop!

Your’s truly making mortadella pasta!

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Around the square, street performers entertained the crowds with mini-concerts. The bubble-makers were a big hit with the kids!

Kids having fun with the bubbles next to the Fountain of Neptune in Bologna.

There’s more to do on Sundays in Bologna. Locals cram into Via Pescherie Vecchie in the Quadrilatero district, just off Piazza Maggiore, for street food and a glass of wine.

Aperitivo in Via Pescherie Vecchie

Another hotspot is the Piazza Santo Stefano – its Sunday flea and antique market draws large crowds!

The Sunday flea and antique market.

And if you’d like to treat yourself to some divine gelato, head over to Cremeria Santo Stefano (Via Santo Stefano 70) or Cremeria Funivia at Piazza Cavour, two of my favourite gelaterias in Bologna!

Lemon and chocolate gelato at Cremeria Funivia. Divine!

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If you’re looking for something more thrilling, climb the Asinelli Tower, Italy’s tallest leaning tower. The views of Bologna are spectacular!

Panoramic view of Bologna from the top of the Asinelli Tower, the tallest leaning tower in Italy.

If you’re visiting the Emilia Romagna region, plan on spending a Sunday in Bologna and immerse yourself in this vibrant city.

Read more about things to do in Emilia Romagna or other things to do in Bologna on Velvet Escape.



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