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Day trips from Bologna

New York City, New...
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Day trips from Bologna
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We are considering going to Bologna and also using it as a base to travel for day trips. We are planning on 10-14 days, not sure where to stay and for how long. We would like to travel to Riccione, Modena, Parma etc. Possibly late September. Should we travel from Bologna or stay in one of the other place, if so which one. We have been to Italy many times and feel comfortable with public transportation from a base city.

Thank you all

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New Brunswick, New...
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1. Re: Day trips from Bologna
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Bologna has reason enough to keep you in place for all that is on display there. Parmo might occupy all your time getting there and reconnoitering the place. Sizing up a place as a worthwhile destination is different for each location. Much depends on the depth and extent of your tastes leading you to visit these places in the first place. Is it more superficial to go to one place than another? Itemize or identify your preferences and allow them to emerge as priorities before grouping them according to location and proximity. Bologna might be worth it for concentrating your time there depending on the extent and depth of your interests. Day trips can do more than get you places. They can wear you out with frequent travel in many directions. Travel time is not the same as vacation time. Read about and research these places and size them up as worth while places to visit depending on what is going on in each destination. Are you acclimated to viewing antiquities and visiting art and archeological museums and churches? Cathedrals take more time if you visit the interior structure. What is your personal travel style? Are you obligated to stop for meals at traditional times for eating food just because the clock tells you to eat food? How much individual style goes into planning an itinerary? Do you follow crowds? Many places within simple shouting distance of Bologna might pre-occupy your time more than what shows up on the maps or in the guide books, In which direction of the Italian vacation compass from Bologna are you inclined to travel? Adriatic Sea coast is not that far away. Set up a geographical perimeter from Bologna as a boundary line for travel. Ravenna has reason to attract many visitors but those people might not be in the same category of tourist. Know the regions and what is on display there. Le Marche has many reasons to attract you. That is for you to decide. Splurging and wasting time with more money and less time does not always add up to time not well spent. Allocating the same time to each destination is artificial and incorrect or wasteful and wrong. Read about the destination. If you live near a large university that offers courses and degrees in things Italian go there and ask questions. What knowledge about this part of Italy will you bring with you and how will you want to utilize it there? These are fair questions for planning details of an itinerary. We know about more places than what shows up on the map because we have studied contemporary Italian history and have communicated with fellow travelers. Will yo u be proficient in Italian? Certain destinations will call for more than a short perfunctory day trip. Ravenna might be in that category. Stay where the interests lead you and are commensurate with time spent in getting there and returning for a second visit later. Do not get into the habit of spending too little time in places that twill bring you back later for a second visit. Modena Ferrara and Forli and Faenza and Cremona for different reasons need your attention if you interests lead you in that direction. Do not automatically describe your self as just like others for that is false travel planning to be avoided. You have determine what place has what you want to see not because others go there but because it satisfies your reasons for visiting Bologna..Do not short-change Bologna itself. Are you associated with a particular group for study purposes? Does this trip allow you to go elsewhere? Explain.

Virginia
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2. Re: Day trips from Bologna
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It's just a personal preference--one base gives you time to settle in, have a neighborhood spot for coffee, that kind of thing. Two or more bases gives you variety, less travel time perhaps. I tend to not enjoy long day trips, and I like to balance city-village, and with your time frame you could certainly do that without feeling rushed.

I'm a rabid sea lover, so Riccione offers a nice examples of something quite different to pair with Bologna.

New York City, New...
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Thank you for your detailed recommendations. We are Italian, third generation and do not speak Italian, my husband can get by though. We will stay in Bologna for 6 nights? possibly and travel 2 or 3 days to nearby places. We did this last two times we were in Italy, using Genoa and Lucca as base cities. I research places we will want to visit, churches etc. We have been to Italy 5 times and have never been to this area. I will take your advice and definitely plan our days before we arrive. We will fly to Barcelona, stay for 5 nights (a favorite city of ours) then to Bologna.

Vignola, Italy
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Bologna is one of the most important Italian train hub, so is a perfect base for daytrips by train to several cities and towns. I suggest you to choose an hotel not far from the train station (check on the map, for example, where La Gare hotel is: you'll find several hotels in that area), so you can easily walk to the station for trips without struggle with too many buses or taxi. Then you have only to decide where to go. Remember that the most of cities and towns worth one full day: Modena, Ferrara, Ravenna, Parma, Cesena, Faenza, Rimini, Piacenza, Carpi, Vignola... You can easily reach even cities of other regions, like Verona, Mantua, Firenze, Padua. Are all trips that don't take you more that one hour of travel to be reached.

On top of it you can decide for a daily guided tour by car or shuttle to visit some food producer (Parmigiano-Reggiano, Traditional Balsamic vinegar....) or car manufacturer (Ferrari, Lamborghini...); are usually located far from the main cities, so more difficult to go there by public transport.

Of course you can decide to split you days in two or more places: Parma and Ferrara could be to charming cities where to sleep, but even Rimini or Riccione if you want to rest some days on the beach.

Vignola, Italy
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5. Re: Day trips from Bologna
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You can certainly use Bologna as a good base but it is also nice to spend evenings in other towns. I'd recommend Parma, Ferrara, Modena, Ravenna, Piacenza as easy day trips from Bologna. But there are many small towns on the train line... Vignola, Imola.... these are fun because most tourists don't stop. Bologna is the train hub for northern Italy so it is easy to get to so many places. I love Emilia Romagna.

New York City, New...
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6. Re: Day trips from Bologna
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Thank you looking forward to it in 2022

San Francisco...
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7. Re: Day trips from Bologna
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This post is of interest to me, as I'm planning a 4-night stay in Bologna this October (hopefully Italy will be open to American tourists by then).

Planning to take a couple of day trips from Bologna, possibly to Florence (but have been there many times before), Modena, Parma, Reggio Emilia, Ravenna, or Verona. Prefer less than an hour of train journey each way. Not interested in churches or beaches, but fond of architecture, history, charming old towns.

Any insight and comments would be appreciated, thanks!

Pittsburgh...
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8. Re: Day trips from Bologna
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Janettoli, we are considering using Genoa or Lucca as a travel base. Would you be willing to share what worked well for you during your previous trips?

Vignola, Italy
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Genoa and Lucca aren't good bases for daytrips to Emilia-Romagna. In the middle there is the Appennine mountain chain, that make the trips much more tricky both by car or by train.

New York City, New...
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10. Re: Day trips from Bologna
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Definitely. I have notes on our trip. I will get in touch with you.

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