There are plenty of reasons to choose to study in this fantastic city, so you may already be prepared to begin looking for student accommodation in Bologna right away! There are cultural spots to explore, delicious foods to try and the oldest university in Europe to attend.
Before you pack your bags, this guide will help you learn all about relocating to Bologna, so that you know what to expect before you even get there. Benvenuto in Bologna!
With so many wonderful cities throughout Italy, Bologna is still one of the greatest, and not just because it is the capital of the Region of Emilia-Romagna, which is situated in North Italy. Bologna is home to some of the most popular brands, such as Ducati, Lamborghini and Ferrari.
Plus, students come in droves to study at a university as historical the Università degli Studi di Bologna, or the University of Bologna, which was founded in 1088. Additionally, this makes Bologna one of the most popular "student cities" in Bologna, with the entire city center full of young people and the vibrant air that comes along with a vivid population.
Bologna is nestled in the foothills of the Appennini Mountains, which often makes the weather in Bologna a bit different than in some other parts of Italy. You can expect a lot of humidity in the summer, along with cold, wet winters.
In the winter, you can expect temperatures between 5ºC and 15ºC. In the summer, they range between 25ºC and 33ºC.
Spring can have varied temperatures, with cold air in March and April, but finally giving in to warm weather by May. From June to August in the summer, things can get rather muggy, although the breeze from the sea can be really welcomed. Nights can be cooler, especially in areas closer to the mountains. Sometimes there can be rain, as well as the occasional thunderstorm.
Italian is known to be one of the most romantic languages in the world. In fact, people who have never even stepped foot in Italy learn to speak it for its musical qualities. Italian is typically only spoken in the Italian peninsula and nearby countries. Even though it is the official language of the country, you will also see that a good majority of the young people also speak English.
During your time in Italy, it will be good to have a list of the area’s public holidays. On these days, banks, the university and even some businesses will be closed.
There are many traditions in Bologna, such as revering the Saint Protector of the city. San Petronio is revered on the 4th of October, with a myriad of activities.
Most of the other primary holidays work along with the religious calendar, such as Easter and Christmas, or have roots of a historical significance, such as the Day of the Republic (2 June) and Liberation Day (25 April). The first of May is also an important day for workers, where many receive the day off.
Below are a few more holidays to take note of:
1 January - Capodanno
6 January - Epifania
25 April - Festa della Liberazione
1 May - Festa del Lavoro
14 May - Festa della Mamma
2 June - Festa della Repubblica
15 August - Ferragosto
4 October - San Petronio
1 November - Tutti i Santi
8 December - Immacolata Concezione
25 December - Natale
26 December - Santo Stefano
31 December - San Silvestro
Bologna is known for its sense of mystery, including legends and ancient tales. It’s interesting to know that one such story relates to its students.
Legend has it that, if you climb the tallest building in the city, the Torre degli Asinelli, before you graduate, obstacles may cross your path that keep you from obtaining your diploma. As with every legend, there is a piece of truth from which it originated. In fact, during the Renaissance time period, the top of the tower was not fenced in, so sometimes students fell to their deaths. While this may sound silly in today’s age, students swear by this little bit of superstition, so it will be very rare indeed to see a student anywhere near that tower.
Bologna has yet another secret that you should check out. When you’re in the Piazza Maggiore, and you happen to see people looking at the Statue of the Neptune and having a good laugh, go have a look for yourself. We won’t spoil the surprise!