Bologna gets quite a few tourists from other parts of Italy, but not many from outside Italy, as it is surrounded by Florence, Milan, and Venice. We loved Bologna, though. It doesn't have the vast number of ancient sites of a Rome, or the charm and romance of a Venice, but it also doesn't have the gigantic crowds or high prices of either of those cities. Don't get me wrong, Rome is still my favorite place I have ever visited, but Bologna has a charm and a vibe that really set its hooks into me. We will definitely be going back.
|Random street in Bologna|
|This store we visited on our tour was amazing. I bought about 5 pounds of Parmesan Reggiano cheese to take back home. Totally worth it!|
|A market street in Bologna.|
|Bologna street scene.|
|A church in Bologna. Italy has a lot of churches, and I mean a lot.|
|Random street scene.|
|Climbing the Asinella Tower in Bologna. Note that the bottom you see isn't the bottom, it's just one of several landings you reach climbing up.|
One of the things we did was to take the bus out to the suburbs and visit the Ducati Museum and take the Ducati factory tour. My buddy T from work went with us on this trip, and he wanted to see where his Ducati was made. I was more than happy to go check it out myself. The factory is on the outskirts of town so we had to catch a bus, which we did with no problems. Useful tip-learn to use the bus system wherever you are traveling. Once you have the bus system down in a European city you have the place licked. You can get anywhere for next to nothing. It's also a fun and cheap way to see a city.
At the tour we saw the factory (no pictures in there of course) and then went through their great museum. There were some very cool things in there, such as a Ducati radio. Did you know they started out making radios? I didn't. We also saw the first Ducati 'motorcycles' which was actually an engine designed to be attached to a bicycle. We also of course say many old and new racing bikes, etc. All in all it was a great way to spend the morning. On the way back we stopped at a random restaurant and had a great lunch at which we were the only non locals in the place. The food was of course fantastic. The food everywhere in Bologna was great. We never had a meal there that wasn't great.
|Ducati factory exterior.|
|The first Ducati, a motor for your bicycle.|
|The first 'real' Ducati motorcycle.|
|The museum was very well done, with a setup that echoed a racetrack.|
|Modern Ducati superbikes.|
Well, that's all for now. Next post I'll talk about our trip to see Otzi the Iceman.