Discover the best things to do in Emilia-Romagna. Read our travel tips, discover your destination through awesome pictures and plan your sightseeing including the must-see Emilia-Romagna attractions.
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Emilia-Romagna is a vast and diverse region in northern Italy that encompasses the sun-kissed beaches of Rimini and Riccione, the Renaissance jewels of Modena and Ferrara, the history and Old-World charm of Bologna, and gorgeous Apennine landscapes between Parma and Piacenza. It is well-known for its rich cultural heritage but enjoys equal fame for its modern contributions to automobile production with firms such as Ferrari, Maserati, Lamborghini and Ducati calling the region home.
Emilia-Romagna Weather: The region enjoys a Mediterranean climate, but the average temperatures can vary from the coastal regions to the mountainous interior.
Regional Cuisine of Emilia-Romagna: Prosciutto di Parma, Parmigiano-Reggiano, tortellini, Mortadella, pasta Bolognese, agnolotti, eel
Regional Wine of Emilia-Romagna: Gutturnio, Trebbiano, Lambrusco, Sangiovese
Things to do in Emilia-Romagna: Adriatic Riviera, Castello Estense, Ferrari Museum, Italy in Miniature, the Towers of Bologna
Where is Emilia-Romagna? Emilia-Romagna is located in the northern half of Italy with the River Po to the north and the Apennine Mountains to the south.
I had never been on a bus of enthusiastic travelers so eager to arrive, so they could rush to stand in line.
However, that’s what happened when I visited Parma. Only cheese produced in certain areas of Emilia-Romagna may be sold as Parmigiano-Reggiano, so Italians and foreign visitors alike flock daily to wait in lines to purchase this staple of Italian cuisine.
Some of my traveling companions chose to sample the world-famous Prosciutto de Parma and excellent local wines. I, however, was looking forward to browsing the offerings of the Benedictine Monks of the Abbey of Santa Maria della Neve. The monks have beekeeping facilities on-site where they create and sell high-quality honey, cosmetic creams, herbal ointments, syrups and other natural goodies.
As tempting as it is, you can’t mail perishable items you bought yourself, but some of the larger producers with a global presence might be able to ship them internationally for you.
If you want to save room in your luggage, you can send non-perishable local gifts, crafts and clothing via the mail. Poste Italiane offers inexpensive boxes in a variety of sizes, which include adhesive tape strips for convenience. They might require a local address for the origination section of the forms, so keep your hotel address handy.
Travelers who find wonderful local wine that isn’t available in the U.S. might try shipping it home via DHL. You can also pack it really well in your luggage. You can bring about two bottles duty-free per person.
Fun Fact: Known colloquially as the Riviera of Fun, the Adriatic Riviera is one of Italy’s best beach attractions and is home to the longest stretch of beach in Europe.
Local Dish: Bologna, Italy, is not only home to the "original" bologna, Mortadella, but also the savory, meaty sauce that the locals call Ragu, known to us as Bolognese.
Local Day Trips: While the beach is always a fun getaway for all ages, families also enjoy visiting nearby Mirabilandia amusement park or Rimini’s Dolphinarium.
Local Hot Spots: Bars near the port in Rimini have a casual atmosphere and feature live music on the beach.
Ferrara, in the Emilio-Romagna region along the Po River, is home to a treasure trove of architectural gems from the Renaissance. Ancestral home to the House of Este, Ferrara is listed among UNESCO’s World Heritage sites. Some of the most beloved artists of the era worked here, including Andrea Mantegna and Jacopo Bellini.
One historic example you won’t want to miss is the uniquely designed San Giorgio Cathedral. Its facade delicately straddles two major stylistic movements; the lower half is an excellent example of Romanesque form while the upper section was later completed in the Gothic style. Nearby, you’ll find Estense Castle where you can see all the splendor of royal excess and wealth on display in its soaring towers, deep moat and even dungeons.
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