(Seen this email before? I send it each year. But Bologna doesn’t change much, so I keep using it!)
It must be said that Italy has a lot of language-travel destinations to choose from.
So why study Italian in Bologna?
Here are some reasons…
1.) History – 3000 years of it!
Ok, most of Italy has history going back millenia, not just Bologna.
But look at a map, look at the ‘Pianura Padana‘ (the rich, flat sediment of the River Po’s flood plain).
At a glance, it’s obvious that this place will have been inhabited since the earliest days of agriculture.
Before the modern era, in the middle ages, Bologna was one of Europe’s largest cities.
It’s said (depending on who you ask) that we have the world’s oldest university. Students have been coming here to study law, then medicine, for almost a thousand years.
Before that, Bologna was the Roman city of Bononia.
And back even further, to around a thousand years before the Christian era (so three thousand years ago!) this place was an Etruscan city, known as Felsina.
Suffice it to say, Bologna is a very OLD city, and one that people have been coming to to learn for a good chunk of recorded history.
(Find out more about Bologna on Wikipedia.)
2.) Easy to get to
OK, here’s a little quiz for you.
On Tuesday 18th December (years ago, this is an old article…), Bologna Marconi ‘Aeroporto di Bologna’ was expecting arrivals from these international airports (excuse the occasional Italian spellings):
Alicante, Amman, Amsterdam, Bacau, Barcelona, Berlin, Budapest, Brussels, Casablanca, Chisinau, Copenhagen, Craiova, Dubai, Eindhoven, Frankfurt, Istanbul, Kiev, Krakow, Lisbon, London, Lyon, Madrid, Marrakech, Moscow, Munich, Paris, Prague, Seville Sofia, Suceava, Tenerife, Timisoara, Tirana, Valencia, Vienna
Bet you can’t tell me (without checking on the Internet, as I had to) which countries ALL those places are in??
There were also flights arriving from these rather far-flung Italian destinations:
Bari, Brindisi, Cagliari, Catania, Lamezia Terme, Palermo, Roma, Trapani
A bonus point if you know where all of those are. I didn’t.
You’ll notice there are no international arrivals from the USA or Australia?
That’ll be because the really long distance flights arrive at the hub airports of Milan and Rome.
But not to worry – there are fast (and inexpensive) trains to Bologna from just about everywhere.
And travel times, in these days of high-speed trains, are amazing!
Milan (1.01) is just an hour and a minute away, for example, while Rome (2.15) is only two and a quarter hours these days.
Talking of trains, once you’re here, if you fancy a day trip to Florence (0.34), Venice (1.27) or even Naples (3.15) – well, why not?
In short, Bologna is an excellent base for exploring Italy. Read this article I wrote years back: Psst! Wanna see Italy? Start here!
Or this one: 6 (cheap) day-trips from Bologna by train
(The train times quoted are from the Trenitalia website. Use it to plan your weekends!)
But maybe trains aren’t your thing?
So rent a car!
Interstates (U.S.A.), motorways (U.K.) – Italians call them ‘autostrade’ – leave Bologna in all possible directions.
3.) Not too big, not too small!
Bologna is Italy’s seventh largest city.
Which, in my opinion, makes it just about right.
Not too big, and yet not to small, either.
Students stay within walking distance of the school, which is nice.
And you can get around easily on foot, or hop on a bus, or rent a bicyle.
Green hills are visible from many places in the city. The countryside is just a few minutes walk away.
And yet it IS a city, still, with more or less everything that you might need…
4.) Lots to do (and eat!)
We run a language school, not a tourist information service.
But if I ever change role, I won’t be short of things to promote.
There’s Bologna’s world famous gastronomy, dozens of museums, a modern art gallery, a choice of theaters and movie houses, live music venues, street markets, and luxury shops.
Plus churches, piazzas, porticoes, and so on.
This is a medieval walled city, though the walls are mostly gone now. It’s laid out like a wheel, with spokes going out from the central piazza.
If you have an idle moment, just follow one of the spokes and gaze around you as you walk.
When you get out to the city gate (which marks the boundry of the old town), walk around the main road and come back in on a different ‘spoke’.
Each quarter is different and there’s so much to discover. Plus, walking is cheaper and more fun than going to the gym!
Monday: Why Study Italian at Madrelingua?
2023 Italian Course Offer!
Until 25th December 2022, you can save 20% on group Italian courses of any length beginning in 2023 at our school in Bologna!
- All you need to do is to pay the ‘Winter Offer – 20%’ course deposit (€120 instead of the usual €150)
- The deposit guarantees you a saving of 20% on your whole course!
- This offer applies to group courses only, not to individual or online lessons
- Your course can be of any length: the more you study, the more you learn!
- There’s no need to decide the dates of your course now – just email us when you know
- This promotion ends at midnight on Christmas Day – 25th December 2022
Click here to Save 20%!
Or visit the school website: