Imagine an artist’s palette mixed with the most varied colours of deep reds, burnt oranges, soft warm yellows, burnt umbers and terracotta. Then imagine these colours cast upon the stunning architectural forms of a city, in these two elements combined you have the landscape of Bologna a city so alive with unique colour and form it just longs to be explored and discovered.

Capital of the Emilia Romagna region in northern Italy Bologna is home to the oldest university in the world. Founded in 1088 the Università di Bologna is a place of research and is recognised all over the world as one the most highly acclaimed academic institutions. Brimming with history, art, architecture and fine cuisine Bologna is definitely a city that won’t disappoint.

Bologna has a unique city landscape that is instantly recognisable, full of medieval buildings that cast a drama over the skyline, the deep palette of earthy toned colours adds a warmth to the city like no other and add to this the miles and miles of Porticoes (covered walkways) that are some of the most preserved in Europe, Bologna really is a very unique part of Italy.

Exploring the city couldn’t be easier as being one of the most pedestrian-friendly areas you are sure to be able to discover all on offer simply by foot. Marble pavements, shaded Porticoes and orderly architectural formations make this a relaxed atmosphere to experience. One of the best ways to really absorb the essence of Bologna is to meander the streets and avenues taking time to stop and observe the colours and grace of the buildings that sit around you.

Being at the forefront of some of the finest produce made in Italy stopping for a leisurely lunch won’t disappoint. Home of Parma ham, fine aged cheeses, balsamic vinegar, truffles, porcini mushrooms and sweet chestnuts you can imagine some of the culinary delights on offer. Classic flavours combined with the expert skills and traditions of food preparation means the food here is special and something to be savoured and remembered.

There is so much to see and discover in the city from the iconic two towers, the Asinelli Tower which has 498 steps to climb for stunning panoramic views and the Garisenda Tower that sits alongside, to the more classical and slightly smaller Fountain of Neptune with its 16th-century ornate design. If you fancy soaking up the daily atmosphere of Bologna then why not head to the Piazza Maggiore which is the perfect place for a spot of people watching amongst the historic buildings while sipping a fine Italian coffee or delving into a delicious authentic gelato from the many cafes and restaurants that line the piazza.

From the beauty of the Basilica di San Petronio with its huge Gothic architectural dimensions and its 22 chapels to the Sanctuary of the Madonna di San Luca upon a forested hill that allows for a beautiful walk and breath-taking views over Bologna you can be sure to find something to please everyone. If art is your desire then head to the Pinacoteca Nazionale di Bologna where you can find works by the classics such as Titan, Raphael and Giotto to name but a few. For something a little more modern head to MAMbo which is home to contemporary art including tributes to local still life artist Giorgio Morandi.

Wherever you wander in the city you are sure to discover an exciting atmosphere, a place that is brimming with unique colour, style and tempting delights that will create lasting memories so immerse yourself, relax and enjoy discovering all that Bologna has to offer.