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the porticoes in Bologna

The porticoes ~ Reason #5 why I love Bologna

From Pomodoro Viaggi:

Bologna is a city of porticoes, holding the world record of 38 km through the historical center. These are most impressive in the 3.5 km portico of S. Luca (the longest in the world) the porticoes of the Certosa, those of Via Mazzini and those of modern Bologna.

The origin of the porticoes is not certain but they were developed mostly during the 1200s. In fact in 1288 the Commune of Bologna made it obligatory for anyone who built buildings in the city to build porticoes as well; moreover the porticoes had to be a minimum height of 2.66 m to allow the transit of people on horseback.

I found two more interesting links on the porticoes of Bologna: Italy, The Porticoes of Bologna and The Unesco World Heritage site on The Porticoes of Bologna.

I walked under the 666 portico arches that lead up to the Sanctuary of the Madonna of San Luca last summer and posted photos of my walk and these amazing portico arches back in September, 2008. Here's the link to my post: my hike up to San Luca under the 666 portico arches.

Porticoes in Piazza Santo Stefano:

Porticoes in Piazza Maggiore


More porticoes in Bologna:




Comments (10)

Cool pictures. I remember walking under the porticoes, but I don't think I gave any thought to the history behind them.

And Practical Magic is all yours, if you'd be so kind as to email me with your address.

fizzybeverage at gmail dot com


Girasoli, I remember these so well! We strolled along all of them, I think. Stopping now and then to purchase some irresistible something. I have a coat I bought there that I've never worn! I forgot I live in SO. CA. I hadn't realized the variation in colors in the porticos until seeing them in your pictures. Nice!


I don't have an Italy trip planned this year, but Bologna is high on my list to visit. I love the Porticoes - your pictures are great!

Love your photos. :)

G: Fabulous shots and a great history of such amazing architecture - you have made Bologna a must-see city on my future trips. Mahalo, M

Kathy (Trekcapri):

Hi Girasoli, great photos. And I remember that post you did last summer on your trip. Your posts is really putting Bologna on my Italy radar.

Thanks for this great post and sharing all of your wonderful photos! Have a great day!

This is SUCH a gorgeous collection of photos! I can't imagine people on horseback riding through!

softdrink, I read about them before my first trip to Bologna in a travel guide book. I would love to do a walking tour someday in Bologna to learn more of the history of each area. It is an amazing city. Thanks for the book!!

Jane, I know just what you mean. There are so many times I see something I want to buy but then have to remind myself that I will never wear it in Hawaii. You will just have to travel somewhere to wear that coat. Glad you like the various porticoes. I tried to show the variety in my post.

sheri, thanks! I am starting to think that maybe I should write to the Bologna tourism bureau to see if I can get some sort of discount rate for the tourism traffic I might send their way :)

Leslie, thanks :)

menehune, glad you are enjoying my Bologna posts. I have always been amazed that Bologna has not been very popular as a tourist destination. There are so many wonderful things about this city.

Kathy, I think you would love Bologna. Maybe we should set up a Bologna GTG trip one day.

Annie, thanks! I know! Picturing the horses is difficult to do.


Beautiful photos, Girasoli, and I like the way you've put them together.

It seems most cities have a few porticos but it sounds like they're a really key feature of Bologna -- I'm looking forward to seeing them. These all look colourful, with paintings decorating some, and beautiful floors beneath.

They'll also provide great shelter when I'm there on a hot June day!

Thanks sandra! They definitely provide much needed shade in the summer. They are all over the city. Some of the photos in this group were taken along the walk from "our" hotel to Piazza Maggiore.

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