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Bologna, Parma, Regio Emilia, Ferrara

Old Nov 18th, 2014, 08:25 AM
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Bologna, Parma, Regio Emilia, Ferrara

Will be spending 6 days in late September '15 in that area. Please advise how my time might be divided among specific cities. Should I base in one city and use day trips or move at least once? You might also recommend specific lodging alternatives as well.

Many thanks for your assistance.
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Old Nov 18th, 2014, 08:33 AM
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I forgot to add that our interests are culinary as well as specific sightseeing. I have reviewed various posts previously made for these specific cities but wish thoughts on dividing my time from people whom have been there.

Thank you.

H
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Old Nov 18th, 2014, 08:33 AM
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I just revisited Ferrara, which I like very much. I also use it as a base for a day trip to Ravenna, which has fabulous mosaics. I stayed at the Locanda Borgonuovo, which I recommend if you like B&B type places, but not if you want a hotel. I stayed three nights, and could have stayed four.
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Old Nov 18th, 2014, 09:02 AM
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DH and I based in Bologna for side trip to Ravenna (agree with thursdaysd about the mosaics). We ran out of time for Parma and Ferrara. And Faience, darn it. We stayed at what was a Sofitel opposite the main train station for ease of taking the train.

We ate well in Bologna but decided Ravenna was so much lighter without all of the porticos (even though some were very pretty).
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Old Nov 18th, 2014, 09:07 AM
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If you are using a train then

Bologna for most nights, with day trips to all but Ravenna (one night trip)
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Old Nov 18th, 2014, 09:15 AM
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Bilbo:

Any recommendations in Bologna for lodging (B&B or Hotel?)

Thanks to all, just what I am looking for.
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Old Nov 18th, 2014, 09:20 AM
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bilboburgler are you thinking Varenna? We did Ravenna easily as a day trip. For sure one could stay there longer though!
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Old Nov 18th, 2014, 09:27 AM
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You can reach Ravenna in an hour by train from Bologna if you pick the right train. No reason to stay the night.
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Old Nov 18th, 2014, 09:35 AM
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Bologna Centrale is really handy for side-trips and central enough in Bologna to consider staying nearby (also handy for the airport shuttle).

What I've done in the past is go to www.booking.com and pull up your dates, then use the map feature over lower left on the screen to zoom in to the area between the train station and Piazza Nettuno. I've stayed both at the Mercure across from the station (no complaints) and at the Milenn Hotel a block or two away (OK), but there are some nice boutique hotels (like i Portici) and popular standbys (like Paradise) just a couple blocks further.

If you use the map function you can look at price, and then customer review scores, then descriptions, to nail down something that sounds like it best fits your style.
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Old Nov 18th, 2014, 11:58 AM
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FWIW, in 25 trips to Italy since '98 one hotel stands out in a year's worth of stays. Google booking.com for Petronio Residence in Bologna. Across the street from the due torri, keyless entry, new elevator, ultra modern décor, affordable, tutti conforti.
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Old Nov 18th, 2014, 12:04 PM
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I like the Paradise Hotel in Bologna. An easy walk to the Piazza Maggiore, and also to the train station. The airport bus has a stop very near the hotel.
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Old Nov 18th, 2014, 01:47 PM
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Bologna is a lively city with a lot to see. We stayed for 5 days with one day trip ...to Florence (45 min)
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Old Nov 18th, 2014, 07:29 PM
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I'm going to Bologna in December/January and will be staying at the Hotel Metropolitan. I'll post a trip report here if you want to check in then.
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Old Nov 18th, 2014, 08:29 PM
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I stayed here in a single room this summer. Was very happy with the hotel and its location.

http://www.bolognarthotels.it/hotel-corona-d-oro.aspx

I loved Ravenna and the mosaics. With more time I would have spent the night just to soak up a little more of the ultra-relaxing vibe.

Have a fab trip!
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Old Nov 19th, 2014, 06:08 AM
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Thanks to all for your responses. Any votes for Parma or Regio Emilia?

H
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Old Nov 19th, 2014, 07:40 PM
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Italian Days Food Experience www.italiandays.it/. I highly recommend this tour with Alessandro. They pick you up at your hotel. It's an all day tour of a cheese, balsamic vinegar and prosciutto ham factory. After, you have a 2 hour sit down lunch. A fantastic day. bring your credit card because you will have the opportunity to purchase DOP cheese and 25 year old vinegar.
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Old Nov 19th, 2014, 10:13 PM
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we are big fans of parma, as well as bologna. parma has a very nice, walkable center. i think it's worth a visit-- even without the amazing food, beautiful baptisery, and so forth-- just to see the very moving 'Camera di San Paolo'.

if you do go to bologna, we absolutely LOVED our airbnb place, which was right on the canal!! (we always fantasized about who was lucky enough to live there!) it was an amazing $75us a night and was a studio with kitchen. grocery store around the corner. just perfect. (but not for light sleepers, as the canal viewing spot can cause people to gather late at night.) if interested in details on the listing, let me know.
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Old Nov 20th, 2014, 01:09 AM
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Ravenna, only reason for staying overnight is there is so much to see, I couldn't do all the mosaics in one day unless I was very organised and then there is lunch etc.

I've never stayed in Bologna (Faenza, Ferrara and some tiny villages around) but having been through it, it look the logical place to stay and certainly is the central train hub for the area. If you like smaller towns then I recommend the bicycle-centric Ferrara.
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Old Nov 20th, 2014, 04:37 AM
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Bologna, the Albergo Centrale is a very good hotel with reasonable rates.

And in Parma, be sure to have a meal at La Fochetta.
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