Emilia Romagna lies between the River Po to its north and the Apennine Mountains (to its south). It is one of the most fertile and productive regions of Italy, thanks to the mitigating effect that the Adriatic Sea has on the coastal climate.
The diversity between the mountains and sea offers visitors to Emilia Romagna breathtaking views, in addition to beauty for both the eyes and spirit, with a mixture of the earthy colors, the aromas and the fresh sea air. Not to mention that Emilia Romagna is a hotbed for music, cinema and art appreciated nationally and internationally.
Many who love the combination of sun, sea and entertainment choose the Romagna Riviera. It possesses the longest beach in Europe, and is where visitors flock to enjoy its sport offerings and leisure facilities. Towns such as Rimini, Riccione and Cattolica are highly-outfitted for touristic reception, emphasizing relaxation and fun.
Further from the coast, the beautiful landscape of the Apennines, for instance, makes the region ideal for horseback riding or trekking in the area between Parma and Piacenza. Make a visit to the splendid parks and wonderful nature reserves.
The hinterland features several wellness spas like Salsomaggiore and Bagno di Romagna, due to its many types of water springs, as well as modern facilities and technology.
Both culinary and artistic methods found themselves on the fertile soil of this land, and their roots run deep.
This is the land of Verdi’s novels and Giovanni Pascoli’s poetry, as well as Fellini’s unmistakable cinema - a director who became a legend through his many masterpieces that come to life in this, his native region. In Emilia Romagna, one can enjoy amazing views anywhere, and the list of places to choose from is endless.
Emilia Romagna sits on the border with the third-smallest country in Europe, the Republic of San Marino.
The provinces of the region are: Bologna (the region's capital), Ferrara, Forli-Cesena, Modena, Parma, Piacenza, Ravenna, Reggio Emilia, and Rimini.
Art, history and architecture are only some aspects in the wide range of features characterizing Emilia Romagna. Bologna is part trade show city and commerce, part grande dame of culture, art and cuisine, and in part college town with a rather alternative flair. Similarly to Bologna's own diverse characteristics, the Basilica di San Petronio, one of the most beautiful churches in Italy, displays a with its half marble and half raw façade.
Those who want to reach the heights of the city must climb the 498 steps of the Asinelli Tower. The view from its top will reward all those who make the climb.
Ferrara, recognized by UNESCO as a World Heritage Site, is a marvelous example of Renaissance splendor perfectly preserved. This can be seen in the roads, façades of the buildings and the other artistic treasures the town has to offer, especially the Castello Estense.
Modena, then, boasts its Romanesque cathedral and the Ghirlandina Church Tower.
With no fewer than 8 Christian monuments deemed worthy of the UNESCO World Heritage List, Ravenna is Emilia Romagna's city of mosaics. The masterpieces of this town, a capital of the Byzantine (Exarchate) Empire, bear witness to the wealth acquired over its long history. Highlights include: the Basilica of Sant'Apollinare Nuovo, the Mausoleum of Theodosius and the Basilica of Sant'Apollinare in Classe (featuring some of those above-mentioned spectacular mosaics).
Faenza, rich in monuments and historical and cultural heritage, is internationally-acclaimed for its ancient ceramics industry, dating back to the 13th Century.
In the province of Modena is Maranello, where sports car enthusiasts can visit the Ferrari Museum to see the most prestigious cars produced - along with race trophies and photos - by this world-famous manufacturer. And Imola, with its historic forts and piazzas, is the seat of the Enzo and Dino Ferrari Autodrome, continuous venue for bicycle and motorcycle events.
It is finally possible to visit all of Italy from just one location. In the heart of the Adriatic Riviera, we can go from one end of Italy to another in the matter of seconds, thanks to Italy in Miniature. A park with 273 small-scale reproductions of the most important Italian and European monuments, young children in particular can have fun seeing the beauties of the Bel Paese by way of various learning routes designed just for them.
Emilia Romagna itself offers a diverse series of itineraries, almost all customized to visitors’ demands.
For nature lovers, 2 national parks, 14 regional parks and 11 regional reserves offer sport and leisure to those who want to plunge into the green. The flora and fauna typical of the area can be enjoyed via trekking, kayaking and cycling in complete freedom.
Horseback riders can follow itineraries on the Via Francigena in the areas of Piacenza and Parma, enjoying the many parks and following the myriad paths - even off the bridle-ways - that are scattered almost all over the region.
Another well-catered sector to explore here is that of beauty and wellness. Several spas offer relaxation and rejuvenation through their therapeutic and regenerating treatments. Salsomaggiore, Tabiano, Bagno di Romagna, Castrocaro, and Porretta are only some of the places that are best-known for their spas, another integral aspect of the region.
Then, the "roads" of wine and cuisine are a good way to discover the historical and cultural identity of the territory, with its typical products and unforgettable tastes.
Finally, we cannot forget the fairs and festivals held throughout the region year-round. Just take your pick!
A journey in discovery of the roots of this region leads in many directions - one of these paths is the art of taste. The region is known for its bold and refined cuisine, from those of the countryside of Emilia to those of the Romagna coast, via the lagoon of the Comacchio Valleys, with its famous eels.
Discovering a region means tasting the results of its traditions, from the typical Erbazzone, a quiche with spinach, or the pisarei e faso, small dumplings with beans made in the area of Piacenza, to the tortelloni, agnolotti and all types of homemade pasta enhanced by their delicious fillings, herbs and flavors.
We can stop in Bologna to try its mortadella, perhaps inside rolled or folded piadina bread. The unquestioned king of Parma, yet well-known and enjoyed all over the world, is of course Parma Ham (Prosciutto di Parma) that, together with the wonderful Grana and legendary Parmigiano cheeses, are the pride of this land's gourmet traditions.
As in all Italian regions, good wine in Emilia Romagna is a given: Gutturnio, produced in the hills of Piacenza,Trebbiano, Lambrusco, Barbera, Sauvignon and Sangiovese.
Simplicity and taste is the winning combination that makes the cuisine of this region so special.
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