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PROVINCIAL CAPITALS: Ferrara, Forlì-Cesena, Modena, Parma, Piacenza, Ravenna, Reggio dell’Emilia, Rimini.

The regional capital was one the most important medieval cities;its university is Eurpoe’s oldest. Bologna has also been regarded as Italy’s culinary capital. It’s a sophisticated city, well worth a visit of several days. Ferrara, Modena and Parma are all once important Reinassance towns while the Adriatic towns of Ravenna(which boasts one of the world’s best collections of Byzantine mosaics)and Rimini are famous for their beaches(although the sea isn’t that clean)and most of all for nightlife.

Bologna: Piazzas Maggiore and Nettuno; Palazzo d’Accursio; Palazzo di Re Enzo; Palazzo dl Podestà; Basilica di San Petronio; Museo Civico Archeologico; Museo Civico Medievale e del Rinascimento; le Due Torri (Two Towers, unmistakable landmarks); the University quarter (along Via Zamboni); Basilica di S.Stefano (also called The Seven Churches); Basilica di S.Domenico;Basilica Santuario della Madonna di San Luca.
Modena:Palazzo dei Musei,housing several galleries among which is the Galleria Estense; the Palazzo Ducale.
Ferrara:Castello Estense;Palazzo Municipale; Palazzo dei Diamanti; Casa Romei; Palazzo di Ludovico il Moro; the city walls.
Ravenna: tomba di Dante (Dante’s grave); Basilica di San Vitale.

Taste the delicious pasta tirata a mano,handstretched pasta rolled with a wooden pin (mattarello):tortellini ,lasagne,tagliatelle,cappelletti . Pasta is generally served with ragù(meat sauce). You can also find excellent crude ham and mortadella;zampone:stuffed pig’s trotter; the aceto balsamico di Modena: Modena’s balsamic vinegar and Parmigiano Reggiano,king of Italy’s cheeses. And don’t forget to drink the famous Lambrusco wine!

In Modena the Settimana Estense in late June and early July is a week of banquets , joust and other Reinassance fun with lots of locals flitting about in period costume.
In Ferrara on the last sunday of May the eight “contrade”(districts) of the city compete in the Palio, a horse race.

Emilia Romagna, Italy - map