Situated between the Po Plain and the foothills of the Apennine Mountains, the city of Bologna is the capital of the Emilia-Romagna Region and the seventh largest city of Italy. Famous for having the oldest existing university in the world (founded in 1088), hence the nickname “the learned one” (la dotta), Bologna still hosts thousands of students contributing to the rich cultural and social life Bologna offers.The beautiful historical centre of Bologna is characterized by long porticos and towers and is remarkably well-preserved. Another nickname that Bologna has acquired over the centuries is “the fat one” (la grassa) and refers to its rich cuisine. Its culinary tradition includes the famous Bolognese sauce, or for Italians ragù, traditionally served with Tagliatelle. Also, lasagne, mortadella, and tortellini served in broth are among the local specialties you can enjoy in the many restaurants and osterias found in Bologna. No wonder Bologna was ranked 1st out of 107 Italian cities in terms of quality of life in 2011!
Bologna is ideally situated for those who are interested in exploring some of the most important cultural and historical cities in Italy such as Florence (less than an hour by train) and Venice (one hour and 30 minutes). Other places in the area, such as Verona, Ferrara, Padua or Ravenna, are also definitely worth a visit.
The following websites provide useful information for getting started and finding your way around Bologna:
Bologna Welcome – Sito turistico ufficiale
The International Women’s Forum of Bologna
The International Women’s Forum serves as a professional, cultural, and social resource where members have the opportunity to exchange experiences, make professional contacts, find support and friendship, and speak English.
The IWF Bologna has well over 150 members of all ages, backgrounds and professions, originating from more than 20 different countries ranging from recent arrivals in Bologna to long term residents who value the international community offered by the IWF. The IWF also has numerous Institutional Members, including associations, companies and universities who wish to extend the benefit of IWF membership to the English-speaking women in their organizations.
The IWF operates a dynamic website and forum which provides lots of practical information, suggestions and tips from other members for getting started in Bologna. Please consult their website for more information.