The best castles in Emilia‑Romagna

Those with a penchant for history will not be short of places to visit in this part of Italy.

Along the Via Emilia: exploring Italy’s most beautiful art towns

Discover some of the country’s finest architecture along this Roman road.

Lifting the lockdown lid: rediscovering Italy’s finest attractions

As the country opens its door to tourists, we take a look at some of Italy’s lesser-known wonders.

Ferrara

Seek out the early Renaissance at its most exquisite, in the magic frescoes of Palazzo Schifanoia. There’s been a certain mystique attached to Ferrara ever since Jacob Burckhardt called it ‘the first modern city in Europe’ in his classic Civilization of the Renaissance in Italy. Whether or not Burckhardt was exaggerating can be debated endlessly;…

Ravenna

Immerse yourself in glittering green-gold beauty, with the greatest collection of Byzantine mosaics anywhere. Tucked away among the art towns of Emilia-Romagna there is one famous city that has nothing to do with Renaissance popes and potentates, Guelphs or Ghibellines, sports cars or socialists. Little, in fact, has been heard from Ravenna in the last…

Rimini

Sunbathe and dance the night away, but don’t miss Rimini’s enigmatic Renaissance jewel: the Malatesta Temple. Seen by the aliens from their spaceships, the Adriatic Riviera must be one of the most unusual and enticing sights of Europe. Welcome to ‘Linear City’ – 70km long and a few blocks deep, a mass of compacted (and…

Po Delta Park

Bring a zoom lens for the flamingos at one of Italy’s most important wetlands, and for the medieval art in majestic Pomposa Abbey. The main attractions along the coast from Mesola to Ravenna are the Po Delta and the magnificent Romanesque Abbey of Pomposa, though there are plenty of Italian family lidos in the vicinity…

Brisighella

Taste the olive oil of this medieval village set in the beautiful landscape of ‘Tuscan Romagna’. Brisighella, 12km south of Faenza in the Lamone Valley, is a charming colour-drenched village, a certified ‘Slow City’ and thermal spa with an unforgettable skyline of sharp crags crowned by the golden towers of the castle and the Torre…

The Trebbia

Take a dip in one of Italy’s most pristine rivers. ‘Today I have gone through the most beautiful valley in the world,’ wrote war correspondent Ernest Hemingway in 1915, after driving through the Trebbia Valley, where the wild meandering river has carved verdant hills into odd-shaped cliffs and bowls. The Trebbia’s sparkling turquoise waters are…

Parma

Puzzle over the enigmas of the Camera di Correggio, painted by the city’s master of lightness and grace. One of Italy’s great art cities, and the second city in Emilia-Romagna after Bologna, Parma’s many admirers cite her splendid churches and elegant lanes, her artworks and antiquities, the lyrical strains of grand opera that waft from…