001337_Bologna University_Bologna_Italy_Laura Mason_002-Hybris
001337_Bologna University_Bologna_Italy_Laura Mason_002-Hybris

Bologna University

If you’ve even so much as walked through Bologna’s historic streets, it’s highly likely that you’ve already seen Bologna’s ancient university, perhaps without even realising. The University of Bologna was actually the first university ever created, and is therefore the world’s oldest. First opened in 1088, it has maintained its place at the top of the league charts, and is globally renowned as one of the world’s most important centres of learning, enlightening some 85,000 students annually. Thanks to nearly a millennium of progress, the university has expanded to cover an entire district within Bologna today – appropriately known as the University Quarter.

For the tourist, this area represents one of the largest complexes of historic buildings within Bologna, and visitors can enjoy walking tours amid some of the most important university buildings, as well as visits to the university’s many museums, most of which can be found in the Palazzo Poggi. 

Recommended on this multi centre

8 day suggested trip

Bologna and Tuscany Countryside

From £949 per person
ATOL Protected
  • Climb the 500 steps of Bologna’s Two Towers for panoramic views
  • Enjoy three nights in Italy’s foodie capital
  • Relaxing self-drive between the two destinations
  • Savour local wines and tour a Tuscan vineyard
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