Cultural Trip number two was to Bologna, a place that can definitely be classified as a proper city compared to Siena, but that still managed to charm, at least me anyway.
The trip was only three days long, but it felt like we did so much.
We took the train and, after getting lunch, boarded for the incredibly short ride.
After hotel check-in, we were free to get a post-travel lunch and then we began our guided tour.
Bologna was an incredibly interesting place to see in general. There were so many towers to see and, in the main piazza, a fountain where, depending on which side you stand on, the main figure looks quite young or quite old.
The most visually striking aspect of the city was, of course, the church. While every church I’ve seen in Italy has been, as anticipated, spectacularly beautiful, this particular church was different.
Half of the church was ornately constructed in marble. Marble, however, is expensive, and apparently no one budgeted properly because they couldn’t afford to finish the church fully in marble as they’d planned.
Honestly, I just love the idea of getting halfway through construction and realizing, “Eh, halfway is good enough”.
I also think the stark contrast between the bright bottom and dark top is really beautiful.
When we entered the church, there was the most gorgeous organ music playing. I seriously could have just sat there and listened for hours, but we had more to see.
The following day, after viewing how both Parmesan cheese and Balsamic vinegar are made, we had a ton of free time to explore the city on our own.
Which is where the Erasmus events really come in handy. I’d met an English student named Frankie just the weekend prior in Siena. She studies at Bologna and showed myself, Erin, and Mary to the shop where I ate the most amazing gelato I’ve ever tasted.
Our last day was spend making pasta by hand and then eating it.
It was difficult, but easier than expected to turn this:
It was exhausting and incredibly fun to visit Bologna and get the feel of a bigger city for a few days. Not to mention the recipes I’ll be taking home with me!
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<p><span style="color: rgb(29, 29, 29); font-family: Arial, Verdana, sans-serif; font-size: 12px; line-height: normal; background-color: rgb(237, 237, 237);">Hi! I'm Taylor and I major in English and minor in History at the University of Richmond. I am a novice traveler at best, and have never been anywhere a car couldn't take me, so I am incredibly excited to be studying in Siena, Italy for the next academic year. In addition to my major and minor, I also am incredibly passionate about music, voice and piano being my preferred instruments, and can't wait to see what musical outlets I find in Siena. I can't believe I'm spending an entire year in a city I know I'm going to fall absolutely in love with and I can't wait to share my perspective of Siena with you!</span></p>