Bologna City Guide.
Bologna is the capital and largest city of the Emilia-Romagna Region in Northern Italy. It is the seventh most populous city in Italy, located in the heart of a metropolitan area of about one million. The first settlements date back to at least 1000 BC. The city has been an urban centre, first under the Etruscans and the Celts, then under the Romans, then again in the Middle Ages, as a free municipality. Home to the oldest university in the world, University of Bologna, founded in 1088, Bologna hosts thousands of students who enrich the social and cultural life of the city. Famous for its towers and lengthy porticoes, it has a well-preserved historical centre, thanks to a careful restoration and conservation policy which began at the end of the 1970s, on the heels of serious damage done by the urban demolition at the end of the 19th century as well as that caused by wars. It is also an important cultural and artistic centre. Bologna is home to numerous prestigious cultural, economic and political institutions as well as one of the most impressive trade fair districts in Europe. In 2000 it was declared European capital of culture and in 2006, a UNESCO “city of music.” Bologna is also one of the wealthiest cities in Italy, often ranking as one of the top cities in terms of quality of life in the country
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