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‘I went to Italy's Bologna for an olive oil massage and tasted bolognese I'll never forget’

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Taking in the panoramic vistas of beautiful Bologna, the phrase la dolce vita (“the sweet life”) springs to mind. Foodies flock to northern Italy’s Emilia-Romagna region, of which Bologna is the capital, for its rich Bolognese and mortadella sausage washed down with sangiovese wine.The mediaeval Mercato di Mezzo even features street signs denoting the food on offer, such as Vicolo dei Ranocchi, Alley of the Frogs!

The terracotta-tinged city is also a magnet for history buffs thanks to its leaning towers and centuries-old porticos, which are now on UNESCO’s World Heritage list – not to mention the oldest university in the world.

It might not attract the tourist numbers of Florence, Tuscany, Rome and Venice, but its fascinating culture, architecture and nightlife make it a must-visit.

A luxury stay About 14 miles away from Bologna lies Palazzo Di Varignana, a deluxe resort and spa nestled in the Bolognese hills above the town from which it takes its name.

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