Italy: A cheesy affair with Ferraris in Emilia-Romagna
Bologna: 4 nights
Ravenna: 2 nights
7 Days Itinerary
Emilia-Romagna is a region in Northern Italy, famous for its medieval cities and rich gastronomic traditions. Italy is considered the culinary capital of the world and Emilia-Romagna is known as the food capital of Italy. Across the fertile plains surrounding the Po river, signature ingredients of Italian cuisine are cultivated.
The most famous products from this region are Parmigiano Reggiano cheese from Parma, Balsamic Vinegar from Modena, and Tortellini, Tagliatelle and Garganelli pasta from around Bologna. The wines from the surrounding vineyards and the artisanal Gelatos complement the foodie experience.
Adding excitement to the culinary journey are the designer wheels manufactured in Emilia Romagna. The stretch of land along the Via Emilia is the birthplace of some of the world famous luxury vehicles and racing cars. Ferrari, Maserati, Lamborghini and Ducati, are all manufactured here, bringing joy to the motor enthusiasts touring Emilia Romagna.
Bologna is the capital city of Emilia-Romagna and the 7th largest city in Italy. It is a historical city with a picturesque medieval center, squares fronted by porticoed walkways and beautiful churches. Bologna is also home to the world’s oldest university. Along with its extraordinary food culture, the character of the city makes it an attractive tourist destination. Visiting Bologna is easy since it is well connected to all the major cities around.
Making Bologna the base, it is easy to make day trips to the surrounding towns by car or train.
Day 1: Parma and Reggio Emilia
(Around 1 hour 15 minutes by car or train from Bologna)
Parma is best known for the world famous Parmigiano Reggiano cheese, which is not to be confused with Parmesan! Parmigiano Reggiano is produced exclusively in Italy, and that too only in four of the provinces of Emilia-Romagna, Parma being one of them. The ingredients, the cattle feed and the aging process, all add up to make the perfect cheese. Its quality is classified under the PDO regulations.
Parmigiano Reggiano is a hard, dry cheese made from cow’s milk. It has a pale golden rind, granular texture and a complex flavour. It is aged between 12 and 36 months. Parmigiano Reggiano is often called the “king of cheese” and is one of the oldest cheeses in the world. It has been produced for around a thousand years using just 3 natural ingredients: milk, salt and rennet. Italy exports Parmigiano Reggiano extensively around the world.
Founded in the 1960s, Società Agricola Saliceto produces Parmigiano Reggiano based on the traditions and expertise of the family’s forefathers. The importance given to farming the land and looking after the cattle results in the creation of high quality cheese.
The guided tour of the factory showcases the production process with cutting edge equipment and historic tools used to create each wheel. The warehouse where the aging takes place is a unique sight. At the end of the tour, a tasting is offered in the shop and one can buy the cheese too.
Founded by Pietro Delsante in 1846, Caseificio (Cheese factory) San Pier Damiani is still run by the family, earning them a listing on the register of Historic Italian Companies. It has its own farms and breeds its own cattle. All the stages of production, from fodder to final product, are adhered to with the focus on the highest quality.
A visit leads you through the entire process ending with a tasting. A cooking class is also offered for those who are interested.
Caseificio San Bernardino is a family run dairy for four generations, producing Parmigiano Reggiano cheese in accordance with the golden rules of cheese making tradition. The Caramaschi family has been handing down the expertise and passion for the art of cheese making, resulting in a product of the highest quality. There is a fully equipped modern facility with all aspects of production under careful control.
There is a factory tour available and a wonderful shop amongst beautiful surroundings.
Parma is a university town, famed mainly for Parmigiano Reggiano cheese and Parma ham. But the Romanesque architecture of the old city center is also noteworthy, especially the Cattedrale di Parma (Cathedral) and the Battistero di Parma (Baptistery).
(30 minutes from Parma and 1 hour from Bologna)
Reggio Emilia is a charming town situated between Parma and Modena. It is a town known for its art, gastronomy, lifestyle quality and “the best kindergartens in the world”.
The historic art and architecture are best represented by the 17th century Basilica della Ghiara and Teatro Municipale Valli. And contemporary creations can be seen in the bridges designed by the famous architect Santiago Calatrava for the Alta Velocità railway station. There are many bakeries and pastry shops to indulge the culinary cravings.
Day 2: Modena
(Around 50 minutes from Bologna)