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Car Rental Bologna

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Why Hertz

  • Best price guarantee

    In the unlikely event you find a lower Hertz price, we will refund the difference.

  • No Fees

    No cancellation or amendment fees and no credit card fees.When the booking is cancelled within two days of being made.

  • No Hidden Extras

    No hidden extras to pay - theft and damage cover included.

  • Complimentary Wi-Fi

    Enjoy complimentary Wi-Fi when you sign up for free to our Gold Plus Rewards loyalty programme.

Hertz in Bologna

Bologna, capital of the Emilia-Romagna region, is one of Italy’s great unexplored treasures. The city has been known over the centuries as 'La Dotta’, (the learned), ‘La Rossa’ (the red) and ‘La Grassa' (the fat), for its university, the oldest in Europe, its distinctive terracotta-tiled roofs and its memorably delicious food.

Once you’ve arrived and had time to look around this medieval marvel, you might want to add another nickname to that list: ‘il fortunato’, the lucky one.

We have pick-up points located conveniently at Bologna’s Guglielmo Marconi Airport, in the centre at the main railway station and just outside the city, so you can check in and quickly get out on to the road to see all that this wonderful region has to offer.

Simply choose from our extensive range of vehicles, from family-friendly SUVs to compact cars for city driving, and we’ll aim to have you in your car and on your way as quickly and as conveniently as possible.

A quick guide to Bologna

Bologna’s beautifully preserved medieval centre is ripe for exploration, offering up majestic architecture and culture in spades. The city also makes the ideal base from which to venture out and enjoy this bounteous region.

Wander through medieval streets

At the heart of the city is Piazza Maggiore, lined with stunning arched colonnades and medieval and Renaissance buildings aplenty. Get your bearings over a coffee at one of the many cafés before discovering the massive Gothic Basilica di San Petronio, Europe's sixth-largest church.

To the east of the piazza, the intricate web of streets that spans out from Via Clavature, better known as the Quadrilatero, is a great place to stroll, browsing colourful market stalls heaving with tantalising local produce and surprises at every turn.

Close by, you’ll find Bologna's iconic leaning twin towers. The taller of the two is the Torre degli Asinelli, built between 1109 and 1119. You can climb all 498 steps to the top for a stunning view of the city’s famed red-tiled roofs. Pause a while to marvel at the majestic monochromatic scene that stretches out below you.

The shorter of the pair, the 47m-tall Torre Garisenda is something of a hidden gem. Stare in wonder at a physics-defying feat of architecture that somehow leans even more than Pisa's famous tower.

Next, head for Piazza Santo Stefano, where you’ll find the Basilica Santuario Santo Stefano. This atmospheric labyrinth of interlocking churches was built over a 600-year period in different styles on the site of the ruins of an ancient temple to the goddess Isis.

Feast on Italy’s finest food

Even by Italy's high standards, Bologna is a veritable foodie haven. It can lay claim to the origin of many of the country’s best-known dishes, such as tagliatelle al ragùmortadellatortellini, and lasagne alla Bolognese.

To best appreciate the region’s offerings, browse the tempting stalls of the Mercato di Mezzo, a few steps from Piazza Maggiore.

You can't go far wrong wherever you choose to eat, but for something a bit special, book a table at Ristorante Pappagallo, a gastronomic icon set in a perfect palazzo by the two towers.

Sample regional cuisine with a contemporary twist, or test the skills required to perfectly execute timeless classics such as spinach-tinted lasagne or saffron-hued tagliatelle. 

Fast cars, opera and Renaissance art

The region of Emilia-Romagna is blessed with an embarrassment of riches, all of which can be discovered within easy driving distance of Bologna. Modena, one of the country’s finest centres of culinary craft, is home to the origins of balsamic vinegar and Lambrusco wine.

Wander the city’s back streets and you’re sure to uncover the perfect place to enjoy a spot of lunch. The city is also famous for its supercars: Ferrari, Maserati and Lamborghini all originate from Modena, while in the nearby village of Maranello you’ll find the Ferrari museum.

As if that weren’t enough, Modena is also the birthplace of perhaps the most famous opera singer of all time, Luciano Pavarotti. Discover his former home, which is now a beautifully curated museum in his memory.

The university city of Parma gave the world Parmesan cheese and Parma ham, as well as the great composer Verdi. Romanesque buildings including the frescoed Parma Cathedral and pink-marbled Baptistery grace its historic centre, while you can also take in a classical concert at the 19th-century Teatro Regio.

Travel to Ferrara and discover a beautiful Renaissance art city peppered with colossal palaces, ringed by its intact medieval walls.

Despite its UNESCO World Heritage status, it’s relatively unexplored and wonderfully peaceful. Historically, Ferrara was the domain of the powerful Este family, who endowed their city with the huge moated castle that sits squarely in the centre.

Car hire in Bologna is a great way to explore the best of the city, as well as giving you the freedom to venture further afield to enjoy the treasures of the wider Emilia-Romagna region.

Driving in and around Bologna

The city’s Guglielmo Marconi Airport is located close to the city centre, only a 20-minute drive away. The historic centre of the city, or Centro Storico, is designated as a ZTL (Zona a Traffico Limitato), which restricts traffic from 7am to 8pm each day in order to protect its key landmarks.

This part of the city is signposted with a red circle on a white background and monitored by video cameras with fines resulting for improper use. If your hotel is in this part of town, it’s worth asking them in advance to help register you for special permission to drive or park in the city centre.

In and around the historic old centre, paid parking is available in cheap parking lots or in underground car parks that are situated on the outskirts of the centre. Alternatively, look for a parking garage, indicated by a square blue sign with a white ‘P’.

Bologna is well positioned for exploring the delights of Emilia-Romagna. Modena is 45km away on the A1/E35 and Parma is 99km via the same route. The A1/E35 then continues north-west to Milan.

Ferrara, with its lavish Renaissance architecture, is 55km north-east from the city on the A13, which takes you all the way to Venice in under two hours. The beach resorts of the Adriatic are two hours away via the E45 autostrada (motorway), while the sparkling Renaissance jewel of Florence is an hour-and-a-half drive south of Bologna and perfect for a day trip.

Driving in Italy, as in most of mainland Europe, is on the right-hand side. Speed limits vary from a maximum of 130km/h on the autostrada to 100km/h on non-major motorways, 90km/h on local roads and down to 50km/h in built-up areas.

It’s important to note that all Italian motorways – autostrada – are toll roads and these are indicated by green road signs.