The walk to Madonna di San Luca – Bologna

In my getting to know Bologna post I told you a little bit about the Portico walkways that are a great feature of the city.

Undoubtedly the best ‘Portico’ walk you can do in the city is the one up to Madonna di San Luca. The walk is under the cover of the Porticos all the way from the city centre and is around 3.5km long with 666 arches. It took many years to complete the full portico walkway work originally began in 1674 and it wasn’t completed until 1732.

Madonna di San Luca

The sanctuary at the Madonna di San Luca in Bologna, Emilia Romagna

Today along the way you will meet many locals who make this a regular walk or even use it for a fitness work out by running up to the top followed by a gentle stroll back down. There is also a yearly procession from the Cathedral San Pietro in the centre of Bologna up to the sanctuary of San Luca following the portico walkway.

Porticos Bologna

The religious history of this site stretches back to 1160 with the foundations of the original church being laid in 1194. Once you reach the top there are some great views back towards Bologna and over the rolling hills. It was a wonderful walk and one I hope to repeat very soon!

The sanctuary at San Luca is open daily from 06:30 or 07:00 on holidays. During weekdays the sanctuary will close between 12:30 and 14:30.

San Luca Bologna

If you ever come to Bologna make sure you don’t miss out on this incredible historical walk.

Normally I do walks in the countryside so this was so different for me. Being a man-made walk out of the city I was unsure of what it would be like however I was blown away and as I have said I cant wait to do the walk to the Madonna di San Luca again.

Views from San Luca, Bologna

If you are in Bologna and wanting to visit San Luca yourself up to date opening times and information can be found on the official website here

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