Bologna, Italy

Bologna’s Green Hills: Villa Spada to Villa Ghigi

Wikimedia Commons: Ugeorge.

The southern part of Bologna is surrounded by gorgeous green hills, with numerous windy roads, paths, parks, and terraces that make for a scenic but challenging run. Our 11.5 km loop is a taste of these hills, featuring two healthy climbs and great panoramas. There are many other paths and roads to explore in this area as well.  Note: Villa=Park

Start at the Villa Spada Park, just south of the SS64 and near the Arco Del Meloncello (2 km from the city center). This first 0.5 km through the park is steep! Continue into the Parco San Pellegrino Villa Puglioli to the Trecento Scalini, which has great views. A loop of the park is 1.5 km. The next section is a climb of 100m over 1 km to Villa Ghigi (Park), using Via di Casaglia and the windy, narrow Via del Genio (note: narrow, no shoulder). The park is a lush green space offering tree-lined trails and great views of Bologna and the countryside. Run through the park to the Vista Panoramica observation deck (great view!), then making your way back to the start using Via San Mamolo for just over 1 km, then LEFT on Vile Aldini to the start.

Note: The route can be accessed from Bologna center — it’s 2 km from Piazza Maggiore.


  • 7.4 km (4.7 miles)
  • 250m (822 feet)
  • Villa Spada (park), just south of the SS64
  • Good bus access. It's 2 km from the city center.