Almost anyone that visits Bologna by train will take a stroll down Via dell’Indipendenza – a roughly 1km long street connecting Bologna Centrale train station to the city center. It is one of the widest streets in town and is filled with restaurants, cafes, and shops ranging from dollar stores, a few H&M stores (not sure why there is more than one), and several designer stores.
Via dell’Indipendenza on a weekday is a nice place to get some shopping done but it can get a little too crowded with everyone shuffling around under the porticos. It’s on the weekends when the street is closed to traffic, the cafes have moved all their seating into the middle of the street, and street performers and artists selling their work are present every few steps that the street embodies that truly magical, European feel you read about.
I can’t help but get excited when the weekend arrives and I can plant myself at a cafe table in the center of Via dell’Indipendenza, drink a cappuccino (if we are particularly lucky that morning and are able to flag down a waiter), and watch all the people pass by.