Archiginnasio di Bologna
Archiginnasio di Bologna
4.5
Points of Interest & LandmarksArchitectural BuildingsLibraries
9:00 AM - 7:00 PM
Monday
9:00 AM - 7:00 PM
Tuesday
9:00 AM - 7:00 PM
Wednesday
9:00 AM - 7:00 PM
Thursday
9:00 AM - 7:00 PM
Friday
9:00 AM - 7:00 PM
Saturday
9:00 AM - 2:00 PM
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Neighborhood: Santo Stefano
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Most Recent: Reviews ordered by most recent publish date in descending order.

Detailed Reviews: Reviews ordered by recency and descriptiveness of user-identified themes such as wait time, length of visit, general tips, and location information.

Popular mentions

4.5
4.5 of 5 bubbles2,026 reviews
Excellent
1,421
Very good
520
Average
65
Poor
11
Terrible
9

Simona C
Stockholm, Sweden7 contributions
5.0 of 5 bubbles
Jan 2020
Absolutely worth the time if you are in Bologna, even for a day. Make sure to read about the rebuilding and restauration efforts after the 1944 bombing. We had the extra luck that a couple of smaller exhibitions were open in the hallways of the building (one on opera characters and another on salami), very educational.
Written February 3, 2020
This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of Tripadvisor LLC. Tripadvisor performs checks on reviews as part of our industry-leading trust & safety standards. Read our transparency report to learn more.

antoncarth
High Wycombe, UK812 contributions
5.0 of 5 bubbles
Sep 2022 • Couples
Archiginnasio is a hidden gem to visit in Bologna. It’s located near to piazza di Maggiore, approximately ten minutes walking distance. You can visit teatro anatomico and biblioteca comunale with just €6.00. It’s amazing how well maintain is a university who founded back 500 years ago.
I strongly recommend a visit.
Written October 1, 2022
This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of Tripadvisor LLC. Tripadvisor performs checks on reviews as part of our industry-leading trust & safety standards. Read our transparency report to learn more.

Brad
Hong Kong, China173,427 contributions
4.0 of 5 bubbles
Feb 2024 • Family
Archiginnasio of Bologna is located at Piazza Galvoni just south of Piazza Maggiore in the city centre of Bologna. The building was constructed in the late 16th-century by architect Antonio Morandi and was the seat of the University of Bologna, the oldest continuously operating university in the world, for several centuries until later being repurposed as a municipal library for which the building still serves to this day.

You can visit the inner courtyard of Archiginnasio for free to enjoy the elaborate wall and ceiling frescos that line the portico, hall and stairways just inside. However, there are upstairs sections including the historic Anatomical theatre and the Sala dello Stabat Mater, lecture hall which require ticket purchase (€3 per person as of March 2024) to enter. These can be reserved in advance online or timed entry or you can try your luck at the ticket desk. Opening hours are 10am to 6pm daily.

Note: We tried walk in visit during a weekend and found them sold out on the day. We returned on Monday with online ticket reservations and found that it was possible to do walk-in visit on that day as most were there purchasing tickets on the spot, only a few of us had advance purchased tickets.
Written March 26, 2024
This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of Tripadvisor LLC. Tripadvisor performs checks on reviews as part of our industry-leading trust & safety standards. Read our transparency report to learn more.

an0nymus45
Slovenia16 contributions
5.0 of 5 bubbles
Jun 2022
The teatro anatomico and sala dello Stabat Mater are something which cannot be missed. In the sala there are books from past scientists on display such ar Euclid's Elements, Lagrange's books and so on. Impressive.
Written June 10, 2022
This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of Tripadvisor LLC. Tripadvisor performs checks on reviews as part of our industry-leading trust & safety standards. Read our transparency report to learn more.

Cymro
Coimbra, Portugal3,308 contributions
5.0 of 5 bubbles
Mar 2022
Archiginnasio di Bologna is where you'll find the Anatomical Theatre and the Archiginnasio Municipal Library. It was once the centre of the University of Bologna. It's stairways and corridors are a joy to see and a visit here must be near the top of your 'to do' list in Bologna. Entrance is very cheap. €3 if I remember correctly.
Written March 9, 2022
This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of Tripadvisor LLC. Tripadvisor performs checks on reviews as part of our industry-leading trust & safety standards. Read our transparency report to learn more.

HermanZeGerman
Dallas, TX28 contributions
5.0 of 5 bubbles
Sep 2021 • Couples
This place is an easy must-see. It's unfortunately not included in the Bologna Welcome card, but entrance is only €3. The anatomical theater was fascinating, and the collection of old books was amazing as well. Plan to spend 30-45 minutes here.
Written September 26, 2021
This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of Tripadvisor LLC. Tripadvisor performs checks on reviews as part of our industry-leading trust & safety standards. Read our transparency report to learn more.

Buckster21
London, UK368 contributions
4.0 of 5 bubbles
May 2023 • Couples
A fascinating building that predates almost all other universities everywhere. Students are lucky if they can learn in such a beautiful setting. There are not many places where you can see old Bologna and how advanced it was compared to the rest of Europe.
Written May 21, 2023
This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of Tripadvisor LLC. Tripadvisor performs checks on reviews as part of our industry-leading trust & safety standards. Read our transparency report to learn more.

StefanM47
Sofia, Bulgaria340 contributions
5.0 of 5 bubbles
May 2013 • Solo
The Archiginnasio is one of the most interesting buildings in Bologna. It was built in the 16th century and used as a seat of the ancient University("Studio") untill 1803. Since 1838 it has housed the Civic Library. Two grand staircases lead to the upper storey with classrooms and two great halls. The room walls, the vaults of the staircases and open galleries are decorated with inscriptions and monuments dedicated to the teachers of the "Studio" and about 7000 coats of arms, which indicate the home country or city of the student, along with the student's name. The permission to design one's own coat of arms was exclusively reserved to those students that filled the representative role in the University's system. The upper level still houses so called "Anatomical theater" (built 1637) shaped like an amphitheater with a coffer ceiling and statues in various anatomical positions. The two main statues represent Hippocrates and Galen.
Written July 12, 2013
This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of Tripadvisor LLC. Tripadvisor performs checks on reviews as part of our industry-leading trust & safety standards. Read our transparency report to learn more.

Mairwen1
United Kingdom10,807 contributions
4.0 of 5 bubbles
May 2019
The University of Bologna was founded in 1088. Erasmus and Copernicus were students. Albert Einstein gave a series of lectures on relativity here. That alone was enough to make me want to see it.
The uni wasn’t always in this Palace. Originally it was scattered in different parts of the city but in the mid 1500s, Pope Pius had the amazing foresight to bring together all of the separate parts into the one single, central building.
The two really interesting things to see here are the very beautiful walls and the original anatomy theatre. The walls look very Harry Potter-ish and are literally covered with about 6000 heralds and crests of long-gone students. They were very beautiful and somehow sad as you thought of all the lives that had passed through this university over the centuries.
In between each arch is a plaque honouring an eminent professor, often with a brief Italian & English description. I spotted Bartolomeo Riviera who was of interest only because I have had my tonsils out and he invented the tools for tonsillectomies in 1700s.
The anatomy theatre is where corpses were dissected on large marble slab since the 1600s. It is a strangely ornate and attractive room (I have posted a separate entry for this).

Other Points of Interest:
Stabat Master Hall – it is only small and not particularly interesting except that this is where Einstein delivered his lectures in 1921.
Book-binding exhibition (free) - this was far more interesting than it sounds because they had a large display of books from the 1500s, with goatskin covers and ornate locks and clasps

Getting There:
• The entrance is not immediately obvious. It is centrally located, in the square behind Piazza Maggiore. Once inside, there are still not a lot of signs but the theatre and Stabat Hall are upstairs. The upper story wraps around a central courtyard and in one of the corners, we spotted a counter which sold tickets for the Anatomy Theatre and Lecture Hall and he pointed us in the right direction.
• Entry to the Anatomical Theatre and Stabat Mater Hall € 3
• There were no lines and it was not crowded inside so there is no need to buy a ticket in advance
• Opening hours are from 10am every day until early evening
• Allow 30 - 60 minutes
Written December 17, 2019
This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of Tripadvisor LLC. Tripadvisor performs checks on reviews as part of our industry-leading trust & safety standards. Read our transparency report to learn more.

Ria K
sponge rocks, florida80 contributions
5.0 of 5 bubbles
May 2013 • Friends
Walking into the Archiginnasio is an startling experience. It is so ornately painted and decorated, floor/ceiling/wall that it's almost impossible to take it all in. Go in and wander around, take lots of pictures. Go upstairs to the Anatomical Theater. (hint, there are free bathrooms nearby there too). Then after you've been amazed by the painting and the theater, look at the pictures at the entrance to the theater of how the building looked after being bombed in WW2. You will realize that this building has been lovingly and painstakingly put back together from tiny shards. That is why some of the coats of arms are lacking part of a name or why some of the decor on the wall is missing. They did an amazing job putting this important place back together.
Written May 26, 2013
This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of Tripadvisor LLC. Tripadvisor performs checks on reviews as part of our industry-leading trust & safety standards. Read our transparency report to learn more.

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Archiginnasio di Bologna - All You Need to Know BEFORE You Go (2024)

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