Cruise Port Atlas | Ravenna, Italy Day Trips | Attractions

Ravenna, Italy Day Trips | Attractions

With limited time in port, planning is the best way to make the most of your time. Should you strike out on your own? Should you hire a local guide? Or should you book a shore excursion offered by the cruise line or an international tour company? Below we have listed the attractions and activities that many other cruisers have enjoyed. This information should help you plan.

The advantage to cruise line tours is that they are timed for your visit and give you flexibility to change your mind after your trip begins. The advantage of using a large international firm is that tours are often less expensive than cruise sponsored tours. The advantage to using a local tour company or guide is that prices can be significantly lower or you may be able to get a customized trip just to see the attractions that interest you most.

Cruise lines that visit Ravenna: Voyages to Antiquity, Oceania, Regent Seven Seas, Seabourn, Silversea, Holland America, Princess, Royal Caribbean

Key Attractions: Mausoleum of Galla Placidia, Neonian Baptistery, Archiepiscopal Chapel, Basilica of Sant'Apollinare Nuovo, Basilica of San Vitale, Bologna, St. Petronia Basilica, Sanctuary of the Madonna di San Luca, Ferrara, Esterno Castle, Diamond Palace, Cesena, Malatestian Fortress

Mausoleum of Galla Placidia


Port to City Center - 14 KM, 22 minutes
Link to Full-Page Google Map

Ravenna's beautiful mosaics are housed in rather plain early Romanesque and Byzantine structures that belie the treasures they house. When the Mausoleum of Galla Placidia was placed on the UNESCO list, its mosaics were described as not just among the oldest, but also nearly perfect. Within the historic district are eight buildings on the UNESCO list. They are the Neonian Baptistery (built about 430), the Mausoleum of Galla Placidia (430), the Arian Baptistry (500), the Archiepiscopal Chapel (500), the Basilica of Sant'Apollinare Nuovo (500), the Mausoleum of Theodoric (520), the Basilica of San Vitale (548), and the Basilica of Sant' Apollinare in Classe (549). The first of these buildings was constructed by Roman Emperors and their families during the period when Ravenna was the capital of the Western Roman Empire. The middle group was built while the Ostrogoths ruled a kingdom from Ravenna. And the last were built when the city was the Byzantine capital of Italy.

Ravenna's Historic place in Roman and Byzantine History   Basilicas, Mausoleums and Baptistries   Mosaics   8 Sites on the UNESCO list of Heritage sites   Parmigian Cheese, Balsamic Vinegar and Parma Prosciutto  

Uneven surfaces and hills    Somewhat Wheelchair Accessible

Photo Mausoleum of Galla Placidia by currybet

Piazza Maggiore in Bologna


Port to Bologna - 77 KM, 60 minutes
Link to Full-Page Google Map

Bologna is one of the most vibrant cities in Italy and the home of Europe's first University, founded in 1088. It was awarded the title of European Capital of Culture in 2000. Though it is an industrial center, it also has many historic churches, including St. Petronia Basilica, one of the world's largest, as well as the second largest historic district in Europe. Bologna is sometimes called the Red City because of the iconic red roofs on many of the city's historic buildings. The city is also famous for its historic defensive towers, some of which lean frighteningly. Just outside the town is the Sanctuary of the Madonna di San Luca, a historic basilica that can be reached through an arcade 3.5 kilometers long. The cuisine, music, and culture of this city are renowned, so those who are not interested in historic monuments will still find plenty to enjoy in this city.

Roman, Medieval and Renaissance   Sanctuary of the Madonna di San Luca   Many churches, walls and towers   Not just the famous spaghetti bolognese  

Varied Walking    Somewhat Wheelchair Accessible

Photo of Bologna's Piazza Maggiore by Tango7174

Ferrara's Esterno Castle


Port to Ferrara - 74 Km, 90 minutes
Link to Full-Page Google Map

Ferrara was an important cultural center during the Medieval and Renaissance periods and was long dominated by the d'Este family who built many of its most important historic monuments, including the Esterno Castle. The city is surrounded by a Renaissance wall which is the most complete in Italy besides those in Lucca. Among the most beautiful buildings in the city is the Diamond Palace, built around the time Columbus sailed to the new world. The outer walls are made of diamond-shaped white-veined marble and the building now houses the National Picture Gallery with a magnificent collection of Renaissance masters from the School of Ferrara. Ferrara is an Hermitage city, associated with the St. Petersburg Museum and has been named a UNESCO World Heritage site due to its historic architectural wonders. Ferrara has the longest existing Jewish quarter of any city in Italy.

Medieval and Renaissance Architecture   History   Classic cuisine   UNESCO World Heritage Site  

Varied Walking    Somewhat Wheelchair Accessible

Photo of Esterno Castle by Massimo Baraldi

Inside the Dome of the Abbey of Santa Maria del Monte


Port to Cesena - 36 KM, 40 minutes
Link to Full-Page Google Map

Not far from the city of Ravenna is the hilltop town of Cesena with some significant historic churches, the Abbey of Santa Maria del Monte, the oldest public library in Europe, and the Malatestian Fortress. The fortress was used as a jail by Cesar Borgia to incarcerate Caterina Sforza. The views of the surrounding countryside and the impressive monuments of the town are well worth a visit.


Library, Monastery and Castle   Medieval and Renaissance   Overlooks the surrounding region and the Adriatic  

Difficult Walking    Not Wheelchair Accessible

Photo of Santa Maria del Monte by Uomodis08


Port to Dozza - 62 KM, 55 minutes
Link to Full-Page Google Map

Just off the road to Bologna is the small hilltop medieval town of Dozza where Caterina Sforza built another castle and where there is an annual mural competition featuring the works of Italian and international artists. The town is also the center of a vibrant local wine culture.

Hilltop Dozza

Castle   Annual Mural Competition   Local Wines  

Difficult Walking    Not Wheelchair Accessible

Photo of Dozzo by Durmas

Interests Key:

Art Architecture Beach Children Wild Animals Local Cuisine Flora Gardens-Parks Geology

Diving UNESCO Views Wine Dance Music Shopping History Hiking

Walking & Wheelchair Accessibility:

No Walking Easy Walking Normal Walking Difficult Walking Accessible Limited Not Accessible