Lonely Planet Writer

Eataly a theme park for food lovers opens in Bologna

Travellers flock to Italy for an array of reasons: to enjoy the abundant beauty of its historic cities, the collections of art on display, and let’s not forget the food. Now there’s a new reason to visit the country, with this week’s unveiling of the latest venture by the internationally-acclaimed market emporiums, Eataly.

Fishmongers present fish dishes at FICO Eataly World agri-food park in Bologna

FICO Eataly World takes you on a culinary journey into the makings of what we eat and Italian ‘agri-food’ culture. Boasting over 45 eateries, 40 farming factories, 200 animals and 2000 cultivars plus a 9000-square-metre food market all within its two-hectare property, it is an immersive experience from field to fork on the outskirts of Bologna, the capital of one of the most serious Italian foodie hotspots, Emilia-Romagna.

Pizza bakers prepare traditional pizza margherita at Eataly.  Image by VINCENZO PINTO/AFP/Getty Images

Beyond eating opportunities, there are educational rides and training sessions ideal for the cooking enthusiast yet equally palatable for groups and families. FICO Grand Tour (€15) is a guided experience in the fields, factories, restaurants, kiosks, markets, and shops of the site with one of their Biodiversity Ambassadors, while educational rides have a focus on Fire, Earth, Sea, Animals, Bottled Goods, and the Future. Cooking classes include gelato-making for kids, cheese and salami, or pasta and bread baking for more adult novices, plus unique experiences such as becoming a beekeeper for the day. With 30 events and 50 classes daily, plus the option to grab one of the onsite bikes to explore this new ‘World’ at your own leisurely pace, there is something for everyone.

FICO Agro Food Park of Eataly in Bologna, Italy. Image by Roberto Serra – Iguana Press/Getty Images

Eataly describe their latest venture as showcasing ‘the taste and the beauty of Italy illustrated to all citizens of the world. From top to toe, the culinary delights of the country are housed under one roof to experience, and enjoy, for your palate’s pleasure.

FICO Eataly World is open daily from 15 November 2017.

By Nardia Plumridge