Rimini is the capital city of the province of Rimini in Emilia Romagna and it is undoubtedly the best coastal resort along this stretch of coast, as well as being the most famous in Europe. This is hardly surprising with its wide, sandy beach which stretches for 15 kilometres. The sea bed has a very shallow gradient making it safe for children and therefore an ideal family holiday resort. It became a holiday destination when the first bathing establishment opened in 1843.
All of the resorts and facilities stretching along the length of the beach are equipped to the highest standard. There are over one thousand hotels, hundreds of restaurants and bars, theme parks, a harbour and access to all sporting facilities. Rimini is also well known for its extensive and exciting night life.
Away from the coast the city is packed with art, history, beautiful buildings, gastronomic delights and an endless array of interesting shops. Rimini has, in the past, constantly been the gateway to the Orient and it has occupied by so many different civilisations that its history and culture is extremely rich.
The main places of historical interest are:
The Arch of Augustus was constructed in 27 BC. It has a single gate of just under 10 metres high and 8.45 metres wide. Merlons were added in the Middle Ages and it was carefully and fully restored in the 18th century by Tommaso Temanza.
The Fontana dei Quattro Cavalli (fountain of four horses) was built in 1928 and is one of the symbols of Rimini. The fountain was demolished in 1954 but was subsequently accurately reconstructed in 1983.
The Tiberious Bridge was constructed on the river Marecchia in the year 14 AD under Emperor Augustus. The bridge still connects the city centre to Borgo San Giuliano and connects to the roads Via Emilia and Via Popilia that lead north. The bridge was built from Istria stone and consists of five arches resting on massive pillars with breakwater spurs.
The Torre dell’Orologio (The Clock Tower) is in Piazza Tre Mariri and was built in 1547 and reconstructed in 1759 by Giovan Francesco Buonamici. In 1875 the top of the tower ruined due to an earthquake but it was restored in 1933. The actual clock, dates back to 1562 and is decorated with terracotta panels depicting the signs of the zodiac, months and lunar phases. In the central arch of the tower there is a memorial to the victims of World War II.
Fontana della Pigna
Monument to Pope Paul V
Tempio Malatestiano is the Cathedral of Rimini and was built in the Gothic style during the 13th century and it has a wide, marble façade which is decorated with sculptures. The cathedral was badly damaged during World War II but the pieces were salvaged from the rubble and it was carefully reconstructed.
Other churches and religious buildings within the city are:
The church of San Fortunato was built in 1418 and housing the 'Adoration of the Magi' which was created in 1547 by Giorgio Vasari.
Church of San Giovanni Battista is a 12th century church to which rich stucco decoration was added in the 18th century.
Church of San Giuliano Martire was built in the mid 16th century.
Church of Santa Maria dei Servi was built in 1317 but was entirely transformed in 1779 by architect Gaetano Stegani. The interior contains some rich Baroque plasters.
Church of Suffragio can be found in Piazza Ferrari and was constructed by the Jesuites in 1721.
Tempietto of Sant’Antonio
The Bell Tower of the former Cathedral of Santa Colomba
There are many exquisite palaces, castles and villas in Rimini, most of them once belonging to the rich and powerful during various periods of history.
Castel Sismondo was built by Sigismondo Pandolfo in 1437 and was later used as a prison.
The Grand Hotel was built in Art Nouveau style by Swiss architect Paolito Somazzi between 1906 and 1908 and since 1994 has been protected as 'National monument'. It has a wide, elevated terrace and two central towers which were originally topped by richly decorated moorish domes. With over 100 bedrooms and sitting rooms the hotel has hosted many eminent people over the years
Palazzo dell'Arengo e del Podestà built in 1204 and was once the seat of the judiciary and civil administrations.
Villa Des Vergers is situated on the hills just outside the city and is the largest and most famous of all the villas in the area. It was built in the 17th century for the Diotallevi family and in 1843 it was bought by the French historian and archaeologist Adolphe Noel des Vergers. It was then completely renovated during the latter years of the 19th century. The villa is completely surrounded by six hectares of parkland and beautiful gardens.
The city of Rimini has many green and natural areas and boasts 1.3 million sq.m of public parks within the city. It has over forty thousand trees consisting of 190 different species and an enviable city cycling network.
Population density: 1,091.7 per square km
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