Bagnara defensive system, planned by Barnabò Visconti in the XIV century, consisted in a moat surrounding the boundary wall of the the fortress.
It is the only still complete example of medieval “castrum” in Emilia Romagna.
The present castle was built in XV century on the ruins of the former one; the reconstruction took several decades and was probably wished by the Landlords who succeeded along the years: Imola Bishop, Manfredi family, Colleoni family, Girolamo Riario and Caterina Sforza.
The last added pieces are the west positioned keep, dating back to 1479 and the elegant porch commissioned by Caterina Sforza.
After the ephemeral occupation by Cesare Borgia, known as “il Valentino”, towards 1500, the town lived some troubled decades, till it returned part of the Papal States. Its condition was however particular: as a matter of fact, it was a domain of Imola bishop, who had full powers on it. The fortress became thus the residence of bishop’s officer and underwent some alterations aiming to trasform it into a residential building (towers were roofed and so on).
In the XVII century the drawbridge connecting the fortress to the town was suppressed. Only hooks and the chute were left.
After Unity of Italy, it was confiscated, auctioned and bought by the Town Council. After it became a school, a recreation meeting point, a war shelter and again a school.
In the keep visitors can admire the top, the pillbox and the underpassages; while the other tower, east positioned, which can be considered a little jewel. Worth of mention, beside the guns and the former defensive systems are also the elegant porch wished by Caterina, the recently restored yard and the cerimony hall. Here eight precious pictures are exhibited. They are part of the legacy of a Lord from Bologna and date back to the XVII and XVIII century.
Address: Piazza IV Novembre 3 – 48031 Bagnara di Romagna (RA)
Phone: 0545 905540
How to get
Historical town centre, inside the old city walls. Car and bus parks. Partially accessible to disabled.
Saturday, Sundays and holydays, 10.00-13.00 | 15.00-18.00. On July and August, 10.00-13.00. Please phone to check opening hours
January 1st and August 15th
(Updated to 08/11/2022)