Bova was born in Rome to a father from Roccella Ionica in Calabria and a mother from Acerra in Campania. At the age of 16 Bova became a local champion in the 100 meter backstroke. At the age of 21 he joined the Italian Army and performed his military duty in the Bersaglieri (sharpshooters) corps. He enrolled in the ISEF, the Italian Institute of Physical Education, but dropped out to pursue a career in acting. He studied at the school of Beatrice Bracco in Rome and also studied acting with Michael Margotta.
In March 2000, he married Chiara Giordano. They have three children, Alessandro Leon, Francesco and Sophia. In 2013, Bova and Giordano separated. That same year he started dating actress Rocio Muñoz, after the two met on the film set of Immaturi - Il viaggio (2012). They had their first child, daughter Luna, in December 2015, the same month their film All Roads Lead to Rome was released.