Bergamo – A Simple Guide

Bergamo is one of those little jewels that really does take many people by surprise. It is a wonderful city steeped with history and offers a wealth of artistic values and culture.

If you are flying from Bergamo airport and have several hours to spare before your flight, it is well worth taking the time to visit.

The city is is built on the grounds of the old town of Bergomum. Bergomum was once an integral place along the military road between Friuli and Raetia. It was actually destroyed in the 5th Century.

Bergamo A City Of Two Parts

BergamoBergamo has both an upper town known as ‘Città Alta’ (Upper City) and a lower town that is known as ‘Città Bassa’.

The upper town is also known as the ‘Old Town’ and this is the historic part of the city. The ‘Upper Town’ was originally built as a hillside fortress with large walls to protect the town. Today, there is very little traffic in the old town, as it is mainly visited by tourists.

Città Alta Bergamo

The Città Alta really is a wealth of rich historic heritage. It is a walled city that offers its visitors a variety of sights from the wonderful old winding narrow streets to the artistic treasure and building dating back to medieval times and that make the Città Alta’ what it is today.

There are many things to see and do as you quietly meander through the old streets. The wonderful collection of buildings, museums, restaurants and churches that all provide a medieval feel, simply take you on an historical journey.

Things you should see in Città Alta:

The Piazza Vecchia: The Piazza Vecchia, is the heart of Città Alta and was is thought to have been the first part of the town to be built. Today, it still provides the medieval atmosphere as it proudly boasts the renaissance architecture, palaces and clock tower.

Palazzo della Ragione: It is currently home to paintings from Accademia Carrara but was originally the seat of administration of the city.

Duomo: This is the cathedral of Bergamo which was built in the 17the Century.

The church of Santa Maria Maggiore: Built in the 12 Century, the church is a popular attraction and offers a wonderful example of Romanesque

The Colleoni Chapel (Cappella Colleoni): This is the tomb of the soldier Bartolomeo Colleoni, who was originally from Bergamo and who commissioned the chapel for his tomb.

The Rocca – Rocca or ‘Fortress’ is home to the Risorgimento Museum and also one of the cities oldest churches, the church of Sant’Eufemia.

There are several museums in the upper town such as the The Archeology Museum, The Science Museum and The Donizetti Museum that are worth visiting. All display a large collection of paintings, works of art and memorabilia.

Città Bassa(Lower City)

Città Bassa, is quite a contrast to the upper city. Although the lower city still has several buildings that date back to the 15th Century, many buildings were either modified or were designed and built several Centuries later. As well as the upper city, the lower part of the city has many of it’s own buildings and attractions to see and has a very popular theatre and music scene.

The lower city of Bergamo is now a vibrant and busy area with traffic flowing through it and offering visitors a wide selection of modern shops, bars, restaurants and hotels.