Bergamo is located in the Lombardy region just northeast of Milan. It is well known for holding a whole lot of Italian history as well as spellbinding architecture. A visit to its older upper district called Città Alta reveals its beautiful cobblestone streets and the Duomo di Bergamo or the city cathedral which it is home to. This guarantees a great deal of fun if your are spending one day in Bergamo.
How to Spend One Day in Bergamo
How to Get from Milan Bergamo Airport
After a pretty much stressful flight, arranging transport before you land is a much easier way to continue your journey. A coach transfer between Milan city center at Milan Central Station and Bergamo Airport is a great choice. It comes with air conditioning and Wi-Fi alongside guaranteed maximum comfort. The distance is only 52 kilometers and it typically takes about an hour to arrive at the Milan city center. Also, you could book a car online and pick it right up at the airport as an alternative.
Explore Citta Alta (Upper City)
Citta Alta offers you a look into ancient Italian history. It is surrounded by 16th-century Venetian Walls and is home to the Rocca di Bergamo fortress. Amazing structures like the Basilica of Santa Maria Maggiore with its gilded interior, handsome piazzas houses and the intricate marble facade of the Cappella Colleoni are a number of the awe-inspiring sights present. Similarly, Citta Alta holds delis, boutiques, cafes, wine bars, and trattorias.
Walk Around Piazza Vecchia
Piazza Vecchia is one of the most popular places in Bergamo and has remained the heart of political power for many centuries. The Palazzo Della Ragione, which is the oldest municipal seat in Lombardy is one of the buildings that you should definitely check out while on your walk. Beautiful restaurants and cafes all dot this landscape and are great for a romantic lunch or dinner.
Discover Santa Maria Maggiore Basilica
The Santa Maria Maggiore Basilica bears a very strong connection to the city of Bergamo. Its construction began in 1137 and it got more adornments as time went on in the centuries that followed. Lorenzo Lotto, who is notable for his work decorated the interior of the building. A spectacular feature of this building is that it has only side entries.
Visit Cappella Colleoni (Colleoni Chapel)
The Colleoni Chapel is regarded by most as the most beautiful building in all of Bergamo. The interiors hold multiple artworks from notable artists and the facade is decorated with red and white marble.
This Italian renaissance masterpiece also holds some mystique, such as the belief that touching the coat of arms on the Chapels gate at midnight brings good luck. This should definitely top the list of things to do in Bergamo.
The Battistero has a whole lot of significant features from the number “eight”which is thought to be magical to the eight walls which gives it a unique profile. There are eight statues on the outside which represent the virtues Faith, Hope, Charity, Fortitude, Justice, Prudence, Temperance, alongside Patience.
The bass relieves which are also wight in number all hold some scenic details from the life of Jesus Christ and were sculpted by Giovanni da Campione.
Venetian Walls and UNESCO World Heritage Site
The Venetian Works of Defence which passes along a transnational path has been recognized by UNESCO as a world heritage site. This has effectively boosted Bergamo’s historical and cultural value. You should check out this site as a matter of priority.
Palazzo Della Ragione
The Palazzo Della Ragione is a perfect combination of historical art and medieval architectural designs. Over the course of its existence, it has been damaged and rebuilt multiple times and has also been used for various other purposes. Today, this building plays hosts to thousands of visitors at any given time.
The Contarini Fountain is one of the most easily recognized fountains in Bergamo thanks to its distinct design; it is decorated with statues of lions, snakes, and sphinxes. Although it is mainly recognized for decorative purposes now, it used to serve as a reservoir for water storage.
The Roman Forum
The remains of the Roman Forum can be found at the base of Campanone.
It used to be the heart of public life in the 1st and 2nd century AD and basically, every single event that you can think of used to be hosted here. The well-preserved remains help you feel a touch of the past.
Ride the Funicular
Riding the funicular guarantees you a mind-blowing view of the plains and hills. The San Vigilio Funicular was specially constructed to aid urbanization of the hill and to connect it to the rest of the city. There used to be two coaches which could hold up to 32 people each but they were replaced with a single one that could hold 55 people upon renovation.
Pass through the San Giacomo Gate (Porta San Giacomo)
The San Giacomo Gate used to be an entrance into Bergamo for people coming from Milan. The gates which was constructed with white marble gotten from Zandobbio’s quarries remains one of the most photographed places in Bergamo. There are so many attractions to passing through this gate such as the spectacular sight and the stories told about it.
A Taste of Bergamo
Bergamo offers a wide range of local delicacies from age-old recipes that have been passed down generations. A food tour would be in order during which you should get a taste of Bergamo cheese, salami, artisan beers, wines, mineral water, olive oil, and the local dessert.
Furthermore, a 3-hour food tour to taste indigenous meals such as Aperitivo with a glass of Valcalepio, Casoncelli – which is homemade pasta with a host of amazing ingredients, Foiade, and Polenta with lard and cheese among a number of other enticing delicacies.
Day Trips from Bergamo
Day Trip to Bergamo from Milan
Meet up with your guide and driver in Milan and then embark on a luxury 1-hour ride to Bergamo. Upon arriving at Bergamo, hop on the popular Funicular railway and get to discover all the amazing sites there are.
Continue on to Piazza Vecchia where the highest tower in Bergamo is located. There are a number of amazing structures which your guide would definitely point out to you as well.
After a lunch break, picturesque squares and alleys are up next as well as a number of well preserved historic structure. If you stay in Milan, you can easily embark on this day trip to Bergamo.
You can also take a train from Milan to Bergamo which is a duration of 1h 10m.
Venice Day trip from Bergamo
A full-day tour of Venice from Bergamo is one that you shouldn’t pass up. After a boat trip across the Venice lagoon, embark on a two-hour walk to check out this amazing city.
Important landmarks, distinct architecture, and notable locations such as St. Mark’s Square and the palace are places you should definitely check out. Next, visit the first cafe in Europe and have an espresso. You could then relax a bit by going for lunch or having a gondola ride.
From Bergamo: Verona and Sirmione Full-Day Tour
From Bergamo, take a trip to Verona where the world-known Romeo and Juliet Shakespearean theme is set. Check out the Roman arena and discover all other Renaissance structures such as the palaces as well.
Next, check out the Lake Garda and pay a visit to Simione. Walk the narrow streets of an ancient Roman summer retreat and check out features like the Roman Villa and the city wall ruins.
Where to Stay in Bergamo
Best Western Hotel Piemontese
Hotel Piemontese is located about 50m from Bergamo Train Station is a relatively short walk from the Old Town as well. It offers parking, free WiFi, 24-hour front desk as well as food and drink services. Each room also comes with its own private bathrooms and flat-screen TVs.
Hotel Excelsior San Marco
Hotel Excelsior San Marco is located in Bergamo’s central square, Piazza del Republica. Apart from being only a 2-minute from the main shopping area of Bergamo Bassa, they also have facilities such as a gym/fitness center. Each room has its own LCD TV, minibar and private bathroom. Pets are allowed and they offer parking space too.
Bergamo Inn 43
The Bergamo Inn 43 is located in close proximity to the Bergamo Bassa Funicular. The Inn offers free WiFi and each room comes with its own personal coffee making machine. Each room has a private bathroom as well as a flat-screen TV and air conditioning. They also offer parking space and pets are allowed.
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