Bergamo is Città Alta (Upper Town)
Bergamo’s upper town (Città Alta) represents the birthplace and most ancient heart of the whole city, which still maintains its medieval feel: here art, culture, history and nature combine to create a truly historic atmosphere. Better still all the highlights of this historical district can be seen in a few hours on foot.
How to get there?
Città Alta is very accessible either take the quaint funicular or go by foot along the tree-lined boulevard of the Walls, or take a bus.
For walking enthusiasts, a number of traditional “stairways”, once used by the peasants, offer yet another way to access Città Alta.
What can I see in Città Alta?
Città Alta is the place where the Celts established the first settlement of Berg-heim, and strolling along the narrow lanes of the old city you will discover the history, architecture and traditions of the city. During the tour we’ll visit Piazza Vecchia, the drawing room of upper Bergamo, at the centre of which there’s the Contarini Fountain. The square is surrounded by beautiful palaces: Palazzo della Ragione also called Palazzo Vecchio (Bergamo’s first town hall built in the 12th century), the Podestà Palace, house of the governor sent by Venice to rule the city and the white marble Public Library A. May. Piazza Vecchia is dominated by the 12th century Civic Tower, affectionately known as Campanone for the giant bell housed on top of it.
A few steps further and we’ll be in Piazza Duomo overlooked by the most important religious buildings of Bergamo: the Cathedral dedicated to the patron Saint Alexander, the magnificent Basilica of Santa Maria Maggiore, the lush renaissance funerary Colleoni Chapel, where the famous Lord of war , Colleoni, is buried.
Then we’ll make our way to the Convent of San Francis and the Rocca, the 1300s fortress built by the Visconti.
To cap our visit we’ll reach, by funicular or on foot, the top of San Vigilio hill with its Castle. From here we can enjoy a beautiful view of the Città Alta.
Why do I suggest a tour of Città Alta (the upper town)?
“I have always Bergamo, alpine city of Italy, in front of my eyes”
Francesco Petrarca 1359
“Enchanting and of superb beauty”
“The most beautiful place on earth, and the most wonderful I’ve ever seen”
H. Stendhal 1831
Now, as in the times past, the traveller who has a chance to visit Bergamo’s upper town can’t but be impressed by such a fascinating place, full of harmony and beauty.
Narrow streets, ancient stones, stark towers, lush squares and gushing fountains let’s you relive the past, and creates an atmosphere impossible to reproduce in modern cities.
But Città Alta is also a lively place, where you can find plenty of craft shops, deli stores and restaurants that offer the delicious local cuisine.
And… sitting in the open air in, arguably, one of the most beautiful squares in all Italy you can relax and drink in the atmosphere a good glass of red Valcalepio!
- Every itinerary can be tailor made and modified according to the customer needs
- Private transport on request.