Bergamo is an Italian city located in northern Italy, just 45km far away from Milan, and it is very well connected with the rest of Europe through highways, railways and the airport “Il Caravaggio”, which is only 5 kilometers away from the city center.
The name comes from the Greek world: Pèrgamon, which means “fortified houses on top of a hill”, this is because the city has a Upper Town surrounded by 7 km of walls built in second half of the 16th century by the Serenissima Republic of Venice to defend the city, the walls are candidated to the World Heritage List of UNESCO.
Bergamo been defined as one of the most beautiful fortified cities of Italy.
Bergamo is also called “Città dei Mille” (City of the Thousand) for the high number of Bergamo’s volunteers who participated to the expedition of the Thousand leaded by Garibaldi against the Army of the Two Sicilies during the period of the unification of Italy.
In Bergamo and in its suburbs, you can find art, nature and culture: there are many parks, enchanting places to stay, nature reserves, spas, ski areas, the picturesque shores of lakes and rivers. Long story short: this place is plenty of things to do and places to see.
The Lower City that has been modernized over the years and there you can visit: the Donizetti Theatre, dedicated to the great composer from Bergamo whose works are still performed in theaters around the world; academies and art galleries, such as the famous Accademia Carrara, with large collections of paintings including Botticelli, Raffaello, Tiziano, Kandinsky and many other artists.
Also the lower part is a lively financial, industrial and administrative centre of national importance hosting international well known companies like Fassi Group, Brembo Brakes, Tenaris Dalmine, Gewiss, Italcementi; Bergamo and its hinterland are one of the ten most industrialized European areas.
To access the Upper Town, in addition to taxis, buses, numerous stairs and a scenic trail lasting about ten minutes, you can take the funicular, created in 1887 and thanks to which you can pass through the Venetian walls and get to the heart of the medieval part of Bergamo, right into one of the many historic squares of the upper town.
Walking through its long narrow streets you can get to Old Town Square in the center of which is the Contarini fountain which is framed, on the south part, by Palazzo della Ragione: the oldest town hall of Italy (end XXII century); on south-west the Civic Tower called “The Campanone”, whose bell at 22 everyday beats 100 strokes, that years ago pointed to the closure of the gates of the Venetian walls; and on north-east is located the Palazzo Nuovo, better known as the Angelo Maj Library.
In addition to the universities on the whole territory of Bergamo, in the Upper Town is placed the university’s Faculty of Foreign Languages and Literatures whose prestige is recognized all around Europe.
In short, if you have not visited Bergamo yet you really have to come for a visit!