Bergamo’s beautiful upper town, the Città Alta (pictured above), is a magical place well worth visiting. Use this website to help you plan your trip to Bergamo in Northern Italy and find your way to some of the other lovely towns and villages in Lombardia that are perhaps less well known to tourists.


A funicular ride into another age

An interesting way to travel to the Citta Alta is on the funicular railway, built 120 years ago, that climbs up from Viale Vittorio Emanuele. You can admire the solid city walls and the view of the Citta Bassa on your way up.
The funicular arrives in Piazza Mercato delle Scarpe and on leaving the station you feel as though you are stepping back in time.
Città Alta alternates narrow, medieval alleyways with bright open spaces and the route along Via Gombito and Via Colleoni, two of the main streets, is a good example of this.
Via Gombito leads to Piazza Vecchia, for centuries the political and administrative heart of Bergamo. It was rebuilt in the fifteenth century and there is a lot to see in this beautiful square, including the fountain in the middle, donated by the Venetian Alvise Contarini and the civic tower and the Palazzo della Ragione at one end, that date back to the twelfth century. At the other end of the square there in the elegant white marble civic library, which was built in the seventeenth century as a new town hall.
Beyond the loggia of the municipal building is another square, Piazza del Duomo, which is bordered by the Cathedral, the Baptistery, the Colleoni Chapel where the famous condottiere Bartolomeo Colleoni is entombed, and the Basilica of Santa Maria Maggiore, whose ornate baroque interior houses fourteenth century frescoes, marquetry panels created from drawings by Lorenzo Lotto, Flemish and Florentine tapestries and the tomb of composer Gaetano Donizetti.
The Via Colleoni is lined with shops, bars and restaurants and leads to the Piazza Mascheroni, which was built in the sixteenth century to hold the city’s market. An archway leads into the courtyard of the Cittadella, which takes you out to the Colle Aperto, where there are magnificent views of Citta Bassa below and the hills high above.

Traditional transport link still popular

ATB (Azienda Trasporti Bergamo) operates the funicular, which runs every few minutes, connecting the Citta Alta with the Citta Bassa.
The idea first came about in 1887, to save the Citta Alta from isolation and economic depression. The funicular has been updated several times since, but it remains the most popular means for local people and visitors to reach the upper town from the lower.
To use it, travellers have to buy a ticket and pass it through the machine at the barrier before boarding.
It is possible to buy a 24 hour bus ticket that includes use of the funicular, which is handy for tourists.
For more information, contact ATB Point, Largo Porta Nuova, Bergamo, telephone 035.236.026 or,

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