|Christmas treats on display|
Bergamo is a great location to choose for a pre-Christmas break as there is a wide range of shops and you can go home with some interesting presents.
In the Città Bassa (lower town) there are large department stores as well as specialist shops, while in the Città Alta (upper town) there are plenty of individual shops selling unique items.
Traditional Italian Christmas delicacies make good presents, such as panettone and pan d’oro (Christmas cakes) in their elegant cardboard boxes. There are also torrone, a type of nougat that is a speciality from nearby Cremona, the rich flat fruit cake panforte di Siena, and many types of biscuits that are specialities from different parts of Italy .
A good place to look for presents is the Paneficio in Porta Nuova in the Città Bassa, which is well stocked with cakes, biscuits and chocolates from all over Italy ,
For wine, marinated vegetables, oils and vinegars look in the Billa supermarket on the lower floor of Oviesse in Via Gerolamo Tiraboschi near Porta Nuova.
In the Città Alta there are interesting food and wine shops in both Via Gombito and Via Colleoni where you will see a tempting array of cakes, biscuits, wine and fresh pasta to take home with you.
There are also some small fashion shops where you may find unusual Italian knitwear and leather goods.
Books and calendars always make good Christmas presents and there are shops selling them in Via Colleoni and Piazza Vecchia in the Città Alta and in Via XX Settembre in the Città Bassa.
Towards the end of the day, when shopping gets too much for you, visit one of the bars advertising ‘happy hour’, where for the price of a glass of wine you will also be able to sample the sandwiches, pastries, pizza and pasta from the buffet, which tends to be set up at around five pm. Salute e Buon Appetito!