Bergamo

Bergamo, which is built on two levels, is a very important tourist attraction. The lower town is modern and dynamic, the upper town is a gem of historic and artistic interest. Bergamo offers a unique blend of man's inventiveness and nature's bounty.

The Province of Bergamo encompasses two entirely different natural settings, the Po plain and the Alpine chain. Here the pre-Alps offer magnificent landscapes, where rivers and streams have gouged valleys in which nature is still entirely unspoilt. Lower down,  medieval villages dot the Val Cavallina mountains surrounding Lake Endine, higher up come the majestic peaks of Val Seriana and Val di Scalve.

To the south of the town, between mountains and plain, gently rolling hills offer spectacular views with their attractive contours and carefully tended fields. The main asset of the plain is the Po river catchment basin and the vast network of rivers that criss-cross the land. The beneficial effects of so many waterways are second only to those of Lake Iseo, with its mild climate that carpets the hills lush vegetation.

A combination of skilled craftsmanship and a delightful landscape has brought widespread renown to the whole province. It is rich in architectural masterpieces, such as Piazza Vecchia, the ancient basilica of Santa Maria Maggiore and the Colleoni Chapel in the Upper Town, and also spectacular natural attractions such as the 315m series of waterfalls along the river Serio, which can be viewed five times a year, when the sluice in the dam above Valbondione is opened. Not to mention the numerous medieval installations erected due to the strategic importance of this area in past centuries.

The Bergamo area has been a cultural crossroad since ancient times, when it was a border area between the Duchy of Milan and the Republic of Venice - even  the smallest village has its own artistic treasures.  The Rocca in Bergamo, built in the 14th century on the Sant'Eufemia hill, Gorle castle, dating back to the 13th century, and the imposing 15th century at Castelli Calepio are just some of the many monuments around which the history of the entire region has developed.

A background with a strong religious and spiritual component, giving rise to one of Italy's richest historic, artistic and cultural legacies. This immense heritage includes the majestic 15th century sanctuary in Caravaggio, the Basilica of San Giacomo in Pontida, with its 12th century Benedictine monastery and the sanctuary of Madonna Cornabusa, built inside an enormous cave in the Imagna valley and still visited by pilgrims from all over the world.