Bergamo, Upper Bergamo and Lower Bergamo
You can start sight-seeing Bergamo from the Church of St. Alexander in Colonna (Chiesa di San Alessandro in Colonna), in Lower Bergamo’s centre. The column in the churchyard reminds of the demolition of the previous Cathedral of the 4th century dedicated to the patron saint of the city. Heart of Bergamo is via Sentierone, which was built by the merchants of Bergamo in 1620. Not far from here you will run into the monument dedicated to Gaetano Doninzetti, a composer from Bergamo. At the end of the same street, Sentierone, stands the Baroque façade of the church, Chiesa di S. Bartolomeo.
Eastwards, Chiesa di San Bernardino in Pignolo, is a church built at the end of the 15th century encompassing a beautiful altar piece by Lorenzo Lotto. Within walking distance there are the ancient academy ‘Accademia Carrara’ as well as the modern art gallery ‘Galleria d’Arte Moderna’, where works by great artists as Morandi, De Chirico, Kandinsky e Manzù are preserved. If you take the funicular you can get to the Upper Town where you can start your sight-seeing tour from the Chiesa di Sant’Alessandro della Croce, a church full of precious works of art. From the former 13th-century Monastery of St. Augustine (Monastero di Sant’Agostino), which includes the church and two cloisters, you can walk almost all the way along the walls crossing Viale delle Mura. The fortress (La Rocca), towers above the city. Standing on the St. Eufemia Hill (Colle Sant’Eufemia), it was started by Giovanni di Boemia and completed by the Visconti family in the 14th century. Piazza Vecchia, the old square in the heart of the city, was inaugurated in 1440 by the Venetians. Palazzo della Ragione, truly a treasure of the Romanesque architecture, overlooks it. If you then walk through a loggia you will get to Piazza Duomo, where a basilica started in the first half of the 15th century stands. The chapel of the Renaissance Colleoni Chapel (Cappella Colleoni), which leans against the cathedral, is the mausoleum where the bodies of Bartolomeo Colleoni and his daughter Medea are buried. On the same square stands the Romanesque Major Basilica of St. Mary (Basilica di Santa Maria Maggiore), which was started in1137. It is regarded as the best monument of Bergamo. Its octagonal-shaped Baptistery dates back to 1340. On the Colle San Giovanni, a nearby hill, stands Cittadella, which was built by Bernabò Visconti in the 14th century. If you leave the Upper Town you can walk through the suggestive landscape of Bergamo Hills Regional Natural Park (Parco Naturale Regionale Colli di Bergamo).