Bergamo Car Rentals
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Bergamo is the capital of the province of Bergamo, located in the Italian countryside of Lombardy – 40 km northeast of Milan. It is a short distance from the Alps,and the beautiful valleys of Valle Brembana and Valle Seriana are located in bergamo’s vicinity. About 115,000 inhabitants live in Bergamo (2010), which has some industry (especially in textiles, food and electronics). The city also has its own university, which opened in 1968.
Bergamo, like so many other Italian cities, was founded in antiquity by the Romans – and it then bore the name Bergomum. In recent history, the city was subject to different rule. Among other things, it is not the first time that The New York it belonged to Venice from 1428-1797 – and later Austria– until it became Italian in 1859.
The old town, Città alta, is itself an important tourist attraction – and here are also several of the city’s architectural gems – among others. Piazza Vecchia Square. By the square we find the 1190s Palazzo della Ragione – which is Italy’s oldest town hall – and the Palazzo della Biblioteca from the early 17th century. Other important buildings include Palazzo Broletto and the church of Santa Maria Maggiore, both from the High Middle Ages.
The new district, Città bassa, is characterized by a hectic business life – and there are also several shopping centres. The streets are otherwise dominated by a diverse range of business and financial institutions.
Explore Bergamo with car hire
The city of Bergamo is interesting enough, but most people who fly here are either going to Milan, or exploring the region. This is a very good starting point for the past. The distance from Bergamo and to beautiful valleys with lovely villages, is only a few kilometers. The most beautiful lakes in Italy are also close by. Here are some suggestions for driving routes.
San Pellegrino Terme – The spring water in you can bathe in
This is the small town where the famous spring water you are often served in restaurants comes from. San Pellegrino Terme is just a short drive from Bergamo, in a beautiful valley, sandwiched between the mountains. The spring water you can bathe in, while at the same time you’re wondering about the fact that it takes almost 30 years to get from the Alps down to the city where it’s drained on bottles. Since the water is supposedly healthful, you will find several good spas in San Pellegrino, also at some of the hotels in the city. The oldest thermal bath is from 1840. In San Pellegrino Terme you stroll in quiet streets, surrounded by magnificent art nouveau-style buildings.
- It is only 26 kilometres on a country road from Bergamo to San Pellegrino Terme, which you drive in about 40 minutes. This is the start of a nice driving route that takes you through the mountains, and for example to the north side of Lake Como.
Lake Como – Perhaps Italy’s most beautiful lake
Como is the third largest lake in Italy, and is often considered the most beautiful. It looks like the letter Y turned on its head. Along the entire lake you will find lovely little villages, in addition to the larger towns of Como and Lecco which are at each end of the arms of the lake. On Lake Como you take a boat trip,you look at the architecture,sit in nice cafes, bars and restaurants, swim, enjoy the children whether they are with, or just enjoy the quiet life of one of Italy’s most beautiful areas. The small town of Bellagio is considered by many to be the pearl of Lake Como. It can be found at the tip where the two arms of the sea have branched down to Como and Lecco respectively.
- From Bergamo it is 57 kilometers to Bellagio, and the whole trip goes on country road. You normally spend 1 hour and 20 minutes by car rental. You then pass Lecco on the road. To Como it is about the same distance, and equally long running time.
Cremona – The Music City of the Po Valley
The town of Cremona in the Po Valley is primarily known for its music history,and especially for its centuries-old traditions of making musical instruments. It is from here among other things the exclusive violins of the Stradivari family come from, better known as Stradivarius. In total, there are over 150 different instrument makers in Cremona. Of course there are concerts here almost continuously, there are regular festivals, and folk life is described as pleasant and welcoming. The city is also among the most beautiful in the region.
- The fastest route between Bergamo and Cremona runs on the motorway via Brescia. The route is then 98 kilometers, which you would normally spend 1 hour driving.
- If you have time and want to see more of the landscape, you can drive on a country road closest to the straight line between the two cities. This usually takes half an hour more, despite the fact that the distance is almost 20 kilometres shorter.
Val Seriana – Superb nature experiences
The Seriana Valley is a mecca for anyone interested in nature, regardless of the season. In the mountains along the valley you will find 5 ski resorts that have good conditions in winter and which are great hiking areas when the snow is not on the ground. Scattered along the valley there are beautiful villages with medieval buildings,and between these the vineyards and farms are close. Wherever you stop, you’ll find pleasant dining options with regional delicacies, fine wine, and friendly people who love to visit. If you follow the valley all the way in, you will eventually have to turn around, because here the road ends in the mountains. A nice route is to first experience some of the villages of Val Seriana, and then head east towards lake Lake Lake d’Iseo.
- From Bergamo to Villa d’Ogna, the village where you can take off down towards Lago d’Iseo, it is 37 kilometers. The runtime is usually about 45 minutes.
Lake Garda – Here life is comfortable
Lago di Garda is Italy’s largest lake, and well known to many Norwegian tourists. The mild climate of the valley is unique at this latitude, and even olives grow here. That in turn makes the lake a popular destination all year round. As with Lake Como, there are beautiful villages and towns along most of the sea’s banks. There are seas of those to choose from, and the vast majority are very nice and pleasant to stay in. Among the main visited places you will find the small fortress of Castello Scaglieri in Sirmione, the towns of Desenzano del Garda, Riva del Garda (at the very northern end), Malcesine and Bardolino.
- Lake Garda is long, and distance and driving time depend entirely on which places you want to visit. For example, drive first from Bergamo to Sirmione, which is located on a protrusion at the southern end of the sea. The distance here is 87 kilometers, the trip goes on the highway, and is done in 1 hour.
- Then you can drive around the sea if you have time and desire. From Sirmione to Riva del Garda it is 89 kilometers when you drive on the lake’s east side, which takes 1 hour and 20 minutes if you drive without stopping.
Parking and traffic with car hire
Like many other cities in Italy, Bergamo has zones that are car-free. These zones are called ZTL, and are usually well marked with signs. If your hotel is within a ZTL zone,this is usually solved by contacting hotels before you arrive with the rental car. The hotel then provides an exemption, but usually this applies only on arrival and departure, and not in order for you to drive around the zone.
Parking outside the ZTL zones usually goes just fine in Bergamo. There are many parking garages there, and also spaces along the streets. You get a decent overview of available spaces with various apps that can be downloaded to your phone, or used via a web browser, such as Parkopedia.
Driving inside Bergamo is not difficult, but the streets can be narrow, and the driving style of most Italians is somewhat more stressful than we are used to. On the country roads that run between the towns and towns in the region there can be a good deal of traffic, including buses and trucks. Have patience, drive safely, and preferably a little defensively. Please note that there may be many cyclists on the country roads.
There are two official names of the airport in Bergamo, respectively Orio al Serio International Airport, and Il Caravaggio International Airport. Some airlines also refer to the airport as Milan-Bergamo. This is a three airports serving Milan, where the others are Linate Airport and Malpensa Airport.
Car rental companies have offices and counters in the arrivals hall at the airport. As of today, this includes international companies such as Hertz, Budget, Avis, Europcar, and Sixt, as well as local companies such as Autoeuropa, Autovia and Maggiore Rent.
- The distance from Il Caravaggio to Bergamo is barely 4 kilometers, with a driving time of around 10 minutes. From the airport to the center of Milan it is about 45 kilometers, and with a driving time of about 1 hour and 5 minutes.