Is Bergamo safe to visit? A comprehensive safety guide
Right at the base of the Italian Alps, you'll find the beautiful city of Bergamo. Many people end up flying into one of the Bergamo airports and continuing on to better known cities like Venice, Verona, Rome, Lake Como or Milan without knowing what this city has to offer. Bergamo is Italy's hidden gem and is well organized with plenty of medieval attractions in the Upper Town, also known as the Citta Alta, like the 16th century walls (which were never conquered) or the Colleoni Chapel. In the Lower City, or Citta Bassa, you'll find more modern and equally as interesting attractions.
Although Bergamo isn't the most popular Italian town it can still easily see over 2 million tourists in a year. There is a peak in tourism between July and October which means that the tourist attractions and overall city will be busier, and it is quietest between the months of January and March. Currently, the city is home to a bit over 900,000 citizens.
If you're someone who likes to travel often, you'll know about Bounce luggage storage in Bergamo. Bounce can store bags of any size and has a customer support team available 24/7. Why carry more than you have to when touring a city?
Is Bergamo safe to visit right now?
Before going on a vacation anywhere you should research the travel advisories for your destination in order to see if it is safe or not. Right now you can consider Italy a safe place to travel to as there are no restrictions in place. It is also good practice to look at the advisories suggested by your own government before booking a trip. According to the 2021 Global Peace Index, Italy is the 32nd safest country which makes it a very good place to go on vacation.
No matter how safe a country is said to be, there will still be crime of some sort. In Bergamo, you'll have to be particularly careful of scams and petty theft, but as long as you take the necessary precautions and use common sense it is easy enough to avoid them. We'll do our best to tell you about all of the Bergamo safety tips that you might need, but some other safety guides might be able to give you some valuable information as well.
Top petty crimes and scams in Bergamo affecting tourists
Keep reading to find out more about the most common types of crime that tourists experience in Bergamo. The more that you know about them, the easier it will be for you to avoid them.
Scams are very common in many Italian cities, and it is no surprise that they can be found in Bergamo as well. A common strategy that scammers like to do is to try selling you jewelry, like a gold ring, and putting it on you to convince you to purchase it. But once it is on your finger it will be very difficult to take off, forcing you to buy it.
As a tourist, you might also be targeted by fake petitions, and should not always trust the advice or recommendations given to you by locals. In some cases, scammers will try to point foreigners toward restaurants or activities that will purposefully overcharge people who aren't familiar with the town.
When it comes to tourist destinations, scammers and pickpockets often come hand in hand. Although Bergamo is not particularly famous for tourism you'll find petty thieves in most of the other Italian cities, and it is good to be on the lookout for them here as well. As a general rule, you should leave your expensive items in a luggage locker and try to not carry any items like wallets or smartphones in your pants pocket since it is surprisingly easy for pickpockets to take them without you noticing.
Instead, use a money belt or have a secure, slash-proof bag that preferably goes across your body as opposed to over your shoulder. You'll need to be most careful in crowded places and tourist attractions, like the Basilica Papale di Santa Maria Maggiore or Bergamo's cathedral, the Duomo di Bergamo.
Not only will you have to be careful of your belongings being carried on you, but you should also avoid leaving any valuable items inside of your car since break-ins are not unheard of. Of course, if you're not driving yourself around then this might not be a problem for you, but if you do like the freedom of having your own means of transportation then it is something that you'll have to consider.
Just make sure to always lock your car doors when leaving it parked somewhere, and avoid parking in some areas entirely. Remember that the absolute safest place for your valuables is with Bounce where they are being watched and can't be stolen.
Is Bergamo safe to travel alone
Bergamo is a generally safe city and there is no reason to think that it would be unsafe for solo travel, as long as you use common sense and are careful. Remember that safety is unique to the individual, and as long as you don't put yourself in any unsafe situations you should have no issues traveling here alone. However, you'll always have to be a bit more careful when you're somewhere new by yourself as opposed to with a group.
As always, it is advised to stay away from dark and deserted streets at night and to instead try to stick close to busier areas that have shops, restaurants, hotels, and generally more people around in case you need help. If you're a woman who likes to vacation by yourself you should consult the Bounce Women Travel Safety Index for information about whether a country is safe for you. Italy is a great place to go since it is ranked 23rd.
Safest neighborhoods in Bergamo
Bergamo is a wonderful place to explore, but the truth is that not every neighborhood is ideal to visit. Here are a couple of areas that are safe making them great places for day trips, or to even sleep in if you're staying overnight.
For the complete Bergamo experience, we recommend staying in the Lower City, or Citta Bassa. This is the more modern part of the town centre complete with art museums, shopping destinations, performance art venues and much more.
Borgo Santa Caterina
This neighborhood is known to be the nightlife district of the city and is the perfect place for party-goers to visit. As long as you don't drink too much and are careful about getting home it is a perfectly safe place to be.
To get the best of both worlds when visiting Bergamo, consider staying in Borgo Pignolo. This lovely neighborhood is found right between the old town and upper town giving you full access to both kinds of attractions. It is a marvelous place for people watching, too.
Just like there are safe places in Bergamo, there are also more dangerous spots and you should be cautious when venturing into the surrounding area of the city centre. There are no particular neighborhoods that stand out as unsafe, but you should try to avoid walking around by yourself at night and be more careful around public transport hubs like the Bergamo railway station. Trust your gut if you ever get a bad feeling about an area, and the safest thing to do is to remain close to the popular attractions that are known to be safe for tourists.
Is Bergamo public transportation safe?
With charming cobbled streets and unique architecture, you might find that using a bike is the best way to get around this medieval city. You'll just need to be careful when crossing streets and always lock up your bike when leaving it unattended. The bus, train and funicular services are also useful when making your way between towns and they are not known to be unsafe at all, aside from the pickpocketing problem that we mentioned earlier.
When you visit Bergamo or any other town in Northern Italy, or other cities across Europe for that matter, you should always be on guard when waiting at a train station or bus stop. Be wary of strangers who approach you or try to distract you since they could be trying to steal your things. If you don't feel comfortable using public transit at night or are traveling a far distance, taxis can be used to get around safely.
Important emergency numbers in Bergamo
You never know what could happen when exploring a new place, and it is a good idea to know who you can call in an emergency. Keep these numbers, as well as your embassy number, somewhere handy when you're in Italy.
- Emergency Police, Fire, Ambulance: 112
- Non-Emergency Police: 113
- Fire Department: 115
- Ambulance: 118
Exploring Bergamo, Italy, safely
Although it is often overshadowed by more famous cities, Bergamo has been gaining more recognition as a tourist destination in recent years. The next time that you're traveling to Northern Italy, add Bergamo to your itinerary.
This stunning city found by the Alpine foothills is different from any other place around the world, and now that you know how to be safe here you're ready to book a flight to the Bergamo airport. If you want to get even more familiar with the layout of the city try reading up on Where to Stay in Bergamo: The Ultimate Guide and How to Get Around Bergamo.