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A highly visible symbol of power, the Castle of San Vigilio was for centuries the residence of the various rulers who succeeded one another in Bergamo.
Located 496 meters high on the hill that gives it its name, it overlooks the Upper City, which is why in the past it played a strategic role in case of enemy attacks.
From its top in fact you can see the nearby Mount Bastia and the underlying villages of the ancient Val Breno (today called Valbrembo and Paladina), the esplanade of Almenno, known as Lemine, once an area of great commercial importance, and the villages located along the road leading to the entrance of Val Brembana.
This panorama, as spectacular as it is endless, embraces a large part of the Pre-Alps. Very suggestive is the plan of the building that recalls the shape of a star, with four annexed towers called Castagneta, Belvedere, Del Ponte and San Vigilio.
Its underground passages are also very articulated: it has been found a tunnel, partly passable, which connects the castle directly with the northern part of the wall of the hills, inside the Fort San Marco.
The Castle later became the property of the Municipality of Bergamo, which opened it to the public in 1962, while the funicular, which had been at a standstill since 1976, was restored in 1991.
At present you can still visit the secret passage that connected the Fort of San Marco with the castle itself, thanks to the activity of the speleological group Le Nottole, who provide guided tours by reservation.