When it comes to Bergamo one always thinks about its city walls, Piazza Vecchia, Porta Nuova, the Sentierone. However, there is also another Bergamo, and another province, much less known. Its the one we walk on.

To get to know it, first we have to reach… the sea!
Or look down at the ground. 300 million years ago, the province of Bergamo was submerged by a primordial sea that left its traces in the fossils, ubiquitous throughout the pre-Alps, but also in the sediments turned into stone that we see every day.
Sandstone, for example, one of the most used in classic building, but still often used today, is a legacy of ancient seas that expanding and retreating, gradually layered sands and debris. These solidified thanks to a gradual compression.

The Palazzo della Ragione, Santa Maria Maggiore, and the Mura (the city walls) are built of this mineral. But the modern homes with natural stone walls are also built using sandstone, of which Sarnico and Credaro are the most well known types.

Rocks and stones. Seemingly insignificant, they are instead precious relics of our geological history and very important raw materials.
From the massifs to the finest sands, they all have a genuinly interesting story to tell, and their story may change our point of view concerning those materials that have always been considered the most humble. And we’ll have a greater awareness of our area, which maybe we have considered only in terms of landscape, until now.

Perhaps we never thought about it, but it is thanks to rocks, pebbles and sand that we can live in cities and comfortable homes, travel on roads, cross bridges, terrace hillsides, create river embankments…
It is thanks to the Earth’s legacy that we could make all that has been built.

Two million years ago man began to build his first stone tools and his first shelters. Since then, rocks have always been a fundamental raw material for our evolution.
They’re used for the most humble purposes, like plaster, streets, squares, but also for the most noble, like the facades of palaces and churches, monuments, houses and all kinds of buildings.
Our province is rich in valuable building materials; the Galletti collection, at the Museum of Natural Sciences in Cittadella, exhibits 160 samples of decorative stones, all from the Bergamo area.

In short, from now on, if you happen to go for a nice walk in the mountains or on the banks of rivers and lakes, don’t just watch the scenery, but also… keep an eye on the ground!
… At every step, you’ll be stunned!