We’ve put together a bucket list of our favorite experiences and activities in Bassano that our town offers to tourists and locals. Share the ones you find out about at #aDayinBassano
For some in-depth travel companion, download our Insider’s travel guide to Bassano del Grappa
Bassano del Grappa Bridge, or the symbol of the city is the “Ponte Vecchio”. Crossing river Brenta. Bassano del Grappa bridge has been redesigned and fixed multiple times throughout history from its first appearance in the 13th century. The current structure carries the signature of visionary renaissance designer Andrea Palladio (1508 – 1580) and is made entirely of wood. It is renewed as an engineering masterpiece hard to replicate even with today’s technology. In fact, in the recent years engineers trying to do maintenance works on Bassano del Grappa Bridge have faced difficulties in fixing it due to specific wood types hard to find, and complex design of the structure. At any rate the Ponte Vecchio, or Old Bridge, which was rebuilt many times, continues to host locals and visitors that enjoy the view from its sides and remains the main landmark of Bassano.
The bridge in Bassano del Grappa is also named “Ponte degli Alpini”, after the valorous Alpini corp, who fought in WW1 on the mountains surrounding Bassano such as Monte Grappa, securing decisive victories against the Austro-Hungarian Empire on the Italian battles witnessed by Ernest Hemingway, whose stay in Bassano is documented at the local Hemingway Museum.
Every visit to Bassano del Grappa usually starts with a promenade through the Ponte Vecchio, where tourists usually stop to take pictures at the breathtaking panorama on the mountains or to shop for craft products in the nearby joints, making a visit to this attraction one of the best things to do in Bassano. Don’t miss the chance to explore the river banks close to the bridge on both sides which offer a romantic walk away from the hustle and bustle of the city center and take your best instagram pictures.
At the eastern end of the bridge, locals gather for happy hour at Nardini, Italy’s oldest distillery dating back to 1779 and still serving drinks in the retro atmosphere of the original laboratory. Here you are supposed to order a round of “mezzo e mezzo” which is the bitter house specialty, or an “acqua di Cedro” or cider water, besides the extensive spirits options. A few steps ahead, Nardini’s competitor Poli has its free entry Grappa Museum where you can smell and test virtually unlimited Grappa kinds.
In the colonnade between the two main piazzas, the Beltrame family runs its “Bottega del Pane”. In this vintage bakery, every product is of outstanding quality, but it is because of its iconic “pizzetta”, or tiny pizza, that the shop attracts costumers from Bassano and the surrounding towns.
The ingredients that make this Italian street food so irresistible are kept secret, what is well knows is that in very little time you will become addicted to it and the staff will start knowing you by your name.
Bassano nightlife is vibrant and lively and the city offers interesting going out options for audiences of all ages and preferences. Various bars and hangouts are scattered all over the historical center and offer unique experiences in curated context in the best Italian tradition. Recently opened Palazzo delle Misture, for example, builds a consistent fin-de-siecle vibe by matching the retro design of the interiors with exotic cocktails inspired by last century’s cultural avant-garde. For 20 and 30 somethings, King of Bassano nightlife Leon bar, on the other hand, is the go-to bar for starting your nights out in Bassano. Officina del Gusto is the bar of choice of Bassano nightlife indie and hipsters. Osterias, beer gardens, and trendy spots are valid options. As usual, asking the locals recommendations on what’s going on tonight is the best things to do in Bassano‘s evening.
In regards of restaurant, the nightlife of Bassano also has much to offer, with options ranging from experimental fusion joints such as, our personal best restaurant in Bassano Del Grappa, HisYou, to more traditional Italian restaurants like Ottone and fresh, hip eateries like Nardini Garage. Finding good restaurants in Bassano is not hard: there are virtually no tourist traps, quality of food is in generally high and even the surrounding towns have interesting restaurants to offer, such as industrial-style space Habitat Bistrot.
For those looking for some extra luxury fine dining experience, l’Impronta restaurant might be the fanciest in town, with its curated interiors and top-notch experience.
When going out in Italy, remember that the maximum limit of alcohol concentration in blood for driving is 0,5 and police might perform checks resulting in fines. At any rate, after your nights out avoid driving after drinking. The best option is to find a comfortable accommodation in the center of Bassano such as Relais nel Castello, and roam the city by foot without too much worry.
Bassano del Grappa events include poetry, literature, outdoor sports, motorsport and much more. The city is home to a vibrant cultural life and something is always happing, from the Christmas markets during the winter seasons, to many business related trade shows and meeting as well as Music Festivals such as AMA. – gathering some of the country’s most famous musical acts in town in the month of September.
Opera Estate is, of all Bassano del Grappa events, the most interesting one, as it offers an extensive program of cultural roundtables, meeting with writers, theatre and performances during the whole summer, including our favourite open air cinema program at the botanical gardens. The Parolini Gardens are a botanical park and public green space given to the city by its nineteenth-century nobility. They are now the theater of the traditional summertime cinema festival part of the Opera Estate program, where a series of selected movies from renowned and emerging directors are shown in this amazing natural environment. If you already understand some Italian and are looking for chances to improve your language skills, a movie in the garden is definitely one of the best activities in Bassano del Grappa.
Recently, every Wednesday of the month of July, the city organises a “Notte Bianca” or white night, a format present in many Italian cities where shops remain open in the evening and the town offers dances and shows in its streets, attracting visitors and party people from the surrounding area. at the local expo center different trade and amateur shows are specific for the most nice interest and even street food festival is happening once a year. Make sure to do an accurate planning before hand to make the best of Bassano del Grappa events and not miss anything.
Shopping in Bassano del Grappa and its surroundings you can find a variety of boutiques with design and signature clothing items, as well as grocery shops where to buy the best of Italian food products only available here. Various stores are to be located in the city center, according to Italy’s tradition of preferring street retail outlets over big malls, and unique, single store boutiques over large chains with thousands of stores. Shopping in Bassano is interesting for trendspotters and fashionistas looking for the latest Italian fashion items, which can be purchased at high-end store Cenere, famous for its avantgardish windows, or its competitor Sear’s, selecting the best clothes including the ones from local star designers such as Italian shirt manufacturer Xacus.
For unique, local souvenirs and music records, dischi ponte is the best place, starting as a vynil shop, the store located on the western bank of the wooden bridge sells item branded with the Alpini, the city’s iconic mountain fighters of WWI, including the Bialetti moka express Alpina coffee maker.
If the weather is not collaborative, a 5 minutes taxi ride will take you to the newly opened Grifone Mall: the city’s shopping center where you can spend the afternoon and buy souvenirs. Grifone includes a large underground parking and a selection of stores including a grocery hypermarket, tech and home appliances store MediaWorld and affordable fashion, cosmetics and Pret-a-porter shops.
A trip to Italy, however, should include at least a visit to a grocery retailer. In Italian supermarkets you can find the most qualitative food items that the demanding Italian consumers put on their tables every day: shopping in Bassano is the chance to get your hands on the best coffee, wine, pasta, cold cuts, cheese and a variety of other foods rarely distributed elsewhere, to surprise your friends back home. Italy’s most renowned supermarkets chains are Coop and Conad. Our recommendation is to go for some prosciutto with local breadsticks from brand Bibanesi.
Visit Veneto Region as the one attracting the most tourists out of all 20 regions in Italy, Veneto, or “the region of Venice” as it is lately being branded, is more than its famous capital: this territory stretching on the North-East of the peninsula is easy to reach by car, train, bus or flight from virtually anywhere and has much to offer, from ski resorts to some of the best beach resorts in Europe.
Did you know that Bassano del Grappa area is Europe’s best for paragliding? A few minutes of a drive outside of the city center will allow you to visit Veneto Region and the beautiful mountain chain, including Mount Grappa, which from its 1775 meters above sea level offers moon-like landscapes, untouched nature and traditional high altitude inns serving homemade cheese and cold cuts. If you like spending some time in retreat in the mountains, to rent a cabin in Italy and go hiking might be the best thing to do. When you visit Veneto region, Bassano and its surroundings, you can truly enjoy nature and some of the best outdoor experiences in the country.
Veneto is one of the most unique regions of Italy, it spreads between the mountain peaks of the Alps to the Venice lagoon offering diverse landscapes and a multitude of national parks and natural attractions. Bassano del Grappa is located just a short ride away from major skiing resorts such as Cortina and San Martino di Castrozza which makes it a great starting point for any skiing trip in Italy. From its strategic position you can reach all of this territory’s attractions in a matter of minutes, from the alp vibe of the Asiago plateau, to the hip clubs of Jesolo in the Adriatic Riviera, Veneto offers much to visitors of all ages and preferences.
Wine tourism is definitely the best sport to practice in Veneto. Hundreds of producers are eager to let you taste their wine, hoping to sell you some few bottles to carry home.
One can spend the best moments of a holiday simply strolling by car, gently, towards the best Italian landscapes, searching for some “osteria” and wine producer, intentionally losing direction.
Some hints? Montello hill for reds, Asolo and Valdobbiadene for prosecco.
The train station allows you to visit other Italian cities in all comfort. Located in a strategical position, Bassano is just on hour away from Venice and Vincenza, reasonable train changes will get you to Verona, Milan, Bologna, you name it. Staying in this town enables you to visit all of Italy’s northeast without too much planning: Just wake up early and decide where you want to go. If you are looking for inspiration, check the website www.veneto360.land
The Ezzelini castle carries the name of the powerful family that used to rule the city and its surrounding lands during medieval times, the walls of the castle and its tower are still part of the city today.
If you are looking to rent an apartment in Bassano del Grappa you should consider staying in this tower for an unique, time warping experience: at “Relais nel Castello” you find a unique apartment embedded in a middle age castle. The flat has design interiors and a stunning view of the mountains from the tiny windows. We are confident staying there will be the cherry on the cake of your holiday
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Want to find out more on the best things to do in Bassano? don’t forget to check our Insider’s Travel Guide to Bassano del Grappa