BASSANO DEL GRAPPA – the river Brenta and the Old Bridge


What to see in Bassano del Grappa, a small guide in order to not miss any place of interest/attraction

 “On Bassano bridge we’ll shake hands,

we’ll shake hands and share a lovers’ kiss”

Alpine folk song, 1916

Bassano del Grappa provokes love at first sight: in a picturesque setting between the banks of the river Brenta and Monte Grappa, Bassano offers its visitors a full experience that includes culinary traditions, crafts, history – particularly that of the Great War – and sport.

What to see in Bassano del Grappa

It’s impossible to feel bored once you reach the historic centre of Bassano del Grappa, one of the most lively and popular towns in the Veneto region: every corner here is bursting with life.

We recommend not to miss the following attractions in the streets of the town centre:

  • The Old Bridge, or Bridge of the Alpini: a national monument since June 2019 and a true symbol of Bassano del Grappa. Designed by Andrea Palladio, it preserves a history of wounds, downfall, courage and rebirth. Strolling across this bridge you retrace the history of the town.
  • Museum of the Alpini: Started during the reconstruction of the Old Bridge in 1948 and inaugurated in 1950, it is located at the northern end of the bridge. It is a small but important museum that preserves exhibits of the wars and the resistance from excavations on the Grappa massif and the Asiago plateau and from donations. It is a moving testimony to life in the trenches, portraying the sacrifice of many young victims;
  • The Hemingway Museum: located in villa Ca ‘Erizzo, residence in 1918 of one of the ambulance sections of the American Red Cross, which included the young Ernest Hemingway, the museum consists of 5 large exhibition rooms presenting the stages of the conflict and the participation of the United States in the First World War.
  • Poli Grappa Museum: very close to the Ponte Vecchio, this museum presents the history of distillation and of grappa, as well as the ancient tradition of the Poli distilleries. Admission is free and the visit ends in a shop where you can buy all types of grappa.
  • Viale dei Martiri: the tragic end of 31 young partisan soldiers, hanged on 26 September 1944 in this avenue by the German army after a round-up on Monte Grappa. Each tree bears the name of one of these young men and the trees are clipped in a shape resembling their helmets;
  • Alta Via del Tabacco: a beautiful nature trail starts at the Old Bridge and passes along the ancient tobacco road through the Brenta Valley. The trail, if followed in its entirely, is a 12-km circuit.
  • Grapperia Nardini: no visit to Bassano is complete without a Mezzo e Mezzo, the aperitif liqueur made with rhubarb. Nardini, one of the oldest distilleries in Italy, is a genuine institution in the town.
  • Prato Santa Caterina and Giardini Parolini: in Bassano you can also enjoy a few hours strolling through the greenery of the town’s two main parks. Calm is the key word here.
  • Palazzo Sturm, with a scenic viewpoint offering an incomparable panorama of the Brenta river and the Old Bridge. The building houses the Giuseppe Roi Ceramics Museum, featuring collections of ancient ceramics, and the Remondini Printing Museum, dedicated to the printing and engraving of the famous entrepreneurial publishing family. The Remondini, a dynasty from Bassano, founded what can be considered the first worldwide picture corporation. It was an industrial giant that made its fortune between the seventeenth and nineteenth centuries, focusing on originality, quality and exports. Their engravings provided iconographic models that helped give an almost universal visual image to stories and places and even to worship.
  • Civic Museum of Bassano del Grappa: Housed in the former convent of the Franciscan friars, it is one of the oldest museums in Veneto and its first art collections date back to 1840, when it stood beside the gymnasium, the boarding school and the library in the convent grounds. The Civic Museum houses the largest collection of works by Jacopo Bassano and his prolific studio. It produced three generations of painters who left their mark on the history of Italian art and made Bassano a production centre of artistic excellence at the turn of the sixteenth century. Just a few metres beyond these paintings you’ll find the wing dedicated to Antonio Canova, where the main attraction, among the plaster casts and busts, are his monochromes. These drawings on canvas, with just few lines and simple backgrounds, are the finest examples of his artistic expression;