Known for the precious marble quarried here, Zandobbio is located in a little valley at the side of the Val Cavallina. This side then carries on up to the pass at the summit of which is the sanctuary of San Giovanni delle Formiche, or St. John of the Ants, (this is the territory of the Foresto Sparso, or the Sparse Forest), which traces its origins back to Roman times.
Indeed, the town of Zandobbio was already famous in Roman times for its white dolomia stone, which was being quarried even then. Dolomia, which is actually white and pink in colour, has been used to create many works of art and architecture, both in Italy and abroad. Of these, the Angelo Mai Civic Library and Porta San Giacomo, both in Bergamo, stand out as leading examples.
Naturally, the local parish church of San Giorgio was also built using this very prized variety of marble. It was constructed in the 16th century and then restructured in the 18th century by Giovanni Battista Caniana.
Zandobbio also bears the revealing marks of mediaeval construction: for example, the layout of the town itself, which developed longitudinally and shows evidence of fortification, including a mediaeval tower situated right in the middle of town.
However, the greatest piece of architecture is the church of San Giorgio in Campis, a stone’s throw from the local cemetery, which dates from around the 11th century and despite its numerous restorations, still presents us with a structure in the Romanesque style.
Walking in the Selva district, one can visit the parish church of Sant’Anna, built in 1736. In 1960 it became the parish church by decree of the Bishop of Bergamo, thereby breaking away from that of Zandobbio.
Of particular interest:
As in the nearby municipality of Trescore Balneario, a thermal spa was also opened here in Zandobbio. Count Guido Beroa had it built and then surrounded by a park with trees that were centuries old. However, it fell into disuse over the course of the 20th century.
Municipality of Zandobbio
Area: 6.46 square kilometres
Altitude: 278 metres above sea level