Lombardy Villages
Lombardy Villages


Valeggio sul Mincio and Borghetto are located on the border between Veneto and Lombardy. Also in this last region there are other places not to be missed

Most Beautiful Italian Villages, in Lombardy

Valeggio sul Mincio and Borghetto are located on the border between Veneto and Lombardy. In the latter the “Club dei Borghi più belli d’Italia” (Club of the most beautiful Italian villages) cites some places that are easily accessible from our village that merit an excursion by tourists who, with little time at their disposal, do not want to give up visiting unspoilt places steeped in tradition.

The fortified village of Castellaro is reflected in its heart-shaped lake, a corner of the Garda morainic amphitheater that has been the subject of careful attention by the administration. The ancient Guelph walls, the paving in river stones, the exposed stones of the rectory and the houses have been saved: like the one surrounded by vines, in front of Villa Arrighi-Tacoli, which one would never tire of looking at because it remained. intact since the thirteenth century. In Monzambano, the capital of the village, the medieval castle (12th-13th century) is worth a visit, the original construction of which would be contemporary with the descent of the Hungarians. Inside there is the eighteenth-century church of San Biagio, probably of Romanesque origin.

Pre-D'Annunzio Gardone was an internationally renowned health resort, thanks to the Nordic and Central European clientele, especially Austrians, who came to spend the winter on the mild shores of Lake Garda. Worth seeing, on the lakefront, designed in 1909 as the Kurpromenade of the health resort, Villa Acquarone, Villa Turati, Villa Turati Ruhland and the scenographic Villa Alba, with its monumental staircase. Opposite, the tower-belvedere of San Marco, transformed by Gabriele D'Annunzio in 1925 in a Venetian-military style. On the hills, the most intact village is Gardone Sopra, where there is the Palazzo Comunale, the eighteenth-century church of San Nicola with the two notable paintings by Zenone Veronese and Carletto Caliari, and the Vittoriale.

  • Grazie (Mantua)A sanctuary amidst lotus flowers

The historic core of Grazie is represented by the sanctuary of the Blessed Virgin Mary of Grace and by the buildings located on the perimeter of the square in front. The oldest part is that of the terraced houses in via Madonna della Neve, in which one recognizes - despite the transformations that have taken place - the original cell that gave rise over time to the various building types. Fishermen's houses, therefore, and houses that arose from the closing of the arcades that surrounded the square, like those on the right side of the square, which housed shops and shelters for pilgrims. At the entrance to the square there is a liberty building, Palazzo Sarto.

  • Sabbioneta (Mantua) The Ideal Risorgimento City

You enter from Porta Vittoria (1567) and turn into via dei Serviti to get to the Incoronata church (1586-88) which houses the mausoleum of Vespasian with the bronze statue of the duke by Leone Leoni. A few steps, and we are in Piazza Ducale, bordered to the south by an arched portico that culminates in the west corner of the Palazzetto del Cavalleggero, and to the north by the church of the Assumption, begun in 1578, redeveloped in 1767 with rocaille-style decorations. and embellished by the eighteenth-century chapel by Antonio Galli Bibiena. The short sides of the square are occupied by the Palazzo della Ragione, the ancient home of the Community and the ducal vicar, and the Palazzo Ducale, the center of public life in the small state of Sabbioneta and the first piece of Vespasiano Gonzaga's ambitious architectural program. In Piazza San Rocco we visit the seventeenth-century church of San Rocco and, on the second floor of a group of houses of the ancient Jewish agglomeration, the synagogue (1824), in whose ribbed vault the stuccos made by the Swiss Pietro Bolla (1840) are preserved.

You enter San Benedetto from the entrance of the monastery, which retains the hinges of the ancient portal, and you find yourself in the majestic square, which has remained intact in the size it had in the Middle Ages. The abbey welcomes us with its grandeur and the marvelous architecture that the genius of Giulio Romano designed between 1540 and 1545, rebuilding - without demolishing them - the old Romanesque and Gothic structures, and adopting original solutions to make the different architectural styles coexist in a refined and homogeneous whole. Prior to the death of the countess is the oratory of Santa Maria (late 11th - mid-12th century), which was then adapted to the main church at the time of its rebuilding (1130), according to the scheme of the oratory of Santa Maria di Cluny . A very suggestive place is the cloister of San Simeone in late Gothic style, datable between 1458 and 1480, where the simple garden was located with medicinal herbs to cure the sick. The third cloister, dedicated to San Benedetto and adjacent to one side of the basilica, was rebuilt around 1450 as part of the architectural renovation of Polirone supported by Guido Gonzaga.

Anyone looking from the lake at the houses of Pieve lined up on the edge of the plateau, about 400 meters higher than the stream of water, wonders how a road can get there. For centuries a steep path has linked the port to the capital, for centuries men have carried wood, coal, oil and wheat on their backs. Once in Pieve, the view opens up. Placed on the rocky overhang, Pieve is the capital of another seventeen small hamlets scattered on the splendid plateau, which make up the municipality of Tremosine, one of the largest in the province of Brescia. In the village it is pleasant to walk the narrow streets of the upper and oldest part, with the eighteenth-century church with its beautiful bell tower, which is what remains of the Romanesque parish church demolished around 1570. Continuing, from the churchyard in a few steps you arrive in Piazza Cozzaglio, from where you can admire a wonderful view of the lake and Monte Baldo. The building with a fountain is the ancient municipal seat, while the house at No. 7 in via Scala Tonda saw the birth of Arturo Cozzaglio. But there are still places to discover, such as thelittle church of Pregasio, begun in 1564, the hermitage of San Michele in the homonymous valley, the alleys with the vaulted arcades of Arias and Voltino, and the only hamlet on the lake, Campione, with the former workers' village, the Archetti palace and the church of Sant'Ercolano.

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