Travel tips - Travel ideas

Valle Vigezzo, the Valley of the Painters

Written by Francesco Forestiero, 08/08/19

Nature, culture and traditions found in the magic of the Alps. A unique and enchanting place where art is considered one of the pillars.

A unique place

The Vigezzo Valley. Typically alpine, fresh, open, restful, clear. Its path is accompanied by two streams that flow in opposite directions and that give life to a flat basin that is rich with light and colors. These colors  have enchanted -  and continue to enchant -  residents and tourists. It is so magical that it has inspired many artists - both contemporary and of the past -  and this is the reason why this place is called the "Valley of the Painters".

It is located in northern Piedmont, specifically in the province of Verbano-Cusio-Ossola.

It connects Italy with the Canton Ticino. It is a valley that has no real end, and is more a corridor of tectonic origin which was most likely modeled by glacial activity: a pleasant plateau at about 800 meters of altitude.

It is formed by a territory with rich vegetation and abundant water despite the moderate altitude of the surrounding mountains.  Therefore there is an absence of glaciers and snowfields.

[Alessandro Vecchi/Wikipedia]

The Valley of the Painters

The polychromy of colors present throughout the year means that this place was given the name of "Valley of the Painters" - a definition that reflects the history of the place, and not only because it was the birthplace of many artists, but also because it was rich with secular traditions.

For those in search of inspiration, the Vigezzo Valley provides extraordinary images: woods, beeches, peaks, ponds and silence.

For sports lovers

Valle Vigezzo is also ideal for those who want to spend a holiday which is more "dynamic". This is because it offers the opportunity to practice numerous outdoor sports: hiking trails, riding stables, horseback riding, tennis, golf, archery, football, rock climbing and so much more.

In the winter, a vacation amongst the Vigezzina nature offers unique and suggestive emotions. You can practice hiking, cross-country skiing and downhill skiing, snowshoeing and enjoy skating rinks.

Typical products of the Vigezzina gastronomy

Rich in flavors, the Valley offers: polenta; cheeses and dairy products; cured ham (sweet and smoked); salamini; goat violins: black bread;  fixings made with white flour and buckwheat; digestives; and grappa.

A product that deserves to be mentioned is certainly the "Gnoch da la Chigiàa" -  the "spoon dumplings". This dish obtained the "De.Co." -  the Municipal Denomination of Origin title in 2016.

They are prepared with a thick mixture of white flour, water and salt and then slid into boiling water. They are seasoned with butter, cheese and sage (or other local aromatic herbs).  At times, fried lard is added.

[Alessandro Vecchi/Wikipedia]

Santa Maria Maggiore

Santa Maria Maggiore is the most important center of the Val Vigezzo. It is a refined village with a tourist vocation. It is well - known for the International Chimney Sweep Gathering. It is also the birthplace of Giovanni Paolo Feminis and Giovanni Maria Farina, respectively the inventor and divulger of the Acqua di Colonia.

At this location there is no lack of monuments and places of cultural interest. Worth mentioning are: the Parish Church of Maria Santissima Assunta, the churches of San Giovanni Evangelista and San Rocco, the church of San Lorenzo in Buttogno,  the Torre de Rubeis, Villa Antonia and the International Chimney Sweep Museum.

Not to be missed are the characteristic Christmas markets that enliven the streets of the Borgo, every year starting from the Immaculate Conception.

Reproduction reserved © Copyright Altrama Italia

Immagine descrittiva - BY [Kyllwtr/Wikipedia] c

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