GAVI

The city of Gavi with its 4700 inhabitants is located at 233 meters above sea level in province of Alessandria, and it is the most important district in the area of Vallemme. This Valle(valley) over the last thousands of years has always  been an important way of transition both for the military and for trading (Salt Road) from the port of Genova to the continental regions. The first official document in which Gavi is mentioned dates back to the year 972 and it is preserved in the States Archives in Genova. It was the dominion of the Marchesi di Gavi who were allies with Federico Barbarossa, and was ceded in 1202 to the Maritime Republic of Genova. After the defeat of Napoleon, the Congress of Vienna assigned the Republic of Genova to the Kingdom of Sardinia and, with the reorganization necessary after the conquest of the Lombardy, Gavi in 1859 passed under the rule of the province of Alessandria. Its territory is mainly hilly, rich in white and red soils and with a winery predisposition, all these things give birth, starting from Cortese grapefruits, to a white DOCG wine, the most representative and famous, named GAVI. Gavi’s millennial history offer us to discover various monuments and suggestive and unique places of interest, like the Church of San Giacomo Maggiore (Romanesque church dating XII century), The Forte (fortress dating XVII century), the Portino (walls XIII century), the Parish church Santa Maria Lemoris (X century) and the convent Nostro Signore delle Grazie Della Valle (XVIII century). There are then 3 oratories (XVI-XVII centuries) with remarkable works of art: SS Giacomo and Filippo belonging to the Whites, NS dell’Assunta  belonging to the Turquoises and the SS. Trinità belonging to the Reds: these 3 confraternities still witness today one of the most ancient forms of religious organization dating back to the Dark Ages. Differently from the surrounding villages, Gavi offers to the visitors a particular Old Town characterized by many noble palaces , built between the XII and the XVIII century with many of  them  provided with architectural elements painted with a trompe d’oil typical of rich Genoese manors. Numerous manifestations organized by local associations allow, especially in summer, to admire with a tour guide this precious little jewel. A few minute drive away  from the center stands on a hill the sanctuary “Nostra Signora della Guardia” built in 1861 but whose origins date back to a tragic war event that took place during the Austrian siege in 1746. From the terrace that surrounds the sacred building it is possible to enjoy a wonderful panorama not only of Gavi surmounted by The Forte, but also of the pleasant green hills of the Alto Monferrato, sprinkled with little towns  and red roofs villages with their castles ,and on the background a ring of mountains, from the Appennino Ligure to the West Alps, with the magnificent peaks of Mount Viso, Cervinio and the massif of Mount Rosa.

 

Monuments Link
and places of interest

 Il Forte di Gavi  

 Chiesa di San Giacomo Maggiore  

 Palazzo Municipale

 Il Portino

 Convento di Nostra Signora delle Grazie
 Santuario di Nostra Signora della Guardia  

Oratorio SS. Giacomo e Filippo (Bianchi)
Oratorio N.tra Signora dell'Assunta (Turchini)

Oratorio della SS. Trinità (Rossi)
La Pieve di Santa Maria di Lemoris o di Lemme

Casa di Angelo Francesco Lavagnino 

NOVI LIGURE
The city of Novi Ligure is the biggest district in the historical area of Oltregiogo, a territory located between the regions of Liguria and Piemonte.
The origins of the city date back to the half of V century, when a group of monks, after the destruction of the ancient Libarna by the Lombards, left the city to found the actual Novi. Since XI century it was annexed to the city of Pavia and after 1799 entered in the Napoleonic French Republic, until when, in 1815 it was annexed to the Kingdom of Sardinia and then to the Kingdom of Italy. In the Old Town we can admire noble palaces many of which with painted facades, while in the surrounding countryside there are gorgeous manors such as “ La Marchesa” built at the end of 1700 and today a national monument. These manors belonged to the ancient Genoese Families over the centuries XVII-XVIII; Actually in these centuries Novi became the headquarters of the so called Genoese exchange fairs, and for more than 70 years it looked like an old “Wall Street”, where you could liquidate payments and substantial sums of money derived from affairs ,stipulated in the whole Europe. Novi was the showcase of the Genoese opulence , and acquired throughout the seventeenth the appearance of a Genoese quarter. The whole thing is visible walking in the street Via Girardengo, which is the center and heart of the Old Town. At the end of the street we can admire the most important square named Delle Piane, that overlooks the palace of the same name Delle Piane, the Church Collegiata di S Maria Maggiore and Palace Negroni. The churches Santa Maria Maddalena, San Pietro and Sant’Andrea are remarkable examples of religious architecture. The city walls dating back to 1447 (today just a small section) are witnesses of a glorious past, as well as the Tower of the Castle with an height of 30 mt and the dungeons (visible in summer).
During the years, its strategic geographical position and the wild open spaces facilitated commercial activities and the settlement  of many industries such as Elah-Dufur, Campari, Pernigotti , Ilva etcetc still present today. This is also a land of cycling, and gave birth to unforgettable champions such as Fausto Coppi and Costante Girardendo, to whom is dedicated the “Museo dei Campionissimi” in Novi.

Monuments Link
and places of interest

Comune di Novi Ligure
Palazzo Delle Piane
Piazza Delle Piane
Palazzo Negroni
Chiesa Collegiata S. Maria Maggiore
Chiesa S. Maria - Maddalena
Chiesa S. Pietro
Chiesa S. Andrea
Torre del Castello
 
 
SERRAVALLE SCRIVIA
It is a district with 6200 inhabitants located on the conjunction between the torrents Borbera and Scrivia at 225 meters above sea level. It has ancient origins in fact it is told that, after the destruction of Libarna in 452, some inhabitants built the village that  later became Serravalle.
The name of Serravalle is mentioned for the first time in a public act in 1140. The village was promoted to imperial feud and in the following centuries it passed under the domain of the Spinola, Visconti, the Duchy of Milan, the Austria and the Republic of Genova. Finally in 1815 it passed under the rule of the Savoia family. It is an important road node and conjunction  between Liguria,  Piemonte and Lombardia, and since a few years it is well known worldwide for its Outlet, the biggest in Europe. Among its remarkable monuments and places of interest there surely is Libarna with its ancient evidences from the first century ,when it was a Roman colony; the theater ,the big amphitheater , the insulae, the roads and ancient domus of the roman quarters are all examples of stunning  historical importance. The churches are also very interesting, such as the Collegiata dei SS. Martino e Stefano (XII century), The Oratory of the Whites (XIV –XV venturies) and the Oratory of the Reds (1727). Talking about sport, it should not be left on the background the Golf Club, located near the Outlet, where you can play in a 9 holes golf course.

 

Monuments Link
and places of interest

 

 Comune di Serravalle Scrivia 

Scavi di Libarna

Museo di Serravalle
 Serravalle Designer Outlet 

 Oratorio dei Rossi 
 Oratorio dei Bianchi 
 Collegiata SS Martino e Stefano 

 Serravalle Golf Club 

 

 
BOSIO

It is a district located in the north section of the  ligurian Apennines; with about 1200 inhabitants it is honored, among some other Italian cities, with the Military Cross for Bravery. This district also has ancient origins and we can find evidences of its name in some documents dating back to the year 1248. Like the others locations of the area , Bosio was, during the centuries, protagonist of wars, revolutions and changing  ruling lordships. It was annexed to the Marchesato di Parodi since the XIII century, and then it has been under the Genoese domain for over six hundred years. In 1815 it passed under the domain of the House of Savoy and in 1859 it was annexed to the province of Alessandria. The viticulture activity is predominant due to its particular geographic position and prides itself with DOCG wines such as The Gavi and the Dolcetto. The district is the headquarters of the Park Capanne di Marcarolo in which are found natural beauties such as lakes like Lavagnina, Gorzente and the mount Tobbio with its little church on its peak named Madonna di Caravaggio. Always inside the Park are found the ruins of the Benedicta, an ancient Benedictine abbey, and on the side of it stands the commemorative memorial of the slaughter happened April 6-11, 1944, when 75 partisans and young boys were executed on site by shooting. The final body count was 154 including all the surrounding execution as well. The Park Capanne di Marcarolo offers to the nature lovers, pleasant itineraries through the woods and unpolluted lakes.

 

Monuments Link
and places of interest

 

 Parco Capanne di  Marcarolo 

 Sacrario Martiri della  Benedicta 

 Comune di Bosio 

 
CAPRIATA D'ORBA

It is a district belonging to the historical region of the Oltregiogo, located in the High Monferrato near the torrent Orba and has almost 2000 inhabitants. We can find traces of Capriata in some documents dating back to the year 973. The small village during the centuries was under the domain of the Genoese Republic, the Duchy of Milan and the Marchesi del Monferrato and finally of the Kingdom of Savoy. The village is surmounted by the Tower del Castelvecchio; Bastions and part of the ancient walls are still visible. Like other places of the valley, Capriata offers vacation spots with pleasant paths through grapevines, woods and plateaus. The Nativity play is well known at a regional level. In a suggestive scenario on Christmas night, actors portray the holy nativity through the streets. You should not lose the opportunity to visit the ancient Patron fair that takes place the first July’s Sunday with a solemn procession in which you will be able to see the different Crosses of Christ owned by the religious Confraternities. For those who want to play golf here you can find the best and prestigious Golf Club of Capriata with its 9-18 holes, completely absorbed inside a centuries-old park.


 

Monuments Link
and places of interest

Comune di Capriata D'Orba

Torre di Castel Vecchio

Golf Club Villa Carolina

 

 
CARROSIO
The district of Carrosio with its 500 inhabitants is located on the left side of the torrent Lemme on the street La Bocchetta at 254 meters  above sea level. This territory during the roman-imperial age was included in the area of the ancient Libarna, but it is mentioned for the first time in an old document dating back to the year 1141. It was under the domain of the Marchesi di Gavi, passing later under the Genoese Republic. It became an imperial feud and was firstly assigned to the Spinola family and then to the House of Savoia, becoming in this way an isolated territory of the Savoys inside the Genoese Republic. Carrosio was deleted as feud with the arrival of Napoleon, and joined definitively the Piedmontese kingdom in 1815. It is part of the province of Alessandria starting from the year 1859. Walking in the suggestive streets, in the center you can admire the palace Migliorati Gavotti built by the Spinolas at the end of the XVI century with a Genoese post renaissance style. Starting from the year 1918 a floor of the palace is occupied by municipal offices. In the front of it, crossing a little alley in the Old Town you will get to the Rocca del Lago, which was an ancient bastion with a tower and a sentry box made out of stone and bricks. The  Parish Church Dell’Assunta is an interesting religious place to visit ;it was built between XVII and  XVIII century and has a baroque ligurian style. Carrosio is absorbed in a typical pre-apennine landscape and offers the paths for beautiful walks inside the pine forest that extends for 75 hectares, offering to the visitors a various and extensive flora and an amazing fauna inside this protected and favorable habitat. In the district of Carrosio is also possible to visit one of the most important geological site in the nation; it represents a reference worldwide point in the reconstruction of the different  phases of our planet; To be more specific this geological site dates back to 23 million years ago ,showing the limit between two geological periods, the Paleogene and the Neogene, and two epochs, the Oligocene  and the Miocene.

Monuments Link
and places of interest

Geosito di Carrosio

Palazzo Migliorati Gavotti
Chiesa Parrocchiale Dell'Assunta

Comune di Carrosio

 
FRANCAVILLA BISIO

When the Vallemme gradually loses its Apennine characteristics we find, a few kilometers away from Gavi, on the right side of the torrent Lemme, a small district named Francavilla Bisio with almost 500 inhabitants.Francavilla is, like the other small towns and villages found in this area, a district of the historical region named Oltregiogo and the first document where it is mentioned is a papal bull that dates back to the year 1375. It is surmounted by a massive castle built around a tenth-century tower; during the centuries the castle faced many enlargements and its current medieval aspect is due to the nineteenth-century upgrades . Today it is a private castle and property of the Count Giriodi Panissera di Monastero.

The Proloco organization is very active throughout the year , organizing numerous wine and food based celebrations, where the visitors can taste the culinary specialties of the place such as ravioli and Corzetti

(a type of pasta).

Monuments Link
and places of interest

  Comune di Francavilla Bisio 

 Il Castello di Francavilla Bisio 

 
PARODI LIGURE

Parodi Ligure is a districts with 700 inhabitants, located at 330 meters above sea level on the extreme hilly ramifications of the ligurian Apennine. Parodi’s history is also ancient and its name is mentioned for the first time in some eleventh century official documents  regarding territorial divisions. In the twelfth century some territories were donated to the Benedictine monks who reclaimed the area ,building in the bottom of the valley the abbey of San Remigio, today deconsecrated  but open to the visitors. The territory of the district was, during the centuries, subject of wars and devastations due to its strategic transition position. The district has always been under the rule of the Genoese Republic until 1815 when it was annexed to the Kingdom of Sardinia. It is located on the flat peak of a hill quite close to the Apennines and for its position, the district of Parodi, is the ideal place for holidays and walks in the nature. Its agricultural economy is based essentially on  grapevines cultivation and the production of stunning wines such as The Gavi and The Dolcetto. You can also experience a time travel to the past by participating at the Antichi Mestieri festival  that take place in August.

 

Monuments Link
and places of interest

 Abazia di San Remigio 

 Festa degli  Antichi Mestieri 

 Comune di Parodi Ligure 

 
PASTURANA

The district of Pasturana with 1000 inhabitants is located in the High Monferrato on a little hill on the right side of the torrent Lemme at 214 meters above sea level. We can find historical traces of Pasturana in a donation act that dates back to the year 969. During the thirteenth century this district was in contact with the Genoese Republic  but in the following centuries , due to various events, it passed under the domain of the Marchesi di Gavi, The Spinolas, The Marchesi del Monferrato and finally of the Marchesi Trotti di Milano. Pasturana and its territories passed under the rule of the Savoy’s Kingdom starting from the eighteenth century. Coming into the village from Novi you will admire the primitive Parish Church dedicated to San Martino, built in Lombard age. Continuing your visit you will meet the Spinola’s castle (XVII century) built on a terracing facing the whole valley. The district of Pasturana is well known in the whole area for its fairs such as the fair of Corzetti( A type of pasta ) and the Artebirra fair (an handmade Italian beer feast ).

 

Monuments Link
and places of interest

 L’antica Pieve 
 Castello Spinola 
 Comune di Pasturana 

 Birrificio Birra Pasturana 

 

 

SAN CRISTOFORO

The district of San Cristoforo with 600 inhabitants is located on the left side of the torrent Lemme and it domains the underlying valley, framed in the background by the Alps. Its origins are very ancient and date back to the Augustan-Roman age. The village was built around a watchtower that today is found inside the castle. Over the centuries San Cristoforo was destroyed and occupied several times in 1625 it was occupied by the French-Savoy’s army and in 1564 by the piedmontese troops. It was also an imperial feud of the Dorias back in 1732, and in the end it passed under the domain of the Savoy’s Kingdom. We can admire historical and interesting places in the center of the village: the Spinolas’ castle (XIV century), and a stylish manor surmounted by a Tower and surrounded by fortification walls (X century). San Cristoforo is encircled, like all the other districts, by marvelous grapevines and it has a winery agriculture economy that produces prestigious wines such as The Gavi and The Dolcetto.

 

Monuments Link
and places of interest

 La Torre e il Castello Spinola 

 Comune di San Cristoforo 

 

TASSAROLO

The district of Tassarolo with 650 inhabitants is located on the right side of the torrent Lemme and on the hilly extremities of the ligurian Apennine. It has historical origins and back in the thirteenth century the Marchesi di Gavi possessed the whole urban area of Tassarolo. It was an imperial feud back in  1560 and then a countship, governed in first place by the Spinolas and then by the Dukes of Mantova. The village was destroyed by the French troops in the year 1620 and, in 1763 it ceased to be a feud passing under the domain of the Savoys. The little state was also famous for the mint and it coined coins for a century starting from the year 1604. The visitors cannot lose the opportunity to see the Spinolas’ castle and visit its mint; the castle was  built around an eleventh century tower  and enlarged many times during the renaissance. The “Rovere Verde” is a very particular element of interest; it is a rare exemplary of Quercus Cerris, a natural hybrid between Turkey oak, typical of our Apennine, and cork oak, native of the Mediterranean and because of that very difficult to be found in Piemonte. This exemplary is found near the urban area of Tassarolo between the grapevines and apart from his beauty, it is an important tree also for its dimensions (18 meters tall and 3,7 meters in circumference) and its age: more than 400 years old. Some documents (1631) indicate this tree as place of burial for the plague’s dead corpses (the one narrated by Manzoni), so it must have been of considerable size also back in the day. Tassarolo is an area of production of The Gavi wine, and today it bases its economy also on the cultivation of cereals and as cattle ranch. For those who wants to test their golf abilities, there is a 9-18 holes Golf Club completely absorbed in the green among the tranquility of the Hills.

 

Monuments Link
and places of interest

 

 Comune di Tassarolo 

 Castello Spinola 

 La contea di Tassarolo 
 Zecca di Tassarolo 

 La Rovere Verde 
 Golf Club Colline del Gavi 

 

 

LINKS to the PRO LOCO of the Municipalities

CONSORTIUM OF PROTECTION OF GAVI

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