Sentiero del Viandante

SENTIERO DEL VIANDANTE

THE ROMAN WAY ON THE ORIENTAL BRANCH

◇ NATURE ◇

45km

LENGHT

MEDIUM

DIFFICULTY

3

PATHS

ONE ITINERARY, THREE PATHS

A WALK IN CONTACT WITH NATURE AND THE TERRITORY

The “Sentiero del Viandante” is an interesting route dating back to the Roman period, which runs along the eastern coast of Lake Como, from Abbadia Lariana to Piantedo, for 45 km.

Fitted out in 1989, this walking path offers those who walk along it the chance of enjoying some peaceful hours deep in stillness and in an environment all one with the sky and the lake.

The path, once connecting Milan and the Switzerland, starts in Abbadia Lariana (LC) at the small Church of St. Martin and ends at the Sanctuary of the Madonna of Val Pozzo in the district of Piantedo (SO).

We recommend for the excursion to wear trekking shoes and comfortable clothing

Here are 3 hiking trails having Varenna as their starting point:

FROM VARENNA TO BELLANO

Time needed: 2h – 3h (considering the different stops)
Suggested season: autumn, spring

A short but attractive path which runs from Varenna to Bellano along a thin mule track that winds along the side of the mountain among chestnut woods and mild cultivated slopes.

In a few hours time it collects the best of the landscape characters in this part of Lombardy: majestic landscapes, botanical and geological peculiarities, tokens of faith, places of the popular imagination, scraps of fields, rustic houses, vineyards and olive groves which create a frame that has been sung by poets and writers at length and for a long time.

Interesting spots on the path:

INTEREST SPOT ON THE PATH:

A short but attractive path which runs from Varenna to Bellano along a thin mule track that winds along the side of the mountain among chestnut woods and mild cultivated slopes.

In a few hours time it collects the best of the landscape characters in this part of Lombardy: majestic landscapes, botanical and geological peculiarities, tokens of faith, places of the popular imagination, scraps of fields, rustic houses, vineyards and olive groves which create a frame that has been sung by poets and writers at length and for a long time.

Interesting spots on the path:

 

The Castle of Vezio

 

Visit the page dedicated to the Castle to discover its beauties, events and opening hours.

 

The black marble querries of Varenna

 

The abbot Amoretti, in 1824, stated to be “that hard and pretty marble that we call occhiadino, because it by many eyes seems formed and it composed of blackish marble and white spar, that now and then fills the openings left by the sea bodies intermingled”. Davide Bertolotti, in 1821, noted down in his Journey on Lake Como: “Then we walked by the querries of marble which layers, overwhelming the lake in a nearly perpendicular line, make the work of extraction hard and risky; so that you often see workers, tied in the air with ropes, hitting with the tools on the hard stone, hanging on the precipice”.

 

The dry stone walls

 

Walking along the path, you will certainly have the chance to notice the beauty of the walls that delimit it. They are mighty manufactured works that sometimes are nearly two metres hight. The stones keep and balance themselves simply by compression without the need of mortar or of other binder. Where they do not fit exactly thinner stones are inserted so to make the wall solid and compact. In fact it is exposed to very strong pressures and you can verify this where, by fault or by neglet, the walls are belly-flopped, that is where the soil succeeds in expanding them until they “explode”. In the craks small plants grow; they are varied and among them the tancy (Tanacetum parthenium), the stonecrop (Sedum acre), the red valerian (Centranthus ruber) and the crane’s bill (Geranium robertianum).

 

The funicular of Regoledo 

 

A deep and large man-made wall: ths is what remains of the funicular which, at the beginning of the century, linked up the railway station to the imposing hydrotherapic place, founded at Regoledo, as was called in those times, had renowned guests among which Arturo Toscanini, Ippolito Nievo, Amilcare Ponchielli, padre Agostino Stoppani, Cesare Cantù. The strange building, very long and narrow, is now a branch of the Istituto Sacra Famiglia of Cesano Boscone and can be seen high up, dominating a wide green clearing.

 

The boundary stones

 

They are on the edge of the mule track. They are three and are engraved with the date 1732 and the initials of the municipalities of Perledo and Bellano that border here. Further on you will find again other stones because the administrative limit ran along the path. Near the stones there is a modest chapel that has a precious Crucifixion of the XV century.

 

A lithological boundary 

 

Looking closely at the walls along the track, you will notice that at a certain point the stones become different from thise seen before. At first they are greyish calcareous stones (gneiss and schist). The fact is that you have got past the partition line between the sedimentary cover, typical of the foothills of the Alps and which was formed in the Triassic perios (250-210 millions of year ago), and that of the crystalline base that here emrges.

 

Orrido di Bellano

 

In Bellano the hiking ends right next to the Orrido, a gorge made by the Pioverna River… a really suggested visit. We recommend to wear trekking shoes and comfortable clothes

 

Download the brochure:  Sentiero_del_Viandante_Varenna-Bellano

FROM VARENNA TO LIERNA

Time needed: half a day
Maximum difference in heigh: 563 mt (from Varenna to Coria)
Suggested season: winter, spring

INTEREST SPOT ON THE PATH:

The English peopole’s graveyard 

 

The cemetery was built in 1820 and remodelled several times. It is also known as the “Cemetery of the British” for the various British people welcomed here over the years. The cemetery chapel on the south side, facing the entrance, was built in 1931 to a design by the famous Milanese sculptor Giannino Castiglioni (1884-1971), author of many valuable works including one of the doors of the Milan Cathedral. His son Achille was the recognized father of Italian design. In the peace of the Parco delle Rimembranze, stopping for a moment to meditate, you can enjoy one of the best views of the entire central basin of the Lario

 

The source of Fiumelatte

 

Visit Source of Fiumelatte’s page

 

La Capuana 

 

Just beyond the Fiumelatte, we find the famous Capuana, villa built by Ercole Sfondrati in 1600 and then owned by the Serbelloni family. In 1900 the military road divided the villa from the fountain above.

 

Valvacchera 

 

once it was used by the mountain dwellers of Esino to roll the timber of their woods downstream. Once at the lake, they loaded the woods onto the comballi (old ship) moored at the small pier below.

 

The Castle of Lierna 

 

an ancient agglomeration of houses with small gardens and vegetable gardens that stands on a small peninsula.

 

Download brochure:  Sentiero del Viandante Varenna – Lierna

FROM VARENNA TO ALBIGA

Time needed: one day (considering the different stops)
: autumn, spring

The path, following a short part of the ancient Sentiero del Viandante – from Varenna to Bellano – as far as Cappella Maglia, reaches the green esplanade of Monte Albiga, 864 m.

INTEREST SPOT ON THE PATH:

Castle of Vezio

 

Visit the page dedicated to the Castle to discover its beauties, events and opening hours.

 

The black marble querries of Varenna 

 

The abbot Amoretti, in 1824, stated to be “that hard and pretty marble that we call occhiadino, because it by many eyes seems formed and it composed of blackish marble and white spar, that now and then fills the openings left by the sea bodies intermingled”. Davide Bertolotti, in 1821, noted down in his Journey on Lake Como: “Then we walked by the querries of marble which layers, overwhelming the lake in a nearly perpendicular line, make the work of extraction hard and risky; so that you often see workers, tied in the air with ropes, hitting with the tools on the hard stone, hanging on the precipice”.

 

The Cadriano cross

 

Cestaglia is dominated by the “Sasso di Cadriano” (458 m.) with its cross. They say that at the end of the XIX century, when Regoledo was more than a small settlement, the village butcher killed a fellow villager in a furious row. Even if it was in self defence, the man, with the conscience weighed by such a sin, erected this cross as expiation sign before running away. Thrown down by lightenings, later it was erected again in the first years of the 1920s by a group of young local emigrants before leaving for the “Americhe”.

 

Monte Albiga 

 

It is the top of the North West spur of Monte S. Defendente and it is essentially a peak of rocks covered with a luxuriant vegetation, at the edge of two wide grassy hollows. One can reach the top (915 m.) – covered with an exuberant laburnum wood – following the trace of a path.

 

Download the brochure:  from Varenna to Albiga (Perledo)

Don’t forget that mostly of the towns on this side of the lake are connected by the railway, running from Milan to Tirano (timetable: Tirano-Sondrio-Lecco-Milano ), a very useful option on the way back, if you are tired!
If you’re coming from others towns on the lake, you can cross by ferry or boat service, getting off in Varenna.

CONDIVIDILO CON CHI VUOI

FacebookFacebook MessengerWhatsAppEmail

TREKKING / ITINERARIES

OTHER EXCURSIONS IN THE VARENNA TERRITORY