Sacro Monte di Varese
Sacro Monte (Sacred Mountain) is the finest example of history and art in the Varese area. It is one of the nine sites known as the Sacri Monti (Sacred Mountains) of Piedmont and Lombardy that were inscribed on the UNESCO list of World Heritage Sites in July 2003.
Sacro Monte has always been a place of pilgrimage and popular with other visitors. The Sacro Monte di Varese complex includes Via Sacra (holy road), a cobbled devotional road that passes by fourteen chapels as it climbs the mountain. Skilfully integrated into the surrounding countryside, each chapel is different and dedicated to one of the Mysteries of the Rosary, which are illustrated with sculptures, paintings and frescos.
The end of Via Sacra is marked at the top of the mountain by the Santa Maria del Monte Sanctuary where the Coronation of the Virgin, the fifteenth mystery of the rosary, is represented on the high altar.
The small village on Sacro Monte is still lived in today and charms visitors with its shady, windy lanes, steep steps, lantern-lit archways and many Art Nouveau homes.
The village also has two museums: the Baroffio Museum and Sacro Monte Sanctuary overlooking Varese and the Lodovico Pogliaghi House Museum.
ADDRESS: Viale del Santuario - Varese
OPENING HOURS: SANCTUARY: 8am -12pm, 2pm - 6pm // CRYPT: Saturday, Sunday and holidays: 9.30am - 10.00am, 5.30pm - 6.00pm. Guided tour (reservation needed): 10am - 5.30pm
TICKET: Free entry. Crypt guided tour € 5
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