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Grazzano Visconti - Cathedral of Bobbio - Piacenza

Price: 51.00 EUR
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Countries: Italy
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Route: Milan - Grazzano Visconti - Cathedral of Bobbio - Piacenza - Milan
Duration: 9 h
Our first stop of this tour we will make at the picturesque village of Grazzano Visconti which it is a town entirely realized in the 19th century in neo-Gothic style, which reproduces the architecture of the 14th century and is full of green areas and decorative elements. In 1395 Duke Gian Galeazzo Visconti, Lord of Milan, authorised his sister Beatrice to build a castle on their property of Grazzano. A square castle with four corner towers, and on the inside a courtyard with porticoes, and loggias and walkways above. It was Guido's son, Giuseppe Visconti di Modrone (1879-1941), who restored the castle and created a project to replace the few simple buildings that existed between the castle and the parish church of Grazzano with a complex in fourteenth-century style. Working with the architect Alfredo Campanini, he restored the castle at the end of the 19th century, giving it its present appearance, and began building the village of Grazzano. Finally the castle was surrounded by a park of 15 hectares, including a labyrinth and a playhouse for the children, exotic trees and those more typical of the Apennines. Next we will visit to small town Bobbio where walking through Contrada di Porta Nova, Bobbio’s main street, we reached Piazza Duomo where is the Cathedral of S. Maria Assunta. The place dates back to the XI century and features beautiful, colorful paintings such as a XIV-century Annunciation and an interesting representation of the Last Supper, where sleepy John is depicted with feminine-looking features, thus seeming to confirm the thesis that the person sitting on Jesus’ right is actually Mary Magdalene. There is also a crypt that contains the remains of all of the bishops of Bobbio since 1600 and a diocesan museum. The history of Bobbio is strictly tied to that of St. Columbanus, an Irish monk that arrived in Bobbio in 614 after traveling through Europe to spread the word of God. Here he founded a monastery that became one of the most important cultural centers in medieval Italy. The heart of the monastery is the Basilica, which dates back to the XV century and has a crypt which preserves a beautiful XII-century floor mosaic and Columbanus’ marble sarcophagus. Other interesting sights include the Church of Saint Lawrence, which dates back to the XII century, and the Virgin Mary’s Help Sanctuary, with an image of the Virgin Mary that is said to have dripped sweat from the forehead back in 1611. Also we will walk across the Ponte Vecchio bridge. This is a 280-mt. Romanic bridge with 11 arches, all different from one another, which makes it really unique. Some historians believe that this is the bridge that we see behind Mona Lisa in Leonardo’s famous painting. Next we will visit to Piacenza which was named 'pleasant place' (Placentia) by the Romans, Piacenza soon proved itself to be an important strategic location as well. Its picturesque centre reveals a beautiful Gothic town hall and a couple of august churches. Heart of the city are Piazza dei Cavalli, towered over by the splendid Palazzo Comunale or Gotico (13th century) and Piazza del Duomo, towered over by the Cathedral in Romanesque style.  Among the great number of excellent monuments stand out the Church of San Sisto, the Church of Sant’Antonio and the Neoclassical Theatre. You cannot miss the impressive Palazzo Farnese, built in the second half of the 16th century and now centre of the Civic Museums with many different sections.After free time we return to Milan.
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Countries: Italy

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