Lake's District Guide Lake's District Guide
Orrido di Sant\'Anna (Foto Distretto Turistico dei Laghi) Upper Verbano
Leaving Verbania and moving toward the Swiss frontier along the lake, you reach Ghiffa, which is a privilehed observatory on the lake and fashionable holiday resort as testified by the smart villas, built since the nineteenth century.
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Among them, the villa belonging to the Russian Prince Peter Troubetzkoj. Ghiffa also has many important religious buildings such as St. Cross' Church, dating back to 18th

century, the oratory of Our Lady of Assumption in Susello, already built in 1173 and now a national monument and the Holy Trinity Shrine with frescoes and chapels dating back to the seventieth century. Holy Trinity's natural park was instituted in 1987 and spreads over 200 hectares enclosing great part of Mount Cargiago.

The Museum of Hat Art testifies the traditional local production of felt hats, for which hatter masters from Ghiffa became popular all over the world. The museum is situated in a part which was the historical hat factory “Giovanni Panizza & C”. On the way to Switzerland you find Oggebbio, whose micro-climate being particularly mild even during the winter allowed the development of the flower-art, particularly camellia growing. Indeed, camellia winter flowering is unique in Europe. Villa Anelli and its wonderful park is the delight for those fond of botany. Some camellias coming from Japan, England, New Zeland, the United States and China have being growing here since 1872.

Also the oratory of Mary's Nativity, in Cadessino, should be visited. It hasa wonderful cycle of frescoes from the fifteenth century. In Oggebbio too, there are many beautiful villas, among them that belonging to Pasha Draneht, where Giuseppe Verdi had been a guest. The mild climate characterising this part of Lake Maggiore inspired the name of Cannero Riviera and allows to admire luxuriant lemon, citron and olive trees in gardens and parks with a background of chestnut-trees woods, which cover the steep mountain behind the coast. Witness of the restless history of this territory and object of disputes between the Sforza and Visconti families, are the so-called castles of Malpaga. They were built between 12th and 14th centuries on three small islands not far from the coast, from which the Ghibelline family of Mazzerditi imposed fines on the local populations. In order to bring an end to these raids, the duke Filippo Maria Visconti destroyed the castles in 1414. During 16th century, the Borromeo family ordered to build the “Vitaliana” rock at their place, also in order to protect the lake against the Swiss raids. Among the popular visitors of Cannero Riviera, you can cite Winston Churchill and Massimo d'Azeglio. He had a villa built in this place, where he wrote “I miei ricordi” (My Memories). A commemorative epigraph has been erected in his honour by the local population. Particularly pleasant the excursion to Trarego Viggiona, a town localted at the foot of Mount Carza surrounded by woods which slope down to the lake; interesting the visit to the old church of Viggiona, national monument dating back to the Romanesque age, altered during the sixteenth century, with valuable frescoes in the apse and baptistery. The last town before the Swiss border is Cannobio which shows the signs of its historical evolution through its buildings of different architectural styles placed side by side along the lakeside.

The town centre is formed by small beautiful streets, and particularly valuable is the medieval palace Palazzo della Ragione and the Romanesque tower Torre del Comune. Ouside the town, a characteristic medieval village: Carmine Superiore with stone-buildings, grouped around the small St. Gothard's Church dating back to the Romanesque age. A famous attractive place is St. Ann's ravine: a narrow rocky gorge falling sheer to the water of River Cannobino, whose sides are linked by two bridges of different ages. On the edge of the precipice you find St. Ann's Church, which was built during the seventeenth century. Now in Cannobina Valley where you can go on many excursions through country walks or visit small town as Cavaglio Spoccia, up to alpine pastures; Cursolo Orasso; Gurro with the ethnographic museum of the Cannobina Valley, with documents on the local culture and traditions and Falmenta with its stone-houses adorned with devotional frescoes.



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