After my dream to visit Maggiore lake came true, we went to visit Martin’s family in Fombio. Thanks to Ariel – Martin’s cousin – we’ve seen several really beautiful places where we wouldn’t go ourselves otherwise.
Ariel and his wife Mery live in a small town called Fombio, near Picenza. In 1796 there was a battle at Fombio where Napoleon Bonaparte’s French army won over the Austrian army led by Johann Peter Beaulieu. Now Fombio is a small and quiet living area with only 6000 people.
Piacenza with 100,000 inhabitants is the closest bigger city to Fombio. The city is located on a major crossroad between Bologna and Milan, Brescia and Turin.
We didn’t spend much time in the city. We visited only the old town and a weekend fair. It was nice.
Since we Martin’s relatives were working during the week, we finally had a chance to catch up with work and simply have some quiet rest. We kept our touristic program for the weekends.
The first place that Ariel and Mery wanted to show us was a town called Bobbio in the province of Piacenza, Emilia-Romania.
The town is located in the middle of the valley of the Trebbia river. According to Wikipedia, Ernest Hemingway called this valley “the most beautiful in the world”. Maybe an expression “the most beautiful” is a bit strong, but no doubt this place got in our top-list of sight we have seen.
At first we went to a famous stone bridge Ponte Gobbo. The Trebbia river was low, when we were there. We could easily walk on the sandy bottom of it without any risk to get our shoes wet. However, this river starts in the mountains, so when it rains water level grows significantly.
According to some researchers, Bobbio is the place where Leonardo Da Vinci completed the Mona Lisa. The background of the painting that you can see behind Mona Lisa was recognized as landscapes of Bobbio.
After visiting the bridge we went to the old town. It was completely empty, almost all restaurants were closed.
It was siesta time, so we walked around the town, sent some postcards, then found a place to have an espresso and moved on to the next location.
Oratorio di Sant’Ana
Next place was Santa Ana’s chapel. To get there we had to leave our car and walk for a while.
The chapel is located on a rock hill with a magnificent view to the valley between mountains and neighborhood towns.
On the top of the rocks there are reservoirs made in pre-historic times that always have water. It does not get dry even in the hottest seasons. There are some rare specious of newts living in this water. We haven’t seen them unfortunately.
To get to the point with the view on the valley we had to climb between walls of the chapel and the rocks. It was not that easy, but it rewarded us with a fantastic panorama.
It is a great place to spend some time meditating or just watching the clouds passing by on the gigantic sky. The rock hill is also good for having a picnic on it, but be sure to have a suitable bag with things.
After about an hour of enjoying the view, spaciousness and the gigantic sky above us we went to have some drinks in a town nearby. That was it for Saturday.
We continued our touristic program on the next day. I will write about our Sunday trips in the next post.