The Sacro Monte di Varese (literally ‘Sacred Mount of Varese’) is one of the nine sacri monti in the Italian regions of Lombardy and Piedmont which were inscribed on the UNESCO list of World Heritage Sites in 2003. It has an altitude of 807 metres above sea-level.
The Sacro Monte of Varese is located a few kilometers from the city and nestled in the regional park “Campo dei Fiori” which literally translates to “Field of Flowers”. It consists of the Holy Road and the Sanctuary, as well as the small medieval village surrounding the Sanctuary. The Holy Road with its 14 chapels, rise up the mountain to the little village of Santa Maria del Monte and it ends with the Sanctuary (15th chapel) dedicated to the Virgin Mary. The rise is 2 kilometers along on a pebbly path, and every chapel represents one of the Mysteries of Jesus Christ’s life. You can find at the mountaintop the Sanctuary, the Cloister of Monache Romite Ambrosiane, The Museo Baroffio e del Santuario, the Casa Museo Lodovico Pogliaghi, the permanent nativity scene, and different restaurants, bars, a pizzeria, three hotels and a bed & breakfast.
The recently restored Vellone-Sacro Monte funicular operates between a parking lot at the first chapel “Prima Cappella” and the top of Sacro Monte on Saturdays and Sundays throughout most of the year.
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