A valley of unspoiled nature, charming villages and ancient traditions, at the foot of the impressive east face of Mount Rosa, only 80 km from Malpensa.
Extraordinary and authentic, the Anzasca Valley is the bursting, wild nature that leads to the impressive East Face of the Monte Rosa Massif, the only one of Himalayan dimensions in the entire Alpine arc, a visit to the Belvedere Glacier not to be missed.
At the foot of the highest peaks lies Macugnaga, an undisputed jewel of the Alps: the quaint Walser settlement, beautifully preserved over the centuries, is also an internationally acclaimed ski resort that boasts a comprehensive and proven tourist offering.
Picturesque views of Monte Rosa and enchanting nooks and crannies, yet to be discovered, can be found throughout the Valley. The intermediate resorts of Pieve Vergonte, Piedimulera, Calasca Castiglione, Bannio Anzino, Vanzone San Carlo and Ceppo Morelli are connected by the ancient "Strà Granda," a fascinating 32-kilometer-long route/pilgrimage of medieval origin suitable for everyone, where lush forests, streams, waterfalls, mountain pastures and ancient stone villages with their surprising array of history, art and culture alternate.
The Valley has never succumbed to the disruption imposed by mass tourism, keeping strong and firm its original character and its spaces intact, this value makes it today an unspoiled and precious fairy tale with many opportunities.
Here time still passes slowly, quietly and cordially, hospitality is familiar and, thanks also to a territory completely free of contaminants, the food and wine offer is of a high level with excellent niche productions for the most attentive consumers.
Known as early as 1100 for the wealth of gold deposits underground, it is home to the most active mines in Italy until the last century (now open to the public). The Valley of Gold is clothed in intense colors and scents in all seasons to provide ever-changing emotions.
Whether you are looking for quiet contemplation in hiking, breathtaking views or the adrenaline rush that comes from mountain sports, this is the place to be.
Splendid alpine resort, at the top of the Anzasca Valley, at the foot of the imposing East Face of Monte Rosa immersed in unspoiled nature.
It was founded in the 13th century by the Walser, a people of ancient Germanic origin who, in the Middle Ages, after colonizing the Goms valley (Canton Valais-Walliser from which they borrowed the name Walser) across the Alpine passes colonized 150 high-altitude settlements, becoming the "People of the Alps." An 'exceptional tenacity, combined with a simple but highly efficient community organization and extraordinary architecture make the Walser colonies, and especially Macugnaga ( Makanà), an alpine jewel known throughout the world.
Our hamlets, houses, streets, religious or civil monuments and flowery corners are a joy to behold.
But not only in the village: the Walser colonies can be visited thanks to the Monte Rosa TOUR or the Great Walser Trail.
History, culture and Walser traditions still characterize Macugnaga: the typical architecture of its dwellings, the traditional clothes worn for special occasions such as the St. Bernard Fair, which takes place on the first weekend of July, and the patron saint's day of Ferragosto, as well as the Titsch language and the typical small nucleus of the "Dorf" with its perfectly aligned stone and wooden buildings.
The peculiarities of centuries-old Walser life is encapsulated in the Old Walser House Museum in Borca, a hamlet of Macugnaga, dating back to 1610 and open to the public since 1983, thanks to the great generosity of the residents. The building has three floors and houses more than 600 objects from the daily life of the Walser people, photographic collections and ancient documents.
The Mountain and Smuggling Museum is located in the heart of the main hamlet of Staffa and narrates the courageous and not always successful attempts to climb the mountaineering routes of the East Face of Monte Rosa and the history of heroic mountaineering through the exploits of a number of mountain guides who remain "holy monsters" for mountain enthusiasts to this day, among them Mattia Zurbriggen, Ferdinando Imseng, Luciano Bettineschi and Giuseppe Oberto.
Macugnaga today is a modern tourist center to visit in all seasons.
In winter it offers 35 km of ski slopes ( from the village to 3,000 meters above sea level), two Nordic skiing rings a snowpark with unique views of the Alps. There are numerous snowshoeing trails suitable for the whole family, but it is also considered a paradise for ski mountaineering, attracting world-class athletes who undertake athletic preparations here in preparation for the most prestigious competitions.
During the summer, there are many opportunities to stroll through the hamlets, pastures and forests, among mapped and equipped trails that allow you to discover dozens of alpine pastures, lush and rare flora and a rich alpine fauna with ibex, chamois, deer, roe deer and marmots, eagles... The Fauna Oasis includes the Monte Rosa Nature Trail, an ideal hiking loop, while for walkers there is a wide choice of refuges and itineraries, and for experts at high altitudes in the Monte Rosa massif the confrontation with the mountain is exciting.
Macugnaga, like all Walser villages, is a diffuse village. This means that you will not find a "point on the map" to call Macugnaga, but the union of many small hamlets : Stabioli - Pestarena - Fornarelli - Isella - Motta - Quarazza - Borca - Staffa - Dorf - Pecetto . The ancient Walsers called the whole territory Z - Makana'
Macugnaga, at 1327 meters, stretches at the foot of the imposing East Face of Monte Rosa, of Himalayan caliber with its 2,500 meters of elevation gain.
The history of Macugnaga (the "pearl of Rosa"), began in the 13th century, when the Walser, a people of Alemannic origin from Valais, occupied this beautiful basin in the upper Anzasca Valley, thus beginning the Walser colonization in the southern valleys of Monte Rosa.
The Walser, an authentic high-mountain people, knew how to make the most of what the high-altitude pastures offered and with their extraordinary ability to adapt gave rise to one of the most characteristic alpine communities, handing down, from generation to generation, language, customs and culture.
Today the Walser tradition is evidenced by the architecture of Macugnaga's dwellings, some of which date back to the 1500s. Also very valuable and original are the costumes worn by the women and men on special occasions and the Titsch language. The old core of the Dorf with the Old Church dating back to 1300, the cemetery and the majestic centuries-old linden tree are very impressive.
The traditional costume of Macugnaga is characterized by four types of dress: the work dress - Wiarterock, the full dress - Ganzerock, the party dress - Firterock and the 'gala dress - Tracht.
Pestarena, a small hamlet of Macugnaga, is "gold country": the entire mountain below is a junction of gold galleries exploited by hundreds of miners until 1961.
They were the most important gold mines in Italy.
This is why the inhabitants of Pestarena are united by the "Sons of the Mine" association that keeps alive the memory of the hard work and mining techniques, which can be visited in a small museum on the village square.
Even more important, original and interesting is the Guia Mine, at the hamlet of Borca, which allows visitors to (re)discover the life of miners in the bowels of the mountain, with guided tours.
The centuries-old Old Lime Tree, which legend says was brought by a woman at the time of the founding of the community of Macugnaga
It stands near the Old Church, in the vicinity of the Dorf, the small cluster of typical Blockbau (interlocked larch logs) dwellings that are emblematic of Walser architecture.
The Old Church of Macugnaga (former parish church) is one of the symbols of the village and is dedicated to St. Mary. A document dated 1317 states that it was signed under the church porch. Despite modifications during the 1500s, the church retains its characteristic physiognomy that fits perfectly into its surroundings.
Not far from the church, near the cemetery of Macugnaga, stands in all its majesty the 14th-century Old Lime Tree, in the shadow of which judicial and administrative meetings of community interest were held. The imposing tree, reported to be more than 700 years old, has a base circumference of 7 m.
Baking for the Walser people of Macugnaga was an important moment of community life, a mixture of folk festival and ritual. Bread was baked once a year in the Ofe* fractional ovens. On a year-by-year rotation, the families near the oven would lend their Stube room, in which there was the ancient Fornetto stone stove, which was kept at a fairly high temperature for the occasion so that the dough, which the women worked in the large marl, could rise properly. It was then divided into large Bowiaga* forms, and left to rest in "religious" silence, on a characteristic Rollbett* wheeled bed, covered with a freshly laundered sheet and a woolen blanket. When the leavening was completed, the Bowiaga would split superficially, then the women would begin to prepare the loaves, arranging to knead them around a table. The completed loaves were placed on boards and taken to the man in charge of the Ofemandji* oven, who proceeded to bake them.
Ofe* - Fractional oven
Bowiaga* - Bread dough
Rollbet* - Bed with wheels
Ofemandji* - Caretaker of the oven
Meltschuru* -Rounded bread shapes for girls
Zibel* -Elong bread shapes for boys
The San Bernardo Fair is definitely the most important and characteristic festival in Macugnaga, celebrated every summer during the first weekend of July.
Created with the intention of reviving the ancient Fair of the Assumption, which was held in Macugnaga as early as medieval times, the St. Bernard's Fair attracts an increasing number of artisans each year who display their products giving demonstrations of the different techniques of workmanship.
The Walser House Museum, located at the hamlet of Borca, is a real period home, still complete with all the furnishings and objects that characterized it in the past. Every single room of the house can be visited, in a tour that allows you to
Info openings: www.museowalser.com - The museum can always be visited upon request to the guide cell. 347 9842329 - The guided tour lasts 45 minutes.
+39 347 9842329
Don't miss the Museum of the Mountain, in the center of Staffa, and the Museum of Smuggling, whose intent is to tell the centuries-old story of Alpine smuggling, which unites all the border mountains and now belongs only to the past. A unique museum in Italy and Europe that through black and white images restores to memory one of the most characteristic phenomena of the valleys between Italy and Switzerland.
Linked to a bygone era, to an ancient and strenuous job is the Guja Gold Mine Museum, located at the hamlet of Borca, the first mine in the Alps open to visitors as well as the first mine-museum in Italy. Along a fully illuminated 1.5-kilometer route, it is possible to relive the history of a strenuous trade and learn about gold mining techniques and methods. Visits are by reservation only.
+39 340 .3953869
Since ancient times, the water of the Scheber Spring was known as "Acqua buna" by the locals, the first to benefit from its therapeutic properties and appreciate its special lightness.
In fact, for mountain people, water was the most precious commodity: springs were meticulously sought out and cared for so that they would not be lost over time.
The Quarazza Valley is a side valley of the Anzasca Valley; known, in particular, for the charming Lake of the Fairies, the valley ends at the Turlo Pass, beyond which it descends into Valsesia.
At one time the small hamlet of Quarazza stretched along a much larger area than it does today; the ancient hamlet, in fact, was submerged by the waters of the lake following the construction of the dam that bars the course of the Quarazza stream.
The Belvedere Glacier (Wengwald), which can also be reached by chairlift, offers a unique natural spectacle at an altitude of 2,000 meters, with its glacial tongues and spectacular seracs punctuating the grandeur of the East Face of Monte Rosa.
The Belvedere can also be reached along an easy trail from the hamlet of Pecetto di Macugnaga
is placed at the Monte Moro Pass at an altitude of mt 2,950 above sea level, on the Swiss border so that it can be seen shining from afar and from the entire Swiss Saastal valley
The statue, sculpted by Giuseppe Banda, is made of bronze and is 4.60 meters high. It rests on a 4-meter-high concrete base covered with stones. The figure is slender and slender, and on the arms rest two drapes detached from the body so that the wind can infiltrate gently caressing it. Welded in place, it was half filled with reinforced concrete to ensure its wind resistance. On its head a crown reminiscent of the Sperada or Raggiera