Antigorio Valley

From Domodossola, follow your compass point north and the Swiss border is right next door. Before delving into the Formazza Valley or towards Alpe Devero, passing through the Antigorio Valley is a must (and you’ll also discover something truly special). A few kilometres from Domodossola the scenery changes radically and you find yourself immersed in a long valley surrounded by high mountains.

The first village you come across when you enter the Antigorio Valley is Crodo, one of the largest towns in Ossola and, like Bognanco and Premia, developed in the spa sector. In fact, there’s even a large plant for the production of mineral water and soft drinks, near the green Parco delle Terme. These waters have also given rise to one of the most famous non-alcoholic aperitifs in the world: Crodino.

The hamlets high up around Crodo are worth a visit: Maglioggio, Mozzio, Viceno and Cravegna are all sun-kissed balconies overlooking the valley below, at the foot of Monte Cistella. Some superb hiking trails, which you can enjoy in any season, leave from here.

Having left Crodo, you’ll come to Baceno, which welcomes visitors with its extraordinary 10th-century Monumental Parish Church of San Gaudenzio, with its wealth of stunning frescoes. The church was recently improved with new lighting, transforming it into an evocative “ice palace”: an art and cultural spectacle that’s well worth a visit.

From Baceno, the road forks off in two directions: the left leads to Alpe Devero Natural Park and the right ascends towards the last village in the Antigorio Valley, Premia, famous for its modern, highly praised and welcoming spa facility with natural thermal waters. The splendid towns of Salecchio Inferiore and Superiore allow you to discover the oldest Walser Germanic roots of the most extreme valleys in the Ossola region.

The Antigorio Valley is characterised by its uncontaminated environment and the silence of its most remote corners, which can be found right up to Veglia Devero Park and the Formazza Valley.

The rich wood pasture covering the slopes of the mountains hosts numerous livestock farms from which gourmet cheeses are produced (from the delicious Grasso d’Alpe to the typical Ossolano and the famous Bettelmatt – two of the seven mountain pastures where this “white gold” is produced are located in the Antigorio Valley). Local restaurateurs pair these delights with rich wine and food, balancing tradition and innovation, along with sliced meats, red meat, breads, honeys and wild herbs.

Bouldering aficionados will find their very own paradise in Foppiano, but the Antigorio Valley is also home to many other sports, from canyoning to climbing and from Nordic walking to paragliding.

This Ossolan valley is renowned for the spectacular glacial features of the Uriezzo Ravines (the entrances to which are found in Baceno, Verampio and Premia) and Marmitte dei Giganti, created by water erosion, accessed from Croveo (a hamlet of Baceno) and Maiesso (a hamlet of Premia).

Authentic flavours, clear (and warm) waters, unique natural spectacles and an uncontaminated environment make the Antigorio Valley not only a link between the city of Domodossola and the highest peaks on the border with Switzerland, but a real kaleidoscope of things to offer. It’s a place well worth exploring.

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