Luisavillas - Verezzi - Borgo Castello - Loano
Leaving Luisavillas and taking the highway A10/E80 towards Ventimiglia, you’ll get in 19 km at the exit “Finale Ligure”. Driving along the road SP490 towards Colle del Melogno you’ll arrive in Gorra, and in a few minutes after you’ll be in the little village of Verezzi, with Saracen origins. Verezzi is composed by four different hamlets, all exquisitely Ligurian: Poggio, Piazza, Roccaro and Crosa.
The village of Piazza, starting from 50 years ago, has been transformed every year into a open – air theatre: the characteristic Sant’Agostino’s square, a magnificent terrace guarded by a picturesque XVII century church, is the marvellous stage on which the actors move during the Theatre Festival of Borgio Verezzi.
To breathe some “air of history”, it is worth taking a walk through the streets of Crosa, the oldest village, that seems almost carved into the rock. Right here the evocative “Grotte del Borgo” opens up, and here the most interesting religious buildings are concentrated. Just above Crosa, not far from the Fenicio mill, stands the so-called Cross of the Saints, positioned on a rocky spur by the Capuchin friars in the XVII century: with its height of three and a half meters, is visible from every part of Verezzi.
And for those who have never had enough of this Ligurian jewel carved into the rock, the appointment is among the beauties of the other two villages, the one of Roccaro, with its XVIII century chapel of the Immaculate Madonna, the only building of the village with slate roofing, and the one of Poggio, which develops along two orthogonal lines around its tower.
Going down towards Borgio, you can take the road SS1 Aurelia to Loano. Here, following Viale della Rimembranza, you can reach the castle built by the Doria family just after 1263, when they became the possessors of the territory of Loano.
Borgo Castello stands just under this building, and still preserves the original medieval structure, with cobbled lanes and central square, overlooking arcades and terraces. From here, through two very scenic ramps, you can go up to the convent of Monte Carmelo (1603-08), that dominates the plain and the sea.
The church houses tombs of the Doria family, the last one is dated 1793. The center of the complex is dominated by the church dedicated to the Madonna del Monte Carmelo: just next to it there’s a convent, with cloister and large vegetable gardens behind, where medicinal plants are cultivated.
Returning onto highway A10/E80, you’ll be back at Luisavillas in 30 minutes.