Twelve alleys, a castle... and how beauty: Montemagno, the paradise of Monferrato bread.
Montemagno it's guarded by the imposing castle, one of the best preserved of the Asti region, built in the 10th century on the hill overlooking the valleys of the Gaminella and Grana streams.
The town spreads over the hills, to the north-east of Asti; the westernmost outcrop borders of Alessandria territory.
The town covers an area of 16.10 km² and has a population of about 1100 inhabitants.
It is about 17 Km from the provincial capital, Asti.
Around the year 1000, when the territory was still covered by extensive woods, in this part of Italy that today is called Monferrato, the first steps of the historical and human history of the community of Montemagno took its first steps.
The oldest part of the town is organized on a large hill (Montemagno) around a fortified first place, fiefed to the Marquises of Monferrato.
The medieval structure, unique in the Lower Monferrato, is still visible today: from the first fortification, which later became an imposing castle crowned with Ghibelline battlement, twelve narrow alleys closed off from the remains of the walls to draw the "old fence".
Food and wine and typical products.
The simplest of foods but also among the best: bread.
Montemagno dedicates to the magical dough based on flour and water, every end of May, the manifestation Bread to Bread (Pane al Pane), praise of the Monferrino bread.
The town is also part of Città del Pane association which promotes the recognition and enhancement of bread throughout Italy.
To be seen.
The Montemagno Castle (or of Calvi Counts of Bergolo) underwent several transformations over the course of thousand years of history.
The last one, which took place in 1700, has partly changed the fortress into an elegant country house, surrounded by a terraced park, one of the most interesting "green monuments" of the Lower Monferrato thanks to the presence of a majestic Atlas cedar and a secular chestnut tree.
The castle is now privately owned.
Walking through the alleys of the historic center (we note in the Vicolo Primo The House on the Gate (La Casa sul Portone), the last gate of the medieval walls) we reach Piazza San Martino dominated by the spectacular baroque stone staircase of Cumiana that gives access to the parish church, subsequently remodeled in the 18th and 19th centuries.
At the foot of the stairs is the Church of Confraternity of Saint Michele (18th century).
At the gates of the village stands the small church of Saint Maria della Cava, whose apse is embellished with a cycle of religious frescoes dated 1491.
Near the cemetery is the Romanesque "jewel" of the village: the remains of the Church and the Tower of Saints Vittore e Corona (eleventh century), recently restored, are a living testimony to the antiquity of the site, from which there is a striking view of the town and the surrounding countryside.
Between history and legend: in the village the devotion to the Madonna of Vallinò is very lively, venerated in a sanctuary located just outside the town.
According to tradition, the sanctuary was built in the place where a pious hermit lived.
Every year on September 8th a solemn procession reaches the church to celebrate a Mass in honor of Our Lady.