Discover the magical beauty of Arona! Check out the 7 must-see and things to do in Arona Italy: from spectacular monuments to beautiful gardens, you’ll receive exclusive information on the best places to explore in Arona Italy, on Lake Maggiore! If you are on Lake Maggiore and go to Arona, what are the best things to do in Arona Italy? This article is your reference guide for the 7 best things to do in Arona, Italy on Lake Maggiore. From visiting historic castles to exploring scenic lakeside trails, you’ll enjoy the breathtaking beauty of this unique destination.
Arona is a pretty town on Lake Maggiore, opposite the Rocca di Angera. Arona was once a fortified city but now its appearance is very different. Now Arona is an excellent place to walk, relax and enjoy the beauty of Lake Maggiore and appreciate its fascinating history.
But what to see in Arona? What was Arona like in the past? In this article, we answer these questions and see other interesting things related to this beautiful location on Lake Maggiore.
Table of Contents for the Top things to do in Arona Italy
Video Short Ancient Borromean walls on the lakeside
Watch the following short video which shows you some of the things to see in Arona.
Lake Maggiore Arona
In the following video some images of Arona.
Arona Italy things to do
What are the best things to do in Arona Italy? Let’s see together.
- Ancient Port and Piazza del Popolo
- Ancient Borromean walls on the lakeside
- Rocca Borromea Park
- Historic Center of Arona
- Fortress of Angera
- Colossus of San Carlo Borromeo
Ancient Port and Piazza del Popolo
Here is the location of the ancient port and Piazza del Popolo: https://maps.app.goo.gl/ECoXF54kKszYEPYE9
In medieval times Arona boasted two ports: a military port and a commercial port.
The military port was connected via the secret staircase directly to the fortress and stood in the area known today as nautical. The structure was irregular pentagonal and protected by imposing walls and defense towers.
Below what is now Piazza del Popolo was the commercial port which was also protected by walls and bastions.
Unfortunately, no evidence remains of these majestic defensive works except for some portions of molded limestone curb typical of the Aronesi fortifications.
The Piazza del Popolo was much smaller at that time. In fact, even today, the serizzo path that delimited the ancient perimeter of the port and then filled in in 1865 in favor of the expansion of the square as we see it today is still clearly visible on the porphyry pavement.
Ancient Borromean walls on the lakeside
Location of the ancient Borromean walls on the lakefront: https://maps.app.goo.gl/xkiCcHDSnHHsBjCF8.
The ancient Borromean walls located on the lakeside of Arona testify to the imposing defensive system that protected the city of Arona from wars and invasions for centuries.
The ancient Borromean walls constituted an effective defense and protection system. From the walls it was also possible to have extensive control of the entire lake area and in particular of the port, which was also protected by locks reinforced with enormous wooden beams.
To constitute a further defense there was a ditch dug at the foot of the city walls which was filled with water in case of danger. This constituted further protection against invaders.
Part of the ancient Borromean walls are now visible on the lakefront thanks to a restoration that took place in 2017 which brought them back to light after over two centuries. About 80 m of city walls and the bases of the ancient Rogoredo tower, which together with other towers, strengthened the walls’ perimeter.
City walls and history of Arona
Over the centuries the city of Arona has seen multiple protagonists involved in the urban and architectural development of the city. Unfortunately, little remains of the 3 walls that defended the territory from the 15th to the 19th century.
Part of the destruction of the walls occurred by Napoleon’s edict of 11 July 1806, which began the almost complete dismantling of the fortifications and the fortress of Arona.
The precious material recovered was then reused for constructing the Sempione road. The Simplon road was part of a new road network which, according to Napoleon’s plan, was to connect Milan with Paris.
In the following decades the village improved its urban structure thanks to important redevelopment and reclamation interventions.
In 1837 the walls that closed Arona in the lower part of the village towards the lake were definitively demolished, to guarantee better ventilation and greater city healthiness.
Rocca Borromea Park
The Rocca Borromea park is located in an elevated position, above the rock that looks like a cliff that overlooks the city.
Here is the location of the Rocca Borromea Park: https://maps.app.goo.gl/6Qdu7A9riGigF3HC6. If you are in the lakeside area, it is best to go to the Rocca park by car as it is not very close: about 20 minutes on foot from Piazza del Popolo.
The Rocca Borromea park is not only the place where the ruins of the castle are located but it is also and above all a magnificent panoramic point from which you can admire Lake Maggiore and Arona from above.
Fortress of Angera
Arona is located in front of the Rocca di Angera. From Arona, you can reach the Rocca di Angera by car in a few minutes or take the boat.
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