Lakes

Sant'Anna's Gorge and Cannobina Valley

Lago Maggiore

A true wonder of nature at a short distance from Cannobio: smooth and sheer rocky walls, deep green waters, rocky spurs that look as if severely guarding the quiet water course silently flowing through the entire gorge.
The unrelenting millenary activity of the water of the Cannobino stream has hollowed out this 25 m. deep ravine.
When boating upstream through the gorge, rowing in the silence broken only by the roar of the torrent and crossing the ancestral ravines illuminated only by the few sun rays reaching so far down, one is completely overwhelmed by the fascination and striking beauty of this place.
From the top, the gorge can be crossed with two bridges, the narrowest and most ancient (known as "dell'agostana") and the motorway one.
Built in 1638 by people native of the place living in Rome, the gorge was named after the Sanctuary. Of special interest are the black marble spiral columns of the main altar and the valuable paintings dedicated to Saint Anne’s life; priceless and certainly worth admiring is the apsis, represented by a splendidly frescoed chapel dedicated to the Madonna of Loreto, very ancient and probably preexistent to the church.

The Cannobina Valley holds this name because of the main village located at its edge heading up from Lake Maggiore. The Valley includes the villages of Cannobio, Valle Cannobina (municipality emerged from the joining of Cavaglio Spoccia, Falmenta and Cursolo Orasso) and Gurro and Malesco (Finero hamlet). From an orographic point of view, it is located between the Ticino and Verbano Alps. It is crossed by the Cannobino stream, which forms deep gorges and charming panoramas. After the pastoral visit of San Carlo Borromeo in 1547, its old mule track took the name of “Strada Borromea”, and it is still practicable on foot. An authentic wonder of nature can be found within walking distance from the center of Cannobio, towards the overlooking mountain: the “Orridi di Sant’Anna”. The water of the Cannobino stream, over a period of thousands of years dug in the rock these gorges that reach a depth of 25 meters. From the top it is possible to cross them using two bridges, the oldest one called “dell’agostana” and the second one through the standard roadway. The name originates from the small oratory facing them (1638): inside, the twisted columns in black marble of the high altar are incredibly beautiful just like the precious paintings dedicated to the life of St. Anna. Also, the frescoed chapel of Our Lady of Loreto is remarkable: it pre-dates the church and it is truly ancient, forming the apse.

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46.06113, 8.6684085

46.06113, 8.6684085